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#2872225 - 08/10/17 10:56 PM Keyboard to play in the street
amadeok Offline
Member

Registered: 08/10/17
Posts: 3
Loc: Rome
Hello,
I need a keyboard to play in the streets, so something that can work with rechargable batteries and has good sound. The only special feature i need is that it has aux in to play a base in the background.
I was thinking either the Yamaha PSR-E353/E363 or the Roland GO-61P
Can you advice some?
Which one has the best piano sound?
thanks
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#2872268 - 08/11/17 05:49 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: amadeok]
ElmerJFudd Offline
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Registered: 11/30/14
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Loc: USA, greater NY area
The hard part isn't the light portable keyboard. It's the amplification - how loud do you need to be? Will built in speakers cut it?
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#2872273 - 08/11/17 06:03 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: ElmerJFudd]
kwyn Online   content
Senior Member

Registered: 04/03/11
Posts: 378
Originally Posted By: ElmerJFudd
The hard part isn't the light portable keyboard. It's the amplification - how loud do you need to be? Will built in speakers cut it?


I can't imagine any battery powered keyboard would have built-in speakers loud enough.

You can probably use any board you like, but you'll need something like:

http://www.rolandus.com/blog/2014/03/13/cube-street-ex-battery-powered-amp/

I'm not sure what else is out there, but Roland is the only company I know that makes these. Then again, I haven't researched it until just now.

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#2872278 - 08/11/17 06:33 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: amadeok]
Synthoid Offline
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#2872285 - 08/11/17 06:47 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: amadeok]
pjd Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 09/14/12
Posts: 68
Loc: Massachusetts
Hi --

I've been looking for battery-powered, portable solutions for quite some time. Here are links to some of the set-ups that I've tried:

http://sandsoftwaresound.net/psr-e443-snap-review/
http://sandsoftwaresound.net/portable-synth-rig/
http://sandsoftwaresound.net/roland-gokeys-first-impressions/
http://sandsoftwaresound.net/roland-gokeys-is-gonekeys/

The most generally satisfying rig has been a Korg Triton Taktile powered by a USB battery pack and driving a JBL Charge 2 amp/speaker. The TT has a full range of sounds and the JBL Charge 2 develops enough sound for acoustic rehearsals with our music ministry. The JBL Charge 2 puts out respectable bass thanks to its passive radiators. The TT piano is kind of brittle and ain't nothing to write home about. The EPs are respectable.

The PSR-E443 is OK, but it sounds kind of dated. Yamaha offer 76 key models, the PSR-EW400 and PSR-EW300, which are off-shoots of this line.

I had high hopes for the Roland GO:KEYS. The sound engine is pretty darned good for the price especially when patched through external amplification. The built-in amp/speakers are meh.

The worst issue with the GO:KEYS is the keyboard, which it shares with the GO:PIANO. Definitely try the action before buying. The keyboard is textured, but way, way light, feeling toy-like. I returned the GO:KEYS and did not replace it due to a defective key right out of the box.

If it's piano that you're after, Yamaha's entry level portables like the Piaggero line might be the best option. The Piaggero is better made than the GO:PIANO.

I kind of wish the MX49 had internal battery power. The USB battery pack with the TT feels as unnecessary as a wall wart. :-)

Hope my rambling helps -- pj

Music technology blog: http://sandsoftwaresound.net/

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#2872286 - 08/11/17 06:54 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: Synthoid]
kwyn Online   content
Senior Member

Registered: 04/03/11
Posts: 378
haha! I know, I know.

There's some behringer battery powered PAs too. I guess the OP can google "battery powered PAs" or "battery powered keyboard amps"

So, really, the answer to the OP, would be, You can use any board you like. There are way too many battery powered keyboards with different types of sounds and it depends on what kind of music he or she is playing and a million other factors we all take into account when buying a board.

However, amplification is an equally important consideration, because I'm unaware of any battery powered board that is loud enough to be heard outside on the streets by anything more than a very small crowd

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#2872287 - 08/11/17 06:55 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: Synthoid]
lightbg Offline
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Registered: 02/02/01
Posts: 520
Loc: Rockaway,NJ,UNITED STATES
Here you go......all battery, including bass:



Jake
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#2872317 - 08/11/17 08:33 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: Synthoid]
mate stubb Offline
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Originally Posted By: Synthoid




What's wrong with this picture? Nothing, except the chainsaw is a Stihl and therefore you will never get it started.
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#2872323 - 08/11/17 08:49 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: mate stubb]
mate stubb Offline
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#2872325 - 08/11/17 09:03 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: mate stubb]
DulceLabs.com Offline
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Registered: 04/21/13
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Loc: Orlando, Florida
You shouldn't be playing in the street - it's dangerous and the cars are going too fast to hear the music.

