Digital Piano Comparison: Yamaha VS Roland VS Kawai VS Casio: Which Brand Is Best? If you’re used to an upright piano, you might find the pedals a bit heavy, but in my experience of playing many grand pianos, they are perfectly adequate. It’s a huge sample, and it’s a really high-quality sample to be equipping with a digital piano in this price range. Alternatively, you can play back WAV and MIDI files (depends on the piano model) directly from the flash drive without loading them into the piano’s internal memory. Kawai doesn’t really have a lot of instruments in this price category – the ES110 (portable) and the KDP110 are pretty much the only Kawai digital pianos you can get for under $1,500. Audio recordings are more universal than MIDI ones because they provide you with a CD-quality audio file playable on most modern devices, and don’t require any additional software, and sample libraries (VSTs) to render a MIDI recording to audio. They sound incredible, and you won’t be disappointed at all when playing using the internal speakers. Note: If you prefer a slimmer and more modern looking design similar to the Roland F-140R and Korg G1, you might want to consider the YDP-S54 model, which is basically the same piano as the YDP-164, but in a different cabinet style. The AP-470 comes with the same key action Casio uses in their entry-level digital pianos, including the PX-160, PX-770, etc. Yamaha have included what’s called VRM Technology, which stands for Virtual Resistance Modelling. 1) Transpose function allows you to shift the overall pitch of the keyboard in semitone steps. This provides you with a full range of expressive capabilities; much more so than on most other digital pianos. However, if this doesn’t bother you, it’s a nice action, with a good feel. I would be curious where the new CP88 would fall on this list if you were writing the article today. While this review is mainly about the sound, I wanted also to go through some other aspects of the piano that contribute towards its’ authenticity. Reply. Hope this helps! This is not Casio’s flagship action, and it appears in lots of their low to mid-range pianos and keyboards. They save space, they’re lighter, they’re cheaper and they don’t require tuning every few months. Compared to the YDP-164’s GH3 action, the PHA-4 feels a bit lighter and is therefore a bit easier to play for beginners that have untrained fingers. What I will do in this review is pick out which digital piano has the best sound. The build quality of the pedal board is poor, and for the money you pay for this piano, that’s really disappointing. In terms of expression, it isn’t limiting, and I think even advanced pianists would get on well with it. The repetition is excellent; I felt no frustrations when playing repeated notes, as the triple-sensor action system is designed to capture each keystroke when playing repeated notes. These elements are usually quite sublte but important if you want to get the fullest, and the most natural piano sound. The concert grand piano sound on the Yamaha YDP-184 uses the Yamaha CFX Sound Engine, which as you’d expect, samples Yamaha’s CFX Concert Grand Piano. Samples are taken from a concert grand piano. It requires very little floor space and looks very elegant and clean. The RHII is probably the lightest of the three, so if you like heavier actions, you might not be a big fan of it. For example, you can load MIDI songs into the piano’s internal memory for playback or rehearsal (if the piano offers this option). Take a look at the table below to see how t… Weighing just 41 kg/90 lbs., it’s easily shifted by two adults, while a space-saving cabinet depth of just 432 mm/17 in. Multi-track recording (2 and more tracks) allows you to record several musical parts onto separate tracks and play them back as a single song. The RH3 is a medium-weight action, which would be a good fit for classically trained pianists, as well as for learners and those who previously played lighter types of key actions (such as organ, synths, etc.). The F-140R is 53.5” wide, 13.5” deep, and 30.6” high. What’s also impressive is Casio’s attention to detail with the AiR sound chip; including things like pedal noise is a good step towards more realism and it’s highly appreciated. ​. Korg’s focus has never been home consumer grade digital pianos. I would describe this tone as a rich, beautiful tone with an impressive dynamic range, and good responsiveness. The G1 Air doesn’t offer a great deal of sound-tweaking options. The F-140R is the only piano on the list that comes with accompaniment styles (72 styles, 2 variations); these will enrich your performance, making you sound like a full band. If you’re looking for a more traditional-looking digital piano, consider the RP-501R model, which is almost identical to the F-140R except for a few added songs and a more acoustic-like cabinet. It’s certainly not a bad action, but I was left a little disappointed. There you have, folks! However, there are some aspects of modelling that have been featured in the Yamaha YDP-184. Bear in mind, though, that with its relative lightness (it’s still a fully weighted action, which feels similar to acoustic pianos) also comes less fatigue and better responsiveness. This is a sampled sound, which uses Casio’s AiR sound source, which I’ve written about before. Note that this list is based on what we believe are the best home digital pianos under $1500 on the market today. Contact Us. It’s certainly not the digital piano with the best sound. Every of these piano tones also has simulated string resonance, damper resonance and key off simulation. In this model, I felt it disappeared far too quickly, and unfortunately this can lead to bad habits such as overpedalling. Spring-loaded mechanism adds more resistance to the keys compared to the non-weighted action. An impressive addition to Kawai’s digital piano line-up, the new KDP110 features grand piano touch and tone at a remarkably affordable price. These 3 flagship tones are sampled from German, Austrian and Japanese concert grands. And is it possible to record the sound of a piano to a computer by such a connection, but will special cabling be needed? Not exclusively does it likewise have Bluetooth, the F-140R has 300 additional sounds to browse. The pedals are incredible; almost indistinguishable from a real Yamaha grand piano. Usually, it’s not possible to record audio via the same connection, but in the case of the YDP-164, you can do that since its USB port supports both MIDI and audio. Nevertheless, at the beginning of 2019 Yamaha decided that it was time for a new generation of YDP digital pianos, so they introduced the new YDP-144, YDP-164 and YDP-S54 models, which