Harmony Central Forums
Announcement
Collapse
No announcement yet.

Amplification for digital piano ?

Collapse



X
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Amplification for digital piano ?

    I'm 14 months from retiring from my day job and anticipating playing more often than my current average of about 3 gigs a year. So I'm wanting to upgrade my gear. I'm thinking of buying a Yamaha P40 (or possibly the older P33) for gigging. I'm figuring a newer digital piano would sound better than my old P90, but I've never been happy with my amplification. At home I play a Yamaha P140 (with onboard speakers and a pair of Genelec monitors for more volume when needed). I like the sound mye P140 and the Genelecs and I've guessed that there's something about the sound from smaller speakers that makes the piano sound (to me - not sure of the proper term) integrated. A decent approximation of a real piano.

    So I'm wondering about the Bose L1 line array speakers. Has anyone heard a digital piano at concerts or conferences or whatever. I'm thinking that 2 of them might give me that full satisfying sound I'm looking for. I have no knowledge of the acoustics or electronics involved here. So I'm consulting your collective wisdom.

    I looks like I'm in a band with drums, bass and electric guitar so I'm also needing to be heard in the mix.

    Guess I should mention what piano amplification I'm unhappy with. I currently have a Barbetta Sona 41. Great amp. Acoustic electric guitar sounds great played through it. But for a simulation of a piano it falls short. I had a couple of small JBl Eon pa speakers - I think 10 inch (I was following my theory that I need smaller speakers).

    Last edited by davd_indigo; 06-08-2014, 04:20 PM.
    https://soundcloud.com/david-goethe/tracks

    Dave's ,YouTube channel

  • #2
    Hi Davd,

    I've looked into this for myself too. I even have a set of Genelecs on either side of my digital piano, and a Barbetta in the corner!

    So... I listened to the Bose and... didn't like it. Their rep is that they're OK for jazz, but don't cut through with electric instruments. I didn't like it for anything.

    What a lot of folks do is use good PA speakers for a keyboard amp. It's a better reproduction than the typical keyboard amp. There's some more affordable options, but these days I'm liking the L'Acoustics.

    Comment


    • #3
      One thing I've noticed about Yamaha digital pianos is that they must be amplified in stereo.

      I use a pair of Yamaha MSR100's with a Yamaha CP5 - I used to (and sometimes still do) use them with a P120 - and they sound great. I would, however, recommend the MSR250s for more headroom and a more solid low end if you need to be loud.
      who you are in the world depends on the opinions of others - that is not important

      what is important is who you are within yourself

      Comment


      • #4
        I've never been happy with keyboard amps either but I put up with either my Roland KC100 or Behringer K1800 just used as a personal monitor while also sending the signal to the FOH mixer for the best sound out front.
        http://www.crazydeliciousband.com/

        Comment


        • #5
          All you need is enough to fill the stage. It can always be sent through the PA for the audience.

          A Buddy of mine uses a small PA rig on stage, two cabs and a stereo head. Keyboards do have a wide frequency response and can benefit from good PA cabs so long as they have enough low end. A stereo powered mixer might be a good solution and you can separate the PA cabs enough to get some nice stereo fill. I don't think I'd go any smaller then 12"s and a horn. If you went with powered cabs then all you would need is a mixer and even then, the keyboards preamp might be strong enough to drive them directly if you want to keep it super simple. The mixer would allow some tonal adjustment for the best sound though.

          Comment


          • #6
            I used to go with a couple of powered cabinets behind me tilted up on amp stands. Having that stereo sound sound behind me was the only way to get a good, full piano sound to my liking on stage. Everything else always just seemed liked a "monitor" compared to how guitarists listen to themselves onstage.

            . These days I use IEMs which changes everything, but is by far the best way to hear my keyboards on stage with a band.
            _________________________________________________
            band websites:
            http://www.JumpStartYourParty.com
            https://www.gigmasters.com/Rock/Jump-Start
            https://www.facebook.com/JumpStartYourParty
            http://www.weddingwire.com/biz/jumps...587fe5f12.html

            Comment


            • #7
              Along the same line as using 2 PA cabinets, has anyone mixed two different speaker cabinets? Like say my Barbetta and a Yamaha MSR250 or Barbetta and a Bose L1. There are probably acoustic reasons why this is a bad idea. But since I don't know, I'm throwing this out there.

