Kawai K5000

Kawai K5000S Image

The K5000 was Kawai's top of the line music workstation digital synthesizer when it was released back in 1996. It's a bold and elegantly designed synth with a large LCD display, realtime controls and incredible sounds! The look and functionality is rivals the competition from the time...the Korg Trinity and Kurzweil K2500.

Programming sounds with the K5000 can be a breeze (once you learn how) although it has over 1,000 parameters per patch! That's plenty to play with. It combines additive synthesis and PCM sampled waveforms for you to layer and combine to design a whole range of sounds. Plenty of LFO modulation, filters and envelope controls allow you to shape and morph your sounds further. On-board multi-effects add the final touch of life to your sounds.

Once you've created some sounds, there's the on-board sequencer (K5000W only) for creating songs or loading Standard Midi File sequences (via disk-drive). It has a 40,000 note capacity and 40 tracks. Real-time record and step-edit modes are available and the sequencer is pretty straight forward.

The K5000S (pictured above) adds 12 dedicated knobs for hands-on control of filter, LFO and envelope parameters. There are 4 user-definable knobs and 2 assignable switches. The K5000S also has a 40-pattern arpeggiator on-board with 8 user-definable patterns too! K5000's have been used by Kraftwerk.

Kawai K5000-Rack Image

In 1997 a rack-module version of the K5000 was released. The rack version shipped with Kawai's more stable OS 3.0 software. The latest is 4.03 and is free to upgrade via download from Kawai. The rack offers all the same power and flexibility as its keyboard counterparts. To get a more hands-on-knobs control of the K5000 (like the K5000S) there is a Knobs Macro box. But other controllers such as Encore Knobby or Keyfax Phatboy can also do the trick.

Lookup Kawai K5000 Prices

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Comments

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63 Visitor comments
planetplayer
January 15, 2009 @ 11:49 pm
Another thing about the K5000 series. I think this is specific to the K5000R, but I think there was a memory expansion also. The memory upgrade was like $200 to $350 extra. The amount of patches and performance on the rack is dependent on system memory available after creating the harmonic and format structures. So there was not a fixed amount of pathes and performances, but there were maximum amounts selectable from unit or midi with bank switch and patch change messages. This machine is powerful!
planetplayer
January 15, 2009 @ 11:48 pm
Another thing about the K5000 series. I think this is specific to the K5000R, but I think there was a memory expansion also. The memory upgrade was like $200 to $350 extra. The amount of patches and performance on the rack is dependent on system memory available after creating the harmonic and format structures. So there was not a fixed amount of path and performanced, but there were maximum amounts selectable from unit or midi with bank switch and patch change messages. This machine is powerful!
planetplayer
January 15, 2009 @ 11:40 pm
This is excellent! Good work Kawai. Nice looks. The K5 wasn't bad either. I like the clean looks of these instruments.
planetplayer
January 15, 2009 @ 11:26 pm
I think the AN1X may have taken a lot of buyers from the K5000. At the time there was a big rush to get Vintage analogue gear then came modeling so additive once again took a back turn. I love additive/ This is advanced additive and a very good learning tool. Plus the FX livens everything up even more and sounds good for single patch and performance patch. Rare is that the The FX or flexible to record with as part of the sound except maybe a little Dry/Wet mix balance maybe made with reverb. I still have the original brochures.
planetplayer
January 15, 2009 @ 11:26 pm
The K5 and K5000 series is a very good idea. There was another version with full length quality PCM synth samples like samples on a Sound Canvas or X5D module(non single cycle and milisecond snippets) plus additive synthesis and workstation K5000W. I enjoyed playing all of them when they first came out. They have nice performance features like the knobs that allows the user to change parameters on the fly. This could be used on the stage easily. The sounds were cool.
 
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  • Check Price
  • The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 32 voices
  • Oscillators - Digital Additive Synthesis plus PCM samples; Harmonics: 64 per source; Waveforms: 689 (123 synth, 341 GM, 225 drums). Note: only K5000W features GM sounds
  • Effects - 4 effects algorithms with 32 different effects
  • Filter - 128-band formant filter, 24dB/oct low-pass and high-pass
  • LFO - 2 (one for formant filter, one can be freely routed to other destinations)
  • VCA - 1 ASDR per part, with key scale and velocity
  • Arpeg/Seq - Sequencer: 40 tracks, 40,000 note capacity (K5000W only)
    Arpeggiator: 40 patterns, 8 user (K5000S and K5000R only)
  • Keyboard - 61 Keys with velocity and aftertouch
  • Memory - 200 patches, 64 performances
  • Control - MIDI (K5000S, K5000R: 4-part multi-timbral; K5000W: 32-part multi-timbral)
  • Date Produced - 1996
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from
    and LoungeLizard via Synth Site.

    Thanks to Jesse Farmer for providing some information.

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