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Korg Unveils Grandstage X: A Significant Leap in the Evolution of Stage Pianos

by Madonna

Korg, a leading innovator in musical instruments, has raised the bar with the launch of the Grandstage X, the latest iteration of their flagship stage piano. The Grandstage X showcases a striking departure in design from its predecessor, featuring a more contemporary and rounded appearance with an angled panel – a departure from the traditional keyboard-style design of the previous Grandstage model, resembling the successful Korg SV-2.

Distinguishing itself with a total of seven sound engines, the Grandstage X covers a diverse range of musical tones, including acoustic and electric pianos, organs, and virtual-analog synthesizer sounds. Notably, the acoustic pianos receive a substantial upgrade with the SGX-2 engine, utilizing loop-less samples of all 88 keys and up to 12 velocity layers for a detailed and authentic reproduction. The instrument boasts an impressive selection of 13 pianos, ranging from renowned concert grands to the widely recognized M1 piano.

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The electric pianos on the Grandstage X are equally sophisticated, employing Korg’s MDS technology (Multi-Dimensional Synthesis) to ensure seamless transitions between velocity layers. Complementing these features are three organ engines (CX-3, VOX, FC-1), the virtual-analog AL-1 engine, and sample-based synthesis with the HD-1 engine, ensuring that the Grandstage X caters to the diverse needs of gigging keyboard players. To enhance sound shaping capabilities, the instrument includes a built-in effects section with reverb, delay, and a Nutube-based saturation stage (Analog Tone).

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Korg takes pride in the RH3 keybed, featuring a scaled hammer action manufactured in Japan, providing an authentic playing feel. The user interface has undergone a significant update, incorporating a Key Touch slider for easy adjustment of dynamic response. Setting up splits and layers is made effortless with three buttons and three sliders dedicated to adjusting volume balance, allowing users to utilize these features simultaneously.

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In a bold move, Korg has integrated a rhythm section into the Grandstage X, capable of generating drum grooves and bass lines for seamless accompaniment. The rhythm section intelligently follows the chords played or allows users to create predefined chord patterns, adding an innovative dimension to the instrument’s capabilities.

The Grandstage X emerges as a substantial upgrade from its predecessor, offering a vast selection of sounds that could potentially eliminate the need for a secondary instrument in most live performances. While opinions may vary on the inclusion of the rhythm feature, it undoubtedly adds a layer of fun for practicing musicians, further solidifying the Grandstage X as a versatile and powerful stage piano.

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