Yamaha Clavinova review

This article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Yamaha Clavinova Series. If you are interested in buying the Clavinova or you just want to know more about the piano, you should keep reading.

If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com 

Price

The Clavinova Series is a well-made piano and its price stands up for it. The prices can vary depending on the piano series and also the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 2 300 and 20 000 euros. We have provided you with some online stores, where you can compare the prices. 

Product Description

Yamaha Clavinova CLP Digital Piano

The Yamaha Clavinova CLP series is considered “the heart of Yamaha innovation.” This piano blurs the line between acoustic pianos and digital pianos, bringing a piano-playing experience that is so authentic, you’ll swear you’re playing an acoustic piano. While traditional digital pianos have key sensors that have limited abilities to translate expression (soft, hard, staccato, or legato touch), the Yamaha Clavinova CLP series has the responsiveness you’d expect from a concert grand. You’ll experience weighted, graded keys that produce the authentic touch, response, and natural key return of a grand piano while capturing the colors and nuance when playing staccato, legato, and everything in between.

Yamaha Clavinova CSP Digital Piano

The Yamaha Clavinova CSP digital piano is packed with features—but so intuitive that anyone can learn to use it. This digital piano’s heralding feature is its “audio to score” function. Choose a song you want to learn…any song from your music library. The Yamaha Clavinova CSP will translate the song immediately into a score and provide Stream Lights, a play-by-lights feature, that indicates which keys to play so you can play along. Worried about sounding like a beginner? The CSP Clavinova will play a piano accompaniment with you to enhance the experience.

Yamaha Clavinova CVP Digital Piano

The Yamaha Clavinova CVP digital piano is a great choice for experienced musicians or those looking to do more with a piano. With the Yamaha CVP, you can “jam” with up to 3 other professional virtual musicians in 40 different musical styles. The Yamaha CVP takes the real concert grand piano touch and feel to a whole other level with expressive pedal technology*, real touch technology, and more. You can even record your music with just the touch of a button.

CLP Series

Pros 

  • Gorgeous looking furniture stand.
  • Three pedals.
  • Great sound quality.
  • Ample sound memory.
  • Properly weighted and graded keys.
  • 6-level touch sensitivity.
  • Good enough speakers.
  • built-in 16-track recorder.
  • can save up to 250 songs.
  • can connect with PCs and iOS devices.

Cons

  • Not portable.
  • More speakers could have been provided for added volume.

CLP Series

Pros

  • Stunning CFX sound engine and Bösendorfer Imperial grand piano sound.
  • Real wood graded hammer action keys.
  • Authentic piano experience.
  • Beautiful console.
  • Smart Pianist app.
  • A vast amount of voices and accompaniments.

Cons

  • Price

CVP Series

Pros

  • The super articulation voices feature and the samples of real musical instruments give a natural feel for the music.
  • Players can enjoy karaoke with the songs that are stored on the piano. The lyrics are shown in the display and the words change the colour when the song keeps progressing. 
  • The touch screen feature of the piano makes it easy to operate.
  • This piano has an active voice guide feature to notify the current operation that is been executed.
  • The USB audio recorder feature helps to record the performance in a flash drive.
  • Features a highly functional speaker with a bass sound.
  • The piano is compatible with MIDI and iOS devices. 
  • Pianists can connect a microphone and state singing with this piano.

Cons

  • This piano is not a budget-friendly option
  • The piano is quite heavy and hard to assemble without assistance.

Is Yamaha Clavinova digital pianos Worth it?

Yamaha Clavinova digital pianos are such a versatile, phenomenal instrument. With a beautiful piano sound sampled from some of the most prestigious concert grand pianos in the industry and features galore, Yamaha Clavinovas truly are the pinnacle of all digital pianos. 

Yamaha designed the Clavinova to faithfully recreate the power and performance of the concert grand. Each new feature such as the Yamaha GrandTouch Keyboard, Spruce Cone Speakers*, and full dot LCD screens* are built to maximize the playing experience.

In-Depth Review of the above articles

Benefits:

CLP Series

The grand piano-like feel gives you total control over the finest points of your performance style.

CSP Series

With descending Stream Lights that show which keys to play next, anyone can master their favorite songs and have fun doing it.

CVP Series

One instrument is all you need for everything from the gorgeous ensemble performances to karaoke.

Specifications:

Yamaha Clavinova Specifications vary depending on the series you are interested in. 

Quality

CLP Series Sound Quality

The CLP-700 series faithfully reproduces the dynamic range and diverse tone variation of the CFX and the Bösendorfer Imperial. New binaural sampling provides the full ambiance of the sound and eliminates stress while playing with headphones. Virtual Resonance Modeling (VRM) intricately simulates the full sympathetic sounds created by the overlapping resonance of the strings and body of a grand piano. The exquisite piano sound makes every song sound great.

CSP Series Sound Quality

The variety and quality of non-piano Voices in the CSP models are comparable to those of high-end synthesizers found in professional studios. We have room for just an overview, so I’ll start by saying that, with the CSP’s 692 Voices and 29 Drum/FX kits, if you’ve heard a sound in a song in any style of music, it’s probably in here.

CVP Series

You will get a natural, comfortable feel when playing this piano. Playing it feels like you are playing a mechanical, acoustic piano. It is also easy to play, making it a perfect option for every music enthusiast out there. It incorporates 984 instrumental voices that can enhance your performances no matter where you are.

Additional Features:

CLP Series

Playability

Featuring the latest GrandTouch™ & GrandTouch-S™ keyboards with a broad dynamic range of touch and response on the level of a grand piano. Excellent consistency and nuanced expression give the pianist the utmost control over touch.

Sensitivity

Grand Expression Modeling is a ground-breaking new technology that enables the pianist to use their techniques to produce the limitless tonal variation unique to grand pianos. The ability to vary the intensity and speed of touch to produce different tones adds another dimension to the joy of musical expression.

CSP Series

Realistic concert piano sound, immersive concert grand piano experience (even with headphones), hundreds of high-quality instrument sounds to choose from, weighted and textured keys that feel—and play—like an authentic concert grand piano, karaoke mode, audio recorder, & more.

CVP Series

Play by light technology, karaoke mode, style recommender, super articulation voices, USB audio recorder, LCD screen, & more!

Warranty

Yamaha has a 3-year warranty on Digital Pianos! Warranty services will only be provided for defective products within the Warranted Area. Yamaha will, at its option, repair or replace the product covered by this warranty if it becomes defective, malfunctions or otherwise fails to conform with this warranty under normal use and service during the term of this warranty, without charge for labor or materials.

Who Is It Best For?

CLP Series

  • People who focus on sound quality and elements of feel such as touch and pedal response
  • People seek a simple piano
  • Players of all skill levels

CSP Series

  • People who struggle to read sheet music
  • People who want to practice by themselves 
  • Beginners and players who have not played for a long time

CVP Series

  • People who want to enjoy a variety of musical genres, including jazz and pops 
  • People who want to listen to music and sing along with family and friends
  • Intermediate to advanced players

What Do People Say About It?

You can find some feedback and digital piano reviews on Amazon, Sweetwater and Thomann. A lot of people prefer buying their pianos online due to the better prices rather than in stores. The Yamaha Clavinova Digital Piano Series CLP – 725B has been rated on average 5 out of 5 stars on Thomann UK Review. The Yamaha Clavinova CLP – 775 PE has been rated on average 4 out of 5 stars on Thomann UK Review. Unfortunately, Amazon has not yet provided any reviews on any of the Clavinova Digital Piano Series.

To get a better idea of how the piano sounds and looks like, we have provided you with a couple of Youtube videos, where you can get a quick piano and sound review.

A YouTube Review #1 – Yamaha Clavinova CLP – 645 Product Overview

Youtube Review #2 – Yamaha CVP – 709 Clavinova Demo & Review

A Youtube Review #3 – Yamaha Clavinova CSP Smart Piano Demo

The Verdict: Is it Worth It?

The finest digital pianos that Yamaha makes, Clavinova pianos satisfy the needs and desires of piano lovers around the world. The amazingly accurate grand piano-like feel is the result of the skills and instincts Yamaha has developed through many years of manufacturing acoustic pianos, paired with cutting-edge technology.

If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com 

Best jazz piano – Korg Grandstage 88 Review

This article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Korg Garndstage 88. If you are interested in buying the Grandstage 88 or you just want to know more about the synthesizer, you should keep on reading. If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at http://aalbergaudio.com/

Price

The Korg Grandstage 88 is a well-made piano. The prices can vary depending on the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 1800 and 2700 euros. We have provided you with some online stores, where you can compare the prices. 

Product Description

The Korg Grandstage is a professional stage piano for stage use. Seven powerful sound engines make the Grandstage a true sound miracle. The instrument features 5 concert grand pianos and an upright piano of the highest sound quality. Korg’s RH3 keyboard reproduces even the most subtle nuances of the game. The Korg Grandstage also features many useful functions for live stage use, such as Favorite, button, a smooth sound transition, a panel lock, and much more. The Grandstage comes with a special music stand and a newly developed piano stand with a matching chrome surface. A complete stage piano system that makes every performance a real pleasure.

Pros:

  • Simple user interface 
  • Dedicated dynamics section
  • Gorgeous piano sounds
  • Beautiful real hammer-action keyboard
  • Well-build, made in Japan
  • Some of the best Pianos, Electric Pianos, and Organs
  • Controls feel solid 
  • Complete connectivity package 

Cons:

  • Best suits a very specific kind of player – jazz/classical
  • A small amount of editing options 
  • Only a single Reverb/Delay effect
  • Limited features
  • No expandable sound library

Is Korg Grandstage 88 Review Worth it?

If you want a dedicated stage piano, you will struggle to find any better than the Grandstage 88. It’s one of the best digital stage pianos on the market and has the most realistic feel in our top 12. 

Despite having around 500 high-quality preset sounds, it’s the piano voices and the keybed that make it worth buying. For jazz or classical pianists, it’s one of the best keyboard pianos around. If you play in a band that requires a wide range of sounds, you’ll get better value for money elsewhere. 

In-Depth Review of the above articles

Benefits:

Good operation thanks to an intuitive user interface

The Korg Grandstage has a clear operating concept that makes it possible to select the desired sound quickly and specifically from the abundance of sounds. In addition, all effects, EQs, and dynamic controls are directly accessible via front knobs and buttons.

A variety of useful functions for live use

The Korg Grandstage offers a wealth of useful functions for live use. Dynamic controls for direct control of articulation and expressivity can be found. Smooth Sound Transitions (SST) provides natural transitions between sounds. With the 3-band equalizer, you can adjust the sound character of the whole instrument to the acoustics of the venue.

The natural playing feel thanks to sophisticated keyboard technology

The Korg Grandstage has the weighted RH-3 keyboard. The 88 touch-sensitive piano keys react sensitively and allow nuanced control of the dynamics in interaction. The expressiveness of the Grandstage sounds is remarkable – the pure fun of playing!

Music stand, sustain pedal and piano stands included

The Grandstage comes with a special emergency console attached to the Instrument, a damper pedal (DS-1H) that supports half-pedaling, and a newly developed piano stand ( standard N-SV) with a chrome-plated surface.

Specifications:

Number of keys: 88

Type of keys: Weighted (RH3 keybed), velocity-sensitive 

Other Controllers: Pitched, Mod Wheel 

Polyphony: Up to 128 voices

Presets: 500 sounds

Effects: Reverb, Delay, EQ

Audio Outputs: 2 x ¼ (left, right), 2 x XLR (left, right)

Headphones: 1 x ¼” 

USB: 1 x Type A, 1 x Type B

MIDI I/O: In/Out

Pedal Inputs: 3 x 1/4″ (damper, switch, pedal), DS-1H included

Bench/Stand Included: Stand

Power Supply: Standard IEC AC cable 

Dimensions:

Height: 5.51”

Width: 51.6”

Depth: 14.1”

Weight: 44 lbs

Manufacturer Part Number: GRANDSTAGE88

Quality

The first thing you’re going to notice about the Grandstage is that it’s a well-built, quality piano.  And it’s not without robust features, either.

Usability

When turning on the Grandstage, all of the red backlighting turn on, which then dims down. The Piano does not instantly turn on, it has a startup time that is quick enough, around 30 seconds in total.

The sounds are pretty easy to navigate. You can think of the left hand as the ensemble section, or the “what goes layered with the piano sound” section. Turn the knob (after turning the section on with the corresponding button) and select your sound. You can then think of the right hand as the keyboard section or the piano sound. Interestingly, the Ensemble side allows you to pick any Keyboard sound, and the Keyboard side lets you pick any Ensemble sound, so in reality, any sound is available from either side.

Creating splits is easy—just press the dedicated split button! If you want to change where the split point is, just hold down the split button and press the key you want to split at. That’s it! You only get one split point, but each part gets its own MIDI channel. The swap button switches the upper and lower parts. Layering is also very easy and achieved in a similar manner via a single button push.

Speaking of changing sounds, the change between sounds are very smooth. KORG calls this the “Smooth Sound Transition” (SST) function, which creates seamless changes when you switch between sounds and effects, even while you perform. For many players, this is an essential feature.

Sound

This is GrandStage’s strongest suit, and the best reason to own one. Starting with the acoustic pianos, there are several to choose from German, Japanese, and Italian to name a few. Each sounds great and have their own character.

