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  • Best Stage Piano?

    Hey All, 

     

    Trying to find the best stage piano out there.  I love a good piano sound with a great action.. not too heavy action like the Yamaha's.  

    I don't need a million patches that are sequenced and play "one man band" type stuff.  

    Please just give me GREAT essentials:

    1. Piano (that mixes well with a live band - sometimes the sound is great but bring it to a live band / gig situation and it gets lost in the mix.)

    2. Electric Piano (Rhodes / Wurly - that don't get lost in the mix )

    3. Strings -( for church work)

    4. Synths (w Tap - Arppegiotar )  but Quality rich sound like the Roland Jupiter or Virus Access

    Ill pay the money.. I just feel that it's 2014 and alot of the major companies are not really improved their technolgy in the past 10 years.  They just change the buttons and face plate around a little.

     

    Thanks, EddieF88


  • #2

    Is there such a thing as a "great stage piano" ... that has synth sounds "w ap and appegiator"?   The whole "tap and appegiator" thing are definite synth features that I've never seen as part of the feature set of anything that would be considered in the running for "great stage piano" consideration.   

    Personally, if I were looking for a "great stage piano" with the other features you're looking for - I'd be giving a long hard look at the new Yamaha CP4 .... 88 real wood, weighted action keys, sounds based on the MotifF sound set - in a 38 pound package.   The feedback on most of the musician forums is very positive.  I can't imagine this not being a contender in the "great stage piano" category.

    The SpaceNorman

    www.facebook.com/SuperstarsOfRock
    www.souldoutrocks.com

    Keyboards and Tone Generators: Yamaha CP300, Kronos 88, Roland AX Synth, Motif ES Rack
    Keyboard Rack: Samson SM10 Line Mixer, Motu MIDIExpressXT MIDI Interface, Shure PSM200 IEM system, M-Audio Wireless MIDI, Live Wires IEM ear buds, iPad wOnSong.
    Stage Amplification: Stereo via 2 Yamaha DSR112s

    Comment


    • kbeaumont
      kbeaumont commented
      Editing a comment

      I think the CP4 is an excellent choice, but if you really want the synth and arpeggiator then look no further than the casio PX-5s. It has an arpeggiator and an 8 track sequencer, along with a very good sound set.


    • moogerfooger
      moogerfooger commented
      Editing a comment

      SpaceNorman wrote:

      Is there such a thing as a "great stage piano" ... that has synth sounds "w ap and appegiator"?   The whole "tap and appegiator" thing are definite synth features that I've never seen as part of the feature set of anything that would be considered in the running for "great stage piano" consideration.   

      Personally, if I were looking for a "great stage piano" with the other features you're looking for - I'd be giving a long hard look at the new Yamaha CP4 .... 88 real wood, weighted action keys, sounds based on the MotifF sound set - in a 38 pound package.   The feedback on most of the musician forums is very positive.  I can't imagine this not being a contender in the "great stage piano" category.


      I just bought a CP 4 and its very good.  the action is fantastic and the sample sets are well done.  it really shines on the rhodes sounds, the CFX piano is very playable as is the S6 for a softer rounder sound, the CP 80 is spot on but its such a dated sound - who uses that anymore? maybe a doobies tribute .... 

      the bass sounds are quite good and most of the performances can be used right out of the box. 

      editing it is a little un-intuitive but not difficult once you get your head around the system.  I still havent figured out how to apply the volume pedal to just the layer. -- to bring strings or any other layered sound in and out but thats a minor issue. 

      but that said -- the CP4 is a keeper. its light enough to schlepp yet meaty enough to satisfy the purest purest. 

      got mine for 1850


  • #3

    he said it... PX-5S

    lightweight, 88 graded keys, pretty good patches that u listed, and not a lot of money... that's why I bought one.  Try one at your piano store if u have one and I think you'd like it.  Some synths may not be as great as a Jupiter... no analog sounds like the Virus but many similar sounds.

    Maarkr HW: Privia Pro PX-5S, Casio XW-P1, Juno-G, Lucina... Epiphone Les Paul, Schecter Hellraiser C-1, Peavey Valve King 112, Mesa Boogie 2x12, Ovation Celebrity, Ibanez Gio Bass... Alesis D5 EDrums, Yamaha HS-80s w sub, Saffire Pro 24 thru Mackie Big Knob; Live: Behringer B315D, Peavey PV118D, Roland KC550, Zoom R-16...etc. SW: Reason 6, Sonar X3, Reaper, Acid Pro, IKMultimedia , UAD1...

