Author Topic: Is it still worth spending money on arranger keyboard anymore?- Personal opinion  (Read 381112 times)

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Offline valio7771

Hi all fellow keyboardists.

I thought sharing my opinion on the subject and see what you guys think.

I always find myself asking that same question, during the announcement for the launch of the next best "insert any Yamaha model/series" like the recent PSR-SX series.
Yes, undoubtedly there will always be people who would rather cash out for a keyboard that will do the job for them, until the next one comes out to offer some more 'bells and whistles' over the previous one....I was 'almost' that person for more than 20 years. I was happy with the quality of the sounds most of the time, so with the features of the particular keyboard that I was working with...but that has changed for me after a eye opening realization.

I have a friend that I knew for years who is an audio engineer working in his own studio, and we've been talking about instruments and sound over a glass of beer. I was complaining about how little upgrade I was getting from buying the 'next model' keyboard, and I've been talking hypothetically about how cool it would be if I could have a keyboard that had such and such features that would help me be more flexible on stage and be current in terms of sound for years to come, on which he replied something like: "You would never find such keyboard, but you can get fairly close to that if you are ready to change your mind about what you've been used to so far, make a step aside and think again what is actually the MOST important for you during live performance?"
I almost stopped using styles any more because I prefer to make my own MIDI's for the songs I play because I want to have fluidity and freedom to change the feel of the song instead of using only 4 variations of the style and repetitive arrangement that comes with it. So I changed the way I use my keyboard by just using it 80% of the time basically as a bulky and heavy MIDI player that already have fairly outdated sounds anyway (Tyros5), and wouldn't let me shape these sounds during live performance to big extend, nor I am able to change them with better ones in future. So he suggested I could buy a MIDI keyboard controller which would have enough keys, knobs, sliders, buttons...etc, and running the sounds from a laptop that instead of playing MIDI's, It would play the same tracks but in audio format so it's lighter on the CPU. The heaviest job for the laptop would be running few VST's which I would play live on the keys, and I would have all that control at my disposal. I can tweak basically everything to my heart's content without being limited by the keyboard itself in terms of sound and the control over it, not to mention the future-prooveness and quality of those sounds, comparing that to an arranger keyboard, the difference is like night and day. Add to that that most of the MIDI controllers are waaay less bulkier and are lighter than any arranger that you want to use in a professional manner. You can do your maths on how much you would need spend in order to cover your personal needs for software and hardware. I did mine, it came out very close but less than 4.000Ä if I want to have the cream of the cream VSTīs, new more powerful laptop(although my current one is very well up to the job) and fancy MIDI controller. With that investment I'm covered for life in terms of software and sounds, and can easily go for at least 5-6 years with that hardware if I'm not being too picky, or technology makes a giant leap in that direction, as it is very obvious that we are progressively getting more and more bang for our buck, unlike I personally get from the arranger keyboards.

So in conclusion, I think that probably any of my future investments going towards instruments, ain't gonna be into buying any other arranger keyboard anymore.
I hope you find this useful, and I wonder if there are others here that see themself going this direction too? Let me know that you think.

Yours,
Valentin
 
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Offline Sergey Kadyrov

This subject is in fact rather complicated, so any attempt to simplify it can make it even more complex. Nevertheless I will use this questionable method of analogy (which is not really a solid argument):

To me playing a keyboard is like driving a car. It's a process where you want to focus on driving and not to deal with anything else. Like in a car I have all the controls right at my fingers and they are designed according to their purposes, the same way I use my keyboard - which is in fact a computer which was designed according to its purpose.

In the same time it is true that even cars are more similar to each other than we're forced to believe - old ones and new ones, cheap ones and expensive ones as long as they are reasonably good.

I don't really see why it should be a dilemma. Arrangers like Yamaha PSR-S670 are both
powerful and reasonably priced and computers are even cheaper, so I see no reason not to enjoy both worlds.
 
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Offline travlin-easy

I agree with my friend, Sergey.

Gary 8)
Love Those Yammies...
 

Offline SeaGtGruff

I enjoy both worlds, although I hesitate to say "the best of both worlds" because I don't have the best keyboard instruments. :D

But I like having physical keyboard instruments that I can play without needing to connect them to a computer, even if they're just "entry-level" PSR-E/YPT arrangers and a "budget" MX synthesizer.

And I really like having several software synthesizers and other virtual instruments on my computer.

In fact, I've probably spent more on all of my software instruments than on my hardware instruments.

To me, one advantage of buying software instruments is that you don't need to spend as much money in one lump sum.

