New to... well everything


Joined
Jan 8, 2022
Messages
21
Reaction score
4
Location
UK
Hi all,

So, after dusting off the old keyboard (a Yam PSR-280) that I never learnt to play I though, hell why not, older and in theory more patient I should be able to do something, even if its only learn the Attack on Titan theme to impress my daughter, I soon realised that it was tiny and sounded pretty bad.
To remedy this I invested in a Casio S350 (due next week) - that however means nothing unless I can play the thing, so after seeing a bewildering array of YouTube offerings it was very obvious that I have no clue, not even where to start - hence seeking out a forum - so here I am.

Welcome all, hopefully I won't bug you all too much with my fully newbie questions!
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Sep 6, 2017
Messages
4,636
Reaction score
2,621
Location
Lancashire, UK.
The CDP range do get good reviews and for the price of £400 it scores for vfm.

With the CDP you should get the Chordana piano learning App which also controls certain features of the piano.

It is Android as well as iPad and this is a good place to start.

You no doubt have seen the term RTFM, well to prepare can I suggest you download the manual and read it cover to cover a couple of times.


The above vid will show you how to use the piano.

There are Music Theory links in the forum to help you our on that side.
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2022
Messages
21
Reaction score
4
Location
UK
Cheers Biggles, certainly easier that a Sopwith Camel ;)
lol, though, RTFM - in my job (I'm IT) thats almost a sacking offense!
seriously though, good call - I'll get it and take a look through, it certainly will be a bit of a beast and waaaay more than I'll need in the short term, but as my wife keeps on pointing saying "stop buying the cheap rubbish, just get what you want - it costs less", not that the S350 is top of the range, but as far up as I think I need.
 
Joined
Sep 6, 2017
Messages
4,636
Reaction score
2,621
Location
Lancashire, UK.
JonN
Problem is most newbies do not know what they want.

I usually state the question my tutor asked…do you want to play keyboard or piano, they are two different systems.

Closely related yes, but still different and we are lucky here we have a mix of keyboardist as members for help when you need to ask.

An Arranger keyboard like your Yamaha E series is aimed at users who want to quickly play recognisable songs and that involves playing the backing chords with the left whilst playing the melody line with the right meanwhile auto accompaniment plays the drums and a suitable backing style involving other instruments.

Of the available Arrangers personally I would only suggest a Korg Pa700 or a Yamaha PSRSX700 as the boards to go for if one is totally serious, otherwise a Yamaha PSR E463 or Korg EK50 if budget is a constraint.

Digital pianos at the low price point tend to have limited onboard sounds and no auto accompaniment but yours with 700 sounds is well specced so should last you for many years.

The only Casio keyboards that I have played are a CTX5000 ( not impressed ), a PX S1000 and the S3000 which were good but Roland and Yamaha equivalents to the S1000 were imo better.
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2022
Messages
21
Reaction score
4
Location
UK
Fair enough, I can't recall how many times I saw folk saying buy the P45 - but I just didn't want the smooth keys, still hopefully it'll be a good fit for me, and I certainly do fall into the get recognisable songs category
 
Last edited:
Joined
Sep 6, 2017
Messages
4,636
Reaction score
2,621
Location
Lancashire, UK.
I looked at a video earlier on the CDP which I had watched quite a while ago and it reminded my why I discounted it when I was looking for a DP myself as a stop gap.

The polyphony is fairly small for a DP, especially with all you can do with it. So do put it through its paces and see how it sounds when you max out the number of sounds and notes being played.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Jan 8, 2022
Messages
21
Reaction score
4
Location
UK
Aye, I'd read that - bare minimum really - although apparently some of the others sounds (might be accompaniment or the backing tracks) are rendered in a different channel so don't clash - still, yep, too low if I were doing quite a bit, thankfully twinkle twinkle little star is all I'm expecting to hear for a while ;)

BTW, the newer model the S360 upped to 128, so should remove that obstacle.

To be fair there weren't a lot of choices with my pretty small checklist - 88 textured keys, more than just 10 or so sounds and under £400, in the end I got one for £335 so I used the rest on a Yousician sub.

Total newbie but at least my expectations are limited, funny though how different thing fit different people.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Sep 6, 2017
Messages
4,636
Reaction score
2,621
Location
Lancashire, UK.
The S360 looks even better, the 350 with 64 notes or even 32 with some sounds can easily reach note dropping stage by the time you layer sounds.

Is it the 360 that you are getting?
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2022
Messages
21
Reaction score
4
Location
UK
Sadly not, just the 350 - but still not a model that seems to be known all that well yet.
 
Joined
Sep 6, 2017
Messages
4,636
Reaction score
2,621
Location
Lancashire, UK.
True, the PX S1000/1100 has taken the limelight but that is definitely limited with onboard sounds and the S3000/3100 is up against very stiff competition with the Yamaha DGX and Korg XE models.

No doubt the 350 will serve you well and at £335 you have to have great vfm with it

Good luck
 
Joined
Nov 18, 2021
Messages
59
Reaction score
22
Location
Michigan, US
JonN
Problem is most newbies do not know what they want.
Yup, that's me. I started learning to play with the intent of focusing mainly on synth but now that I've been practicing every day for over a month I am quite enjoying the piano on the old PSR 550 that I use to practice. Who knows what the end result will be so I don't plan to spend any serious money until I have a better idea.

