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Did anyone buy Yamaha MODX ???

 
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Pedja
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2018 10:17 am    Post subject: Did anyone buy Yamaha MODX ??? Reply with quote

I am in serious temptation to buy Yamaha MODX 6, but I am only in position to make a decision, considering video presentation clips on YouTube (still none music shop, in my living town, has this instrument). I know very well that this is not a good move (to buy without try), and because of that I put this in subject, with hope that someone (who bought it or test it) who has Kronos and MODX will help me. I have some questions:

1. General opinion about keyboard, feeling and quality
2. Acoustic piano sounds comparison, Kronos and MODX
3. El. piano sounds comparison, Kronos and MODX
4. General impression about sounds in relation with Kronos sounds
5. Comparison between Kronos combies and MODX live sets
6. Is it easy to connect Kronos and MODX that Kronos be controller to MODX?

I will be very much appreciate, for all your comments about my questions, and more if you have it.
Thanks in advance.
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Last edited by Pedja on Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:41 pm; edited 1 time in total
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benny ray
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2018 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kronos all the way not even close. Please! I tried the MODX and for me I was not impressed but everyone has there opinion. From an experienced player with that tried the MODX but just not for me.

Try it for yourself you may connect but I have my Kronos set and it is really impressive.
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Artcutech



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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2018 2:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did, was not impressed and returned it, just didn't give me the warm gitty feeling the original motif series did for some reason, really loved the on board sampler(saturation!) that the motif had and I was aware that modx did not have one(it can load samples but thats not the same) but still decided to try it out. So then I went and tried out a Kronos and was instantly sold(plus it has an onboard sampler), wow sounded amazing, but you might think the opposite.

I personally don't think the montage/modx measure up to the Kronos sound wise, but I know that they're are people who do
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Derek Cook
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2018 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, there is lots of discussion and active topics on the MODX over on Yamaha Musicians Forum, and the general consensus is that most people are happy with the MODX - a cracking product at a good price point.

I have a Montage 7 and Kronos X 61 and I like both of them. They are quite different beasts in terms of sound character.

My own responses to your questions (noting that the MODX is the mostly same engine as the Montage)

1. General opinion about keyboard, feeling and quality

Can't comment, as the MODX keybed is different to the Montage. Be aware that the MODX does not have after touch (but it will receive it). But people on Yamaha Musicians seem to like it.

2. Acoustic piano sounds comparison, Kronos and MODX

Hard to comment as acoustic piano sounds are so subjective between different ears. I prefer Yamaha "Rock" pianos for cutting through a mix in a crowded rock song, but for anything delicate then I think Kronos SGX-2 still has the edge and of course you have sympathetic string resonance

3. El. piano sounds comparison, Kronos and MODX

I have heard brilliant EPs on both Kronos and Montage, but feel the Kronos has the slight edge in the EP-1 engine. If you are after DX EPs then you are spoilt on both machines in either FM-X or MOD7

3. General impression about sounds in relation with Kronos sounds

Both are excellent sounding boards, and a lot of it is whether you want the sonic character of Yamaha or Korg as I find the two quite different overall.

I'm a long term Yamaha fan who came to Korg Kronos when I got bored if endless rehashes of the Motif engine, and wanted a multi engine modern day equivalent of the Yamaha EX5, and found it in spades in the Kronos. I was quite critical of Montage when it first came out since it only had AWM2 and FM-X, but then I auditioned the Montage for what it was, not what I wanted it to be, and walked out of the store with one within 30 minutes. Yamaha cover a lot of ground in AWM and FF-X. Like the SY77, it can sound very analog sounding without having analog modelling on board. The one weak point of the Montage/MODX compared to Kronos is the organs. A sample only organ will never cut it.

4. Comparison between Kronos combies and MODX live sets

The comparison should actually be against Kronos Set lists and Montage/MODX Live Sets. Both are pretty similar and do the same job. You only have 8 Live Sets (of 256 Performances) compared to 128 Setlists (128 Programs/Combis/Songs) of the Kronos, but that is not as bad as it sounds as you can name each page of 16 slots in the Montage/MODX. Kronos Setlists are slightly better featured in allowing you to do keyboard transposes, have EQs, Set List notes, etc.

