I'm fed up with this damn keyboard!


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Hi everyone.

I played a Roland G800 for 15 years. No problem. One day I decided to explore my options. I went through a few different keyboards. Roland G1000, Casio CTK-6200, Roland BK-3, Roland VA-7...

Which one has the best rythms, the best sounds, the best key action, the best display, the list goes on. I got to the point where I was tinkering around with keyboatds that much that I wasn't playing music anymore!

So, my point is, should we stop worrying about which keyboard is best and just play some music? Top of the line workstation, or bottom of the line arranger, let's make some music.

Does anyone else feel this way?
 

Rayblewit

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You gotta just bite the bullet sometimes and go with your gut.

If you have been happy with your 15 YR old Roland . . Just go this path. Look at the next generation Roland model and buy the damn thing and stop stressing.

So, my point is, should we stop worrying about which keyboard is best
Yes!

Ray
 
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So, my point is, should we stop worrying about which keyboard is best and just play some music? Top of the line workstation, or bottom of the line arranger, let's make some music.

Does anyone else feel this way?
I sort of do.

The thing is, there's no such things as the "best" keyboard. It's what's best for you, the user, considering all factors, including budget.

Keyboards aren't cheap, so I do think it's important to do a bit of research before purchasing to ensure you don't end up with something that's unfit for (your) purpose. But I've also seen people who get so wound up in every little feature that they never end up making a decision, or send multiple keyboards back to the manufacturer.

As Ray says, at some point you need to bite the bullet, make a decision, learn how to use the thing and actually play it.
 
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I have a Korg PA 700 that cost me £1000 six months ago. It has more than enough Styles as standard for my keyboard needs, if I want another Style that is not already onboard I find a suitable MIDI file online and install that and during the installation process the Korg converts it into a Style, I can then go in and tweak the instruments to suit. Even just noodling alone with a Style it produces a great sound.

If I want variation in what I play then I select an MP3 file that I have on the USB memory stick that is permanently stuck in the back of the 700 and play along with the song.

Roland keyboards have Arrangers similar in price and functions.

Incidentally I also have a Korg Kross 2 workstation synth and that is totally different and for me its certainly a more creative piece of kit and if this type of kit is of consideration then this Korg and the Roland Juno DS models are well worth trying, if funds allow I would go for the 88 key version of the Juno DS which should cost less than £1k.

Its what works for you that matters and researching online can only partly do the task, only hands on playing will get you the best kit for you.

I think we have had a similar conversation before and my advice is still to take a trip over the Pennines into Manchester and go to the PMT store where you can play as many different makes and models as you want, it will be well worth the 1 hour journey each way.

I have no connection with PMT it is just that their store is huge and they have dozens and I mean dozens of keyboards on display and available to play.
 
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Hi everyone.

I played a Roland G800 for 15 years. No problem. One day I decided to explore my options. I went through a few different keyboards. Roland G1000, Casio CTK-6200, Roland BK-3, Roland VA-7...

Which one has the best rythms, the best sounds, the best key action, the best display, the list goes on. I got to the point where I was tinkering around with keyboatds that much that I wasn't playing music anymore!

So, my point is, should we stop worrying about which keyboard is best and just play some music? Top of the line workstation, or bottom of the line arranger, let's make some music.

Does anyone else feel this way?[/QUOTE
I have a 61 key Casio and a 61 key Yamaha. Both have distorted sounds when playing a B note and overly loud sounds when I play a D note. Do you know of a fix for this?
 
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Hello...

It sounds to me like there's something wrong with the key contacts. I have a Roland VA-7 which had a overly loud D next to middle C. I opened up the case, took out the offending key, and sprayed the rubber contact with electrical maintenance spray. It fixed it for a while but now the problem has returned. I think the contact just needs a better clean. Maybe the problem is the same with your keyboards. Strange that it's happening with both keyboards though...
 
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Hi everyone.

I played a Roland G800 for 15 years. No problem. One day I decided to explore my options. I went through a few different keyboards. Roland G1000, Casio CTK-6200, Roland BK-3, Roland VA-7...

Which one has the best rythms, the best sounds, the best key action, the best display, the list goes on. I got to the point where I was tinkering around with keyboatds that much that I wasn't playing music anymore!

So, my point is, should we stop worrying about which keyboard is best and just play some music? Top of the line workstation, or bottom of the line arranger, let's make some music.

Does anyone else feel this way?
I understand your pain. I ended up just taking 2 controller keyboards to my gigs and using my virtual instruments and just one real synth workstation on stage BUT. Instead of using the features of the workstation, I set it up in multitimbral mode (combination mode or whatever your workstation calls it), where you have one sound on each of 16 MIDI channels. I picked my 15 most used sounds for the first 15 channels and left channel 16 open for Program Changes. I hook up all the MIDI ins and outs to the controllers.Then I use MidiKuper (a Windows app on a laptop) to set up permanent scenes that can use any of my virtual instruments or the 16 sounds on my workstation. This allows me to step through scenes I can design for each song by just clicking a button. Then I can use all the sounds I want without worrying about how to manage all that on stage. MidiKuper does it for me. I can now use sounds I could not have used live before.
 
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That sounds like a complicated setup! Sounds interesting though. I get a bit fed up of deciding between keyboards and tinkering around endlessly and never been satisfied. Perhaps I've become fed up of playing. I'm 41 now and have been at it since I was 14.
 
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If you are fed up of playing then its time for a new challenge.

Whatever that maybe is up to you.