Jon, let us know how you get on with your new Casio.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Jan 8, 2022
Messages
21
Reaction score
4
Location
UK
It landed today - and its not even in the same ballpark as the old midi keyboard I had - night and day.
So, I've been on the app (Yousician) for 20 mins or so and it seems I have all sorts of tendons and muscles I didn't know about...
Still enjoying it and surprised how well I was doing - I guess thats the joy of a gamified training thing - so I wandered off into real music for a mo, got my arsed kicked by it so went back to training :D
Should be an interesting journey.
 
Joined
Nov 18, 2021
Messages
59
Reaction score
22
Location
Michigan, US
The Casio is a dedicated piano and the Yamaha was a workstation, right? So I assume the major difference between the two is that the Casio has weighted keys (and more of them) and the Yamaha has more sounds (but the piano sound not as good?).

I have two keyboards, both non-weighted so I don't have the joy of playing an actual piano but I don't think it matters much at this point in my journey. I'm still working on rubbing my belly and patting my head at the same time :)
 
Joined
Sep 6, 2017
Messages
4,636
Reaction score
2,621
Location
Lancashire, UK.
The Casio is a dedicated piano and the Yamaha was a workstation, right? So I assume the major difference between the two is that the Casio has weighted keys (and more of them) and the Yamaha has more sounds (but the piano sound not as good?).

I have two keyboards, both non-weighted so I don't have the joy of playing an actual piano but I don't think it matters much at this point in my journey. I'm still working on rubbing my belly and patting my head at the same time :)
Not really, the models discussed are either Arrangers or digital Piano’s which have arranger features.

The Casio CDP 350 is alone in the market at its price point, a Digital 88 key Piano with plenty of onboard sounds and arranger features. Yamaha, Korg, and Roland have nothing to match it for features and the new CDP 360 has much improved polyphony which is the number of notes that can be heard at the same time

You have to go up to the Casio S3100, Korg XE20 and Yamaha DGX 670 to get 88 key digital piano’s with plenty of onboard sounds and arranger features.

There availability of a keyboard with 88 hammer action keys, plenty of onboard sounds and arranger features in a portable keyboard is limited to the models above.

There are plenty of other digital piano’s with these features but they are home/fixed venue pieces of kit primarily due to weight and cost. Clavinova series by Yamaha springs to mind as these are £2000+ in price.

The tonal quality of a specific instrument sound varies considerably and becomes either very subjective personally or very technical as to why one is acoustically spot on. There is no one sounds suits everyone, its personal. I am no fan of Yamaha but their acoustic piano sounds are imo the ones to beat, Roland, Kawai and Casio come close with Korg following behind.

It can be confusing understanding the differences in keyboard types so here goes:-

DIGITAL PIANO (entry level)
73/76/88 keys, generally hammer action.
Limited onboard sounds, typically 12, ie 4 acoustic, 4 electric, 4 strings, 4 mixed
Simple to operate
eg Yamaha P125

ARRANGER
61 keys with synth action but the odd model with 76
1000 instrument voices/sounds
auto accompaniment via Styles c200-300+
basically a one man band in a single keyboard
user songbooks and setlists which are fully customisable
eg Korg Pa700

WORKSTATION
61/76/88 keys from synth action through semi weighted to full hammer action with everything in between
2000 voices
often 12-16 layers of instrument sounds possible to create
all genres of instruments and inbuilt drum tracks
fully customisable user saved presets
the most flexible of all keyboards
eg Roland Juno DS, Kurzweil PC4, Korg Kronos

SYNTHESISER
sound generator, analogue or digital in origin
you name the sound and these can create it
desktop versions though to multiple octaves but 37 keys is typical
Eg Moog, Korg Wavestate

STAGE PIANO
a digital piano on steroids with plenty of sounds, memory, flexibility
Eg Roland RD2000

ORGAN
the name says it all, but most will have drawbars either physical or digital
eg Vox Continental

NOW THE RUB
There is a lot of overlap between the categories

MIDI KEYBOARD
no onboard sounds
connects to a computer or tablet
sounds generated are via software or apps.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Jan 8, 2022
Messages
21
Reaction score
4
Location
UK
Wow, seriously - where was that description of the types when I was looking about!

Really good writeup, that should be pinned somewhere - I was aware there were type, but not so many - what's really nice is you provided examples, so I looked up a workstation which would have been the perfect fit - if money were not object it turned out - and found this, which I fund really interesting - maybe if I get really good (which I doubt) and get a massive pay rise (which won't happen) then maybe...

 
Joined
Sep 6, 2017
Messages
4,636
Reaction score
2,621
Location
Lancashire, UK.
Like all activities being a Musician be it budding, improver, talented or not so talented we all suffer from GAS.

I’ll leave you guys to find out what that is if you do not know.
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2022
Messages
21
Reaction score
4
Location
UK
haha, having been into photography for quite a few year I know all about GAS, lets just say its costly!
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Nov 18, 2021
Messages
59
Reaction score
22
Location
Michigan, US
As a guitar player I know all too well what GAS is and I have managed to tame it in recent years. I don't plan to go down that same rabbit hole with keyboard gear :)
 

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Top