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  2. Sherlock Holmes The Voice
  3. CP Series Stage Pianos
  4. Wednesday, 13 March 2019
Let me start by saying that every instrument I own is Yamaha. I was super excited to upgrade my digital piano but I'm somewhat disappointed in Yamaha Synth department.

As long as I remember, since I managed to earn enough money to buy gear, I was never happy with the Organ sounds in Yamaha products. Couldn't Yamaha Synth department put decent Organ sounds and add a proper interface with drawbars to CP88?

I was expecting some improvement and more complex sound synthesis instead of pure AWM which is currently offered in Yamaha synthesizers. This device is very restricted in terms of adding/editing voices so it makes sense to have a better set of features and sounds.

Also, I was hoping to see longer samples with all the 88 keys sampled. P515 seems a better option for me but I would rather use my current digital piano and wait may be some more time to see something with a proper set of features.

It's so disappointing to see Synth department is parsimonious in utilizing the available technology.

Still, a nice instrument but not my kind of gear.
Responses (11)
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I have to say after demoing both the cp73 and cp88 boards i was extremely impressed by the piano features and the feel but totally underwhemled by the sub section, i know this is a stage piano but come it is 2019! The lack of any organ control and a decent set of samples is appalling in my view, i guess they expect you to be using MainStage or maybe midi to a nord? I do think it is a great instrument but i am put off by the lack of features in the sub section , will keep my wallet safe until they sort this out or not!!
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 1
Blake
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Sorry for your disappointment. If you would like to participate in design please feel free to join our YamahaSynth Ideascale forum here:

https://yamahasynth.ideascale.com

A word about CP73/88...I wonder if either of you ever owned a classic CP80, Rhodes or Wurlitzer. Those didn't have drawbars ether or complete organ functions. The design of this instrument was meant to be first and foremost a Stage Piano inspired by THOSE types of instruments, and the Sub Section does not say "Drawbar Organ" Section, nor does it have drawbars or a waterfall keybed like a drawbar organ. We found that the vast majority of keyboardists we researched (artists, gigging musicians, etc) used two keyboards: One for pianos, one for organs/synthlead etc. This is how I personally work as well. The "all in one" concept is not what CP is about. Additionally creating something like this would have driven the cost up and we wanted to keep this product affordable. Lastly, with the rotary effect engaged, I don't find the organs "appalling" for those occasions where I would need an organ...occasionally, and your an independently control the volume of the organ and the rotary speaker. If I was doing an organ gig...well, I'd use the MODX7. BTW, that is my rig: CP88 on the bottom, MODX7 on the top for other things.

As to using MainStage...CP73/88 have USB MIDI and audio so you can do this without the need for an external interface.

MIDI to a reface YC...You can do that you know, and you can play those sounds from the CP73/88 for a fraction of the cost of many of the all in one instruments.

Anyway, thanks for the feedback, please share on Ideascale for it to be heard in the proper format.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 2
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
It is probably very difficult to agree about what is a good piano in an electronic instrument more even to say which is the best piano.

This is mainly due the piano sound, more than in other instruments, is affected by the "point of hearing" or the listener perspective about which is the ideal distance for to hear the instrument.

Also the piano is not only "sound" but although a lot of mechanical noises that give character to the sound and that vary widely with the change of position of the listener.

And at the end is the personal taste of each one and the purpose that each person will bring to the instrument.

In my opinion the CP88 is not a good piano it is an impressive one that is not the same, an instrument that kicks your face, in the same way that Roland pianos do (with the exeption of the V-Piano).

Probably this approach could be useful for pop and rock music played on stage, where subtleties are not important.

But if you want to experience in an electronic instrument, an experience that can drive you closer to the "real thing", the Physical Modeling sound generation engine of the CP4 is the truth.

It is not spectacular it is genuine.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 3
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
With the OS update, I'm revising my opinion. Yamaha showed that users may get further upgrades which is sweet!

I'm taking my chance to re-state that my point was not to condemn Yamaha (unfortunately it may sound like that). My point is about what musicians expect from a company with a history of making iconic musical instruments.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 4
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Sorry for your disappointment. If you would like to participate in design please feel free to join our YamahaSynth Ideascale forum here:

https://yamahasynth.ideascale.com

A word about CP73/88...I wonder if either of you ever owned a classic CP80, Rhodes or Wurlitzer. Those didn't have drawbars ether or complete organ functions. The design of this instrument was meant to be first and foremost a Stage Piano inspired by THOSE types of instruments, and the Sub Section does not say "Drawbar Organ" Section, nor does it have drawbars or a waterfall keybed like a drawbar organ. We found that the vast majority of keyboardists we researched (artists, gigging musicians, etc) used two keyboards: One for pianos, one for organs/synthlead etc. This is how I personally work as well. The "all in one" concept is not what CP is about. Additionally creating something like this would have driven the cost up and we wanted to keep this product affordable. Lastly, with the rotary effect engaged, I don't find the organs "appalling" for those occasions where I would need an organ...occasionally, and your an independently control the volume of the organ and the rotary speaker. If I was doing an organ gig...well, I'd use the MODX7. BTW, that is my rig: CP88 on the bottom, MODX7 on the top for other things.

