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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88

Postby OldFather » 12 Dec 2017, 02:41

lawman wrote:I hope I'm not being too pushy about this


Not, not at all, all opinions and advice welcome. I greatly appreciate your help.

At the end of the day I'll make the choice, but I prefer to do that as well informed as possible. As my Wife will tell you "I'm a detail person" !!

lawman wrote:52 pounds is just too much to be moving around on a regular basis


Yes, that bothers me a lot.

Her Bedsit is very ergonomic and well laid out, but as such any extra "furniture" is going to be in the way, so its going to be a question of "Want to play, get it out" rather than just "sit at it and play". One semester done, two to go this year, and thereafter she will be in "Digs" (half a dozen of them renting a house), so will then have enough space to leave it set up (and also Digs will be chosen on the basis of having room for Marimba & Xylophone too ...) so not TOO long to compromise until then.

Only other thought is to have a stand with wheels on, but she may not thank me as currently her keyboard (which is rubbish, but all we had available at the time) is lent against the wall rather than pushed against the wall ...

Agree with you about Yamaha P255:

Much lighter
Great action and sound
Same piddling speakers as other keyboards (the FP90 is the only one I've seen with decent onboard AMP/Speakers)
... but maybe "good enough" for solo practising
.. plug in external monitor speakers when flatmates wants a sing-along :)
FP90 has a much bigger sounds palette

She would probably be happy solo-practising with headphones. (We're back to the Nord I think?!!)

I spoke to a specialist music shop today to see if they could persuade me one way, or the other. They suggested I consider the Kawai ES8 - which wasn't even on my list ...

Watched some YouTubes and read-up about it, and it looks very nice, and a lot of people seem to prefer it.

If anything I think its made my mind up that weight is the most important thing, ease of use probably sensible (impatient daughter), and trade it in in a few years for something more advanced when she has a home for a keyboard that can stay in one place, on a sturdy stand.

23.6kg £1,579 Roland FP90
22.5kg £1,293 Kawai ES8
18.2kg £2,098 Nord Piano 3
17.3kg £1,079 Yamaha P255
11.8kg £478 Yamaha P115

Had crossed the P115 off my list as Touch not good enough ... but maybe that lightweight, and price, make it right for a short-term compromise.

lawman wrote:Will she have a chance to test-drive these two instruments in advance?


I'd like it to be a surprise, but I expect the shop will do "swap" if it turns out that she disagrees with one of the compromises I decided upon.
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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88


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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88

Postby lawman » 12 Dec 2017, 10:45

Being able to think of this keyboard as transitional, in anticipation of having more room in "Digs" in the near future, is liberating. Get a pinch-hitter for now, then trade it in for a big bat next year! Looking at it from that perspective, it makes the lightweight Yammy P115 even more attractive. [The Kawai ES8 is another fairly good choice, but way too heavy.] Another alternative I don't see on your list is the Roland FP30 - a little heavier than the P115 (14.1kg vs. 11.8kg), but with some offsetting advantages. It has more preset tones (35 vs. 14), and the built-in amp system is better (2 x 11W vs. 2 x 7W) - in light of the relatively small sound of both of these units, I would guess that the Roland sounds slightly but noticeable better, and not just in pure loudness. Are these boards substantially heavier than your daughter's current one? For a while, I had to lean both of my instruments against a wall like she does, and I dreaded the idea of picking one of those 40-lb guys up and laying it down horizontally to play (a lot of professional players will scoff at that, but I'm 6' 0" and weigh 170 lbs, so I'm not a total wimp). They're awkward to pick up and maneuver and I always feared that I would drop one. Please do not get a white piano. I would talk to my dealer about his store's return/exchange policy in advance, and also ask if they buy back used instruments. Your daughter will appreciate all the time and thought you're putting into this process - let our Wives call us "Detail persons" all they want!
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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88

Postby OldFather » 12 Dec 2017, 18:45

Ah ... more choices! Right, I'll tootle off and have a look at those. I forgot to check the downsize on the alternative brands.

Existing keyboard at Uni, so can't check, but it was the entry level Casio weighted keys. Current equivalent is 11kg, so assuming like-for-like the P115, or similar, would be no heavier

pinch-hitter now, big bat next year!


I'm going to use that one - after I've translated it into local-lingo!

I'm leaning towards first deciding what Brand the Big Bat will likely be - assuming there would be more familiarity transitioning same-brand rather than change brand - then choose the baby-brother, for now.

If I'm going to save a good amount this year I'll get the monitor speakers now, then if the sound is a bit thin for group-fun she can plug them in.
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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88

Postby OldFather » 12 Dec 2017, 18:50

I like the Roland FP30. Yes a bit more weight, but the Bluetooth seems to be on a par with the FP90 (and thus way more advanced than the others), which I think would be useful. Bluetooth play to Monitors saves fiddling with cables, Page turn on Tablet from pedals, all sorts of Midi Fun, and so on. I like the FP90 too, so if I had to toss a coin today I'd say that Roland model progression would be my primary choice.

Pity about those couple of extra pounds-weight
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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88

Postby lawman » 19 Dec 2017, 01:11

OldFather, I don't know if you've already made your selection or not, but you might be interested to know that there's a Roland FP30 being used throughout a Youtube video called "7 Best Effects Pedals for Synths and Keyboards." Also, I just ran across a video review of the Yamaha P115 on the Sweetwater website - it's not the easiest thing to find, but it's there. After you've made your decision, I'd love to hear about it!
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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88

Postby jazzfoto » 23 Feb 2018, 11:43

My question is about the same as the original one in this thread. I would like to know if there is a difference when it comes to the "touch/feel" when playing the NP"1" and NP3. I can get a used NP1 for ca 1k$ and an NP3 for 3k$.

