Question re Korg styles auto-accompaniment and "workstation" keyboards


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I've read various helpful/informative posts here, while seeking to better understand the relative features/merit of Korg's Pa700 vs Pa1000, pondering selection of an "arranger" keyboard. But have not seen discussion/comparison wrt onboard sampling, multi-track audio recording or mixing (specifically rate and bit-depth, e.g. 44.1/48/96kHz, at 16 or 24 bits.)

Subsequently browsing Korg's website for "arranger" keyboards, again there's little info re onboard sampling/recording rate and bit-depth specs. However, Korg touts their recently announced Nautilus "workstation" model as offering 48kHz 24-bit audio recording. Among Nautilus "optimized for live performance" description/specs, Korg mentions drum tracks, and makes cryptic reference to "songs"-- but no "styles" auto-accompaniment capability comparable to "arranger" keyboards is cited. Yet Korg's much less costly "i3 Music Workstation" model is said to offer "styles" auto-accompaniment.

My question is: though descriptive terminology may differ, do "workstation" keyboards, and specifically the Nautilus, provide a feature/capability comparable to Korg Pa700/Pa1000 "styles" auto-accompaniment?

Thanks for your insight
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PA700 and PA1000 are extremely limited in their multritrack audio recording capability, to the point where I'd say basically, they don't have any. AFAIK, all you can do is overdub an audio track on top of your otherwise completed song, and save it as an MP3. As for multitrack, yeah, you could do the same operation again to overdub an additional track, but I think it's all immediately merged into an MP3. So there's no subsequent audio editing or rebalancing to be had. If you want a keyboard with multitrack audio recording with editing, punch-in, overdub, mix, etc., you'd look at the Kronos, and presumably the forthcoming Nautilus will be the same in this respect except for lacking as much real-time front panel control and to the other aspect you mentioned, the possible accompaniment options you can get from KARMA, but that is still not the same as what an arranger does.

For a demonstration of the PA700/PA1000 recording/sequencing, see
-- and the part that involves audio recording starts at 6:53.

Among Nautilus "optimized for live performance" description/specs, Korg mentions drum tracks, and makes cryptic reference to "songs"-- but no "styles" auto-accompaniment capability comparable to "arranger" keyboards is cited. Yet Korg's much less costly "i3 Music Workstation" model is said to offer "styles" auto-accompaniment.

My question is: though descriptive terminology may differ, do "workstation" keyboards, and specifically the Nautilus, provide a feature/capability comparable to Korg Pa700/Pa1000 "styles" auto-accompaniment?

In general, any board marketed as a workstation (without the word arranger) does not have arranger functions. Price has nothing to do with it. There are cheap and expensive workstations (e.g. Kross and Kronos), and there are cheap and expensive arrangers (e.g. i3 and Pa4X). Though it does get complicated because an arranger can still include many workstation features (you can see in that same video that PA700/PA1000 does have a multi-track sequencer of a kind similar to what you'll find in workstations), and a workstation may have a limited range of arranger-style features. After you watch that PA700 video, check this Krome video, which will show you (1) how much more versatile/controllable its sequencer is, (2) correspondingly, how much more complicated it can be to do some things, but also (3) the arranger-style features that it does have a small amount of.

I think those two videos provide a good handle on how to build up a complete song in an arranger vs. a workstation. (Though the Krome still doesn't do what you want, because it lacks the audio track recording that the Kronos has.)
 
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Welcome.

In answer to the question at the end of your post, No.

The Nautilus, whilst no doubt a very capable workstation it can be thought of as an expensive cut down version of a Kronos. It is priced on its release at about 15% more than it will be in just over a years time.

Here in the UK a Nautilus will be £1950, a PA1000 £1550 and a PA700 £950.

Hence these three keyboards are very different in their markets.

All Korg PA arrangers have 16 track MIDI recording capabilities, once all 16 tracks are recorded a single track can be overdubbed if needed and other DAW like actions can also be undertaken. Multiple editing activities can take place to the user requirements. The MIDI file can be saved and also exported as an audio file. The default when recording is MIDI and if direct recording to an MP3 is required then this has to ge selected.

