1. Which of the digital pianos sound and feel like a “real” piano?
All 88 keys digital pianos have weighted keys and use real piano sampling technology, meaning that the sounds produced are recorded sound samples taken from acoustic grand pianos. However, the sound quality varies with the price. A lower-priced digital piano uses lower quality keys, sound technology and speaker system. A highly-priced digital piano uses wooden keys (similar to those of a quality acoustic piano) and incorporates higher sampling technology to simulate the effect of a real piano.
2. How do I protect my piano from dust?
You may purchase an instrument cloth cover from some shops that sell those, or you will probably have to use a feather duster to remove dust. You may also use a clean, damp cloth or alcohol wipes to clean the keys of the piano, followed by a dry cloth to remove moisture.
3. How long does a digital piano function?
In general, if you take good care of it, it may function for decades. Usually, if a digital piano becomes faulty, the keys are the main cause. The electronic components do not usually break down easily. The 'sticky key' problem was more common among digital pianos sold in the 90s and early 2000s. Most digital pianos today no longer have these types of problems, unless the keys are heavily abused (by playing with much force - banging hard on the keys). The 'sticky keys' problem occurs when the inner sides of the plastic key starts to crack, or the springs start to deteriorate. Otherwise, digital pianos or even electronic keyboards actually last long and maintain a resale value.
4. Which piano is better?
All of the popular brands are good. Every manufacturer (whether it is Yamaha, Korg, Casio, or Roland, etc.) has its very own R&D division that designs each brand’s unique piano keys and sound board. It simply becomes a matter of personal taste when choosing the right piano. No two pianists will say the same thing for any particular make or model. However, a high priced digital piano (e.g. the Yamaha CLP series) would usually sound and feels better than the rest. Again, it’s all about the price.
5. Where are the digital pianos manufactured?
Like most electronic products, most digital pianos are made in China or Indonesia. None that we know of are made in Japan, except high-end acoustic pianos (ranging above S$5,000) which are crafted there. However, we would emphasize that the quality control during the manufacture of these digital pianos is very impressive. Unlike a decade ago, digital pianos today have evolved into a unique instrument category with specific features and characteristics.
6. Do I need a digital piano so I can start learning?
Any piano or keyboard with 88 weighted keys should do just fine, but make sure it is connected to a sustain pedal. The CASIO CDP series, KORG LP series or even the YAMAHA P series, are recommended as a good start. Come to our showroom and try out all the different digital pianos yourself. If you have a larger budget, you may consider a more professional digital piano such as the Yamaha Clavinova CLP or CVP series.
7. How may I purchase a digital piano from PBE?
You may either make a full payment in cash, via NETS or by cheque to “Play By Ear” at our school’s payment counter or perform a bank transfer to our bank account. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you wish to do a bank transfer. We currently do not accept any on-line orders or payments.
8. How long does it take for the digital piano to be delivered, once I place the order?
On average, delivery takes about 3 working days following your full payment, if the digital piano is available in stock.
9. Is it necessary to have a piano at home if I learn at your school?
It would be preferable. In case you have a very tight budget and are unable to purchase your own piano, come to our school during opening hours to use our practice facilities for FREE.
10. Do I need to tune my digital piano?
No, absolutely not. A digital instrument will never go out of tune.
11. Why would anyone connect a digital piano to a computer?
Professional players connect the digital piano to a computer in order to transcribe and record songs. There are many 3rd party software like Cakewalk, Pro Tools, etc. that allow MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) recording. Students may also use educational MIDI software that interacts with the piano acting as a MIDI controller, for self-learning purposes. You may also download songs from the internet to your digital piano, if it has this function.
12. I need a portable digital piano; can you recommend such an instrument?
All digital pianos are portable. They are relatively light, and you can move the piano around very easily, either alone, or with the help of just one person.
13. Can the instrument stand be detached from the piano?
Yes, it can. All of the pianos have this characteristic; the stand is affixed to the piano with only a few screws that can be easily removed.
14. What are the 3 pedals on a digital piano used for?
The right-most pedal is the all-important sustain pedal, otherwise known as a damper. The middle pedal found on acoustic pianos mutes the sound during practice. On a digital piano, it is quite redundant, since you can simply lower the volume with the volume control knob. The left-most pedal is known as the soft pedal – on an acoustic piano, the hammers physically move sideways to a position where fewer strings are hit, thus resulting in a softer and less-rich tone. Digital pianos have different sound options that simulate that same effect, thus rendering this pedal redundant as well. Some pianos have 'free' pedals that can be assigned to other functions. For instance, CASIO designed all 3 pedals as damper pedals (in a split mode), where the right pedal belongs to the student, and the left belongs to the instructor, while the center one activates the sustain feature for both people. To reduce cost, some digital pianos come with only one sustain pedal. In short, the only pedal that is really necessary is the sustain pedal.
15. Can I plug my earphones or headphones into a digital piano?
Yes, you can. Most digital pianos today have at least 2 headphone input jacks, one for the player, the other for the listener. A digital piano will be of little use if it does not allow earphones/head phones to be plugged in.
16. Do you have the digital pianos on display at your shop?
Yes, we do. The showroom is located at 245B Victoria Street, 3rd floor. You are welcome to visit the school and try out the pianos before deciding to make a purchase. We do not have a showroom at our Jurong branch.
17. Can I pay for the digital piano in installments?
All digital piano purchases have to be paid in full, either in cash, cheque or via NETS. Unfortunately, we do not have installment plans for instrument sales.
18. What is the difference between Pop Piano, Classical Piano, Acoustic Piano, Digital Piano, Digital Keyboard, and Pop Keyboard?
19. Do you sell 2nd hand (used) digital pianos?
Yes, we do, from time to time. Please Click HERE for the latest list.
20. Do your prices include GST?
No. We are not a GST registered company as of 1 Aug 2015.
21. Do I get a student discount for purchasing digital pianos? If so, how much will it be?
Yes, you do. Students are offered a special PBE price, which is never revealed on the website. Please make your enquiries at the admin counter where our staff can consult our instrument sales file for the relevant student price.
22. Can I purchase a digital piano from the Jurong branch?
Yes, you may order our digital pianos from PBE Jurong. The only inconvenience it that we do not have a piano showroom there.
23. Why buy digital pianos from PBE?
We are the biggest digital piano store, or better said, the only place that distributes the most brands of digital pianos, thus allowing you to compare different types. We offer brands like Yamaha, Casio, Roland, Korg, Kawai and Viscount.
24. Why should I buy a digital piano over a real acoustic piano?