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December 3, 2007 | Guest Reviewer: Romy Hoffman (Macromantics)
Distributor: SHRIRO 1300 768 112

PX-120DK_L_SP-3-b551b3395942f25dd5fa40bc277fdfeeLet’s start with the facts. This set of keys jets in as one of the world’s smallest digital pianos. It has 88 keys with touch response (which translates into 7 octaves), versatile digital effects including reverb, chorus and brilliance (yet it is, isn’t it!), a foot pedal, metronome, demo’s, recording memory (approx 5,000 notes), 11 tones and 128 note maximum polyphony. It features duet mode, so that two people can play within the same range and has an Optional Lock Function whereby settings can be locked in to protect against operation error. It’s convenient and compact slim, lightweight body fits in just about anywhere. Sounds like a tabloid magazine dream! Just kidding.

With its stereo-sampled Tri-element AIF (Acoustic & Intelligent Filtering System) sound source, the piano sounds lush and exuberant. You can choose from either a classic, or a modern grand piano. It resonates like a triumphant concert piano in action. The weight of the keys is very accurate in size and depth. Sometimes, modern digital keyboards lose the realism of classic pianos. This is certainly not the case with this Privia model.

Some of the adjustable sounds include; a harpsichord, vibraphone, organ and strings. Each sounds accurate in its own right. If you’re looking for a library and bank of zillions of sounds, then  this probably isn’t the keyboard for you. Again, the point of this piano is to be able to practice and play without having to find one of those monstrous beasts of an instrument. You can adjust the metronome, though it took quite some fiddling and flustering to figure this out. This was one of the only faults I found. There are a limited amount of buttons on the baby, so adjustments double and triple up per button. Sections on the piano also correspond with other functions. Again, once you do a little trial and error and a bit of twiddling, you will master the possibilities, of which there are many.

The built in recorder is a gem. It always helps to hear back what you’re playing, so you can critique and thus improve. My only wish was that there could be a multi track recorder. But, I think the purpose of this model is to keep things simple, to have an array of features that are easy to handle. If you’re looking to tweak knobs and sequence tracks and all that jazz, then hook for another keyboard or, get a midi cable and hook this up to your computer programme. Easy!

The built in demos are good for two reasons. One, well, you can play along and improve, or two, use it as a party trick. Show your friends how fluently you can swish your fingers to-and-fro and pretend to play along. I wonder what the real intention of such an added bonus is… you could simply press play and use the keyboard for some background enjoyment listening. This is perfect dish washing music.

Now, I don’t claim to be a master piano player, but I had fun with this Casio. The fact that it’s a Casio, means you can trust it. Casio have been making keyboards for since 1980, including some of my favourite little battery operated fun ones with built in samplers and cheesy sounds. This here is perfect for all types of players; those who cannot afford to buy, or move around their solid standing piano, beginners, or accomplished musicians with studios. It’s available in grey or light brown finishes and retails at $1,199.95. Stand is included.

There’s a lot out there, in the world of digital electronics. Give this a go, you’ll like it.

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