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#2787137 - 06/25/16 02:12 PM Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage
dlittle1906 Offline
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Registered: 06/24/16
Posts: 3
Hello all,

So I'm not sure if this has been discussed but I just joined this forum and wanted to get you guys opinion. So I currently have the Motif XS. I play in a couple cover bands and what I'm mostly into is the pianos, electric pianos and mainly synth sounds. As far as synths are concerned, synth sounds that are phat, thick and full sounding! Kind of like that 80s sound synth. I'm not into programming or downloading sounds. The most I do is layer the sounds on the different faders so I would be interested in the sounds of both these boards "straight out of the box"!

Any advice you can offer me would be great. Thanks in advance!

-David

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#2787138 - 06/25/16 02:18 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: dlittle1906]
timwat Offline
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David,

Welcome to the forum!

For what you're describing, both the Kronos and the Montage offer overkill functionality far surpassing your stated needs. There are other units out there with less complexity that will more than provide the things you state - Nord Stage, Kurzweil Artis, Casio PX5s - all of these will be less expensive than either the Kronos and Montage.

Now that being said, if you're choosing between the two, I'm only familiar with the Kronos. I own an original K73, preordered when they were first announced several years ago. It's been a workhorse, an embarrassment of riches...but the acoustic piano is only average. Stellar EPs, good B3 (if you're not comparing it to a true clone wheel), endless treasure trove of synths. And I find the 73 is a reasonable schlep factor, while still providing weighted keys.

Can't offer any intelligent feedback on the Montage - I have yet to even touch one in person.

Tim
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#2787149 - 06/25/16 03:54 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: timwat]
GregC Online   content
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Originally Posted By: timwat

Kronos. I own an original K73, preordered when they were first announced several years ago. It's been a workhorse, an embarrassment of riches...but the acoustic piano is only average.
Tim


Blasphemy ! smile

you need quality stereo/studio monitors


Edited by GregC (06/25/16 04:26 PM)

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#2787155 - 06/25/16 04:25 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: GregC]
RABid Offline
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I've got a Kronos 2 73, an original Kronos 61, and a Montage 76. Here is my take on the comparison....

Piano's and EP's are pretty close. The Kronos 73 is hammer action so that is my preference for piano in my setup.

Organ is definitely better on the Kronos and one reason I hold onto the original 61. For me it is not fun to play organ on hammer action. Montage organ patches are definitely usable, but lacking in controls and missing that nice B3 grind.

Horns. In my view, no ROMpler can replace a horn section in the studio, but either of these will get you by in a cover band.

Both are easy to set up as an only keyboard covering lots of parts. Splits, layers, set lists. It's all good.

Integrating with other keyboards. This is my big disappointment with the Montage. I'd love to sit it on top of an 88 controller and play piano parts with the controller while using the Montage for other parts. Unfortunately the Montage does not work well as a sound source to be driven by multiple keyboards.

Either one would be great for general use in a band, but if I had to choose just one it would be the Kronos. Mainly because of the lack of MIDI input routing, but also because of the organ patches.
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#2787160 - 06/25/16 04:51 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: RABid]
ElmerJFudd Offline
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Quote:
currently have the Motif XS. I play in a couple cover bands and what I'm mostly into is the pianos, electric pianos and mainly synth sounds.


No mention of organs which IMHO would be a pretty clear scale tipper for the Kronos whose CX-3 is more flexible and generally a better emulation than anything Yamaha has done for a clone, even on the Montage surprisingly (since it seems to have been post reface YC).

For synths, both these keyboards are loaded with presets and capable of covering anything you would possibly need.

For APs, EPs, both of these keyboards would similarly have all the bread and butter stuff.

Which included sounds without editing are preferable? Endlessly debatable.

But, I agree with Tim. If cost is an issue there are other keyboards that might do the trick at more reasonable price points. Unless you are selling off the XS, in which case, you probably have a decent starting point.
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#2787161 - 06/25/16 04:57 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: RABid]
BEMcCut Offline
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I this you should be able to get everything you need from Motif XS that you already own. I used a Motif ES in an 80's band and a modern country band and was able to easily come up with any sound I needed with layering.

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#2787164 - 06/25/16 05:20 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: BEMcCut]
GregC Online   content
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it might not be a strong point now, but having a full sequencer in the Kronos vs whatever they did in the Montage is a something to be aware of

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#2787173 - 06/25/16 06:20 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: GregC]
CEB Offline
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I've spent about 2 hours on the Montage. My impressions are... Montage bread and butter sounds sound better 'out of the box'. The Kronos can sound great if you tweak your sounds.

Kronos rules when it comes to patch control in a live setting. Search some videos on Kronos setlist. Montage is better than the Motif but Kronos is still king in the live control department. I would love to have a Montage 7 but the Kronos would still be my main controller.

Montage 8 is an awesome board. The first thing I would do is strip some verb off the pianos.


