Digital Pianos: As Good as the Real Thing? (Bonus: My Top Recommendations for All Budgets) by mark barkan
This is a guest contribution from Mark Barkan.
The first digital piano was released in 1986, and since that momentous year, digital pianos have only improved. The more recent models are sleek and stylish, and they lend themselves to a variety of uses. Advancements like weighted keys, increased polyphony, and recording capabilities have all helped the digital piano carve a niche for itself in the music world. In the past five years, improvements to digital pianos have centered around more closely mimicking acoustic pianos and developing greater connectivity.
digital piano breakthroughs in the last 10 years!
In 2008, Yamaha released the CLP-S308PE which offered musicians direct access to the Internet. This was a revolutionary development because it cut out the middleman – the computer. In 2009, Roland released the V-Piano, an innovative digital piano that can be tuned and adjusted just like an acoustic piano. Two years later, the company released the V-Piano Grand, its flagship model for the digital piano products. The V-Piano Grand was an improvement over the V-Piano in sound quality and richness, and it gave musicians greater freedom of expression with improved touch keys.
In 2011, the same year Roland rolled out the V-Piano Grand, musicians could finally connect their digital pianos to their iPads with a USB MIDI adapter. This unlocked an entirely new set of opportunities, including a better interface. In 2012, Roland rolled out its newest technological advancement: Roland Wireless Connect, a network that allowed digital pianos to connect with iPhones through Wi-Fi. That same year, Yamaha released the Clavinova CVP-605, which wirelessly connects to musicians’ iPads, eliminating the need for a USB MIDI adapter.
Earlier in 2014, Yamaha announced the release of P255, the first digital piano that has a control app. Devices equipped with iOS can extend the digital piano’s interface by allowing musicians to save their settings, customize their sound, and organize and sort song content. All users need is an iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch. As digital pianos continue to improve, musicians will reap the benefits of better sound quality, and especially better connectivity. These technological advancements ensure that digital pianos adapt to changing times, and they enable musicians to remain relevant, taking advantage of the latest technology.
my top recommendations for all budgets...
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