As to using MainStage...CP73/88 have USB MIDI and audio so you can do this without the need for an external interface.

MIDI to a reface YC...You can do that you know, and you can play those sounds from the CP73/88 for a fraction of the cost of many of the all in one instruments.

Anyway, thanks for the feedback, please share on Ideascale for it to be heard in the proper format.


SO, it's OUR JOB as consumers to help design the product? It seems to me that you are going to great lengths to defend and justify a product which is obviously lacking. I shouldn't have to SUPPLEMENT a $2,500 slab with that many peripherals, which ANY OTHER SLAB in its class comes with. To call this "affordable" is a stretch. My ancient P-155 is adequate as well, but I only gave 800 for it. By the time you add all of your proposals, might as well just buy a Nord.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 5
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
It is probably very difficult to agree about what is a good piano in an electronic instrument more even to say which is the best piano.

This is mainly due the piano sound, more than in other instruments, is affected by the "point of hearing" or the listener perspective about which is the ideal distance for to hear the instrument.

Also the piano is not only "sound" but although a lot of mechanical noises that give character to the sound and that vary widely with the change of position of the listener.

And at the end is the personal taste of each one and the purpose that each person will bring to the instrument.

In my opinion the CP88 is not a good piano it is an impressive one that is not the same, an instrument that kicks your face, in the same way that Roland pianos do (with the exeption of the V-Piano).

Probably this approach could be useful for pop and rock music played on stage, where subtleties are not important.

But if you want to experience in an electronic instrument, an experience that can drive you closer to the "real thing", the Physical Modeling sound generation engine of the CP4 is the truth.

It is not spectacular it is genuine.


I agree. I own the CP4, and I see no reason to "upgrade" to a Nord wannabe (which is quite lacking)
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 6
Blake
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Hi Davey,

Of course it is not your job as consumers to design a product, but we want to hear from you. That's the reason why we started the Ideascale forum.

A few other points:

"t seems to me that you are going to great lengths to defend and justify a product which is obviously lacking. I shouldn't have to SUPPLEMENT a $2,500 slab with that many peripherals, which ANY OTHER SLAB in its class comes with. To call this "affordable" is a stretch. My ancient P-155 is adequate as well, but I only gave 800 for it. By the time you add all of your proposals, might as well just buy a Nord."

Your first point that the product is obviously lacking...I wholeheartedly disagree. I love how it feels, I love how it sounds and I actually do prefer it over the CP4 both because I think the CP88 pianos sound and play better (there were some definite improvements to the sound and response) and because of the interface. I personally do not play organ from a weighted action keyboards, so to me I'm not missing the organ. THIS IS ALL SUBJECTIVE...completely my opinion...but it is how I feel. I'm not going to great lengths here...I really love the CP88. And just to be clear: I really love the CP4 too! I played lots of gigs on it and it served me well. But the interface improvements and sound improvements on the CP88 won me over.

Look, I understand and completely appreciate that many people are disappointed that the CP does not have the drawbar organs they want. I GET IT. Ideascale is an opportunity for people to state their opinions. And honestly I would think you would appreciate the opportunity to submit your thoughts in that type of forum.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 7
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Blake - I really do appreciate your candor and willingness to express initially being underwhelmed by some Yamaha products because they were missing certain features that past products had. I'm referring to some comments you made in the "Behind The Synth" series. This honesty and willingness to be critical of Yamaha gives me the feeling there is an advocate that can relate to my ("our" ) experiences. Thanks for your continued support and general approach to tackling the varied and sometimes opposing needs of the customer base.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 8
Blake
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Thank you Jason. I appreciate the comment.

To anyone and everyone: OF COURSE I understand your issues with our products. I was a musician before I started with Yamaha and I'll be a musician until I'm gone. Let me be clear to everyone--Our engineers really want to build the right product. There is a lot that goes into that process that is considered, and there really is a lot of outreach to many different musicians, producers, composers, hobbyists, etc., when the initial development cycle starts. We really do listen, we really do care and we certainly want to deliver the best product possible. That is the entire reason we started Ideascale. NOT to have our customers DESIGN our products but to have our customer tell us WHAT THEY WOULD LIKE TO SEE in our products.

