Casio Privia PX-5S 88-key Stage Piano
Casio are known for producing affordable pianos and keyboards, and the Privia PX-5S is one to look out for.
It features Casio's AiR processor, which seeks to emulate the detail and high definition sounds found in a grand piano. It also features the Hex layer synthesizer technology found in Casio's XW-P1 synthesizer.
This is made out of six sample layers that make up a single tone where you can manipulate each of their own parameters and effects.
In addition it has multiple physical controllers including pitch and modulation wheels, 4 knobs, 6 sliders and 2 foot switch inputs.
- Keys: 88, Hammer action
- Polyphony: 256
- Effects: System Effects, Insert Effects, Master Effects
- Sequencer: 8 Tracks
- Other Controllers: 4 knobs, 6 sliders, Pitch & Modwheel
- Audio Inputs: 2 x 1/4" Line-in, 1 x 1/8" Line-in
- Audio Outputs:2 x 1/4" TS Lin-Out
- Other Connectivity 2 Pedal Inputs
- Dimension: 52.05" x 5.31" x 11.26"
- Weight: 24.47 lbs
Stage friendly and portable are some of the comments mentioned by musicians who have experience using this unit. For an 88-key piano, it's very light weight since the main body is made out of plastic. Despite being made using plastic, it's quite sturdy and having it powered by batteries makes it convenient to bring around for a jam. In terms key action, a number of customers mentioned it had a very fast and natural response. The built-in grand piano presets produced great quality sounds, while its Arp and Hex Layering allowed piano players to layer the pianos with other patches creatively. In his Sound on Sound review, Nick Magnus mentioned its sound engine "provides seamless timbral variations across the dynamic range; ie. no audible jumps between velocity layers, as well as a smooth tonal gradation across the entire keyboard range. "
Although the knobs and faders are easy to figure out, some reviewers found issues with the menu system. An example of this is pressing four buttons in order to transpose keys. Some also found the organ presets don't have a natural sound to them, which isn't really an issue if you focus on using piano presets.
This is an affordable, convenient and light-weight option with great effects and layering capabilities.