I found the recording system on my PA to be vastly superior and easier than it was in my Korg Kross 2.

700 v 1000
The 1000 has Aftertouch, Vocoder plus more Styles, more instrument voices and a more powerful onboard speaker system plus slightly more user memory.

If you care to elaborate further on your requirements then we can advise you better.

PS
The Korg Video Manual tutorials are very similar are generally do not provide comparative info.

If you want to see a lot of videos on Korg PA arrangers then Korg UK have their Webinars available to watch on Crowdcast. Google Korg Crowdcast
 
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The Korg Video Manual tutorials are very similar are generally do not provide comparative info.

They do not provide comparative info in the videos, but there is plenty to compare between them. Viewing the two videos I linked to provides a good comparison of how one assembles a composition using the built-in assistants on one vs. how one assemebles a composition using the built-in assistants on the other.

p.s. -- you frequently mention that prices on the ne models will be cheaper in a year. If that's been your experience, that might be particular to your geography. Here in the U.S., I have seen no such pattern.
 
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Scott
It is certainly the case here in the UK.

Not just with Korg but with other Manufacturers.

PA4X is £3000 less than it was
PA700 was £1100, now £950
PA1000 was £1800 now £1550
Korg Kross 2 was £750, now less than £600
Yamaha Genos was £3600 went down to £3200 but now back up.
 
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Scott
It is certainly the case here in the UK.

Not just with Korg but with other Manufacturers.

PA4X is £3000 less than it was
PA700 was £1100, now £950
PA1000 was £1800 now £1550
Korg Kross 2 was £750, now less than £600
Yamaha Genos was £3600 now
 
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I'm not disputing your experience, I'm just saying it is not the case for everyone reading the board, e.g. those in the U.S.
 
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Thanks for the helpful, informative and quick responses. I suppose it's human nature to "want it all" and resist believing that simply may not be available.

While I'm a little surprised/disappointed that the highest quality onboard audio recording with Pa700 and Pa1000 models is 256kbps MP3, of course one can cable the board's audio-out to an external DAW or other device. However, I've not seen technical specs for the quality of that signal (i.e., S/N, distortion, etc); thus external recording to a professional standard might be pointless. Alternatively, exporting as a MIDI file entails other drawbacks.

> Here in the UK a Nautilus will be £1950, a PA1000 £1550
> and a PA700 £950.
> Hence these three keyboards are very different in their markets.

US pricing is notably different, with 61 key Nautilus (pre-order) less costly than the (61 key) Pa1000.

If only from now piqued curiosity, I should look at how the i3 Workstation model accomplishes its advertised combination of both "arranger" and "workstation" features.

While one can appropriately argue that
"price has nothing to do with it. There are cheap and expensive workstations (e.g. Kross and Kronos), and there are cheap and expensive arrangers (e.g. i3 and Pa4X)"
Surely the more costly models produce superior instrument sounds, to a higher technical standard, in addition to whatever expanded features. From Korg's i3 Workstation description, I had hoped the new Nautilus might offer a similar arranger-workstation synthesis, built to higher technical standards.

Thanks again for the illuminating remarks.
 
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If only from now piqued curiosity, I should look at how the i3 Workstation model accomplishes its advertised combination of both "arranger" and "workstation" features.

In general, arranger features means having automatically generated full backing tracks in a variety of styles, that automatically follow your playing, typically with some number of variations (i.e. for intro, ending, A/B sections). Workstation features means being able to lay down 16 tracks one (or more) at a time, with the ability to go back and edit, correct, punch-in, overdub, etc. These are essentially the minimum things that qualify for calling something an arranger or workstation. But arrangers often include workstation-style sequencer functions as well. There are still plenty of things that differentiate lower end and higher end models, among both kinds of boards

Surely the more costly models produce superior instrument sounds, to a higher technical standard, in addition to whatever expanded features. From Korg's i3 Workstation description, I had hoped the new Nautilus might offer a similar arranger-workstation synthesis, built to higher technical standards.