Edited by CEB (06/26/16 07:36 AM)
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#2787211 - 06/26/16 02:15 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: CEB]
Brilliant Offline
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Just my 2 cents... never owning either.

I've always loved the Motif bread & butter sounds. Even back to the original. They're perfect. Any improvement in the Kronos or Montage, is marginal.

If I'm just looking to play in a few cover bands & write songs on the weekend, I wouldn't be looking to replace the Motif... well, I might look for a less heavy solution for gigging & leaving the Motif in the studio.

But then again, I'd be perfectly fine gigging with a Roland XP-80

But buying a Montage or Kronos would be more about sound design, inspiration, innovation, & creativity. Both offer quite a bit in those categories. It's hard to chose just one.

If you'll be selling the Motif to help get a new board, I'd ask how much does the sampling & sequencer play into what you do. If they are integral, get the Kronos as the Montage has neither.

If you don't sample much or sequence on a computer, I'd start with the Montage.

Or... stick with the Motif & get a Prophet 6, pro 2, minilogue,a Moog Voyager, but that's me.

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#2787219 - 06/26/16 06:45 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: RABid]
dlittle1906 Offline
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Registered: 06/24/16
Posts: 3
Thanks for the reply but the organ patch doesn't really make a difference to me. I have a Nord Electro 4 so I have organ taken care of. Even with the horn sections, it's not that big of a deal b/c the bands I play with we have a trumpet & Sax or we'll have 2 Sax players. Plus to me playing horn patches on a keyboard always sounds cheesy. As u said, nothing beats an actual horn section. So the main thing I wld be interested in is the layering, splits and set lists. I know the Kronos has the set list function. What abt the Montage? Does it have the set list functionality?

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#2787230 - 06/26/16 07:12 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: dlittle1906]
bennyray Offline
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I have had a Kronos for about 3 years and have the K2 88 now. I am very satisfied and played the Montage a few days ago. Here we go for me the piano and strings on the Montage is slightly better than the Kronos. Everything else is better on the Kronos to me. The Montage seems to be harder to navigate around on. Setlist on the Kronos makes everything easier. You get more bang for the buck on the Kronos. Busch has some Famous Synths, VOL.1 AND 2 that are free and sound really good with no programming just download from the website. The layering and splits were a huge reason i chose the KRONOS. You have endless possibilities with the splits and layers and it's not very complicated. The vintage effects on the Kronos really makes the layering of sounds come alive. In my opinion you will need to tweak some on either board to get the sounds you want. Ultimately both keyboards top of the line.
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#2787236 - 06/26/16 07:31 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: dlittle1906]
CEB Offline
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Montage does have a setlist type function but the Kronos is more robust. It has annotation notes. You can color code the boxes. You can have 128 setlist with 128 patches each. Korg setlist is way better IMO. But the Yamaha patch control is much better than what the Motif had.

I don't mean to make the Kronos sound like slam dunk over the Montage. IMO the Montage action feels better. I think the Yamaha is better hardware. The Kronos in my opinion has more potential to give you the most hardware and software problems. My Kronos 2 gave me more problems than any keyboard I ever own. (But I preorder one of the first K2s)

You better power the Kronos off a UPS with automated voltage regulation. You should do that any way with UPSs being so affordable and with you looking at running $5000+ worth if gear if you get either these.

My Kronos pianos sound nice through IEMs but if you use stereo speaker monitoring live the Kronos pianos can sound like ass if your speaker placement is not just right.

Both are great boards.


Edited by CEB (06/26/16 07:32 AM)
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So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

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#2787237 - 06/26/16 07:35 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: CEB]
ElmerJFudd Offline
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Good points, CEB. And obviously you own the Kronos right now, and have been very honest all along about any issues and niggles you've had with it. The engineering/architecture of these two boards is a bit different for sure.
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#2787241 - 06/26/16 07:55 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: ElmerJFudd]
CEB Offline
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I think it depends on your gig. If I was doing a Motown gig I would lean towards Montage. But with the over produced modern pop stuff I don't think I could do what I'm doing on the Kronos using the Montage.

Montage seems to have some stupid MIDI implementation limits. The Kronos is a strong controller. In pop it not rare to run 10-15 zones with multiple combis per song.

I like what Kurzweil is doing on paper but I don't do business with any Kurz dealers and have not had any hands on time with any of the new Kurzweil. But they look killer.

If I was still playing Country I would probably be playing a MP7 or still playing my S90XS.


Edited by CEB (06/26/16 08:03 AM)
_________________________
"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!
So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

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#2787266 - 06/26/16 11:23 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: CEB]
jimmymio Offline
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Registered: 09/05/02
Posts: 856
Loc: petaluma, ca
After 11 years of service my S90ES is starting to show its age. I am considering replacing it with a Kronos 73 but it is a little disconcerting to hear concerns about its build quality.