But you also need to buy a decent keyboard controller to play them with, unless you plan to just enter notes in a piano roll editor or click on the keys of a virtual keyboard. ;)
Michael Rideout
Current keyboards: Yamaha YPT-400, PSR-E433, PSR-E443, PSR-EW400, MX49 BK
Current controllers: M-Audio Axiom 61-II
Previous keyboards: Farfisa Matador 611; Casio CTK-710
 
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Offline Joe H

Valentin,

This is a really a complicated issue.  Everyone has different interests and needs.  I found that the S910 had shortcomings.  The S970 was an improvement... but it also has shortcomings... so I bought a Motif sound module to take up the slack. 

For me the SX900 is the keyboard that has what I need. I will probably upgrade one last time. It may very well may be the last arranger I purchase because I know what I want in an arranger keyboard. Having a Motif module complements the arranger and is an extension of my arranger.  I doubt I will ever get rid of it... or my hardware Peavey PC1600x MIDI controller. I've been at it for more than 28 years, so I know pretty much what I want and know what my limits are as far a playing ability and technical knowledge.  At 71 years, I don't want to go in a new direction... just tweak what I already know and am capable of.  For me its just a hobby which brings me enjoyment... nothing more.

So you see; the issue is very individual.  Your issues are not my issues and probably not others' issues either.

"To each his own"

Regards,

Joe H
« Last Edit: August 02, 2019, 01:15:51 AM by Joe H »
Music is the Universal Language!

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Tyros5Mad

  • Guest
A hardware and software mix is a great combination. It depends greatly on what exactly you want to achieve.

Some people just want to play - for themselves or for/with friends. In this case the hardware synth or arranger keyboard is probably the best choice.

However if you want to produce decent sounding music for consumption by other listeners or viewers perhaps online or via CD/DVD then just using your arranger keyboard and recording a song is not going to be the best quality.

This where software is a must have. Most if not all modern music - like it or not - is recorded with hardware in a studio and then polished up with software. The studio may be a professional one or just a home based one. It does not matter.

For me, going from playing in a band years ago to just playing for myself or with friends to now trying to produce non-professional but decent sounding cover songs for others to listen to, I find that the combination of my Genos keyboard and software is working well. I also love the learning process so I am always trying new things.

As someone said in this thread - "to each his/her own"

Regards,
Richard
 
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Offline mikf

Some people just want to play - for themselves or for/with friends. In this case the hardware synth or arranger keyboard is probably the best choice.
I think itís more than just Ďsome peopleí. While it is true that there are many performers using arrangers, and also that arrangers have had many features added over the years that have made them more attractive to music producers, I believe the vast majority of the market is still home players who just want to play. It may well be that for what he does, the OP sees better alternatives, and should pursue these, but he might represent a very small number of buyers of arrangers. For typical buyers a keyboard connected to all kinds of other equipment and software might be the polar opposite of what they want.
Mike
 
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Offline 3dc

After two months of market research as a future keyboard player (customer) I noticed that the "keyboard industry" is in fast transition to complete digital audio production pipeline either with or without computer help (workstation or synthesizer keyboards).

I was told by experts that the brand quietly leading this trend is CASIO.  :o ???
Yamaha is resisting this trend but new PSR-SX models shows us its just a question of time when they will have to merge and adjust all those confusing keyboards options or face severe market consequences. Both Roland and Korg are already adjusted for this market direction.

Many beginners these days buy midi keyboards but those who are past simple basics apparently buy feature packed digital pianos or workstations with tons of sounds. I heard that one from several professional keyboards dealers.

Let me point to you as they pointed to me to CASIO PX-560M digital piano with the cost of just 1100 EUR here in EU. That is the price of Yamaha PSR-SX700 not yet on the market. At this price point I can't find anything on the market that can match even remotely the PX-560 not even PSR-SX900. PX-560 make sense on so many level. You can use it for Classic 88 keys piano learning, serious digital music production, professional live performance ( 256 polyphony, 650 tones, 220 Rhythms, ... ), high resale value and finally extremely competitive price.

Apparently this digital piano and two versions of CASIO MX keyboards are in many markets sold out. I told to one of this keyboard dealers that digital piano is not the same as arranger workstation but to this he replied: "The market really doesn't care about official classification but customers do care what they get for their hard earned money and what they can do with the instrument.   

I was hoping that Yamaha would introduce PSR-SX600 and PSR-SX300 models to address properly customers who are like me but for now sadly nothing new or exciting from Yamaha but quite plenty from competition. 

Anyway this is my two cents on the subject as complete beginner and future customer.     
Yamaha PSR-E463

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
- Martin Luther King, Jr.
 

Offline frankmusik

Hi 3DC

All Keyboard companies have the problem of loosing future customers ...

All of them tried a lot.
Casio e.g. built every 5 years a new Generation of cool keys.. but if it is not sold as they want .. the kill it in 12 month and you get it for pennies ....

