W-Audio today introduced a new MIDI keyboard controller that they describe as ‘a game changer’.
The Whole Tone Fixed-width keyboard MIDI controller features a unique keyboard layout that maintains a consistent relationship between black and white keys across the full range of the keyboard. By standardizing the key relationships, the whole tone fixed-width layout makes playing intervals and chords consistent, no matter what key you play in.
“Many musicians don’t realize that the standard musical keyboard was originally designed to slow down players,” notes designer Ellen Qwerty. “Early organs and harpsichords had mechanical limitations not found in modern electronic instruments. If you played notes on two adjacent keys in short succession, the mechanisms would become entangled.”
“The whole tone fixed-width design is derived from the Dvorák Standardized Keyboard, created by composer Antonín Dvorák in the late 19th century,” explains Qwerty. “While this keyboard was impractical in Dvorák’s day, today’s technology makes it not only possible, but desirable.”
Practicing Scales Now ‘A Thing Of The Past’
The new keyboard simplifies learning to play by eliminating the need to learn fingerings and practice scales, according to the designer.
“Why is learning the violin or the guitar so easy? It’s because there is a consistent relationship between intervals, no matter what key you play in.
Traditional keyboards focus on making the C major/A minor scale and the black note pentatonic scale easy to play. While that may be OK for new age artists, most modern genres emphasize chromaticism and alternate scales.
The traditional keyboard makes learning to play in other keys difficult, because every key uses different fingering. Our new keyboard eliminates that, making learning scales and practicing things of the past.”
In addition to the unique keyboard, the new keyboard offers drum pads, control knobs and DAW transport controls.
- 25-note whole tone fixed-width keyboard
- 8 dynamic drum pads & 8 rotary controllers
- USB powered
- Standard transport controls
- Keyboard layout maintains consistent relationship between black & white keys
- Ideal for prog, jazz and 12-tone music.
- Practicing and learning scales are no longer necessary.
Note: W-Audio does not recommend the Whole Tone Fixed-width keyboard for playing new age music.
Pricing and availability are to be announced.