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RinTin Offline OP
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Jazz piano Instructor. Technical Editor for Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book". Studied with Mark Levine, Art Lande & Mark Isham (1981-1990). Also: Barry Harris & Monty Alexander (1993-present)
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James Pavel Shawcross*

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I just wonder how they are eqing the video. In the video they are sounding totally different from the sound in real life. Anyone? Any idea?

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Originally Posted by Kihar
I just wonder how they are eqing the video. In the video they are sounding totally different from the sound in real life. Anyone? Any idea?

I didn't check this particular video, but this is the general problem with all DP video reviews.
Mostly they use DP line-out. So the sound you hear is kind of similar to what you'd get if you connected your speakers/headphones to the DP line-out (phones-out if no line-out). Which is mostly quite different from the built-in speakers sound. Add some streaming compression artefacts.
In some cases they use mics. That brings the built-in speakers into the equation. But of course they are still reproduced with your speakers/headphones, and in addition there is the microphone with its properties.
Bottom line, for the sound in real life you must be there smile

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When I listen to these videos they are usually recorded from line output. So the sound should be about the same when I listen to it with the same headphones that I use with my digital piano or am I missing something? The sound of video is totally different from the sound of headphone jack.

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This is click bait!

When you say James ‘round here, it means James, Kawai James!

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Originally Posted by Kihar
When I listen to these videos they are usually recorded from line output.

This one apparently isn't.

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I'll just quote myself here.

Originally Posted by EinLudov
I saw the video, Oh man, JP's gonna get an earful from the kawai reps. grin

Quote (paraphrase from video):

Kawai is losing track of what they're doing.

The es520 and the es920 just don't inspire me.

Buy es110, it has the best pianistic response" gringrin

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The ES110 action is the best, IMO.


Jazz piano Instructor. Technical Editor for Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book". Studied with Mark Levine, Art Lande & Mark Isham (1981-1990). Also: Barry Harris & Monty Alexander (1993-present)
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Due to the clarity of the video, I think he’s obviously using their line outs.


Jazz piano Instructor. Technical Editor for Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book". Studied with Mark Levine, Art Lande & Mark Isham (1981-1990). Also: Barry Harris & Monty Alexander (1993-present)
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It could be recorded with quality microphones in an acoustically treated small space.

I mean... it's a recording studio he's in. 😉

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Originally Posted by Pete14
This is click bait!

When you say James ‘round here, it means James, Kawai James!

"My name is James... Kawai James". smile


Kawai ES8, Roland RD2000, Yamaha AG06 mixer, Presonus Eris E5 monitors, Sennheiser HD598SR phones.
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Originally Posted by Pete14
This is click bait!

When you say James ‘round here, it means James, Kawai James!

LoL, I also thought this . . .

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I've watched quite a few of this chap's reviews. In some, he does mention that he's using the line-out.

I do enjoy his attitude. Clearly he's a fan of acoustic piano, but is not biased towards the high-end digitals - happy to praise more modest instruments. He also seems to be independent.

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Originally Posted by RinTin
Due to the clarity of the video, I think he’s obviously using their line outs.
For some reason, even his acoustic piano recordings sound as if they are processed or eq driven. Not sure, but it never sounds natural to me.


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1) From the video I can hear clearly that the SK-EX piano patch in the ES920 HI-XL engine sounds better than the PHI one in the ES520. The HI-XL engine uses longer samples and I'm pretty sure it has 2 more velocity layers, one in the upper range, one in the lower range, so it sounds more rich, round and deep, especially when you play piano/pianissimo in the first 3 octaves, but the beginner probably would not notice these differences... They are very subtle.

2) The guy in the video clearly confused the RH-II action with the RHC-II action, because he thought that, from the specs, the RHC-II should have a let-off simulation. The RH-II action has the let-off, but the RHC-II is a totally different action, so it's normal it has NO let-off.