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#2872329 - 08/11/17 09:07 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: mate stubb]
stillearning Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 06/27/13
Posts: 283
Originally Posted By: mate stubb

What's wrong with this picture? Nothing, except the chainsaw is a Stihl and therefore you will never get it started.

Gotta disagree here. I live on a farm and have several Stihl products, including chainsaws. Start on first or second pull everytime. Never a problem. They'd be my first choice to run through a Roland keyboard amp.

Maybe you're thinking of Craftsman?
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#2872344 - 08/11/17 10:09 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: stillearning]
Randelph Offline
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Registered: 06/30/09
Posts: 373
Loc: San Francisco, CA
So, first off, distinguish between battery powered keyboards and battery powered amps.

It's a hassle to power a keyboard. Some of them are 12v dc, so that does give you some options to run it directly off a small battery, which is not that big of a hassle, but in many cases you've got to have a battery and an inverter.

You're SUPER limited if you want the keys to have their own speakers and run off of batteries. I've got probably the loudest one I know of, the Casio WK7600, and the volume level is not close to being of sufficient volume to play out on the street, and hope to have an impact. Plus, it only takes 6 d cell batteries, you can't use rechargeables, and that gets expensive. Plus, I grew to hate the quality of sounds it had, and it's sounds are on the same level as the Yamaha PSR 453 or slightly better.

Whereas a battery powered amp is easy peasy. The hard part is that keyboards are a full range instrument, so unlike a guitar it's a lot harder to amplify decently, the bass is the hard part.

To my knowledge there is no better option under $500 than the Roland Street Cube EX. There's a running joke with some forum members that the only thing worth running thru a Roland KC amp is a chainsaw. The Cube Street EX though is actually a really decent speaker, does surprisingly well with keyboards. I've been using mine in drum circle settings for the last couple of years, i have a lot of noise to compete with, and it does really well for a battery powered amp. You buy 8 AA rechargeable batteries, a Ni-Cad battery charger with 8 slots, and after a $25 battery investment you're good to go for 4-5 hours, and these batteries are good for hundreds of charges. Plus, it has an excellent mixer: a really decent mic channel with good sounding reverb, a guitar channel that makes every guitar i put thru it sound good, a instrument channel for the keys, and 1/8th " aux in. With 2 8" woofers, it puts out good bass, and surprisingly, it pumps out 50 watts using 8 AA batteries!

So, if you concentrate on finding the best sounding battery powered keyboard, and buy a powered amp, you've got a decent setup and more options than if you imagine you can find both in a battery powered keyboard..

I recently upgraded to the Casio MZ-X500, a keyboard with speakers that have 40 watts of power. They get reasonably loud, but still don't hold a candle to the Roland Cube EX, and its not battery powered. Loving the sounds though, the pads, etc.
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Roland Street Cube EX / QSC K10 / SS V.3
Rode M3
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#2872345 - 08/11/17 10:13 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: DulceLabs.com]
GregC Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 10/26/03
Posts: 4692
Loc: Discovery Bay, California
Originally Posted By: DulceLabs.com
You shouldn't be playing in the street - it's dangerous and the cars are going too fast to hear the music.


not only that. We have 'distracted ' drivers who believe social media is much more important than driving in the correct lane.

I have had to swerve my car twice onto the dirt shoulder of a road to avoid a head on collision from a $#$@$%@ driver in love with his smart phone.

Same type drivers end up on the sidewalk and ramming thru store front windows.
Plenty of stories.

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#2872347 - 08/11/17 10:22 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: pjd]
AnotherScott Online   content
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Registered: 10/19/09
Posts: 10737
Originally Posted By: pjd
the JBL Charge 2 develops enough sound for acoustic rehearsals with our music ministry. The JBL Charge 2 puts out respectable bass thanks to its passive radiators.

I haven't heard the JBL, but just based on specs, I think the Klipsch KMC3 will beat it handily, I've used the Klipsch, it does a decent job for what it is. Also, it uses D cells (you can use rechargeables). So you don't have to worry about running out of juice in the middle of a performance, you can swap in new batteries on the fly. Also, it will work indefinitely. All the things with built-in non-removable batteries will eventually start running for shorter and shorter times, until they eventually won't run on battery at all and you either relegate it to AC power only, or trash it. (Odds are it will not be worth sending it to the factory for a new battery.)

http://www.klipsch.com/products/kmc-3-wireless-music-system

I haven't played through the The Cube Street EX, but I would expect it to be quite a bit better again. But there's a big difference in price and travel weight. But I would seriously look at that if the price/weight are okay.

