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Korg Kronos X88: early impressions


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  • Korg Kronos X88: early impressions

    I've just purchased my first new keyboard in years. I was attracted to the Kronos because it is supposed to combine the features of a number of earlier synths from Korg, such as the Wavestation, Karma, M1, Polysix, and MS2000 along with many other features. Oddly, so far no one at Korg or related forums can tell me whether it is possible to port over programs from those earlier instruments, and at this rate I'm going to have to try and figure that out myself, because I was hoping this would enable me to reduce the number of keyboards I have since I remain top-heavy with gear. 

    The first thing you notice on the back is all the unused space that could have been used for more connections, etc.  From the front there is a huge amount of empty real estate (especially on the X88)  that i just know I'm going to wind up putting stuff on, that could have been used for addiitonal controls. However, if you've used any previous Korg keyboard over the past 25 years or so you can easily get rolling with this right away because the interface is familiar and consistent with earlier keyboards. The trouble is that so far it also doesn't sound all that different, despite all the updates and improvements. The sets that pop up when you first turn it on (it  takes forever to boot) aren't all that impressive, and the demos suck. There is a lot more under the hood, but what you first come across when you flip the switch just doesn't resonate much. 

    On the other hand the keyboard action is fine and piano-like, and the pianos do very good, but strings still sound like synth strings, and brass doesn't quite make it either. However, since you can load samples if you have anything better it is easy enough to port it over. The controls are all there for a Wavestation or Karma, so how about porting over programs?

  • #2
    No, you can't port any of that stuff over as the whole file structure is different. I wanted to port some Wavestation stuff over but the interface is so different I had to start from scratch. One good thing though - all the wavestation samples are in the Kronos. You'll have to figure out which samples were used in which WS performance and put them together in HD-1 Best of luck. I just wish they had included the Wavestation along with all the other synths but they figured you could do it all with HD-1. You never know - they might just do a Wavestation addon. On the other hand, porcine quadrupeds could possibly aviate.
    The Lone Arranger (and resident old guy)

    You can lead a horse to water, but you can't teach an old dog to make a silk purse out of a pig in a poke.


    • cybermooks
      cybermooks commented
      Editing a comment

      Bummer. Okay how about Karma from a Karma?

  • #3

    I think it is a little funny that you can load DX-7 patches into Mod-7.  AFAIK that is the only "vintage" synth that has a direct map into a Kronos patch.


    Otherwise the Kronos is yours to explore and program.  It could occupy my time entirely if I wanted... but I have way to much gear (more gear than time for gear) and a daytime job (and a wife, and kids... etc).  


    Are you, or have you purchased the Karma software?  I never got into that... another possible thing to take up time :smileylol:


    ...Music can be used to stimulate mass emotion, while mathematics cannot; and musical incapacity is recognized (no doubt rightly) as mildly discreditable, whereas most people are so frightened of the name of mathematics that they are ready, quite unaffectedly, to exaggerate their own mathematical stupidity.

    G.H. Hardy in A Mathematician's Apology (London 1941).