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Akai AX-80
Overall Rating
Submitted: August 17th, 2003
by Kevin Snowden
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Sound Quality
The AX-80 is a synthesizer. It will not sound like a piano, brass, Hammond B3, string orchestra, etc., since it is not a sampler. However, it can generate some very pleasing, thick synthesizer sounds that really do not sound like other synthesizers of the 1970's to mid-1980's. I have programmed several sounds in it that are reminescent of the Yamaha CS series. The AX-80 works well in the classic rock context for pads and solo type sounds. The velocity sensitive keyboard is a plus for the internal sounds and for driving my MIDI modules.
Reliability/Durability
Everything on it works fine. I think that it is built like a tank. I am relying on it now without a backup. That's pretty good for an instrument that is nearly 20 years old!
Price/Value
General Comments
I probably wouldn't buy another AX-80 because this is the only one that I have ever seen. I found this unit at a pawn shop and it had a nice case that caught my eye. Also, this synth was a "9 out of 10". It had only a few scratches on the side panels. It is definately worth the $135 that I paid for it. I would advise others to look around at other keyboards if someone is trying to sell one of these for over $200. I would also make sure that everything works on the unit since it is so old. It may be difficult to fix. I've been in the business for about 25 years now. I am currently playing the AX-80, Roland XV-88, Peavey SP, Peavey Spectrum Bass, Roland Jv-880, Alesis Nanopiano. I also use an Akai MIDI note separator with the AX-80 as it is driving the Peavey SP and Alesis.
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