(Background: I mostly play acoustic jazz - have a great grand at home, and actually an acoustic piano that I bring with me for gigs when needed. I have tried "everything" when it comes to digital pianos - and know that whatever I choose, it will be a compromise. But I am a bit tired of dragging around the acoustic upright :-) . I also use Rhodes some times, and would like to use the NP for Rhodes sound as well.

I have studied the specs, and was a bit surprised. As far as I can see the only differences (relevant for me) between NP"1" and NP3 is the soft release - and the "triple switch grand weighted hammer action" vs only "weighted hammer action". (Layers, split, memory etc etc is not important for me). As I understand I can download the latest piano sounds and get the same sound from both pianos.

So my question is: Do you notice any difference in the feel/touch of the keys when playing on these two instruments? And are there any other differences that I have overlooked?

(I live in the country side. Will try the NP1 today, but the NP3 is a few hours drive away.)
Last edited by jazzfoto on 23 Feb 2018, 11:47, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88

Postby huw1952 » 23 Feb 2018, 15:38

Totally agree with previous posts. If you want a true acoustic piano experience then the Nord piano 3 is it. It is like sitting at a proper acoustic piano. No other board on the market does this (and I have tried them all!!). You can download pianos as well and set the board up how you want it. The previous posters are right when they say about amplification. Good quality studio monitors or a p.a. not a keyboard amp. I have Yamaha monitors and HK Lucas nano 602 pa. Perfect.

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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88

Postby solmaster » 23 Feb 2018, 19:57

huw1952 wrote:Totally agree with previous posts. If you want a true acoustic piano experience then the Nord piano 3 is it. It is like sitting at a proper acoustic piano. No other board on the market does this (and I have tried them all!!). You can download pianos as well and set the board up how you want it. The previous posters are right when they say about amplification. Good quality studio monitors or a p.a. not a keyboard amp. I have Yamaha monitors and HK Lucas nano 602 pa. Perfect.

In full agreement here! :keyboard2:
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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88

Postby Dave Ferris » 24 Feb 2018, 09:47

jazzfoto wrote:My question is about the same as the original one in this thread. I would like to know if there is a difference when it comes to the "touch/feel" when playing the NP"1" and NP3. I can get a used NP1 for ca 1k$ and an NP3 for 3k$.

(Background: I mostly play acoustic jazz - have a great grand at home, and actually an acoustic piano that I bring with me for gigs when needed. I have tried "everything" when it comes to digital pianos - and know that whatever I choose, it will be a compromise. But I am a bit tired of dragging around the acoustic upright :-) . I also use Rhodes some times, and would like to use the NP for Rhodes sound as well.

I have studied the specs, and was a bit surprised. As far as I can see the only differences (relevant for me) between NP"1" and NP3 is the soft release - and the "triple switch grand weighted hammer action" vs only "weighted hammer action". (Layers, split, memory etc etc is not important for me). As I understand I can download the latest piano sounds and get the same sound from both pianos.

So my question is: Do you notice any difference in the feel/touch of the keys when playing on these two instruments? And are there any other differences that I have overlooked?

(I live in the country side. Will try the NP1 today, but the NP3 is a few hours drive away.)


I owned the NP88 and then the NP2 for a combined four years. Used them on many high profile gigs, as well as a few recording sessions when there was't a piano.

As mainly a Jazz player coming at this with the history of being fortunate enough to own some really nice pianos, I can without a doubt say the NP3 is a huge improvement over the previous two generations. While not being my favorite keyboard action out there in a portable DP, I'm fairly confident that I could certainly do a pretty hard hitting Jazz gig without reservation on it.

A fwiw -- the DAC improves the sound with each release. It was very noticeable when I had the NP88 and NP2 side by side. Not sure you would notice the difference in a loud rock band with just ok speakers. But in a quieter more exposed context like Jazz trio or doing Ballads accompanying a singer - with good speakers- it could be very discernible. I haven't had a NP2 next to the NP3 to check the audio output differences but I assume it would be better -- similar in how Yamaha upgrades on every Motif/Montage generation.

Haven't read the whole thread but I assume good speakers, a solid preamp source and to run in stereo are mentioned to bring out the optimum sound. You would figure by now, that goes without saying but often it needs to be reinforced. ;)

I think it's a wonderful DP -- my only reservation would be the history of the keyboard noise on it. Maybe it's rectified by now, I would hope so.

If you indeed are a huge fan of the *Nord piano sound*, lucky enough to get a *good one*, again have good speakers along with a quality preamp source that won't muck up the signal chain -- I can't see you being disappointed. Good luck with it. :)
Last edited by Dave Ferris on 24 Feb 2018, 21:21, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Nord Piano 3 vs. used secondhand Nord Piano 88

Postby jazzfoto » 24 Feb 2018, 22:38

Thanks for very useful comments!

Yesterday I had a two hour drive (each way) on narrow roads along the fjord to have look at a NP88. I knew I had this week end free for testing it out, and that there would be some time before I could try the NP3. So I just bought it… If I had seen your comments before I got there - I probably would have waited. However, I might go for a NP3 later on.

After downloading the latest sounds and updating the OS, I think the sounds are not too bad when using head phones (and yes I know - it is all about getting that sound out in a PA). What I miss most - sitting next to an acoustic piano - is a bit more sensitive keys - which I understand is improved in NP3. So I will test the NP3 when I get the chance… and then we will see…

Dave Ferries: You say that “the DAC improves the sound with each release”. Probably I have missed something here… I thought that since can download the latest sounds - the output would be about the same? But as I understand you now - that is not the case?
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