Motion Sound KP-500SN Reviews
Playing a keyboard through a mono amp is like watching a 3-D movie with one eye closed; it totally misses the point. Motion Sound makes some of the best-sounding stereo keyboard amps I've seen (or heard). You owe it to yourself, your keyboard, and your sounds to plug into one and hear what you've been missing.
from CA, USA
September 10, 2010Music Background:
STEREO!I've waited several months after purchase to write a review, in order to use the amp in a variety of venues, with several different bands. I have used a Motion Sound Pro 3T and Pro 3X for years, with another keyboard amp (not stereo) for Hammond XK-3 and various Roland synths and VK8. I no longer carry the Pro 3 real rotating horns, because the KP-500SN makes even the Hammond's built-in Leslie simulation sound big and fat and warm. My synths have come alive - especially stereo pan/wah/chorus patches. I've played several outdoor gigs and several indoor gigs of differing sizes, and the power has been plenty. The stereo XLR outs are easy and hi-fi. My bandmates have consistently said that they hear me better, like what they hear better, and don't miss the real spinning horn at all. I'm having a lot more fun playing music these days.
from Seattle, Wa, USA
April 11, 2010Music Background:
Semipro Musician (my night job).
A small(ish) amp with very big sound!I play guitar & guitar synth in a techno-metal band and our following is getting quite sizeable thus the need to upgrade for bigger venues. The plan WAS to aquire better stage volume with a (stereo) line out to the p.a. or to a slave. Well, with this thing, the line out/slave thing is now optional. It's sound is clear (deep) loud (tall) & huge (wide), the way the band describes it. For this kind of application, there's a lot of excellent solutions on the market. But, Motion Sound is without a doubt, the best keyboard/synth amplification available. Oh, and it's easy to pack around too. Cheers!
from Portland, OR USA
January 18, 2010Music Background:
the best keyboard amp I've ever heard!The Motion Sound KP-500SN stereo keyboard combo amp arrived on Friday and sounds fantastic. I ran my Yamaha Motif XS into the amp and tested out my favorite patches, especially the Full Concert Grand sample of a 9' Yamaha CFIIIS grand piano and was blown away with how real and accurate it sounded compared to an actual acoustic piano. This Motion Sound amp is by far the best amp I've ever used, and now I don't know why I suffered so many years with inferior mono keyboard amps from Roland, Alesis, and Behringer. I'll finally be able to enjoy playing jazz piano gigs with this setup instead of cringing and being forced to switch to a Fender Rhodes patch just to get a decent sound that doesn't annoy me. I'm very happy with my purchase!
October 27, 2009Music Background:
Professional Keyboardist and Pianist.
Motion Sound KP-500Sn - the HOLY GRAIL of sound for the gigging keyboardistI received the motion sound kp500sn about 2 weeks ago. This is the FIRST amplifier that I have ever had that was only limited by the quality of the sound that is input to it! The frequency response, control, richness, power and stereo sound is outstanding. It is very clean, bass to high response is excellent and it has the controls available to tweak to taste. I am currently running Pianoteq, Native instruments B4, Lounge Lizard rhodes, Omnisphere, and Sampletank from a notebook. WOW! The quality is amazing. The stereo expander is great for the piano, tremelo on the rhodes and the leslie emulation of the B4. For a while I gave up on keyboard amps and started using 2 peavey pr15a's to get a great, flat, full range rich stereo keyboard sound. Other keyboards amps were mono and did not offer the rich, flat response I needed. The kp500sn has raised the bar and set a new standard. It is also light (50lb) and has a set of wheels that are great for long hallways and big rooms. I have played keyboards for over 45 years and can highly reccommend this amp to EVERY keyboard player. It's worth every penny and will last you for years. I have NO criticism of this amp. My jazz trio gets great feedback where ever we play and I know that the kp50osn sound quality is a part of it
from North Bend, OR
June 17, 2009Music Background:
KP-500SNI just got this cabinet. I have not had a chance to gig with it. So this is a first impression. I'll run two boards through this cabinet: A Diversi Duo (Hammond clone), and a Roland RD700GX. I played it for several hours last night with the Roland. It is fairly straight forward: solid state, 250 watts per side stere amp with two channels, 500 watts total, integrated into a portable, 48 pound combo cabinet. Each channel has four 1/4" inputs, volume, expander, bass, mid and treble controls. In addition, there is a master volume and master bass cut/boost knob. As a really nice feature it has R/L XLR outs for your p.a., a mic input to channel 2, and outs for a slave unit and sub-woofer. Each channel is coupled to a 12" speaker and two horns. As a result, stereo piano samples come out sounding as they were intended. And the old suitcase rhodes piano panned vibrato sounds that panned from left to right are clear and present. It appears to have enough power, but I haven't played a rock gig with it yet. And it's quiet. Even at max volume settings the hiss is minimal. For jazz gigs it should be great. I'll let you know when I hook my organ whether it's got enough bass to kick left hand bass in a jazz trio without slaving a sub-woofer. Reports are that it can handle it at reasonable volume levels. This is a nice piece for the guy that wants fidelity, power, and doesn't want to load a bunch of heavy gear at 1:30 a.m., and wants to play his stereo piano samples and leslie simulation in stereo!
