Kawai K5000, which version to choose?

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Kawai K5000, which version to choose?

Postby paugui » Thu Mar 20, 2008 1:11 pm

Hi

I was really wanting to get an additive synth, so was thinking about the Kawai K5000.

But was wondering which advantages each version (S, W, R) has.

I know the S version has knobs, which makes it quite cool, but compared to the W version, does it loses anything other than the sequencer?

And how is the keyboard? Is it a good one or is probably better to get the rack version and use it with a controller?

I guess this is all for now...


Thanks in advance,
Best regards

Paugui
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Postby cornutt » Thu Mar 20, 2008 3:10 pm

I'm not sure how much the knobs on the S version really help you due to the sheer number of parameters. On the other hand, if you already have a DAW or external seqeuencer, you don't need the workstation features in the W version. From what I've read, the keyboard feel on most Kawais is among the better ones, but I'm not sure how complete the MIDI implemetation is. (The only Kawai I have is a K5m, which is a rackmount.) I'd say go for whichever one you can get the cheapest.
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Postby paugui » Thu Mar 20, 2008 3:16 pm

I was just wondering if in terms of sound there is a difference between the S and the W and R versions, as I'm not totally sure if they all have the PCM section, which I think could be useful if it could interact with the additive part of the synth...
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Postby braincandy » Thu Mar 20, 2008 3:42 pm

The key action on the K5000s is outstanding. The keys are heavier and feel more "substantial" than most synths I've used. It's not like you're going to have to worry about playing too hard. I like lighter actions for some things, and it's a huge difference than playing a synth with a lighter key action like a K2000 or a Roland XP-series.

In terms of synthesis abilities, I don't know that there's a difference between the different models. In doing a brief search, it looks like the K5000W may have a General MIDI bank (who uses GM?), more PCM samples available, 32-part multimbrailty, and drum kits. There isn't any difference, synthesis-wise, between the S and R from the SOS article implied.

Here's where I found this info for comparison:
http://www.keyboardmuseum.com/ar/k/kawai/k5000s.html
http://www.keyboardmuseum.org:16080/ar/ ... 5000w.html
http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/1997_ar ... 5000s.html
http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/1997_ar ... 5000w.html

Best of luck, as the K5000s is a nice synth and I wish I still had mine from time to time.
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Postby paugui » Thu Mar 20, 2008 3:58 pm

Thanks for the links

I was seeing that the W has a PCM section that the others don't...
But I guess it can only be layered with the additive sounds, and since I already have some PCM synths I don't think I'll lose that much without the PCM...


Thanks again

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Postby filtermod » Thu Mar 20, 2008 4:15 pm

I own and love the k5000s. The key action is nice and the build is pretty solid. The PCM section is useful for adding hard transients to the additive sounds, but I don't miss the extra samples from the W version.
This is a synth that requires some serious menu diving unless you have a computer editor (suggested) I use sounddiver on a crusty old os9 mac, but I believe you can find some free editors online. When I bought mine it came with a windows version of sounddiver that was just for the k5k. If you're a windows user, make sure to ask the seller to dig up that disk! It will help save your sanity! The payoff is well worth the menu diving time if you can't find a computer editor though.
One reason I went with the S version was for the knobs. While they only cover a few of the k5k's wealth of parameters, they are actually a big help when you are tweaking your sounds and programming. Four of the knobs are assignable, and the rest give you access to some useful additive and subtractive functions like:
low and high harmonic balance, even and odd harmonic balance, formant filter speed and depth (you can do some really interesting things with these in realtime), you also have the obligatory cutoff and resonance knobs among others.
The knobs on the S don't cover everything, but they can save some menu diving for fast tweaks and they offer some interesting realtime options.
If it isn't already obvious, I would say go for the k5000s :)
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Postby vcs3 » Thu Mar 20, 2008 4:19 pm

Olá,
I have a K5000r with the controller, but the real power of the K5000 is
with a software editor.

cumps.
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Postby filtermod » Thu Mar 20, 2008 5:18 pm

vcs3 wrote:Olá,
I have a K5000r with the controller, but the real power of the K5000 is
with a software editor.

cumps.


Absolutely. Having a software editor is key for getting the most from a synth like the K5k. The assignable and pre-assigned knobs are just an added bonus for realtime parameter tweaking.
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Postby paugui » Thu Mar 20, 2008 8:02 pm

Thank you all for your help

How much would be a fair price for a K5000S?
I'm not yet sure if I'll have enough space for one... but I'll try to find it :P

If I don't have enough space, would I lose much with the K5000R?
And how much would this cost?
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Postby filtermod » Thu Mar 20, 2008 9:23 pm

paugui wrote:would I lose much with the K5000R?


Just the knobs, switches, and keyboard. The rack and the S version have the same synth engine. So you wouldn't be losing anything in that respect. At this point I think I would rather have the rack just to save some space.
The S is just under 41" long (103 & 1/2cm) and about 13" deep (32cm)
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Postby paugui » Thu Mar 20, 2008 9:31 pm

I'm thinking about the same too... I don't know if I have that much space, or at least I won't have if something really cool comes out in the future if I get the stuff I plan... but if I do that I probably won't need that stuff.

By the way, are there a lot of stands for 4 keyboards?
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Postby Stab Frenzy » Thu Mar 20, 2008 11:56 pm

I'm a little late here, but I'd just like to add my voice to those who said the K5000 is a great synth. My ex had a K5000W which lived in my studio for a few years, where it was the main controller for quite a while. The action is really great, second only to the V-Synth of those I've played.

I think the S would be the one to go for, because of the knobs, but I found I used the PCM waveforms in the W a fair bit, but it was the only PCM synth in my studio at the time. Either of them would be a good choice.
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Postby minime123 » Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:21 pm

as far as i know the W is just a lame sample playback machine. get the S or the R. the R if you want a rack and can do without the knobs. or get an R with the knob box. or better yet, use it with sounddiver or a similar editor.
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Postby Stab Frenzy » Sat Mar 22, 2008 1:55 am

minime123 wrote:as far as i know the W is just a lame sample playback machine.

No it's not, it has the same additive synth as the S or R, as well as a PCM section and a sequencer.
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Postby minime123 » Sat Mar 22, 2008 2:03 pm

hmm. thanks for the correction. the S and R have pcm waves as well. so im guessing the W just has more then? when i bought my first k5000 (shortly after it came out), i intentionally avoided the W. maybe it was because i just didnt need additional PCMs then? i dont know, i thought there was more to it... or maybe it was just that i didnt want another keyboard taking up space and the rack didnt offer the additional features of the W...
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