replaced the YDP-143, YDP-163 and YDP-S52 respectively. The speakers included are two 15W speakers placed in front of the player. For solo playing on the excellent piano voice included here, the polyphony is fine. Sales & Expert advice 800.606.6969 or 212.444.6615. All of that can be done via the Virtual Technician app that you can easily install on your iPad for free and connect to the KDP110 via Bluetooth. A built-in audio recorder will allow you to record the actual sound of the instrument (native samples) and save it to a flash drive usually in WAV format (Linear PCM, 16bit, 44.1 kHz, Stereo). Some advanced (classical) pieces require a full set of 88 keys. Reply. This is a big deal. This port is often referred to as USB to Host terminal or USB to Computer port. You’ll rarely need all 192 or 256 voices of polyphony at once, but there are cases when you can reach 64 or even 128 note limits, especially if you like to layer several sounds and create multi-track recordings. I’m super happy that Kawai have managed to replicate the sound as well as they have in the ES8. Roland instruments are known for their rich resonant sound, very good bass response and bright character. Speaking of resonance, the F-140R’s piano tones include organic elements such as String Resonance, Damper Resonance and Key Off simulation. They both feature wooden texture finish and look really premium.Even though it’s an entry level digital piano, the KDP 110 is built with quality. I also had some difficulties when playing the GHS further up the keys, which do get considerably heavier (especially the black ones). The action of the KDP110 doesn’t disappoint either. If you need portability, this might be your only option, but if you don’t need the portability I’d suggest looking at one of the other three pianos. It tries to mimic the classic upright acoustic piano look and I have to say it’s quite a success in doing that. Another correspondingly valued model is Roland F-140R. I’m happy to say that the AP-470 doesn’t disappoint in this respect. You can also experiment with your recording by turning off some of the recorded tracks. The AP-470’s speaker system is positioned a little differently to other pianos, being right in front of the player, behind the keyboard. This tone includes organic piano elements such as String Resonance, Damper Resonance, Key Off Simulation and Smooth Release, which weren’t available in the YDP-163. The Roland RP-501R utilises Roland’s SuperNATURAL piano engine, which I’d like to talk about here. So, let’s dive right into the sound on this Kawai KDP110. While the keys are plastic, they’ve been designed with synthetic ebony and ivory finishes, which adds to the premium feel of the piano. They’re as good as you can expect from a portable instrument, and deliver a clean, clear sound, with no distortion at higher volumes. You can’t adjust different organic piano parameters such as string resonance, lid position, or hammer response, as you can do with the Casio AP-470 or Kawai KDP110. Polyphony is the number of notes a digital piano can produce at the same time. The action is fantastic; one of the best by far. All in all, this is an excellent sounding instrument, and one that I very much enjoyed playing. Unlike most digital pianos on this list, the F-140R has a slim, modern-looking design as opposed to the more traditional looking cabinets of the Yamaha and Kawai. Please post your comments & reviews Cancel reply. When I play a note on a real grand piano, I expect the sound to last a very long time when I’m holding the sustain pedal. Depends on your region, you can choose either a Black or Rosewood color. This is not necessarily going to be the piano that I feel has the best tone, as then my personal bias comes into play. However, as you might expect, this isn’t as solid as a console digital piano like the other three we’ve spoken about here. SOLD An exceptional introduction to Kawai digital piano quality. 6) They usually have all the essentials, but you’ll rarely find tons of bells and whistles in these pianos, whether it’s a wide selection of preset sounds, connectivity options, rhythms, powerful recording capabilities, etc. – Roland GP609 digital grand piano $10,999 store discount price – A relatively new model that measures 5′ deep in cabinet depth from front to back which makes it not only the same size as a real acoustic baby grand, but it’s also the largest of all new digital baby grand pianos out there today. I think this strikes a good balance as regards to what most people are looking for. The port can be used for connecting a flash drive to the piano to exchange files quickly and easily. Here, we’re recording the MIDI data (a sequence of notes, their length, velocity and other parameters). Not only does it come with an improved sound engine and additional features, but it also boasts a beautiful cabinet with supporting front legs. If you’re on the market for a console digital piano, you might notice a few common traits they all share: 1) They’re not very portable as they’re mainly designed for home-based pianists who don’t require a lot of moving around. Dazu zählen abspielbare Begleitklänge in 72 Stilen und ein Metromom. Let’s take a brief look at the default concert grand piano sound on the AP-470. Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. It’s actually the most advanced instrument on this list in that respect. It’s a nice feature and I really appreciate it. The USB audio interface is a unique feature found on the YDP-164 which is not available on any of its competitors. Hi! The YDP-164 is equipped with Yamaha’s well-known GH3 action, which you may have seen in some of their other mid-range digital pianos. It’s not too heavy, but it feels as though there’s more weight behind it than the Roland RP-501R we tried earlier. Below is a video where you can compare the sound quality of Kawai, Yamaha and Roland on their digital pianos: Kawai ES110 vs Yamaha P115 vs Roland FP30 Portable Piano Comparison Demo. 6:45. Some people describe this tone as a hybrid between Steinway, Bösendorfer and Yamaha grand pianos, with its mid-range leaning more towards the Steinway and the thunderous bass that resembles the Bösendorfer grand. There’s really nothing wrong with this keyboard if you’re on the market for an entry-level digital piano, but since the AP-470 is in a slightly different category, I’d expect some kind of improvement over its lower-end counterparts. It’s by no means bad, but it’s just not quite at that level. This is thanks to Roland’s SuperNATURAL piano sound engine, which we’ll get onto later, but it’s also due to the speaker set that Roland have included. 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