from Rutherfordton, NC
April 1, 2009Music Background:
Pro musician, live sound engineer
Better than ExpectedI own some of the best keyboards in the industry. I have three setups most keyboard players would die for. Each system is powered by QSC Powerlite Amps, biamp speakers, really a full blown sound system that would do a small club on it's own. I have trouble finding the space on most stages to spread it out, and get the full advantage of the stereo effect I worked hard to get. When I received the amp i was very surprised by how light is was. The controls are straight forward, and this amp really sounds good. I used the stereo expander about three forths open, and was very pleased with the image I got. I was playing through a Motif XS 8 which has the sonic power to give this amp a work out. No matter what program I tried, sequences included it rocked. Destined to be with me on a bunch of gigs in the future!
from Nashville, TN
June 7, 2011Music Background:
former pro kbd player, and glad to be out of it
Powerful Stereo AmpFor perspective, note that I have been playing a Roland RD700GX and Hammond XK-1 through a MotionSound KBR-3D for 2 years. I have never liked the sound (no "presence"), so I bought the KP500SN because (a) It has two separate and equal channels (no 1/2-baked rotary horn + crappy low-rotor simulator); (b) It has more low-end because of the 2X12's; (c) It's lighter; (d) It has more than double the power.
The crappy, brittle, mid-heavy, boxy Roland RD700GX pianos sound only marginally better on the KP500SN, only because the amp has better low end and is not as mid-heavy as the KBR-3D.
The Hammond XK-1 sounds much better, thanks to its built-in stereo Leslie simulator which sounds FAR better than the mono signal running through the KBR-3D's rotary horn and low-rotor joke simulator.
The KP500SN has two internal cooling fans. You won't know this unless you (a) read this ad; (b) open the amp.
I am not impressed with the four horns used in the KP500. My amp has two horns with annoying distortion artifacts- they crackle when the Hammond's fake Leslie is running..
The KP500SN also has several annoying buzzes and rattles. One was due to the grill, so I was obliged to add a 1/8-inch layer of foam behind the edge of the grill. Another annoying buzz is in the amplifier case, which I have not yet addressed.
In sum, I guess this thing produces a better stereo field than any other self-contained unit. I could have bought an EON set but then I'd have to fool around with more cables and stands and crap. So the KP500SN is a practical solution, but certainly not perfect.
I will probably add the MotionSound SW15 powered sub.
from Seattle, WA
March 12, 2010Music Background:
Serious hobbyist, 25 years playing
Not sure what all the fuss is aboutPerhaps it was my own experiance, but I ordered one of these untis expecting great things and was VERY disapointed. I owned this amp for about 2 weeks and had to return it. It's very loud but did not make my keyboards sound anything like all the other reviewers are raving about. The bottom end is terrible (it's there, but just sounds bad), and the highs are all but missing. This sounds more like half way between a keyboard amd and a guitar amp.
I finally returned it and got 2 QSC K12's and it BLOWS this amplifier away. I will submit that it's more of pain to carry two speakers around with some guitar stands that I prop them up on, but in terms of quality, there is NO comparision.
Now perhaps I had a shoddy unit and would love to hear another one of these amp's sometime, but I was not impressed at all and I've heard a lot of different keyboard amps. Definitly a step up from the Beringer, closer to on par with a Roland, and no comparision to my QSC's. I will say one thing, it is loud! :)