Additional Features:

  • Powered by 7 sound engines: SGX-2 acoustic piano; EP-1 electric pianos; CX-3, VOX, and Compact organs; AL-1 analog modeling; and the HD-1 PCM engine
  • Acclaimed RH3 keyboard responds to your every playing nuance
  • Premium RH3 weighted hammer action for realistic concert grand feel: heavier in the lower register, lighter in the upper
  • Master effects, including 3-band EQ, reverb, and delay
  • Dynamics knob lets you customize the playing feel of the keyboard in real-time
  • Favorites buttons let you register up to 64 of your go-to sounds for instant recall
  • Korg’s Smooth Sound Transition (SST) creates smooth and natural changes between sounds and effects while you perform
  • Effortless layer and split functionality
  • Panel Lock prevents sounds or settings from being inadvertently changed
  • Crafted in Japan to exacting Korg standards
  • Includes keyboard stand, DS1H damper pedal, and music rest

Warranty

Warranty coverage is provided by the Korg distributor in the country which the product was purchased. 

If you register your Korg keyboard, keyboard rack module or digital piano online within 90 days of purchase, Korg will extend your Korg manufacturer’s warranty for an extra year for free if purchased from a Korg authorized dealer. A copy of the registration confirmation email and a legible copy of the product’s sales receipt from the authorized dealer are both required for extended warranty service. To register your Korg product, please click http://i.korg.com/Register

Who Is Korg Grandstage 88 Best For?

At the end of the day, this Grandstage instrument is for someone who wants a huge, realistic library of diverse sounds & tones with the ability to find them quickly and to be able to play a big variety of musical styles.

What Do People Say About Korg Grandstage 88 ?

You can find some feedback and synthesizer reviews on Amazon and Thomann. A lot of people prefer buying their synthesizers online due to the better prices rather than in stores. Overall the Korg Grandstage 88 has been rated on average 3.3 out of 5 stars on Amazon Review. 

Amazon Reviews #1“By far the best sounding stage piano available in 2019. Could it be improved upon? Certainly. But it’s by far the richest sounding of the current lot. I took one star off for the heavier action. I have a grand piano and its action is still lighter than the GS. Why work harder than you have to? Very nice design too, relative to other stage pianos. Intuitive to use.”

Amazon Reviews  #2“Love this stage piano. I am new to playing piano and the quality of the product and features has been awesome and a great vehicle for learning!”

To get a better idea of how the Krog Granstage 88 sounds and looks like, we have provided you with a couple of Youtube videos, where you can get a quick synthesizer review and sound check.

YouTube Review #1 – This video by Sweetwater will give you a demo of the Korg Grandstage digital piano. By watching this video you will get a better idea of how to master your Korg Granstage and how to make playing on it more fun and comfortable. 

Youtube Review #2 – This video gives a quick overview of the piano and also demos the functions Korg Grandstage has to offer. 

The Verdict: Is Korg Grandstage 88 Worth It?

To sum it all up, the Grandstage sounds good, plays well, and is extremely easy to use. I’m wasn’t kidding when I said it’s one of the best sounding stage pianos, and I’m willing to overlook the slim feature set as a result.

In the end, I highly recommend the Grandstage for pianists who want a wide palette of good-to-go sounds. It sounds awesome, and if you don’t need the extra bells and whistles, the Grandstage is an easy choice.

If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com

Korg Monologue vs Minilogue

Korg Monologue 

This part of the article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Korg Monologue review. If you are interested in buying the Korg Monologue or you just want to know more about the keyboard, you should keep on reading. Check out more articles from our page Aalbergaudio.com

Product Description

The monologue is a 25-key, fully programmable monophonic analog synthesizer with a voice all its own. While sharing its sleek layout, knob-per-function workflow, and high-quality construction with the best-selling monologue, monologue is a truly unique new synth for all types of musicians; featuring new voicing and sound sculpting abilities – at an amazing price. The monologue’s completely new filter, modulation, drive, and LFO can generate powerful basses and sharp leads, creating awesome mono sounds that showcase its single-voice design. The step sequencer has also been dramatically expanded, allowing more intuitive and more complex editing. With a lineup that gives you a choice of five eye-catching colors, this compact instrument has a strong personality to match your own.

Price

The Korg Monologue is a well-made and affordable synthesizer. The prices can vary depending on the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 250 and 280 euros. From Amazon, You can buy it for 282.76 euros

Pros:

  • Twin VCOs with ring modulation, waveshaping and oscillator sync.
  • The filter and drive circuit are great.
  • The versatile sequencer — and a sequence is included in every patch.
  • Battery operation.
  • Handy oscilloscope.

Cons:

  • No power adaptor is supplied.
  • The envelope is disappointing.
  • More patch memories would have been nice.

Is Korg Monologue Worth it?

The compact and sleek Monologue is full of advanced features and functions. It has great potential for beginners, the intuitive layout and LED displays all help to guide you on the way to synth heaven, being able to connect up to a DAW and to other instruments adds to the flexibility.

At the end of the day, the Monologue is an analog beast and it’s extremely fun to play!

In-Depth Review of the Korg Monologue

Benefits:

The Korg Monologue is a 25-key monophonic analog synthesizer, fully programmable and with its own sound. Though it shares the sleek design, one knob for each function, and high-quality construction with the bestselling Minilogue, the Korg Monologue is a new and truly unique synthesizer for all types of musicians. Offering new sound and innovative sound design features, at an incredible price.

Quality

The Korg Monologue is a next-generation monophonic Analogue Synthesizer in a vivid design. Offering fully programmable analogue synthesis, the monologue is a 25-key synthesizer with a sleek layout, knob-per-function workflow and high-quality construction.

The monologue offers a completely new filter, modulation, drive, and LFO that can generate powerful basses and sharp leads, creating mono sounds that show off its single-voice design. The step sequencer has been expanded, allowing more complex intuitive editing. With 100x program memories, and 80x pre-sets included, the Monologue features a 16-step sequencer with extensive motion sequence technology to make your sound move. A Micro-Tuning feature allows the user to create scales freely and alternate tonalities. The Oscilloscope function assists with visualising the waveform in real time.

With a battery-powered design for enhanced portability, the monologue comes in a rugged and stylish housing with an aluminium top panel, chassis-mounted pots, rubber-coated knobs, and real wood back panel. Connectivity encompasses MIDI, USB MIDI, and Audio Sync for a range of in-studio and live connectivity.

Additional Features:

● Single-voice monophonic analogue synthesiser

● Subtractive synthesis architecture

● Two-octave ‘slim’ keyboard with velocity

● Can be powered by batteries as well as DC power

● Multi-function 16-step sequencer

● Easily synced with other devices

Warranty

Warranty coverage is provided by the Korg distributor in the country which the product was purchased. 

If you register your Korg keyboard, keyboard rack module or digital piano online within 90 days of purchase, Korg will extend your Korg manufacturer’s warranty for an extra year for free if purchased from a Korg authorized dealer. A copy of the registration confirmation email and a legible copy of the product’s sales receipt from the authorized dealer are both required for extended warranty service. To register your Korg product, please click http://i.korg.com/Register

Who Is Korg Monologue Best For?

Beginners to synth music will struggle to find a better overall deal than the Monologue. The simple, intuitive, and hands-on synth will give those with little experience a great insight into how analog synthesis works. It’s a great starting point to understand the ins and outs of this style of music. The old saying “walk before you can run” can be used here when it comes to the simple yet powerful Monologue.

What Do People Say About Korg Monologue?

To get a better idea of how the synthesizer sounds and looks like, we have provided you with a couple of Youtube videos, where you can get a quick synthesizer and sound review.

YouTube Review #1 – This is a quick video of the Korg Monologue performance

Youtube Review #2 – This is an interesting and short introductory video into the Monologue.  By watching this video you will be able to understand better how the Korg Monologue works.

The Verdict: Is Korg Monologue Worth It?

The Korg Monologue is a great choice for a beginner. The quality is good for the price and for it is. The Korg Monologue is a powerful synthesizer with a surprising amount of flexibility given its limited envelope section.

If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com

Korg Minilogue

This article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Korg Minilogue review. If you are interested in buying the Korg Minilogue or you just want to know more about the keyboard, you should keep on reading.

Product Description

Minilogue’s newly developed analogue synthesizer circuit delivers polyphony and full programmability at a great price – exactly what today’s musician needs. With the minilogue, you can get your hands on the powerful sound that’s only possible with real analogue, and find inspiration with features including a polyphonic step and motion sequencer, on board tape-style delay, multiple sound shaping and filter options, and an oscilloscope display. All of these seamlessly integrated features make minilogue as fun and easy to use as it is powerful. It’s the next-generation analogue synthesizer for musicians of all types. (1)

Price

The Korg Minilogue is a well-made and affordable synthesizer. The prices can vary depending on the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 400 and 500 euros.

Pros

  • It can sound excellent.
  • The Voice Modes add a lot to its flexibility and usefulness.
  • It’s stylish, light and manageable.
  • The controls feel firm and responsive – not at all lightweight.
  • It’s attractively priced.

Cons

  • Its non–standard MIDI CC map means that you can’t easily use it with other devices.
  • You may not wish to use its ‘slim’ keyboard.
  • It suffers from some voicing limitations.
  • It lacks MIDI Overflow.

Is Korg Minilogue Worth it?

Korg Minilogue is a stylish, innovative, 37 slim-key fully programmable analogue polyphonic synthesizer. Minilogue’s analogue synthesizer circuit delivers polyphony and full programmability at a great price – exactly what today’s musician needs. With Minilogue you can get, etc it’s your hands on the powerful sound that’s only possible with real analogue and finds inspiration with features including a polyphonic step and motion sequence, onboard tape-style delay, multiple sound shaping and filter options and an oscilloscope display. All of these seamlessly integrated features make Minilogue as fun and easy to use as it is powerful. It’s the next-generation analogue synthesizer for musicians of all types. (7)

In-Depth Review of the Korg Minilogue

Benefits:

  • Flexible, powerful four-voice analogue synthesizer
  • Fully programmable with 200 program memories (100 sounds included)
  • Voice modes let you flexibly configure the four voices
  • Automatable 16-step polyphonic note and motion sequencer
  • The oscilloscope function shows the waveform visually
  • Rugged and stylish with the aluminium top panel, chassis-mounted pots, rubber-coated knobs and real wood back panel
  • MIDI, USB MIDI and audio sync for all types of in-studio and live connectivity, including direct sync with SQ1, Volca, Electribe and more

Quality

The Korg Minilogue is built nicely. It feels extremely heavy duty and looks great. The knobs are tight and accurate, and the keys are solid. The physical build is great. There isn’t a single thing I’d change with the physical quality.

As for the sound, it makes great pads and leads. Bass is doable, but there are many other synths on the market which beat it. It’s a solid polyphonic synth overall in terms of build and sound. The price is amazing for a truly analogue, polyphonic synth.

Additional Features:

The Four-voice polyphonic analogue synthesiser

Full subtractive synthesis architecture

Mono, Duo and Poly voice modes

Arpeggiator and Polyphonic Sequencer

Sync’able with other analogue devices

Warranty

Warranty coverage is provided by the Korg distributor in the country in which the product was purchased. 

If you register your Korg keyboard, keyboard rack module or digital piano online within 90 days of purchase, Korg will extend your Korg manufacturer’s warranty for an extra year for free if purchased from a Korg authorized dealer. A copy of the registration confirmation email and a legible copy of the product’s sales receipt from the authorized dealer are both required for extended warranty service. To register your Korg product, please click http://i.korg.com/Register

Who Is Korg Minilogue Best For?

If you want a great polyphonic synth to learn on, or a cheap, basic polyphonic synth, the Minilogue is your best bet. The 4 voices are sequenceable by most MIDI sequencers, and the voices work well for many functions. If you’re looking for bass or something to fill in for an e-piano, you’re barking up the wrong tree. It can fill in for bass in a pinch, but there are cheaper, more efficient mono-synths for bass on the market like the Behringer Model D.

What Do People Say About It?

To get a better idea of how the synthesizer sounds and looks like, we have provided you with a couple of Youtube videos, where you can get a quick synthesizer and sound review.

YouTube Review #1 – This is a quick video that will show you how the Korg Minilogue sounds like. Also, where are the different functions and how do they work.

Youtube Review #2 – This video will give you the answer to all of your questions if you are looking to buy a Korg Minilogue. Is this still a good beginner synthesizer? Does it offer something unique in terms of workflow and design? Does it produce a sound that is a unique sound? What are its competitors on the market?

The Verdict: Is Korg Minilogue Worth It?

The Minilogue is much cheaper than many of the four-voice analogue/digital hybrids from elsewhere, and it can sound great. On the other hand, it offers only a miniature keyboard and incorporates an, um… ‘misguided’ MIDI implementation. If these limitations don’t bother you, I suspect that you’re going to like it a lot. If they do, keep your fingers crossed for a ‘pro’ version. (2) If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com

Korg Monologue vs Minilogue

Side by side comparison

MonologueMinilogue

(1)

(2)
Sound Engine Type(s):AnalogAnalog
Number of Keys:2537
Type of Keys:Slim-keys, velocity-sensitiveSlim-key, velocity-sensitive 
Polyphony:Monophonic
Number of Presets:80 factory, 20 user100 factory, 100 user
Oscillators2 x VCO (square, triangle, sawtooth), 1 x LFO2 x VCO (square, triangle, sawtooth), 1 x LFO
Filters1 x 2-pole low pass filter1 x 2- / 4-pole low pass filter
EffectsAnalog Drive distortionAnalog Drive distortion, Delay
Sequencer:16-step16-step polyphonic
Audio Inputs:1 x 1/4″ TRS, 1 x 1/8″ (sync in)1 x 1/4″ TRS (audio in), 1 x 1/8″ (sync in)
Audio Outputs:1 x 1/4″ TRS (audio out), 1 x 1/8″ (sync out)1 x 1/4″ TRS (audio out), 1 x 1/8″ (sync out)
Headphones:1 x 1/4″1 x 1/4″
USB:1 x Type B1 x Type USB B
MIDI I/O:In/OutIn/Out
OtherMicro Tuning, OLED oscilloscope screenMicro Tuning, OLED oscilloscope screen
Power Supply:9V DC power supply / 6 x AA batteries9V DC power supply
Height:2.99″3.35″
Width:13.78″19.69″
Depth:10.87″11.81″
Weight:3.7 lbs.6.17 lbs.