Casio did BIG things centuries ago with CZ-Series in Synth and MT Series on Keyboards.
Nowadays they invest in Digitalpiano also (since years the cooperation with Bechstein Pianos)  BUT.. don't look only on actual Keys, ask also the repair guys :-)  Not only Casio, but all loosing quality because of the cheap things they built ...

I am Shure Hardware will be build for ever, but NOT in all price categories like NOW ...

Next thing we loose is the good old MIDI socket :-)

greetings from Germany
frank .. on keys since... the 80s

Genos and Tyros /PSR Support in Germany - Europe with more than
230 keyboardscouts helping in D-AT-CH-NL at your home!
 

Tyros5Mad

  • Guest
I think itís more than just Ďsome peopleí. While it is true that there are many performers using arrangers, and also that arrangers have had many features added over the years that have made them more attractive to music producers, I believe the vast majority of the market is still home players who just want to play. It may well be that for what he does, the OP sees better alternatives, and should pursue these, but he might represent a very small number of buyers of arrangers. For typical buyers a keyboard connected to all kinds of other equipment and software might be the polar opposite of what they want.
Mike

@Mike,
You are probably right but recording artists working from a home studio has risen leaps and bounds. Here are some quotes I have come across.

"Home recording has been popular since the sixties, when equipment slowly started to become increasingly cheaper and more compact. At first, it was the first wave of rich and creative rock stars who jumped into the opportunity to set-up their own home studios. Today, you don't have to be filthy rich to afford a basic home recording setup, perhaps one with more versatility than most studios of the past - after all, even The Beatles' 'Sgt. Pepper' was recorded on just 4-tracks!"

"McCartney bought a farm in Campbeltown, Scotland, in 1966 and built his own studio there, where he recorded many songs which featured in his solo records, from his first 'McCartney' album on to later hits."

"Guitar legend Les Paul was much more than a great guitarist - he was a recording pioneer, who invented the double-tracking technique. So it's not surprising to know he also had a home studio!"

"Perhaps the most famous (or should we say infamous!) home recording sessions ever: The Rolling Stones' 'Exile On Main St.' album sessions. Keith Richards was living for a while in a villa in the south of France, Nellcote, and the band decided to turn his basement into a makeshift recording studio. The result was one of the greatest rock albums ever..."

If you look around at Soundcloud, Youtube and other music sites, the number of ordinary musicians making great music from humble home studios is huge.

Regards,
Richard

 

Offline mikf

Richard - everything you say is correct, but my point is that these people are not, and never were, the main buyers for arrangers. By about 100/1, people into music production use computers, midi keyboards, software and a variety of other specialist hardware.
In recent years the arrangers have added more and more features that allow people to do this stuff on an arranger, so some newer customers have started to buy arrangers with an eye on music production, but they are still not the mainstream reason people buy arrangers. Nor are arrangers the usually first choice for people into home music production. There are, and always were, horses for courses.
I actually think it possible we may see a reversal of this direction, because the recent arrangers may be getting too complicated for average buyers. The emphasis will go back on easy play, rather than music production, because there are better ways for that.   
Mike
 
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Offline valio7771

It's great to see your opinions on the subject.

I agree with JoeH that my case is not everyone's case, as I stated in the title of that thread.

3ds is absolutely right for what Casio is on the market for the budget keyboards.

RichardL makes a good point on the evolution of 'portable studios' (even though that takes us a bit off topic) that it's not entirely up to the 'size' of the studio, although you can give an absolute **** of a demo to be mixed&mastered in professional environment by professionals, throw bunch of money on them they want and you'll stand much more chance to make a hit, provided you also have a good producer too. The thing is that there can't be a fair comparison between how music trended in 60's-70's and now, because back then the music market wasn't even nearly as saturated as it is now.

Sergey Kadyrov-The analogy with cars is fairly close one, but I see it slightly differently. To me the difference between Tyros 5 and Genos in cars, is like having a car with steering wheel placed in the middle of the car while still having to sit on the left to drive it (Tyros5) and the next car model (Genos) that adds touchscreen on the dashboard, new pedals, gearstick, maybe have 10hp more, and the steering wheel now is ever so slightly moved a bit closer to the left but still is waay to far to call it a 'comfortable driving position'. Same rule applies to every next model update. I don't mind going through the hassle of building my own 'car' the way I'd like it to be, when I have have the meanings to do it....add to that it will be much higher quality, it will run longer, easy to upgrade individual parts, and is significantly cheaper to build. That's how I see it.

Valentin
 

Offline panos

Hi Valentin,
the main advantage of the arranger is the real time chord building of all the left part instruments.
So it is useful when you want to control what the...."band" or the "orchestra" will play next, without having to "build" the track note by note,section by section,instrument by instrument etc.
You just start playing immediately.

