Electronic keyboards have become a huge part of today’s musical, often replacing traditional pianos and other sorts of instruments in many settings (such as churches).
The rise in the popularity of the keyboard is a result of the many advantages that keyboards offer over non-electric instruments. They can be easily adjusted to produce a range of sound that can be heard above or in pitch with other instruments.
They can also be programmed to reproduce the sounds of many different instruments, including common ones like the guitar and rare instruments like the harp or the English horn. The ability to incorporate these different musical tones into standard music means that keyboards can offer musicians and audiences alike a whole new tone to the occasion.
The term electronic keyboard actually refers to any electronic device that has keys resembling those of the piano, including digital pianos, the synth, and the electric organ.
Inside the Keyboard
Most keyboards resemble the piano at first glance. The black and white keys, the pedals, and even sometimes the structure are all based on the model of the piano. Where keyboards are radically different are in their inner and outer workings.
All keyboards are designed not only to reproduce the music of the piano, but of several other instruments as well. Synthesizers, for example, come in many different forms, and are considered to be keyboards at a very basic level.
Keyboard structures can be very complex, depending on the level the musician is playing at. Often, high end keyboards will include the following features:
- Sequencers Sequencers record and play back MIDI data to the musician or the mixer.
- Samplers Samplers use recordings of instruments to combine the effects and replay instruments due to installed software.
Outside the Keyboard
Keyboards project their sound through the use of amps. These amps can be included on board the keyboard, and often players will hook up to an outside amp specially designed for keyboards as well. Keyboard amps are designed to fully reproduce the whole range of notes that the keyboard entails.
Keyboards may also be sold with several different input devices. These input devices allow the player to load extra data into the keyboard for musical recordings, or in the case of digital pianos or synthesizers to add to the database of sound.
Many people also include a keyboard with their workstations, when they are serious about mixing and recording music.
Of course, many players will remind you that none of these accessories are quite as important as remembering the items that will assist you in playing and in safely storing your instrument, such as keyboard stands and keyboard cases!
The range of instruments that we call keyboards is really quite incredible.
Basically, the thing to remember is that the term refers to the representation of musical note production via the keys of the board; just like the piano.
In fact, pianos are known as keyboard instruments. These keys are a handy reference not just in traditional piano playing but also in the modern production of various sounds through digital processes.