Are you looking to play live in various venues, or you simply want a high-quality keyboard to play at home, BUT...
Like most of us you’re not in a position to splash out the cash for a concert grand piano?
Well, you're in luck - because you can get the next best thing when you go for a quality digital piano like the Yamaha CP-4! This keyboard has a true concert grand piano sound, as well as all kinds of other fun features you can play around with.
Let’s dig into the features, benefits, and pros & cons in our Yamaha CP 4 review:
Yamaha CP-4: A Quick Overview
If you’re looking for a digital stage piano that offers the best features and sound quality, and that is going to have a sound and feel as close to a real acoustic piano as possible, look no further than the Yamaha CP-4...
This keyboard features a variety of sounds that come directly from some of the best, hand-crafted grand pianos that Yamaha has to offer. This 88-key keyboard actually has wooden keys, and it is a graded hammer-action keyboard, so you get a response much like that of a traditional acoustic piano.
When you need the sound of a true piano, you can get it with the CP-4. It features Premium GP, which means that the sounds have been sourced from only the very best of the Yamaha grand pianos.
It also has a number of other piano sounds, including vintage electric pianos such as the CFX, CFIIS, and S6. This is a true stage piano that has hundreds of different voices (instrument sounds), VCM effects, and all kinds of cool sounds based on the MOTIF synthesizer.
Yamaha touts the CP-4 as being, “simply the best stage piano Yamaha has ever created.” It has all the features that any musician could ever want, and then some, and it has a sound quality that gives you a true concert hall feel.
Whether you want it for home, studio, or stage use, the CP-4 could end up being one of your all-time favorite keyboards. It is nice and portable, so you can take it just about anywhere, and even though it is a bit on the costly side, it is definitely worth the investment.
You can save a little bit of money if you buy this keyboard in a bundle package. Depending on the seller, you can get a number of important accessories for just a few dollars more than the cost of the keyboard itself.
This way, you get a lot of the extra gear you need, without having to spend a whole lot of extra cash. Everything comes in one box, and you can start playing as soon as you take it all out and get everything set up.
Who is this Keyboard For?
This is a keyboard for the professional who wants nothing but the best. It is going to sound great, no matter what size venue you are playing in, thanks to the powerful built-in speakers.
When you come right down to it, the only thing that is going to sound better is an actual concert grand piano. Whether you want to use this in the studio or on the road, or even to practice at home, this is definitely an option you need to consider.
If you are a beginner or even an intermediate piano student, you may get a lot of use out of this keyboard, but it is likely going to be a bit out of your budget, even if you do get the bundle package. This really is more of a professional, stage keyboard.
If you do want to spend this kind of money on a keyboard for practicing and learning on, this is a great choice, because it does have so many awesome features, and it has the sound and feel of playing a real grand piano. This is something that can really help in the early stages when you are trying to get the feel of playing the piano properly.
What you get in the box depends on which seller you purchase the CP-4 from. The best thing to do is look for sellers on Amazon who are offering bundle package deals.
Some bundle packages come with an adjustable X piano stand, a padded piano bench with storage for music notation, a Yamaha YMR-03 music rest, a sustain pedal, a protective dust cover, and a power supply.
Even if you only get the keyboard by itself, it is easy to set up and use.
See how easy it is in this YouTube video
Overview of Features
One of the coolest features of the CP-4 is the huge variety of sounds. Not only are there a lot of different sounds, you also get a lot of variations of each sound when you use the many effects.
There are traditional acoustic and electric piano sounds, as well as 321 built-in sounds that are based on the MOTIF synthesizer, including organ, strings, and drums.
There are also some pretty terrific samples, including a CFX full concert grand, CFIIS full concert grand, and S6 grand piano. Other features that we like about the CP-4 include:
The control panel of this keyboard is designed so that it is easy to use. There is even a voice category function that lets you bring up the sounds you are looking for without having to scroll through all of them.
You can even store songs in the various categories to be able to find them easier. You can layer sounds, split the keyboard, and more, simply by touching a single button. The five-band EQ has sliders and a backlit LCD display, as well as a scroll wheel, making it easy to use as well.
The keys are made from natural wood, and the tops are made so that they look like real ivory. These are not textured keys. They do have graded hammer action, so the low keys are heavier and the higher keys are lighter.
