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#194187 - 04/14/05 09:36 AM The "perfect" keyboard hardware
to the genesys Offline
Member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 1155
I wanted to throw this idea out there since we all have different needs on an arranger/workstation.

What if manufacturers were to make a “perfect” hardware keyboard. It must have excellent build and key feel, pitch bend and modulation, assignable sliders, nubs, and switches and, peddle jacks, a good display, multiple audio outputs and inputs and there must be buttons that can be used for arranger functions.

Then the user can choose what he or she wants on the keyboard by choosing from available software from the manufacturer that can be loaded on to the keyboard. So if you want styles and everything having to do with styles, you just buy that software. Remember that the keyboard would have been setup to accommodate arranger functions. If you want a vocal harmonizer then get the software for that.

The keyboard hardware should also come with slots that can accommodate sampling, and MP3 player and other features that may require a small additional hardware accessory.

So the user would only choose features that he or she would want. You don’t have to pay extra for things you don’t want. So I don’t have to pay for a vocal harmonizer if I don’t want it and another person would not have to pay for a sampler if they don’t want it.

Such a keyboard hardware would have to be in 3 different models, 61, 76 and 88 keys. Speakers should be easily attachable. It should have connectivity like MIDI, USB a hard drive (or maybe that can be optional). The USB drive should be able to handle direct connectivity to the computer, a CD and or DVD drive thumb drive.

The price for this Keyboard hardware should be very low as users have to also pay for the different software they desire.

Creating one of these would not mean that people would stop buying any later offerings of such a hardware keyboard. As technology increases and gets cheaper, more things can be added on the basic instrument. For example, and this is just one example, the amount of programs that would be able to run on the keyboard at the same time is something that can be increased in a new offering.

The basic keyboard hardware can come with sounds and any specialized sounds and be had by getting CD specifically with those sounds. The manufactures would have to decide if they want to make the keyboard hardware able to read third party applications (but may be the market would determine that)?
Keyboard manufacturers already have software in their keyboard; they just have every thing package on one instrument.

Another advantage of such a keyboard hardware is that it could have a sequencer if you want it and substantial sound editing if you want it all by getting the relevant software.

Naturally, the design of such a product would be critical to its success, but I know with forums like this one and different R and D techniques, manufacturers can figure it out at a low cost.
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#194188 - 04/14/05 03:01 PM Re: The "perfect" keyboard hardware
trident Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/22/04
Posts: 1457
Loc: Athens, Greece
Such a thing exists, although it is still a little complicated.

First link for the software, second link for the keys, add a laptop.
http://www.synthzone.com/ubbs/Forum37/HTML/010322.html
http://www.m-audio.com/products/en_us/Keystation88es-main.html

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#194189 - 04/14/05 05:35 PM Re: The "perfect" keyboard hardware
to the genesys Offline
Member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 1155
Quote:
Originally posted by trident:
Such a thing exists, although it is still a little complicated.

First link for the software, second link for the keys, add a laptop.
http://www.synthzone.com/ubbs/Forum37/HTML/010322.html
http://www.m-audio.com/products/en_us/Keystation88es-main.html


Yes that is definitely a viable solution, but the concept I am talking about would help those who don’t want to walk with a lap top, midi audio interface on a gig and trying to figure out how to get the controller keyboard, computer and software talking to each other seamlessly on a gig.

With the concept I am proposing, all you would have to carry on a gig is the hardware keyboard, a keyboard stand, a gig bag with your mic cables and pedals and your PA system.
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#194190 - 04/15/05 01:01 AM Re: The "perfect" keyboard hardware
trident Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/22/04
Posts: 1457
Loc: Athens, Greece
Hi to the genesys,
I didn't have gigs in mind when proposing the above, although I do understand that a musician must PLAY somwhere else than his living room.

I too like the ideas you described, and the first thing that came in my mind was a set of keys with a PC within, like some keyboards that get some attention lately like NEKO or others.

On the other hand, Frank Rosenthal says he has used his equipment live succesfully, and I think some blokes here carry a laptop around in their gigs also.

We are halfway there.

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#194191 - 04/15/05 03:40 AM Re: The "perfect" keyboard hardware
Sheriff Offline
Member

Registered: 02/18/05
Posts: 965
Loc: Frankfurt, Hessen, Germany
What you want to get is the same thing like the virtuality's 'freaks' want to get but in another case form. This is not really what I want to get. The little differences in hardware engineering that brought us so much varieties of sound abilities will be lost in future, I'm afraid.

