Korg microSTATION – The Benefits Of Mini Keyboards

Korg-microStation-keyboard

The benefits of using mini keyboards for playing or producing music are numerous and it’s well worth the effort to take the time to familiarize yourself with these mini powerhouses. Don’t believe me? Too awkward you say? What was it like playing the piano for the first time? It was awkward, right? It’s the same with Mini keyboards, they take some getting use to, but once you are use to them, you will see the advantages as well.

Mini keyboards are typically featured in compact MIDI controllers, where they allow for other pads, knobs, or faders (or a combination thereof). The keys themselves are not designed to be exclusive, in other words, they are not meant to be the primary keyboard. Not that a musician couldn’t use them for such. It is nevertheless important to recognize that they are significant, and can be very useful for traveling, for studio recording, for stage performances, to name just a few.

The Korg microSTATION is a fine example of the usage of mini keyboards. By freeing up space on the workstation front, Korg was able to add additional controls such as the XY joystick and the 16 step sequencer with a corresponding visual grid. They essentially threw two instruments into one simply by dropping the key size. Still not convinced? The Korg microSTATION can be hooked up via USB to your digital audio workstation and can turn into a VSTi! That is right, you don’t have to worry about playing those keys perfectly while recording, you can have the software do it for you! Finally, if you wanted to, you could hook up a full sized MIDI keyboard to the microSTATION, although it might look a bit strange.

I couldn’t discuss mini keyboards without comparing them to full sized keys. The Roland Gaia has full sized keys and a whole lot of controls to emulate the feel of a vintage synthesizer. Wouldn’t it be awesome if there were more effects? Or some adjustable filters outside of the main synthesis ones? If the unit had smaller keys, it would have space for those and more keys.

To finish up, you need to try out mini keyboards for yourself. Don’t just play with them at a Music store or such. Get a hands on experience for a day bot two – borrow a friend’s, hire one – whatever you need to do to get to actually use a mini keyboards for a day or more. I promise you won’t regret it, unless your friends are the jealous type.

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