Which Synth Sounds Better?

Both of these synths are loaded with great factory presets, like heavy basses and memorable synth leads, so they both sound great.

If you want the option to play more than one note at a time, the Korg Minilogue is right for you. If you know that you will primarily play bass lines, leads, or riffs, the Monologue might be the better option.

The Monologue also wins out over the Minilogue in the sound department because of its sound design. Aphex Twin designed some of the factory presets. Aphex Twin has been in the electronic music industry for years, so Monologue owners can rest assured that he created sounds that are up to the industry standard and that will appeal to experienced synth-players and to those who are trying to craft their own sound by imitating the masters.

Which Synth Has The Best Features?

The Minilogue is head and shoulders above the Monologue in terms of features. You’ve got the arpeggiator, those eight voice modes, and a fully resonant filter. Plus, the polyphonic versatility is always going to attract a lot of interest. The Mini is fully capable of that classic analogue sound but doesn’t quite reach the aggression of the Mono. It’s slightly lacking in the effects department for a polysynth but it still has enough to keep you entertained.

Which Synth Is The Most User Friendly?

Both synths were created with the user in mind, and musicians can adjust the synths’ parameters with dedicated knobs. As such, the learning curve is not steep for either synth. Beginner synth-players can simply turn the synth on and start creating instantly.

Both the Minilogue and the Monologue are easily connected to other synths. Through the use of an iRig, musicians can even connect their iPad or iPhone to their synth.

Conclusion

The Minilogue is the winner of this battle!!

Although both synths offer far more than can be expected at their price points, the Minilogue offers more sound variety simply because it is polyphonic. Although the Monologue is a great monophonic synth, musicians (especially those who are new to the magical world of synths) might find themselves itching to play more than one note at a time somewhere down the road.

Beginners might not see a lot of difference between the Minilogue and Monologue. They do look similar, however, the Minilogue is the way to go because it allows you to grow and experiment without having to switch between it and another synth. Simply switch between the voice modes to play polyphonically or monophonically depending on what you need to play.

The main difference between the Korg Minilogue and the Korg Monologue is that the Monologue is a monophonic synth. While polyphonic synths like the Minilogue can sound multiple notes at a time, monophonic synths can only play one note at a time.

If You liked our article, check out more from our website AalbergAudio.com

Akai Professional MPK249 review

This article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Akai Professional MPK249. If you are interested in buying the Akai Professional MPK 249 or want to know more about the keyboard, you should keep on reading. If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com.

Product Description:

Experience expanded control of your VST instrument and effect collection with MPK249 and Akai Pro VIP3.0 (Free Download Included a $99.99 Value). VIP3.0 provides you with unparalleled access to your virtual instrument and effect collection, seamlessly integrating the hardware/software experience and grants the unrestricted freedom to create in a user-friendly, intuitive format. The combination of VIP and MPK249 maximizes workflow and ensures a playing experience that feels natural and enhances creativity – the natural, tactile feel of hardware fused with the unrivaled processing capability of virtual Instruments.

Quickly find sounds based on instrument type, timbre, style, or articulation from your entire VST library; sculpt immersive, expressive sounds and textures layering up to 8 separate instruments and patches per VIP instance; load up to 4 different VST effects per instrument channel to sculpt the perfect sound; put power into your performance with Pad

Chord Progressions and user-friendly Key Control processors; and much more. From live performance to studio production, VIP’s user-friendly functionality coupled with a diverse feature set guarantees simple, seamless integration into your existing setup and provides the ultimate platform for unrestricted creative expression.

Price: 

The Akai Professional MPK249 is a well-made and affordable keyboard. The prices can vary depending on the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 250 and 330 euros. We have provided you with some online stores, where you can compare the prices. 

Pros: 

  • Keyboard quality – semi-weighted, touch-sensitive keys with Aftertouch that offer piano-like performance and responsiveness
  • MPC pads are responsive, decently large, and look good with RGB lighting. You can also expand them to 64 sounds with the 4 separate sound banks
  • The knobs and sliders have a meaty resistance and are well-mapped for most DAWs
  • DAW controls and bright LCD screen remove the need to use your computer keyboard and mouse. You can make music entirely from the controller without even looking at your DAW
  • Integration is rock solid with most DAWS. Customization is easy with bundled software. You can also upgrade to MPC 2.0 software for improved workflows
  • Decently compact size and build quality

Cons: 

  •  Aesthetically dull; lacks the retro-finish of Akai’s other pro-quality keyboards such as Max49
  • At nearly 6kg, it’s slightly on the heavier side. You’ll need a dedicated stand to hold it
  • Semi-weighted keys can be difficult to play if you don’t have finger strength; not recommended for beginners
  • Pricey; there are similar 49-key controllers with equivalent features (though none have the semi-weighted keys of the Akai)
  • Pads are slightly small for intuitive finger drumming. A few mm larger would have made a difference (2)

Is Akai Professional MPK249 Worth it?

The MPK249 is well-built, has a fantastic keyboard, and boast all the features you’d need to create the epicenter of your home production system. It is often the default choice of serious music producers, including some of your favorite pro artists.

It’s not cheap, however, and neither is it for everyone. You will not get much value from it if you’re only going to use it for the keyboard. To make full use of its potential, you’ll want to use it as a music production center or taking it live.

Benefits of Akai Professional MPK249:

The MPK249 works well in a live setting or in the studio. It gives you the freedom to skip the computer keyboard + mouse combo, making for a more intuitive production experience. The keys are fantastic and the pads responsive – exactly what you would want in a pro-quality MIDI controller.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions 
    • Width: 737 mm 
    • Height: 311 mm
    • Depth: 89 mm
  • Weight: 5.71 kg
  • 49 Semi-weighted keys
  • 16 MPC pads with RGB lighting
  •  8 Assignable knobs, faders, and buttons (each)
  • Inputs for expression and sustain pedal
  •  Arpeggiator
  • MPC Note Repeat
  • MPC full level
  • Tap Tempo and Time Division
  •  Backlit LCD display
  •  DAW integration through comprehensive transport and parameter control
  • Assignable keyboard shortcut keys
  • 1 x jack input for expression pedal
  • 1 x jack input for sustain pedal
  • USB-MIDI and 5-pin MIDI in/out
  • iOS compatible with Apple Camera Connection Kit (not included)
  • Software included (downloads): Ableton Live Lite, Hybrid 3 by AIR Music Tech, SONiVOX Twist 2.0 and Akai Pro MPC Essentials

Quality of Akai Professional MPK249:

The pads are sensitive which is what most users want, it easily integrates with major DAWs and the MPC features are amazing. The performance quality is outstanding, and many owners of the Akai Midi controller agree.

The keys are velocity sensitive and smooth to the touch, it’s easy to set up, easy to use making it one of the best midi keyboards on the market.

The design is sleek, with the knobs and buttons are smooth to the touch. The color is black/grey and would fit well in any room aesthetic. It is relatively easy to take care of and the colors wrapping around the pads are a nice little touch.

In the end, the AKAI Professional MPK249 is on the pricey side for a reason, first the brand is highly rated and well respected, second, the features and software were a great bonus, and third, the keyboard is built well with the sound quality being one of the best.

Additional Features:

  •  Full-size keys with aftertouch
  • 16 RGB-illuminated MPC pads derived from the MPC Renaissance (each with 4 banks)
  •  24 assignable Q-Link controllers include knobs, faders, and switches (8 of each)
  • New control layout with backlit LCD screen
  • USB-MIDI with 5-pin MIDI input and output
  •  Comprehensive transport and parameter controls for hands-on DAW integration
  • MPC Note Repeat, MPC Swing, and arpeggiator for advanced rhythmic and melodic manipulation
  •  MPC Full Level, 16 Levels, Tap Tempo, and Time Division assist with dynamics and tempo
  • Pitch bend, modulation, and octave controls for expressive recording and performing
  •  One sustain/footswitch jack, one expression pedal jack
  • USB bus power for plug-and-play connectivity
  •  iOS compatibility via Apple iPad Camera Connection Kit (sold separately)
  •  Production software package included: Ableton Live Lite and Pro MPC Essentials
  • Virtual synths included: Hybrid 3 by AIR Music Tech and SONiVOX Twist 2.0
  • Includes Akai Professional VIP3 virtual instrument workstation software/plug-in

Warranty:

Thomannmusic.com offers a warranty for the Akai Professional MPK249 for the duration of three years.

Who Is Akai Professional MPK249 Best For?

As a serious (and seriously priced) instrument, the Akai MPK249 isn’t for everyone. It is “too much keyboard” for beginners. Even intermediate players who are used to a keyboard + mouse workflow won’t be able to make full use of its features. People without any piano playing experience might also find the MPK249’s keyboard to be a bit hard to use.

Overall, the Akai MPK249 is best if you:

  • Want a pro-grade MIDI controller that will last for years
  • Want a more intuitive workflow that does not depend on computer keyboard and
  • mouse
  • Are at an intermediate or higher level to take advantage of all the features
  • Plan to perform in a live setting.

I DO NOT recommend this for beginners. This should not be your first MIDI controller. You’ll find far better beginner-friendly choices in our roundup of the best 49-key, 61-key, and 88key MIDI controllers.

What Do People Say About Akai Professional MPK249?

You can find some feedback and keyboard reviews on Amazon and Thomann. A lot of people prefer buying their keyboards online due to the better prices rather than in stores. Overall the Akai Professional MPK249 has been rated on average 4.6 out of 5 stars on Amazon Review. 

Amazon Review #1“I’ll keep this short. By far my favourite USB / MIDI keyboard I’ve used. I had tried the cheaper 25 key Akai, but it was just too small and the synth key action I didn’t like.

By contrast, this thing is a full sized keyboard. For most electronic music production, you might try a riff or something on the keyboard, test out chords etc., but you’re unlikely to be playing Mozart. Point being, I’d rather a very useful 25 key to a less useful full size 88. 25 is also about as big as fits decently on a desk, especially with a mixer and more.

The drum pads are super responsive and sensitive, and 4×8 banks gives you 32 options, though I doubt many use them much – I’d get an MPC or something if I wanted just the pads. They are there and work very well though. Note repeat is like an arm for the pads as well.

Regular arp mode is nice too and well implemented, you can get some cool sounds going by playing with latch and letting the arp bounce around notes. You will almost always edit them in a DAW, but it’s a starting point for some cool stuff.

The keys feel great, play great, etc., far from the synth action of the cheaper models.

Tons of onboard DAW pre-sets plus Ableton Live Lite included is good, too. No support for mixcraft which I use, but no surprise there.. anything common is covered though, and you can make your own presets as well. I do wish there was more variability in the presets – swappable banks like the pads would be nice, since for example if you’re using a VST like serum, there’s a lot of places you can map the knobs – plus if you mod one, changing the mod % is a different knob. Of course, there’s really not much room, and if I care that much there are MIDI controllers with more options, I even have a 49-key that at least has sliders and 12 knobs, but I still rarely use it, this is so much more preferable.

(And yes I keep note stickers on some keys, never officially learned to play so those are helpful at times).

By far my favourite MIDI equipment, would buy again for sure. Also just confirms my love for Akai, I think more Akai products are in my future.”

Amazon Review #2 – “When I was looking to purchase a midi controller (keep in mind this is my first midi keyboard) a few months back I was stuck between the Akai mpk249, Akai advance, the novation impulse and the m audio control 49. I eventually opted for the Akai mpk49 I’m very glad I did although there are mixed reviews on this controller for my purposes its very good.

Key points:

semi weighted keys feel nice, good resistance enjoyable to play (i previously used a Casio wk7600 which had touch sensitive keys, a dramatic step up) very responsive drum pads: they have levels of adjustability, but the factory pre-set feels great if anything its slightly too sensitive. can play drum rolls easily, pads can be played with two fingers at a time for fast beats. great software compatibility: I use Ableton live 9 and it just worked straight away with the auto key mapping feature.

Very easy to remap as well. Has nice live looping features built in so you can record jams live, layering and building in real time, so you do not loose flow and traction from stopping and starting editing patterns. I use this in conjunction with a focus rite Scarlett sound card, Ableton live nine.

Works a charm. between the mpk49 and the advance I would say if you need a bank of sound fx and samples then maybe opt for the advance, but with downloads these days that part of the package seemed pointless. Also, the pads are in a bad layout on the advance as they are spread in a line it will be less intuitive to play drums. the square pad layout on the mpk49 is far better Akai have mapped the toms together, the symbols and fx in a way that it is almost like playing an instrument, very well designed.