To keep this in scope with our CP series let me be perfectly clear about the things that I really love about the CP88.

First off: It just sounds better through my system of DXR10s, two of them, in stereo (ALWAYS). I think the reason for that is; A) the engineers in Japan really paid attention to how the action responds with the sound and tweaked both accordingly. There is a lot to that; B) The output D/A has been upgraded with higher fidelity components so things sound richer across the entire spectrum and; C) The DSP has been upgraded with better and different effects. So there are some definite updates right there. But let's talk about usability.

The one-to-one interface is an absolute blessing. That's HUGE...I can't tell you how many times on gigs I just wanted to easily tweak an effect on the CP4 during a performance and came to the realization that I had to drop into an edit menu. Sure, CP4 sounds great, plays great but that really irked me. CP88 entirely takes that issue out of the picture with the interface. THAT is COOL.

Seamless sound switching between performances is a DEFINITE upgrade from CP4. It's very cool and often dramatic to build something, keep it percolating in the music and switch to another entirely different Performance. The way that works is just great.

So there are three things right there that encourage me to "go to great lengths to defend and justify" this product. I ABSOLUTELY love playing it. It is inspiring, it plays and sounds amazing and you know what.. It looks really cool. That turned out to be more important than I thought...

Does it have a killer organ section? No, it doesn't. But where do you want to draw that line about what it doesn't have? It doesn't have an analog synth engine either, no sequencer, no 16 part multi setups...It is a Stage Piano, and to me it excels in that role.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 9
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Dear Mr. Bake:

Let me doubt about this :
"Our engineers really want to build the right product"

If this would be true, at least Yamaha engeneers should have fixed the limitations for to change the MIDI input channels at will or the impossibility of to freely assign/edit the Bank and Program Change of the Performances, for to mention two of the most basic and important design limitations.

This is valid for both the CP series and the Montage.

Both things are simple and easy to program and don´t need complex developements or special knowledges.

Also both are between the most demmanded upgrades by the customers.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 10
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
re: "you legit get 3 grand pianos 2 uprights - laughable range for a stage piano" -- Maybe you don't have the updates installed? You should have 6 distinct grands plus the 2 uprights, for 8 total. (The grands are CFX, Imperial, S700, C7, CF3,G3.) Nobody but Nord gives you more than 8, most give you far less (usually not even your "laughable" 5).

re: "there is no improvement on sound than the MOX range which you can pick up cheaper" -- Of course, if you compare a new model to used model, it won't be surprising to see that a used model can give you more bang for the buck. But there's no way the pianos/EPs of the MOX are as good as the best of what's in the CP, plus there's a different action, and a whole different kind of immediacy from the CP's control surface. All of these things are part of its worth. The MOX has different things to recommend it, it depends what you value more. And, btw, the MOX only has one piano in it (CF3), maybe two tops.

re: " I'll be ditching this thing ASAP and replacing with a Nord. Very, very disappointed, spend the extra money for something decent folks. " -- For some more perspective there, the extra money you're talking about is substantial. The CP73 is $2000. The cheapest Nord hammer action boards is $3200 (Electro 6 HP). If you're willing to go with a larger and heavier 88, you can save a little and get the Nord Piano 4 for $3000 (though in that case you will be even worse off in the organ department than you are with the CP73). And with either of those Nords, while you'd be gaining some things over the CP73, you'd also be losing some things, like pitch and modulation controls, external MIDI zones, some split/layer flexibility, USB audio interface, and sound quality in some of the auxiliary sounds (Nord non-piano-category sampled sounds are limited to a single velocity layer, unlike Yamaha's). Even something like whether Nord's EPs are better than Yamaha's or vice versa is very much open to debate,

If you mostly wish you had better organ, you can also look at the YC73. Or possibly even better and cheaper, since your compliant about the CP's organ is in its sound (rather than the lack of drawbar control, which would have been obvious when you bought it), another way to go could be to take advantage of the CP73's MIDI zoning and add the nice VB3m organ app which runs on iPhone and even many Android phones, which will give you strong organ sounds, if you don't care about the front panel drawbar cotrols the YC73 gives you. That way you also maintain the CP's piano advantages (the YC has "only" 6 of the CP's 8 piano sounds).
  1. more than a month ago
  2. CP Series Stage Pianos
  3. # 11
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