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Casio WK-225 - 76-Key Portable Keyboard

About.com Rating 3.5 Star Rating

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Casio WK-225.

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The Bottom Line

This is a portable machine meant for fun and light recording – and with 76 keys, it’s also an inexpensive way to familiarize yourself with the layout of the piano keyboard. But, if you want to eventually master the acoustic piano, the keys on this model might put you at a disadvantage because of their size, weight, and strange touch-response (see Keys & “Action”, below).

Pros

  • Has 600 voices + 8 of your own
  • Can record up to 10 songs
  • Built-in lessons, challenges & chord guides
  • Lightweight at just over 15 lbs.

Cons

  • AC power supply not always included (see Accessories, below)
  • No sustain pedal included
  • Awkward touch-responsivity (see Keys & “Action”, below)

Description

  • Keys: 76
  • Polyphony: 48-note; 24 for some voices
  • Touch Sensitivity: 2 velocity settings, or off
  • Reverb/Chorus: 10 reverb settings; 5 chorus
  • Arpeggiator: 90 types
  • Metronome: Yes; 30-255 BPM
  • Available Colors: Silver

Review - Casio WK-225


Price: $200-$300 (usually found around $200 now; shop around)

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Keys & “Action”:

Simply put, the keys on the WK-225 keep its rating stars down. While it’s normal for most lightweight, portable keyboards to have keys that are smaller and thinner than the solid, weighted ones found on heavier digital models, the keys of Casio’s WK line (at least the older portables) seem to feel particularly artificial and slippery. For anyone used to acoustic or other weighted keys – or those expecting to eventually play on them – you’ll experience a huge contrast in touch.

* The touch-sensitivity on th WK-225 is dependent on how quickly a note is pressed, and not only how hard you touch the key – a method I find to be confusing for ear-hand coordination, and one that may hinder the development of more refined dynamic techniques on the piano.

Keyboard “splitting” – the ability to assign two different tones on either end of the keyboard – is supported, and the exact split point may be changed (see “dual-layering,” below).

Transposition from -12 to +12.


Voices:

600 tones are built-in, plus you can record up to 10 external sounds and convert them into custom voices. Effects that can be added include looping, vibrato, tremolo, and pitch alterations.

Available tones include:

  • 31 Acoustic pianos
  • 32 Electric pianos
  • 52 Organs; pipe, jazz, accordion & more
  • 60 Guitars; 30 treble and 30 bass
  • 54 Strings & orchestra ensembles
  • 73 Brass, synth-brass & woodwind
  • 15 Bells, vibes & pitched percussion
  • 17 Drums
  • 45 Synthesizers

… and plenty more.

Dual-layering (configuring the keyboard so that one key can sound two tones simultaneously) is supported; if the keyboard is split, layering will affect the right side of the split point only.


Pedal Fuctions:

An external footswitch may be programmed to produce the effects of the damper, sostenuto, or una corda pedals, or to activate a background rhythm. For compatible pedals which must be purchased separately, see Accessories, below.


Preset Songs:

There are 102 preset songs (mostly traditional tunes, some Christmas songs, and several classical piano movements); and, as part of the built-in lessons, an additional 50 exercise songs in three playing-levels are included.

Up to 10 of your own personalized songs may be recorded and stored. The total memory allocated to custom songs is 320kb (which Casio equates to about 12,000 notes).


Keyboard Speakers & Quality:

The two on-board 2.5W speakers sound clear, and hold up really well at moderate to high volumes in the bass octaves. An external amplifier may also be connected (see Inputs, below).


Included Accessories:

Package includes:

  • Free song book
  • Music rest

9V AC adaptor not usually included; ask your retailer. Casio recommends power adapter model # AD-E95100L ($15-$25). Keyboard may also be powered up to five hours with 6 D batteries.

Optional accessories which may be purchased separately include:

  • Sustain footswitch (model # SP-3) – $15-$25

  • Piano-style sustain pedal (model # SP-20) – $30-$40

  • X-style keyboard stand (model # ARDX) – $30-$40


Inputs:

○ 1/4" headphone/audio OUT jack
○ 1/8" audio IN
○ 1/4" mic IN
○ USB (cable not included)
○ Sustain pedal input, 1/4"


See More Casio Instrument Reviews:

■ Privia PX-130 - 88-Key
■ LK-165 - 61-Key Lighted Keyboard
■ CDP-100 - 88-Key
■ WK-500 - 76-Key
■ WK-7500 - 76-Key

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