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Clavia Nord Electro

There is one thing that is certain: As the years pass it becomes more difficult for me to haul equipment around. Clavia, the Swedish instrument manufacturer, must have had me in mind when it designed the Nord Electro. This bright-red 61-key model weighs a quaint 17-plus pounds (the 73-key version tops out at about 20 pounds). But don’t be fooled by its size like I was. In this case very little is sacrificed. This little beauty delivers quality sound equal to many of its heavier competitors.

The Electro has a total of six keyboard sounds, customizable with a wide array of effects. All the controls are in your face, right on the front panel, which eliminates a lot of guesswork, except when trying to access stored programs. Due to the lack of an LCD display, you have to remember what piano sounds you have saved in the six program banks by number.

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