This could be also useful for composing or should I say better improvising?
You can hear the harmonies and the melodies at once and if they fit together and if they don't fit it takes a couple of seconds to play another combination of harmonies to see how they sound.

There is no restriction of just 4 parts that loop over and over again in a style.
You can use the registrations and you can build as many parts as you wish.

Yes I can have far more sounds with just the usage of a midi keyboard, neverthelles if I want to create a non ready made track, I have to build it in the first place as I wish and then I can play along with it.
Not that easy....
« Last Edit: August 02, 2019, 01:27:01 PM by panos »
 
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Offline erbis

Hi Panos ;D
   You are right in your speech, because many players are looking for an instrument that will allow you to instantly improvise on the basis of your chosen style and build chords in real time.
   I have Tyros 4 on which I create my improvised compositions and I can not imagine a better instrument.
For me, this arranger is perfect.
   It allows you to improve the style to a sufficient degree, has a lot of great sounds and allows you to record in real time WAV format.
   Greetings
   Erbis / Ryszard
A day without making music is a lost day :)
https://psrtutorial.com/perf/ryszard.html
 

Offline Robert van Weersch

I'd like to add another cause for the declining arranger market: less people play instruments. Whereas many of my friends played an instrument when I was 8, nowadays almost no kids play instruments anymore. In my childhood, we had flute/recorder lessons and musical theory in primary school and for a very low amount of money, you could get basic piano or guitar lessons. Nowadays our primary school stopped those lessons due to budgetary reasons. Many music schools have been closed or are in financial turmoil.

Some instruments suffer less from this because they're "cool" to play, like electric guitar. You see this reflected in websites who provide adds for bands and players. Many, many, many guitar players. No keyboard players, drummers, brass etc. Weirdly enough, intstruments like the accordeon are on a comeback, but that is probably because "Kryner" music is a hype around here.
No players, no instruments to sell.
---
Yamaha Tyros 5 76
Korg Liverpool (microArranger)
 
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Offline soundphase

There is no restriction of just 4 parts that loop over and over again in a style.

And I'm sure that in the near future, round-robin algorithms (like REVO-DRUMS) will be extended to all sounds.
Moreover, I bet the current SFF2 structure will evolve to allow greater diversity.
Styles will be more and more complex.
....

And, at the same time, music becomes more and more electronic with loops and samples ....
 

Offline ton37

The topic is about 'spending money' on something. (In this case keyboards). I agree with what @Joe H. writes "To each his own."  One can argue or judge about it or try to advise or to convince, but the fact remains that it is ultimately up to the individual to decide whether he spends any money, or much money, or (a lot) too much money on whatever he/she wants to buy for whatever  reason.
My best regards,
Ton
---------------------------
Former KB:Technics Sx-Kn7000, Tyros 5/76, Genos, S770, S975.
 

Offline 3dc

The topic is about 'spending money' on something. (In this case keyboards).

Allow me some perspective:

Yamaha HS 8 Bundle speakers for 555 EUR
Yamaha HS 8S Sub for 488 EUR
Steinberg Ultimate Cubase Recording Pack 798 EUR
Doepfer LMK4+ 88 GH 1499 EUR ( I am told this is Hans Zimmer prefered keyboard )
Total 3340 EUR

You have 882 EUR to spend for new PC workstation or if you have one you can buy Spectrasonics Omnisphere 2.6 with 64 GB of data (14.000 sounds, synthesizers, ....) for 500 EUR and spend 382 EUR for whatever before you reach Yamaha Genos XXL set at 4222 EUR. Yamaha Montage 8 is 3666 EUR but with no speakers.

And I am a complete beginner in music keyboards business.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2019, 05:23:42 PM by 3dc »
Yamaha PSR-E463

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
- Martin Luther King, Jr.
 

Offline panos

The truth is that except from the DAW you have to buy and learn how to use it, for each kind of instruments you have to buy a VST.

There are no Vst' s that have all the sounds.

For example let's say you have to buy Alicia keys for just piano sounds,or Miroslav Philharmonic 2 for wonderful Orchestra sounds,Omnisphere 2 for synthi sounds,several pug ins from Refx Nexus 2 for brilliant arpeggiated synthi sounds (better don't look up how much it costs),
something else for a Classic guitar sound,another one for electric guitar,another one for more "realistic" drumkits etc.

Of course you could also buy some Classic plug ins like FM8 or Native Instruments.

Or you could just buy a Yamaha PSX with sart!,live! etc voices and has the sounds of all kind of instruments.   
If it is wise to sell your psr to buy a new one and for what reason?
Well... how many of you bought a new car,or a new pc, or a new refrigerator,or a new TV,or a new smartphone just because the previous you had just broke down and you couldn't fix it?

