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Viewing topic "Opinions on ΥΑΜΑΗΑ s90 - s70 - mo8 etc - BHE keyboards"

     
Posted on: June 11, 2021 @ 06:58 AM
tedsorvino1
Total Posts:  2
Joined  06-11-2021
status: Newcomer

Hi everyone. I’m new in here and I’m not the owner of one of the motif family of keys. But I may become and I think this is the right place to ask you some questions. I don’t intent to waste your time in any way but your input will be valuable.

Here’s my current state. I’m looking to upgrade my M - Audio Hammer 88 as a weighted controller (everything is really cool with the keyboard for the price, but it feels quite heavier towards the end of the keys and I think I would like the keys to be longer, since I play a lot towards the end).

I’m using a weighted keyboard mainly on piano and electric piano vsts in my studio - I’m no pianist per se, just an ordinary all around studio musician who has retired from the live circuit and when I was a gigging musician I was never a keyboard player. But I love to play pianos.

I like Hammer 88 in the first place because it’s not graded and it has great midi implementation and totally professional construction.
I hate heavy and graded digital keyboards. They feel very unnatural to me. I also dislike anything with speakers and cheap plastic digital piano look and construction. Stage Piano yes. And surely metal casing.

The other day I tried quite a lot of instruments around my local market. Most things didn’t do it for me. No need to mention what I didn’t like. Huge list. But I really liked few things. Basically I really loved the newer Yamaha CP 73 - even if its keys are not that long. But I loved everything about it. Feel, classic piano sounds and “nord style” lay out look. I quite liked the Roland Juno Ds 88 feel too. I really disliked the lay out with the pads etc, the whole plastic construction and most of its “modern” sounds and “jam” capabilities. And the Nord Stage 73 semi feel is good too - I don’t like their normal fatar weighted models. Fantastic sounds, the best panel but I think it’s really focused on organ players and a semi weighted action - even if it’s a heavier and really good semi weighted one- is not ideal for me.

Yamaha CP 73 was the one for me. But it’s still very expensive for the use I need it (as a controller) and it can’t be found on the european used market, yet - and I doubt it will appear readily in the next couple of years. So I asked around technicians and experienced players and all told me that if I want something similar I may have to find something of the Yamaha S90 - Motif family with BHE action. They all agreed that the keys feel great and they are on the lighter side without grading. And the keys are quite longer.

Unfortunatelly my local used market has none available at the moment, so I looked around the european ebay - reverb etc. and I can find S70 sx, S 90 se, S 90 sx, Mo 8 even older S 80 ones. I have to admit that most of the prices asked are expensive for 12- 20 years old keyboards with nearly non resale value in the near future - even now. So it seems like whatever I buy - if I buy any of those- it will stay till its end.

I know that if I had one of these I would never use its sampling, sequencing, layering etc. capabilities, or its digital string, brass, guitars or whatever samples. Actually I have some older keyboards - yamaha, proteus- with such things I don’t like. And on the other hand their obsolete and not so appealing lay out design is not a put off either - I know what the trend was the Yamaha look about 15 years ago.

I just need good midi implementation, really good and light balanced weighted keyboard feel and a few good classic piano-keyboard sounds on the side for practice, fun and the odd jam. The bad thing is that I can’t have any first hand experience before I commit to any of these used models.  Luckily enough I have the experience to understand what the condition is more or less just from photos, since I ‘ve made some keybed and other related keyboard electronics repairs during my years, but still I’m pretty hesitant, since they ‘re not coming for free. And as I said I’m looking for an upgrade to a really good weighted controller, that I’m quite happy with.

What your experience is with any of these keyboards as midi controllers? What do you think as a user of any kind? Do they still worth it as studio keys? Which one seems the better option and what a decent price for a used one of each of these models would be nowadays (in either dollars or euros)?

Thanks in advance

  [ Ignore ]  

Posted on: June 12, 2021 @ 07:27 AM
Xeraser
Total Posts:  26
Joined  01-28-2021
status: Regular

“I just need good midi implementation, really good and light balanced weighted keyboard feel and a few good classic piano-keyboard sounds on the side for practice, fun and the odd jam.”

While I can’t speak for the MIDI implementation if you need a complete controller for your DAW then the XS/XF work exceptionally well for that. Keys-wise I got my XF6 a week ago and I’m adoring the keyboard, even if it’s a synth style keyboard and not a balanced hammer one. Something like an XS8/XF8 (8s are always acoustic piano-style keys) would be ideal in your case but the prices for those are still extremely high. IMHO you should look at the S90ES. That S700 piano it has is exceptional even to this day imho (then again, I’m the kind of guy who thinks that sounds don’t really age unless they’re on a Roland) and they’re a good sweet spot (~700 to 800 euro here) between the still expensive (at least here) ES8 (~900 to 1000 euro here) and the seemingly depreciating S90XS (~650 to 750 euro here)

I don’t know if this applies to piano-style mechanisms too but I’m suggesting the S90ES instead of the S90XS based on the fact that the ES probably has lead weights. I have a Korg M1 with Yamaha’s old FSX action which uses lead weights and it feels more “substantial” in comparison to most other recent keyboards I’ve tried (with the XF6 being an exception) and is overall more satisfying to play. Most people I’ve talked to seem to prefer the old mechanism with lead too but it might be placebo.

  [ Ignore ]  

Posted on: June 12, 2021 @ 11:02 AM
tedsorvino1
Total Posts:  2
Joined  06-11-2021
status: Newcomer

Thank you very much for your kind advice Xeraser. I will keep it in mind. I haven’t got many things to suggest since I haven’t got any idea how these keys work.
But apparently all these models I mention have a weighted piano action called BHE. And price wise, as far as I can see in the european used market, the cheapest are s80, then MO 8, then S90es, then S70xs, then S90xs and the motifs are even more expensive. Especially the xf8.
Thanks for the input.

  [ Ignore ]  

Posted on: June 16, 2021 @ 01:31 PM
Xeraser
Total Posts:  26
Joined  01-28-2021
status: Regular
tedsorvino1 - 12 June 2021 11:02 AM

Thank you very much for your kind advice Xeraser. I will keep it in mind. I haven’t got many things to suggest since I haven’t got any idea how these keys work.
But apparently all these models I mention have a weighted piano action called BHE. And price wise, as far as I can see in the european used market, the cheapest are s80, then MO 8, then S90es, then S70xs, then S90xs and the motifs are even more expensive. Especially the xf8.
Thanks for the input.

Since you need the balanced hammer and you’ll use it primarily as a master keyboard the S90ES is probably the best choice. I’ve heard that people who switched from the S90 to the XS/XF still prefer the S90’s version of the S700 piano, even if it’s available (and improved?) on the XS and XF too. I’ve never owned an S90ES but I’ve tried both versions of the S700 (the one from “Inspiration in a Flash” and the one from the “Ultimate Piano” pack) on my XF6 and I adore it. As far as I know the S90ES has a few effects or something that are specifically used for its S700 but don’t quote me on that.

  [ Ignore ]