Why so few piano midi sound modules?

General discussion about digital pianos

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jt7757
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Why so few piano midi sound modules?

Post by jt7757 » 18 Sep 2009, 20:04

I've been playing roland digital pianos for 10 years.

I don't understand why there are so few sound module boxes? I have a roland xv-2020 half rack module, but from what I've heard the roland srx expansion cards for piano are rubbish. The sonic cell is obscenely expensive.

My main instrument is the rd300sx because it's so portable. I don't understand why I can't buy the piano sound from the rd700sx or rd700gx in a simple midi box. Most of these sound modules cost almost as much as the keyboard, why so expensive? How hard can it be to take away all the keys and hardware, and just have a midi controlled sound box for gigging musicians to use on the stage.

I can't find any current models for piano sounds. Why not? Why is there no market here? You'd think there'd be loads of digital piano owners who still like the action of their keyboard, but who just want to upgrade the sound. Why is it so hard? Any tips?

Thanks

markymark
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Re: Why so few piano midi sound modules?

Post by markymark » 18 Sep 2009, 20:43

I know what you mean!

I am currently looking for other options for my church keyboard (a CP-300). I love the action and the piano sample is great but for moment when you want something with maybe three or four layers, this option is not available on the stage piano.

What do you need piano voices for? Is it for contemporary or classical stuff? Software pianos like Pianoteq or Akoustik are fairly common to name two but again, very refined for classical music in my opinion.

Kurzweil used to do a "micropiano" box but I think things have moved on and it is a redundant model. Even if you were able to track one down, the sounds may not be all that great. Other than that, I don't know of any other rack model that has only piano samples on it. You could look in the secondhand market for your motif racks or Kurzweil PC rack models. Problem is also that not too many brands actually make rack models or sound modules.

jt7757
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Re: Why so few piano midi sound modules?

Post by jt7757 » 18 Sep 2009, 23:30

It's actually for a little midi controller that I'm using to practice. It's absurd, but it's probably cheaper to buy a new yamaha and just have it sit on the floor, using it as a midi slave.

I can't imagine why you can't buy the equivalent of an rd300sx or a yamaha 'without the keys'.

markymark
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Re: Why so few piano midi sound modules?

Post by markymark » 19 Sep 2009, 02:06

Have you looked into things like the Yamaha MOTIF-RACK XS Tone Generator? This is one of the models I am seriously thinking about.

See here: http://www.chamberlainmusic.com/product ... IF-RACK-XS

Chamberlain for example are selling these for £965 which is less than the price of a P-150 but with a heck of a lot more sounds.

You may be able to find a MOTIF-RACK ES model second hand which would be cheaper still. Having said that, I am curious to see if Kurzweil go through with a PC3R rack model - they do have a PC2R which is still available secondhand now. Can't see it happening for a while but I am looking for something that will add variation to the Yamaha sound which I am happy with. Kurzweil do lots of other great e.pianos and pads to name a few.

I'm posting quite late now (2 am which is way past my bedtime!) so I'm not going to take the time now to do this but check for yourself if you get time. What you are looking for has different names depending on the manufacturer. Some call these sound modules, others call them tone generators and others call them rack models to mention three. These are the most common names having said that.

Here is a link to get you started and to give you an idea of the range of products I'm talking about: http://www.soundslive.co.uk/categories~ ... s~ID~7.asp

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