January 23, 2008
| by Rachel Cericola
Yamaha’s new press release says: “In the early 20th century, when the radio replaced the player piano as the dominant source of home entertainment, the era of parlor music came to an unceremonious end.” Say it ain’t so!
Well the piano is striking back—and not in a scary, “Maximum Overdrive” sort of way. Yamaha’s Disklavier looks like a piano and even produces music. However, you don’t have to lift a finger.
Disklavier is like a high-tech player piano, which streams music through the power of Wi-Fi. Yamaha says it even has video capabilities, although we have no clue what those could possibly be. Do you watch a movie as you are faking your piano talents? It would certainly give that full-color LCD touchscreen something nice to do.
New software for the product, the Disklavier 2.0, includes DisklavierRadio and the DisklavierMusicStore, which streams web radio or allows users to purchase specific tracks in which to bust a move. A built-in 80GB hard drive should store enough music to creep your friends out plenty.
The pianos start around 10 grand, or you can make like Jerry Lee Lewis if you’ve got $150,000 to burn. The 2.0 upgrade is free, but the DisklavierRadio option runs another $19.95 a month (or $200 a year.).
Over the past 15 years, Rachel Cericola has covered entertainment, web and technology trends. Check her out at www.rachelcericola.com.