Roland is a reputation and model synonymous with keyboards and digital pianos. Going again to the yr of 1972 – the yr that the corporate was based – you’ll have been hard-pressed to seek out the means to play piano at residence or on the street with out having to spend money on an costly and cumbersome acoustic piano.
Under, take a second to view a number of the greatest digital pianos available on the market, and see how properly they examine to the Roland RP-102 and Roland FP-30.
Roland’s Continued Success
Quick ahead 40 years later, and Roland stand on the forefront of digital piano know-how – providing each constant high quality of efficiency, and worth for cash: leading to a model and firm extensively recognized (and liked) amongst the music group, and certainly the digital piano fanatic.
It may well take time (and quite a lot of cash) to discover a keyboard that fits your must a tee, with every model, line, and mannequin of instrument having their very own distinctive really feel, sound, and options. Nevertheless, we hope that our analysis will assist information you in your path to selecting the best keyboard for you – with out having to fork out for a number of various fashions.
The Roland RP102 and FP-30 are two examples of Roland’s continued excellence creating digital pianos and are definitely each succesful performers at their respective worth factors – nevertheless selecting which mannequin is actually the best keyboard for you could be a troublesome activity, notably in case you shouldn’t have not a wealth of expertise utilizing totally different keyboards.
We’ll examine and distinction the 2 Roland digital pianos towards one another, evaluating every keyboards efficiency within the 4 key traits: Design, the Keys, Sound, and Software program: earlier than summarizing every fashions strengths and advised demographic, and eventually concluding by selecting our general winner.
Under, take a second to view a number of the greatest promoting digital pianos on Amazon, after which see how properly they stack as much as the Roland FP-30 and Roland RP-102:
- Yamaha P-125
- Casio PX-160
- Yamaha YDP-163
- Casio PX-870
- Yamaha P-515
Design of Each Pianos
An enormous a part of rising development revolves across the regular transition of the digital interface management from the physique of the keyboard, to our telephones and computer systems.
Digital Pianos, have historically featured a large number of totally different buttons, knobs and lights on their our bodies, extra in order know-how has superior – permitting for scores of various samples, results, and different sound manipulators – and one has usually been pressured to decide on between a minimal keyboard with restricted capabilities past its use as a piano, or a keyboard not so aesthetically pleasing on the attention, however armed to the tooth with options and customization choices.
For quite a few years, the trade-off between aesthetic and performance has cut up the digital piano market in two – however current advances in know-how (notably the rise of the smartphone) has seen producers start to transition interface management from the bodily to the digital, and Roland have clearly embraced this development: if these two keyboards are something to go by.
Each keyboards function only a few buttons – the FP-30’s bodily interface boasts a reasonably common set of controls for primary parts resembling quantity adjustment, splitting the keyboard between voices, and metronome management.
I need to level out at this level that the quantity management on the FP-30 is the perfect digital piano: one would anticipate the quantity to extend or lower incrementally with each faucet of both button, nevertheless in an effort to change the quantity you will want to carry them down for a brief interval. Its results in lots much less exact quantity management (bodily a minimum of) and feels so unnatural as to be jarring.
The RP-102’s bodily controls are much more primary, that includes simply the facility button, quantity management, and a perform button. The perform, pressed along side totally different keys on the piano, can be utilized to implement the varied options constructed into the keyboard; nevertheless, the keys aren’t marked out, and you’ll have to trawl your approach by means of the guide as a way to work out precisely which mixtures do what.
Each fashions, nevertheless, make up for his or her restricted bodily performance by permitting for management by way of a bespoke app in your telephone. Related by way of Bluetooth, the app permits for customers to regulate their keyboards from their cellular units – which can please some, and annoy others. This digital interface integration does signifies that there are lots of much less obtrusive bodily controls on the physique of the keyboard, nevertheless can result in finicky management.
The Roland RP-102 is a digital piano that manages to include minimal design, while nonetheless making a press release. The RP102 is not at all a small instrument – the physique is 16.three” deep, and weighs in at 6 3lbs – so is definitely a mannequin aimed for these in search of everlasting residence fixture, quite than these trying to take an instrument on the street with them.
The FP-30, in the meantime, is half the load of the RP-102, and is removable from its stand (with an choice for a cupboard type stand for these of you after a extra conventional wanting keyboard). The FP-30 is an unobtrusive keyboard with a small footprint, preferrred for becoming into tight areas.
When it comes to the aesthetic of the RP-102 nevertheless, Roland handle to challenge a level of minimalism that’s increasingly more widespread in superior digital pianos, however definitely no much less spectacular. The piano is constructed into its stand, and is designed in a standard method, with a bigger physique harking back to an acoustic piano.
The aforementioned lack of many bodily buttons signifies that this digital piano seems modern and complicated, and is just out there in black; a design selection maybe impressed by Henry Ford (‘You’ll be able to have any colour you need… as long as its black!’). The FP-30 doesn’t fairly seems as stylish because the RP-102, however is not at all an unsightly keyboard, particularly with the curved edges.
When it comes to design, each keyboards are pretty straightforward on the attention, with a very minimal really feel to each fashions. On this case although, the RP-102 stands because the clear winner between the 2 – the aesthetic is sensible and attractive, with the shortage of many buttons a specific bonus – offered you don’t thoughts digging your telephone out of your pocket each once in a while.
Do keep in mind that the RP-102 is certainly not a transportable digital piano, whereas the FP-30 is lots lighter and has a a lot smaller footprint – so be sure to assess up your way of life and wishes earlier than making a design-based choice.
