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Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? #2879557
08/14/19 12:13 PM
08/14/19 12:13 PM
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Upstate New York, USA
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newbert Offline OP
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I'm interested in getting an arranger keyboard to use for what I would call informal solo performing (ie - for small groups, nursing homes etc).

The features I'd like include (in no particular order) --

1. Lightweight/Portable
2. 73 - 76 Keys
3. Easy to operate
4. Allows me to play as a "one man band" using built-in rhythms, with a good variety of instruments, etc as accompaniment,
5. Built-in speakers. (So it's an "all-in-one" unit.)
6. Decent keyboard action.
7. Priced at $2500 max.

Does such a beast exist? I have my eye on the Korg Grandstage 73, but I'm not sure whether it meets #5 above and I know it does not meet #4. My Dexibell P3 is great, but does not meet requirement #4.

So can anyone recommend something for me that meets these requirements?

Thanks!


Bert
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Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2879577
08/14/19 01:48 PM
08/14/19 01:48 PM
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Melville Saskatchewan
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FrankCox Offline
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I know nothing about this at all, but Costco sells the Yamaha PSR-S670 Arranger Workstation Keyboard for a fairly reasonable price. Perhaps it would be worth looking at that one.


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We got both kinds of music: Country and Western!
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Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2879588
08/14/19 03:06 PM
08/14/19 03:06 PM
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Virginia, USA
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Kbeaumont Offline
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The 73 - 76 keys are the biggest drawback here, on board speakers is a bit limiting too. Most of the really good ones are way above that price.
If by decent action you mean hammer, I know of none that isn't 88 keys.
Casio makes a pretty decent arranger that checks all your requirements and is very reasonably priced. https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/WK7600--casio-wk-7600-76-key-portable-arranger

Another possibility is this Yamaha https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/PSREW410--yamaha-psr-ew410-76-key-portable-keyboard

Sixty one or 88 keys opens up a lot more options.

UPDATE: Another possibility is use a module with your dexibell. I have a Roland BK7-m arranger module, that I will never part with because its great for composing song ideas.
I see them on e-bay all the times, since Roland stopped making them. https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/BK7m--roland-bk-7m-arranger-module


Last edited by Kbeaumont; 08/14/19 03:14 PM.

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Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2879591
08/14/19 03:16 PM
08/14/19 03:16 PM
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anotherscott Online content
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Grandstage does not meet #4 or #5

7x key arrangers with speakers are rare. The only one that comes to mind that could be a possibility is a used Tyros 5, but I think you'd have to be very lucky to find one at $2500.

Look at Korg PA1000 for 61 keys or Korg Havian 30 for 88 keys (discontinued but still findable). The PA1000 is the more capable of the two, if you can live with the 61.

Also in 61s, Yamaha is coming out with some new models, PSR-SX700 and SX900, but they're not shipping yet. You could look at their predecessors, PSR-S775 and S975.

But if you need more than 61, the Havian30 might be your best bet.

Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2879618
08/14/19 04:54 PM
08/14/19 04:54 PM
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Upstate New York, USA
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newbert Offline OP
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I'm surprised to learn that the best choices seem to be 61 key or 88 key arrangers. But it is what it is, I guess.

So, I guess I'll change my preferred form-factor to 61 keys then, due to the requirement of lightweight and compact size. I just checked thru much of my sheet music and 99% can be played on 61 keys - the exceptions being a few pieces which require an occasional low Bb. (Missed by only 1 whole-step! smile )

I have one in mind, but don't want to prejudice any responses - yet.

So any thoughts on a good 61 key arranger would be appreciated!

Thanks for the responses so far!


Bert
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Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2879694
08/15/19 01:00 AM
08/15/19 01:00 AM
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newbert Offline OP
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Based upon the info in this thread, my further online research has narrowed my search down to either the Korg PA1000 or the Yamaha PSR S975.

I'd appreciate any comments about positive or negative experiences with either of these - especially in regard to the keyboard action. Is one significantly better than the other? And does either come with a sustain pedal? (If not, I assume that both support sustain pedal functionality, right?

Any thoughts about either would be appreciated!


Bert
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Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2879707
08/15/19 03:18 AM
08/15/19 03:18 AM
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Finland
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clothearednincompo Offline
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Originally Posted by newbert
My Dexibell P3 is great, but does not meet requirement #4.


You could augment it with an iDevice (phone/pad/pod) and Dexibell's XMure app to get backing rhytms.

Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2879818
08/15/19 07:20 AM
08/15/19 07:20 AM
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anotherscott Online content
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Originally Posted by newbert
Based upon the info in this thread, my further online research has narrowed my search down to either the Korg PA1000 or the Yamaha PSR S975.

Yes, if you're going with 61, I'd agree, those are your two best options, unless maybe you wait for the PSR-S975 replacement that is coming soon, in which case it would come down to a choice between the Korg and that one.

I have not played the Yamaha, so I can't compare the actions. But I chose the Korg for two reasons: (1) It has aftertouch, and (2) if you want to incorporate external sounds (say, from an iPhone/iPad), the MIDI capabilities of the Korg are better.

You can find a good discussion/comparison on these models at http://www.korgforums.com/forum/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=119238 - a lot of that thread is about the step-down models (PA700, PSR700/775), but the models you are talking about are covered as well, and most of the differences discussed in those step down models applies to the step-up models as well.

Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2879832
08/15/19 08:07 AM
08/15/19 08:07 AM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 1,470
Cheshire, United Kingdom
Doug M. Online content
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Cheshire, United Kingdom
Originally Posted by newbert
I'm interested in getting an arranger keyboard to use for what I would call informal solo performing (ie - for small groups, nursing homes etc).

