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Best grand piano sound for keyboard


Ybyb

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In the long run, find something you like and play well. Use it for years. The rest of us will come to the party/parties.

 

(Keep the weight down.)

 

I was in Munich for celebrations in June 2013, and heard great digital piano work in band settings, and twice I was surprised to see that the keys used were Nord. Sound a bit "not quite right" by themselves, but great in a band through a PA. And the weight is right.

 

I use a Roland RD700NX, but it is just a tad long, and too heavy for a one-trip along the street setup. I would change, but everything else has drawbacks, too. And you can hire a Roland like this one anywhere in the world.

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Nice clip. Maybe all you need is a piano amp instead of a digital?

 

I can't believe nobody else thought of/suggested this - it seems like the best and most obvious solution.

 

There's already a piano there - nothing else will feel/play as good, it's just not loud enough. Why lug an inferior DP? Get a really nice condenser or ribbon mic, a preamp (preferably with a couple bands of parametric EQ) and a small active speaker.

 

Can you hear yourself? If it just needs to be older out front, just point the speaker at the crowd.

Dan

 

Acoustic/Electric stringed instruments ranging from 4 to 230 strings, hammered, picked, fingered, slapped, and plucked. Analog and Digital Electronic instruments, reeds, and throat/mouth.

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Another member here said, you could later add the laptop -Ivory, Purgatory whatever - route, and use that same keyboard with its speakers!

as long as the piano has line inputs. Not all of them do.

Some that don't: Casio, PX-150, Yamaha P35/P105/P155, Roland F20, Kawai ES100, Korg SP170

Some that do: Casio PX-350, Yamaha P255, Roland FP50/FP80, Kawai ES7, Korg SP280

I think that's right...

 

Can anyone list viable candidates for decent keyboards with decent internal speakers?

The Yamaha CP300 was popular for this, if you can still find one around. Weighs a ton, though, and not cheap ($2k). What weight and price constraints would you be looking within?

Maybe this is the best place for a shameless plug! Our now not-so-new new video at https://youtu.be/3ZRC3b4p4EI is a 40 minute adaptation of T. S. Eliot's "Prufrock" - check it out! And hopefully I'll have something new here this year. ;-)

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Hi AnotherScott This of course is Dave's thread. But Bob Jazzmammal made a very strong point about internal speakers.. and the, shall I call it, "locality effect".

I think I need to regroup, and possibly go this route

Keyboard with capability to MIDI a VST at a later date and where that VSTs sound is coming through those internal speakers as well as monitors and FOH.

Weight is a secondary concern.. sound is most important, and those internal speakers ring true to me. Thank you Jazzmammal and Scott for reminding us.

You don't have ideas, ideas have you

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are. "One mans food is another mans poison". I defend your right to speak hate. Tolerance to a point, not agreement

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What's better? Internal speakers, or a freakin piano?!,!?

 

Seriously.......mic the freakin piano.

Dan

 

Acoustic/Electric stringed instruments ranging from 4 to 230 strings, hammered, picked, fingered, slapped, and plucked. Analog and Digital Electronic instruments, reeds, and throat/mouth.

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Hi AnotherScott This of course is Dave's thread. But Bob Jazzmammal made a very strong point about internal speakers.. and the, shall I call it, "locality effect".

Yes, and also, I have long been a proponent of internal speakers because they can give you a sense of vibration through your fingers as you play, which is similar to what happens on an acoustic piano, so it helps create a more realistic feel.

 

Sometimes, they are also useful strictly as a convenience. If a piano has good speakers, I can play a cocktail hour kind of thing without bothering to hook up any more gear, it's convenient, neat, and quick. Speed is also nice if I'm doing a wedding and playing ceremony, then quickly have to move into another room to do cocktail hour, than into another room where I'm plating with full band for the reception... only in the last part do I have to plug into anything, and I can have that pre-set-up and ready to go. (Though sometimes I actually bring a whole different 88 for that, so transistion time is zero.)

 

I also like internal speakers for quick rehearsals which are often unplugged... vocal rehearsals, or other times where I may b playing alone or just with a guitarist, that kind of thing. It's ready to go instantly with no setup time. If it's not at my place, it's just one piece to bring to wherever I'm going (maybe two, if I need to bring a stand as well). But weight is a factor too. As much as I like the built in speakers, I wouldn't bring around a 75 lb board! But I've used Roland (older FP-2/FP-4), Yamaha (GHS models), and Casio (a few). For this purpose, I'd take the Rolands over Yamaha, and Yamaha over Casio.