I agree about the great "bread and butter" soundset on the motif line. I'd even consider having the S90ES fixed but all the local sources say I'd have to ship it to Vegas for repair. I've never faced this in my 30+ years as a musician!
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1935 Mason & Hamlin Model A
Korg Kronos 2 73
Kurz PC361
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#2787275 - 06/26/16 12:25 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: jimmymio]
GregC Online   content
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Originally Posted By: jimmymio
After 11 years of service my S90ES is starting to show its age. I am considering replacing it with a Kronos 73 but it is a little disconcerting to hear concerns about its build quality.



I would agree the Kronos is not built like a tank. I suppose if an owner is tough on a board or other people handle the board carelessly, maybe the Kronos is not the 1st choice.

But thousands of Kronos owners gig with their Kronos. So its obviously doable. I also think its wise to have some type of backup keyboard just in case.

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#2787279 - 06/26/16 12:54 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: GregC]
timwat Offline
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Originally Posted By: GregC
Originally Posted By: timwat

Kronos. I own an original K73, preordered when they were first announced several years ago. It's been a workhorse, an embarrassment of riches...but the acoustic piano is only average.
Tim


Blasphemy ! smile

you need quality stereo/studio monitors


Ha! How you making out in this oppressive heat, Greg?

Actually, I have decent monitoring here at home. But having 1) played a big band gig last week Kronos (BTW, I really don't like playing big band gigs - not my cup of tea and I don't think it will grow on me) and playing 2.5 hours of jazz on the CP4 last night, I have to say the pianos on the Kronos (even what sounds passable for me at home) simply are in a AAA league compared to the CP4 MLB-level pianos. No comparison.

Tim
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#2787283 - 06/26/16 01:39 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: timwat]
bennyray Offline
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Registered: 12/06/14
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The Montage Piano has 10 layers and 10 second looped samples.
The Kronos Piano has 12 layers and 12 second unlooped samples.
Although these are both really good pianos your amplification
means alot also.

I have a friend that has both and he prefers the Kronos so
it is all about what you like and hear.
_________________________
Korg Kronos 2 88, Nord Electro 5D 73, Yamaha S90es, Korg CX3, Roland D-70

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#2787284 - 06/26/16 01:53 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: timwat]
jimmymio Offline
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Loc: petaluma, ca
Originally Posted By: timwat

the pianos on the Kronos (even what sounds passable for me at home) simply are in a AAA league compared to the CP4 MLB-level pianos. No comparison.

Tim


I, for one, wouldn't expect a "Swiss Army Knife" KB to have pianos in the same league as a "one trick pony" stage piano.
_________________________
1935 Mason & Hamlin Model A
Korg Kronos 2 73
Kurz PC361
Yam S90ES
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#2787285 - 06/26/16 01:55 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: timwat]
GregC Online   content
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Originally Posted By: timwat
Originally Posted By: GregC
Originally Posted By: timwat

Kronos. I own an original K73, preordered when they were first announced several years ago. It's been a workhorse, an embarrassment of riches...but the acoustic piano is only average.
Tim


Blasphemy ! smile

you need quality stereo/studio monitors


Ha! How you making out in this oppressive heat, Greg?

Actually, I have decent monitoring here at home. But having 1) played a big band gig last week Kronos (BTW, I really don't like playing big band gigs - not my cup of tea and I don't think it will grow on me) and playing 2.5 hours of jazz on the CP4 last night, I have to say the pianos on the Kronos (even what sounds passable for me at home) simply are in a AAA league compared to the CP4 MLB-level pianos. No comparison.

Tim


Hey Tim, yes its getting hotter, approaching the century mark out here. It does cool off at night, fortunately.

To beat the heat, I run my errands in the morning. Afternoons , I stay inside working.
Can set my own schedule.

Good that you have decent monitors at home. The Kronos pianos also sound excellent on recordings.

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#2787286 - 06/26/16 01:59 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: GregC]
jimmymio Offline
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Loc: petaluma, ca
Disco Bay huh? I've been visiting my folks there for the last 30 years. Have yet to find the disco though!
_________________________
1935 Mason & Hamlin Model A
Korg Kronos 2 73
Kurz PC361
Yam S90ES
Rhodes Stage 73 (1972)

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#2787290 - 06/26/16 02:33 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: ElmerJFudd]
dlittle1906 Offline
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Registered: 06/24/16
Posts: 3
Yea cost really isn't an issue. Ur assumption is correct. I'll selling my XS.

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#2787301 - 06/26/16 03:44 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: jimmymio]
GregC Online   content
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Originally Posted By: jimmymio
Disco Bay huh? I've been visiting my folks there for the last 30 years. Have yet to find the disco though!


the discos are on the Boats + booze that cruise the Delta wink

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#2787309 - 06/26/16 04:33 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: GregC]
Moonglow Offline
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Originally Posted By: GregC
Originally Posted By: timwat

Kronos. I own an original K73, preordered when they were first announced several years ago. It's been a workhorse, an embarrassment of riches...but the acoustic piano is only average.
Tim


Blasphemy ! smile

you need quality stereo/studio monitors

I could not get the Kronos pianos to work live in mono, but they do sound considerably better in stereo. However, I did not want to run stereo, so my solution was to install a third-party piano which featured a nice Yamaha C7 mono sample. As much as I enjoyed everything else about the Kronos (e.g., EPs, synth engines, MIDI controller functions), I was ready to return it because I simply could not get the stock APs to work. I know the OP said that he does not want to download external sounds, but if he finds himself in a similar situation, there are options.
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#2787313 - 06/26/16 04:39 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: Moonglow]
CEB Offline
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My goto is a tweaked version of the Virtual Insanity Piano patch.

