ABOUT CASIO KEYBOARDS
and
GLOSSARY

Casio's first electronic musical keyboards were introduced in the USA in the late '70s. Since then, Casio Computer Co. of Japan has created and manufactured hundreds of different musical instrument models in many shapes, styles, sizes and price ranges.

Casio's high quality sound, ultra high tech engineering and design, innovative features, reliability and affordable prices have generated estimated sales of well over 3 million instruments in the United States. Casio's literature proudly states they are the Best selling keyboards in America.

As of this writing, Casio's current model count is 30 different instruments, and we classify them in 4 basic categories of instrument types.

1. PORTABLES with 49, 61, 73, and 76, black and white, full size keys. All weigh less than 30 Lbs. without factory cartons. The 400 series and 500 series have songbanks of pre-programmed songs with an accompanying teaching system. The larger models of portables do not include the songbank, but have additional professional features, such as multi-track recording. They are designated as CTK models which stand for Casio Tone Keyboard, and the other series of larger models are WK models which means Wide Keyboard. The larger models have touch sensitive keys. Touch sensitive means when you strike the key lightly the sound is soft and when you strike a key hard the sound is loud. This feature makes the instrument to sound more like a real acoustical piano.

2. MAGIC LIGHTS PORTABLES, have flashing red lights under the keys to show which notes to play with your hands for the songs pre-programmed in the instrument's songbank. These models have the letter "L" designation which means they have the Magic Lights feature such as a LK-30 or CTK-620L models. The highest priced models have touch sensitive keys.

3. DIGITAL PIANOS are equipped with 76 or 88 note standard full size keys. The 88 note instruments are the largest and weigh from 78 to 178 pounds, not including a bench.
The 88 note instruments all have weighted keys (actual physical weight) which makes the keyboard feel like a traditional acoustic piano. The deluxe models even have a hammer type action which makes the keyboard respond like a grand piano keyboard. Of course, the larger instruments carry the largest price tag.

4. MINIATURE, SMALL and MID-SIZE KEY models with smaller than normal size piano keys are all under 5 Lbs. (We exclude from our offerings these small, miniature key and mid-size key models because they have very limited educational teaching materials/music songbooks available for the reduced number of keyboard notes. Plus, they are not cost effective: the cost of a regular 49 note full size key portable instrument is now in the $80.00 range! (10 years ago a 49 note keyboard would cost over $300 and back then it had far fewer features and inferior sound quality.)

Our company, Keyboards Today, focuses on categories 1, 2 and 3: Digital Pianos and the standard full size piano key models from both portable categories.

The full size key units have a huge selection of educational materials available such as specific model instruction, hundreds of songbooks, teaching videos, instruction kits, keyboard courses and computer software. All are designed to help you learn to play music, have fun with your Casio keyboard and are available from our company on this site.

Keyboards Today... presently offers 20 of the best of Casio's 30 different keyboard models for delivery nationwide at the best prices in the Country. Our wide selection of keyboards, plus over 200 additional accessory items and teaching materials, makes us the leader in model choices, advice, education and support of Casio keyboarders in America.

We invite you to download and print out, for your continued reference and understanding, our 9 page color catalog of Casio Keyboards and related products. The catalog is in PDF format so it can be viewed and printed on a PC or Mac using the free Adobe Acrobat Viewer (available on the Adobe web site). We'll also include a glossary of explanations of Casio keyboard terminology to help you with selecting the right instrument for your needs, application and budget. Click for the downloadable catalog section to get yours.

We highly encourage you to join millions of others who experience the creative fun and joy of making music with Casio's Fantastic Music Making Machines!

Keyboards Today sincerely wishes to be your on-line direct mail source for Casio Keyboards, accessories, teaching materials and related products. We hope our very specialized dedication to helping Casio users is obvious on our site and in our catalog so that you, too, will become another satisfied customer of Keyboards Today.


GLOSSARY OF KEYBOARD TERMS


AD-LIB Musician
In the CTK-500, the feature adjusts the entire keyboard so that any key you play matches the auto- accompaniment or Jukebox song being played. The entire keyboard consists of only correct notes!

Arpeggio
Has a series of preset 4-note arpeggios.

Auto-Accompaniment
System in which you can generate complete backgrounds with drums, bass, and chord parts with the left hand, while you play melodies and solos with right hand. 3 different systems are available: Casio Chord, Fingered Chord, and Full Range Chord (only on certain models).

Auto-Harmonize
Feature which adds chord notes of the auto-accompaniment to each note you play in the melody with your right hand.

Break Beat
Manually activated (rather than automatic) patterns which can be stopped instantly or retriggered anytime to create new or interesting patterns.

Casio Chord
Simplified auto-accompaniment system for the novice player. Ability to play chords not required.

Chord Memory
Memorizes a background pattern for you to play over, consisting of a sequence of left-hand auto-chord (Casio Chord or Fingered Chord).

Echo
A voice enhancing effect which provides a close echo of your voice as you sing. This gives a more professional sound, and obscures some mistakes and tuning problems for poor singers.

Effects, Reverb or Digital Signal Processor (DSP)
Sound enhancement device that adds spacious, large room effect to sounds and rhythms.