Maybe this is the best place for a shameless plug! Our now not-so-new new video at https://youtu.be/3ZRC3b4p4EI is a 40 minute adaptation of T. S. Eliot's "Prufrock" - check it out! And hopefully I'll have something new here this year. ;-)

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Nice clip. Maybe all you need is a piano amp instead of a digital?

 

I can't believe nobody else thought of/suggested this - it seems like the best and most obvious solution.

...

 

Right if the video piano is there, and there are no other uses for the DP, I'd certainly go down a few floors, mike the nice piano properly (meaning any way that works good), get the mix out of whatever PA system there is a bit right, practice two tree times with the band, and BAM, great performance!

 

I've been into amping pianos in highschool (quite a while ago, but still relevant), I think that was hard but interesting. And rewarding when done right. If the present PA system has it: add a little Lexicon reverb/chorus(-20dB, -30 dB or something) to the mix..

 

T.

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So AnotherScott.

Might you name top contenders internal speaker Ac piano magic

I guess leave weight out of your list. You might mention those nominees closest to your personal 'bests" and then make a sideline mention of " but it weighs 75 lbs, kind of thing.

 

It sounds like you liked Roland the best.. but I wanted to be clear. Also I recall the heavier Yamaha CP 250 300 were highly favored a decade or so ago.

 

Just name the best sounding feeling AP EP with speakers.

You don't have ideas, ideas have you

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are. "One mans food is another mans poison". I defend your right to speak hate. Tolerance to a point, not agreement

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My experiences on the off topics in this thread:

 

1. The newest of the Roland keyboards with built in speakers are the FP-50 and the heavier, more expensive FP-80, with a somewhat more elaborate on-board speaker system. I've been a fan of on-board speakers ever since their FP4, but for good fidelity, you have to supplement it with a good sound system. I prefer having some sound coming from the instrument I'm playing, and they do work well as a monitor when running through a PA.

 

2. About putting a mic on a piano (where decent pianos actually exist at a gig) - I always carried piano pick-ups to go into the house system of rooms I played that had pianos. It worked great, and you don't "pick up" the sound from the room and other instruments through a mic.

 

3. About the Bose L1 pole, I've had that supplied for me on a few gigs, and I tried it when it first came out. The whole point of it is sound dispersal. For some instruments and older keyboard technology (such as the old Roland FP5) it sounded great, but for more recent high resolution piano samples it sounds terrible. The lows are good but the highs are virtually non-existent and the mids are harsh. Again, it depends what you're running through it as to whether it works. The sound dispersal concept appeals to me, but accurate sound quality is important.

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So SK, when a player with your track record gives his opinion, I for one, pay attention. I am glad you left the possibility that the Bose L1 COULD sound well under the right circumstance. I used it with EON and it was very good. Maybe I like a boxy mid sound on AP.. long ago when I first heard the PC88 Kurz AC piano, it took me a minute to adjust ( I think it is a psychological adjustment)

All of a sudden I went from not liking the PC88 piano to thinking "hey this sounds like some 60's BlueNote recordings of undefined origin ". From then on, I liked the PC88 piano. Then much later the Bose came along, and the two seemed to work together.. again with this "Blue Note 60's" mid heavy vibe/ or timbral bias. What I liked, because I mentally accepted the PC88 long ago, some of you guys, disliked, saying it was boxy, and all that.

 

Moving on to the more important point ( for me ) point #1 Are you saying I should consider the Roland FP80 with the "more elaborate sound system" it comes with?

Where would you place additional monitor speakers ( stereo field ) in relation to your seat?

What types ( JBL QSC etc ) do you prefer for AC piano?

What size speaker?

And this. what about later adding a VST to the Roland, would the VST come through the internal speakers? Also the FOH and my monitors with no undue hassles?

Thank you SK for your input.

You don't have ideas, ideas have you

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are. "One mans food is another mans poison". I defend your right to speak hate. Tolerance to a point, not agreement

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I know it is a workstation, but I have read great things about the grand piano sound (and variations) that are included in the relatively lightweight and inexpensive Korg Krome. It has unlooped samples for every note.

 

(By the way, this is NOT me playing in the video below.)

 

[video:youtube]

 

The action on the 88 key Krome was the worst I've ever touched. Very disappointing considering the other features of the board.

Live: Korg Kronos 2 88, Nord Electro 5d Nord Lead A1

Toys: Roland FA08, Novation Ultranova, Moog LP, Roland SP-404SX, Roland JX10,Emu MK6

www.bksband.com

www.echoesrocks.com

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I week ago last Saturday I played a Krome 61 at a rehearsal. The guitar player owned one and we played at at his house. It saved me from bringing in the S90 throught the ice frozen tundra.

