Synthesizer Keyboard - Weighted Keys?

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by donnyb, Feb 18, 2012.

  1. donnyb

    donnyb Member

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    Hi Members,

    I normally post guitar based threads, but need a bit of help here with a compact keyboard/synth selection.

    Our 6 member band needs a compact quality synth, must have fully weighted keys, to use mainly for occasional enhancements, (eg strings, sax section, percussion bits) and not as a dominant sound. We already have a Hammond and a full Roland elec piano piggybacked, big drum kit and all manner of guitars.

    Everything I have looked at on the web with weighted keys is too big (88 keys), and anything that is the right size, say 61 keys, is not fully weighted (our vocalist and our potential occasional synth player is only confident with fully weighted, being a traditional piano player for years).

    Can anyone point me in the right direction to see or just advise me what is available in the market?

    Regards to all,

    Don
     
  2. tim gueguen

    tim gueguen Member

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  3. AlexL

    AlexL Member

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    Why do you need a *synthesizer* with weighted keys?

    Weighted keys are best for piano - not for synth. Are you looking for a true synthesizer or a piano?

    Nord makes a 73 key Electro 3 with piano action you can look at. I have the standard Electro 3 73 with semi-weighted waterfall keys that is a good compromise for organ, synth, and piano. They make a 61 key version of that one.

    I personally hate playing synth lines on a fully weighted keyboard.

    - E.
     
  4. donnyb

    donnyb Member

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    OK thanks to both of you. I am not a keyboardist, and neither is the band member who is a good acoustic piano player, and thinks he needs fully weighted keys to play synth bits to his ability in a some of the repotoire. I will pass on your comments re the Nord and the Controller. It looks like he may have to put in the hard yards in the bedroom on a semi-weighted unit until he gets used to it.
     
  5. Dr. Tweedbucket

    Dr. Tweedbucket Deluxe model available !!!11

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    Yeah, you probably won't find weighted keys unless it's a full blown 88 key board. Most players can adapt pretty easy. It's no worse than playing different pianos, they each have their own feel.

    To be fair, some synths have absolutely no resistance at all, so some are better than others, but then you are looking at what features and patches come with them (unless he's going to midi all the patches in).

    :huh
     
  6. Rick N Boogie

    Rick N Boogie Member

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    +1 to these replies- most good synths have semi-weighted keys, and that's exactly what you want.
     
  7. eschoendorff

    eschoendorff Member

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    I have an M-Audio 88 key semi-weighted USB/MIDI controller that I really like. It's inexpensive and can run any PC/Mac synth programs you want.
     
  8. SteveO

    SteveO Member

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    Just about anything in the 61 key size is going to be semi-weighted. Most people who want fully-weighted keys are pianists, so they also want the full 88 on the board. The market reflects this trend, so you're basically in an "either/or" situation.

    I have a Yamaha MO6 with semi-weighted keys, and an Akai MPK88 with hammer action. I prefer the weighted keys of the Akai for most of the stuff I do, and have a bit of an adjustment period when switching to the semi-weighted keyboard, but it doesn't take long to get used to the lighter action once again. In fact, some things are easier to do on the Yamaha as it responds more quickly to fast things than the heavier keys tend to do.
     
  9. jcground

    jcground Member

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    Piling on what others have said.

    I grew up playing piano, but I have no trouble playing smaller semi-weighted synths. You have tons of synth and controller options that are 61-key semi-weighted. It's the totally unweighted keys that might give your keyboardist fits, and even those can work if you get used to them.

    I'd recommend playing a few to gauge the feel. There is a pretty wide variety in both fully-weighted and semi-weighted action, depending on who made the keyboard. I happen to love Roland's semi-weighted keys.
     
  10. Julia343

    Julia343 Member

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    He'll adapt pretty easily. I actually prefer semi-weighted these days to both non-weighted and full hammer weighted. But I hate the spring loaded keyboards. A good keyboard is going to cost some money.
     

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