3) He says the ES110 is the best for a traveling pianist, because it has the lighter case, the piano sound is not the best but it's nice enough, and the key action responds better than that in the RH-III. I think the main reason for this is that he considers the fake let-off just as an hindrance to his playing. It doesn't let you play better, it just get in the way of your pianissimo playing, and being just a fake rubbery thing, it doesn't quite feel like the true let-off you have on an acoustic piano action. I agree with him on this point: the current fake let-off emulation we have on middle/high-range plastic/plastic-wood actions is just an hindrance in pianissimo playing, so paradoxically, the cheaper Kawai action is the more playable one.

But he didn't say that the ES520 action is basically the same of the ES110 one, but with 3 sensors instead of just 2, so it should be the best of the 3. Maybe he should do a video where he plays the ES520 as a MIDI controller for the ES920.

Sometimes I think how great it would be if you could buy your perfect digital piano by choosing its components in the same way you choose optionals for a car. For example:

- case: ES8, ES920
- key action: RHC-II, RH-III, GFC, GF3.
- engine: PHI, HI-XL, SK-EX Rendering Engine
- UI panel: LCD/OLED textual UI with buttons, touch-screen panel graphical UI.

and so on... You could buy the best compromise for your pockets and your needs!

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No, kawai's site clearly made a mistake in the labeling on their site, RH2 with letoff.

He definitely knows this though because it's labeled correctly on the same page in paragraphs, and other sources as rhc 2, so he's just using this discrepancy as a talking point, common in journalism.

On kawai us, it's incorrect, on kawai global it's correct.

As for RHC1 vs RHC2 between es110 and 520, it's not straightforward, because the hardware and software have changed, their interconnectedness could lead the user to perceive a different lvl of playability, but this is subjective.

[Linked Image]

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Originally Posted by EinLudov
No, kawai's site clearly made a mistake in the labeling on their site, RH2 with letoff.

He definitely knows this though because it's labeled correctly on the same page in paragraphs, and other sources as rhc 2, so he's just using this discrepancy as a talking point, common in journalism.

On kawai us, it's incorrect, on kawai global it's correct.
So are you saying he is deliberately discrediting Kawai with that trick? Is he in bad terms with Kawai? I don't think that's the case (considering the big amount of Kawai instruments he has)... IMHO it's just that he didn't do his homework well before doing the video. He even admitted the mistake in a comment:
[Linked Image]
But... Who knows... Everything is possible!

Quote
As for RHC1 vs RHC2 between es110 and 520, it's not straightforward, because the hardware and software have changed, their interconnectedness could lead the user to perceive a different lvl of playability, but this is subjective.
IMHO he should have played the EX ConcertGrand patch on the ES520 and the 920, instead of the SK-EX one, to make a better comparison between actions, being that the ES110 has only the EX sound.

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Originally Posted by magicpiano
1)Sometimes I think how great it would be if you could buy your perfect digital piano by choosing its components in the same way you choose optionals for a car. For example:

- case: ES8, ES920
- key action: RHC-II, RH-III, GFC, GF3.
- engine: PHI, HI-XL, SK-EX Rendering Engine
- UI panel: LCD/OLED textual UI with buttons, touch-screen panel graphical UI.

and so on... You could buy the best compromise for your pockets and your needs!

That’s a great idea.


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Originally Posted by magicpiano
Sometimes I think how great it would be if you could buy your perfect digital piano by choosing its components in the same way you choose optionals for a car. For example:

- case: ES8, ES920
- key action: RHC-II, RH-III, GFC, GF3.
- engine: PHI, HI-XL, SK-EX Rendering Engine
- UI panel: LCD/OLED textual UI with buttons, touch-screen panel graphical UI.

and so on... You could buy the best compromise for your pockets and your needs!

You mean, buy a midi controller, iPad/android/laptop/raspberry pi, VST, and monitors? smile

I thought about it, but not actually that many good controller options. Plus the maintenance overhead.

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