5. Is it easy to connect Kronos and MODX that Kronos be controller to MODX?

I effectively do that, but do it via a PC Host in a program called Cantabile, which is also a MIDI processor for my rig and VST host.

Don't forget that Montage/MODX is not a workstation, but a performance synth, so only has a limited Performance recorder, not a full on sequencer, and no concept of Song Mode. It's real time controllers such as Superknob, Motion Sequencing and Scenes are different to KARMA but you get some very interesting results out of it.

Another observation. Having lived with Kronos, sample streaming and being able to store everything on SSD (and access it via FTP on a PC) makes the Montage/MODX usage of fixed size FLASH memory and USB thumb drives for transfer of data seem very retrograde.

So pros and cons swings and roundabouts. I like both

HTH
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leonh
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2018 8:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Only advantage that Modx got over Kronos is 10000 + phrases which enables you to make patterns easy saying that Karma is more than a mach for that (just more complicated) so yes it is good but not better than Kronos just nice addition to your set.
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19naia
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2018 9:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

got to play an 88 key MODX yesterday at Guitar center.
If they had kronos there, i would have played kronos instead.
Went home later and played kronos without a thought for MODX.

I guess it would be nice to have MODX and Kronos together at home but i have a laptop in mind. One with over 10,000 high quality synth sounds and much more other features than another Keyboard could give me.
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Pedja
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 7:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you very much guys,
I can't express my appreciation for your comments. Special thanks to Derek Cook for very detailed analysis of every question I have asked, and his personal opinion (pro and contra) about other things.
After precise analysis of all your comments I can conclude that it is more contra then pro, and that my personal test, can make a final judge. But, as I said in my first comment I can't test MODX6, only which I can is to test Montage 6.
Only thing which I have to add is when I asked question 4. Comparison between Kronos combies and MODX live sets, I didn't mean about possibilities (Kronos set list compare to MODX Live set list), but comparison between structure of timbers their fitting and general impression about this quality of combi sound (live set sound).
Thank you again to all of you, and I wish you all best in life and music.
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Derek Cook
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 8:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, Pedja

Thanks for the clarification on Q4.

Because there is only Performance (Combi) Mode in the Montage/MODX, and Voices (Programs) only exist in Performances as Parts (Timbres), and because a Live Set only references the Performances you put in it, then there is no difference sound wise between what you hear in Performance Mode and what you hear in Live Set Mode

With the Kronos Combi mode you have the same effects structure as a Program, so have to share the effects. With the Montage/MODX, you only ever have what you have in Performance mode, if that makes sense.
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Pedja
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Derek,
And thank you for your reply. Obviously I am very bad in Yamaha terminology. All my intention was, with question 4., to get your opinion (or others from forum), which is better Performances for Montage/MODX or Combies for Kronos, and which are more inspired? I know that it is very difficult to answer to this question, because taste is very individual. But, I believe in your taste and opinion, because I know that you are excellent sound designer, and you can recognize very good who is the "winner". Thanks for all Derek.
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DeltaJockey
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have owned a MODX8 for a few weeks now. While I don't have a lot of experience with it yet, and don't own a Montage. I can only give my general impression, which appears to be not as unkind as the popular opinion on this thread, simply because I did not purchase it in direct competition with my Kronos, and given it's price, I don't expect as much out of it, in general.

I had stopped short of buying a Montage simply because there was quite a bit of hardware on it I wouldn't have used for the expense, as I have many of those functions on other keyboards already, including the Kronos. Once the MODX was released it was just the compromise I was looking for. Yamaha is probably the manufacturer I've had the least hardware from over the years, and I'm more of a Korg minded person anyway. I bought the MODX as I wanted a complementary sound, not something to re-create Korg type features with.

Firstly, the keybed...

The GHS weighted action I find is quite nice for the weight. I have a Casio PX which was always my favourite weighted keybed for lightness, but I'm feeling the MODX8 will take it's place.
My absolute favourite keybed these days is my go to RH3 on my Kronos.