This gives the CP-4 the feel of a traditional acoustic grand piano. There is also a damper sensor that lets you play the same note over and over again, perfectly articulated, without the need to use a sustain pedal to blend the sounds.
The electric piano sounds are created using a Yamaha-developed technology known as Virtual Circuitry Modeling (VCM).
This re-creates the sounds using digital reproduction of components in electrical circuits, including resistors and capacitors, so it has the quality of analog sound that makes it much more realistic than that of other keyboards in the same price range.
This keyboard has record and playback features that are easy to use. These features use a thumb drive that you insert into a rear panel socket. Then, you only have to use play, record, and stop to create recordings that are stored onto the thumb drive. What is really neat is that you can use the built-in metronome, even while recording, and the sound is not going to be picked up.
How to use the Yamaha CP-4
You can take this keyboard out of the box, plug it in, and start using it right away. If you choose to buy the CP-4 in a bundle package, you will be able to set it up on its own adjustable stand, and there is also a comfortable, padded piano bench to sit on while you play.
Other accessories that come with the bundle package include a Yamaha YMR-03 music rest, a sustain pedal, and a dust cover. Once you get everything all set up, it is just a matter of plugging it in and turning it on, and it is ready to use. Check out this video demonstrating the sound quality of the CP-4.
Comparisons With Other Popular Models
CP-4 and CP-40
Now it is time to take a look at a few other quality, professional keyboards, and compare them with the CP-4. Let’s start with the difference between the Yamaha CP-4 and CP-40.
The CP-40 is basically the next step down from the CP-4. It has the only CF grand piano sound, and all of the other electric piano sounds, as well as other sounds, but not as many variations as its big brother, the CP-4.
If you are looking to spend less money, this is a better option than the CP-4, but, it just doesn’t have the same quality. For instance, the keys are plastic, whereas on the CP-4 they are made from wood. There is a three-band EQ, but there are no XLR outputs.
CP-4 and RD-800
Now we will look at the Yamaha CP-4 vs the Roland RD-800. Roland is a big name in keyboards and digital pianos, and the RD-800 has a lot of great features. It has far more sounds than the Yamaha CP-4 (over 1,100).
This keyboard has Roland’s Progressive Hammer Action, and the keys actually feel like real wood (but, they are real wood on the CP-4). One thing we do prefer on the Roland is the control panel, which is laid out well and easy to use.
CP-4 and RD-2000
The next comparison is Yamaha CP-4 vs Roland RD-2000. This keyboard has keys that are made with a wood and plastic hybrid, and they feel like real ebony and ivory. There are 88 keys, and the PCM sound generator. What we like about this that the Yamaha CP-4 doesn’t have are the two independent sound engines: V-Piano Technology and SuperNATURAL.
This keyboard also has premium action, and the controller features are quite advanced. But, it does cost more than the CP-4, so if you do not need these extra features, it may not be worth the price.
CP-4 and nord stage 2
Now we take a look at the Nord Stage 2 keyboard. The first difference that you will notice between this and the CP-4 is the color.
This keyboard is red, so it is really going to stand out. As for features, it does have a few that you won’t find on the CP-4, but at the same time, the CP-4 has features that aren’t on the Nord Stage 2, such as the ability to use voice commands rather than pressing buttons to activate the features you want. But, it does have some pretty nifty editing software you won’t find on the CP-4. All in all, when it comes to the Yamaha CP-4 vs Nord Stage 2, Yamaha comes out on top.
CP-4 and P-255
We have one last Yamaha keyboard that we would like to use in this comparison, the P-255. Even though these keyboards are meant for professionals, anyone can play on this, thanks to the Yamaha Education Suite, which makes it easy to learn the basics of playing the piano.
Of course, this is also a feature on the CP-4. In fact, most of the features are pretty much the same on both keyboards. In the battle of Yamaha CP-4 vs P-255, we think it is pretty much a tie.
Jamiroquai's Matt Johnson tries out Yamaha CP4 Stage Piano
Whether you are going on the road, recording in the studio, or practicing at home, you need a keyboard that is going to give you the same sound and feel of a traditional grand piano. The Yamaha CP-4 gives you that, and so much more.
The sound sampling is recorded from the best hand-crafted grand pianos from Yamaha, and the built-in speakers really deliver on that sound, giving you the feel of playing in a concert hall, even if you are only playing in a small room.