Which 3rd party piano did you get? Epic Grand?
_________________________
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"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!
So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

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#2787315 - 06/26/16 04:48 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: CEB]
Moonglow Offline
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Yep, the Epic Grand. Works great in my classic rock band.
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#2787352 - 06/26/16 09:53 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: CEB]
Analogaddict Offline
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Originally Posted By: CEB


Montage seems to have some stupid MIDI implementation limits. The Kronos is a strong controller. In pop it not rare to run 10-15 zones with multiple combis per song.


The Montage does have a lot of cool features, IMO the envelope follower is perfect for playing electronic music live. But - the midi implementation is no good for what I do. I spoke with a Yamaha endorser who was quite baffled with the limitations which make it more difficult than nescessary to integrate in a live rig.

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#2787759 - 06/28/16 03:53 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: bennyray]
Rick Stirling Offline
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Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 9
Loc: Southeast ID
Originally Posted By: bennyray
The Montage Piano has 10 layers and 10 second looped samples.
The Kronos Piano has 12 layers and 12 second unlooped samples.
Although these are both really good pianos your amplification
means alot also.

I have a friend that has both and he prefers the Kronos so
it is all about what you like and hear.


SG2 (Berlin Grand) Has 12 layers and about 30-31 seconds un-looped on my K2
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Korg Kronos 2, Korg PA600, MZ-X500, AKAI MPD32, M-Audio Oxygen 25, ZOOM H6, Cakewalk Sonar

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#2787765 - 06/28/16 04:25 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: Rick Stirling]
timwat Offline
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While all of distinctions about sample layers, looped vs. unlooped, etc. are possible points of comparison, for me the question is playability, sound and finger-to-ear connection in a live gigging context.

I don't use the Kronos to record piano. I use a real piano - the one the studio already has. So I'm only talking about live work.

And for me, for live piano work it's the CP4 hands down. Now, I get jimmymio's note about a possibly unfair comparison (expensive swiss army knife vs. dedicated, narrow focus digital piano). But I might also suggest once we're talking about the retail price of either the Kronos or Montage (and the much-discussed sample layers in each), I'm not totally unjustified in hoping that pricey workstation would give a lowly, single-purpose slab piano a run for it's money.

tim

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#2787770 - 06/28/16 04:54 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: timwat]
ElmerJFudd Offline
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Plus CP4 is the lightest of the slab digital pianos that's got a decent action (better than CP-40, different than PX-5S, lighter than MP7 and RD-800). I'm convinced that we don't always need the most powerful instrument, and sometimes not even the most versatile, but more ones that meet our gigging needs. I think the shift in recent models like Forte and Montage to focus on simplifying UI is a direct reaction to Nord's success focusing on giggers needs vs. hitting every spec. In the end, we want instruments that sound great, cover the sounds we use the most (and those we need less often), plus are really easy to use - including deeper real world needs like splits and layers. This is really really hard to achieve because not everyone's gig is the same, so you want to pick to your needs. On the upside, there isn't much I can imagine you need to do that can't be covered by Kronos, Montage, Forte, and Stage 2 EX. So pick what sounds great to you, and what you can wrap your head around using. For some, a stage piano is plenty. For others, only the mothership will do.
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#2788411 - 07/01/16 11:34 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: timwat]
jimmymio Offline
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Registered: 09/05/02
Posts: 856
Loc: petaluma, ca
Originally Posted By: timwat
I'm not totally unjustified in hoping that pricey workstation would give a lowly, single-purpose slab piano a run for it's money


I had that 11 years ago when I bought the Yam S90ES. And, although not a workstation, it was well under $2k. Finally starting to show its age and I hate the thought of stepping down to Kronos pianos. Don't like the Kronos action as much either but maybe I could get used to it.
_________________________
1935 Mason & Hamlin Model A
Korg Kronos 2 73
Kurz PC361
Yam S90ES
Rhodes Stage 73 (1972)

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#2788426 - 07/01/16 01:15 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: jimmymio]
GregC Online   content
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Posts: 5052
Loc: Discovery Bay, California
Originally Posted By: jimmymio
Originally Posted By: timwat
I'm not totally unjustified in hoping that pricey workstation would give a lowly, single-purpose slab piano a run for it's money


I had that 11 years ago when I bought the Yam S90ES. And, although not a workstation, it was well under $2k. Finally starting to show its age and I hate the thought of stepping down to Kronos pianos. Don't like the Kronos action as much either but maybe I could get used to it.


wot ?

