Keyboard recommendation for my 13 Yr old daughter's setup

Discussion in 'Keyboard Purchase Recommendations' started by Andykara, Dec 6, 2017.

  1. Andykara

    Andykara

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    Hi, I'm building a setup for my daughter to record her own songs - I'm completely new to this but I'm thinking a Yamaha or Roland quality keyboard with weighted keys connected to her Mac (Garageband) via an external interface - plus a mic etc.

    I'm in the UK and am looking to buy second hand so I can pay £500-£700 for a really nice unit, say originally £1000-£1500 worth. Also, she'll be using Garageband - does that mean she doesn't need and of the extras on the keyboard - i.e. music instruments, tools etc? And if I just get a more plain keyboard so that all the processing/sounds get handled by Garageband, can I get a much better keyboard?

    Can anyone recommend a few models that I'll be able to find on Ebay UK? I'm looking to buy Roland or Yamaha. Apologise for my ignorance here - and help would be hugely appreciated.
     
    Andykara, Dec 6, 2017
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  2. Andykara

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    If you are looking for better value for your money I'd suggest looking around for an older Casio Privia PX-350 or PX-340. The current models are the PX-360 and PX-560.

    The Casio Privias are much more compatible, don't require any proprietary drivers and have excellent hammer action keyboards and are fully capable of interfacing with DAW software to create MIDI sequences.

    The Privias in recent years also have excellent quality piano voices and offer more bang for the buck overall.

    There is also some excellent support for Casio products on both http://casiomusicforums.com as well as a Casio Facebook group.

    If you are looking for something that your daughter will not outgrow in a year or two, these are my recommendations.

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Dec 6, 2017
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  3. Andykara

    Biggles

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    A Midi keyboard will do what she wants, I have an Alesis and that comes with Ableton Lite which is a DAW software. MAudio, Akai and Behringer Midi keyboards also get good reviews and they all are a very reasonable price.

    I also have the App Music Studio plus the extra instruments on an iPad which makes it a very portable setup.

    Check out Apples Logic Pro, which is Garage Bands big brother, a much superior piece if software.

    So with a £150 Midi Keyboard and the Logic Pro software at £200 she is good to go, I think that the iPad App and extra instruments was about £30
     
    Biggles, Dec 7, 2017
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  4. Andykara

    cpcohen1945

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    Some "MIDI controllers" (that is, a keyboard with no built-in sounds) come with a license for Ableton Live Lite, or some other PC-or Mac-based DAW (digital audio workstation) software. That's what my M-Audio controller had.

    That may have enough instruments, and other capabilities, so you won't have to spend any more money.

    The downside is that you can't play a MIDI controller "stand-alone"; without a computer and speakers attached, it's useless.

    . Charles

    PS -- Ahh -- she'll still need a microphone and possibly a mic preamp. A Shure SM58 mic, and a Behringer "USB mixer" (e.g. Q502USB) would do the job nicely.
     
    cpcohen1945, Dec 7, 2017
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  5. Andykara

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    A couple of caveats about going the controller route.

    1) When you feel inspiration hit you it takes a few minutes to boot up the system before you can actually play a note.

    2) software instruments have ZERO resale value so forget about trading up when you feel the need for something better.

    3) software instruments can be broken by OS updates and when they reach their end of life all support dries up and you have to buy the latest version.

    4) sometimes setting up and debugging a software instrument requires a certain level of technical expertise that you may or may not possess.

    A hardware instrument like the Privia PX-340 has none of these limitations and will outlast whatever OS system you may currently be running on whatever brand of computer you own.

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Dec 7, 2017
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  6. Andykara

    Biggles

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    Contrary to others for what you seem to want to do an older keyboard is pretty much a waste, as you will be connecting it to a Mac she is old going to use the keyboard as a
    MIDI input with Garage Band providing the software instruments to build up a song layer by layer, instrument by instrument. Hence a MIDI keyboard will be by far cheaper than an old second hand keyboard, it will not be broken by software any more than a second hand keyboard will. Garage Band has been around for years and no doubt will continue to be updated.

    As for mobile I take my MIDI keyboard, iPad and a set of PC speakers to a keyboard club and it works just fine, far easier to transport than my Korg PA700 keyboard.

    Now if she wants to perform live away from home then I think you would be better advised to save up more and buy her a decent new Workstation or Arranger Keyboard.

    Suggest you go into your local Music shop Dawsons, Rimmers etc and discuss options with them, many have traded in instruments which would make more sense buying from them than of eBay.
     
    Biggles, Dec 7, 2017
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  7. Andykara

    The Y_man Moderator

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    ...unless of course inspiration hits you in the shower or "on the throne" in which case it is immaterial whether you have a keyboard/workstation or controller/laptop setup! ;):p

    The Y-man
     
    The Y_man, Dec 15, 2017 at 9:47 PM
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  8. Andykara

    The Y_man Moderator

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    Any reason you are specifically after weighted keys?

    The Y-man
     
    The Y_man, Dec 15, 2017 at 9:49 PM
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  9. Andykara

    Biggles

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    It takes me 5 seconds to sort out the connectors, midi keyboard, and plug them into the iPad, start the App and start playing.

    My Korg keyboard takes 30 seconds to switch on and boot.
     
    Biggles, Dec 15, 2017 at 10:37 PM
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