To give a music related analogy, in the seventies I became an audiophile with a great amp, turntable and speakers, all of which I kept changing, then one day I was playing an LP and part way through I stopped it. For 1/2 hour I had not been listening to the music but listening for equipment faults, being an audiophile then went out the window.
 
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I do seem to have become caught up in comparing features and specifications of different keyboards instead of just enjoying playing, like I used to do.

Do you have any YouTube videos or anything that I can listen to of your playing? It's always nice to watch other's play.
 

happyrat1

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I've been pretty much a victim of Gear Acquisition Syndrome (GAS) for the past two decades or more.

In my old age I've bought and sold at least two dozen keyboards.

I am finally happy with my current home studio and have no more interest in upgrading to the latest and greatest. I've finally found the rig that works for me, a mix of ROMplers Workstations, VA and Analog synths and a handful of drum boxes that pretty much meet my needs.

My setup now is easily worth $10 K but I horsetraded and incrementally upgraded along the way to put it together for a fraction of that cost.

My point is, that if keyboards are your passion and you can spare a grand or two per year over the decades you will be able to build up a studio quality rig that would even give the Rick Wakemans and Jordan Rudesses of the world a run for their money.

Likewise, by keeping your interest in the hardware alive you keep your interest in playing alive as you explore the sounds and capabilities of each new board as you acquire it and eventually you will be satisfied with the results.

All it takes is time and perseverance and the luxury of some free cash and a place to play without disturbance.

As the Buddhists are fond of saying, it is the journey and not the destination that matters.

Take time to smell the roses along the way and play what you enjoy. In 200 years we'll all become dust anyway :)

Gary ;)
 
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Gary quotes Buddism, I on the other hand am a Taoist, Yin and Yang, a balance in life.

In other words you need to balance what you seek and you can only do this with the aquisition of two new keyboards.

So get thee to PMT and play a Korg PA700 and a Roland Juno DS88, then play as many other keyboards costing £1000 each as you can.

If £1000 for each keyboard is to much then check out via actually playing a Roland Juno DS61, a Korg Kross 2, a Korg PA600, a Yamaha S670 and as many in the £5-700 price bracket as they have on display.

Do make sure the workstations are playing through the same PA systems so you do get direct comparison.

List the pros and cons of each.

Then buy whatever suits just check prior that Visa is working or you may have a wasted buying trip.

:)
 

SeaGtGruff

I meant to play that note!
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then one day I was playing an LP and part way through I stopped it. For 1/2 hour I had not been listening to the music but listening for equipment faults
https://genius.com/Todd-rundgren-intro-lyrics

Before we go any further, I'd like to show you all a game I made up. This game is called "Sounds of the Studio", and it can be played with any record, including this one

You can play it, uh, with ... you can even play it with your favorite record - you may be surprised. Now if you have a pair of headphones you better get 'em out and get 'em cranked up 'cause they're really gonna help you on this one

Now I'm sure you all recognize this. (hissing noise) This is called hiss. It comes on records that were mastered lousy or mono reprocessed for stereo or any number of things

(humming noise) This of course is hum

P's popping - This is the sound of bad editing

And here's what happens when the machine gains control and mangles your tape. (machine noise) Punch ... outs

Now all you have to do is find these sounds on the record, and whoever finds the most wins, of course. But don't --
 
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I do seem to have become caught up in comparing features and specifications of different keyboards instead of just enjoying playing, like I used to do.

Do you have any YouTube videos or anything that I can listen to of your playing? It's always nice to watch other's play.
The bad part is that all good keyboard synths have huge learning curves right now, so instead of evaluating the impact a piece of gear can make on my sound, I find myself, like you, worrying about the mechanics of managing the instrument rather than evaluating if it has quality sounds of the type I like to use in my work. Then you get that keyboard burnout.

That's why I ended up using MidiKuper. It boils everything down to setting up the sounds of my preference on my instrument, one on each midi channel, and then just layer, combine, split, etc. these sounds. And if you have more than one set of keys, you can access any of the synth channels on all your keyboards the same way, from any of your keyboards. This breaks down the barriers of restricting yourself to play certain sounds on one instrument, and others on another. You can come probably come up with other ways to use it to your preference.

Once that is set up, I don't have to learn that much about how each keyboard synth works. I just treat them all the same way through Midikuper and I can layer, split, and call up any sounds on any keyboard from any synth I have on stage, including virtual instruments on the computer. The features of the synths no longer matter that much. I just care they are multitimbral, and have good sounds and effects.

Midikuper has a YouTube channel with videos. Don't know if these videos would help you, but they might give you some ideas.
 

SeaGtGruff

I meant to play that note!
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Very clever perception Michael:cool:
Ray
That's a great album (Something/Anything?) by Todd Rundgren, filled with a lot of great pop ditties, as well as some great not-so-pop ditties. The "Sounds of the Studio" thing (which is called "Intro") is better if you can listen to it, as it contains sound effects that go along with the speaking. But the best part of all is that it cuts off in mid-sentence and goes immediately into a light and fun synth/keyboard instrumental called "Breathless." :)
 
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Just move into a smaller house, then you won't be able to FIT more boards: problem solved!

Works for me, I only have two boards setup at any one time: Arturia Keylab88 and Roli Seaboard Rise49. I have an old Alesis QS8 and a backup Keylab that I keep in storage.
 

SeaGtGruff

I meant to play that note!
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I had two keyboards set up in my bedroom-- but then I rearranged everything again to make room for a 40" TV, and now I have one keyboard set up and it's a tight fit.
 
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