              If the L1's are good for jazz as Goober(s) mentioned, I should check them out since my style and preferences lean toward more (simulated) acoustic music. The R&R band is just a fun project right now (if it turns into a viable entity). My main drift is things like jazz piano. But if I could come up with a setup that could be augmented with the Barbbetta for louder (R&R with electric dudes), that would be ideal for me.

              So, anyone blended or mixed 2 types of speaker cabinets for digital piano ?
              https://soundcloud.com/david-goethe/tracks

              Dave's ,YouTube channel

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by davd_indigo View Post
                Along the same line as using 2 PA cabinets, has anyone mixed two different speaker cabinets? Like say my Barbetta and a Yamaha MSR250 or Barbetta and a Bose L1. There are probably acoustic reasons why this is a bad idea. But since I don't know, I'm throwing this out there.

                If the L1's are good for jazz as Goober(s) mentioned, I should check them out since my style and preferences lean toward more (simulated) acoustic music. The R&R band is just a fun project right now (if it turns into a viable entity). My main drift is things like jazz piano. But if I could come up with a setup that could be augmented with the Barbbetta for louder (R&R with electric dudes), that would be ideal for me.

                So, anyone blended or mixed 2 types of speaker cabinets for digital piano ?

                yeah... just to clarify... because the L1's don't really "cut through" like you'd need with an electric band, people say they work better for jazz than rock. However, having listened to them, I don't think they're good for jazz or anything since I don't think they sound particularly good. But they are convenient.

                I think you'd do better soundwise to get a PA.

                not sure about mix and match --you'd have to try it!

                Comment


                • #9
                  If you're going to run stereo it makes sense to have matching cabs. You sure don't want half the keyboard to sound different then the other. If you run mono, you could mix an match just about anything in say a biamped situation. Its no different than using several different cabs stacked to produce bass, mids, horns etc. All the keys would come out of all the cabs in that case though so its not like you'd be running stereo through separate cabs.


                  My buddy said he saw a full band using nothing but those L1 arrays and subs. He said he was blown away by the sound quality in a smaller club. I kind of trust his judgment because He has allot of experience including playing in a band with me for many years. They may not be good enough for rock stuff but a pair of them with the subs might be fine for keyboard. The only way to know for sure is to try them out. They aren't cheap though. I could probably do a whole lot better with the $2000~3000 those things coat and still have a butt load of cash left over.

                  You may even want to use a pair of keyboard amps so you have true stereo. In my case I own a hefty PA. I don't play keys allot but when I do I use a small mixer, send a mono signal to 4X10 cab that has a small horn and hefty head and use that for stage monitoring. And I also send a stereo signal to the PA. I dial up mostly bass and mids for the stage monitoring and get most of the highs from the PA. This gives the sound some elevation and three dimensionality yet I can still feel the power in back of me from the cab. When you have a whole band going you don't hear allot of the stereo anyway unless you were out in front of the band listening to the PA.

                  I've even set the keyboard on an amp with the speaker aiming back at me like a church organ. Makes it easier to hear playing with a loud band. You could also take a 4X12 cab and split it and run each side with a stereo power head. Most you may need to do is add some additional horns for the highs. Having a single cab is a whole lot easier to move around then lugging two cabs, plus getting it on some smaller stages is allot easier.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thought I'd share my take away from your advice.

                    I'm thinking I will be trying out the Bose L1's. If I like them for acoustic (sounding) piano. I'll get them for home use. I've started inviting 1 or 2 musicians at a time to play in my living room and plan to continue this. If I like the L1's (and I really want to) I'll keep them in my living room for home playing and recording. Right now I expect to plant a Yamaha CP4 in the living room as a permanent fixture, not to be moved.

                    Later, I will maybe search for some small PA cabinets specifically for gigging with the idea to swap them out with the L1's (temporarily using the PA cabinets in my living room) when the L1's are more appropriate.for a given situation..The Bose are a near term move. The PA cabinets are a purchase a little farther down the road.

                    I'm going to allow myself to spend the money for these as a sort of capital investment. I don't expect to make a lot of money here but it will be a significant part of my life. I always say that toys are justified if one really plays with them.

                    Thanks for the advice guys.
                    https://soundcloud.com/david-goethe/tracks

                    Dave's ,YouTube channel

                    Comment









                    Working...
                    X