As to the rest, yeah, there are lots of nice battery powered boards these days, depending on what you want... lots of differences in the sounds, travel weight, key feel, backing track ability, price, real-time controls... pretty much all the same things that differentiate non-battery powered boards. ;-)
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#2872367 - 08/11/17 11:25 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: AnotherScott]
Randelph Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 06/30/09
Posts: 373
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Originally Posted By: AnotherScott
Originally Posted By: pjd
the JBL Charge 2 develops enough sound for acoustic rehearsals with our music ministry. The JBL Charge 2 puts out respectable bass thanks to its passive radiators.

I haven't heard the JBL, but just based on specs, I think the Klipsch KMC3 will beat it handily, I've used the Klipsch, it does a decent job for what it is. Also, it uses D cells (you can use rechargeables). So you don't have to worry about running out of juice in the middle of a performance, you can swap in new batteries on the fly. Also, it will work indefinitely. All the things with built-in non-removable batteries will eventually start running for shorter and shorter times, until they eventually won't run on battery at all and you either relegate it to AC power only, or trash it. (Odds are it will not be worth sending it to the factory for a new battery.)

http://www.klipsch.com/products/kmc-3-wireless-music-system

I haven't played through the The Cube Street EX, but I would expect it to be quite a bit better again. But there's a big difference in price and travel weight. But I would seriously look at that if the price/weight are okay.

As to the rest, yeah, there are lots of nice battery powered boards these days, depending on what you want... lots of differences in the sounds, travel weight, key feel, backing track ability, price, real-time controls... pretty much all the same things that differentiate non-battery powered boards. ;-)


Scott, have you used the KMC 3 with keys? The problem with playback systems they're designed for mastered music, whereas live sound speakers are designed with the larger dynamic range of live music.

I hadn't heard of this bt speaker and have been looking for the best sounding speaker for under $200, and based on quite a few convincing reviews it looks like this guy is unparalleled. It doesn't try to be small, so they do get a 5.25" woofer in there, and quite a few watts. I just ordered it, so I'll report back on live keys and playback music. Thanks!

Randy
_________________________
Nord Stage 88 Classic / Casio MZ-X500 / Casio WK 7600
Roland Street Cube EX / QSC K10 / SS V.3
Rode M3
Various congas and djembes



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#2872370 - 08/11/17 11:37 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: Randelph]
AnotherScott Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Randelph
Scott, have you used the KMC 3 with keys? The problem with playback systems they're designed for mastered music, whereas live sound speakers are designed with the larger dynamic range of live music.

Yes, I've played piano through the KMC3. It's better than what I've heard out of some slab pianos' built-in speakers.

You have a good point about some systems really just being designed for recorded music. I was surprised at just how badly the Bose Soundlink did when I tried to play piano through it. Awful. Couldn't handle the transients at all. Yet, it does a surprisingly pleasing job (with plenty of volume) if you just want to play MP3s through it.
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#2872386 - 08/11/17 12:35 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: stillearning]
davedoerfler Offline
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Registered: 12/27/12
Posts: 6064
Loc: thin ice
Originally Posted By: stillearning
Originally Posted By: mate stubb

What's wrong with this picture? Nothing, except the chainsaw is a Stihl and therefore you will never get it started.

Gotta disagree here. I live on a farm and have several Stihl products, including chainsaws. Start on first or second pull everytime. Never a problem. They'd be my first choice to run through a Roland keyboard amp.


This is very cool. First time I can remember a thread going off topic based on chain saw manufacturers. laugh
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#2872399 - 08/11/17 02:07 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: davedoerfler]
Synthoid Offline
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Registered: 12/04/03
Posts: 9380
Loc: Pennsylvania, USA
Originally Posted By: davedoerfler
This is very cool. First time I can remember a thread going off topic based on chain saw manufacturers. laugh


Gotta love this place. thu
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To stop the flow of music would be like the stopping of time itself, incredible and inconceivable.
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#2872400 - 08/11/17 02:24 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: davedoerfler]
amadeok Offline
Member

Registered: 08/10/17
Posts: 3
Loc: Rome
Thanks all for replys.
Unfortunately here in Rome amps are not very well welcomed by the neighbours(and thus by the police neither). That's why i thought that the 2.5W speakers of the e363 and the Go:piano would be a good middle ground.
However i might be interested in some sort of external amplification just to improve the sound quality.
Is the Piaggero better for the speakers or for the sound sampling?
I play classical music and indian music and also a bit of improvisation on the tempered system, I really only care about the piano sound, but i'd be nice to be able to play an mp3 tanpura sound in the background like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BncdMEMkxDI


Edited by amadeok (08/11/17 02:38 PM)
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#2872408 - 08/11/17 02:47 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: stillearning]
Polychrest Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 90
Loc: Upper Canada
Originally Posted By: stillearning
Originally Posted By: mate stubb

What's wrong with this picture? Nothing, except the chainsaw is a Stihl and therefore you will never get it started.

