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EK-50 First Impressions

 
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musicmaker84



Joined: 01 Nov 2018
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 3:55 pm    Post subject: EK-50 First Impressions Reply with quote

Got it for $60 less than list price of $399. Itís plenty of keyboard for this price. Very decent speakers. Overall good built quality, but the volume knob is a bit flimsy. The keybed is silent. Effects are plenty but cannot be changed on the fly. Volume can be changed for all parts and voices easily, but it requires both hands. Harmony function is a bit of mystery to me, since it seems to be set to sound jazzy even when playing rock or pop styles, and canít be changed it seems.

Joystick is great to have, just wish it could be programmed with all effects and then serve as a turn on/turn off switch. Some effects can be programmed to it (wah), but most not. Rotor speed slow and fast is automatically assigned to it, at least with some organs I tried.

Overall, itís fun and decent sounding, and I also have used it as a sound expander for an arranger Software on the PC which makes it as versatile as one could wish. Havenít run out of polyphony either.
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musicmaker84



Joined: 01 Nov 2018
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, love the fact that boot time is super fast, almost instantly. 8 Aa batteries might seem gimmicky, but I have dealt with many major and minor outages in my area. All my other equipment becomes useless in this case, but the Korg could save the day with this ability.
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mf_blues
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Joined: 12 Nov 2008
Posts: 178
Location: Wolverhampton, UK

PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 9:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recently got to see one in my local music store, I was very impressed, the EK50 is an excellent keyboard for the price and sounds great, the built in speakers sounded really good to me.

Hope you many happy hours with it, nice one.

cheers

Martin. Very Happy
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musicmaker84



Joined: 01 Nov 2018
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2018 2:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Mart,

Yes, the built-in speakers actually begin to amaze me. I had another keyboard routed through them, and they really make the other board come alive. Mind you, the other board usually blasts through a dedicated amplifier and a set of decent Yamaha speakers, but there is something about the KorgĎs that made me smile today. Perhaps itís better defined in the midrange that got my attention.

Also, the set lists buttons are a joy to work with. I was afraid that switching from one registration to the other would interrupt the style playback, but it operates seamlessly. What that means is one can have easily as many registrations per song as one could wish for. Apparently one can import/export via USB stick entire banks. So, one could create an entire bank just with X-Mas songs, load them in, play them, then load an entire bank 80s or such.

Biggest drawback so far: harmony cannot be changed to different types and effects cannot be easily changed or switched on and off on the fly.
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musicmaker84



Joined: 01 Nov 2018
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm having fun with the board. On the fly changes are easy using the set list registrations. Usually I use 2 buttons per song, but you could use as many as you wish for complex arrangements (Pirates of the Caribbean, etc.) until you run out of bank space.

I am NOT happy how effects are handled as I said in another post. Maybe I am missing something here, but I cannot find a good reverb that doesn`t sound like you moved a half a mile away from the instrument. Hence, I don't use effects for now and organs/strings sound a bit dry.

I cannot rate highly enough the fact that this key is almost instant play. My other equipment takes time to boot. Therefore, I had sometimes my stuff on the whole day, so I could quickly go playing between work and chores. Now, there is hope I can save on my electricity bill. Doesn't mean I won't be using my other instruments, but for a quick session, this key is enough.

In terms of sounds, the organs are very usable, and I am happy with most of the woodwinds, pianos, etc. The strings and brass combos are usable but not necessarily my cup of tea. I prefer the sound of my Wersi Pegasus Wing in this department for film scores etc.
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musicmaker84



Joined: 01 Nov 2018
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 8:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I fear that I will have to return the key. I donít know if itís just a software flaw or if the hardware is developing a problem. Iíve had today some notes in some songs continue playing long after I had released the keys, stopped the rhythm. It happened with different instruments at different points in time and does seem to happen randomly. I was able to shoot vids. It had already happen in the left hand, I believe, some days ago, but thought it was a one off. Now itís clear to me that itís not a Ąfeatureď, but a show stopper. Hanging notes are just inexcusable.
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Giner
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Joined: 02 May 2003
Posts: 1155
Location: Alberta

PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 3:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not familiar with this model, but the 'hanging notes' problem has occurred on all Korg arrangers since whenever - certainly did on my i30, Pa1xPro, and on my current Pa3x. It usually happens on sustained sounds such as organs or strings and especially if you're further sustaining those sounds with a sustain pedal.

The cure is to hit SHIFT, hold it and press START/STOP, it's a brief move even if it doesn't sound like it in words. i'm supposing your keyboard has a 'shift' button. You can, if you time it right, disguise the move as a break.
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Pa3x-61, Pa1xPro, i30, Micromoog (1975)
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musicmaker84



Joined: 01 Nov 2018
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Giner Thanks a lot for your feedback. I never owned anything Korg, so itís interesting to hear it has been around for a good while. There is a shift button. Will try your hack next time it happens, but I consider it as a severe showstopper, no matter the workaround. I started to get used to the key, until this discovery has occurred now repeatedly. I would hate to send it back for good because of the many things it does well, but this one bug really is something.
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studio99
Junior Member


Joined: 25 Jun 2013
Posts: 94

PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2018 2:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've had mine for about 3 weeks and havn't had that problem (yet)
Love the board but I agree that's a deal breaker especially if you use it for ive performance!
Please keep us advised on how it goes
Thanks!

Pat Leach
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studio99
Junior Member


Joined: 25 Jun 2013
Posts: 94

PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2018 2:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've had mine for about 3 weeks and havn't had that problem (yet)
Love the board but I agree that's a deal breaker especially if you use it for ive performance!
Please keep us advised on how it goes
Thanks!

Pat Leach
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musicmaker84



Joined: 01 Nov 2018
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 6:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So, I found the redemy. Only Right Hand 1. Voice seems to be affected - for now. Cure is to quickly mute/unmute the offending voice.

Still, far from acceptable for performances. Even for home use. I compare it to a car quitting while driving. Unacceptable.
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NativeAngels
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Mar 2012
Posts: 356

PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 9:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If its a software error, it maybe fixed in an update.
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