We had have the choice between various hardwares - be it a light, medium or heavy weighted keyboard with 49, 61, 76 or 88 keys - be it a Korg, Kurzweil, Roland or Yamaha (or anything else) rack mounting system - be it a multi effect rack system from various manufacturers... there's a long list of systems with a more or less long history.

I really didn't miss anything but money to make my dreams come true...

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Greetings from Frankfurt (Germany),
Sheriff ;-)
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Greetings from Frankfurt (Germany),
Sheriff ;-)

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#194192 - 04/15/05 06:18 AM Re: The "perfect" keyboard hardware
Fran Carango Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 05/26/99
Posts: 9226
Loc: Levittown, Pa, USA
This and a laptop will do all you asked for..

http://www.m-audio.com/products/en_us/KeystationPro88-main.html

[This message has been edited by Fran Carango (edited 04-15-2005).]
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#194193 - 04/15/05 09:12 AM Re: The "perfect" keyboard hardware
Frank L. Rosenthal Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 03/18/00
Posts: 1008
trident, you are absolutely correct in that I have used my system for live performances - successfully. It sounds good and is reliable.

Fran the M-Audio 88 key board interests me and there are others as well, e.g., Oberheim, etc.

With your PC keyboard, midi controllers like Fran notes and a touch screen you can do everything very quickly - excellent for live performances.

I have in past posts shown links to others who use software based systems for live performances, one man bands or as one member of a band.

It can be done and provides a nice alternative to hardware based systems.

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#194194 - 04/15/05 11:44 AM Re: The "perfect" keyboard hardware
Sheriff Offline
Member

Registered: 02/18/05
Posts: 965
Loc: Frankfurt, Hessen, Germany
Quote:
Originally posted by Frank L. Rosenthal:
It can be done and provides a nice alternative to hardware based systems.

I do really understand the most musicians who won't use a PC especially if it is a laptop because the past has shown us that windows isn't stabil enough for simple programms like Word, Excel, complex graphic engineering or simple web applications.
What the hell should make me able to believe that windows works more stabil with sound software? It's no problem while working in studio - if the PC hangs then restart it. It's not what I want to experience every day but it's no problem. While working in live acts this would be a very high risk...

Otherwise if you're using a laptop then your batteries might be too weak for a big concert...

Cough on a PC and it is fumbling!!!


------------------
Greetings from Frankfurt (Germany),
Sheriff ;-)
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Greetings from Frankfurt (Germany),
Sheriff ;-)

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#194195 - 04/15/05 01:30 PM Re: The "perfect" keyboard hardware
Frank L. Rosenthal Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 03/18/00
Posts: 1008
Sheriff, I don't know which world you live in but I have no reliability problems at all with my music computer (regular Windows PC not a Laptop) - None!!! It is optimized for live performances and that's all it is used for. I do all editing, testing, etc. on my general purpose computer. Plus I have used my system for years without ever having it fail during a performance. There are others who use laptops for live performances (search flr2003 or flr2002 on this site): http://www.brucerichardsonmusic.com/ http://www.daviddas.com/index2.html http://www.northernsounds.com/forum/index.php?

So my computer is more reliable then any of the keyboards I have ever owned. Yamaha PSR9000, 9000 Pro, Korg i2, Roland G1000, Ketron X1 and many more.

You are not the only one that claims that a PC or Laptop is not reliable. The only thing I can think of is that the PC or Laptops were not fully optimized including the installation of quality software and hardware (sound cards, drivers ,etc.).

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#194196 - 04/15/05 02:44 PM Re: The "perfect" keyboard hardware
trident Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/22/04
Posts: 1457
Loc: Athens, Greece
Sheriff,
I have worked for more then 6 years as a sales/tech in a mom &pop computer shop, and I have never owned a computer that I built/set up myself, since 1991.
(Not that it is too difficult, everybody can do it, I just happen to have done it for my PC's and for hundreds of customers).

Frank said something that was almost hidden between the lines:

"....no reliability problems at all with my music computer..." and "...I do all editing, testing, etc. on my general purpose computer"

So he has 2 PC's.....One as a scretchpad for the internet, testing, installing various programs, all the sh*t work, and another that has a tested, proven and stable environment.

No wonder it doesn't crash. It won't crash, unless something hardware based like a PSU, CPU, HDD crashes. The odds for that are exactly the same as the odds for the tyros HDD to crash in the middle of a gig, or the SD1 PSU to fry in the second song during a wedding party.

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