Highly recommend this controller in the entry to mid-range categories”

Thomann Review #1“Excellent quality Keyboard for Home and Pro studios.

I use it with Logic X and have no issues with that.

Keys are weighted and solid, very good feel for playing. Drum pads are excellent sensitivity, coloured, just perfect to make beats. Knobs and faders are not cheap made, feels perfect and enough to control synths, plugins etc.

As for me it has everything to control your DAW.

You do not need to spend much money for buying extra controllers. MPK249 does everything. Just study your DAW and make good stuff.

Excellent price, worth of single cent.”

To get a better idea of how the controller sounds and looks like, we have provided you with a couple of Youtube videos, where you can get a quick controller and sound review.

Youtube Review #1 – Review and demonstration of the Akai MPK249 Midi Controller Keyboard. The video provides information about the keys, pad sensitivity, build quality, features and whether it was worth it.

Youtube Review #2 – This video provides a demo of how to use the Akai MPK249, and covers why it is a good choice to use with a variety of digital audio workstations. After that, we cover how to create and edit presets on the Akai MPK249, so you can set it up to work with different plugins, or digital audio workstations.

The Verdict: Is the Akai Professional MPK249 Worth It?

The Akai MPK249 is a well-built, well-designed keyboard that is surprisingly portable for its size. It has good heft and sturdiness. All controls feel robust and richly crafted, especially the MPC-borrowed pads, semi-weighted keyboard, and sliders. The improved LCD screen is brighter, and the pitch/mod wheels have a satisfying rubbery feel to them.

Overall, the MPK249 is a well-rounded instrument as far as design and build-quality goes. It won’t blow you away with its looks, but it won’t give you much room to complain either. The slightly smaller size also makes it a better choice for lugging around to live gigs. If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com.

Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2 Review

This article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2. If you are interested in buying the Akai Professional MPK Mini or you just want to know more about the keyboard, you should keep on reading. If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com

Product Description:

The ultra-portable MKP Mini Play is based on the world’s most popular midi controller – Akai Professional’s MPK Mini – but now it comes packed with 128 sounds and its own built-in speaker. With 8 backlit MPC drum pads and a 4-way joystick for simple control, players have all they need to play their music anywhere. Four knobs (two banks capable of controlling eight different parameters) can be used to tweak sounds and edit multiple parameters in real-time, giving musicians even more performance possibilities. The Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2 owered by 3 “AA” batteries, the MPK Mini Play is built for hours of wireless fun.

Price: 

The Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2 is a well-made and affordable keyboard. The prices can vary depending on the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 80 and 100 euros.

Pros: 

  • Works a standalone keyboard for practices
  • Comes with a built-in speaker 
  • Ultra sensitive and responsive pads
  • Portability, including low weight and small dimensions. The controller fits easily in a laptop bag
  • Improved keyboard from the older MK1 interaction
  • Pad quality is best-in-class in this price range 
  • Bundled software, especially VIP 3.0 and MPC Essentials 
  • Best-in-class build quality and 4-way joystick 
  • Unbeatable value for money

Cons: 

  • Not the best-designed keyboards around 
  • The Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2 might need a little more time to get used to mastering all its functions
  • Keys lack aftertouch and have limited velocity sensitivity
  • Pads aren’t as responsive as Akai’s dedicated pad controllers
  • Only 8 pads limit usability. Forget building complex drum kits
  • Knobs feel lightweight and don’t have a satisfying click
  • No pattern editor in arpeggiator; not useful in performance

Is Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2 Worth it?

If you are looking for an affordable, entry-level MIDI controller, that you can use anywhere, then this is the controller for you.  You can use the controller for entering simple melodies and chords, so you won’t be able to perform difficult and complex sounds. Forget about complicated drum kits, the controller has a simple drum pad that won’t be able to deliver complicated drum beats.   

There is nothing about this keyboard that will blow your mind as far as performance goes. But there is also nothing that will disappoint you. The keyboard, which was a peak point, has improved drastically. And the pads are as good as traditional Akai.

The joystick controller is a welcome change to the MK2, and the plug-and-play integration makes it easy to use for most people. There is a bunch of bundled software, but apart from MPC Essentials, you’re unlikely to get much use out of them. 

On the whole, a perfectly good controller that does everything well enough to satisfy most users.

In-Depth Review of the above articles

Benefits:

Good design, good performance and all the features you’d need. The Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2 is a perfect keyboard for travelling. It does all the things a performer wants but at an affordable price. 

Specifications:

  • Keys

25 velocity-sensitive

  • Pads

8 pressure and velocity-sensitive

MPS-style Light-up Pads x 2 Banks 

  • Knobs

4 assignable controller pots

1 x 360 Encoder for Display Navigation

1 Volume control

  • Computer Interface 

USB-Midi communications to Mac/PC

  • Octaves

10 with Octaves Up and Down 

  • Arpeggiator

Yes

  • Additional Controls

Pitchbend/Mod Joystick

Note Repeat Button

Full Level Button 

Tap Tempo Button

  • Additional Input

1 ¼” (6.35 mm) TS input for sustain pedal

  • Output

1 ⅛” (3.5 mm) headphone output 

Built-in speaker 

  • Power

USB bus-powered

3 x AA batteries 

  • Dimensions

Width 12.5”  (31.8 cm)

Depth 7.13”  (18.1 cm)

Height 1.75”  (4.4 cm)

Weight 1.6 lbs  (0.75 kg)

Quality:

Overall design: The Akai MPK Mini, as the name suggests, is compact and portable. The Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2 is completed by two rows of pads, eight knobs, and a joystick controller. The design is focused on functionality over flamboyance. It looks good without focusing only on looking good.

Portability: The Akai MPK Mini is 12.5” long and just 7.3” wide. To place this in context, a standard 15.6” laptop is around 15” long and 10” wide. In other words, the MPK Mini is smaller than most laptops and can easily fit into any standard backpack. It also weighs just 1.65lbs – about the same as an iPad Pro.

Build quality: As noted earlier in this Akai MPK Mini MK2 review, this keyboard’s build quality is a marked improvement from the MK1. The keys feel more robust and well put together. You can push the thing around without worrying about the controller falling apart. The pads, while not as good as Akai’s drum pads, work well enough. The knobs don’t have a satisfying click but feel good to touch. 

Aesthetics: The MK2 feels positively chunky and has a definite “retro” feel. The soft rounded edges and thick ‘Akai’ font makes it look like something from the ‘80s. The standard black looks nice, but you can also get it in white and a stunning limited edition red. 

Conclusion: To round up the build-quality section of this Akai MPK Mini MK2 review, I would say that it’s a decent looking controller with a focus on portability. It is smaller than most laptops and will fit into your backpack easily. Although it looks “chunky”, the controller is lightweight at just 1.65lbs. 

The quality is good. It’s not as robust as a Roland but for its price, this is one of the better-built MIDI controllers you can buy.

Additional Features:

  • Standalone mini keyboard with built-in speaker and USB MIDI controller
  • Built-in sound module with over 128 instrument sounds + 10 drum kits
  • 25 synth-action mini keys
  • OLED display for easy sound browsing
  • 8 red backlit drum pads (2 banks, 16 total)
  • 4 knobs edit sounds or send midi (2 banks, 8 total)
  • Built-in arpeggiator 
  • ⅛” headphone jack
  • Battery-powered using (3) AA batteries

Warranty:

All Products: inMusic Brands, Inc. (“inMusic”) warrants to the original purchaser that Akai Professional (“Akai Pro”) products and all other accessories are free from defects in material and workmanship under normal use and service for the period commencing upon the date of purchase from an authorized Akai Pro dealer and continuing for the following period after that date for one (1) year.

Who Is Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2 Best For?

As an entry-level instrument, the Akai MPK Mini MK2 is best used in studio settings, or to make music on the move. Don’t think of dragging the Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2 to a live performance – neither the keyboard nor the pads are designed for the pressures of performance (both the keys and pads are too few for live shows anyway).

What Do People Say About Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2?

You can find some feedback and keyboard reviews on Amazon, eBay and Thomann. A lot of people prefer buying their keyboards online due to the better prices rather than in stores. Overall the Akai MPK Mini MK2 has been rated on average 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon Review. 

Amazon Review #1 – “4/5. I have been having a lot of fun and diving into my software more than ever now that I have this awesome controller. But in this review, I will start by focusing on the negatives.

The disappointment I have with this keyboard is its playing action. The works fine as a tool, but the keys are strange to someone who is used to a traditional electric keyboard. When I play my Yamaha keyboard, there is a “hump” in the spring mechanism, where the note is triggered and the key loses resistance. This gives you a tactile feel and allows you to press keys repeatedly without thinking about if you lifted the key high enough.

On the Akai, I was surprised to find that notes are triggered about halfway down the stroke, but it is just one kind of resistance. This feels a little squishy, and it may result in missed notes if you are not used to it, and it replaces some of the tactile feels with one that requires more thought. This type of key makes it feel more like a tool than an instrument.

The other aspect that disappointed me (until I fixed it) is the low sensitivity of the pads. The threshold for triggering them is quite high, so you can’t play by lightly tapping them, or it will miss many hits. This means it’s not worth it to vary the power of your hits because you risk not triggering notes. Fixing this is possible by putting 3 layers of electrical tape under the pads. Youtube videos show how to do this on the original Akai Mini. The Mark II is more difficult to take apart, but it is entirely possible to do this mod with just a screwdriver and tape.

When I tore the keyboard apart (4 separate times) I learned that it is very well made and simple in construction. All of the screws are the same size, none of the holes they go into is easily stripped, and it goes together tightly and solidly. There is internal support under the drum pads. So that is impressive.

SOFTWARE: I see many comments in these reviews talking about the painful registration process. If you have any recent MIDI sequencing software, you will not need to do any registration, and you don’t need to register to use the Akai Editor application for programming the buttons. Apparently, by registering, you get some software to generate sounds, but I think it would be far easier just to download a trial version of FL Studio.

Overall, this device has helped me dive into these programs. I would recommend it, with the caveat that you should do the drum pad mod to get the best playability from it.”

Amazon Review #2“This is a fantastic little midi-controller. I use it with my Mac Mini (OS X 10.8.5) running Logic X (it will also work with GarageBand and most other DAW’s) and it works very well. It also works well with my M-Audio sustain pedal, it has a port for a sustain pedal in the back (in case you were wondering.)

The packaging was fantastic. Included is the Keyboard, USB-Midi cable, instructions, and information on where and how to download your included software.

The keyboard itself looks great. The piano is very streamlined is very streamline and has a great color scheme. A unique feature is a 4-way joystick for modulation and pitch control. I have to say I like it better than a typical wheel style control you see on other midi-controllers. It helps keep the size of the keyboard down since you don’t have to include that bulkier pitch and modulation wheels. It helps make this a portable keyboard. Though someone who is used to the wheel style control might not like this feature. It takes a minute to get acclimated to.

Right now my only complaint is that the keys are a little smaller than I was expecting. As you can see in my pictures, each key is about the size of a penny. The keys are completely usable but a little hard to get used to if you are used to a full-size keyboard. This may or may not matter to you. If you have big fingers, I may recommend looking for something else. Of course, this is not the manufacturer’s fault, they list “mini keys” in the first description of the product so I am not going to knock any stars for that.

I just thought they wouldn’t be quite so mini. But the upside is that it makes the overall footprint very small, smaller than my computer keyboard. Also, unless you have nothing else, this isn’t the type of keyboard you (or at least I) would use to put down a lot of notes. I think it’s more for editing and mixing than for creating and composing, but if you needed to you easily could.

I think would be neat if they made this same controller with normal-sized keys. They make one similar (Akai Professional MPK25 25-Key USB MIDI Keyboard Controller with MPC Pads) but it has a lot more going on and is $80 more. Maybe I will invest in that someday. If you have larger fingers or don’t like the mini-keys go check that one out.

Anyway, in summary, fantastic little midi keyboard. Good price, great packaging, and great usability. I think this is a good keyboard to start with as a beginner and even a good keyboard to have floating around if you are a pro. Pick up the piano, I don’t think you will be disappointed.”

Thomann Review #1“I bought this just to play around with at home. The piano is really fun and it’s great that it can be used standalone. I’ve run it through my loop pedal with my guitar and you can make some great backing tracks with it. Being able to run it on batteries is another great feature however the built-in speaker is a bit lacking but that doesn’t bother me as I’m either using it with headphones or through an amp. I would recommend it.”

Youtube Review #1 – This video will provide you with a quick tutorial on how to use your Akai Professional MPK Mini MK2. It also focuses on the actual hardware aspects of the keyboard like using the arpeggiator, pads and how to use those keys. 

Youtube Review #2 – In this video, you can see how to use the controlling fl studio. It also provides you with a quick presentation of making a cool beat with no effort. 

Youtube Review #3 – A quick presentation of what the Akia MPK Mini MK2 is capable of by creating an Electro House beat. 

The Verdict: Is it Worth It?

The ideal keyboard for beginners who are starting out. Also works great as a secondary portable keyboard for serious performers. If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com

Best cheap digital piano(s)

Introduction

If you are planning to buy a digital piano or you are interested in learning how to play the piano, you do not need to spend a fortune in getting the most expensive piano in the market. There are numerous affordable digital pianos that you can use to improve your skills. So, what are the best choices on the market for you right now?

Yamaha P71

Price

The Yamaha P71 is a well-made and affordable synthesizer. The prices can vary depending on the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 500 and 800 euros. We have provided you with some online stores, where you can compare the prices.

