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Casio - Seems like a great deal


MIDIdiot

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Currently on sale at Costco. I'm about to go for it. Any feedback on the PX-130?

 

http://www.costco.ca/Browse/Product.aspx?Prodid=10331957

 

It is to be for recreational use. Replacing an old Roland FP(circa 1995) which was great in it's day. The price is perfect for me. I do not want to invest more than $500 but I also don't want a cheap piece of junk that sounds bad.

 

Much appreciated.

 

 

 

 

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One of my kids just took advantage of the same Costco offer. CA$429, rebate on checkout, free delivery.

 

I think it's the deal of the century. It's a super convenient, nice sounding and nice playing package. Bonus USB MIDI for both PC and Mac, no driver download needed. :thu:

"........! Try to make It..REAL! compared to what? ! ! ! " - BOPBEEPER
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No question it's a good deal -- especially compared to M-Audio's strange foray into home console pianos.

 

I just recommended this keyboard to a co-worker recently, who is getting back into piano after many years and does not gig.

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Bought one recently:

 

Pros: Good piano sound. Some of the other, more percussive sounds are fine, such as vibes.

 

Standard USB MIDI works automatically in versions of Windows that support USB MIDI (XP and later), Mac, and Linux.

 

Piano action is good, and fully weighted. (Not like the horrendous M-Audio semi-weighted stuff).

 

Lightweight compared to other offerings. Very portable.

 

Can attach the optional SP-32 pedal for damper, sustenuto, and soft pedals. NOTE: Casio web site says you can't use the SP-32 without the optional stand too. That's not true. It's just that there's a metal beam that runs through the pedal which is meant to attach to the stand at both sides. But, you can use the pedal if you don't mind the metal beam sticking out on each side of the pedal, or as I did, unscrew the pedal and remove the beam entirely.

 

Fairly easy to setup and customize. Unlike the M-audio 88ES, settings are remembered after the unit is turned off.

 

Cons: String sounds, and other non-percussive sounds, are awful.

 

Pedals are hardwired to transmit on MIDI channels 1, 2, and 3 simultaneously. Changing the channel that the keyboard transmits upon does not change this. In other words, the PX line doesn't appear to be well-designed to control other sound modules.

 

The SP-32 uses a non-standard jack. It's pricey too.

 

Is not USB-powered. You still need to plug in its AC wallwart, even when USB-attached to your computer.

 

No Mod or Pitch wheels.

 

Volume knob does not transmit MIDI volume changes.

 

Uses mini jacks for audio output.

 

 

No MIDI in/out jacks. So, you can't directly attach it to another MIDI device. You can attach it only to a USB hub (ie, computer).

 

Overall: If all you want is an inexpensive 88 key piano-action keyboard, playing a piano sound, you can't go wrong. For piano, it feels and sounds as nice as you'll get for its price. Especially if you intend to carry it around, you'll appreciate the weight.

 

If you want something more, especially to control other sound modules, you may want to check out some other gear.

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That's great, thank you very much for the thoughts.

 

I was a bit surprised no 1/4 in output which

 

would have given me flexibility but by far the main use for 99% of the time will be for strictly piano playing at home and for piano lessons for my kids if they so desire. So I ordered it last night! Go UPS go!

 

Thanks again.

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the only terminals listed on Casio website are:

 

USB to Host (USB MIDI) Yes, supporting XP, Vista, Mac

Damper (Sustain) Yes

Connector for SP32 (3 Pedal Unit) Yes

Headphones Yes x 2

 

Is it OK to use the headphone-out for the method mentioned by Learjeff (1/8 -> 1/8 adaptor rca -> 1/4)?

 

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Yes, with one important exception discussed below.

 

Modern headphone outputs are basically line outputs that are beefed up to source more current and handle a lower input impedance.

 

However, it's stereo, so you'd want a cable that's 1/8" stereo on one end with two RCA on the other, and use two RCA-1/4" connectors. Ideally, use stereo amplification and pan them hard right/left or adjust to taste. If you're using a mono amp with two indepent input channels, plug both in and see whether you prefer a mono mix or just one side or something in between.

 

If you're using a mono amp without two independent channels, just use one side. Don't try to mix to mono using an adaptor cable or connector, because output drivers were not designed to be used this way -- the left and right sides would be fighting each other trying to control a single voltage to two different values.

 

HTH

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Only reason I can think of is the weight of the 1/4 adaptor-cables. Might be a bit much after time for the 1/8' jack. But, if you use some form of strain releif, like supporting the cables so there's no downward pressure on the jack, should work fine.

 

Buddy of mine uses one connected to his Triton Rack as his stage piano. He loves the feel, and at the price considers it disposable.

 

"In the beginning, Adam had the blues, 'cause he was lonesome.

So God helped him and created woman.

 

Now everybody's got the blues."

 

Willie Dixon

 

 

 

 

 

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Only reason I can think of is the weight of the 1/4 adaptor-cables. Might be a bit much after time for the 1/8' jack. But, if you use some form of strain releif, like supporting the cables so there's no downward pressure on the jack, should work fine.

 

Ah, ok. Thanks for the insight.

"........! Try to make It..REAL! compared to what? ! ! ! " - BOPBEEPER
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Is it OK to use the headphone-out for the method mentioned by Learjeff (1/8 -> 1/8 adaptor rca -> 1/4)?

 

Yes, but you must be very careful, as the weight of the cables/adaptor will put undue strain on the jack on the keyboard. I would put a velcro loop on the side/back of the keyboard or stand such that there is no weight at all pulling down on the cable connected to the headphone output of the keyboard.

