Casio Launches PX-130 and PX-330
(ShackMan | Posted 2009-11-23)
Mike Martin, Director of Marketing, Electronic Musical Instruments Division notes “When developing new instruments, Casio aims to create innovative
technologies ahead of our competition. As the newest additions to the
Privia line, the PX-130 and PX-330 encompass Casio’s latest sound
technologies providing musicians with an instrument featuring
unmatched performance capabilities”
Being a pianist, I feel a little anxious checking this piece of gear out. Casio has been making leaps and bounds right along with Roland in digital piano technology, although without as large of a reputation. Whereas Roland generally sticks to musical instruments, amplification, and the BOSS line of pedals, Casio hovers around the other side of electronics: cameras, watches, phones, point-of-sale systems, and the like, so we have two companies coming from two very different angles both aimed at producing a quality digital piano. Feel free to take a look at the Casio library at www.casio.com.
Six years ago, Casio’s began offering the Privia line, a product offered for a largely in-home musician who may have some gigs from time to time. With solid piano tones and connectability, Casio offered a great answer to the more expensive offerings from companies such as Korg and Roland for the musician who didn’t need all the bells and whistles (In the defense of the other companies, a lot of them are really cool bells and whistles, but not all necessary.). Often chosen by churches or classical musicians, as well as some aspiring jazz pianists with a need for a portable axe, Casio’s Privia keyboards have held up after years and years of play.
Today, the PX-330 and PX-130 are expanding that line to offer a keyboard well worthy of the professional (the PX-330), and a well-configured and less expensive lower model, the PX-130.
Both keyboards offer four dynamic layers of stereo piano samples, meaning that there are four distinctions in dynamic level when the touch-sensitive keys are depressed. As pianos go this is rather low on the totem pole, but still road-worthy; the loss is noticeable more in a lack of subtlety than anything else. They offer a useful USB storage system that allows the user to transfer music files to and from the piano and music players or computers, as well as act as a midi controller or studio controller for an in-home recording setup. Duet mode allows two players to use the instrument at once, great for in-home piano lessons. An acoustic resonance effect simulates the sound of dampers released off the strings “inside” the piano with the sustain pedal, a simple but nice touch.
My personal favorite feature on Casio keyboards in general, however, has always been the advanced polyphony capability. Casio keyboards (aside from light-up, mini, and student models) all have 128-Note Polyphony capability. This means that the decay from the last 128-Notes played is still being recorded continuously throughout the performance, a feature whose presence is especially felt when the damper pedal is being used, or in larger performance spaces. This, I think is as good a feature to have as the sound sampling the piano is built with, giving a full, resonant sound to the texture of the piano.
The piano offers 16 Tones, 4 types of Reverb and Chorus each, Layer and Split effects, a Recorder feature with limited storage, two headphone outputs, as well as MIDI and ¼” connections and a Pitch Bend Wheel.
The Privia Line: http://www.priviapiano.com/
YouTube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/casiokeyboards
James is a bassist, pianist, organist, composer and writer currently living and working in the Pittsburgh, PA, and Morgantown, WV areas. He is currently writing and playing his way through his last year of college and apologies for the drop-off in articles. You can tell him to get his butt in gear, just say hi, or rant about whatever you like to him by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.