Overall which can be a good keyboard for music production


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Dear All,
greetings!!!

till today i have seen a lot of demo videos and reviews,
But no one talked about the sound comparison.

I am searching for realistic sound. My top priority sounds are:
*Piano
*Strings instrument
*Wind instrument
*brass instrument

I want it for music production
I do use VSTs too but i want to sound of keyboard, coz every time connecting to a laptop isn't a feasible thing to me.
So searching for a workstation keyboard
i have a budget of 1400 dollars = 1 lac Indian rupee

Guys, your suggestion will be helpful me a lot.
Thanks
Soumo Shekhar Nath
 
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First thoughts are a Roland XPS30 which should retail @ c 61000 rupee or $850 USD.

This is the Asian version of the Juno DS which I have played and Happyrat (Gary) actually has. It is a great sounding keyboard in all areas with its one limitation being the onboard sequencer.

The Korg Kross 2, Korg Krome Ex, Yamaha MODX and Roland FA are also within the ball park.

Yamaha have the best piano sounds very closely followed by Roland, but Yamaha Brass especially is very bright and harsh to my ears. Korg are all very good but rich and mellow and in need of Eq adjustments to get them just right. So imo overall Roland sounds are the best straight out of the box.

With the above you will need either powered speakers (presonus Eris 5) or an amp (Vox VX50KB) so do factor these into your budget.

Now an arranger could also be under consideration, with a Korg Pa700 and Yamaha SX700 the main ones to consider.

I am biased since I had one but the Korg will provide the sound quality you seek and the multi track onboard sequencer will be a major benefit in song creation.

Plus with an arranger you will have a portable all in one unit which has onboard amp and speakers.
 
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I am searching for realistic sound. My top priority sounds are:
*Piano
*Strings instrument
*Wind instrument
*brass instrument
Since strings, winds, and brass play perfectly well from a hammer action keyboard but pianos don't play as well from non-hammer boards, I would try to get something with a hammer action. If budget prompts you to stick with a non-hammer action, at least try to choose one that is among the more playable non-hammer actions for piano.

When comparing boards, sometimes, boards that are more expensive in some countries are less expensive in others, so I don't know for sure what may or may not be available in your price range, so I'm going to expand from your $1400 to look anywhere up to $2000 U.S., in case any of those models are closer to your price range where you are.

In hammer action boards with strong piano and orchestral sounds, one of my top choices would be Kurzweil PC4. If that's out of budget, then look at their SP6 which will give you most of the same sounds, with the big limitations being that you lose the expressivity of aftertouch on your orchestral instruments and the expansion memory for adding additional 3rd party sounds (or sounds you could sample from your VSTs, though getting good results doing that is not always easy).

My other top choice would be Yamaha MODX8 where, for the sounds you're asking about, the main tradeoff vs. the PC4 would probably be the loss of aftertouch. I can't tell you which sounds better, that's subjective, but both are quality boards when it comes to piano and orchestral sounds. At lower cost, the MODX comes in non-hammer versions (MODX7, MODX6), but they really are not good feeling boards for piano playing (and also, 61 is a pretty restrictive size for playing piano).

Behind those, I would place the Roland FA-08. My opinion (though yours may differ) is that Roland pianos sound less natural than Yamaha or Kurzweil, and unlike the MODX8 or PC4, you can't load your own sampled instruments into it (nor does it have the aftertouch of the PC4), those are the reasons I move it down to the second tier behind those boards, but it's still good. The strings, wind, and brass are not so impressive out of the box, but you can load two downloadable expansions into it. and there are better orchestral sounds on some of those. The FA is another where non-hammer 76 and 61 key versions are also available at lower price, with less satisfactory piano playability. Roland also offers the less expensive Juno DS88 (and 76 and 61). I think its piano is another step down (though that can be subjective) and you can only load one of the expansions instead of two, which will limit the selection of higher quality orchestral sounds available to you at any one time, though it does add a small amount of memory into which you can load your own sampled instruments, which may make up for that.

Lastly, I'd put the Korg Krome, followed by the Korg Kross. I haven't played the Krome personally, but in general, I have not found the orchestral instruments in most Korg workstations to be among my favorites (though I never played with EQ on them as Biggles suggested). Biggles mentioned the Korg arrangers (like the PA700/PA1000), which I think actually sound quite good on orchestral instruments, but they limit you to 61 keys which, as I said, is limiting for piano, which is one of your main needs.