 

(edit to note that I wrote this and was called away, then clicked "Post" when I returned, in case it looks like I ignored the other responses above... ;) )

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IIRC from looking at a 130, I thought the headphone is a 1/4" stereo jack. Am I wrong? would it work with a 1/4" trs to two 1/4" ts? If it's 1/8" headphone jacks, would this 1/8" stereo to 2 1/4" jacks work: http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/CMP159/ ?

 

Either way, it needs a male TRS (stereo) connector (of the appropriate size to connect to the Casio) that terminates in 2 TS (mono) connectors (of the appropriate type for whatever you're connecting it to); male for the latter if you're connecting it to something within the reach of the adaptor (i.e. a direct box or small mixer on the piano), or female if you want to simply connect regular TS type instrument cables to a mixer or amp.

 

 

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thanks. all I really care about is having a light weight piano board. I don't care about any other sounds - for rhodes I can midi it up to the NE2. I may go for the 130.

The 130 doesn't have MIDI in and out. IMO, this is a fatal flaw, at least with regard to using the 130 as a controller. And when you consider that the PX-120 did have MIDI, it's even more baffling. Why did Casio remove it?! I think it's a ploy to get people to spend more money on the 330. In a previous thread, I asked Mike Martin to shed some light on this but he didn't respond. :|

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Is there any reason why an 1/8" to 2x1/4" Y-cable wouldn't be preferable? I just don't get the RCA step.
Just that they're hard to find. The cable I cited is easy to find at RadioShack. I suppose you can order a 1/8" stereo to 2x1/4" cable somewhere.

 

Of course, make sure it's a stereo cable and not a "Y" cable (1/8" mono to two 1/4").

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IIRC from looking at a 130, I thought the headphone is a 1/4" stereo jack. Am I wrong? would it work with a 1/4" trs to two 1/4" ts? If it's 1/8" headphone jacks, would this 1/8" stereo to 2 1/4" jacks work: http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/CMP159/ ?
That looks ideal. A short run with thin cables, so not likely to cause strain on the 1/8" connector.

 

I guess things have improved in the last few years. This *should* be a standard cable, but I generally didn't find them.

 

Another cable that should be common is a snake with 8x1/4" TRS on one end, T shorted to R, and 8x1/4" TS on the other end. Perfect for feeding a recording station off a mixer's Insert jacks. I recommended to Hosa that they make it and they said they'd look into it ... which seemed to be the end of that. Instead, I suggest an 8x1/4 TRS to 8xRCA with 8 adaptors, which amounts to the same thing.

 

The adaptors are just a workaround, and not the ideal solution.

 

The funny part is all the silly stuff people recommend on recording forums (like making your own snake).

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Just that they're hard to find. The cable I cited is easy to find at RadioShack. I suppose you can order a 1/8" stereo to 2x1/4" cable somewhere.

 

Ok, just wanted to make sure. A regular insert cable will do the job then. I think Daviel's right - the headphone jacks look to be 1/4". :) phew.

"........! Try to make It..REAL! compared to what? ! ! ! " - BOPBEEPER
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The 130 doesn't have MIDI in and out. IMO, this is a fatal flaw, at least with regard to using the 130 as a controller. And when you consider that the PX-120 did have MIDI, it's even more baffling. Why did Casio remove it?! I think it's a ploy to get people to spend more money on the 330. In a previous thread, I asked Mike Martin to shed some light on this but he didn't respond. :|

 

That's disappointing. I guess to keep the cost down (which I don't mind because I really didn't want to spend a penny more).

 

There is the MIDI to USB connector though. Curious what types of stuff folks would do with the 130 and a computer...

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Curious what types of stuff folks would do with the 130 and a computer...

 

-record audio to the computer (headphone jack out) and play/record software instruments (USB). The only reason for an actual 5-pin midi jack is to connect with and control other hardware instruments or modules using the same.

 

Just thinking out loud.. the only thing that would bug me about using the headphone jack is that it would cut the onboard speakers. To my way of thinking, the speakers are the biggest perk of these lightweight boards.

"........! Try to make It..REAL! compared to what? ! ! ! " - BOPBEEPER
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If you're using a mono amp without two independent channels, just use one side. Don't try to mix to mono using an adaptor cable or connector, because output drivers were not designed to be used this way -- the left and right sides would be fighting each other trying to control a single voltage to two different values.

 

HTH

 

 

The correct approach is to make a mixer circuit which combines the audio signals without overloading the outputs. This kind of circuit will safely load the outputs as they are designed to be and provides very nice even mix of the two signals to the output.

 

A mixer circuit of this kind does not have to be anything complicated. Two correctly selected resistors will do the job very well. The circuit below shows a circuit which works very well.

 

KLONK HERE FOR CIRCUIT DIAGRAM

 

This circuit construction provides 10 kohm input impedance and around 5 kohm output impedance. Both of the values are well within what you would expect from most audio equipment.

 

=====================

 

I made a cable with a 1/4" stereo plug on one end and a 1/4" mono plug on the other end. The stereo plug goes to the headphone jack on my keyboard. The mono plug goes to the mixer input. Two small 10 kohm resistors can be used and mounted directly within the 1/4" mono plug if the barrel is large enough.

 

Tom

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent." - Victor Hugo
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...if the barrel is large enough.

 

There's Tom again, bragging about the size of his barrel... :thu:

 

:laugh:

 

Yeah.

 

Know what? I think you are baiting me, Sven Golly.

 

It's best that I stop with this dialog before I'm DB-Banninated by the NAMM-MEISTER. :cry:

"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent." - Victor Hugo
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The correct approach is to make a mixer circuit which combines the audio signals without overloading the outputs. This kind of circuit will safely load the outputs as they are designed to be and provides very nice even mix of the two signals to the output.

So, in short (pun intended), it's a summing cable, yes?

 

 

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