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What Keyboard should I get? (opinions wanted)


Jamiel

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To get to the point,

I play many different styles of music.

the main group I play with now is a lot of reggae/rock mixed with hip-hop/latin/and just fusion stuff.

 

therefore, an organ is essential to my rig.

I have the Hammond xk-1 which covers my organ needs very well. on the bottom I've been using my Yamaha P-120 through a Crybaby Bass Wah pedal. (it's almost become a trademark of mine... I've been able to really get it moving at a fast rate for as long as I want. you should see my leg lol)

 

anyway,

the yamaha is heavy, weighted 88 action, and all that good stuff.(and mine is also malfunctioning as of yesterday). I enjoy playing on weighted keys, and enjoy a good piano sound, but for gigs I mostly use Rhodes/Electric piano and Clavinet sounds besides the organ (hammond) and a cheaper roland sampling synth.

 

I want to (like many keyboard players out there), get a Nord Electro 73. What I am discovering is one of the biggest features about the Nord Electro is the organ...(which I don't need). what I'm looking for is a lighterweight keyboard with supreme Electromechanical keyboard sounds.

Rhodes Mk I stage or suitcase keyboard sounds are CRUCIAL and being able to have effects such as autopan, phase, wah, etc. are very much wanted.

 

Would it really be worth it to me to buy a Nord Electro 2 for the piano sounds? or is there perhaps someone who can tell me of another keyboard that has fantastic rhodes/clavinet sounds?

 

Very much appreciated, thanks

I am what I am, and that's all I am.
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Dude, your rig rocks already. I suggest getting along with it for some time to come. Using the extra FX can only make it cooler and more unique. No need to spend money. The NE2 has better clavs than your P120, but the Rhodes on the P120 is strong. I don't think it is worth spending money to improve what you have. It is a solid rig. May you make many more years of music on it.
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Eric - you might have missed the part that says his P-120 is, "...malfunctioning as of yesterday" :)

 

Jamiel - The Electro is very cool, but remember that it has a semi-weighted/more-like-an-organ keybed. It's also got love-it-or-hate-it acoustic piano sounds.

 

If you're going to play organ on the XK-1 exclusively, and don't wanna have organ features overlapping, you should definitely check out the Kurzweil PC1x with the Classic Keys ROM. Alot of people rate the EPs on the Classic Keys ROM as on par with the Electro. You'll also get 88 weighted keys, excellent Kurzweil acoustic pianos, and a whole bunch of additional voices should you need them (Orchestral ROM is included these days, and you get Mellotron sounds on the Classic Keys ROM which is a huge bonus for me personally).

 

Definitely worth checking out if it suits you:

http://www.kurzweilmusicsystems.com/products.html?Id=282

 

If the 88 is too big for you, and you want something lighter, you can also consider the new 76 key PC1se (which has the Classic Keys ROM included):

http://www.kurzweilmusicsystems.com/products.html?Id=1835

 

If I was in your shoes, I'll go the PC1se. It's also sexier with the brushed aluminium top. :)

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I played the Kawai MP8, the Yamaha CP300, and the RD700SX side by side, and I chose the RD-700SX for because of it's "Superior Grand" sound.

 

Add the SRX-12 Expansion Card and you have the best Rhodes sound in hardware.

 

Jazz+

 Find 600 of my jazz piano arrangements and tutorials for educational purposes at patreon.com/HarryLikas Harry was the Technical Editor of Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book" and helped develop "The Jazz Piano Book."

 

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I played the Kawai MP8, the Yamaha CP300, and the RD700SX side by side, and I chose the RD-700SX because of it's "Superior Grand" sound.

 

Add the SRX-12 Expansion Card and you have the best Rhodes sound in hardware.

 

Jazz+

 Find 600 of my jazz piano arrangements and tutorials for educational purposes at patreon.com/HarryLikas Harry was the Technical Editor of Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book" and helped develop "The Jazz Piano Book."

 

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Eric speaks words of wisdom. Get the P120 fixed for a bill or two. It has years of life left in it I'd deem. Things go haywire on keyboards from time to time and they need to be fixed. Don't scrap it just cause.

