Synth Site: Kawai: Kawai K1 mkII: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 3.9 out of 5
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implant //dextryna a hobbyist user from poland writes:
It is good sytnh to make some strange noises, it is good to emulate a atari/commodore chipsound, there are no filters on board - this is big minus... anyway, i make some good sounds and I think i will use them in sampler :) if you want to have a good masterkeyboard with aftertouch - buy it now, you will use onboard module too, it is good and cheap piece of synth :)

Rating: 3 out of 5 posted Wednesday-Dec-12-2001 at 11:27
Pat O'Heran a part-time user from canada writes:
Hey this unit does have a local off. It can only be used in the multi patch setting. When picking the 8 patches you can set them to local or midi or both.

posted Tuesday-Nov-20-2001 at 21:44
marc ellis a professional user from New Orleans writes:
Classic string pad, S-I-A in the default patch set.

I have built my entire sound around that patch for 12 years. Great feeling for a little keyboard. Early 8 bit digital patches (I love!)

The worst pianos I've ever heard on a synth.

I love this synth. I bought a second one. I will buy a third also. I own newer synths. But only the K1 S-I-A patch is irreplaceable in my synth set.

As long as I play music, there will be a K1 in my working gear setup.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Saturday-Oct-13-2001 at 15:19
Dave T Rave a part-time user from UK writes:
Don't think that is a great MIDI controller, though it certainly is cheap in the second hand market, as it has no local off setting (aaaaarghh!).

Why don't all keyboards have this function?

As has been said though it is capable of making some great sounds i.e. pads, percussive effects, and just plain weird sounds.

I suspect it would be vastly improved by sticking it through a TLaudio FAT1 or something similar to warm it up a bit as it can sound a little harsh.

With careful selection of sources (204 additive or 52 PCM), of which up to 4 can be in each single patch, and with careful setting of envelopes some nice sounds can be achieved.

If only it had a filter!

I think something like the Waldorf 2pole filter unit would be an ideal companion because making big harsh sounds with this board is easy and shoving thase through a filter results in some interesting percussive sounds.

The final interesting point is Kawai's cross modulation function where sources 1+2 can modulate each other and sources 3+4 can do likewise. Makes some very unusual, and admittedly not always musically useful, rhythmical sounds.

All the best,

Dave T Rave :)

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Thursday-Sep-06-2001 at 07:38
Bruce S a professional user from United States writes:
The K1II was my first polyphonic synth. It was 8 voice polyphonic using 4 sound sources - 16 if you used 2 but rather thin sounding.

This synth is a killer! No filters, 8 bit sampled waveforms and a whole bunch of additive digital timbres, this synth had a gritty, digital sound that at it's best rivaled synths like the Korg M1.

Of course the M1 was more realistic sample based and had far better samples and built in sequencer but the little K1 II had a joystick that let you mix between partials used in a patch, a nice touch.

The K1 II was fairly hopeless for realistic sounds but did amazingly decent electric piano and organ sounds. Strings were excellent and evolving pads were wonderfull. Sure, there were cleaner synths and better sonic resolution yet the K1 II is capable of evocative timbres that are standouts.

I no longer own one but would like to get another. It was one of the least expensive controller keyboards with good feel and aftertouch. Useless if you wanted realistic pianos or things like guitars. Unreal considering how simple it's synth engine design was.

It's a bit dated but still worth having both as a controller and for the odd pad that has a unique sonic signature.

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Jun-19-2001 at 07:00
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