Here's an alternate approach... a pair of boards. You could start with one of the cheaper-than-88 61s focussing on the orchestral instruments (Korg PA700, MODX6, FA06, DS61/XPS30), with the idea of adding a 7x or 88 for better piano playability in the future. Choose a second board with a standard 5-pin DIN MIDI Out jack, and you will even be able to use it to play the sounds in your 61, if you'd like. That could be especially nice if you choose a piano board that also gives you aftertouch, though in the lower price range, that will limit you to either soundless controllers (like the Studiologic SL73) and/or non-hammer actions (like the Numa Compact 2/2x... though as non-hammer actions go, that is one of the better piano actions).
 
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First thoughts are a Roland XPS30 which should retail @ c 61000 rupee or $850 USD.

This is the Asian version of the Juno DS which I have played and Happyrat (Gary) actually has. It is a great sounding keyboard in all areas with its one limitation being the onboard sequencer.

The Korg Kross 2, Korg Krome Ex, Yamaha MODX and Roland FA are also within the ball park.

Yamaha have the best piano sounds very closely followed by Roland, but Yamaha Brass especially is very bright and harsh to my ears. Korg are all very good but rich and mellow and in need of Eq adjustments to get them just right. So imo overall Roland sounds are the best straight out of the box.

With the above you will need either powered speakers (presonus Eris 5) or an amp (Vox VX50KB) so do factor these into your budget.

Now an arranger could also be under consideration, with a Korg Pa700 and Yamaha SX700 the main ones to consider.

I am biased since I had one but the Korg will provide the sound quality you seek and the multi track onboard sequencer will be a major benefit in song creation.

Plus with an arranger you will have a portable all in one unit which has onboard amp and speakers.
thanks for your suggestion, i have already have the amp/speakers(presonus Eris) in my list.
i am considering FA06 coz thats an overall good going stuff and in my budget as well.
PC4 and SP6 is actually good as well. but there are no service center nearby.(also a little pricey.)
 
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There are a lot of excellent video tutorials on the Roland Channel that have helped me learn about the Menu systems and operation on the FA which is the model that I have been researching prior to me buying one.

Do note that with the FA the keybed is different in each of the three models, I have only played the FA 07 which is semi weighted.


Adding to Scott’s excellent advice, a Roland Juno DS/XPS30 61 keys plus a Roland FP30 or Yamaha P125 should be pretty much on budget. I have played both the FP30 and the P125 with it being a close call between them, the Yamaha has slightly better acoustic piano sounds but imo an inferior keybed compared to the Roland, with the other onboard sounds the Roland is better.

Good luck making your final choice.
 
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There are a lot of excellent video tutorials on the Roland Channel that have helped me learn about the Menu systems and operation on the FA which is the model that I have been researching prior to me buying one.

Do note that with the FA the keybed is different in each of the three models, I have only played the FA 07 which is semi weighted.


Adding to Scott’s excellent advice, a Roland Juno DS/XPS30 61 keys plus a Roland FP30 or Yamaha P125 should be pretty much on budget. I have played both the FP30 and the P125 with it being a close call between them, the Yamaha has slightly better acoustic piano sounds but imo an inferior keybed compared to the Roland, with the other onboard sounds the Roland is better.

Good luck making your final choice.
Thank you so much Biggles,
I am still considering FA series as i am looking over the tones and a workstation that's quite versatile.
I was also considering scott's advice but digital piano wont give the functionality when i compare with the workstations.
 
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I was also considering scott's advice but digital piano wont give the functionality when i compare with the workstations.
I didn't actually suggest any digital pianos... well, SP6, I guess, but it's really still a lot more than a DP. But if you need a full workstation sequencer setup, the SP6 won't do, and neither with the MODX or Juno DS. So that leaves the PC4, FA, Krome, and Kross. I'd say PC4 has the most features, but FA is probably easiest.
 
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Out of interest, do you have an option of going to a well stocked Music Instrument Store to play a variety of keyboards before you decide?

If so I would be interested to read if you have the chance of playing any Kursweil.

The reason I ask is that the members here frequently suggest a Kursweil but here in the UK they are very rare with only two being seen by myself, a digital piano and a controller, neither was available to play but the keybeds on both did feel pretty good.
 

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