Amazon 

Product Description

Yamaha P71 is an Amazon-exclusive model and it is also the most affordable variant in the company’s “P” lineup. There are two other popular variants in the same lineup-namely the P45 and P115. The latter is quite expensive though and comes with many features. It would not be wrong to say the wallet-friendly model offers some of the useful features you get in its costlier siblings. 

Pros: 

  • Compact design and lightweight
  • Easy to use
  • Natural grand piano sound
  • Ideal for beginners.
  • Good Connectivity options.
  • Fully weighted keys.
  • Affordable price.

Cons

  • No Recording features
  • There is no LED display
  • Flimsy sustain footswitch

Is it Worth it?

So is the P-71 worth the money? I’d say it is.

For its fairly affordable price, you get a very decent digital piano with realistic piano sound and a full-size hammer-action keyboard, which mimics that of an acoustic piano.

In-Depth Review

Benefits:

Yamaha P71 has an ergonomically made keyboard with fully-weighted 88 keys. They feel quite smooth to touch. The response is amazingly realistic and here it outshines most segment rivals by a fair margin. Being fully weighted, these keys tend to be heavier and have a proper resistance when you play the piano with the GHS action, the piano uses little hammers inside the keyboard. 

Apart from that, there are 4 different settings for the key sensitivity. The fixed setting allows the player to produce sounds of the same quality without paying attention to the strike, whether it is a hard one or a soft one. The medium setting, on the other hand, is the only default setting that provides the players with the acoustic piano feel. 

The hard settings and the soft settings are meant for the harder sensitivity and the softer sensitivity of the keys.

Also, the piano has simple controls that even a beginner will understand without any fuss. A digital piano should have the required connectivity options so that users can connect it with other accessories and instruments. 

Specifications:

  • 88-key fully weighted keyboard with matte black keytops
  • Graded Hammer Standard action
  • Touch Sensitivity (Hard, Medium, Soft, Fixed)
  • Sound: AWM Stereo sampling
  • 64-note polyphony
  • 10 instrument sounds (2 pianos)
  • 10 preset piano songs + 10 demo songs
  • Modes: Duo, Dual
  • Metronome, Transpose, Fine-tuning
  • Speakers: 6W + 6W (12cm x 2)
  • Connections: USB to Host, Headphone jack, Sustain Pedal jack
  • 1,326 x 295 x 154 mm (52.2” x 11.6” x 6.0”)
  • 11.5 kg (25 lbs. 6 oz.)

Quality

Despite its entry-level price tag, it does not look flimsy. The build quality is pretty good and the compact form factor adds to ease of usage. The design is minimalistic and oozes a kind of understated elegance too. It weighs just 25 pounds. Yamaha P71 is a very portable digital piano. It has very lightweight which makes it pretty easy to move around. This makes it the best option for use at home.

Additional Features:

  • Portable size
  • Advanced sound sampling
  • 88 keys
  • Matte finish
  • Many voices
  • Polyphony of 64
  • Fine-tuning
  • Dual-mode
  • Automatic shut-off
  • USB
  • “Duo” function

Warranty

Yamaha has a 3-year warranty on Digital Pianos! Warranty services will only be provided for defective products within the Warranted Area. Yamaha will, at its option, repair or replace the product covered by this warranty if it becomes defective, malfunctions or otherwise fails to conform with this warranty under normal use and service during the term of this warranty, without charge for labour or materials.

Who Is It Best For?

The Yamaha P71 comes across as an ideal digital piano for beginners and those who want to use such a device casually or for learning at his/her own pace. It has many things to recommend for beginners.

You will find its compact yet durable build enticing and the same can be said about its weighted keyboard that offers an amazingly good experience.

What Do People Say About It?

YouTube Review #1 

Youtube Review #2 

The Verdict: Is it Worth It?

The P71 is a great option to consider for a college student living in a dorm room who needs a compact piano alternative at an affordable price.

Unfortunately, the piano lacks features such as a MIDI recorder, Lesson Mode and Accompaniment function, which would be nice to have, but the pros far outweigh the cons. But you’re a beginner on a budget and looking for a simple, no-frills digital piano with fully weighted keys, realistic piano sound, the P71 is a great keyboard to consider.

Alesis Recital Piano

Price

The Alesis Recital Piano is a well-made and affordable synthesizer. The prices can vary depending on the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 140 and 320 euros. We have provided you with some online stores, where you can compare the prices.

Amazon – 146.32 euros

Sweetwater – 311.55 euros

KeyBoardPiano UK – 207.16 euros

Product Description

The Alesis Recital is a full-featured digital piano with 88 full-sized semi-weighted keys with adjustable touch response. The Recital features 5 realistic built-in voices: Acoustic Piano, Electric Piano, Organ, Synth, and Bass. Customize the voices by combining any two at once in Layer Mode for a full, rich tone.

They can also be assigned to only the left or right hands in Split Mode. You can even add adjustable Reverb and Chorus to further tailor your sound. With powerful 20-watt built-in speakers and a 128-note maximum note polyphony, Recital delivers ultra-realistic sound with a great playing experience.

Pros:  

  • Very affordable
  • Full-sized 88-key keyboard 
  • Decent sounds and speakers
  • 128-note polyphony
  • Can run on batteries

Cons:

  • Keys aren’t that good despite being semi-weighted
  • Questionable build quality
  • Very limited sound selection

Is it Worth it?

At first glance, the Alesis Recital seems like a no brainer. No other option at this price point gives you 88-keys and good sounds. When you add semi-weighted keys to the mix, it seems like the best option. However, the keys are the weakest part of the Recital. This makes it an instrument I can’t recommend in good conscience.

In-Depth Review of the above articles

Benefits:

The Alesis Recital has an incredibly useful feature called “Lesson Mode.” This feature divides the 88 keys into two zones with the same pitch and voice. This enables both the student and teacher to easily watch each other and play together without having to take turns or reach over one another. Recital also features a ¼” (6.35mm) headphone output which mutes the internal speakers for convenient, quiet private practice.

Specifications:

  • Minimum System Requierments
  • Windows: 7 (32 and 64 bit)
  • OS X: 10.10
  • USB 2.0 port (or higher)

Quality

Alesis Recital digital piano comes so simple, compact, sleek, and beautiful. Its masterful shape and simple style confer on it a touch of excellence, while its slim body and wonderful surface finishing (matte finish of the black keys and glossy finish of the white keys) give it a premium look that will be appreciated in any space.

It comes in two colours: black and white. It features the control buttons and knob at the top centre while its speakers flaunt the extreme ends from the top. The Alesis Recital comes in a very simple style. Since it was made with the piano beginners in mind, Alesis did not pack it with excessive functionalities and the function navigation is also very simple and easy.  

Additional Features:

  • 88 premium full-sized hammeraction keys with adjustable touch response
  • 12 built-in premium voices with the ability to split or layer 2 voices simultaneously
  • 20-warr speakers and 128-note max polyphony for realistic sound and playability
  • Lesson mode divides the keyboard into two zones with the same pitch and voices
  • Built-in metronome can be easily adjusted from 30-280 beats per minute
  • Easily adjustable Modulation, Chorus, and Reverb FX; Pedal Resonance feature
  • Stereo ¼” (6.35mm) outputs for connecting to a mixer, amp, or other sound system
  • ¼” (6.35mm) headphone output mutes the internal speakers for private practice
  • USB-MIDI output for use with educational software or virtual instrument plugins
  • USB-MIDI output for use with educational software or virtual instrument plugins
  • Sustain input to connect standard ¼” (6.35mm) sustain pedal (not included)
  • Includes a power adapter or power with 6 D-cell Batteries (not included)

Warranty

Warranty and its duration will most likely be dependant on the seller. 

Who Is It Best For?

The Alesis Recital Digital Piano was made with beginners in mind – Alesis did not pack it with excessive functionalities and the function navigation is also very simple and easy. Although intermediate players and enthusiasts will find it handy as well you will not get that true acoustic feel from this piano, but the feel of this has just been made right for the comfort of piano beginners.

What Do People Say About It?

YouTube Review #1 

Youtube Review #2 

The Verdict: Is it Worth It?

The Alesis Recital is a wonderful digital piano that is excellent for beginners because it does not have overwhelming features and super complicated settings. The included modes help students to learn and practice.

The options help with the sound quality, however, the Recital is simply not the best digital piano for more advanced students because of the sound quality.

If you are looking for a digital piano which will get you started on learning and you can also practice on with your teacher, the Alesis Recital can be a great option to consider. You can also check out this great guide on the best digital pianos to buy on the market in 2021.

Yamaha P125

Price

The Yamaha P125 is a well-made and affordable synthesizer. The prices can vary depending on the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 500 and 800 euros. We have provided you with some online stores, where you can compare the prices.

Guitarcenter.com – 649.99 dollar = 534 euros

Kraftmusic.com –  649.99 dollar = 534 euros

Vivacemusic.com – 955 dollar = 785 euros

Product Description

The Yamaha P-125 is a compact digital piano that combines incredible piano performance with a user-friendly minimalistic design. Easily portable and extremely accessible, the P-125 is always ready to perform whenever–or wherever–you are. The P-125 is loaded with features to give you an acoustic piano playing experience in a portable package.

It produces the dynamic, high-quality sound and natural piano touch response you’ve come to expect from Yamaha digital pianos while maintaining a sleek and slim footprint. The P-125 was designed with simplicity of use in mind. The intuitive user interface makes using functions like Dual Voice or Split Keyboard a breeze. Every element of the P-125 is designed to help you stay focused on what really matters: your performance.

Pros

  • An Improved, New, And Sleek Design
  • 4 Speaker System
  • High-Quality, Realistic, And Immersive Tones And Sounds
  • 192-Note Polyphony
  • 4-Layer CF Sampling
  • USB Audio Interface
  • Compatible With Smart Pianist App

Cons

  • No Bluetooth Connection Available
  • Basic Sustain Footswitch
  • Not Much Addition To Sound Effects Or Settings
  • Not The Most Realistic Key Action

Is it Worth it?

Ultimately, you get what you pay for with this model. If you’re upgrading from a cheap, low end weighted keyboard, you’ll be delighted at the experience that this piano offers you. Maybe you have a similar gig instrument, such as the P105 or P115, then it’s probably not worth the upgrade. If you’re a concert artist looking for a portable practice instrument, this will be adequate. There are more expensive models on the market, and you have to realise that this is a compromise.

In-Depth Review of the above articles

Benefits:

The Yamaha P125 features three modes that you can enable to change the way the keyboard functions:

Dual Mode

Dual Mode essentially splits the keyboard down the middle and replicates the same notes on either side of the split point. Think of it like one big piano being split into two smaller ones. The advantage of this is that if you’re a teacher, you now have two pianos instead of one. Pretty useful!

Layer Mode

Layer Mode allows you to select two different sounds. When you play, instead of hearing just one, you’ll hear both. For example, you could select piano and strings, piano and voice, organ and strings, etc.

Split Mode

Split Mode splits the keyboard between two sounds. This allows you to play one voice in your left hand and one voice in your right hand. For example, you might want an organ in the left hand and a choir in the right hand. The P-125 allows you to do that.

Specifications:

  • Release Date 2018
  • Colour variations Black, White
  • Weight 26 lbs/ 11.8 kg
  • Dimensions 1326 x 295 x 166 mm 
  • Keyboard 88 key weighted (Graded Hammer Standart) with touch sensitivity
  • Polyphony 192
  • Voices 24
  • Rhythms 20
  • Demo songs 12 songs + 50 piano songs 
  • User songs 1
  • Effects Reverb (4), Sound Boost, table EQ, IAC, Stereophonic Optimizer
  • Dual-mode Yes
  • Split mode Yes
  • Other features Transpose, Fine tuning, Metronome
  • Pedal included 1 sustain pedal
  • Built-in speakers Yes (2×7 W)
  • Connections:
    • USB-to-Host
    • Sustain pedal input (1/4”)
    • Headphone output (2×1/4”)
    • Aux out (2×1/4”)
    • Pedal unit connector
    • Power adapter input

Quality

As expected, the Yamaha P125 is an extremely compact and lightweight instrument. It builds on its predecessor to provide a slightly more streamlined and minimalist experience without sacrificing features.

As expected at this price point, Yamaha has chosen to make this piano out of plastic. Most portable digital pianos are the same. However, it is extremely durable, and providing it’s not abused, should last for many years.

The design of the keyboard alludes to the fact that the P125 is a hybrid; a cross between a digital piano and a stage piano, or keyboard. It combines a serious, functional digital piano design, with the usefulness of a portable keyboard.

Additional Features:

  • 88 Key Graded Hammer Standard keyboard with matte black keytop finish
  • Hard/Medium/Soft/Fixed touch sensitivity
  • Yamaha Pure CF Sound Engine, with Damper Resonance and Intelligent Acoustic Control
  • 192 Note Polyphony
  • 24 Instrument Sounds, including 4 piano sounds
  • 50 preset piano pieces, including a further 21 demo pieces; one for each individual voice
  • Four types of reverb
  • Transposition function, from -6 semitones to +6
  • Compact sizing: 52 inch x 6.5 inch x 11 inch
  • Lightweight: 11.8kg
  • Functions; dual/layers, split and duo
  • 2-track recording
  • 2x stereo headphone input (6.25in jack)
  • Connections: DC In 12V, Sustain Pedal, Pedal unit (included,) AUX OUT and USB TO HOST
  • Metronome, from 5bpm to 280bpm

Warranty

Yamaha has a 3-year warranty on Digital Pianos! Warranty services will only be provided for defective products within the Warranted Area. Yamaha will, at its option, repair or replace the product covered by this warranty if it becomes defective, malfunctions or otherwise fails to conform with this warranty under normal use and service during the term of this warranty, without charge for labour or materials.