Stepping down to Kronos pianos ?

its not 1999 Triton anymore smile

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#2788434 - 07/01/16 02:53 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: GregC]
aronnelson Offline
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Registered: 09/04/14
Posts: 647
The S90ES did have a great piano for live. The mistake many make is that you don't have to use the the Kronos pianos if you don't want to. Just get a 3rd party piano. That's the beauty of the Kronos, it's a killer keyboard period. For myself, I have tweaked some of the Kronos pianos but overall I agree with timwat - when I hear the replay, it's great, but when I am playing it.... it's ok. Will be playing a Montage as a rental in Japan - will see how that goes - sure it will be great.
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#2788436 - 07/01/16 03:04 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: aronnelson]
timwat Offline
Quite wealthy...spiritually
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As Aron says, the Kronos can work on a gig for pianos. It's just not my favorite. Now, I have several of Busch's pianos loaded in the Kronos, and Aron is also correct that it provides tons of options. And I just played my personal piano program (an edited version of Busch's stellar work) at last night's gig on Virtual Insanity (I love that exposed piano line).

The point is simply for me on a live gig, if I load up my best Kronos piano and sit it side by side with the stock CP4, I'm going to spend all night on the CP4. At that point, sample layers, looped vs. unlooped, and all the other features the Kronos offers doesn't matter. The CP4 is a significantly better piano option.

And I don't find that really reasonable based on the price of the Kronos. My personal opinion, I own both and neither is going away soon.

Tim
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#2788456 - 07/01/16 04:45 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: timwat]
jimmymio Offline
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Any opinions on the Kronos action?
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#2788457 - 07/01/16 04:56 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: jimmymio]
CEB Offline
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Which one? Weighted?
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#2788458 - 07/01/16 04:56 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: jimmymio]
timwat Offline
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Yes. Now, it's worth mentioning I have an original K73, and that version of Korg's RH3 action has been upgraded already.

That being said, I find it decent but not stellar. It isn't nearly as fast as the CP4, nor the old Casio PX3 I gigged into the ground. I find it quite suited for everything I do except jazz.

I'm also mindful that I have an embarrassment of riches in terms of choices, and remember gigging on a mushy Rhodes action and a Helpinstill portable upright that sliced my hand open.

So I realize just having this much horsepower in one keyboard is amazing, and the weighted action is good enough...and having played the updated version in stores, the newer RH3 is substantially better, it feels to me.

Tim
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#2788459 - 07/01/16 05:01 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: CEB]
jimmymio Offline
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Originally Posted By: CEB
Which one? Weighted?

Yes, weighted. And, does the X version have the improved action or only the newer Kronos 2?
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#2788460 - 07/01/16 05:03 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: jimmymio]
timwat Offline
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Something in my head reminds me they actually upgraded the RH3 late in the run of the original Kronos. If my memory is correct, that would mean ALL Kronos X and Kronos 2 share the upgraded RH3. But my memory is for shit these days.

Perhaps someone else on the board can confirm or correct me?
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#2788461 - 07/01/16 05:06 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: timwat]
bennyray Offline
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I had a KX 88 and upgraded to K2 88 and the action is much better. The new RH3 keybed is much quieter.
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#2788462 - 07/01/16 05:22 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: jimmymio]
CEB Offline
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It is OK. ... I nitpick stuff. When I ask I want to know dislikes and weaknesses because marketing people will give you all the positives.

I think it is too stiff in the bass. I prefer the balanced action in the Motif/Montage over the RH-3 for something like the Kronos. I actually like the RH-3 better in the SV-1. It is just because of the way I use the Kronos. Grading really doesn't serve any purpose. I only use a piano program 2 times a night and I do a ton of synth splits. But it still is not slow. I do a lot of leads across the range of the board. I still wish the bottom was less firm.

I like the SV-1 a lot.

Usually when I get a new board I hate the action for about a week or two. I warmed up to the RH-3 after about 3 days. I don't like change. LOL I think action is fine. I just nitpick.


Edited by CEB (07/01/16 05:23 PM)
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#2788491 - 07/01/16 10:09 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: CEB]
Dave Ferris Offline
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Borrowed the original Kronos 73 when they first came out as I was thinking of going with it over the CP5, which I was using back then.

Played the Korg on maybe 5 gigs, all jazz but of varying intensity and musical quality. I also owned/tried the SV1 twice, 16 months apart.

I can play on the Korg keyboards and like certain aspects about them but given the preference - Yamaha all the way for sound and playability. I couldn't wait to get back to the CP5 after the borrowed Kronos. I remember stumbling around trying to play the head on Confirmation, Recorda-Me and other tunes where you needed to be real precise with finger dexterity.

Haven't played the Montage but if it's the same as the Motif/balanced action, I've always preferred even the lower level Yamaha digital piano lines to it. But of course I'm coming from a strictly piano preference.

Unrelated but as most know from my posts - I haven't played any faux portable piano, for jazz specifically, and for live playing, that can stand next to the CP4.

