Need Many answers!!!Please help!!


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:confused:First i need to now what is the difference between a keyboard contoller and a synth key board?
what is a workstation?


after i know that i would like some sugestions on what to buy for my my band.

Im a guitarist but am going to get the Gr-20 synth. Wich allows me to plug into any midi interface such as keyboards and play.

Im looking for a keyboard that can produce choir sounds , many instruments, and orchestra sounds!

My band is metal, but we love the sound of orchestras and synths in music.


We also like egyption sounds, and styles.

Chanting sounds too.

Pretty much everything thing that the band symphony x uses

Just makes the band sound amazing.

Any suggestions will be every bit helpful!

Thanks!

-Bart
 
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Hi Bart!

Nice to know you want to sound like Symphony X :p

Well, to answers your questions, when it comes to electronic music instruments, you get many 'things' which performs certain functions and these 'things' don't always have to be the same piece of hardware. The midi protocol is used for these things to communicate with each other in almost anyway that you can think of.

A synth is a module which generally has alot of effects and features for creating and modifying sounds. Generally dedicated synths you find as seperate modules or as part of keyboard don't have latency problems. A software synth on a computer could pose a problem if you have a slow piece or bad software.

A sampler is a module that allows you to record a sound at a certain pitch, and then have that one sound modified to other pitches so you can get the full range of a 'real' sound across the whole keyboard.

Sound modules or libraries are generally huge databases of already existing sounds such as piano, drums, strings, guitars and so forth. These are usually either generated through a synth(uses less memory, found on the cheaper end) or are pre-recorded sounds(more memory, generally more expensive). Generally better for creating already existing sounds like strings, orchestral instruments that having to try very hard to create those sounds yourself with a synth.

A sequencer is a module used to record the music electronically, as in play this note this hard at this time with this effect etc... unlike analog recording which records the pure sound waves.

A midi controller is any device which is used to play the music, and is useless on it's own and needs to be plugged into a synth or sound module. This is usually in the form of a keyboard(as in the black and white keys), but can be in any forms imaginable, assuming there are companies that produce them. I have seen drum pads, keytars, pedals and accordians so far as midi controllers :p.

Most 'keyboards' come with a combination of these features to varying degrees of quality, although there are some trends which gives rise to their common names.

A workstation is generally a keyboard with all these features built in(all in one piece of hardware) at good quality you can use to record semi or fully professional. If you want more info on these ask Sysryn, he knows alot more about these babies than me(they are all outside of my price range for now, so I havn't looked at them much yet).

Computers can generally perform any of the functions mentoined above, but as a controller and synth you will have the most trouble due to lack of versatility in the controller sense and cpu restrictions on the synth side.

Generally, there is alot of versatility in the way you can use the various parts and 'things' together. For example you can hook up a controller to sound module which goes through any number of synths to modify the sound which then passes it's info to speakers and sequencer.

But when buying anything, here is some advice I generally adhere to:

First find out what is possible(hopefully this post so far gives you a good crashcourse). Then find out what is available, for this you will just have to do alot of research and read up alot of specs on products. Then find out what you want to do, will it be recording/live performance, who will do it. Then you set the budget you will use and start narrowing down the models and modules you will consider. Then you study the narrowed down selection in great detail, read reviews(both formal and user). Then you look for demonstrations of what it can do, generally you can narrow it down more by doing a search on the model number on youtube. Lastly, you go to your local music stores and try out the products extensively to make sure you will want to spend money on buying it.

But, regarding the best I can deduce about your situation from your post:

Regarding the GR-20: Personally, although it has great potential, that potential isn't reliable. Reviews for it is mixed with people that love it and other that say they get poor results. If you try this take your exact setup you are going to use to play with/record with and test it out in a store before you buy. Since from what I can tell it analyzes the analog signal from your electric and converts it into digital information for use with the synth, the quality of the signal conversion has too many variables, this is only something I would buy for fun, but not for $500. If you are going to use it as a standalone synth with a seperate midi controller, you might considering just buying a dedicated synth or sound modules with a midi controller.

