We continue our greatest hits for 2018 with keyboards and DJ gear. Acoustic pianos are great but they can cost a small fortune and they’re not designed to be portable. Digital pianos and keyboards usually cost a lot less and some are compact and lightweight, making them the popular choice from beginners all the way to performing musicians. And with the rise of electronic music and production, workstations and DJ equipment are starting to become a mainstay in a musician’s arsenal.
The Nord Stage 3 is the third incarnation the immensely successful line of keyboards from the famed crimson red brand. The Nord Stage 3 Compact packs a load of practical functionalities for the performing musician, including a new A1 synth engine and C2D organ engine. Nord has forged a reputation for providing industry-leading instruments for use on stage or in the studio, and it’s no surprise the Stage 3 Compact is our top selling Nord for 2018.
This sleek, streamlined looking digital piano comes out tops as our best selling keyboard in 2018. The Roland FP30 is popular with players of all levels, from beginners to hobbyist to professionals. At under $1,000, the FP30 combines the feel of a traditional acoustic piano with modern appointments like Roland’s acclaimed SuperNATURAL sound engine for numerous sounds beyond the piano. Bluetooth connectivity and built-in speakers make it a perfect choice for those who need a digital piano for practice at home. Oh, and it even comes with a stand three pedal unit, making it sit perfectly in any home or studio.
The Roland GO:PIANO is the keyboard we recommend to anyone wanting to start out on keys. Out of the box, it comes with everything you need to get started – onboard practice features, Bluetooth wireless connectivity, integrated speakers. You can connect your phone and play along with lessons or jam tracks on its 61 full-size piano-style keys with authentic piano sounds and a variety of instrument sounds. It’s also battery powered, and its size and weight allow you to create music on the move.
The MPX16 is a great starter sampler and drum controller you can take anywhere. There are resonant filters for each of its 16 pressure-sensitive pads which trigger any samples you want on the SD card, making it perfect for drum solos or a fun jam session with friends. It’s small and light, perfect for carrying to the studio or to a gig, and it’s affordable price tag means it won’t break the bank.
The Numark DJ2GO is truly ultra-portable. It’s just about as wide as your laptop and will fit easily into any bag. But don’t go dissing its bite-sized appearance – this is no toy. It’s a stripped-down, bare minimum 2-channel MIDI controller, squeezed into the tiniest of boxes. It packs the majority of controls needed for mixing tracks and your usual crossfader and volume controls for each channel. At just $69, it’s easy to see why this flew off the shelves. Great as a gift for aspiring DJs or for those looking for some mixing fun while out and about.
Pick up the Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S4 MK2 and you’ll realise straight away its robust, sturdy build quality. The shiny aluminium jog wheel surface, the large multicolour backlit RGB buttons, these small and tactile features go a long way in adding to the over user experience. That aside, the S4 MK2 sports the popular dedicated Flux Mode buttons and iOS compatibility. It can even run from USB bus power so you don’t have to use its power supply. This 4-channel all-in-one DJ controller is a great plug and play option for both home and professional use. Even though Native Instruments released the S4 MK3 last year, the MK2 version is still popular and significantly lower in price.
Looking to buy a keyboard or start your DJ-ing journey? There’s one for everyone – head down to your nearest Swee Lee and give them a test. You can see more of our top selling keyboards and DJ equipment on our online store here.