Lightweight keyboard recommendations?


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What is this romantic attachment to 88-keys ? ..... for most of my life (except when I was learning music formally as a child on a genuine piano) I have played on 61 keys...... starting with a Yamaha YC-20 combo organ in 1975 in my first band..... and never found it a limitation.
61 can be limiting for piano. Also, if you like to use splits, you can end up with a pretty restricted key span for the individual parts. For example, playing LH bass will generally limit your RH sound to 37 keys or less. Even if you don't care about having the full 88, it can be very helpful to at least have 73. Though if you rarely split and aren't overly piano-focussed, 61 obviously can still work well.
 
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61 can be limiting for piano. Also, if you like to use splits, you can end up with a pretty restricted key span for the individual parts. For example, playing LH bass will generally limit your RH sound to 37 keys or less. Even if you don't care about having the full 88, it can be very helpful to at least have 73. Though if you rarely split and aren't overly piano-focussed, 61 obviously can still work well.
I agree, it all depends on what you are using it for. Plus with a lot of company's lines you have to go 88 to get weighted keys, so if that is something that is a want/need, then it is something you have to consider. It is nice to see more weighted 73s coming out though so.
 
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If you play anything of substance at all, 61 is too limited. I have a couple 61 key work stations when I play solo, but when I'm playing with a band, I use a 76. And when playing Jazz, a Nord stage 2 -88 or a Kurzweil 88
 
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If you need to do splits or LH bass, and need to stick with a 61, some 61s are more suited to this than others. One feature that helps is the ability to easily switch the octave on just one side of the split, on the fly. So for example, if you find you need to get to some keys out of range with your right hand sound, you could quickly shift the octave of that sound without also switching the octave of your LH sound. Another feature that is useful is some way of changing the sound on just one side of the split, without creating a glitch in the sound you're simultaneously playing on the other side of the split. Some boards let you do this by letting you easily change the sound for just one side of the split; others do it by letting you save LH+RH split combinations (which might share a LH sound, for example) that work with some kind of seamless sound transitions so you can switch the combi in the middle of a song without cutting off held notes. So some 61-key boards that I find more usable than most for split scenarios would be Roland Juno DS-61, Casio MZ-X300/X500, Korg PA700/1000. I'd still rather have more keys, though.
 

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