Who Is It Best For?

You are a beginner. 

If you want to learn a few piano lessons or you’re looking for one to gift to your niece or nephew, then the Yamaha P-125 is the perfect digital piano to start with. It has all the basic necessities that are found in an acoustic piano with perks that can only be achieved from being a digital one.

You are a gigging musician. 

If you’re just starting out in the music industry and you’re looking for a budget-friendly digital piano, then the Yamaha P-125 is a solid choice. It has everything a budding musician has and more. It’s easily transported so you can bring it with you no matter where your gig is.

You’re a pianist looking for piano practice. 

While a digital piano may never be the same as the real acoustic piano one, it’s highly unlikely that a pianist would be willing to haul a full acoustic piano wherever he or she goes. The Yamaha P125’s abilities to be compact and lightweight allows it to be the perfect practice instrument for even the most experienced pianists.

However, if you’re looking for a digital piano that has many instrument voices and where you can record your own songs with no registry limits – the Yamaha P-125 may not be the best option out of the box.

Overall, the Yamaha P125 is a good choice for a mid-range portable digital piano. It has a great minimalistic design, and with its compact design, it brings an unhindered sound that is natural and immersive.

What Do People Say About It?

YouTube Review #1 

Youtube Review #2 

The Verdict: Is it Worth It?

Whether the P-125 is worth $499, or if you should just try and find the P-115 or even the P-45 at a reduced price is a matter of personal choice.  And a lot of these choices depend on how much sound, recording features, and ability to use the Yamaha Smart Pianist App matter to you.

While some piano upgrades can be a bit minimal and not worthy of your consideration, I actually think the ability to incorporate your iPhone or iPad into your piano playing sessions (and done in a very straight-forward and intuitive way), along with the addition of richer sound compared to its predecessors, makes the Yamaha P-125 an impressive and worthwhile digital piano for beginners and intermediates alike.

If you liked this article be sure to check out our other articles at AalbergAudio.com

Spinet vs Console Piano

Introduction

There are four different types of vertical piano, listed from shortest to tallest: spinet, console, studio and upright. Each type has a slightly different look and sound. We’ll explain the differences between Spinet and Console Piano to help you narrow down which instrument might be best for your family.

What is a Spinet Piano?

Upright or vertical pianos come in various different sizes and the spinet piano is the smallest of the upright pianos measuring between 36” and 40” tall from the floor to the top of the lid and weighing about 300 pounds. The keyboard is approximately five feet wide, like most pianos. But the spinet varies from other uprights not merely in size. Originally introduced in the 1930s, spinets were designed to be smaller and cheaper than other uprights, and to accomplish this, is a different kind of action was introduced called a drop action or an indirect blow action with rods or “elbows” under the keyboard connecting each key to the action.

Also, the keys on a spinet piano are shorter. The top of the piano is just a few inches above the keys and the action is located below, this does save space and dimensions, but it results in a lack of control.

That benign said, there were brands of spinet that found great favour over the years. Baldwin’s Acrosonic spinet piano was considered one of the better spinets as its action was well designed and built to be removed in one piece for service. The string scale was one of the better spinet scales and reasonably easy to tune (as much as any spinet is). Other commercial brands included Wurlitzer spinet pianos which were modest models, reasonably priced, as were Kimball spinet pianos. These days most manufacturers have stopped producing spinets entirely.

Youtube Reviews

YouTube Review #1 – This video talks about how we’re the spinet pianos made and why were they made that way. Also, the video answers the question if the spinet piano is the right one for you.

Youtube Review #2 – By watching this video you will know what NOT to do when looking for a piano.

Is it Worth it?

Spinets were usually the least expensive entry-level pianos a company would manufacture, and most are not worth repairing. Many of these small, cheap pianos were so poorly designed and constructed that, even when new, and regulated and tuned as well as possible, they played poorly and sounded terrible.

Quality

Spinets are space savers and usually less expensive than other uprights, but a lesser quality of sound is the tradeoff. A spinet is not capable of producing the nuanced sound, touch and volume required by professional musicians due to their smallness and action design. The other drawback is that spinets are more difficult to maintain, thus more expensive to tune and repair. Tuners and technicians generally avoid working on this type of piano.

Spinet piano advantages 

Spinet pianos are smaller and more lightweight than consoles. They are ideal for small apartments and homes, small performance venues and consumers wanting a piano but not wanting to make the major investment needed to acquire a large concert quality instrument.

Spinet piano disadvantages

It has adequate volume for smaller venues (a home, a small club stage) but cannot filla large hall. They also require tuning more frequently than larger more stable console cabinets. As an investment, spinets rarely retain value through the years.

What is a Console Piano?

The console piano is the next largest upright, and is somewhere between 40” and 44” tall, – compact and space-saving, but with better performance than a spinet. Manufacturers today are using actions from larger uprights in consoles to give console pianos bigger performance, and while the original consoles were 43” tall, the continental console designs have crept upwards to 44 inches. Because of the popularity of the console piano, manufacturers continue to improve the design.

May manufacturers build console pianos that continue to enjoy robust sales today. Yamaha, Baldwin, Pearl River, Pramberger, Charles R.Walter, Kawai and Young Chang – just to name a few.

607 Queen Anne Classic Mahogany

Price

The price of a console piano can vary from 5500$ to 12000$. When buying a piano you should consider how seriously do you take your piano game. A good piano is an expensive investment so you should take all of the aspects into consideration when buying one!

Benefits:

Take Up Less Space

The design of these compact pianos will save you the necessary space. Their width is 5 feet (1.5 m) on average, including both the keys and console. Since they are only 2 feet (61 cm) deep, it is an excellent option to place along the wall.

On average, upright models are at least 50 inches (1.3 m) high, but you can find higher models, as well. On the other hand, you can purchase a spinet, the smallest possible version of a vertical piano that is 37 inches (0.9 m) high.

All parts of these pianos, including action parts, strings, springs, and hammers, stand straight up. Thanks to the lid’s top position, you will get more sound without changing the piano position. Plus, the practical thing is that you can place the piano bench underneath the keyboard area.

Lower Price

Upright pianos are far less expensive than grand pianos because of the simple design, less labour and material used, and a quicker building process. You can find this instrument for the price of $3,000, but you should pay at least $5,000 to $8,000 for a higher quality model. If you want to save money, you can buy a used, antique upright piano for $500.

Quality

The sound quality of the console piano is absolutely satisfactory for most home pianists. Unlike spinets, console pianos have a normal action that sits directly on top of the keys, and the hammers sit in an upright (not dropped) position. Just as it should, a hammer strikes the string, which releases the key, and a spring pulls the hammer back into position. The action of a console piano (and most of the uprights) is not as immediately responsive and tonal quality and dynamics are not as rich as that of a grand piano, but it definitely preferable to the spinet piano’s touch and tone.

Console piano advantages 

Console pianos retain much of the volume and dynamic range of the grand piano. Larger sound boards, longer strings and greater hammer leverage gives the console a deep resonant tone able to fill even the largest concert hall. Concert quality console pianos retain their value and can even appreciate with age.

Console piano disadvantages 

The same features giving the console piano its advantages also works against it: size, weight and cost. Console pianos can weight as much as many grand pianos and also have an equal cost. The same amount of labor needed to move and install a grand piano is also required for the console.

Who Is It Best For?

Consol pianos are for anyone who wants to learn how to play the piano. Console pianos are easy to manage and control, especially if you’re new to playing the piano. The best part is that they are reasonably priced compared to Grand pianos.

Pros and Cons of upright pianos

ProsCons
Vertical pianos are far less expensive than even the smallest grand pianos.Quick depreciation lets you find a young, used piano for a good price.High-quality uprights have rich voices that age well.Upright pianos tend to depreciate in value quickly.Uprights are sensitive to temperature fluctuations because of the soundboard’s position. The sostenuto pedal is commonly omitted from verticals, but this allows space for the volume-decreasing “practise rail” pedal.

Pianos today

Nobody makes spinet pianos anymore. At some point they lost favorability with consumers and have since been replaced by less expensive consoles that don’t have to sacrifice the quality of the actions.

Despite spinets having different actions, there were some higher quality models – the Baldwin Acrosonic being a classic example – that were decent pianos. The inherent limitations in console and spinet pianos lies more in the size of the pianos more than anything else. With a smaller soundboard and shorter strings, the pianos are limited in the amount of sound they can produce.

Generally console pianos are superior to spinet pianos because of the regular style actions and the slightly taller size of the instruments which offers a more rewarding sound.

If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com

Korg Grandstage 88 Review

Introduction

This article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Korg Garndstage 88. If you are interested in buying the Grandstage 88 or you just want to know more about the synthesizer, you should keep on reading.

Price

The Korg Grandstage 88 is a well-made piano. The prices can vary depending on the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 1800 and 2700 euros. We have provided you with some online stores, where you can compare the prices. 

Amazon 2 199.99 $ = 1 806.97 €

Musicradar 2 499 $ = 2 699 €

Sweetwater 2 199.99 $ = 1 806.97 €

Product Description

The Korg Grandstage is a professional stage piano for stage use. Seven powerful sound engines make the Grandstage a true sound miracle. The instrument features 5 concert grand pianos and an upright piano of the highest sound quality. Korg’s RH3 keyboard reproduces even the most subtle nuances of the game. The Korg Grandstage also features many useful functions for live stage use, such as Favorite, button, a smooth sound transition, a panel lock and much more. The Grandstage comes with a special music stand and a newly developed piano stand with a matching chrome surface. A complete stage piano system that makes every performance a real pleasure.

Pros:

  • Simple user interface 
  • Dedicated dynamics section
  • Gorgeous piano sounds
  • Beautiful real hammer-action keyboard
  • Well-build, made in Japan
  • Some of the best Pianos, Electric Pianos and Organs
  • Controls feel solid 
  • Complete connectivity package 

Cons:

  • Best suits a very specific kind of player – jazz/classical
  • A small amount of editing options 
  • Only a single Reverb/Delay effect
  • Limited features
  • No expandable sound library

Is it Worth it?

If you want a dedicated stage piano, you will struggle to find any better than the Grandstage 88. It’s one of the best digital stage pianos on the market and has the most realistic feel in our top 12. 

Despite having around 500 high-quality preset sounds, it’s the piano voices and the keybed that make it worth buying. For jazz or classical pianists, it’s one of the best keyboard pianos around. If you play in a band that requires a wide range of sounds, you’ll get better value for money elsewhere. 

Benefits:

Good operation thanks to an intuitive user interface

The Korg Grandstage has a clear operating concept that makes it possible to select the desired sound quickly and specifically from the abundance of sounds. In addition, all effects, EQs and dynamic controls are directly accessible via front knobs and buttons.

A variety of useful functions for live use

The Korg Grandstage offers a wealth of useful functions for live use. Dynamic controls for direct control of articulation and expressivity can be found. Smooth Sound Transitions (SST) provides natural transitions between sounds. With the 3-band equalizer, you can adjust the sound character of the whole instrument to the acoustics of the venue.

The natural playing feel thanks to sophisticated keyboard technology

The Korg Grandstage has the weighted RH-3 keyboard. The 88 touch-sensitive piano keys react sensitively and allow nuanced control of the dynamics in interaction. The expressiveness of the Grandstage sounds is remarkable – the pure fun of playing!

Music stand, sustain pedal and piano stands included

The Grandstage comes with a special emergency console attached to the Instrumet, a damper pedal (DS-1H) that supports half-pedaling, and a newly developed piano stand ( standard N-SV) with a chrome-plated surface.

Specifications:

Number of keys 88

Type of keys Weighted (RH3 keybed), velocity-sensitive 

Other Controllers: Pitched, Mod Wheel 

Polyphony Up to 128 voices

Presets 500 sounds

Effects Reverb, Delay, EQ

Audio Outputs 2 x ¼ (left, right), 2 x XLR (left, right)

Headphones 1 x ¼” 

USB 1 x Type A, 1 x Type B

MIDI I/O In/Out

Pedal Inputs 3 x 1/4″ (damper, switch, pedal), DS-1H included

Bench/Stand Included Stand

Power Supply Standard IEC AC cable 

Dimensions:

Height 5.51”

Width 51.6”

Depth 14.1”

Weight 44 lbs

Manufacturer Part Number GRANDSTAGE88

Quality

The first thing you’re going to notice about the Grandstage is that it’s a well-built, quality piano.  And it’s not without robust features, either.

Usability

When turning on the Grandstage, all of the red backlighting turn on, which then dims down. The Piano does not instantly turn on, it has a startup time that is quick enough, around 30 seconds in total.

The sounds are pretty easy to navigate. You can think of the left hand as the ensemble section, or the “what goes layered with the piano sound” section. Turn the knob (after turning the section on with the corresponding button) and select your sound. You can then think of the right hand as the keyboard section, or the piano sound. Interestingly, the Ensemble side allows you to pick any Keyboard sound, and the Keyboard side lets you pick any Ensemble sound, so in reality, any sound is available from either side.  