Kawai C-60 Grand Piano : Hammond A-100 : Hammond SK2 : Yamaha CP4 : Yamaha Montage 7 : Moog Sub 37

 

My latest album: Funky organ, huge horn section

https://bobbycressey.bandcamp.com/album/cali-native

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Originally posted by Bobadohshe:

Eric speaks words of wisdom. Get the P120 fixed for a bill or two. It has years of life left in it I'd deem. Things go haywire on keyboards from time to time and they need to be fixed. Don't scrap it just cause.

I agree with this statement. If your set on getting a new keyboard though the Kawaii MP8 or Yamaha S90ES would probably serve you best.

Begin the day with a friendly voice A companion, unobtrusive

- Rush

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Yes, I agree with Silver Dragon on the S90ES, but that's what I play. Since you're used to the Yamaha balanced keys already, it makes sense to me.

 

The S90ES has got a great piano, good Rhodes, and it's a Motif synth. I play the ES and a Hammond XK-2. One of these years, I'll trade the XK-2 for an XK-3,but I'm still recovering from the S90ES gas attack.

 

The RD700SX is also a great board--good action, good piano, good sounds, but its less of a synth than the S90ES. I had my heart set on the RD, until Yammy came out with the 90ES--it's like they were reading my mind. Spooky!

 

The Electro, nice as it is, is too organ like, as someone else pointed out. However, it would make a great second tier with your XK.

 

The Nord stage has a much better piano and would better fit your needs, but I don't like the action, personally. I like the sounds, and the synth is fun to use--very easy UI, I thought.

 

But, while the Motif system in the S90ES is a challenge to figure out, it is a very powerful piece of hardware--one can do just about anything with it, considering you can buy plug in synths for it to do FM modeling, Analog modeling, Pipe and reed modeling, vocoders, and even GM, that expand the thing using every synth technology Yamaha has developed in the last 20 years or so. It's really a wonder.

 

Maybe I should sell them?

regards,

 

--kwgm

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Also even if the clavs on your P120 are a little lamer than some of the others out there, this will be alleviated by the using the wah. Even a lame clav sounds good played through a wah.

Kawai C-60 Grand Piano : Hammond A-100 : Hammond SK2 : Yamaha CP4 : Yamaha Montage 7 : Moog Sub 37

 

My latest album: Funky organ, huge horn section

https://bobbycressey.bandcamp.com/album/cali-native

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+1 for the PC1se! :D (If you didn't want to try and salvage your P-120.) It has wonderful Acous. Pianos, and the EPs are excellent - I like some of them better than my Electro. The action is perfect for my tastes, and the other sounds (brass, strings, and synth sounds) can be very expressive using the controllers available. I would think the sounds are on par with the Yamahas and Rolands, but I have not compared between them. The only real weakness in the PC1se (or PC1) are the organs, which I won't use since they are covered by my Electro. IMO, I think the PC1se is the ideal "bottom" board for gigging, with very extensive MIDI controller features. Only had mine for a week, but have no regrets or complaints at all. :thu:

Jim

PC3X, PC1se, NE2 61, DSI P08, ARP Odyssey MkII 2810, ARP Little Brother, Moog Slim Phatty, Doepfer Dark Energy, Arturia MiniBrute, Microkorg, Motion Sound KP200S,
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How does that new pc1se action compare to other brands action wise? I would like a 76 note with weighted action but there is not much out there and the pc1se is not out over here in Europe for a while.
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jimtheswede, i too would like to hear some comparison of the PC1se and the Electro. Not many of us have the opportunity to play them side by side. How would you compare the action of the PC1se to the Electro's? Is it significantly more weighted? Any chance of a little MP3/track with some Wurlies and Rhodes played on the PC1se and the same thing played on an Electro? (realize its a bit of effort, but thought it wouldnt hurt to ask :) )
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you know, I had an odd revelation today...

I play in a couple different groups,

and today am doing more reggae rock fusion (which involves latin and hip-hop)

 

and there is another smaller group that is doin well that consists of me, a drummer, and a guitar player. and I cover the bass part with lefty.

today I hooked up the Hammond XK-1 to my simpler Roland keyboard and was able to have my two manual organ. but even better, I've been figuring out ways to mix in all the cool roland effects over the bottom tier, so now I've got an awesome array of bass sounds with plenty of funk.

