Keyboard in the dorm room

<p>S is a soon to be college freshman majoring in jazz piano. He wants to take his keyboard to school with the idea of practicing in his dorm room with the headphones on. He has a full 88-key keyboard in a 5 ft long hard case, so we’re not talking small. Is this reasonable? Also, I’m concerned about security for the keyboard, particularly since he’ll be flying home for breaks and will have to leave it at the school all year. Any thoughts?</p>

<p>My son had one in his very small dorm room for freshman year. He found it very useful for theory. He would get it out when he needed it and put it away when he was done. I don't know where your son is going to school, but it should be reasonably safe over break. He can put it out of sight while he is gone.</p>

<p>Son had similar sized keyboard in a better than average dorm room situation and is very glad. He is a long way from home and we bought a used one off craigslist in very good condition for ~$700 which is an option and if you don't need synthesizer, orchestral sounds etc., you can get a pretty good one for less than that. Reduces the magnitude of loss and son didn't have any problems. They are pretty heavy, so takes a pretty determined theif. Depending on dorm room size, availability of practice pianos and rooms and closeness of practice pianos to his dorm, I would do it if you can. Son is storing his music gear with another student who is local to the university and will like having it to play with for the summer which avoids prohibitive costs of moving via airfare.</p>

<p>DD also never had any problem with keyboard in the dorm. She had a suite so it was a little easier to store it. No problems curing breaks. She really used it to work out music, music theory, etc with the headphones on.</p>

<p>McSon did not take his full 88 stage piano that while portable, was about 6" too wide for available wall space; but instead took a 69 key cheapo oxygen for the midi interface. He could still use it for theory. For piano class, he practiced in the dorm lounge (which had a very nice piano) and practice rooms. In his case, double room, there actually was not sufficient space to set up the yamaha -- but the oxygen was fine on top of his bookshelf until he needed it.
McSon did however elect to take three guitars (electric, acoustic and bass), two practice amps, a korg vocorder, a trumpet, a full sound firestudio interface, 8 mics, three microphone stands and... just about drove his roommate and HIMSELF crazy with the clutter. Eventually, I went down and hauled half the stuff home so they could FUNCTION in the room ;) So the room specs and furniture therein will determine whether or not the 88 is doable. I feel it is much more convenient for them to has as "much piano" as they can fit in the room, but McSon seemed to prefer the privacy of the practice room.</p>

<p>My son was in much the same situation as kmccrindle's--he left the big keyboard at home and took a smaller one--as well as FOUR guitars (acoustic, bass, and two electric), clarinet, amps, etc. It was pretty tight. He may take the big one in the future, but only if he knows there will be space for it.</p>

<p>Do you know if dorm insurance would cover the piano if it was damaged or stolen? Was it covered by the standard dorm insurance policy or did you have to get a separate rider? Or did you just not worry about insuring it?</p>

<p>I brought mine with me. I ended up putting it under my bed when not in use. A lot of things ended up under there when not in use...</p>

<p>Not sure if your s chose Oberlin but my s says the new jazz building lockers are big enough for his keyboard, a Nord Electro 73 which is a great compact gigging keyboard. He sold a huge Yamaha s90es (88 key) and never regretted it. This is especially good for those who like vintage electric piano sounds, rather than trying to "fake" a grand piano. Nords are made in Europe and of metal and wood, instead of plastic like most. Nord makes a compact road case for it with 2 wheels. It's made his gigs much more manageable since he can handle the rig himself. </p>

<p>At Oberlin, there is little need for a keyboard to practice. The piano rooms and the pianos were the best we saw on our visits and the new jazz building has all brand new Steinways in combo spaces, faculty offices and practice rooms. Each room also has a recorder....students drop in a cd and 1 buttons records the session/lesson, etc. Every dorm has a piano too although I think the one in South is a Yamaha grand.</p>

<p>Re: Insurance/dorm question above -- our agent had us create a rider for all musical/electronic professional grade equipment or instruments of any significant value. Didn't cost much (eg. $90/year) but full coverage while at school.</p>

<p>hunt said: "It was pretty tight. He may take the big one in the future, but only if he knows there will be space for it."</p>

<p>hahahaha</p>

<p>So my kid should leave the drums home? . . . for now?</p>

<p>Good time to pick up a used electronic set - they stow better ;)</p>

<p>
[quote]
So my kid should leave the drums home? . . . for now?

[/quote]
It might be possible to squeeze an electronic drum set into some dorm rooms--but a regular drum set? The space probably wouldn't even be the biggest problem.</p>

<p>Most first year students do not need to bring the entire kit anyway, even to store at the music school. Some schools do have drum rooms for personally owned kits, but many just have locked drum rooms with school owned kits. </p>

<p>No one should bring a drumset to a dorm room, because there is neither space, nor an appropriate place to practice. Contrary to a portable instrument, drums need to stay put. </p>

<p>In terms of keyboards, practice should be done on a real piano in the practice rooms. The keyboard is best for composing (with Sibelius, etc) and theory work, and a non-88 key one works adequately for these purposes. I don't think there is enough space for a full size keyboard in a dorm room anyway.</p>

<p>AM, that's almost exactly what S. told me when I kept bugging him about bringing the 88.</p>