Creating splits is easy—just press the dedicated split button! If you want to change where the split point is, just hold down the split button and press the key you want to split at. That’s it! You only get one split point, but each part gets its own MIDI channel. The swap button switches the upper and lower parts. Layering is also very easy and achieved in a similar manner via a single button push.

Speaking of changing sounds, the change between sounds are very smooth. KORG calls this the “Smooth Sound Transition” (SST) function, which creates seamless changes when you switch between sounds and effects, even while you perform. For many players, this is an essential feature.

Sound

This is GrandStage’s strongest suit, and the best reason to own one. Starting with the acoustic pianos, there are several to choose from German, Japanese, and Italian to name a few. Each sounds great and have their own character.

Additional Features:

  • Powered by 7 sound engines: SGX-2 acoustic piano; EP-1 electric pianos; CX-3, VOX, and Compact organs; AL-1 analog modeling; and the HD-1 PCM engine
  • Acclaimed RH3 keybed responds to your every playing nuance
  • Premium RH3 weighted hammer action for realistic concert grand feel: heavier in the lower register, lighter in the upper
  • Master effects, including 3-band EQ, reverb, and delay
  • Dynamics knob lets you customize the playing feel of the keyboard in real time
  • Favorites buttons let you register up to 64 of your go-to sounds for instant recall
  • Korg’s Smooth Sound Transition (SST) creates smooth and natural changes between sounds and effects while you perform
  • Effortless layer and split functionality
  • Panel Lock prevents sounds or settings from being inadvertently changed
  • Crafted in Japan to exacting Korg standards
  • Includes keyboard stand, DS1H damper pedal, and music rest

Warranty

Warranty coverage is provided by the Korg distributor in the country which the product was purchased. 

If you register your Korg keyboard, keyboard rack module or digital piano online within 90 days of purchase, Korg will extend your Korg manufacturer’s warranty for an extra year for free if purchased from a Korg authorized dealer. A copy of the registration confirmation email and a legible copy of the product’s sales receipt from the authorized dealer are both required for extended warranty service.

Who Is It Best For?

At the end of the day, this Grandstage instrument is for someone who wants a huge, realistic library of diverse sounds & tones with the ability to find them quickly and to be able to play a big variety of musical styles.

What Do People Say About It?

You can find some feedback and synthesizer reviews on Amazon and Thomann. A lot of people prefer buying their synthesizers online due to the better prices rather than in stores. Overall the Korg Grandstage 88 has been rated on average 3.3 out of 5 stars on Amazon Review. 

Amazon Reviews #1“By far the best sounding stage piano available in 2019. Could it be improved upon? Certainly. But it’s by far the richest sounding of the current lot. I took one star off for the heavier action. I have a grand piano and its action is still lighter than the GS. Why work harder than you have to? Very nice design too, relative to other stage pianos. Intuitive to use.”

Amazon Reviews  #2“Love this stage piano. I am new to playing piano and the quality of the product and features has been awesome and a great vehicle for learning!”

To get a better idea of how the Krog Granstage 88 sounds and looks like, we have provided you with a couple of Youtube videos, where you can get a quick synthesizer review and sound check.

YouTube Review #1 – This video will give you a demo of the Korg Grandstage digital piano. By watching this video you will get a better idea of how to master your Korg Granstage and how to make playing on it more fun and comfortable. 

Youtube Review #2 – This video gives a quick overview of the piano and also demos the functions Korg Grandstage has to offer. 

The Verdict: Is it Worth It?

To sum it all up, the Grandstage sounds good, plays well, and is extremely easy to use. I’m wasn’t kidding when I said it’s one of the best-sounding stage pianos, and I’m willing to overlook the slim feature set as a result.

In the end, I highly recommend the Grandstage for pianists who want a wide palette of good-to-go sounds. It sounds awesome, and if you don’t need the extra bells and whistles, the Grandstage is an easy choice.

If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com

Yamaha CP4 review

Introduction

This article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Yamaha CP4 Digital Piano review. If you are interested in buying the CP4 or you just want to know more about then, you should keep on reading.

Price

The Yamaha CP4 is a well-made piano. The prices can vary depending on the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 1700 and 2500 euros. We have provided you with some online stores, where you can compare the prices.

Musicradar 2399€ – 2999$

eBay 1640.17€- 1999.99$

Amazon Prime 2050.21€ – 2499.99$

Product Description

Yamaha CP4 is designed by Yamaha for a specific purpose, stage piano. It’s lightweight, focused function, and simplicity. Unlike other workstations and synthesizers, Yamaha CP4 has an intuitive and convenient button layout and LCD indicator. Yamaha CP4 contains the sound of vintage electric piano to Yamaha’s current best grand piano CFX, CFIIIS, and S6. Yamaha CP4 Has 88-key Graded Hammer Action, and with the combination of grand piano sampling, players will be able to feel real grand piano.

Pros:

  • NW–GH keyboard feels great for acoustic and electric pianos alike.
  • The CFX presets are amongst the most attractive piano sounds ever offered in hardware.
  • A big, varied ‘production’ sound set and decent effects provision.
  • Mostly very easy to understand and use.
  • Useful audio file and MIDI control features.
  • Compact and relatively lightweight.

Cons:

  • Limited scope for sound editing, especially of the pianos and organs.
  • Menu-driven configuration feels clumsy at times.
  • Very few real-time control options are other than via foot-pedals.

Is it Worth it?

The Yamaha CP4 may not be the cheapest stage piano option but its wide array of features justifies its costs. So, is the Yamaha CP4 worth it?

We would answer with a strong yes. Any performer or composer needs this digital piano. It has some of the best recording and playback options on the market. The purchase of this product will raise the quality of your music exponentially

In-Depth Review of the above articles

Benefits:

1. Great value for money

There’s a big price difference between the CP1 and the CP4. You can get the CP4 at a price that offers more than you would expect. It can compare itself to acoustic pianos in many aspects but is at a fraction of the cost of an acoustic model. 

2. Reduced weight level

Yamaha CP4 weighs 38lbs when uncased, (17.5 kg). This manageable weight makes it possible for an individual to lift it while playing without being physically exhausted after a short while. The lightweight piano can also be moved between two locations with ease.

3. High-quality keys

The wooden piano keys (white only) beg only a click to bring about their acoustic warm sounds. They are actually easier and more balanced to play than any plastic keys available. They are covered in ivory and are not textured,  bring about the “graded hammer” action. This implies that the keys in the lower notes are heavier and they become lighter as you go up the keyboard in pitch.

Yamaha CP4 Stage Piano 1

4. Easy to navigate

Unlike the CP1, the CP4s cursor and jog wheels make it a lot easier to navigate. However, it’s not fitted with rotaries behind the screens. The blue backlight display works efficiently to convey parameters.

5. Ease in selecting sounds

Selecting sounds is done by clicking the category button and scrolling on the voices in the menu. You can also opt to call up the voices you want instead of scrolling through all of them.

6. Sound variety

Yamaha CP4 has a sound variety of 433 sounds offering one of the best sounds ever to come from a digital piano. On each of the 433 sounds, you will get multiple variations; each variation with different effects associated with it. As if that’s not enough, it has 321 inbuilt additional sounds. They are based on the sound synthesizer, which includes bass, drums, pads and clarinets.

Yamaha CP4 provides the following sounds:

a) Double equipped Fender Rhodes emulations.

b) Wurlitzer- A popular sound that was common in the ’70s.

c) The 80s DX 7 electric piano sound.

d) The CP80 grand piano sounds.

This stage piano from Yamaha has some solid advantages on its part. It offers a complete package for any pianist. It is the piano that can do solo as well as ensemble music within the blink of an eye and bring out the best in both.

However, before making the final purchase of this stage piano, consider that it does not come with inbuilt amplifiers. That means you will have to purchase the amplifiers separately if you think you’ll need those extra watts. It also doesn’t include a stand. Another possible consideration is that you can’t feed your own samples. Despite the few cons, Yamaha CP4 is a musical instrument that you should consider buying if you search for that extra something!

Specifications:

  • Dimensions
    • Width 1.332 mm (52.4”)
    • Height 161 mm (6.3”)
    • Depth 352 mm (13.8”)
    • Weight 17.5 kg (38.5 lbs.)
  • Keyboard

88-key Natural wood Graded Hammer (NW-GH) keyboard with Synthetic Ivory Keytops (with real-wood white keys)

  • Voices
    • Tone Generating Technology – SCM (Sectral Component Modeling) + AWM2
    • Number of Polyphony (Max.) – 128
    • Number of Voices – 433 (CFX:15, CF:15, S6:15, Rd:15, Wr:6, CP80:8, DX:18, Clav, Organ:67, Strings, Choir, PAD:86, Others:174, Others(Drum):14)
  • Effects (Types)
    • Reverb – 11 types
    • Chorus – 9 types (46 presets)
    • Master Compressor – 1 type (7 presets)
    • Master EQ – 5 bands
    • Instertion Effect – 62 types (226 presets) x 2 Parts
  • Connectivity (Connections)
    • Line Out – UNBALANCED [L/MONO] and [R] OUTPUT jacks (standard mono-phone), BALANCED [L] and [R] XLR OUTPUT jacks
    • Headphones – [PHONES] jack (stereo-phone)
    • Foot Switch – [SUSTAIN] and [ASSIGNABLE] FOOT SWITCH jacks
    • Foot Controller – 2 jacks 
    • MIDI – [IN] and [OUT] MIDI terminals
    • USB – [TO HOST] and [TO DEVICE] USB terminals
    • Mic Input – 
  • Other 
    • Controllers Pitch bend wheel, Modulation wheel, Part slider × 3, [MASTER VOLUME] dial, Data Dial, MASTER EQUALIZER slider × 5
    • Power Consumption – 18W
    • Additional package contents – Power cord, FC3 foot pedal, Owner’s Manual, Online Manual CD-ROM (containing Reference Manual, Synthesizer Parameter Manual, and Data List)
  • Control Interface 
    • Display – 40 characters × 2 lines, Character LCD with back-light

Quality:

Build

The CP4 has a slightly retro design but one can guess just by looking at it, that it’s meant for serious players and not beginners. Since this is a stage piano and it mimics acoustic piano as much as it could, it packs on a lot of weight. Weighing 48 lbs makes it difficult to carry. 

Furthermore, it’s 59.1 inches long and 17.7 inches wide, which means that the CP4 will take a lot more space than beginner or intermediate level keyboards.

Professional pianists don’t have to worry about portability as much because they rarely carry their pianos to different places. However, when they do need to carry their pianos around, they have their staff who do it for them. If you can afford to carry such a heavy piano yourself or have a staff to do it for you, then this should not be a problem for you.

Sound

Sound-wise the CP4 is impressive. The new CFX pianos are inspiring to play solo or as part of an ensemble, the CF pianos from the CP1 still sound great and the S6 samples, though thinner sounding, add another distinctive flavour. There are stereo and mono varieties too and all the samples sound great dry.

The modelled EP sounds onboard (reed and tine) are also very authentic and each model comes with its own corresponding modelled preamp, plus you can also tweak the strike position of the virtual tines/reeds!

There are plenty of other ways to tweak the sounds too, including using the high-quality five-band EQ, or the many great-sounding effects onboard. Each Voice has two insert-effect parts, a chorus block, reverb block and master compressor/EQ too.

Highlights include some lush reverbs, deep choruses, smooth auto-panning, some great vintage style compressors and nice crunchy/warm tube amp simulators. There’s also a wide range of versatile Motif-derived sounds available including strings, organs, synth pads, clavs, leads, basses, percussion, brass and more.

With around 433 sounds onboard, there’s everything you’ll need for most playing scenarios and the quality is high throughout. The only real downside is you can’t load your own samples like the Nord Piano 2. Highly recommended.

Additional Features:

MADE TO BE PLAYED

Like all fine instruments, the CP series keyboards simply beg to be played. Sit down with one, and the instrument becomes an extension of your hands and your musical imagination. The authentic piano voices and rich expressiveness come alive at your touch, and the sound is big enough to blast through a full band onstage – yet nuanced enough to work magic in an intimate club.

EXPRESSIVE POWER

Yamaha’s extensive experience in crafting fine acoustic pianos helps us in creating the ultimate digital pianos. Our advanced Graded Hammer Effect (GHE) action gives all keys an authentic resistance that increases from the top register to the lower – just as on an actual acoustic piano. This means that you can naturally pound out thunderous low notes with your left hand and let the fingers on your right dance and fly with the high notes.

SOUND CHOICE

In crafting the authentic sound of the CP series, we used meticulously recorded stereo samples of top-quality instruments, taken at various playing strengths, and included subtle elements such as String Resonance, Stereo Sustain, and even Key-Off Samples that capture the felt dampers muting the piano strings – providing the most authentic sounding and finely nuanced acoustic piano voices possible.

TAKE CENTERSTAGE

Step out front and make your presence known. The CP series has a special Mono Piano sound, complete with a compression effect, designed specifically for live performance. It has the punch and power to stand out, even in full band situations.

Warranty

Yamaha has a 3-year labor warranty on Digital Pianos! Warranty services will only be provided for defective products within the Warranted Area. Yamaha will, at its option, repair or replace the product covered by this warranty if it becomes defective, malfunctions or otherwise fails to conform with this warranty under normal use and service during the term of this warranty, without charge for labour or materials. 

Who Is It Best For?

Overall the Yamaha CP4 is an excellent choice that will work for anyone that needs reliable practice and performance equipment.

If you are looking for a stage piano that has years and years of experience behind it and that comes from a trusted reliable source the Yamaha CP4 is the option that you should be looking at.