My friend Valentin,
keep in mind that for many many of us, a musical instrument like an arranger, is not a "tool" for our "business" that we have to evaluate if it will add something to the profits of our business in long terms so we should invest to it or not.

We just like to make sound waves and invest to our pleasure and that's all :)

Offline Toril S

Well said, Panos. Yes, we like to make sound waves. I make melodies, and can instantly find instruments and styles for them in my keyboard, and hear how they sound, and change if they do not sound good. The Yamaha keyboards are so flexible, and they have so many options! Are they worth the money? Yes, every penny!!
Toril S

Genos, Tyros 5, PSR S975, PSR 2100
and PSR-47.
Former keyboards: PSR-S970.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLVwWdb36Yd3LMBjAnm6pTQ?view_as=subscriber



Toril's PSR Performer Page
 
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Offline mikf

You have to view  the arranger from the perspective of a musician. Not a technologist.
When you distill it all down, the basic reason people choose an arranger keyboard is because they provide voices, accompaniment and recording in an easy to use, pre packaged single neat entity that lets them play nice music. Itís a musical instrument, not a system,  a high tech one perhaps but still a musical instrument.
Yes there are other things people do with arrangers, but at the heart of the arranger market is the person who just wants to be able to play and record tunes.  They donít want a roomful of complex electronic gear they have to train on, set up, program and tweak, just to play Moonlight in Vermont. Just playing it is hard enough.
 Saving a few hundred dollars is irrelevant if it doesnít buy you what you want.

Mike
 
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Offline Toril S

Excactly, Mike :)
Toril S

Genos, Tyros 5, PSR S975, PSR 2100
and PSR-47.
Former keyboards: PSR-S970.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLVwWdb36Yd3LMBjAnm6pTQ?view_as=subscriber



Toril's PSR Performer Page
 

Offline valio7771

Allow me some perspective:

Yamaha HS 8 Bundle speakers for 555 EUR
Yamaha HS 8S Sub for 488 EUR
Steinberg Ultimate Cubase Recording Pack 798 EUR
Doepfer LMK4+ 88 GH 1499 EUR ( I am told this is Hans Zimmer prefered keyboard )
Total 3340 EUR

You have 882 EUR to spend for new PC workstation or if you have one you can buy Spectrasonics Omnisphere 2.6 with 64 GB of data (14.000 sounds, synthesizers, ....) for 500 EUR and spend 382 EUR for whatever before you reach Yamaha Genos XXL set at 4222 EUR. Yamaha Montage 8 is 3666 EUR but with no speakers.

And I am a complete beginner in music keyboards business.
This is exactly what I meant!
 

Offline valio7771

I see we're getting very fast off topic here.

People have started to argue/explain/convince others if an arranger keyboard is better than software synths, etc...there can't be such argument. These are two different concepts that exist to serve two totally different purposes. It's like comparing fast food with home made food....it doesn't make sense. Everyone has it's own preferences and habits, and chooses where to put his/her's money when it comes to what brings you more pleasure or you see convenient for your way of live, to consume a prepared food that you like the taste of it, or you just enjoy cooking and like to try new recipes and flavours every so often.
 
Please, read the title of this post, and what I've asked at the end of it.

Cheers

Valentin
 

Offline Joe H

Maybe you should ask a Moderator to lock this thread if it bothers you so much.

 ;)

Joe H
« Last Edit: August 03, 2019, 03:55:56 AM by Joe H »
Music is the Universal Language!

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Offline panos

"""Is it still worth spending money on arranger keyboard anymore?- Personal opinion"""

Sorry Valentine my answers were about the title of the thread and why I would still buy a new arranger instead of looking for other and "better" alternatives to play music that "maybe" would also save me money.


So in conclusion, I think that probably any of my future investments going towards instruments, ain't gonna be into buying any other arranger keyboard anymore.
I hope you find this useful, and I wonder if there are others here that see themself going this direction too? Let me know that you think.

Yours,
Valentin

My answer to your last question as you can understand is "No".
In fact I was in the opposite direction.
I first have got a free DAW and some free Vsts and used them to insert a midi song from a DGX-305 to make it sound better and then I preferred to spend money and to buy a psr S.

Offline mikf

I donít think this has gone way off topic at all. Your debating premise is that arrangers are no longer the best or most cost effective solution. As far as I can see all the replies are why people agree or disagree with that. Essentially that it may be true for some, but not for majority of arranger buyers. So I donít get your point?
Mike

Offline 3dc

I donít think this has gone way off topic at all. Your debating premise is that arrangers are no longer the best or most cost effective solution. As far as I can see all the replies are why people agree or disagree with that. Essentially that it may be true for some, but not for majority of arranger buyers. So I donít get your point?
Mike

The point is, as I see it and from what I learned in this two months, in what you actually get for your money compared to other options on the music market.

