“ Brand: Yamaha „
This keyboard has been a life saver for me. Yamaha have accurately created a life-like piano, and then enhanced it hugely.
Firstly, and most notably, the thing that separates this keyboard from most of the crowd is the weighted keys. Of course this is something that you will have to splash out a little more for, but a the end of the day, to replicate the piano feel, this is a MUST when buying a keyboard. They have both the sensitivity and feel of real keys.
The variety of sounds the keyboard produces is great, although I barely use them, it is great to play around sometimes and have some fun. In addition to this they have many rhythms, however, the best aspect of this is the metronome button where you push the button to the speed you want and the keyboard mirrors this speed in a rhythm.
The pedal has to be bought separately, but is also a necessity. The piano can be put on a moveable stand and transported anywhere.
For me, to pay even anything up to £600 for this is great, but you can get it cheaper in many places.
I have owned this piano for two years now after having switched from my acoustic baby grand piano and an old upright piano. Reason for the switch was simple, I move around a lot and this allowed me transport my piano in my car =) saving on van rental and cost of tuning after each move.
Feel of the keys:
For the pianos I have tried under £2000 this is the best one for me by miles but it all comes down to personal preference. I find the keys are accurately weighted and touch sensitivity is good allowing you to make use of all those crescendos and staccatos in the music.
Basing this on the main voice (portable grand piano); The sound is very good for the price and sounds best when speakers are on half to three quarter volume. Ideally, if the piano is being used in a bedroom for example with carpets and duvets etc that will absorb sound I would recommend using a decent set of headphones, Personally I use the Senneheiser HD-201 which cost <£15 and to me the sound seems perfect for a piano, not quite concert grand or Clavinova but better than most upright pianos.
Other voices will vary in sound quality but I particularly like the flute and orchestra accompaniments which sound very good with the main voice and really enhance the audible experience.
Features and voices:
Being able to record you music, play two instruments at once, play with backing music (can make your own, pre-installed ones or internet) and even learn how to play pieces via a built in tutorial system showing hte music on a screen and guiding you how to play it make this piano perfect for beginners and people who just want a personal piano,
Other features include 500 voices, a lot of these are stupid like gun fire and running water etc but there are plenty of flutes, violins and saxophones etc too. I would say <150 voices are useful and personally I only use about 20 of them.
You can upload midi files via the USB port at the back and transfer data (such as the music you played) to and from a PC via the same port. I have not tried connecting to other midi devices but it is possible though yet again it uses the usb cable not a normal midi cable, I doubt the adapers would be that expensive but I don't know.
I have had it for two years and taken the stand apart abut 4 times, it is showing no signs of wear or tear.
I mentioned some on this earlier but just to make it clear you can load up to 5 personal midi files onto the piano at a time (note that songs you record yourself playing count as midi files also). Not a lot but you can always transfer the data to and from a memory stick left permanently in the usb slot.
* this piano is capable of playing xglite format/voices =). It can also play full xg but will reduce them to xglite.
Would be nice to have a bigger screen if your going to use it to display music. Although sometimes used as a stage piano its not the most portable digital piano out there. Only a sustain pedal.
32 polyphony - some will tell you this is not enough but after playing the piano for 14 years and this piano for two years I have found no problems with 32 polyphony if all you want is to play the piano with a little backing music or an extra instrument or two.
Don't waste your money on the BASE end Clavinova pianos, this piano uses the exact same technology but for a fraction of the cost (why? beats me)
The two major digital piano makes are Yamahaa and Roland. Personally I don't like Roland pianos but if you feel Yamahaa aren't right for you then try Roland.