 

The Krome 61 played like dog shit. Tried to do Will It Go Round In Circles in Ab. If you dig in on the black keys the ****** does not play.

 

Seriously I exaggerate a little when I post sometimes but I am absolutely straight up on this. Krome 61 is the worst thing I have ever played in my life.

 

 

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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Yes, and also, I have long been a proponent of internal speakers because they can give you a sense of vibration through your fingers as you play, which is similar to what happens on an acoustic piano, so it helps create a more realistic feel.
yes, this is really important .... :facepalm:

57 Hammond B3; 69 Hammond L100P; 68 Leslie 122; Kurzweil PC3; M-Audio Code 61; Voce V5+; Neo Vent; EV ELX112P; GSI Gemini & Burn

Delaware Dave

Exit 93 Band

 

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Do folks generally like the grand piano sound on this box? I'm figuring the the heat of playing with a live group, and with a good amp the various different sounds of the many possibilities that folks have mentioned in this thread will sound pretty alike to the audience...?

 

You have used simple deduction to conclude rightly what others have taken years and mucho dollars to ascertain.

 

Busch.

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I'm figuring the the heat of playing with a live group, and with a good amp the various different sounds of the many possibilities that folks have mentioned in this thread will sound pretty alike to the audience...?

 

It's not about the audience. :cool:

 

 

"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent." - Victor Hugo
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So SK, when a player with your track record gives his opinion, I for one, pay attention. I am glad you left the possibility that the Bose L1 COULD sound well under the right circumstance. I used it with EON and it was very good. Maybe I like a boxy mid sound on AP.. long ago when I first heard the PC88 Kurz AC piano, it took me a minute to adjust ( I think it is a psychological adjustment)

All of a sudden I went from not liking the PC88 piano to thinking "hey this sounds like some 60's BlueNote recordings of undefined origin ". From then on, I liked the PC88 piano. Then much later the Bose came along, and the two seemed to work together.. again with this "Blue Note 60's" mid heavy vibe/ or timbral bias. What I liked, because I mentally accepted the PC88 long ago, some of you guys, disliked, saying it was boxy, and all that.

 

Moving on to the more important point ( for me ) point #1 Are you saying I should consider the Roland FP80 with the "more elaborate sound system" it comes with?

Where would you place additional monitor speakers ( stereo field ) in relation to your seat?

What types ( JBL QSC etc ) do you prefer for AC piano?

What size speaker?

And this. what about later adding a VST to the Roland, would the VST come through the internal speakers? Also the FOH and my monitors with no undue hassles?

Thank you SK for your input.

First, if you have a copy of my "track record", please send it so I'll know what it is. :laugh:

 

T, to be clear, I do not 'endorse' the Bose pole. I think it's an innovative but flawed product that works great for some things (like mic'ing folk singers, acoustic guitar players and such, and for some software instruments, certain patches, older keyboard sounds or a bass.) I do understand how you've accepted it as a "Blue Note 60's" thing... Blue Note records had that analog tape, compressed sound and a little boxy... but unlike the L1, at least they were stereo.

#1 Are you saying I should consider the Roland FP80 with the "more elaborate sound system" it comes with?
Not saying you "should consider" the FP-80, but you can check it out, along with the FP-50. I said the FP-80 has a "somewhat more elaborate" speaker system, meaning it has a couple extra speakers over the FP-50 for more bass response. I haven't played one, but I have the FP-50. A final note on these Roland keyboards: by tweaking the EQ, etc., the speakers can be much louder and stronger sounding than the default settings, but you'll still want a supplemental sound system. Yamaha also has some less expensive keyboards with built-in speakers you could check out - I don't know the model #'s.
Where would you place additional monitor speakers ( stereo field ) in relation to your seat?
I'd place additional speakers where the audience and band will hear them, and where I can hear some of the sound too. In small rooms usually about 10' or less apart, to approx. the size of a piano.
What types ( JBL QSC etc ) do you prefer for AC piano?
Depends on the particular speaker, a variety of brands like JBL, EV's, up to higher end stuff. The best setup I've had in recent years is 2 Accugroove 3 way speakers (12", 6.5" mid, 2 tweeters each) and a 700 wt. QSC stereo amp. I sold this to member Noah Zark... got tired of hauling it but it sounded great. I haven't been happy with two way speakers for a piano sound because the mids can honk, but I assume the higher end two way speakers do a good job. Also, with built-in speakers, you can supplement it with a little less.
What size speaker?
In the 'old' days, I preferred 12" speakers... 15's could be too boomy. Now with advanced speaker technology, I lean towards 10" and even 8" for piano. I've also found that a sub-woofer (just a touch) adds realism to the mid and bottom end of a piano sample.
what about later adding a VST to the Roland, would the VST come through the internal speakers? Also the FOH and my monitors with no undue hassles?
Yes and yes, if there are inputs on the keyboard. The Roland FP's have them, and I'm sure other brands as well.

