Roland AX-Edge Keytar Review


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The Roland AX-Edge 49-Key Keytar is a lightweight keytar synthesizer that combines all of the features we loved about the AX-Synth introduced in 2009, with updates that include a sleek, modern look and a bigger sound library.

AX-Edge is a lightweight 49-key synth that offers the quality and sound of a larger keyboard. It is loaded with innovative features to make it the most playable keytar ever. With this instrument, you’ll be able to play gigs with confidence and express your musical vision.

Why we recommend the Roland AX-Edge

For the serious yet adventurous keytarist, the Roland AX-Edge 49-Key Keytar is tailor-made for you.

Roland’s AX-Edge Keytar is an expressive 49-key synthesizer for the modern musician, featuring expressive controls, sleek design, and robust functionality.

The AX-Edge’s 49 full-size keys with velocity and channel aftertouch deliver an expressive sound and a wide range of tones. Its unique shape allows for freer playing, making it easier to reach the keys you want and nail those hard-to-reach chords and combos. It’s the first instrument of its kind dedicated to the needs of today’s serious yet adventurous keytarist.

Some may say the AX-Edge is a bit on the pricey side, but we think it’s definitely worth its price tag. It’s a workhorse of a keytar that features professional capabilities. It gives you more than any other keyboard in this range, with its neat sound enhancements and exciting set of presets. It’s easy to use, light enough to forget you’re carrying it and doesn’t require a music degree to make some fantastic music.

If you’re used to playing on stage, then the convenience of the AX-Edge will take your live show to another level. If you’re still getting used to the stage, this will give you the chance to practice and grow without investing in expensive equipment.

AX-Edge Features

Plug and play

The AX-Edge 49-Key Keytar is a plug-and-play device, making it a breeze to use. This is also one of the most beloved features from keytarists who have been using this particular model. It is perfect for live musicians who want to jam on the go. There’s no need to have a roadie for your setup because you can just strap it on, and it’s ready to play.

Unique and stylish design

AX-Edge was designed from the ground up with keytarists in mind. It has an arched aluminum top plate that adds strength, durability, and style. It comes in two stylish colors: a black keytar with a black Edge Blade or a white keytar with a gold Edge Blade.

And speaking of styling, the AX-Edge can be customized with interchangeable Edge Blades that let you change its look as easily as changing key signatures.

The Edge Blade is a great way to add variety. With this added design feature, you’re able to express yourself in ways no other keyboard can. The extra Edge Blade included in the box lets you match your performance needs with a minimum of fuss, and you can even create your own original designs.

Impressive sound set

The AX-Edge is equipped with Roland’s prime-quality technology. A new chain of high-end effects that help you achieve a polished tone in any situation. You can poise for performances and studio use with a quality tone.

Indeed, it is one of the most advanced keytar models available in today’s market with its impressive rig that offers plenty of keyboard action and groove.

Aside from its 49 velocity-sensitive synth-action keys and ZEN-Core sound generator, this keytar has innovative effects with 79 types of part multi-effects, 79 types of program multi-effects, 9 types of chorus, 7 types of reverb, part EQ, master compressor, and master EQ. It also has a built-in vocoder that you can layer with internal sounds.

You also have more control over your sound and a whole lot of value for the dollar, with its 320 programs and over 500 preset tones.

Innovative controllers

The AX-Edge is a powerful tool with many features, including full-sized keys, pressure-sensitive ribbon controller, modulation bar, knobs, faders, and more. The extra-large key zone, segmented controls, and all-new sensor pads also provide maximum playability.

A dedicated knob for each effect on the AX-Edge creates powerful, real-time control over any live performance. These buttons give you instant access to edgy leads, big fat basses, and all manner of keyboard sounds so that you can easily tweak your sounds on the fly to suit your performance or song.

The smooth ribbon controller can be used as an additional ax or assigned a unique set of notes to trigger. Pressing the multifunction buttons on the side triggers different effects when you play with dynamic control for sound creation or performance.

You also get an integrated playing experience with layers upon layers of sophisticated sound. With its superior touch response, you can make music with the exact sound you want instantly.

Thanks to its built-in Tone Remain function, the AX-Edge can switch sounds seamlessly in the middle of a performance. It allows you to perform without sudden stylistic shifts or note/effect dropping, in addition to seamless switching between all tones.

Wireless capabilities

The AX-Edge gives you sophisticated sounds, customizable touchpads, and an onboard arpeggiator with a dedicated knob for fast, real-time control. Innovative features combined with tried-and-true keyboard features give you a keyboard that’s always ready for the gig.

The AX-Edge also allows wireless sound customization that lets you make your music how you want it when you want it. Just connect the instrument to the AX-Edge editor app with Bluetooth MIDI and tweak your sounds wirelessly.

You also get great convenience as well as flexible performance possibilities. The AX-Edge leaves your hands free for playing and gives you easy access to switches on the upper left shoulder panel for instant sound variation with no delays.

It’s the perfect keytar for stage duties where you still have to contend with a loud band and crowd noise. This instrument is dedicated to keytarists who want an excellent stage performance that’s memorable and engaging to an audience.

Lightweight, portable, and reliable

Keytarists who want an instrument that can deliver power, versatility, and mobility – AX-Edge is the instrument for you.

This model features a dual-display system with dedicated screens, offering two distinct viewing areas that can be used simultaneously. The performance screen provides a graphic interface of parameters and functions, making it easy to adjust sounds during live performances. The control screen supplies ready access to volume, sound selection, and other performance essentials.

There’s no need for messy wires since you can play the AX-Edge for up to 4 hours of battery-powered operation. It also has a USB memory function that provides full backup capability. You will have the ability to back up your tones, parameter settings, and user data as needed.

Data from the AX-Edge can be backed up to a USB flash drive. You can also restore data from a USB flash drive back into the AX-Edge. This function is extremely helpful for the performing musician who is playing live and cannot afford to lose musical settings for any reason.

Pros and Cons

PROS

  • It has 49 keys, which are more than any other modern keytars on the market.
  • It has a big sound library.
  • It has a built-in vocoder.
  • It has a Bluetooth function which can make connecting to phones, tablets, laptops, and DAWs easier.
  • It has customizable Edge Blades.
  • The button placements make it easy to sustain notes, smoothly switch octaves, and play other sounds.
  • It has a built-in Tone Remain function that doesn’t cut off the sound when you change sounds.
  • It has digital screens that display different functions and system settings, making it easier to find the right sounds and functions.
  • It comes with an AX-Edge editor app to create and modify tones.

CONS

  • It needs a lot of batteries. Playing it on battery will only last 4 hours, so you must always have extra ones nearby.
  • Other players say the AX-Edge is too heavy, which can be strenuous if you want to play for hours.
  • It’s both larger and heavier than the AX-Synth.
  • It does not have a D-beam.

Conclusion

The Roland AX-Edge 49-Key Keytar is a ruggedly constructed instrument with high-end features that strike a good balance between affordability and versatility. It’s equally well suited for both performance and practice, making it an ideal choice for any musician in need of an all-in-one keytar solution.

The AX-Edge is not a perfect keyboard by any means, but it’s certainly one of the most exciting instruments in some time. The 49-key range makes this a lot more practical than other models with fewer keys on the market as well. It may cost just over $1000, but for that price, you get a pretty solid instrument that will put a smile on your face when you first use it.

AX-Edge’s features make it a valuable addition to virtually any environment, and it can give you the freedom you need to express yourself musically. Regardless of your instrument of choice, the AX-Edge is versatile enough to be used in any style imaginable.