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Thread: Replacing Upright Piano with MIDI Controller Keyboard

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    Replacing Upright Piano with MIDI Controller Keyboard

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    Hi all,
    I currently have a Yamaha U3 Upright piano from when I used to play classical music, but lately I've been getting into more modern styles which probably don't require a U3 piano. I was thinking of selling the piano and purchasing a weighted MIDI keyboard so that I could play piano, play other instruments, record with ease, and also have a set of sampler pads. I could probably sell the piano for 3 grand (canadian) and use the money to buy a keyboard and studio monitors (I currently mix on headphones ). Currently I am looking at the AKAI MPK88 MIDI Controller, which seems to fit my needs the best.

    If you have experience with the MPK88 or have any tips or suggestions for selling the piano or have better suggestions for a MIDI keyboard, please let me know. Thanks!

    TL;DR - Should I sell my Yamaha U3 Upright and buy an AKAI MPK88 MIDI Controller?

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    I don't have any experience with the Akai controllers, but I would like to point out that it appears to be just a controller, not a synth keyboard. From my quick search on the internet, it seems it does not generate sounds. Maybe you know this already but, you will need to run a virtual synth in your computer. The keyboard will ship with Ableton Live which is a good DAW program for midi and electronic music and there are some people on this site with experience. Ableton should have a lot of virtual synths that you can use, but you might find you want better sounding or more versatile sounds, so you'll have to shop around for plug-ins.

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    Yes, I have Ableton Live 9 Lite already and I'll probably get Addictive Keys as well if I do sell my upright. I already trigger my drums with Ableton Live so I am familiar with how it works.

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    In regards to Ableton, good program and if you want to modernize your sound, just the approach it uses will change the way you work with music and recording. That being said, the version you will get probably the lite version, therefore very limiting. Full version has a lot of synths sound, but more for modern style digital music.

    If you get it, play with before you sink the 500 in the DAW.

    That being said, I bought my daughter a Roland RD-800 I think. Nice keyboard, good sounds and many of Roland's models are good controllers as well.

    If you go for a pure controller, and you are thinking more of traditional style recording, I suggest a different DAW (like Reaper) and using the extra cash for good VSTi to use. Some really good ones out there, some free, but many cost and just wait for the sales.

    I have an Akia controller, and as a controller, it is very solid, good build quality and I have had it now for about 4 years no complaints, I would think there full keyboards would be just as good and they know how to integrate into most all DAWs, probably already have setup file to import into your favorite DAW so it all maps with little effort.

    Hope this was helpful.
    DM60 Tunes: The Collection

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    I've already played around with Ableton Live Lite and I personally love it. For now it's sufficient for me as I'm relatively new to home recording and producing.

    And I've considered a keyboard synth as well, but I really dig the DAW integration on MIDI controllers.

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    Depending on your keyboard skills, you may find a midi controller a poor substitute for a piano. There is always a disconnect between the keyboard and the virtual instrument due to latency. If you have 3k in cash from the sale of your piano, I would consider buying an electronic piano like a Casio Privia and then get a small keyboard with drum pads. You can always buy a nicer more expensive keyboard with a good piano action like a Yamaha MO8. Go to a music store and try some keyboards out and see what works for you.

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