Gotta disagree here. I live on a farm and have several Stihl products, including chainsaws. Start on first or second pull everytime. Never a problem. They'd be my first choice to run through a Roland keyboard amp.

Gotta agree with you categorically, Stillearning (Stihlearning?). The chainsaw in the picture is mine. I've owned it for the better part of three decades. It starts every time. Like the Roland KC upon which it sits (which I also owned, to my discredit), it makes a god-awful racket. When you crank it up, people nearby move away from it. If you run it too long, the neighbours complain.

If Stihl chainsaws were keyboards, they'd be red: over-priced, but well-engineered, versatile and dependable.

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#2872417 - 08/11/17 03:31 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: Polychrest]
xKnuckles Offline
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Registered: 07/24/13
Posts: 1476
Loc: United Kingdom
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#2872441 - 08/11/17 05:36 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: stillearning]
mate stubb Offline
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Registered: 10/26/03
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Originally Posted By: stillearning
Originally Posted By: mate stubb

What's wrong with this picture? Nothing, except the chainsaw is a Stihl and therefore you will never get it started.

Gotta disagree here. I live on a farm and have several Stihl products, including chainsaws. Start on first or second pull everytime. Never a problem. They'd be my first choice to run through a Roland keyboard amp.

Maybe you're thinking of Craftsman?


Live anywhere near Missouri? I'll invite you over every time I need to start a small gas engine including my Stihl chainsaw. They all hate me, and will never start for me.
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Moe
---
Jazzooo: "Yes, there is an appeal to having your entire catalog on a few little pieces of dark plastic that are easily lost under the seat."

http://www.hotrodmotm.com

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#2872443 - 08/11/17 05:51 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: mate stubb]
Karl Schmeer Offline
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Registered: 11/09/08
Posts: 160
Loc: St. Louis
If you get over to the southern end of St. Louis county Ill help
ya. My Bro inlaws trim trees and swear by em. If not used for a while you have to pull the spark plug and clean it.
gotta go out right now or I would elaborate.
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#2872445 - 08/11/17 06:22 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: amadeok]
AnotherScott Online   content
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Registered: 10/19/09
Posts: 10737
Originally Posted By: amadeok
Is the Piaggero better for the speakers or for the sound sampling?...I really only care about the piano sound

Not all piaggeros are the same. I've played three of them. Strictly in terms of piano sound, the NP-V80 sounded noticeably better than the NP-V60, and the NP-30 sounded noticeably better than the NP-V80. I'm guessing (though I don't know for a fact) that the newer versions of the NP-30 (NP-31, NP-32, and the 61 key versions) sound at least as good as the NP-30 did. But I don't think I'd want to play for people with the NP-30's built-in speakers, especially outdoors.
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#2872449 - 08/11/17 07:30 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: AnotherScott]
burningbusch Offline
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Registered: 10/22/00
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Would be fun to find an old Pianet T. Very portable, not very heavy and completely passive. Just add some basic amplification and you're set. I think the sound is more fitting the street than an electronic keyboard.

Busch.

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#2872451 - 08/11/17 08:21 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: burningbusch]
AnotherScott Online   content
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Registered: 10/19/09
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Originally Posted By: burningbusch
Would be fun to find an old Pianet T. Very portable, not very heavy and completely passive. Just add some basic amplification and you're set. I think the sound is more fitting the street than an electronic keyboard.

though it does require very different playing technique than typical solo piano playing, as there's no sustain pedal.
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Maybe this is the best place for a shameless plug! Our new video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ZRC3b4p4EI is a 40 minute adaptation of T. S. Eliot's "Prufrock" - check it out!

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#2872456 - 08/11/17 09:09 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: AnotherScott]
waygetter Offline
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#2872483 - 08/12/17 05:12 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: Polychrest]
Synthoid Offline
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Registered: 12/04/03
Posts: 9380
Loc: Pennsylvania, USA
Originally Posted By: Polychrest
The chainsaw in the picture is mine. I've owned it for the better part of three decades. It starts every time. Like the Roland KC upon which it sits


Hope you don't mind that I used your picture. I did a search for Chainsaw + Roland Amp, and there it was. smile

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#2872507 - 08/12/17 07:17 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: mate stubb]
stillearning Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 06/27/13
Posts: 283
Originally Posted By: mate stubb
Originally Posted By: stillearning
Originally Posted By: mate stubb

What's wrong with this picture? Nothing, except the chainsaw is a Stihl and therefore you will never get it started.