For that, you might look at a Pa4X. But I think one reason there is so little overlap is that the design teams are entirely different. The arrangers come out of Korg Italy, the workstations come out of Korg Japan. Same parent company, and some shared technologies, but a lot of completely different approaches as well. That said, I'm not sure where the i3 comes from. It's possible that it is an arranger that came out of Japan... which could also be consistent with the marketing decision to present it as much as a workstation as an arranger.
 
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But I think one reason there is so little overlap is that the design teams are entirely different. The arrangers come out of Korg Italy, the workstations come out of Korg Japan. Same parent company, and some shared technologies, but a lot of completely different approaches as well.

Interesting, that would explain an otherwise puzzling aspect to the situation. Still, one wonders why arranger-workstation synthesis designs, more advanced than the i3 Workstation, haven't emerged from market competition. Kurzweil has announced a new PC4 model I know little about, though superficially appearing quite heavily "workstation" oriented.
 
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one wonders why arranger-workstation synthesis designs, more advanced than the i3 Workstation, haven't emerged from market competition.
I'd hesitate to include "synthesis" as an i3 attribute, since I believe it has no sound editing capabilities. But there are plenty of "arranger-workstations" available that are more advanced than the i3... as I said, many (most? all?) arrangers include workstation-style sequencer functions... and Korg and Yamaha make a wide range of them. Sometimes something gets the name it does just because of how they decide to market it. The Casio PX-360/PX-560 "stage pianos" include a decent amount of "arranger-workstation" functionality too.
 
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Not sure how or why the i3 has come into the mix. It is a very basic entry level sort of hybrid keyboard. It does seem that Korg are doing things differently with their lower end keyboards (i3: XE, EK models) not being directly comparable to other manufacturers keyboards.

Now your “want it all” comment, sorry but there is not any “one model fits all” keyboard on the market. A compromise will have to occur, and at least a two keyboard solution will be required to provide the range of features and functions that you may desire.

IE
Korg PA4X & a Korg Kronos
Or
Yamaha Genos & a Montage

Note that there is no Roland pairing that will give the quality of the above.

The Fantom is great but what arrangers Roland produce do not come close to the best from Korg or Yamaha
 
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and at least a two keyboard solution will be required to provide the range of features and functions that you may desire.

IE
Korg PA4X & a Korg Kronos
Or
Yamaha Genos & a Montage

Note that there is no Roland pairing that will give the quality of the above.

The Fantom is great but what arrangers Roland produce do not come close to the best from Korg or Yamaha

I get the Korg pairing, but not really the Yamaha. Montage isn't quite a workstation, even with its updates, I don't think it has the full sequencer functions of its Motif XF predecessor, or Kronos. I'm also not sure Montage brings very much to the table for someone who owns a Genos... probably the biggest thing is sound editing. Jeff also mentioned "multi-track audio recording or mixing" so there is no good Yamaha solution there... nothing in Montage, and just (I believe) two mono tracks in Genos, which is something, but pretty minimal (though still more than you get in any Korg arranger). Roland used to do multi-track audio (Fantom G, Juno G), but I guess with the tools available today on computers (and even iPads), buliding multitrack audio into keyboards isn't much of a thing anymore. Now Roland talks about DAW integration instead.
 
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I get the Korg pairing, but not really the Yamaha. Montage isn't quite a workstation, even with its updates, I don't think it has the full sequencer functions of its Motif XF predecessor, or Kronos. I'm also not sure Montage brings very much to the table for someone who owns a Genos... probably the biggest thing is sound editing. Jeff also mentioned "multi-track audio recording or mixing" so there is no good Yamaha solution there... nothing in Montage, and just (I believe) two mono tracks in Genos, which is something, but pretty minimal (though still more than you get in any Korg arranger). Roland used to do multi-track audio (Fantom G, Juno G), but I guess with the tools available today on computers (and even iPads), buliding multitrack audio into keyboards isn't much of a thing anymore. Now Roland talks about DAW integration instead.
The Roland FA has 16 track recording but that is the limit of my knowledge.

