Advise; Roland Juno Gi vs Juno Di vs Korg krome 61

Discussion in 'Keyboard Purchase Recommendations' started by DavidC, Aug 16, 2015.

  1. DavidC

    DavidC

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    I am new to this forum as well as keyboards (I play the guitar), but am thinking about buying a keyboard for myself as well as my daughter who is about to start to play the piano. To me the sounds, especially piano sounds, is important, but I must admit that I don´t mind having some useful and fun functions.

    I am so new to this so I don´t really know what to ask about but would like to get your opinions and why.

    Thanks
     
    DavidC, Aug 16, 2015
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  2. DavidC

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    First off how old is your daughter and how serious are the two of you about learning to play?

    If you are serious about learning keyboard and especially piano I'd suggest looking at the Casio Privia Line of pianos.

    If your goal is to ultimately gig then get a stage piano like the PX-5S.

    If your goal is to entertain the family at Xmas and Thanksgiving then a home based model with built in speakers is a good choice.

    Take a look at the PX-350 or the soon to be released PX-560. They are keyboards you will never outgrow.

    Otherwise if your budget is at or below the $600 mark consider looking around on your local craigslist for a used professional stage piano that has at least a full compliment of the 128 general MIDI sounds.

    Those would be my suggestions for someone starting out with a budget between $500 and $1000

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Aug 16, 2015
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  3. DavidC

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    BTW, all the models you listed are synth action 61 key instruments. If your daughter wishes to learn proper piano style then she needs the 88 key or 76 key weighted hammer action of a stage piano.

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Aug 16, 2015
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  4. DavidC

    DavidC

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    Thanks Gary.

    She´s turning nine and hasn´t played at all yet.

    As a matter of fact we have an acoustic piano so she´ll be able to play the piano on that as well. However, for us both, and the rest of the family, the possibility to use headphones is an advantage.

    From your examples I´d say christmas parties and family holidays are our ambition. At least to start with. But I would also like to be able to create background sounds (drum beat, bass guitar, strings etc) when playing the guitar.

    When it comes to a stage piano with weighted keys. Would you say that the difference from semi weighted keys is huge? What does semi weighted mean?

    If I still would like to have the possibility to elaborate with different sounds, i.e. looking at a synthesizer. What would you say about the examples I mentioned?
     
    DavidC, Aug 16, 2015
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  5. DavidC

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    Offhand, the instrument I'd love to have started out with was the Privia PX-5S.

    It is not only a fully weighted hammer action stage piano but also a full blown synth allowing six part layering and four control zones.

    For just under a thousand bucks plus tax it's a fully capable stage instrument as well as a brilliant controller for software virtual instruments using an iPad or a computer based DAW.

    Fully Weighted Hammer Action is the closest you will find to a real piano feel.

    Semi Weighted is somewhere in between synth action and hammer action. It's a little more forgiving of sloppy playing and a little quicker than hammer action which takes practice on which to master fast runs and arpeggios.

    Generally 76 and 73 keyboards are semi weighted, 61 are almost always synth/organ action and 88's are pretty much always fully weighted and the better ones are hammer action as well.

    I have had no experience with Rolands and as for the Krome, I used to own a Korg TR76 and currently own a Korg X50 and my experience with Korgs has been that they are great for synth sounds and the orchestral sounds are pretty nicely tweaked right out of the box, but programming them can be a royal pain in the ass.

    The reason why I am so hyped on the PX-5S is that as far as future obsolescence goes, the keyboard would stay useful for decades to come. Not only does it come with excellent sampled piano voices and a full complement of organ, general MIDI and instrumental and synth sounds, but it is also designed to be a versatile MIDI controller as well.

    The reason why this is becoming more important every day is that more and more VSTi (Virtual Studio Technology instruments) are taking over the studios and stages these days and the sounds are far far better than anything available even in a $5000 workstation.

    So in essence, the budding future musician these days, only requires a good, solid controller and a USB hookup to a fairly modern computer and the sky is the limit as to what sounds can be produced.

