on 2 September 2012
I've been playing guitar from more than 20 years, only recently I decided it's time to learn some keyboard. After some month of juggling with a midi controller (mpkmini) I thought it's not good for learning, due to it's limited number of keys. So I decided to buy a keyboard, I looked around for the best to fit my needs.
As said before I play guitar, not a "hero" but I'm not new to music. I also have 3 child (11,9,3) with the older starting to learn some instrument at school very soon, but he seems being not interested in music at all.
So I choose to buy this EZ220 for some reason:
- touch sensitive. A minimun for me. I suppose is really different from weighted keys, so if you are a serious student you should look at something different, but with non sensitive keys you will not learn to use strenght on the keyboard.
- usb port. I want to use it as a midi controller for piano parts and for recording in midi format.
- good quality. It's branded yamaha, that's ok.
- good sound. A lot of cheaper keyboard doesn't have good sounds, I can say yamaha are ok.
- a lot of sound. The ez220 come with something as 390 sample. Fine!
more, the ez220 come with other 2 feature, lightning keys and an iPad app.
The iPad function it's not interesting for me as I'm not a lucky apple owner. It's just an app who communicate wirelessy with the ez220 and turn pages of the music sheet for songs included on the keyboard (it has 100 song to practice with). Pity is it is not possible to add new song. The app also can register your performance via iPad mic... not a big deal I think, I can use any other device for this. But obviously if you already have an iPad it's a plus.
To me the lightning keys are really more interesting.
It's true that you can play something just after turnig on the instrument.
Ther's a function that wait for you to play the right key during a song, and being lighted up make really easy to play something. Ok, this is not a real deal for learning as you will always be in late for playing, but give you enough satisfaction for go further, and let you gradually learn a song. It's also good for my son I told before, who at least is now curious.
Of course you can turn off the light effect.
The instrument itsef has its learning program (yamaha call it Y.E.S), that's the same for many other keyboards from the producer (lights apart), but I found that using it with the PC and the almost free sofware synthesia it's really much better. With synthesia you play with midi files, and due to the facts is really easy to find midi files on the internet (both free or not) you can learn to play almost every song.
Last but not least I've found very useful the function for learning chords: in the last octave you choose the root, then you have 3 octave reserved for the type of chord (min7 or aug or whatever, any key on the the octaves has his meaning that you can see above the key, unfortunately it's black on black so you need a good light), finally the first octave will show you with light which keys are used in that chord. EZ!
Conclusion: really nice for starter and for kids. If you are already good in playing you should consider something else, similar products from yamaha are cheaper (psr 333 for instance) or you should look for something more professional (piaggero n11 or better, for instance).
But this is a really nice product. The only thing I can complain is that you can't register your perfomance internally as other keyboards do.
on 19 March 2013
I love this. I've just recently started learning the piano and I find this keyboard very helpful! I connect it to my computer and I have it running with a program called Synthesia. The keyboard works wonderfully with this program! It only has 61 keys, but most of the time that is enough. There is a lot of sounds to choose between, I found it most amusing that I can play with ocarina sounds!