SYNTH ZONE
Visit The Bar For Casual Discussion
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 >
Topic Options
#176519 - 09/15/00 07:21 AM MZ-2000 - Casio's folly?
Jeff Ganaposki Offline
Member

Registered: 09/09/00
Posts: 31
Loc: Riverdale, GA USA
After looking at the spec sheet: http://www.casio-usa.com/musicalinstruments/product.cfm?section=32&product=1943&display=10&cid=3349

I started wondering if Casio was trying to compete against the high end PSR series.

Has anyone heard / played the MZ-2000?
Is it something to desire or denigrate?
_________________________
jetgraphics@yahoo.com

Top
#176520 - 09/15/00 12:39 PM Re: MZ-2000 - Casio's folly?
DannyUK Offline
Member

Registered: 12/09/99
Posts: 964
jeff,

i asked the same question a few months ago and it was written off by several people here as a keyboard that has good features but without the sounds/styles to match. aparently they are pretty average and in its price range the PSR740 blows it away in every category.

I also said it looked like a Yamaha clone as well, I thought it was a Yamaha product before I saw who it was made by !! but because of the bad reviews, i didnt even bother investigating it at my local dealers.

one for the scrap book i think...

DannyUK

Top
#176521 - 09/16/00 05:14 AM Re: MZ-2000 - Casio's folly?
Ilija Petkovski Offline
Member

Registered: 06/04/00
Posts: 193
Loc: Apeldoorn
Sorry but always follow your OWN opinion and go and listen to the Casio yourself. You should listen to people on this forum, but it is NOT a reason not to hear a machine with your OWN ears!!! That is in fact "not smart" .

The Casio is a BIG machine for a SMALL price.

Ilija

Top
#176522 - 09/16/00 01:12 PM Re: MZ-2000 - Casio's folly?
Jeff Ganaposki Offline
Member

Registered: 09/09/00
Posts: 31
Loc: Riverdale, GA USA
I agree that one must trust one's own ears & eyes. The problem is that no local dealers carry the model MZ-2000.
The web site demo was interesting - and I couldn't really judge the sounds as they were downloaded and played through my computer sound system. I was curious about "Zygotech Polynominal Interpolation". I couldn't find any reference to it on the 'net.
I have read some glowing reviews written by UK owners, and it may be a winner. Who knows? The next "got to have" may be a Y2K Casio.
_________________________
jetgraphics@yahoo.com

Top
#176523 - 09/17/00 08:39 AM Re: MZ-2000 - Casio's folly?
Jeff Ganaposki Offline
Member

Registered: 09/09/00
Posts: 31
Loc: Riverdale, GA USA
After A/B testing downloaded sounds of a Yamaha PSR-740 versus the Casio MZ-2000, the winner is PSR-740.

Though the sounds of the Casio MZ were better than the usual Casio bleeps, it is evident that the overall sound reminds one of a heavily compressed Muzak track or "easy listening FM radio".

There wasn't any dynamic punch to the Casio music. The Casio "electric guitar" sample was almost impressive, with the trick bends and cliches. But after listening to the Yamaha, it was apparent that the Casio was not in the same league.

Sigh...
_________________________
jetgraphics@yahoo.com

Top
#176524 - 09/23/00 12:26 PM Re: MZ-2000 - Casio's folly?
Jeff Ganaposki Offline
Member

Registered: 09/09/00
Posts: 31
Loc: Riverdale, GA USA
I went back and did another set of A/B comparisons of the Casio MZ-2000 versus other MP3 demoes.
I ran it against PSR-740, Kurzweil, GEM Equinox, and Darkstar.

After listening to the demoes at length, I have to re-evaluate my original conclusion.

First, many of the contrasting demoes were plain sounds, or amateur compositions. The Casio Demo was very polished and well arranged, almost too good. The first impression was that of a FM radio broadcast, and not of a home synth - which isn't bad, is it? Second, the well mixed signals may have been compressed before making the sound files. A live test must be made before making a decision. Third, the Casio Piano, though not as varied as other, more expensive units, was not bad - and in a live situation, it may be more than adequate for cutting through a mix. Fourth, the emulation of "real instruments" was not perfect, but it's not a Synclavier we're looking at.
Fifth, the drawbar organ wasn't bad at all, but didn't have the "noisy" embellishments that other synths produced - however that might be user selectable. The "rotating speaker" effect was persuasive. Sixth, after listening to the drum sounds, I noticed that the drum rolls didn't sound mechanical or phony - quite a feat. Seventh, the "Lead Guitar" demo had some pleasant surprises, not the least, pick noise, feedback squeals and dramatic pitch shifts ala whammy bar.