    Comment


    • AnotherScott
      AnotherScott commented
      Editing a comment

      maarkr wrote:

      he said it... PX-5S

      lightweight, 88 graded keys, pretty good patches that u listed, and not a lot of money... that's why I bought one.  Try one at your piano store if u have one and I think you'd like it.  Some synths may not be as great as a Jupiter... no analog sounds like the Virus but many similar sounds.


      As a synth, the PX-5S notably lacks a mono (single note) lead mode, if that might be an issue.

      Casio PX-5S is a great value, with a very nice action, in a terrifically lightweight package. I don't think it meets the OP's sonic requirement as well as the other boards I mentioned, but if price and/or travel weight are an issue, it's worth considering, perhaps in conjunction with a small lead line synth (or a VA synth app running on an iPad... and the PX-5S does make for a nice iPad app controller).


  • #4
    I don't know about "Tap - Arpeggiator" (not a feature I ever use), but for piano/EP, strings, VA synths, and at least some kind of arpeggiator, the boards that come to mind are Korg Kronos, Nord Stage 2, and Kurzweil PC3K8 pr PC3LE8. Those Kurzweil pianos aren't state of the art these days, but many people still swear by them, especially in the exact context you mention, mixing well with a live band. I think Kurz has some of the best strings and EPs too, and a very capable synth section. It's also probably the best value. The PC3LE8 will probably do what you want for in the range of half the price of the Korg or Nord options. The board will do a lot more than just what you want, but I think it does a good job at just what you want regardless.

    If there is any weakness to all three of these boards, it would be that none of them have what most people consider to be really top notch piano actions. But they're not bad.

    You may also find that simply no single board has everything you want, which is one reason that so many people use two boards.

    So for example, I agree with the people who said that the CP4 is a strong board, but it will be a little weak on the synth side. So maybe you would add a synth as a second board.

    Lastly, getting back to the actions, you said, "not too heavy action like the Yamaha's" and I'm not sure whether you meant that Yamaha was an example of an action you like or an example of an action you don't like...but either way, different Yamaha actions can feel very different from one another. A CP4 feels very different from the action used in the CP40, which feels very different from the action in a MOXF8.

    Comment


    • #5

      EddieF88 wrote:

      Hey All, 

       

      Trying to find the best stage piano out there.  I love a good piano sound with a great action.. not too heavy action like the Yamaha's.  

      I don't need a million patches that are sequenced and play "one man band" type stuff.  

      Please just give me GREAT essentials:

      1. Piano (that mixes well with a live band - sometimes the sound is great but bring it to a live band / gig situation and it gets lost in the mix.)

      2. Electric Piano (Rhodes / Wurly - that don't get lost in the mix )

      3. Strings -( for church work)

      4. Synths (w Tap - Arppegiotar )  but Quality rich sound like the Roland Jupiter or Virus Access

      Ill pay the money.. I just feel that it's 2014 and alot of the major companies are not really improved their technolgy in the past 10 years.  They just change the buttons and face plate around a little.

       

      Thanks, EddieF88


       

      Our keyboardist chose Roland's RD-700SX because of the action (which felt closest to her small grand), and the action is adjustable, too. 

      Lots of piano voices, all sound fine to us.  She's used string voices often (mostly harpsichord and fiddle), sound fine.  She doesn't do (we don't need) synth, can't comment other than to acknowledge the unit has some of that in there somewhere. 

      We usually run it through the mixer, so there's not much question of getting lost in the mix anyway.

      I think Roland has since brought out a successor model, dunno numbers.

      -D44

       

       

      ************************************************** *********************************

      Old guy, just trying to play through the arthritis...
      - Balance is a virtue; loud for its own sake is not... and loud won't fix bad
      - I may not interpret ridiculous, crazy, or stupid the way you intended
      - Common retail products are never awesome (thermo-nuclear probably is, though)
      Assume the requisite list of stuff...

      Comment


      • delaware dave
        delaware dave commented
        Editing a comment

        "  ... Our keyboardist chose Roland's RD-700SX because of the action (which felt closest to her small grand), and the action is adjustable, too. ..."

         

        Please explain how the "action" is adjustable.  Do you mean the velocity curves are adjustable?  That is much different than the action being adjustable.  Most keyboards today have adjustable velocity curves so I don't see that being an advantage having an 700SX; on the other hand very few have adjustable action, the exceptions I can think of are typically clonewheel-related where for organ the key fires quicker than it does for piano type sounds, but even under this condition the 'action' is still the action.  If it is sluggish I know of no adjustment to make it less sluggish.


    • #6

      Most Yamahas I have found to be great sounding boards.. however, I feel the action is heavy and the bass EQ is a bit heavy. I own a P-120 and always have to adjust the Bass EQ Down on my Roland KC550 or any amp that I wind up using.