The features I'd like include (in no particular order) --

1. Lightweight/Portable
2. 73 - 76 Keys
3. Easy to operate
4. Allows me to play as a "one man band" using built-in rhythms, with a good variety of instruments, etc as accompaniment,
5. Built-in speakers. (So it's an "all-in-one" unit.)
6. Decent keyboard action.
7. Priced at $2500 max.

Does such a beast exist? I have my eye on the Korg Grandstage 73, but I'm not sure whether it meets #5 above and I know it does not meet #4. My Dexibell P3 is great, but does not meet requirement #4.

So can anyone recommend something for me that meets these requirements?

Thanks!


For your budget of $2500 USD, a used Tyros 5 is your best bet as far as a 76 key arranger digital keyboard is concerned. The Korg Grand Stage isn't an arranger keyboard, it's a stage piano.
All arranger keyboards have non-weighted actions unfortunately.

There are arranger digital pianos e.g., Yamaha CVP series for cabinet design, and Korg Havian 30 / Yamaha DGX 660 for portable design. However, a used Tyros 4 or 5 is going to be way way above these instruments in terms of what it can do. BTW, most digital piano arrangers are 88 note.

A previous thread already discussed a weighted arranger digital piano: PW thread - arranger digital piano

The best weighted action alternatives to arranger pianos are workstations like the Korg Kronos (73 note version available); synths like the Yamaha Montage (76 notes); and DP stage pianos like the Roland RD800, Roland RD2000, Kurzweil Forte, Kawai MP7SE, Yamaha CP4 (i.e., all 88 notes but digital stage piano instruments that come with several hundred to thousands of patches). Be aware though: these are not arrangers --- arrangers tend to be quite complex to operate, as are workstations like the Kronos---there is a learning curve!

The Casio PX560M is quite a good simple digital piano with some arranger functionality---it is quite compact and light. Maybe look into this instrument.

Kind regards,

Doug.


Last edited by Doug M.; 08/15/19 08:07 AM.

Instruments: Current - Kawai MP7; Past - Yamaha PSR7000
Software: Sibelius 7; Neuratron Photoscore Pro 8
Stand: K&M 18953 Table-style Stage Piano Stand
Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2880134
08/16/19 07:35 AM
08/16/19 07:35 AM
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 1,361
Upstate New York, USA
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newbert Offline OP
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Thank you all for your thoughtful comments and suggestions. I've ordered a Yamaha PSR S775 which I expect to receive tomorrow.


Bert
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Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2880549
08/17/19 08:45 AM
08/17/19 08:45 AM
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 481
Bachus Offline
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Originally Posted by newbert
Thank you all for your thoughtful comments and suggestions. I've ordered a Yamaha PSR S775 which I expect to receive tomorrow.


Thats extremely bad timing, unless you t a ver sharp pice
Its ben replaced by thhe much more advanced psr-sx900 earlier this month

The new psr-sx has a Touchscreen, much of the Genos tech onboard, inluding a much better piano sample..
Its lighter and has a much improved keybed (the 975 keybed is flimsy at best, much to ligh)

Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2880558
08/17/19 09:32 AM
08/17/19 09:32 AM
Joined: Feb 2010
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anotherscott Online content
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PSR-SX700 and SX900 aren't shipping until October.

Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: anotherscott] #2880622
08/17/19 01:08 PM
08/17/19 01:08 PM
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 481
Bachus Offline
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Bachus  Offline
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Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 481
Originally Posted by anotherscott
PSR-SX700 and SX900 aren't shipping until October.


Sorry to hear, in south east Asia they are..
But seems indeed Europe is trailing..

Originally Posted by anotherscott
PSR-SX700 and SX900 aren't shipping until October.

Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: Bachus] #2880644
08/17/19 02:49 PM
08/17/19 02:49 PM
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Posts: 1,361
Upstate New York, USA
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newbert Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Bachus
Originally Posted by newbert
Thank you all for your thoughtful comments and suggestions. I've ordered a Yamaha PSR S775 which I expect to receive tomorrow.


Thats extremely bad timing, unless you t a ver sharp pice
Its ben replaced by thhe much more advanced psr-sx900 earlier this month

The new psr-sx has a Touchscreen, much of the Genos tech onboard, inluding a much better piano sample..
Its lighter and has a much improved keybed (the 975 keybed is flimsy at best, much to ligh)



Just received the 775 and I agree that the keyboard action could be better. Maybe the new models will be better in that regard, maybe they won't. Maybe the new models will be released in the US by October and maybe they won't.

I don't really care. I wanted something now because I hope to do a performance or two around Xmas and needed the practice time to learn all of the keyboard's functions. I expect that I'll be happy with it.


Bert
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Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2880692
08/17/19 05:08 PM
08/17/19 05:08 PM
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Richmond, BC, Canada
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Charles Cohen Offline
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Originally Posted by newbert

. . .
I don't really care. I wanted something now because I hope to do a performance or two around Xmas and needed the practice time to learn all of the keyboard's functions. I expect that I'll be happy with it.


Wise move, imho.

There was a member who spent about two years deciding which DP to buy. Time better spent practicing.


. Charles
---------------------------
PX-350 / microKorg XL+ / Pianoteq / Lounge Lizard / Korg Wavedrum / EV ZXA1 speaker
Re: Recommend a Portable Arranger Keyboard? [Re: newbert] #2881245
08/19/19 09:04 AM
08/19/19 09:04 AM
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Upstate New York, USA
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newbert Offline OP
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Sadly, I've changed my mind about the Yamaha and plan to return it for refund.

If interested why and what I plan to do instead see this thread..

Thanks everyone!


Bert
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