Whilst I have played an FA for a few hours I never tried the recording.

A look at some of Ed Diaz’s tutorials on the Roland channel will give a better idea.

Kursweil PC4 ?
 
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The Roland FA has 16 track recording but that is the limit of my knowledge.

Whilst I have played an FA for a few hours I never tried the recording.

A look at some of Ed Diaz’s tutorials on the Roland channel will give a better idea.

Kursweil PC4 ?
There are tons of boards with 16 track recording, but not multitrack AUDIO recording. FA's 16 track recording is MIDI only, like most boards. (Including PC4.)
 
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This discussion thread has been helpful, to me anyway. Unfortunately, though a priori I thought it a reasonable hope/request-- what I was seeking, a moderately priced arranger-workstation hybrid with 48kHz 24-bit WAV audio recording, simply doesn't yet exist at any price. The Korg Pa700 or Pa1000 would be OK, if offering the Nautilus' 48kHz 24-bit WAV recording capability. Or conversely the Nautilus, if it included Pa700-like auto-accompaniment. But for whatever reason, not yet to be.
 
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You can use a PA700/1000 to generate your auto accompaniment, bring it into a computer (or maybe iPad?) based DAW, and add your WAV audio tracks there.
 
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Yes; however, as touched on earlier in this thread, from Korg Pa model specs (to the limited extent that such are provided) its audio recording capability is not to a professional standard. I.e., the highest quality Pa700/1000 audio is only (mixed down) 256kbps MP3 stereo. (Also, of course one seeks to avoid multiple, in principle needless transfers, etc.) Naively, I had thought/hoped that an auto-accompaniment feature might somehow be accomplished or added to the Nautilus; as, a priori, that seems as if it "should" be feasible. Though I despair, your insights have been instructive and helpful.
 
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I have no doubt that a Korg currently has the best recording capabilities within the Arranger market.

It is unfortunate that its MP3 from within a PA but there is no reason why you could not use the MIDI file in a DAW.

OK, now for a bit of speculation.

The best featured arranger on the market at present is the Korg PA4X which has been around for a few years now. In March 2019 v3 of the operating system was released and it is called Next.

The PA700 and PA1000 were both announced in mid 2017 with the 700 hitting the showrooms in September but it was Feb 2018 before the 1000 became available.

Neither the 700 or 1000 has had a major update to the OS to the same degree as the 4X had with its OS Next so an update is now overdue to these models. This is especially true as Yamaha released their SX models a while ago so Korg needs to play catch up to some degree.

What Korg did with OS Next was to open up features already within the keyboard to essentially refresh and update the 4X without major engineering actions.

It is expected that such an update to the 700 and 1000 will also referesh and update these models.

I have also watched live online webcasts where Korg staff have indicated an exciting year for Korg products.

2018/2020 saw quite a few new or refreshed Korg models so we are thinking Arrangers are due attention.

BTW
Korg Arrangers are a product of Korg Italy.
 
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You can use a PA700/1000 to generate your auto accompaniment, bring it into a computer (or maybe iPad?) based DAW, and add your WAV audio tracks there.
Yes; however, as touched on earlier in this thread, from Korg Pa model specs (to the limited extent that such are provided) its audio recording capability is not to a professional standard. I.e., the highest quality Pa700/1000 audio is only (mixed down) 256kbps MP3 stereo. (Also, of course one seeks to avoid multiple, in principle needless transfers, etc.)
Your concerns there (256k mp3, multiple transfers) are not relevant to my suggestion. You are correct that the PA audio recording is not of high standard, but in my scenario, you are not using it for the PA to record any audio whatsoever. You send the completed backing arrangement out from the PA to your DAW (which would come in at full uncomprerssed quality, not MP3), and then all the audio recording is added at high quality in your DAW, and also finally mixed in your DAW.
 

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