I would recommend the MZ-2000 if it was released far below the $1,799.99 list price.
It may not be able to compete with the "big boys" -but- if Casio can get below $899 street price, it would be a great deal - better than the PSR-740. It would be even better if the board had 76 keys.

zZounds is offering the MZ-2000 @ $1,079 (-40%).
_________________________
jetgraphics@yahoo.com

Top
#176525 - 09/23/00 02:38 PM Re: MZ-2000 - Casio's folly?
Clif Anderson Offline
Member

Registered: 02/17/00
Posts: 532
I looked at the Casio MZ-2000 today. I did not particularly care for the sound through the speakers. However, the features were impressive. Eight or nine sliders, pitch and mod wheels, aftertouch, jacks for two pedals and two foot switches. More style and sound categories than Yamaha, but no bank switching (as required by Roland and Korg). Graphic sound editing. The display controls are just like on a Yamaha PSR-9k. Not only is there autoaccompaniment, but there is also an arpeggiator. I am not tempted to buy one, but I do wish in some ways that might next Yamaha were more like this Casio.

Top
#176526 - 09/24/00 07:45 AM Re: MZ-2000 - Casio's folly?
Jeff Ganaposki Offline
Member

Registered: 09/09/00
Posts: 31
Loc: Riverdale, GA USA
Originally posted by Clif Anderson:
I looked at the Casio MZ-2000 today. I did not particularly care for the sound through the speakers
Did you try headphones? Just curious...

but no bank switching (as required by Roland and Korg)
With regard to the styles or with regard to MIDI?

but I do wish in some ways that might next Yamaha were more like this Casio.
Which ways? What features did you find desirable?
_________________________
jetgraphics@yahoo.com

Top
#176527 - 09/24/00 08:47 AM Re: MZ-2000 - Casio's folly?
Clif Anderson Offline
Member

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

You asked "Which ways? What features did you find desirable?".

I was impressed by the number of real-time controllers. It is easy to fatigue when listening to an arranger keyboard. The accompaniments are monotonous and the sounds are the same everytime you play them. Several arrangers allow you to layer sounds, but the layered sound can be monotonous too. However, if you can control the layer mix in real time, the sound is more interesting. You might also want to vary the volume of the accompaniment, as well as parts within the accompaniment. Having nine sliders and two foot pedals certainly facilitates this.

I do not know whether Casio's sliders and foot pedals transmit midi. I would hope they did, and so they would be useful for controlling an external sound module as well.

I use a Korg Wavestation with my PSR8000, synching the Wave sequences with the autoaccompaniment. I like the result. Unfortunately, not many synths have wavesequencing. However, I would like to explore combining an arpeggiator with autoaccompaniment to see if that makes the styles more interesting.

I did not play with graphic editing on the Casio, but I like the option of seeing waves graphically instead of just editing numbers.

Maybe another way to explain what I like about the Casio, is look at what I think will be the best arranger and see what it is missing. The PRS9000Pro will be the best arranger in my opinion when it arrives. If the early photos are at all accurate (obviously they got the keys wrong), it appears it will allow only one foot pedal, and has one pitch wheel and one modulation wheel. Even the Yamaha EX5 (the non-arranger synth with the same case as the PRO), had a second modulation wheet, a ribbon controller, and provided for two foot pedals. Real-time control is just too limited on this synth, especially when it gives you the options of adding VL or AN synths. These lacks are much more frustrating when you find the missing features on a "lowly" Casio.

To be even more specific, I can have three right hand layers or parts on my PSR8000. If I had two foot pedals, I could control the mix in two dimensions for a high degree of expressiveness. I will be able to do this soon because I am buying a separate foot controller, but this solution is kludgy. Casio provides the two foot pedal jacks on the arranger itself.

Hope this helps.

Top
#176528 - 09/26/00 10:09 AM Re: MZ-2000 - Casio's folly?
Jeff Ganaposki Offline
Member

Registered: 09/09/00
Posts: 31
Loc: Riverdale, GA USA
In answer to my question: "What features did you find desirable?".
[]number of real-time controllers. Having nine sliders and two foot pedals certainly facilitates this.
[]edit waves graphically.

If CASIO took our advice seriously, would we prefer more controllability (& thus utilize our MIDI equipment & computers) over better sound generation?

For those who wish to contact someone at CASIO who answers email: "Alstrom, Ed"
_________________________
jetgraphics@yahoo.com

Top
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 >

Moderator:  Admin 



Help keep Synth Zone Online