No one normal is against proper arrangers as such, they are indeed extremely powerful and wonderful instruments in the right hands, but the fact is with each new model they offer relatively small progress and content while asking more and more money. This is quite visible when compared to alternatives - even within other keyboards options and brands.

Now you could always argue in favor for arrangers with controlled small progress, carefully selected content and closed all in one platform benefits but from what I can read in this forum even that is not working as designed and promoted. This is not usually a problem for budget keyboards but it is for high end 2200 to 4222 EUR keyboards. Someone here implied quality factor but now that all instruments are built in China anyway and the production technology is more or less the same for all brands this is no more an issue.

The same goes in PC industry for comparison. You can't argue in favour of Intel Core I9 when you have an viable alternative in AMD for half price but twice as powerful

On top of that you have to consider beginners like me. There is an unnecessary confusion with all those keyboard options, families, more or less forced purposes and ridiculous price ranges. No wonder you can't find fresh people to learn and play regular keyboards.     

I know this is simplified generalization from a beginner point of view but I think it illustrate the point quite well.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2019, 09:41:48 AM by 3dc »
Yamaha PSR-E463

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
- Martin Luther King, Jr.
 

Offline mikf

Of course manufacturers offer changes and improvements with each new model. They have to do this to be competitive. And of course the changes are small because the technology is already mature.
But they don't do this so that people will continually upgrade from model to model as they appear. They know that doesn't happen. Don't be misled by all the interest in the new model you see on the forum. A very small percentage of arranger owners will actually upgrade keyboards that are only one or two generations old. It is usually not worth it for the reasons you state.  Manufacturers mainly upgrade to stay current in the market, and  so that the new buyers in the market will see them as a good option compared to the competition.
One of the common misunderstandings of the market is that the manufacturers need the present owners to constantly upgrade to sustain demand. When in fact a very big proportion of the demand comes from people who are buying an arranger for the first time, (like you ??), people who have a very old or much lower tech model and wish to step up a few notches, or those our whose current model just needs replaced because it is damaged or non functioning properly.
Mike
 
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Offline valio7771

I donít think this has gone way off topic at all. Your debating premise is that arrangers are no longer the best or most cost effective solution. As far as I can see all the replies are why people agree or disagree with that. Essentially that it may be true for some, but not for majority of arranger buyers. So I donít get your point?
Mike
No, Mike. I'm not debating arrangers are no longer good investment, full stop, I've said that they are not anymore FOR ME based on my personal experience in the last 20+ years, and now I've been 'presented' to another alternative, I have my thoughts on that. That's why I've put it in the title "Personal opinion".
I'm not trying to convince anyone to do as I do, because everyone has different needs from a keyboard, whether it would be used in home for fun or used professionaly. I was just curious to see if there are others here that may have similar view on the subject based on their requirement that may be some similar to mine or already have some experience on that (best case scenario), and ultimately to share some knowledge. That what my point was from the start...not to raise an argument, as it happen.

"""Is it still worth spending money on arranger keyboard anymore?- Personal opinion"""

Sorry Valentine my answers were about the title of the thread and why I would still buy a new arranger instead of looking for other and "better" alternatives to play music that "maybe" would also save me money.

My answer to your last question as you can understand is "No".
In fact I was in the opposite direction.
I first have got a free DAW and some free Vsts and used them to insert a midi song from a DGX-305 to make it sound better and then I preferred to spend money and to buy a psr S.
See, that's absolutely fine by me, that's exactly what I meant. You are happy with what an arranger keyboard has to offer for you, and that's absolutely OK  :)

Maybe you should ask a Moderator to lock this thread if it bothers you so much.
No man, it's OK, haha ;)
We started an argument on a thing where argument shouldn't exist. I just wanted people to focus on my question at the end of my 'rant' rather than just convincing me or others that replied on the thread, what's wrong or right.

The truth is that except from the DAW you have to buy and learn how to use it, for each kind of instruments you have to buy a VST.
There are no Vst' s that have all the sounds.
For example let's say you have to buy Alicia keys for just piano sounds,or Miroslav Philharmonic 2 for wonderful Orchestra sounds,Omnisphere 2 for synthi sounds,several pug ins from Refx Nexus 2 for brilliant arpeggiated synthi sounds (better don't look up how much it costs),
something else for a Classic guitar sound,another one for electric guitar,another one for more "realistic" drumkits etc.

Of course you could also buy some Classic plug ins like FM8 or Native Instruments.

Or you could just buy a Yamaha PSX with sart!,live! etc voices and has the sounds of all kind of instruments.   
If it is wise to sell your psr to buy a new one and for what reason?
Well... how many of you bought a new car,or a new pc, or a new refrigerator,or a new TV,or a new smartphone just because the previous you had just broke down and you couldn't fix it?

