NAMM 2016: Casio MZ-X: A New MZ-2000?
The image below recently turned up on the internet. Based on the text and the accompanying specifications, we assume that Casio is trying to lure us to their NAMM booth so they can present their latest keyboard/synthesizer: the MZ-X. This will likely remind keyboard enthusiasts of the MZ-2000, an old Casio model that, considering the words 'Reinvented, Reimagined, Reborn' is apparently about to be brought back to life. Rumour has it that two models will be released, the MZ-500 and the MZ-1000, but take that with a grain of salt; it's very possible that MZ-X is indeed the final name for this workstation.
Keyboard and synthesizer
The original image features a short list of specs: over 1,000 new sounds, a handy 5.2" colour touch screen (like on the PX-560 piano), hundreds of accompaniment styles, Flash Sample memory, virtual tone wheel organs and a remarkably powerful 40W speaker system. If the MZ-X is indeed based on the MZ-2000, then we can also assume a combination of keyboard and synthesizer functionality, allowing you to either pick one of the many impressive preset voices, or dive into the synthesizer parameters to adjust them to suit your preferences. Finally, there are also the sixteen pads that are visible in the picture.
Among the MZ-2000's most interesting features were the aftertouch functionality (allowing you to adjust the sound by exerting pressure on the key after pressing it) and the 17-track sequencer that allows you to build your own songs one layer at a time. Furthermore, it also had various digital effects like reverb and chorus. Now, we're going out on a limb here by stating that the MZ-2000's floppy drive probably won't be making a return, likely being replaced by a USB port, for instance. All in all, an intriguing announcement by Casio, which could mean that they're ready to take on brands like Yamaha, Roland, Korg and Kurzweil, which already have similar elaborate workstation in their assortments.
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