ELA
Expert Logic Accompaniment in the CTK-500, a new intelligent auto-accompaniment system that makes real-time decisions about the chords being played, and how they relate to each other. It creates a more musically logical and satisfying background.

Fingered Chord
Auto-accompaniment system for the more advanced player; actual chord formations are played and complete bass/chord/drum background pattern is generated.

Free Session
Automatic moving chord progression 4, 8, or 12 bars, so you have both hands free for soloing.

Full-Range Chord
Auto-accompaniment system that allows either the triggering of chords or the playing of the melody across the entire keyboard, depending on whether you play a chord or single note melody.

General MIDI
International standard layout for keyboard tones and other parameters, which ensures that all MIDI keyboards, modules and software from all manufacturers will be functionally compatible, and offers somewhat greater ease of use. Some CASIO units do not follow the General MIDI scheme, but are fully functional in most MIDI applications nonetheless. Most of the larger Casios are of the General MIDI design.

Graphic Equalizer
Expanded tone control, often 3, 5 or 7 sections. Gives you more control over the sound than a conventional bass/treble control.

Karaoke
Cassette machine with microphone for sing-along. The correct pronunciation is kah-dah-oh-kay. In Japanese, it literally means empty orchestra.

Layer
Allows you to stack two sounds together across the entire range of the keyboard, so both will sound on each key.

LCD
Liquid Crystal Display, a screen which gives an informative and attractive readout of keyboard functions. Display is often backlit, meaning there is a lighted screen.

Magi-Comp
Has chord progressions that change according to your phrasing of the melody.

Magical Light
Keyboard with illuminating keys, to guide your fingers to the correct note.

Magical Presets
In the Music Designer Series keyboards, a section that offers numerous interactive and fun ways to play along with automatic functions, such as: Free Session, Break Beat, Magi-Comp, Shadow Drum, Tone Cycle and Arpeggio.

Melody Off
Allows you to switch off the melody part of a preset song so you can play or sing the melody part over the preset accompaniment.

Memory (song)
Songs with multiple instrumental parts can be recorded directly into the keyboard.

MIDI
Musical Instrument Digital Interface -- language by which keyboards, other MIDI instruments, and computers can universally communicate.

Minus-One
The deletion of the melody lead so that user can manually play melody only, backed by full accompaniment

Mixer
A function that provides 16-channel control over volume, tone, panning, effects, tuning, and expression. Offers the versatility of a stand-alone mixer built right into the keyboard.

Modesty Panel
Piece of wood included with Digital Piano stands, to cover the back part of the unit.

Multi-Timbral
Defined as a MIDI instrument can reproduce more than one sound at a time when driven by a multi-channel MIDI sequence.

Multi-Track Memory
Songs with multiple instrumental parts can be recorded directly into the keyboard.

One-Touch Preset
Press this button after you select a rhythm style, and it will set the rhythm to the proper tempo and provide an appropriate melody sound automatically.

PCM
Pulse Code Modulation -- Digital recordings of real instruments or percussion sound sources.

Polyphonic
The number of notes that can be played simultaneously.

Real-Time Memory
The instrument records exactly what is played, in real time.

Registration Memory
Allows you to configure your keyboard with a particular sound, rhythm, volume setting, effect and other associated parameters, and store all the settings for easy recall at the press of a single button. These are custom One-Touch Presets.

Sampling
The digital recording of a sound, which can later be triggered by a keyboard or other device.

Sequencer
Feature, computer program, or stand-alone device that allows you to record MIDI note data and edit it.

Shadow Drum
Triggers a percussion sound with each note, forming a pattern as you play.

Split
Allows you to divide the keyboard into two sections with a different sound in each. Point at which the keyboard divides is often assignable.

Standard MIDI File
Note data that can be played on any MIDI keyboard. It is accessed by the keyboard either from a computer-based sequencer or, in the case of keyboards that have a floppy disk drive built in, directly from a disk. These files are generally in General MIDI format, but can be modified in your sequencer to play in non-GM keyboards as well. Song files are usually in either type 0 or type 1 format. Keyboards with built-in disk drives usually read type 0 files, since the data is compressed onto a single track, making it easier for the drive to read. You should try to insure that all your Standard MIDI files are in type 0 format, which you can do on your sequencer program.

Super Accompaniment
On smaller Casio keyboards, automatic background patterns over which you can play any white note melody. On larger models, Super Accompaniment plays a suitable 4, 8 or 12-bar chord progression for each auto-rhythm, a great feature for jamming.

Tone Bank
Indicates that Casio keyboards can produce a wide variety of instrument types, and that these sounds are organized into Banks for easy reference or call up.

Tone Cycle
Layers four sounds across the keyboard, and triggers them in succession to yield a new sound each note you play.

Touch Response
Similar to a piano, the harder you strike a key the louder and brighter the sound. Allows for more expressive playing.

Transpose
Allows you to change the pitch of the keyboard into another key. Eliminates awkward fingerings in difficult keys, and lets the keyboard be adjusted for singers, and wind and other instruments..

Tuning
Lets the keyboard be fine tuned for play along with recorded material or other instruments, whose pitch may be very slightly out of tune with the keyboard.


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