My ears have become detuned and indifferent to synths, and generally the musical contexts in which they are most commonly used. But I'm sure between those two and maybe the Forte , you'd be hard pressed to want for anything.
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#2788496 - 07/01/16 11:45 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: bennyray]
bob_sd Offline
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Registered: 09/24/14
Posts: 42
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: bennyray
I had a KX 88 and upgraded to K2 88 and the action is much better. The new RH3 keybed is much quieter.


+1. I hated the KX88 action from the day I bought it (was young and foolish...) just felt "mushy" to me and never got used to it. The SV-1 73 "new" RH3 keys are light years ahead, though not as fast as I would like.


Edited by bob_sd (07/01/16 11:46 PM)

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#2788568 - 07/02/16 02:10 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: ElmerJFudd]
seanl Offline
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Registered: 04/02/14
Posts: 84


I just acquired a M3 73 and a hard case for a steal. I wish Korg would make a rack mount Kronos as I'd love to use it with the M3 73 Keybed. Wishful thinking I guess.
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#2788667 - 07/03/16 05:51 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: seanl]
RABid Offline
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I've never liked Yamaha action, owning both a Motif 88 and S90ES. This is why I never had a CP4 and avoided the 88 version of the Montage. I do like the action on my Kronos 2 73. It sits somewhere between the Roland and Yamaha action.
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#2788674 - 07/03/16 06:18 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: RABid]
jimmymio Offline
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Registered: 09/05/02
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Loc: petaluma, ca
Originally Posted By: RABid
I've never liked Yamaha action, owning both a Motif 88 and S90ES. This is why I never had a CP4 and avoided the 88 version of the Montage. I do like the action on my Kronos 2 73. It sits somewhere between the Roland and Yamaha action.


Interesting because I recently played the Kronos and didn't like the action compared to my S90ES. My hunch is that I would get used to it though.
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#2788676 - 07/03/16 06:27 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: jimmymio]
RABid Offline
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Originally Posted By: jimmymio
Originally Posted By: RABid
I've never liked Yamaha action, owning both a Motif 88 and S90ES. This is why I never had a CP4 and avoided the 88 version of the Montage. I do like the action on my Kronos 2 73. It sits somewhere between the Roland and Yamaha action.


Interesting because I recently played the Kronos and didn't like the action compared to my S90ES. My hunch is that I would get used to it though.


Not surprising. Most people on the forum seem to favor Yamaha action. I've always been in the "prefer Roland action" minority. Roland action always felt quicker to me. That is why I am glad that the Korg action is closer to Roland.
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#2844380 - 03/24/17 06:27 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: RABid]
davedoerfler Offline
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so, 9 months later, any movement on this front? Seems to be a fair amount of Kronos owners on this forum, yet I don't hear anything about the Montage. I'm considering a Kronos ( would be selling gear to acquire it, as I really don't need another keyboard) mostly because of the Karma engine. I like Yamaha action (will be keeping my CP4 for sure) but I don't need a FM synth.
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#2844381 - 03/24/17 06:43 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: davedoerfler]
GregC Online   content
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Originally Posted By: davedoerfler
so, 9 months later, any movement on this front? Seems to be a fair amount of Kronos owners on this forum, yet I don't hear anything about the Montage. I'm considering a Kronos ( would be selling gear to acquire it, as I really don't need another keyboard) mostly because of the Karma engine. I like Yamaha action (will be keeping my CP4 for sure) but I don't need a FM synth.


I haven't noticed much Montage enthusiasm but I am a classic Kronos owner.
( I think Montage is missing important features and its over priced)

karma on the Kronos is a +5 yr old feature.product. You are much better off, long term, to get the Karma software.

The K2 is a popular board. However, If you are in no hurry, and wise with your $3000 , maybe wait until Jan NAMM 2018


Edited by GregC (03/24/17 06:45 PM)

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#2844385 - 03/24/17 07:11 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: GregC]
#%$(# Offline
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If it's just for straight performances, the two are pretty evenly matched. One may do organ better while the other does strings.

Where the REAL difference lies is if you use them in the studio. In that case, the Kronos really shines: 16 track MIDI seq, 16 track audio recorder and the Karma engine (although the Yamaha arps are nothing to sneeze out -- some are really cool).

When purchasing such an expensive board, you really need to do your homework. Read all the reviews, watch the videos, and get a lot of hands-on time. One of them will "speak" to you envenually.

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#2844388 - 03/24/17 07:31 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: GregC]
Synthoid Offline
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Originally Posted By: GregC
If you are in no hurry, and wise with your $3000 , maybe wait until Jan NAMM 2018


The new Korg Romulus will be out by then. It's gonna be a game changer. laugh
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#2844398 - 03/24/17 08:30 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: GregC]
davedoerfler Offline
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Originally Posted By: GregC
You are much better off, long term, to get the Karma software.


unless I completely misunderstand, which is a very good possibility, this software only can be installed in certain keyboards, it is not Windows or Apple OS based. I don't own any of the keyboards listed on the Karma website as compatible.