    And if you are the type of person who is addicted to hardware gear as I am the controller approach still holds water.

    Simply by adding low priced sound modules to a controller instead of buying full fledged keyboards, you can have the stability of hardware along with the versatility of VSTis simply by adding a few compact modules to your rig.

    If you are looking at a future in creating music then all you really need is a good, solid controller or stage piano with controller capabilities and you can grow your horizons one component and one piece of software at a time.

    If I were to start over again from scratch today starting out with nothing the PX-5S is the first instrument I'd build on.

    BTW, you didn't mention a working budget but assuming from the synths you listed you're in the $599 to $900 range.

    That puts the PX-5S pretty much in the ballpark.

    Shop around and you can find them for close to $900.

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Aug 16, 2015
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  6. DavidC

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    BTW, to address the built in rhythms issue, the PX-5S does have a built in phrase sequencer and a track sequencer which can be used for backing tracks but you can pick up a dedicated drum machine for anywhere between $100 for a low end Zoom to a $400 Korg Electribe 2 which will give you drums and bass til the cows come home :D

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Aug 17, 2015
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  7. DavidC

    CowboyNQ

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    Hi David,

    I own both a Juno Gi and a Krome 61

    If you're looking for a "fun" instrument to supplement the piano you already have, and portability is important to you, then the Juno Gi/Di option is a pretty good one as they are both full of good sounds, very easy to use, and light as a feather. They both run off AA batteries (if you want), and because they're small and light they won't take up much space in your car on your "family holiday".

    Depending on how important creating your own backing tracks is to you, the Gi has a built in "digital recorder" which you can use for this purpose. I don't believe you can do this sort of thing on the Di.

    The last thing I'd say on the Gi is the piano sounds are OK but not wonderful. Again depends how important that is to you.

    As far as the Krome 61 goes, all my above commentary about the light weight and size apply equally. It's very portable. However it doesn't run off AA batteries like the Rolands.

    It is also an amazing sounding keyboard. The Gi sounds good but the Krome is great, I use it live in all three of my bands. It has an on board sequencer for creating your own backing tracks too. The piano sounds are far superior to the Roland.

    The other great point in the Krome's favour is the big touchscreen display. It's really fast and easy to get around. In fact both the Roland and the Korg are super easy to use when performing. They both have fairly good editors if you like creating or tweaking your own sounds. The Korg's is REALLY deep but with that comes a bit of complexity.

    I don't love the key action on it, and prefer the Roland's. Both keyboards have a "synth" action, and Gary has given you a comprehensive overview of keyboard actions above so I won't repeat what he wrote.

    The Krome is more expensive too. I bought my Gi second hand for AUD500 about two years ago, you should be able to get one for peanuts these days.

    Hope that helps!
     
    CowboyNQ, Aug 17, 2015
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  8. DavidC

    DavidC

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    Thanks to both of you. Now I am even more confused since I´ve gone from two to three options ;-) Appreciate your input.
     
    DavidC, Aug 24, 2015
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  9. DavidC

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    Visit a couple of music shops and test drive the models you're interested in.

    There's no substitute for a hands on test drive.

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Aug 24, 2015
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  10. DavidC

    ndkeyboard

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    Just to add my two cents to this discussion -
    I play both classical piano, teach, and play rock in a cover band. For the 9year old student, I recommend getting a "digital piano" (or acoustic...). My piano students who have only ever practiced on synths and 61-key keyboards, without weighted keys and without a full 88-keys, have always had problems with finger strength, finger control, playing dynamics, and knowing the keyboard topography (e.g. knowing where middle C is). The good news is digital pianos have a lot of bells and whistles that will make it fun for the dad to play too. Synth action is a completely different touch - fine for a gig, but not good for a child trying to develop fine hand muscles.

    I own and play a Roland Juno-di with my band. I love it primarily for the synth sounds, but it's only appropriate if you want something completely portable. I recently bought a used Nord Electro 2, and prefer that one for the piano and organ sounds. The Juno-di needs an amplifier: doesn't have built in speakers.
     
    ndkeyboard, Sep 7, 2015
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