MIDI Keys

Kurzweil MIDIBoard v3.0

I’ve using this MIDI keyboard since Namco era and after leaving I purchased it from them with good price. In those days Kurzweil was still high end brand so this is equipped with very solid, wood keys. Many people says the touch and feeling is too light but my opinion is this is better than ‘anyway heavy weighted’ keys such as Roland A-80 and this is the reason why I’ve been using this for long years. Now basically when I would like to play ‘real acoustic piano style’ or to play seriously, I use this.

ROLI Seaboard RISE 49

The most interesting MIDI control which I purchased recently. Connecting with Mac/Win via Bluetooth/USB and using dedicated software called ‘Roli Dashboard’ and configure the settings, then the company’s virtual instruments called ‘Equator’ or Fxpansion’s ‘Strobe2’. Now in music instruments industry analog synthesizer and unique realtime playing devices like this is hot and Roli is one of the major player in them. I play not only Equator and Strobe 2 but play also Sample Modeling/SWAM’s horns/winds, modeling virtual instruments already supporting this. Recently I found out to combine This with TEControl’s USB breath control is unorthodox style but very good for me and I can play these and can get similar sound with real acoustic instruments.

Korg microKEY61

Actually the most frequently used MIDI keyboard for orchestral songs from composing to arrangement is this. In mini-key controls this has the best touch for me. 61 keys but it doesn’t occupy large space and is the best to use with Mac keyboard. Because of heavy usage once broken and I repaired it one time. The latest micro KEY2 has Bluetooth connection and foot pedal connector and seems better but now this is ok enough for me.

Korg nanoKEY Studio

Originally I purchased this for portable usage but the latency of this Bluetooth connection is not so serious when using virtual synthesizer and its X-Y pad can control Tracktion Biotek and Korg Wavestation so not only for portable but also for actual music production this is good to use. Key touch is like switch key but not so problematic like original nano KEY and simple phrase is not so difficult to play. I plan to use it more for the future music production.

Arturia SparkLE

Consists of Arturia’s virtual instruments and hardware control. Good for simple purpose like triggering some kind of the rhythm patterns but I have no idea more than that. The sound quality is good but maybe I don’t prefer this library’s ‘direction’. Probably I can find out favorite sound but it is much faster to trigger my library with Geist2. This kind of the device is difficult to use.

TEControl USB MIDI Breath and Bite Controller 2

I used Yamaha BC-3 for MIDI breath control but it was broken and not available any more and to use BC-3, always I need to power on SY99 on my system. This was big stress for me, so I purchased TEControl’s one which can connect with USB directly. This is called as MIDI breath control but more than that. With version 2 software, adding the features like biting control with mouth (bite), nodding neck (Nod), Tilting neck (Tilt) and 4 kinds of the control is possible. Configuring the attached software, then I can get very realistic play. Only one problem for me was Modulation (CC1)’s vibration is always same and even then it sounds unnatural. So I found out to combine it with Roli Seaboard Rise 49 I can get more natural and realistic play is possible.

iConnectivity iConnectMIDI4+

In the past I used so many Emagic and M-Audio’s MIDI interfaces but recently with higher version’s Mac OS, these equipments are no more available. So I asked one of my friends in Rock On Pro and purchased this. This is possible to use with iOS and via network it’s possible to use. Routing is very flexible. Too many configuration is possible for me so now I use this as simple MIDI interface possible to use with iOS.

Synthesizers

Moog Minimoog-D (Vintage)

This is vintage Minimoog Model-D. Not a reissue. As you see, the keyboard is not flat so needs to repair. Mainly I use this for analog synth bass and lead. I cannot control from DAW so basically I play this in realtime and record it on DAW and later on quantize the audio data. The condition was good so keyboard has problem but the sound is ‘Minimoog, as is’.

Oberheim OB-8

Oberheim’s former vintage analog synthesizer, OB-8. Unfortunately now broken and I cannot use this recently. The sound is vivid, transparent and gorgeous ‘Oberheim sound’. I hope to repair it and to use in the near future.

Roland Juno-6

Juno-106’s ‘No MIDI’ version. The correct explanation is to add LSB synchronization system with Juno-6 is Juno-60. To add MIDI is Juno-106. So this is also for realtime play only. The sound is really ‘Juno sound’ and Roland’s transparent DCO sound.

Korg ARP Odyssey (Rev.2)

Mini ARP Odyssey has Rev1, 2, 3, three coloring models through three generations and I purchased the final stock of Rev 2 coloring model. Still trying to learn how to use it. The sound itself is very familiar ‘Odyssey sound’ and I understand if I configure seriously I can get the sound what I want. Only one issue is probably the circuit is still new and sounding tight so such kind of the purpose may be good. I purchased SQ-1 at the same time and enjoying CV/Gate trigger with Odyssey. Now I have a little bit sympathy with Techno guys who use same patter sequence and changing the sound gradually.

Korg monologue

Recently Korg releases unique, gadget styled gear and I like these. But probably they manufacture only one time and if first lot will be out of stock, we cannot buy the new one. So before going out from the market, I got blue coloring monologue. The sound is like the latest analog synth and different from vintage synths I have or Korg Odyssey reissue sounding similar with original Odyssey. In opposite so the sound is different and if I can find out the way to use this, it will be very interesting. I need to learn and to try more.

Waldorf Blofeld Desktop

If I’m correct, this Blofeld Desktop is my first hardware, modeling synthesizer. I like Access Virus’ sound but it’s very expensive so I chose this because it’s cheaper and the sound is good. My impression is the sound is cool and not warm but interesting. I cannot create sound patch from the scratch but can find out favorite presets and the most interesting thing is this is digital synthesizer but via D/A converter recording with ProTools HDX sounds something different from virtual instruments. I’d like to use it more in the future.

 

Oberheim Matrix-1000 (117V U.S.仕様)

This is my first ‘analog’ synthesizer to buy when I was a university student. Until now, I’ve never sold it and always this was with me, and on many titles such as ‘Air Combat 22’ I used this DCO synthesizer module. I like this and OB-8, and I make sense that I love Oberheim sound. Honestly, I’d like to buy SEM 2-Voice and Xpander. The sound is dark DCO synth sound. I will keep on using it.

E-mu EIIIxp

Originally I shared this high-end sampler with my friend but recently I set it in audioworkshop with his approval. This is EIII with ’digital filter’. I use different unit in Namco as well as main sampler. Even listening to the sound now, very hi-fi, very good sound different from 12 bit EII’s awesome sound. I have many EIII library as CD-ROM and plan to use this great sound module again.

Roland D-70

This is my one of favorites digital synthesizer which I’ve been using since my university student era. Now my impression is the Roland’s first digital filter doesn’t work so good and good for sensitive pad without time based sound change. Now in the warehouse and I don’t use it but not sure when my boom or industry’s revival boom comes, so still I keep it on hand.

Yamaha SY-99

Another digital synthesizer which I’ve been using since my university student era. AWM2 (sample based) + FM hybrid synthesizer. In those days, I performed SY99+D70+Kurzweil K1000+M1000 in live or used these for song making. After joining Namco, for very long time I put it in my booth in Namco. Now in warehouse but before that I used it as ‘breath controller interface’.

Roland D-50

I purchased it with good price recently. So now I don’t need to buy D-05 as D-50’s reissue. To utilize this now is not so simple and I need ingenuity. It will take time so I will try in the future. The sound is ‘D-50’ as is.

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