Digital piano owners?
Hi guys and gals,
Do any of you own a digital piano? Preferably purchased within the last 5 years or so... if so, why did you go with the one you bought? I'm ready to get back on the piano train to give myself some different perspective from guitar, but am a little overwhelmed with choices.
I own a music school, and we use digital pianos in our studios. At the moment we have three different brands:
A Williams, which I do NOT recommend. We picked it up on Craigslist, not realizing it was the house brand of Guitar Center. It's impossible to get parts, which is a big issue because our instruments get such heavy use. I've had to rewire the volume control, make some case repairs, and cobble together pedal parts.
A Weber that we also picked up on Craigslist. It's built like a tank (and weighs like one too, easily 150#). I've had to do some minor repairs to the key action, and will have to replace one of the key mechanisms soon. But that's after 8 years of heavy use, over 10,000 hours of playing time at the school. And we bought it used, so who knows how it was treated before we got it?
Three Casio Privia PX-860s http://www.casio-usa.com/products/Digital_Pianos_%26_Keyboards/Privia_Digital_Pianos/PX-860/ - we've standardized on this model, and we'll use it for any future additions until something better comes along. The "touch" is great, and it's got a good sound. All three pedals have good function. There are two downsides: first, it's not very deep and it's quite top-heavy, so it needs placement against a wall or it will feel rickety. Second, the pedal mechanism has a lot of plastic parts, and parts are sold by only one vendor in the US... and they don't sell individual parts for the pedal mechanism. I'd have to buy an entire pedal assembly, which is priced pretty steeply. But I've only had one of the three have pedal problems, and I have been able to keep it going with a bit of creative engineering.
Your particular application might have different needs than ours. My top priorities are: a touch that duplicates the feel of an acoustic piano, a sturdy construction, and a good sound. If I were using it to gig, it would be sound first, and portability second - none of our pianos are easy to move around. The Privias weigh somewhere around 90#, but being top-heavy and not very deep it's a bit of a pain - for gigging I'd probably be looking at one of their more portable models, or something similar like a Yamaha.
Here's a website that gives you comparison specs on many different digital pianos: http://www.emusician.com/gear/1332/the-world-of-digital-pianos/33539
Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL
Casio Privia PX-860
If you're looking for a compact, but full sounding digital piano with a realistic touch, this may be what you're looking for. The basic sound of the grand is very realistic from very, very soft to very, very loud. The 20W/channel amplifier actually gets this digital piano almost as loud as a true, acoustic grand piano which is unusual for most digital pianos. The keyboard has nicely weighted keys that are comfortable to play. The opening lid feature sounds like a gimmick, but it does have a noticeable impact on the sound. The reverb effects are varied, but the subtler ones add to the overall sound.