At this stage I find the GHS to feel very tight, like the suspension of a new car, but we'll see how it wears! The Casio PX keybed, has always felt a little sloppy in it's key hinging, but the GHS is not like that, despite being a similar carry weight.
A slightly shorter key pivot, but nothing a bit of muscle memory can't overcome. I accept a bit of compromise given it's portability.

The sounds are distinctly Yamaha, to me, somewhere between the tight, bright sharpness of Roland, and the wonderfully organic sounds the Kronos is capable of bathing your ears in. The FMX I'm sure plays a big part too.
I love the realtime multi parameter control, and though this is standard fair with Karma and Kronos, the interfacing is implemented differently on each, meaning you have such a different experience on either, not better or worse, just different.

I've never really taken to Yamaha or Roland S/N pianos, I find I'm neverendingingly EQ'ing them and still can't get them right. They have a certain bell ring in the middle registers, like there are higher order harmonics suppressed. To me the Kronos pianos are more to my taste, and again a little more organic. The Bosendorfer on the Montage/MODX is a little closer to the Kronos pianos but still something missing to me.

The Yamahas come with a customised copy of SampleRobot, allowing you to create libraries and user files. I've found this quite easy to use and just for the exercise, have created a couple of piano libraries from the open source Iowa Grand piano samples. They play well on the MODX.

So to me, the MODX has some great contrasting features to my existing rig, and I'm glad I bought one. I tried the MODX6/7 but being dominantly a piano player, there was no decision to be made toward the 88, especially when it's so portable, weight wise. The 6/7 keybed is the compromise you'd expect, better than an FA06, about the same quality as an FA07, not better or worse, just different.

Now, having said that..... the Kronos is still my personal favourite, and if I had to have just one keyboard, that would be it, but I don't have to restrict myself to the one, so the MODX is nice in it's one way too Very Happy
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Pedja
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you very much DeltaJockey,
For very good and detail analysis. Specially appreciate your comparison with keybed on FA06 and FA07 (I was in dilemma to buy FA06 before MODX). When we talk about MODX, if I buy it, it will be MODX6, because I plane to connect it to Kurzweil PC3LE8. Fatar keybed (on this keyboard) is for me, best I have ever tried. I wish you all best.
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Rigel
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 7:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I rarely use the onboard presets as they are, but try to modify the existing ones or create from sctratch new ones that I have in mind on my synths. I spend a lot of time in MOD7 engine, which I think is an excellent synth, not only for FM but for its semimodular structure allowing pretty complex subtractive sounds as well, and an excellent implementation of FM synthesis, probably the best in synthesizer history. Having the highly developed HD1 PCM machine with its sampling capability, and the MOD7 in one place, leaves no place for a MODX in my arsenal. No need (for me) to have two expensive large synths that do roughly the same job. Instead I would look to other complementary stuff, such as granular synthesis, semimodular analog thingies etc. Just my humble opinion.

One more thing to say before I finish..

Just a tiny bit of tweaking of the presets on your Kronos that you mention above in your qouestions causes them to change their character profoundly, and some experimentation will provide you with what you're after without having to buy a new synth merely for its subtle differences between its presets and the corresponding ones on the Kronos. Play with its envelopes, the efx parameters, EQ settings... Kronos is a huge synthesizer, it's not an ordinary rompler.
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Pedja
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 7:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Rigle for interesting observations, not strictly in connection with questions which I have asked, but very instructive in the plan of using Kronos. I have to say that I am not a guy who experimenting with sounds or make a new ones. I am not this type of sound design oriented. I saw in your arsenal of equipment that you have a great instruments (one of them is Roland V-Synth GT which I am impressed for a long time), and it will be strange that you wish to buy MODX. You really don't need it. Thanks for reply and I wish you all best.
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http://moca.virtual.museum/autogallery2015/autogallery_kalajdzijevic/
http://moca.virtual.museum/autogallery2017/autogallery_kalajdzijevic/
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