Gotta disagree here. I live on a farm and have several Stihl products, including chainsaws. Start on first or second pull everytime. Never a problem. They'd be my first choice to run through a Roland keyboard amp.

Maybe you're thinking of Craftsman?


Live anywhere near Missouri? I'll invite you over every time I need to start a small gas engine including my Stihl chainsaw. They all hate me, and will never start for me.

Sorry, no. We're in Northeast Ohio, little township between Cleveland and Akron. We use two Stihl chainsaws, Wood Boss 028 AV's for clearing downed trees on horse trails. I've found keeping the spark plug clean and the air intake free of dirt is all it takes. They start right up. If I ever run mine through a Roland amp, (I've got one from the old days) I promise to shoot a video!
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#2872521 - 08/12/17 08:37 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: Synthoid]
Polychrest Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 90
Loc: Upper Canada
Originally Posted By: Synthoid
Originally Posted By: Polychrest
The chainsaw in the picture is mine. I've owned it for the better part of three decades. It starts every time. Like the Roland KC upon which it sits

Hope you don't mind that I used your picture. I did a search for Chainsaw + Roland Amp, and there it was. smile

No problem at all. Ours is the one audience to which this pic speaks clearly. Love that the quality of Stihl saws became the issue, rather than that of Roland KC's. Tough crowd.

Another chainsaw maintenance tip for easy starting: always use clean fresh stabilized gas in the thing, preferably ethanol-free. Dump any gas that has sat in the saw unused for more than a month or two.

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#2872535 - 08/12/17 09:54 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: Polychrest]
pjd Offline
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Registered: 09/14/12
Posts: 68
Loc: Massachusetts
I'll have to give the Klipsch KMC3 a listen one of these days.

I've been trying for minimum weight, maximum portability with good sound. The JBL Charge 2 is only 1 pound (vs. 8 for the KMC3) and I can sling it into the outer pocket of a soft gig bag along with a small Rolls mixer. The whole rig (Triton Taktile plus Charge 2 plus mixer) is a light, one-hand carry.

One thing I would definitely steer clear of -- small guitar amps like the Fly. I tried the Fly 3 and in 10 seconds knew it wasn't for keys.

Low organ tones, french horn (!) and strings quickly reveal flaws when testing (at least for me).

All the best -- pj

P.S. The Charge 2 may not have enough umph depending on the street.


Edited by pjd (08/12/17 09:55 AM)

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#2872565 - 08/12/17 02:50 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: Polychrest]
stillearning Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 06/27/13
Posts: 283
Originally Posted By: Polychrest

No problem at all. Ours is the one audience to which this pic speaks clearly. Love that the quality of Stihl saws became the issue, rather than that of Roland KC's. Tough crowd.

Another chainsaw maintenance tip for easy starting: always use clean fresh stabilized gas in the thing, preferably ethanol-free. Dump any gas that has sat in the saw unused for more than a month or two.

Good point. We buy pre-mixed two-stroke fuel from Sears Hardware. Comes in pre-mixed quart containers, ethanol-free. Not the cheapest way to go, but hassle free, and about the only thing I buy at Sears.
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#2872569 - 08/12/17 03:43 PM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: pjd]
AnotherScott Online   content
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Registered: 10/19/09
Posts: 10737
Originally Posted By: pjd
I'll have to give the Klipsch KMC3 a listen one of these days.

I've been trying for minimum weight, maximum portability with good sound. The JBL Charge 2 is only 1 pound (vs. 8 for the KMC3) and I can sling it into the outer pocket of a soft gig bag along with a small Rolls mixer. The whole rig (Triton Taktile plus Charge 2 plus mixer) is a light, one-hand carry.

Yeah, different benefits there.

And getting back to the Klipsch I mentioned that I assumed the Street Cube EX would be better, albeit at significantly greater price and weight, but actually, that would be an interesting test... looking at the specs in more detail, I'd now be hesitant to even make that assumption.
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#2872591 - 08/13/17 02:06 AM Re: Keyboard to play in the street [Re: AnotherScott]
amadeok Offline
Member

Registered: 08/10/17
Posts: 3
Loc: Rome
I went with the psr-e363, i'm happy i did. Was cheap also.
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