Most people seem to know Roland for the amazing synthesizers and gizmos that make outrageous claims, and actually deliver on those claims and then some more. There is no doubt that they have helped transform digital technology in music equipment and are a heavy weight in their sphere. Ask 100 top bands in different genres of music about the equipment they have used or are using and you’ll find Roland name-dropped plenty of times.

Because of their presence in the music tech arena with more performance related instruments, their more traditional range of digital pianos can often be over looked. The Roland RG-1 Baby Grand digital piano fits into this category for sure. To draw comparisons with a similar product by another manufacturer we should have to look at the Yamaha CLP 265 Baby Grand digital piano. Yamaha are a very well known brand, particularly in digital pianos for the home. At the end of the day Yamaha and Roland are extremely both trusted brands so there is no point me saying that one is better than the other, it is all subjective.

There is an argument that the Yamaha digital pianos mirror the touch and feel, and the sound of a real piano more accurately. Comparing the Roland RG1 to the Yamaha CLP 265 I would find it very hard to find a massive gap in terms of quality of sound or the touch and feel. You’d have to be a Grade 8 concert pianist to notice the difference, and once again it will come down to your own preference.

In terms of features there is not a huge difference other than the RG1 has more sounds, and has 128-note polyphony as opposed to 64 on the CLP 265. Extra polyphony will come in very handy for those complex pieces you might play. The extra sounds, are probably not as important as the main reason you’ll buying either of these instruments is because of the piano sounds.

One thing I should point out, both of these items are very heavy and when boxed are very difficult to handle. Do not ever handle the delivery on your own and make sure that the retailer asks you about your residence i.e. do you live in a flat? Which floor is it on? How wide are the staircases?

If you’re tight for space at home or live in flat that has narrow staircases the Roland RG1 would be a better choice as it is slightly slimmer – however please make sure you check the dimensions and be realistic about whether you will be able to get the piano into your home, without major renovations and the hire of a crane.

If you need some more details on how the specifications of the Roland RG-1 Digital Piano, I would always advise speaking to an official Roland Dealer of which there are a few in the UK. Umbrella Music is one such dealer.

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