If you want to use keyboard related instruments for metal music, especially Symphony X style with choirs, strings and so on, and assuming your budget to be around $500, in my opinion it would be better to buy a sound module/library and midi controller in that price range. You can get a very good keyboard midi controller for around $180 and spend the rest on a good sound module or synth.

Or if you don't already have one, recruit a keyboardist! If you want that kind of sound in your band it would be a wise thing to do, especially if you plan to play live(which is what metal bands do).

Just a last disclaimer, I'm rather new to the technical side of keyboards, but that is what I have been able to deduce so far about the general way in which instruments of this nature work.
 
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Hi guys

Ok i was eavesdropping a little and i have a question of my own: i have a yamaha psr e403, which is nice and all, but eventually im going to want more keyboards, so am i right in thinking if i get a controller like i dunno maybe a korg or a keytar or something that i can plug it into my yamaha and use the voices from it? And then like mess around more with those voices to make better ones? And if i had them both set up one on top of the other can i play them both at the same time using the voices from the yamaha?
 
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Ok i was eavesdropping a little and i have a question of my own: i have a yamaha psr e403, which is nice and all, but eventually im going to want more keyboards, so am i right in thinking if i get a controller like i dunno maybe a korg or a keytar or something that i can plug it into my yamaha and use the voices from it? And then like mess around more with those voices to make better ones? And if i had them both set up one on top of the other can i play them both at the same time using the voices from the yamaha?

You can't edit voices on yamaha psr e403, and you can only alter them a bit with an external controller... If you want to play with sound editing then you'll need a workstation, or even maybe a sampler of some sort.

The changes you can make via some external controller to your psr e403 sounds are minimal.
 
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Oh i see

Cool thanks for that, so i can actually use my yamaha voices on a controller? thats good then i dont have to have my hypothetical controller plugged into a computer or sound generator i can just use the yamaha? Awesome. Also would you say that the hanon excercises are essential to a decent practice routine?
 
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Cool thanks for that, so i can actually use my yamaha voices on a controller? thats good then i dont have to have my hypothetical controller plugged into a computer or sound generator i can just use the yamaha? Awesome. Also would you say that the hanon excercises are essential to a decent practice routine?

If your keyboard has MIDI INs and OUTs you can use it AS a controller and via controller.
 
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good.

Reading all this felt useful. Its hard to imagine how all this look like and perform, how they are practically used, etc.. I will dig down further, i guess it takes some time :) Thanks!
 
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Reading all this felt useful. Its hard to imagine how all this look like and perform, how they are practically used, etc.. I will dig down further, i guess it takes some time :) Thanks!

Actually it's very simple once you "feel" your way around it :)
 
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Starter Keyboards

You can't edit voices on yamaha psr e403, and you can only alter them a bit with an external controller... If you want to play with sound editing then you'll need a workstation, or even maybe a sampler of some sort.

The changes you can make via some external controller to your psr e403 sounds are minimal.

I looked at the PSR E403 in the store today. I'm thinking of buying this. I'm a beginner, I want to learn to play keyboard and play ambient music with spacy cool tones, but I don't want to spend all my time programming and learning parameters like I'd be doing with a MIDI. I feel kind of intimidated by the whole MIDI thing and am thinking that just learning keyboards by itself would be enough of a challenge for me. If I get good enough to jam with folks I can buy a keyboard amp. And if I get really great I can sell the $199 PSR 3400 unit to another newby for 1/2 price and buy something more sophisticated.

Seems like there's a place for the "starter" model. Like when I started playing banjo I had a $75 banjo. Well I got really good at it & was ready to play in a band so I bought the $350 Ibanez banjo. Now if I hadn't been able to master the instrument, it would have been a waste to buy the $350 model.
 

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