 

And whoever it was that mentioned that my P120 had a nice rhodes imitation reminded me of why I wanted it so bad back in the day. so I believe that you are all right, I will have it repaired, and hell, even if I DON'T bring it out to most shows, I will definetly enjoy it for more years to come.

 

Kurzweil huh? I've never really thought of a kurzweil... hrm....

I am what I am, and that's all I am.
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I haven't recently played very much on many other weighted or semi-weighted boards (other than my own - NE61 and a Kurz SP76) so it's hard to compare to others. I can say that I like the PC1se action much better than any other keyboards I played when I recently visited a Musician's Friend warehouse. I find the action on the PC1se easy to play, and it feels like a real quality board. It reminds me of playing my mom's Everett upright. Though heavier, it also seems somewhat similar to the action on my SP76 (semi-weighted) that I used previously. I've read that some might think it is too light, but not for me - it is just right.

 

As far as comparing with the Electro, the PC1se has a heavier feel. Definitely more "piano-like" and solid, where the Electro feels a bit soft with more upward spring to the keys. Much quicker action on the Nord for organ smears, "machine-gun" licks, etc. I would like to compare the actions on the PC1se vs. the Nord Stage - I wonder if they are similar? I haven't had the opportunity to play on the Nord Stage yet - they are still kind of scarce around here.

 

As for doing a MP3 comparison - I might be able to do that (if I can find the time). I recently bought one of those new Zoom H4 recorders that would make it pretty easy. How would I link to the files? :confused:

PC3X, PC1se, NE2 61, DSI P08, ARP Odyssey MkII 2810, ARP Little Brother, Moog Slim Phatty, Doepfer Dark Energy, Arturia MiniBrute, Microkorg, Motion Sound KP200S,
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Originally posted by Jamiel:

...today I hooked up the Hammond XK-1 to my simpler Roland keyboard and was able to have my two manual organ...

But that was without a weighted keyboard, correct? Are guys with one organ keyboard and one weighted keyboard actually using the weighted keyboard for the lower manual? :confused:

 

The reason I ask is that I tried an experiment today with a borrowed digital piano, my XK-1, and MIDI (which I had never worked with but with some luck I seem to have muddled through). I was able to coax the piano to drive the lower manual, but the touch on a weighted keyboard was obviously all wrong. In an almost unusable way, IMO.

 

John

GP sacred cow of the year: Jimmy Vaughan
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Originally posted by jimtheswede:

As for doing a MP3 comparison - I might be able to do that (if I can find the time). I recently bought one of those new Zoom H4 recorders that would make it pretty easy. How would I link to the files? :confused:

You could post it on your myspace, or something like http://www.megaupload.com/

 

Click the FAQ on that site for more info. You can then just post us the URL to the download.

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Originally posted by b3_john:

Originally posted by Jamiel:

...today I hooked up the Hammond XK-1 to my simpler Roland keyboard and was able to have my two manual organ...

But that was without a weighted keyboard, correct? Are guys with one organ keyboard and one weighted keyboard actually using the weighted keyboard for the lower manual? :confused:

 

The reason I ask is that I tried an experiment today with a borrowed digital piano, my XK-1, and MIDI (which I had never worked with but with some luck I seem to have muddled through). I was able to coax the piano to drive the lower manual, but the touch on a weighted keyboard was obviously all wrong. In an almost unusable way, IMO.

 

John

Well, when playing with Carbon Culture, I use all three for bigger shows. (Hammond XK-1 over Yamaha P120, cheaper roland to the right). For smaller shows, or ones where I don't feel like bringing as much, I bring the Yamaha and Hammond.

I don't think I've ever played with one weighted action board linked to the organ. When I link up the Hammond to another board, it's usually the roland, which has very light synth action. I much prefer the Yamaha weighted action to be independent for piano/clavinet/E.P. usage. (but I also leave the Yamaha independent because I play it through a Crybaby Bass Wah Pedal).

I am what I am, and that's all I am.
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