After graduating from college, I picked up a portable Yamaha CP20, and later added an SK20 Symphonic Ensemble. These were simple and direct. Only real disadvantage for a pianist was the 60 key limitation.

I used the CP20 and SK20 for many years, until I decided to upgrade to a Korg T1 in the late 80s. The Korg and I never got along – seemed to spend too much time trying to figure out a sound, playing with floppy disks, and not making any useful music.

In the mid 90s I sold the T1 for a used Steinway K54. Was the end of messing around with electronic music.

In late 2017 we were moving into a condo. No way the K54 was going to make it up to the third of fourth floor walk up. At that time the RD 2000 was new and competing against the Yamaha CP4. I also flirted with the Hammond SK1, which had pianos in addition to the organ.

GC in Tucson only had the RD2000, so I was not able to compare head to head. But everything seemed good enough, and they would match the online prices and packages, so I purchased the RD 2000.

The RD 2000 has great piano sounds and action, plus a lot of extras. It has a built in tone wheel organ, with drawbars. But I still wanted to get the complete feel of the organ controls (four up, etc.). I found this little app called MIDI Designer Pro, and was able to quickly build a organ control layout, including the 24 preset keys, etc. Once I got started, I realized that MDP2 allowed lots more control over the RD 2000. Roland puts a lot of capability into their boards, but so much of that capability is hidden behind small displays and cryptic menus. Spent some time building a number of layouts for RD 2000, until there was not much more to do.

Not long before COVID lockdown, somewhat on a whim, I purchased a Jupiter Xm, which had just been released. Even more capability than the RD 2000, but even smaller display and more cryptic (and deeper) menus. COVID lockdown meant I had lots of time to dig deeply into the Jupe.

Now sort of wondering what board is next for the deep dive and building the MIDI Designer control layouts.

I am sort of back where I was with the T1 – spending more time playing around than playing music. But at least I am learning a lot about the boards.