Casio CTK Review

The Casio CTK-2100 is a low-cost keyboard with a 61 piano-style key layout. It includes a USB port for general MIDI support. This keyboard is aimed at beginners, with a Step-up learning system that gives instructions on how to play.

The positives:

Plenty of features and functions for the price. 150 rhythms, a sampling function, a voice pad function, and the ability to connect a CD or MP3 player via the audio input so that you can play along to your favorite song on the keyboard. It has a step-up learning system that makes it easy to hear the progress made in your playing skills.

It has hundreds of pre-programmed songs that break down and show you how to play them exactly, note by note. A really great teaching aid.

  • New Voice Pad function
  • New 48-note polyphony AHL sound source
  • 400 Tones, 150 Rhythms
  • New StepUp lesson system
  • Sampling Function, Audio-in Terminal for mp3-Player

The negatives:

This is a beginner keyboard at a budget price. Therefore the key weight is light. You may hear noise from the keys when you press them. You cannot affect the tone by pressing the keys hard or easy – as with a real piano or more expensive keyboard. But this is not a big deal to most people buying a keyboard in this price range.

  • The headphones can be difficult to figure out (premium package).
  • The stand can be difficult to put together (premium package).
  • The LCD is not very bright which requires good lighting to see.
  • Occasional packaging issues.

The Casio CTK-3000has a 61 Key Piano Style Touch Sensitive Keyboard, 400 total onboard Tones, 150 Rhythms and Digital Effects. It has the Step-up Lesson System, audio inputs for a MP3 player, USB port for MIDI implementation and a pitch wheel.

The positives:

The touch sensitive keys makes it more like playing a real piano and therefore a good value for the price.

  • Plenty of onboard tones, rhythms, and effects for the price.
  • Digital readout is easy to see.

The negatives:

  • The keys are light and can be prone to noise, as with any inexpensive keyboard.
  • The holder for the music on the keyboard isn’t the greatest.
  • Does not come with a/c adapter.

The Casio CTK-4000 is an affordable instrument with a 61 Key Piano Style Touch Sensitive Keyboard, 570 total onboard Tones, 180 Rhythms and Reverb plus Chorus Digital Effects. Packed with great features such as Casio’s famous Step-up Lesson System, audio inputs for a MP3 player and a USB port for MIDI.

Featuring a 61 note keyboard with Piano Style, Touch Sensitive keys, 570 sounds, 180 rhythms, Reverb and Chorus Digital Effects, built-in USB and an audio input for an MP3 player.

The positives:

Doesn’t feel as cheap as some of the more inexpensive models.

  • Quality digital sounds
  • Plenty of volume with a full, rich and improved sound than lesser models (AHL and arpeggiator).
  • Velocity sensitivity aka Touch response (note that velocity sensitivity is the speed with which you hit the keys, not the pressure with which you hit the keys).
  • 48 note polyphony (24 note for dual-layer tones like Strings Piano)
  • Split function: divide the keyboard into 2 zones, anywhere. Supports octave shift (1 octave) of each zone.
  • Layer function: layer 2 sounds for a rich effect. Layer effects on only right-side zone if split function is active. If using Dual-layer tones, up-to 4 instruments sounds are produced simultaneously.
  • Adjustable Reverb (10 levels), Chorus (5 levels), Key Transpose (12 notes), Octave shift (2 octaves) Pitch tuning (approx 100 cents), preset scales (16 scales)
  • Auto-Harmonize function: 12 types, adds additional notes to your playback, active only if auto-accompaniments are active.
  • 90 Arpeggiator Patterns: Up, Down, U/A Type A, U/D Type B, Random. Arpeggio Hold function.
  • 305 Music Presets: Based on popular songs, the tone(s), rhythms, tempo and other settings are available as presets on the keyboard. Just select the preset and start playing. Songs include Careless Whispers, How Deep Is Your Love, Killing Me Softly
  • One-Touch Rhythm Presets: Upon selection of a rhythm, activate Rhythm preset to automatically select the suitable tempo and tone. Very useful if you are moving from Trance (140 bpm) to Slow Jazz (80 bpm) and don’t feel like hammering the tempo button 60 times or pressing multiple keys to change the tone from Synth to Sax.
  • Full Range Chord: In this mode the keyboard recognizes and plays the chords if any 3 keys are pressed anywhere on the keyboard. Selecting chords is not limited to the Left-zone of the keyboards anymore. Very useful for Harmonium players of India who typically play melody using chorded formation.
  • Indian tones (15) & rhythms (7 types)
  • Great training features and onscreen help.

The negatives:

  • No weighted keys
  • No pitch wheel
  • No stored settings of music can be saved.

The Casio CTK-5000 is the flagship of the CTK-series. Featuring a 61 Key Piano Style Touch Sensitive Keyboard, 670 total onboard Tones, 200 Rhythms and Reverb plus Chorus Digital Effects. Packed with great features such as Casio’s famous Step-up Lesson System, audio inputs for a MP3 player, pitch wheel for additional expression over sounds, Line Outputs and a USB port for MIDI. All this makes CTK-5000 more realistic and expressive than ever before at this price range.

Featuring a 61 note keyboard with Piano Style, Touch Sensitive keys, 670 sounds, 200 rhythms, Reverb and Chorus Digital Effects, built-in USB, line outputs, a pitch wheel for greater expression and an audio input for an MP3 player.

The Positives:

  • Better action on the keys than from the lesser models. Keys seem to be somewhat weighted. Keys are less noisy than the lesser models.
  • Acoustic sounds are realistic.
  • Speakers are great – very loud with no noise.
  • Great ability to layer sounds.
  • A fantastic selection of 90 harmonies & arpeggios.
  • Full range chord feature (keyboard automatically selects the right chord).
  • 32 Registration Memory (store keyboard settings like Tone, Style, Tempo, Layers and recall at the touch of a button.
  • 800+ sounds.
  • XLR outs.
  • Recorder: 6 tracks x 5 songs, 1 lesson song, approximately 12,000 notes total.
  • Metronome.
  • Pitch wheel added.

The Negatives:

  • Time consuming access and programming.
  • Manual is not entirely clear on some subjects.

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