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#154520 - 12/12/00 07:40 AM I have a GEM WK8 and want 88keys keyboard. Which one do I buy?
Steel Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/17/00
Posts: 5
Loc: Belgium
Hi, I have a GEM WK8 arranger keyboard. I really love it. I'm planning to buy a 88keys (weighted) keyboard with very good piano sound (the piano sound is not very good on my GEM). I want a this second keyboard also to be the controller keyboard for my GEM, so that I can play on the weighted keys and keep using the styles/sounds/functionality of my GEM.
1) is this possible (I'm not a midi-specialist)
2) what second keyboard would you recommand? The Yamaha P80, S80, the Roland A90EX, the Roland VX-88, the Roland RD600 or RD 100,...?

Please help my, because I'm not familiar with master/controller/keyboards or synthesizers...

Thanks a lot for your Advice!

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#154521 - 12/12/00 07:57 AM Re: I have a GEM WK8 and want 88keys keyboard. Which one do I buy?
Paul Ip Offline
Member

Registered: 11/26/99
Posts: 241
Loc: Austin, Texas, U.S.A.
For a budget of not more than US$1,500 - Yamaha S80, you can add 2 synth expansion boards later. It has decent piano sounds plus good master controller features.

For a budget of not more than US$2,600 - Roland XV-88, you get very good piano and synth sounds plus expansion capability from Roland's huge sound board library.

I am not familiar with GEM's RealPiano Pro2, so no comments on it. It looks very promising on specifications if you focus on piano sounds mainly.

Paul Ip
from Texas

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#154522 - 12/12/00 08:40 AM Re: I have a GEM WK8 and want 88keys keyboard. Which one do I buy?
Steel Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/17/00
Posts: 5
Loc: Belgium
Thx!

Anyone else who wants to share his experience in combining an arranger keyboard and a controller keyboard/synthesizer?

And what about the Roland A90EX?

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#154523 - 12/12/00 09:26 AM Re: I have a GEM WK8 and want 88keys keyboard. Which one do I buy?
Ilija Petkovski Offline
Member

Registered: 06/04/00
Posts: 193
Loc: Apeldoorn
Well of course the MIDI is no problem, but indeed I wanted to say the A90EX is very good, but you need to FEEL it.
This is the most useless question on this forum, cause the PIANO sound and the FEEL of the keys is too individual. Someone likes the pianos of Technics, someone of Roland etc. And all brands have different keys, so check them all out.

The technical side is NO problem. You will be able to do what you intended.

Ilija

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#154524 - 12/12/00 10:47 AM Re: I have a GEM WK8 and want 88keys keyboard. Which one do I buy?
Steel Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/17/00
Posts: 5
Loc: Belgium
Of course I'm gonna try these keyboards first, but since I'm not familiar with midi, I first wanted to know if I can combine these two keyboards. For example, can I play the piano on the A90EX (the Roland sound in this case) on the right part, while on the left part, I play the chords that will control the styles on my GEM?
I know I have to hear and feel it myself, but is someone willing to give his opinion about the sound and feeling of some controller/master keyboards or synthesizers?

I'm still interested, so for me, my question isn't useless at all...

Thanks!

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#154525 - 12/12/00 11:08 AM Re: I have a GEM WK8 and want 88keys keyboard. Which one do I buy?
Clif Anderson Offline
Member

Registered: 02/17/00
Posts: 532
Hi Steel

As Ilija and Paul have said, you can do what you want, including splitting your controller so that the accompaniment plays on the left and the piano on the right.

Of course, its all subjective. But I would buy the XV-88. If I wanted a good classical piano sound, I would add the XV piano card, which I think is 64MB from one Piano. For more general-purpose piano sounds, I would add the JV session board. All the controllers you mentioned are excellent, but the Roland sound library makes the difference for me. (I have a Roland XV-5080).

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#154526 - 12/12/00 11:08 AM Re: I have a GEM WK8 and want 88keys keyboard. Which one do I buy?
Paul Ip Offline
Member

Registered: 11/26/99
Posts: 241
Loc: Austin, Texas, U.S.A.
Steel,

Your question is a valid one. Everybody has the first time in dealing with new stuff. You just have to make sure the transmit channel of your 88-key controller/synthesizer and the receive channel of your left hand (lower) of your arranger are set up with the same channel numbers to make things work as you desired. Most top-of-the-line arrangers have two sets of MIDI ins, usually one is for GM playback, and the other is for connection with external controller/keyboard (like in your case). You may have to look up your user's manual or MIDI setup screen of you keyboard to find out the details.

Roland A90EX is a decent controller, but with a little more dollars, the XV-88 gives you much more, newer and better (arguable for some people) sounds with tons of expansion possibilities. That's while I did not mention Roland A90EX at first since I think XV-88 has better value. As for keyboard action, I like Yamaha S80's better than Roland A90EX, Roland XV-88's action is in between (Roland's weighted action seem a little more sluggish - slower in response, than the Yamaha's, just my personal taste). Yamaha P-80's action is even better, but it lacks controllers features that you need in your setup.

Paul Ip
from Texas

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#154527 - 12/12/00 10:22 PM Re: I have a GEM WK8 and want 88keys keyboard. Which one do I buy?
George Kaye Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 11/24/99
Posts: 3295
Loc: Reseda, California USA
Steel,
In my music store I sell mostly S80's for those wanting a really good feeling controller with great midi features and very good sounds, all for a reasonable price. The generalmusic Pro 2 would not be a good choice for anything but as a piano because it lacks all the features a good controller should have. No pitch bender or mod wheels and no aftertouch on the keyboard. I also sell the Korg N1 and the Roland XV88 controller synths, but the S80 has the most bang for the buck in my opinion.
George Kaye
Kaye's Music Scene
_________________________
George Kaye
Kaye's Music Scene
Reseda, California
818-881-5566
www.kayesmusicscene.com

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