My friend Valentin,
keep in mind that for many many of us, a musical instrument like an arranger, is not a "tool" for our "business" that we have to evaluate if it will add something to the profits of our business in long terms so we should invest to it or not.
We just like to make sound waves and invest to our pleasure and that's all :)
You can't really say that there is no learning curve when you buy an arranger, as if you just power it on for the first time and start using it on 100% of it's capabilities. Everything takes time to learn how to use it, usually that learning curve is getting exponentially less and less steeper the more you use it.

To me it's not always having the most realistic Flute sound(as an example) in every single case. Sometimes I might like not to have that part played at all, or to be played by a totally different patch that would give that song slightly different feel/twist, the way I want it to sound.
 
Regarding what you wrote at the end...I'm absolutely fine about what everyone wants to invest or not. The thing is that I don't have to be like you, and you don't have to be like me.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2019, 12:47:50 PM by valio7771 »
 

Offline DerekA

I keep planning to sit down with the laptop connected up to the tyros and properly try out some new vst instruments. But then I find I've sat for an hour just playing with the inbuilt styles and voices.

So my point is that yes, no doubt you get a better bang for the buck using software. But for me, the simplicity of just sitting playing is still a lot of fun.
Genos
 
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Offline ugawoga

Genos and vst software will open the Universe for you :) 8)
 

Offline mikf

I have never really understood the fascination with Ďvoicesí. A nice voice ...ok .... but surely itís what you play on the instrument that really matters, as long as the voice is in tune, not distorted and has good tone.
Just my opinion.
Mike
 
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Offline DerekA

I think that sometimes the sound itself can provoke an emotional response, not just the tune it's playing.
Genos
 

Offline DrakeM

If you are not playing live with an arranger then everyone knows you are just playing Karaoke with an MP3 file or a midi file .. Right?

Offline Joe H

I have never really understood the fascination with Ďvoicesí. A nice voice ...ok .... but surely itís what you play on the instrument that really matters, as long as the voice is in tune, not distorted and has good tone.
Just my opinion.
Mike

It's a matter of what your interest is. What you play is ok, but what sounds that are used (arrangement) makes all the difference in the pleasure derived.  There are exceptions of coarse.  Some songs are so perfect, that no matter what instrument(s) is used, it is universally appealing and pleasing to all.



I think that sometimes the sound itself can provoke an emotional response, not just the tune it's playing.

Yamaha has always promoted the idea that a particular sound (Voice) can inspire a new song or tune.  I think that's true. Sound is everything.  You can listen to music through el cheapo monitor speakers (sounds like a 1965 transitor radio) or through a modern-day high fidelity stereo.  It's the same music; but sounds are much better on the stereo.

 ;)

Joe H
Music is the Universal Language!

My Article: Using Multi Pads in registrations. Download Regs, Styles & MPs:  http://psrtutorial.com/music/articles/dancemusic.html
 
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Offline mikf

I think that sometimes the sound itself can provoke an emotional response, not just the tune it's playing.
Maybe - but it's short lived. Kinda like visiting the Great Wall of China, you marvel at it for a few minutes, then you think ..now what?

Joe, I guess its just not my big interest, and I respect that it fascinates some people much more than me. But I also dont think it matters much to the general public. If I take a standard style on a decent arranger like a Genos and play 'Stardust' , they will probably think it sounds great. So then I edit and tweak every voice in that style to complete perfection, then play it again. Would anyone even notice?
But now Oscar Peterson comes in and plays stardust.... and I guarantee they will notice!

Mike
 

Offline panos

I wouldn't have spent a week of my free time to improvise "something" if there wasn't this style Mike.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2ziAcYHE9Y

I just liked the backing tracks and had some fun with it.
No sheet music to tell me what and how to play it, to sound correct. Yippee!!!!  ;D

Same goes with different kinds of sounds.
Like you mix notes and harmonies, the "mixing" of different sounds can give you "excitement".

There are some tunes that where finally successful because a different voice (singer) sang them anyway.

Also keep in mind that some of us appreciate a lot "synthesizer" sounds and music.

As for the general public,I don't like what they like in music and they don't like what I like,so everything is fine :)

Offline Joe H

... As for the general public,I don't like what they like in music and they don't like what I like,so everything is fine :)

Amen to that!

 :)   :)   :)

Joe H
Music is the Universal Language!

