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OK, Casio. We gotta talk about the Casiotone CT-S1000V.
Like we said in our other review this month, you’ve been quietly killing it. But if we can be honest, and provide some constructive feedback? These products deserve better names. That’s all we’re saying.▼ Article continues below ▼
You’ve got a brand-new way to approach vocal synthesis, you drop it on the world for under $500 and I’ve got to look up the letter-number combination that makes up the model name every time I want to tell someone about it. How about: the “Casio Voice”? Simple, no?
Names aside, where do we stat? How about with something you haven’t seen or heard before? Nah, let’s get the boring stuff out of the way. It’s a standard black keyboard chassis, it’s got 5 octaves, it has built-in speakers, a pitch wheel, and some knobs. You know the drill.
Now, the good stuff. The vocal magic. Talk or type your lyric sheet into the app, connect it to the [insert model number that I’m too lazy to look up again here] and start playing the keys to see what it comes up with. You can custom-craft the vocal style to match your song, and it’s wild. Like, seriously wild stuff. I’ve never seen anything like this before, and as much as I usually hate companion apps, this one was worth the installation. I’m a big vocoder fan, so I was already half-way sold before this even arrived, truth be told.
You can tell it how to play the notes back, either rhythmically, syllable by syllable or by phrase, and you’re off with vocoders, talk boxes, convincing choirs and more. At first, we sort of thought it would be a bit gimmicky, but once you start playing around, it just kicks the creative juices into high gear.
Now, will this replace your lead singer? No, of course not. Will it add some cool tricks to your backing tracks? You bet. Have we ignored just about every other feature of this keyboard because we spent most of our time fooling around with the vocal app stuff? Of course. Will we continue asking and answering our own questions? That remains to be seen.
What doesn’t remain to be seen, though, is just how cool and FUN this is. We’ve been diving headfirst into all the synths we can get our hands on lately, and a lot of them have been leaving us cold: chiefly because it’s a lot of the same.
So, when something refreshing comes along, we take notice. You should too. Check this one out, it’s a trip.
something new for your keyboard rig! Like, actually new, not an other clone or Eurorack module you’ll never use!