Roland are infamous when it comes to their dedication in the direction of manufacturing the very best high quality keys on their digital pianos. In case you are in search of a digital piano that bests mimic the texture and expertise of enjoying an actual, acoustic piano: then the larger producers have all the time been your greatest guess – with years of expertise, to not point out giant groups of professional engineers and designers working of their favor. Roland are not any totally different and the keys on each of those modes are excellent.
Most producers will implement considered one of a handful of various key-designs amongst their totally different fashions – with greater priced fashions, naturally, that includes extra superior keys. The RP-102 and FP-30 each function PH-Four Commonplace keys, which, whereas are a design that seem within the majority of their entry degree fashions, are on no account ineffective.
In fact, I’m blown away by the PH-Four Commonplace keys, and I consider supply a few of the highest quality among the many low-mid degree price-point.
The keys are absolutely weighted and have graded hammer-action: identical to an acoustic piano.
In the event you’re not accustomed to this terminology: the hammer-action keys ae designed in order to simulate the precise really feel and slight resistance that’s begotten by enjoying an acoustic piano. Within the case of the Roland’s, inner mini-hammers constructed into the physique of the keyboard be sure that all of the nuance of hammer hitting string on an acoustic are replicated. The weighting of the keys is graded: which means notes on the decrease finish of the keyboard are heavier than these on the prime.
The casing on every of the keys mimics the texture of actual ivories – gone are the times of the off-putting plasticky really feel of the keys of a digital piano. The keys themselves are extraordinarily quiet for a digital piano – which is unbelievable, particularly in case you are enjoying at decrease volumes or via headphones. I’ve been in rooms alongside somebody enjoying their Roland by way of headphones, and have truly virtually forgotten they have been there they have been so quiet, an expertise extraordinary ten or fifteen years in the past.
These options are delicate, but make all of the distinction in contrast with entry-level fashions from different producers. Contemplating each keyboards function precisely the identical keys, there isn’t any clear winner on this regard – nevertheless the truth that the FP-30 combines this with a level of portability means it simply the pips the RP-102 on this class.
If you’re looking to buy a digital piano, the second most necessary factor to think about (behind the keys) is the sound of the instrument. Identical to with the kays themselves, piano sound-design is greatest left within the palms of the main digital piano producer, whom have spent years researching the most effective strategies for sampling and implementing the sounds of acoustic pianos within the digital realm.
The keys of a given mannequin might mimic completely all of the delicate nuances and character of the perfect pianos, however all of this is able to be fairly pointless if the sound generated isn’t sufficient.
Each of those fashions function Roland’s SuperNatural sound design – a extremely intuitive and refined sound that goes alongside completely with the good keys. SuperNatural doesn’t simply pattern the sounds of an acoustic piano being performed at totally different velocities – it has additionally been coded to bodily mannequin some parts of a pianos sound, the mixture of the 2 resulting in a nuanced sound that’s, once more, distinctive on the low-mid degree worth level.
Whereas the sounds processed by every of those two fashions is implausible, the outputting of this sound isn’t fairly on par with the sound they’re each able to creating, though under no circumstances is low high quality.
The audio system constructed into the RP-102 will not be fairly as beefy as one may anticipate, and whereas this isn’t actually a problem in case you are trying to play at lower-mid degree volumes: the shortage of punch within the audio system is noticeable at greater volumes. That is considerably disappointing contemplating its bigger footprint, notably in contrast with the FP-30, and particularly so contemplating many comparable historically styled built-in digital pianos are outfitted with hefty audio system.
The audio system on the FP-30 are of an identical high quality: capturing the subtlety of your enjoying at low-mid ranges of quantity, however faltering at larger ranges.
Whereas each keyboards function the identical sound-processing engine, the RP-102’s failure to include audio system that match its bulkier body imply that the FP-30 is the winner within the sound division. The FP-30s decrease profile, and subsequent portability; imply that this keyboard is far more likely to be participant at decrease volumes, or by way of a set of exterior audio system/PA: and subsequently, meets expectation.
The RP-102 is purchased as a single piece of kit, everlasting and unlikely to be moved, subsequently it’s disappointing the in-built audio system don’t fairly match up with potential consumer requirement.
Now that we have now explored the efficiency of every keyboard within the three key areas to think about when shopping for a digital piano – it its time to decide on between the 2 fashions.
Earlier than I inform you my choice, please keep in mind that my definition of the perfect is subjective. Finally, my opinion as to what’s the greatest or most applicable is subjective – please make sure that you look to purchase the keyboard that’s greatest for YOU. Guarantee to guage which keyboard most accurately fits your way of life and finances. There isn’t any level shopping for one keyboard, which whereas in paper is best than the opposite, does under no circumstances match with your personal wants.
In conclusion, each of those fashions from Roland are very comparable, and supply extraordinarily good worth for cash on the low-mid degree worth level.
The PH-Four keys on every of the fashions is sort of merely beautiful – the sensation you get while enjoying, all of the little nuances of enjoying an acoustic piano modeled adeptly: is staggering.
The RP-102 is probably the higher wanting of the 2, mixing minimalism with a glance that’s each daring and modern: though this comes at the price of portability: and sadly, when contemplating the wants and expectation of every fashions meant purchaser: the Fp-30 come out prime general.
Whereas the RP-102 is a superb mannequin, the shortage of energy from the audio system lets it down, particularly contemplating you’ll have equally adept audio system within the extra moveable FP-30. The FP-30 manages to straddle the road between being moveable and providing a top quality digital piano-playing expertise – combing its comparatively low-profile with an honest interface, high quality keyboard, and sufficient sound.
The RP-102 is a superb choice in case you are in search of a extra historically designed digital piano, nevertheless a much bigger physique ought to be made up for by extra highly effective audio system.