Originally Posted By: GregC
However, If you are in no hurry, and wise with your $3000 , maybe wait until Jan NAMM 2018


I'm not often accused of being wise, however even if I did wait 9 months until NAMM 2018, it would be at least 1 year until that product was available for delivery from now and I would have to be a first generation beta tester were it a new product and I would have to pay top dollar. Currently, ther are pretty good prices for "used" Kronos.
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#2844470 - 03/25/17 10:42 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: davedoerfler]
Spotting Jonah Offline
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Loc: Northern California
Two things stand out for me - the user interface / structure, and the feel of the keys.

If you're a Yamaha guy, the flow is different to Korg's, and vice versa. If you're indifferent to interface / structure design, menus and layout, then like DulceLabs said - get some play time with both and one will speak to you.

As for keys - Yamaha is Balanced Weighted (All keys are equally weighted) whereas Korg is Progressive weighted (higher keys have less weight then lower keys, similar to a real piano).

Sound is so subjective between the two, no one can tell you what sounds good to you.

Lastly, don't wait for next year's shiny new toy. You are correct... that's a whole year of lost creativity. Jump when you're ready...

BTW, my vote goes to the Kronos... it's not even a debate for me smile
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#2844611 - 03/25/17 11:33 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: Spotting Jonah]
theshinenz Offline
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Registered: 08/05/11
Posts: 33
I currently own both, but have the Kronos on the market. For me I like the workflow of the Montage better, Im not fan of the Kronos interface, I cant stand the sample management. Its a personal thing but I can program stuff quicker on the Montage. As far as sounds go, Ive loaded the Montage with a number of XF banks I had, can cover most stuff, the synth stuff in Kronos is a bit better IMO but everything else is pretty even. The Montage is better build quality.

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#2844996 - 03/27/17 03:17 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: theshinenz]
midinut Offline
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I am of the mindset of "why not have both"? You can get a Kronos 73 or 88 and slap a MOXF6 on top of it, or you could (depending on your preference of actions) put a MOXF8 on the bottom and a Kronos 61 on top and either way have the best of both worlds. The MOXF series have the same sound set as the last series of Motif's IIRC - maybe not the full Montage sounds but other than FM engine sounds, what's really new in the Montage? Just my two cents worth.

Also, regarding the Karma software, it can be had (for both Mac & PC users) and they have versions for the Kronos, M3, Karma, and yes, even the Motif's - including the MOXFs. Just make sure you get the right version. And it's not for everyone. If you find Karma inspiring and want to create your own Generated Effects (GE's) then prepare for a huge learning curve and dig in. Stephen has some great tutorials online for it as well.

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#2845022 - 03/27/17 04:41 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: midinut]
davedoerfler Offline
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Originally Posted By: midinut
then prepare for a huge learning curve


ain't no body got time for that. laugh

Got the same info from Greg, holding off for now.
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#2845102 - 03/28/17 12:30 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: davedoerfler]
aronnelson Offline
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The Montage is amazing and sounds great. But for what you seem to be describing - I would go with the Kronos. I have one and it is perfect for what you are describing for your use. You didn't say which XF model you use, both are heavy keyboards once you go into weighted key territory.

The Kronos has had regular updates and still sounds great! I thing you would really like it. Lots of sounds available as well.

There is one caveat about the Kronos - there is a 2 minute startup time.
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#2845249 - 03/28/17 11:05 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: aronnelson]
richforman Offline
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> MOXF8 on the bottom and a Kronos 61 on top and either way have > the best of both worlds

That's my gigging rig!
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#2872465 - 08/11/17 11:46 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: bennyray]
SEA Offline
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Registered: 07/05/05
Posts: 7
Loc: Florida
On the used market the best buy (IMHO) would be the PC3K8. You can find them under 2K.

As a classically trained jazz/rock/contemporary pianist I'm very picky when it comes to actions. A few weeks ago I picked up a used S90 ES from Sam Ash for $1,350 just for the action in my studio. IMHO it beats every action out there period! The pianos sounded great so I thought I'd try the S90 XS ($1,360) with a 45 day return from Guitar Center. I hated the sound of it and the action wasn't as good as the ES! Felt more like a Motif. The headphone DAC was like 1/2 the volume of the ES. It totally sucked so back it went.

I have tried the Kronos. The action is "Ok" but a bit sluggish. Next to the Montage there's no comparison. The Montage smoked every action there. It's very close to the S90ES. I tried them side by side (the ES and Montage) and both feel great. I also tried the Roland RD2000. Action is good but stiffer or harder than the rest. Montage was the best.

Next I'm ordering a refurbished PC3K8. The main reason is the S90ES isn't much of a controller where the PC3K8 is great as a controller and for live it's awesome. It's a very powerful synth. If the action of the S90 ES is better then I would keep both. If the PC3K8 is as good then I still have time to return the S90 ES.