My Article: Using Multi Pads in registrations. Download Regs, Styles & MPs:  http://psrtutorial.com/music/articles/dancemusic.html
 

Offline mikf

Panos - well entertaining ourselves creating sounds is fine. But for myself, all the greatest times I had as a musician, and all the best memories, involve some kind of an audience, or other musicians. I would think that is true for most musicians. Do you think Beethoven wrote without caring if anyone else ever heard it, or liked it, or Pavarotti honed his voice so he could sing in the shower?
 I agree with Joe that things sound better on a decent sound system - when you compare the sublime to the mediocre. But my point is that there is a law of diminishing returns. Once they sound really good, sounding a little better gets to mean less and less. I think that is already generally the case with the modern TOTL keyboards, you can add convenience features, you can make them sound a tiny bit better, - all nice for the player or enthusiast, but its not a groundbreaking difference to the average audience any more. And it's almost as nothing compared to the quality of the playing or singing, which pretty much everyone notices instantly.         
Mike 

Offline Joe H

Mike,

It sounds like you do not understand that for MOST of the forum members here (several thousand), playing our arrangers is just a hobby. We are NOT entertainers per se... maybe we just like to entertain ourselves by playing at home.  ;D

For me (I am more of a technical guy than musician) I like the challenge of creating new styles and Multi Pads and programming and creating remote access to my MIDI equipment (just like some programmers get a kick out of writing code to make things happen)

It's a different kind of creativity than just playing music.  I really enjoy my hobby immensely.   8)

 :)

Joe H
« Last Edit: August 30, 2019, 11:07:49 PM by Joe H »
Music is the Universal Language!

My Article: Using Multi Pads in registrations. Download Regs, Styles & MPs:  http://psrtutorial.com/music/articles/dancemusic.html
 

Offline panos

I am not against talented keyboard playing of course!
I wish i could play good and fast piano!!
But as long as I am not good, I just play music for my own pleasure.
I don't have an audience when I sit on my keyboard to care about if it likes the song or my playing.
If I were a professional I would have played what the audience wanted to hear of course.
(and at home for my pleasure the music I wanted to hear, I guess  ;D)

Beethoven liked the sounds of the nature at his walks in the woods.
I just wanted to indicate why some people give that importance also to the quality of the "sounds".
Keep in mind that we may like electronic music because we like how it sounds.
It doesn't mean that we don't mind about a good playing and we just care about the sound.
Many times our playing is too limited.Our hands just won't follow any more "orders" no matter how hard we try.
So why not improving at least how we can sound better with a new model or by using other methods too if we can?
We are not trying to "fool" or impress an audience.We just want to have fun in our free time.

Offline mikf

 I fully understand that Joe. I myself have not played as a pro for many, many years. And I get it that for some people the core of the hobby might be playing around with technical things like editing styles, voices etc. That is their choice and what they should do.
But for many members and arranger owners the heart of the hobby would actually be playing music, not playing with the technology. They prefer to just switch on and play, without getting too deeply into the guts of what makes the sound. I know I do. And I believe the modern arranger does largely deliver on that for many.
Mike
 

Offline Bachus

If you like playing arrangers, buy one, and enjoy it..
Keyszone.boards.net for all the latest keyboard news and information.
 

Offline Toril S

And we all did that, and have a lot of fun😀
Toril S

Genos, Tyros 5, PSR S975, PSR 2100
and PSR-47.
Former keyboards: PSR-S970.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLVwWdb36Yd3LMBjAnm6pTQ?view_as=subscriber



Toril's PSR Performer Page
 

Offline Bachus

And we all did that, and have a lot of fun😀

Money well spend i would say
Keyszone.boards.net for all the latest keyboard news and information.
 

Offline rikkisbears

Hi,
Of course it is, if it makes us happy and we can afford it , why not.
Only a hobbyist.
Not everyone has the same needs. If you just want to sit down and play, or buy it to tweak it ( if youíre a bit of techie). Great. You canít beat an arranger keyboard.

If someone just wants backing tracks or creating songs,  and not necessarily playing it live, of course thereís other options to buying an arranger keyboard.
Band in a Box, 
software real-time arrangers, like VArranger.
DAWS, vsts.

Basically to each ,their own.
Best wishes
Rikki

SX 900
VArranger & Ketron Sd2
Band in a Box 2020
 

Offline valio7771

Apologies to bring up an old post back up, but I wanted to share a short piece of music that I've created in just a few hours of playing around with some VST's. Really looking forward for the time when Yamaha workstations would sound like that for only about 300-ish euro. That's how much I've spent in total for some hardware and software so far, in order to create that sound, and that's just the tip of the iceberg compared to what's out there at my disposal. Enjoy.

Cheers!

Valentin

Online hans1966

Hi Valentin, beautiful piece of music. Thanks for sharing. Regards. Hans
 
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Offline ekurburski

Nice sound.  I for one appreciate the us of vsts.  It greatly expands the pallate of sounds available.  Much like a painter with a full assortment of colors and hues vs one with a basic set of 8 colors.
PSR740, PSR3000, tx7, mt32, mirage, ProTiools 10,11 Sonar,  Reaper, BIAB2019