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Evolution Mk-249
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maxabbey maxabbey
Publié le 11/11/06 à 11:15
Value For Money : Excellent
Audience: Beginners
My opinion on this keyboard is similar to that of my predecessors ...

What motivated me to buy? Its price! To use that I wanted to make (test of my sound banks and SoundFont before it notes by ModPlug Tracker), I wanted a master keyboard cheap, simple but "modern" (dual USB and MIDI) and quality and I found it.

It has a very good value for money, especially when I bought it (January 2004 if I remember correctly): € 140 new at Backline & Pianos in Lyon (delivered at home by carrier) with a stand Stagg KXS-A4 (handy) and shipping, I had € 184 in total, which represented, I believe, at an average price of the keyboard alone at the time.

It has everything (me) is: 49 keys with touch dynamic, a pitch bend wheel and two assignable knobs (which can change the function): By default, a rotary knob to change the modulation and a flat slider to change the volume of notes sent.

It also has two buttons + / - to change the octave, a key to transpose the notes, keys to change the channel, program and bank (MSB and LSB) active, and ten-key memory. Also on the menu, music demonstration, a GM reset function and a MIDI Out from USB.

Connections on the back side, it has an input for sustain pedal, a MIDI out for connecting to another MIDI device or sound card type expander (the MIDI cable is supplied), output to connect via USB (the cable is supplied, but I have an assistant extension because it was a bit short) and an input for AC adapter (optional, for cons, I think, but if you connect it via USB to your PC, it is self-powered and you can do without).

It comes with software for learning and creativity, but I&#39;ve never used :-)


As already mentioned, the touch is very soft, but in this price range at the time, we could not really hope to reach a hammer. Anyway, you get used to and then, as my first keyboard ... I remember that at first I could not get a maximum velocity when I press a button usually ... Today, it&#39;s going a lot better! And yet I am far to use it regularly ...

Anyway, if you&#39;re embarrassed (e) the sensitivity of the keys to velocity, you can work around the problem by assigning, for example, the controller MIDI "velocity" (No. 132) to one of two assignable knobs (knob modulation or volume slider), you turn this knob to maximum, and voila! All notes are played at the speed you set the knob, regardless of how hard you hit the keys ...

This keyboard is easy to handle, I did not need the manual to learn how to use it, everything is clear if one knows the principles of the MIDI standard (operating channels, programs, or patches, banks .. ..), the small screen of three characters (the blue version 2 of the keyboard I have, but I think they were red on the first version - it must be that represented by the picture on AudioFanzine) is also handy to know what is fact, despite its small size (the characters blink when you edit or change a setting, it always shows the number of the selected MIDI program ...).

A really nice too, found on most MIDI instruments, there is a sticker on the right of the keyboard, next to the buttons (see photo) which lists the 128 General MIDI patches, categorized with their number and the list of controls supported by the MIDI keyboard that you can assign the mod wheel or slider for volume. This is very useful to remember the number one MIDI instrument, if memory hole :-)

I regret perhaps, is the quality of bundled software, but I did almost not served, so I can not really judge. It is proprietary software developed by Evolution (no software known as Cubase for example), they are quite well done and complete for what I&#39;ve seen (there are among other learning software and a sequencer, I think ), but they are quite unstable on my config (Windows XP, P4 3 GHz), they often plant so I do not keep a great souvenir. However, I must admit they seemed very complete and well done (especially the learning software, but I have not really used). Needless to say, they fit perfectly with the keyboard. Interface with a less old-fashioned (I thought Windows 3.1 when I tried!) And better stability with a machine recently, they would be perfect ... I&#39;d have to try again one day. My opinion might change ...

Nothing to say at the drivers, however. It is well recognized in Windows XP (there may be no need for drivers MIDI or USB, but as a driver is provided, why not install it?) And you can access its MIDI Out as a standalone device from any MIDI compatible application (Winamp, vanBasco&#39;s Karaoke Player, etc..), which allows you to play MIDI files on a device connected to the MIDI Out.


I use it since January 2004 if I remember correctly, and I do not regret my purchase.

It is comprehensive, robust (mine has no material defect, the person who had problems with - see the reviews above - is certainly came across a "bad" copy), it is beautiful (even if it is a matter of taste, the design is really simple and all-purpose), it is light enough, it can be easily (I think this is the case with all the keyboards of this type).

Which is very significant, too, is its USB connection, which eliminates the need for an AC adapter (fortunately, because it is not provided, it seems), it is self-powered (even PC off, it stays on but there is an on / off switch ...)

This keyboard is perfect for beginners, especially if it&#39;s a first keyboard and the price is largely up to the features it offers. I highly recommend it if you want to smooth music, especially since it comes with a software learning more than adequate, although the bundled software does not really seem to be the height of keyboard (but I repeat, I would have to test them deeper to make me a real idea, I do not like sequencers!).

I would do without that choice issue, I really have no complaints. I do not know if the competition offers better today, but this one, anyway, is for me a safe bet.