What Do People Say About It?

You can find some feedback and digital piano reviews on Amazon, Sweetwater and Thomann. A lot of people prefer buying their pianos online due to the better prices rather than in stores. Overall the Yamaha DGX 660 digital Piano has been rated on average 3.8 out of 5 stars on Amazon UK Review.

Amazon Reviews #1“I am very happy with this keyboard. And from all I’ve seen Yamaha has quit making this version. It has been replaced by a newer version which does not have an internal amp or speakers, I presume mostly to reduce weight. I don’t do tours so this is not an issue with me. I think it is an incredible value for the money, with quite a few versions of “Rhodes” EP, DX EP and acoustic piano sounds. The action is nice, not too firm but firm enough to give you a good piano feel. There are a couple presets that don’t quite measure up, the ‘scat’ one is the most obvious. But this is a minor quibble: if you want a quality keyboard which will give you all the basic acoustic/electric piano sounds, this is the one. Get one while they last.”

Amazon Reviews #2“Good piano sound, plays like a real piano, has good choir sound, the string sounds could be better, especially when blending with the piano. And then there are all the MIDI sounds that I didn’t realize came with it, and I still haven’t gotten to the bottom of all the features.

I like the way the often-used functions are laid out as buttons, that is a good design and a good implementation.”

To get a better idea of how the piano sounds and looks like, we have provided you with a couple of Youtube videos, where you can get a quick piano and sound review.

YouTube Review #1 – This video by Yamaha will give you a quick demo of how the PC4 sounds like and what it is capable of. It also shows different effects and how they perform. 

Youtube Review #2 – By watching this video will give you a thorough overview of the digital piano. Sweetwater introduces the piano from different aspects and also talks about the different features.

The Verdict: Is it Worth It?

For an expensive and flagship keyboard, the Yamaha CP4 stage piano is totally worth it. Besides providing great sounds and key sensitivity, it’s packed with a lot of other features. It allows you to layer tones and split the keyboard for different players or into different instruments. The editing options provided in this keyboard are so abundant and so easy to apply.

If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com 

Korg KROSS 2 88 MB Synthesizer Workstation review

This article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Korg Kross 2-88-MB Synthesizer Workstation. If you are interested in buying the Kross 2-88-MB or you just want to know more about the synthesizer, you should keep on reading. Check out other articles from Aalberg Audio.

Product Description:

The Korg Kross 2-88-MB is a class-leading synthesizer, which is designed to be your main keyboard. Kross 2 features everything a performer needs. Delivering a broad range of sounds that leave even previous-generation flagship models in the dust.

The Kross 2-88-MB has easy access to the power batteries. It has now two compartments: one to the left of the Kross’s interface, that has a large battery compartment, which houses an additional compartment for backup batteries or a USB cable, and the second compartment, that can hold anything you’d like, is on the opposite end of the interface. Those compartments give you the opportunity to store necessary cables and power supplies in a hand reach, rather than storing them completely separately.  

The LED lights that move across the surface of the keyboard are informative and the central screen in the middle is very clear and also informative. But don’t worry, the controlling is not limited only to a tiny screen, luckily you can plug in your laptop, computer, or even an iPad/iPhone. 

The Kross 2-88-MB features a great-feeling rubberized finish in “super matte black” simultaneously sleek and elegant, but also durable and comfortable.

Price:

The Fender stratacoustic is a well-made and affordable electroacoustic guitar. The starting price of the Fender stratacoustic is 280.00 euros which can go up to 400.00 euro

Pros:

  • It offers the sound quality of a Korg workstation without a premium price. 
  • It’s a considerable improvement over the original Kross. 
  • It’s light and manageable.
  • The keyboard, while not first-in-class, is much better than it seems. 
  • The keyboard has two compartments for storage. 
  • Can connect to a device for better control and editing.

Cons:

  • The synthesizer does not come with a case for transport. 
  • Might be too long for your liking.  (Might find yourself bumping into things while moving it, so be aware of scratching/damaging the exterior.)
  • Its screen is small and the onboard editing system harks back to the 1990s.
  • Its keyboad dosen’t generate aftertouch.
  • There’s no XLR mic input. 
  • It uses an external PSU.

Is Korg KROSS 2 88 MB Synthesizer Workstation Worth it?

Kross 2 will appeal to someone who wants something they can make complete tunes with, on the road. Gigging composers will love it, to put those hours on a tour bus to good use, as will studio producers. If you’re in need of a quality workhorse composing tool, then this really is probably the most affordable and fully featured contender for your cash out there right now. A great bit of kit for the asking price.

In-Depth Review of the above articles

Benefits:

  • 120 voices of polyphony eliminate note stealing.
  • Powerful sampling engine and sample trigger pads. 
  • Ideal for a broad range of musical styles.
  • Extremely lightweight (27 pounds; 12,25 kg)
  • Sound Selector makes it easy to find the sound you are looking for. 
  • Favourites function lets you register 64 sounds or audio songs for one-touch access during gigs. 
  • External input jacks let you connect a mic or external audio source.
  • Quick Layers/Split function for on-the-fly versatility.
  • A stereo audio recorder allows you to record and overdub your performance and vocals.
  • Connects to your computer via USB for plugin integration with your favorite DAW

Specifications:

  • Dimension (WDxH) 

Width: 1,448 mm (57.01”)

Deph: 383 mm (15.08”)

Height: 136 mm (5.35”)

  • Weight 

12.3 kg / 27.12 lbs (excluding batteries)

  • Keyboard 

88 keys NH (Natural weighted hammer action, no aftertouch) keyboard. Normally A0-C8 (adjustable in the range [-A-]…C7]-[A1…C9])

*The NH keyboard delivers a playing feel similar to that of an acoustic piano, with low notes feeling heavier and high notes feeling lighter.

Split Zones Yes

Modulation Wheel Yes 

Sound Engine Samplebased

MIDI interface 1 x In, 1 x Out

Storage Medium USB to Host

USB-port Yes (1 x Type B)

Effects Multieffect processor – 134 different effects 

Effect Types: Reverb, Compressor, Chorus

Arpeggiator Yes

Audio Outputs 2 x ¼” (line out)

Audio Input 1 x ¼” (mic), 1 x ⅛” (line)

Digital Output No

Display Yes 

Power Source 9 DC power supply / 6 x AA batteries

  • Sound Engine 

The Number of Combinations/Programs/Drum Kits: 

  • User Combination – 896 Combinations (384 Preload)
  • Player Programs – 1280 Programs (768 + 128 Preload)
  • User Drum Kits – 58 Drum Kits (42 + 5 Preload)
  • Preset Programs – 265 Programs (256 GM2 Programs + 9 GM2 Drum Programs)
  • Total number of preload programs and preset programs – 1,208 (943 preload programs, 265 preset programs
  • Accessories (sold separately)
    • Keyboard – Standard-L-SV
    • Soft case – SC-KROSS 2 88/KROME 88

Quality

The quality of the Korg KROSS 2 88 MB Synthesizer Workstation 2 88 MB Synthesizer Workstation simply stunning, bolstered by PCM data that are approximately twice as large as predecessors like the X50 and the PS60. For your giggling pleasure, Korg has lavished attention on frequently-used sounds such as rock/jazz organ, strings, brass, and synth sounds. But you also get ear candy flavours like a toy piano, accordion, combo organ, church organ, and even a vintage tape sampler, along with cutting-edge dance music/electronica sounds — unique sounds you won’t find in any other synth at this price. And with Sound Selector and a favourites function, finding and organizing your sounds for instant onstage deployment is a piece of cake.

A diverse array of more than 1,000 present sounds has been supplemented by additional PCM with 128 new programs that include piano and electric piano, and also fulfil your needs for cutting-edge EDM with synth and drum sounds plus 27 drum track patterns.

The Korg KROSS 2 88 MB Synthesizer Workstation features Krog’s Natural Weighted Hammer Action (NH) keyboard. The NH keyboard has a realistic and comfortable piano-style hammer, with a heavier feel in the lower register and a touch that becomes lighter as you move into the high register, allowing the subtle nuances of your fingerprints t show through in your performance. This keyboard is perfect for playing piano and electric piano sounds while being light and portable for bringing Kross 2 to your gigs!

Additional Features:

  • 88-Key Natural Hammer Action Keybed
  • 1000+ Present Sounds, 120-Voice Polyphony
  • 128MB of Expansion PCM Memory
  • Sampler with 16 Trigger Pads 
  • The rubberized matte black finish is sleek and uniquely durable
  • Rich sounds powered by added PCM
  • An additional storage compartment on the side where you can store vires or even a foot pedal would fit in there.

Warranty

Warranty coverage is provided by the Korg distributor in the country which the product was purchased. 

If you register your Korg keyboard, keyboard rack module or digital piano online within 90 days of purchase, Korg will extend your Korg manufacturer’s warranty for an extra year for free if purchased from a Korg authorized dealer. A copy of the registration confirmation email and a legible copy of the product’s sales receipt from the authorized dealer are both required for extended warranty service. To register your Korg product, please click http://i.korg.com/Register

What Do People Say About Korg KROSS 2 88 MB Synthesizer Workstation?

You can find some feedback and synthesizer reviews on Amazon and eBay. A lot of people prefer buying their synthesizers online due to the better prices rather than in stores. Overall the Korg KROSS 88 MB Synthesizer has been rated on average 2.8 out of 5 stars on Amazon Review. 

Amazon Review #1 – “So far it’s is awesome. Would have gave a 5 star but the box it came in look to have been in war. The box had a hole in back big enough to put my arm in. But to my surprise and amazon good packaging it appears to be alright. But that’s wasn’t Amazon fault or Korg’s fault! It look to be the carrier’s but who knows. But like I said the keyboard is everything i hope for. Just hope I can live up to it! This keyboard does it all. So I’m going back and clicking the five star instead of the four, because the keyboard is a winner. Hope I can fine a mic to match up to it’s ability of the great sound it will produce! Just remember to get studio monitors to capture all of the great frequencies it creates.”

Amazon Review #2“Great Keyboard workstation! I tried the Roland Juno DS88. I didn’t like the drum samples as well as the Yamaha MX88 or Korg Kross 2 88. Also I did not like the slick ivory keys on the Roland Juno DS88. I tried the Yamaha MX88. It was nice but over all the Kross 88 was the best & had more piano sounds. I thought the Yamaha MX88 & Kross88 felt about the same when you played them. But over all I felt the Korg had the best samples. I guess that’s why it cost $75.00 more than the others. Goes back to you get what you pay for.”

Thomann Review #1“I’ve only had the Kross 2-88 MB for a week – in this respect an “entry-level rating” – I’m semi-professional – I actually wanted to buy an electric piano …! – use it at home – focus on “homerecording” – even when unpacking (18kg) you can feel that you are not dealing with a “toy” – the device is elegant (rubberized!) and very user-friendly and tidy – no show! – sensational for this price range !! – the first contact with the keyboard brings joy! – it has nothing to do with a classic synthesizer keyboard like I used to know – TOP !!!! – played the first piano samples – rich, beautiful sounds – 896 – (120 voices / polyphonic !!) – very dynamic feel!

Of course, everything can still be set individually … – great e-piano sounds – all sounds can be combined with each other – therefore countless possibilities – it makes sense to simply play your way through all sounds (a few hours) at the beginning in order to know what is hiding here – I have discovered many useful sounds that also inspire you for recording …! In the direct evaluation of the E-Piano / Kross 2, the Kross comes off a bit worse in terms of sound quality … – if you play the Kross over headphones, I am not missing anything!

Sure, a professional piano (3000 €?) Is even more voluminous when it comes to sound generation – but I’m not a professional !!! – The sound is absolutely sufficient for this price range and regardless of the price – if you consider the other countless features of the Kross 2: drum kit (68 – top!), effects (128), sequencer, multi-track audio recorder, arpeggiator, pad sampler, real time tone control , Midi sequencer, 128 favorite sounds, … – and much more – I don’t want an electric piano, please …!

So much for today – if I have conquered the Kross 2 again, there will be another evaluation …!

Crucial! – very good sound – keyboard unrivaled in this price range! I wish you a lot of fun with the Kross 2 – but please only order in “MB” version …!

Customer service from Thomann is absolutely top level – here you still have to deal with (consistently very friendly!) People …!”

To get a better idea of how the Krog KROSS 2 88 MB Synthesizer Workstation sounds and looks like, we have provided you with a couple of Youtube videos, where you can get a quick synthesizer review and sound check.

Youtube Review #1 – In this video, you can see a quick presentation from Sweetwater present on the Kross 2. The video depicts the different aspects of the synthesizer and some new features that make the instrument even more special.

Youtube Review #2 – In this video, you can see an unboxing of the Kross 2-88-MB by Joyce Chahine. This video gives you a thorough look at what the Kross 2-88-MB has to offer and how the different settings can be adjusted.  

The Verdict: Is Korg KROSS 2 88 MB Synthesizer Workstation Worth It?

The Korg KROSS 2 88 MB Synthesizer Workstation sounds great, even though it lacks some of the facilities of instruments costing two or three times as much, it is still a powerful instrument and it’s price will ensure that there’s a place for it. The additional features like extra compartments and powering the device with AA batteries will also make traveling and gigging with the Kross 2 much less of a hustle. 

Yes, if you are looking to buy a reasonably priced synthziser, then I suggest to go for it. If you like this article and found the provived information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com