      However, I will try the CP4.  Maybe I will like the action.

      Comment


      • AnotherScott
        AnotherScott commented
        Editing a comment
        The P120 action (GHE, also known as GH) is similar to what you'd find in the CP33, P155, CP300, CP50, CP40.

        The CP4 will be different, and less heavy feeling.

    • #7

      Update

      I got the yamaha cp-4.  I love it.  Great sounds and feel.  Cuts through live band.  Great electric pianos and acoustic pianos.  The action is better then my p-120.  The wooden keys really make the piano come alive.  esp in a live band situation.  The sound cuts through even through a mono keyboard amp.  

      Seriously great stage piano.. 

      Thanks everyone for your input.  It helped alot!!

      Ed

      Comment


      • #8

        Yamaha MOXF8

         

         - Full Motif XF sound set

         - 88 hammer action keys

         - 128 note polyphony

         - 8 insert effects....just like the XF

         - You can add up to 1 GB of flash memory

         - it has almost 4000 samples built in it to make sounds and you can stack up to 8 to make a voice, and 

        you can stack up to 8 voices to make a performance......that means performances can have up to 64 

        sounds layered at once.....(at about 2 note polyphony.....lol).....just an extreme example

         - about 33 pounds

         

        CONS:

         - You can load samples (flash) but can't sample

         - no aftertouch

        ---------------------------------------------------------------

        It's really not far feature-wise from the $3500 Motif XF8 and tons lighter.......

         

        The Motif XF has 130,000 note sequencer that DOESN'T have a step sequencer included......

         

        The MOXF8 has 226,000 note sequencer with step sequencer.......

         

         

        $1700 & free shipping and no tax at musicians friend dot com  

         

        Here's a demo of all the preset voices in the MOX (the previous model with 64 note polyphony) but I think all these sounds and a lot more are in the MOXF8......the MOX8 had 2670 waveforms for making sounds and the MOXF8 has almost 4000 and 128 note polyphony and 8 insert effects :

        Yamaha MOX Demo - ALL 1217 voices in 100 Minutes !

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yvhmNmckgg

         

        This link has a zip file with Yamaha MOXF8 photos, voices & manuals including voice names. The voices need you to install a flash board before you can load them as they have samples:

        https://www.dropbox.com/sh/etc4dcb3mj3ucxw/KSjOQFGIRi/Yamaha%20MOXF6%20-%20MOXF8.zip

        Comment


        • #9
          Hi Eddie88,

          In case you're still in the market for a stage piano, we're developing an 88-key (weighted) portable digital piano. Folds in thirds and fits in a travel case. It will be the only 88-key truly portable piano out there. Could be a good fit for what you do. More info here:
          www.groovepiano.com. Thanks.

          Comment


          • #10
            Hey, I'd go all the way with the Nord stage 2 abit pricey, IDK if the action is good compared to other pianos out there, but for all the rest it has IMO the best samples of instruments, even more than SUPERNATURAL Roland sound. also it has arpeggiator and you can dl the JUPITER-8 sample library and other synths and pianos and whatever from their site.

            Honestly I'd go with either Roland or NORD when it comes to pro level digi pianos. I don't like Casio personally because imo it's a toy (I played one of the models in the store) BUT if you don't have alot of $$ in your sack than go for what the guys previously said.

            My practical advice is tho: watch ALOT of videos, read alot of reviews about the products you've been suggested. Then go the store, and play - don't mind anyone just play em all and try to see all the options you already know from the youtube vids.
            Steinway Essex Piano, Yamaha KX5, Hawaii Kai Ukulele, Hohner Melodica and Harmonica.

            Comment


            • #11
              Kurzweil's new Forte is worth checking out. (Full disclosure - I do contract sound design work for Kurz and did plenty of work on this board. I'm not a full time employee nor do I speak for Kurz.)
              It's the most fun I've ever had working on a keyboard project. The new samples brought me to my knees - best I've ever worked with.
              In addition to the new multi-GB samples (2 AC pianos, 2 Rhodes, Wurly, Clav, Frenchi Harpsi, Celeste), it's got a nice selection of PC3 and KORE64 sounds.

              I believe the first units are being shipped from the factory presently.
              Here are some audio demos:
              https://soundcloud.com/kurzweil-music-systems

              http://kurzweil.com/product/forte/
              WeiserSound<br>Keyboard And Pro Audio Sales, Custom Sound Design<br>www.weisersound.com<br>https://www.facebook.com/weisersound<br>weiserdav @ gmail

              Comment

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