Electrifying!
Mark I Stage Piano, 1971-1973
Maker: Fender-Rhodes Company
Fullerton, California
"Electronified" pianos were first developed for USO concerts in the 1940s. Harold
Rhodes invented his electric piano with hammers but no strings. The plastic hammers
strike metal rods and then electric pickups transform the vibrations into electric
impulses and send them out as sound through the amplifier and speakers.
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DX 7 Electronic Keyboard, 1986
Maker: Yamaha
Hamamatsu, Japan
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Triton Electronic Keyboard, 1999
Maker: Korg
Melville, New York
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XP-80 Electronic Keyboard, 1999
Maker: Roland Corporation
Hamamatsu, Japan
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In the late 20th century, the piano's continuing technological development has spun off
new musical instruments. These instruments show that electronic keyboards are no
longer pianos, since they have neither hammers nor strings. Keys activate sounds
digitally programmed on microchips and the sound can be heard only through an
amplifier or earphones. However, the keyboard has not changed.
In the 21st century Roland releases the "V-Piano" - a digital piano using
Component Object Sound Modeling. Unlike digital sampling, it creates virtual sound
models with a newly developed 88-note ivory feel keyboard with simulated escapement.
Virtual components such as the strings, frame, soundboard, and case are modeled
independently and combined to create the final sound.
V-Piano, 2009
Maker: Roland Corporation
Hamamatsu, Japan
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