In a perfect setup I think the PC3K8 and the Kronos 61 would make a nice combo. But if I had to choose 1 the PC3K8.

On a side note, I did try the SL88 Studio and the SL88 grand. They were HORRIBLE actions. The S90 ES blew them away. No comparison.


Edited by SEA (08/11/17 11:53 PM)

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#2872550 - 08/12/17 12:24 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: SEA]
ApprenticeGary Offline
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Registered: 08/08/13
Posts: 46
Loc: Beijing
I taught on a kronos 2 88 weekly at my friend's school. The action is very very good and acoustic-like. I don't temember sv1 or kronos 1 had so good action.


Edited by ApprenticeGary (08/12/17 12:25 PM)
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#2872562 - 08/12/17 02:26 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: ApprenticeGary]
rickzjamm Offline
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Registered: 11/05/13
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A while back I had the Korg Kronos2 88 & the RD-800 side by side in my home office, I really dig the action of the RD-800 & to my surprise the KK2 88 felt almost exactly like it.
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#2885748 - 10/18/17 01:02 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: RABid]
SEA Offline
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Registered: 07/05/05
Posts: 7
Loc: Florida
Originally Posted By: RABid
but if I had to choose just one it would be the Kronos. Mainly because of the lack of MIDI input routing, but also because of the organ patches.


Did you here these organ samples for the Montage?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z-1C3bFdxac

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#2885762 - 10/18/17 02:18 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: SEA]
GRollins Online   content
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Registered: 09/01/17
Posts: 503
I know this probably won't apply to 98% of the people here, but I vastly prefer the pipe organ (separate and distinct from Hammond organ) voices in my Yamaha XS rack unit to anything else I've come across. My Kronos has one pipe organ that's pretty good for my purposes, but the XS has eight or ten that are all good.

Grey
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#2885787 - 10/18/17 08:00 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: SEA]
jimmymio Offline
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Registered: 09/05/02
Posts: 856
Loc: petaluma, ca
Originally Posted By: SEA
On the used market the best buy (IMHO) would be the PC3K8. You can find them under 2K.

As a classically trained jazz/rock/contemporary pianist I'm very picky when it comes to actions. A few weeks ago I picked up a used S90 ES from Sam Ash for $1,350 just for the action in my studio. IMHO it beats every action out there period! The pianos sounded great so I thought I'd try the S90 XS ($1,360) with a 45 day return from Guitar Center. I hated the sound of it and the action wasn't as good as the ES! Felt more like a Motif. The headphone DAC was like 1/2 the volume of the ES. It totally sucked so back it went.

I have tried the Kronos. The action is "Ok" but a bit sluggish.
.


I own an S90ES and Kronos 2 73 and i agree with everything Sea says here. After many years of hard work my S90ES needs work and I didn't want to sink the $ into it. Bought the kronos and (a 3rd party piano) and I don't like the action or the piano sounds. In fact I avoid playing acoustic piano sounds and try to use EPs instead.
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#2885800 - 10/18/17 10:27 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: SEA]
AnotherScott Offline
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Originally Posted By: SEA
Originally Posted By: RABid
but if I had to choose just one it would be the Kronos. Mainly because of the lack of MIDI input routing, but also because of the organ patches.


Did you here these organ samples for the Montage?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z-1C3bFdxac

Not nearly as good as Kronos, based on that demo, not even counting the technical limitations like having only 8 sliders for 9 drawbars, which work the wrong direction besides. Sample-based organs also have phase and polyphony issues.
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#2885802 - 10/18/17 11:15 PM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: AnotherScott]
theshinenz Offline
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Registered: 08/05/11
Posts: 33
Not sure why people rave about the Kronos Organs either, IMO both the Montage and Kronos organs are ok but not great. I own a Montage and have owned quite a few Kronos I find the Blue3 Vst better than both for a budget friendly option.

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#2885884 - 10/19/17 08:18 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: theshinenz]
RABid Offline
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Registered: 11/01/01
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Originally Posted By: theshinenz
Not sure why people rave about the Kronos Organs either, ...



We are not claiming that the Kronos organs sound better or even as good as a clonewheel. But they do sound better than what you get from any other ROMpler workstation all around keyboard for stage. Yes I know the Nord stage has a better organ, but it is no Kronos when it comes to fulfilling all your stage sound needs.
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#2885902 - 10/19/17 09:24 AM Re: Korg Kronos vs Yamaha Montage [Re: RABid]
CEB Offline
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I like the Motif organ ..... a lot. They make the best base pad sounds for Pop organ based pad sounds. The D-50 was pretty good also but sometimes the extra warble made them inferior to the more stripped down Motif tones.

I use the Kronos tonewheel sounds on Price Tag. It works really well for with no leslie effects at all. Ala tone cabinet or full stop type sound but the Kronos preset leslie effects over do it on the amp noises. It is to the point of being distracting.

But if I want to play Hammond parts .... they all suck.


Edited by CEB (10/19/17 09:27 AM)
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