Sunday, June 03, 2007

Product Pipeline: Yamaha Debuts New Class of Digital Pianos

Product Pipeline: Yamaha Debuts New Class of Digital Pianos

(MMR Update June 1, 2007 6/1/2007)

The NP-30 Portable Grand Digital Piano represents an entirely new class of Yamaha digital piano. Designed to offer quality, value, and portability without sacrificing the playability of the key action, the NP-30 will be introduced at Summer NAMM 2007 in Austin and includes 76 Graded Soft Touch piano-style keys and AWM stereo-sampled piano voices.

Weighing only 12 pounds and operating on six AA batteries (or a power adaptor), it is the first Yamaha digital piano that can truly be played anywhere. Additional features include transpose and tuning functions, built-in stereo speaker system, and 10 quality voices, including pianos, organs, and strings.

The NP-30 offers Yamaha’s new Graded Soft Touch key action. Though the keys are lighter than the GHS (Graded Hammer Standard) and GHE (Graded Hammer Effect) actions of Yamaha’s more robust digital piano models, Graded Soft Touch provides stronger resistance in the bass side that distinctly decreases as the player moves to the keyboard’s higher notes. This facilitates faster passages with the right hand and heavier playing with the left hand, similar to the feel of an acoustic grand piano. The end result is a playing experience akin to weighted Graded Hammer actions, though less force is required to strike the keys. What’s more, the physical aspects of the Graded Soft Touch action help bring the overall weight of the NP-30 down to less than half of Yamaha’s previous lightweight champ, the P70.

“We believe that there’s a place in the market for an ultra-portable piano-focused instrument,” said Dane Madsen, marketing manager, Digital Pianos, Pro Audio & Combo Division. “Whether it’s for schools, ministries that offer outdoor services, or simply music lovers who want to be able to take a playable digital piano virtually anywhere, the NP-30 offers tremendous value.”

The NP-30 (MSRP: $399.99) is expected to ship in July.