 

As lucky as we are to have them, portable DP's to me are mostly utilitarian. The recent advancements in DP's have been incremental, and as a piano player, my enthusiasm for any of them on a scale of 1-10 is around 3-4.

 

T, any other questions, please send a PM so we don't further hijack the thread. Good luck, and report back on your findings and what you finally decide to get.

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T, any other questions, please send a PM so we don't further hijack the thread. Good luck, and report back on your findings and what you finally decide to get.

That's Mr T. to you ... http://www.biography.com/imported/images/Biography/Images/Profiles/T/Mr-T-413140-1-402.jpg

57 Hammond B3; 69 Hammond L100P; 68 Leslie 122; Kurzweil PC3; M-Audio Code 61; Voce V5+; Neo Vent; EV ELX112P; GSI Gemini & Burn

Delaware Dave

Exit 93 Band

 

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.......and some of those new Yamaha powered speakers (at least 10 inch) can do pretty well.

T.

 

Minimum 12" for AP , imo

 

I like a ten if it's straight piano. It makes the bass more thinner and can really help keep the mid rolls down in a problematic room.

Question to the o.p. : Are the pianos mic in the clubs? Sounds like you got some dbs rockin. Might have to go with a portable just to cut through mix.

"A good mix is subjective to one's cilia." http://hitnmiss.yolasite.com
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I like a ten if it's straight piano. It makes the bass more thinner and can really help keep the mid rolls down in a problematic room.

This is quite a generalization regarding how woofer sizes relate to the sound of a DP. The design of the cab, 2 way vs. 3 way, port or no port I think these are all factors (not to mention the sound of the samples themselves!). Not singling you out, bzo, I've seen this repeated in other posts. The bottom line IMO is that some people like an exaggerated bass, some like a treble that cuts through a band with loud guitars... everybody is different. I prefer a fairly neutral sound and I like my QSC K8s, but I find that I need to cut a bit in the 200hz area... which I believe is the "mud" area of a mix. No problem at all on my laptop system of course; all my VI plugins have their own EQ. I've tweaked them a little, but it was just easier to insert a parametric right before my final output. Sometimes I set up with my speakers right against a wall, so I cut a little more or move the center freq a bit.

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Dave, this:

 

As lucky as we are to have them, portable DP's to me are mostly utilitarian. The recent advancements in DP's have been incremental, and as a piano player, my enthusiasm for any of them on a scale of 1-10 is around 3-4.

 

Or as I said earlier, they all suck. Especially when you live on that Steinway in your living room. Just don't expect too much. When the discussion goes to simply who makes the best keyboard and it's not specifically asking how do they compare to a real grand, I'll sing the praises of my PC3. It's a great axe but as a piano it sucks next to the Knabe in my living room. As a stage keyboard with all the EP's, synths, orchestrals etc, it's killer.

 

The speaker system is key. Those Behringer B208D's I talked about cost me $252 for a pair off Amazon. They sound surprisingly good. Those with my EV ELX112P which I bought used for $350 makes a very good three speaker setup and it surrounds me with sound for $600.

 

Bob

Hammond SK1, Mojo 61, Kurzweil PC3, Korg Pa3x, Roland FA06, Band in a Box, Real Band, Studio One, too much stuff...
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I think that's an overly cynical and dogmatic view of D.P's , they don't suck anywhere near as bad as a crook acoustic.

And who the hells got a Steinway Grand in the house these days - which is too dam heavy to carry around and mike up and tune all day and night.

That's before it needs a $10,000+ overhaul.

Acoustics are gradually going the way of the Dinosaur.

 

Brett

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You haven't seen Dave's vid's have you? He has a very nice Steinway in his living room that he used for some of the vids then he's done other vids at local clubs where he's also playing a very nice sounding grand.

 

But of course I agree that if it's an old pos grand then sure my Kurz is way better than one of those. But that new Yamaha I referred to earlier? No way, sitting side by side against that one my Kurz sucked. Bad.

 

Bob

Hammond SK1, Mojo 61, Kurzweil PC3, Korg Pa3x, Roland FA06, Band in a Box, Real Band, Studio One, too much stuff...
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