Tomorrow night live on Ustream.tv, Casio’s Mike Martin will take you through the controller functions of the PX-5S. Creating zones, assigning sliders, knobs, pedals and more. The webinar starts at 7:00pm EST at http://www.ustream.tv/casiomusicgear
I’ve found an interesting way to control layered sounds using the sliders. If you simply assign the slider to control volume or expression of a layered sound, that layer is still using polyphony even if the volume is all the way down. This is rarely an issue with the PX-5S since it has 256 notes of polyphony but its always good to be safe especially if your layered tone is a Hex Layer that uses many voices at once.
Since slider can have 2 targets, here is the trick. Assign Target 1 for a slider to control volume. Set a minimum range of around 20. Set Target 2 for this slider to be Zone on/off. Set the minimum range to 63 and the Maximum range to 127. This means that when the slider is all the way back, the zone is off and does not use any polyphony. As soon as you move it forward turns on at a low volume level. This makes it very musical and easy to control the layer.
You can find this technique in a new Stage Setting I posted called “Grand Movie“. It is used on Sliders 1 and 2. Give it a try.
Last month a music retailer posted a video featuring the 4stage pianos on the market. The Yamaha Cp4, Kurzweil Forte, Nord Stage and Roland RD-800. Missing from the comparison in our opinion was the Privia PX-5S. So to even the playing field, we played and recorded the same riffs using sounds from the PX-5S. The other 4 instruments are 2-4x more expensive. Listen for yourself to see how the PX-5S stands up against the competition.
The PX-5S has a very powerful programmable arpeggiator. There are actually 4 of them, one for each Zone. One of the unique things the arpeggiator can do is send controller information in addition to or instead of notes. So if you every find yourself in a situation where you need a sound to pan left and right, or the filter to sweep in tempo the arpeggiator can do the trick.
Press and HOLD the Arpeggio button on the PX-5S to bring up the arpeggio menu. Press the EDIT button and you’ll see this.
Select the Parameter Menu. Here you can change the number of Steps and the length of each step. Scroll down and then you’ll find the option for Controller data.
Here you can set the Control Track to ONLY. This means that the arpeggiator won’t play repeated notes it will just send controller information. In the Control Type you can choose which controller you’re sending. If you scroll down one step further you’ll see the option to SMOOTH controller events. Rather than jumping from one step to the next, the PX-5S can smoothly move from one value to the other.
You can use KNOB 4 to set the Controller value for each Step. The Zone -/+ buttons allow you to move between each step.
Here is one application for this. In an electric piano sound I wanted the DSP effect to be distortion for an electric piano sound. I still wanted the Stereo Panning effect that is typical of a rhodes. The Arpeggiator saves the day. You can download this example here – http://www.casiomusicforums.com/index.php?/files/file/17-roadz-panamp/
<p>Sound Designer Dave Weiser has just completed a set of Vintage Keyboard sounds for the PX-5S. Dave is great at creating sounds that match the style of classic songs and recordings. This set features clavs, rhodes, wurlizters and even some pianets. These sounds area available for download at http://www.casiomusicforums.com and audio demos are here below:</p><p></p>
Version 1.11 is now available for the PX-5S. It is highly recommend that everyone install the update which has a number fixes including improvements to the phrase recorder, DSP EQ and some LFO timing. The editors have also been updated.