Korg’s new stage piano might just be the best you can buy...
Korg have historically not been very active in the stage piano field; at least at the more pro-oriented, expensive end of it. Their SV-1 ‘Stage Vintage Piano’ dates back to 2009, and though a worthwhile instrument (and still available) it’s inevitably showing its age. With competition as strong as it’s ever been in this market, a successor was clearly overdue.
Enter the Grandstage. These are unashamedly premium offerings, with both 88- and 73-note versions having Korg’s best RH3 hammer action keyboard, their flagship sound-engine technologies and friendly front-panel behaviour. They come with accessories too, including a music desk, decent half-pedalling-capable damper pedal and (unusually) a full-size and quite elaborate stand.
First, some physical characteristics. Casework is a mix of metal panels, plastic end cheeks and fibreboard base. The 88-note model weighs about 20kg, which is about as much as this reviewer can cope with (at least without loads of cursing). Build quality is good: everything fits together beautifully, there’s no creaking or twisting of the body, knobs are smooth and chunky, and rear-panel audio sockets are firmly anchored so that inserted plugs move very little.
On the back there’s a proper IEC mains inlet, a momentary power switch, stereo audio outs on XLR as well as unbalanced quarter-inch jack sockets, inputs for three pedals (expression, switch and damper), DIN MIDI in/out, and USB Type A and B sockets. The Korg logo illuminates in a range of colours (not least a lurid pink), can cycle through them if you wish, and even vary intensity in response to key velocity. Modest souls will be relieved to hear that ‘Off’ is an option too. A headphone socket sits on the front left panel.
Simply put, the Grandstage lets you play either a single sound or...
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