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Korg M3 61 Reviews

4.5 stars based on 11 customer reviews

Sweetwater Advice

  • Nick Church

    This instrument is both excellent and addictive. It should carry a "This Product Can Seriously Enhance your Music" warning!

  • Yuval Fuchs

    My new baby!! OK...how can I put this into words... When I sit down with my M3, a minute doesn't go by and I start swaying with the music. The M3 dynamically reacts to my playing like an acoustic instrument but at a much deeper level as literally every button, knob, fader and physical aspect of it is part of the instrument and the music making experience. It feels logically connected to me and my creative spirit. I cannot say this about any other music workstation in this price range. The M3 has captivated me and I'm utterly under its spell. Thank you Korg for bringing another true innovation home.

  • Danielle Cummings

    I've never really gotten into keyboard workstations, but did this thing ever change my mind! It was so fun going through all the combinations and programs, seeing what I could come up with. I especially enjoyed the X/Y "Kaoss Pad" touch screen. If you want to get the creative juices flowing, look no further than the M3!

  • from Columbia River Gorge Mountains WA State January 13, 2012Music Background:
    Recording studio owner - Recording Artist Heartflight

    Killer Keyboard work station M3-61

    I own the Korg Karma, Now the M3-61 between the two have created 3 new CD;s Nativce American/ new age/ Rock Jazz etc. If you have a professional knack to create music from scratch these are for you. Nice machines. Great sounds . Can't go wrong with Korg. Sweetwater was nice and easy to work with and no hassle shipped immediately to studio. Purchased over phone. Great service and warranty provided. Price was fair and reasonable. Bettereal than Guitar Center and had been doing business with them 20 something years!
    Love mind blowing keyboards? Try This or Kronos or Karma..........

  • from North Canton, OH November 4, 2011Music Background:
    Trombonist, Director of Bands, University of Mount Union

    A Beast for Composition and Music Expression

    At first you might think you want more sample RAM, like the Motif XF or Kronos,, or that you want fully-featured digital audio recording. And if that's important to you, then do check out the Motif XF or Kronos, but the Korg M3 Xpanded is perhaps the best music composition workstation on the market in terms of features, price, stability, and interactivity with a computer DAW.

    If you already work with an excellent DAW (Pro Tools, Digital Performer, Cubase, Logic) and you are looking for a keyboard workstation where you will begin your creative journey, then I believe this is the best thing going. Many of us who compose, arrange, and generate ideas for various types of music enjoy beginning the process at a piano or keyboard of this type. The process is so organic with this board due to the beautiful touch screen (color), and the editing tools that compare to any DAW system. Having detailed editing (track view, measure view, and piano-roll view) is amazing! The detailed and powerful sampler allows you to add sounds to the mix, and they are easy to save (USB ports on back). Be sure to get the extra RAM board from Korg.

    The sounds on the Korg M3 are first rate, with excellent pianos, e_pianos, organs, guitars, bass, brass, woodwind, string, percussion, synth, world, and much more. Combining onboard sounds with your samples is easy. Adding sampled audio files to the mix is not hard at all. Samples can be layered into a sequence via RPPR (in realtime) or by copying them to a track (turning the M3 into a digital audio system). This is a bit tricky, and the board does have a learning curve, but this is because there are SO MANY features. You can also re-sample any sound, combi, sequence, or pattern that you create, and all samples can be saved as a .wav file to your USB stick or USB hard drive. You can additional attach a USB CD-ROM and burn all your .wav files directly to the CD.

    The software editor-librarian that comes with this board is fantastic and works as a pluggin within Pro Tools, DP, Cubase, Logic, and more. Overall, a great purchase! Those who gig with their bands can talk about the board from that perspective, but from a composition/arranging and idea generating perspective all I can say is this board is the BEST tool we have without going into full-blown 16-track digital audio. Oh, and the screen blows away the competition (along with the Kronos).

  • from Cleveland, OH, USA January 2, 2011Music Background:
    Semi-pro musician

    The best yet!

    I started my Korg Workstation experience with the Trinity Pro, then the Triton. Since I obtained my M3, I have sold my Trinity and retired my Triton! I am involved in several different projects, and the M3 is 100% suitable for each and every one of them. From sequenced backgrounds for solo jazz gigs to on-stage requirements for different ensembles, the M3 can do it all! The overall sound quality is superior, and the ability to save effect settings as presets is a real time-saver when you have to set up several combinations quickly.
    The multisamples of the sounds are so good that I generally need to use the insert effects very little; the strings, in particular, only require a bit of reverb to sound awesome. The only criticism I have is that the piano samples seem harsh, and seem to be lacking in comparsion to the samples on the old Trinity. It would also be helpful to be able to adjust velocity by a discrete amount (i.e., 10) in addition to using the curves supplied for modification; they seem slightly esoteric and I have trouble using them. These minor drawbacks are not important enough to remove a star, or even 1/2 star, from this review.
    I could go on and on about Karma, and how wonderful the semi-weighted keyboard feels, but you're better off experiencing this for yourself.

  • from Somewhere in Ocean County,N.J. December 3, 2009Music Background:
    Veteran workstation keyboardist,recording hobbyist & audiophile

    My dream hardware workstation!!

    Before the Xpanded version came about,this workstation was a joke for the price(as it were) upon it's initial release....pianos were horrible & the only real significant upgrades from the Triton Extreme,were the sequencer & effects.
    At it's current price-along with the OS upgrade,this workstation dominates the market,as no one else offers this much for so little-AMAZING!
    I have been glued to this beast for two days...completely immersed in the vast sea of functions in the sequencer & the wonderful library of sounds and I have just scratched the surface.....this is such a deep keyboard,that my head is spinning over the possibilities of this ethereal instrument!
    The build quality from top to bottom is absolutely stunning...the keybed is highly addictive,with it's very responsive semi-weighted keys(the best I've ever felt in a hardware workstation)and the non-slip surface of the black keys is a joy to play!
    As for the rest of the controls,all of the sliders,buttons & knobs are smooth as glass & interact with your touch so seamlessly...incredible!
    The ribbon controller of the M3 is quite unique...a very pliable surface and yet,still allows for your fingers to glide graciously across it-very impressive!
    All of the connections in the rear of the M3 are very logically laid out...considerably more so than my Triton Extreme.
    The two most significant features that really had me sold on the M3,are the piano upgrades and a sequencer screen that's more fun & seamless to use than my Reason 4 software!

    The electric guitar sounds & effects of the M3 don't quite measure up to my Reason 4(but then again,PC software has always had an edge over hardware in this respect),but in the hardware realm,Korg still delivers pretty well,with a decent amount of usable e. guitars.
    My only real complaints about the M3 would be-one,that the exclusion of a CF or SD slot,forces you to have a USB drive protruding out of the rear of the instrument,which causes me to worry that I may accidentally bump into & break it off(I just don't have the room to add a external hard drive),unless I drastically reconfigure my studio.
    Secondly(but more trivial),would be the white plastic of the top right & left corners,sides & rear, and the turd-brown panels on the sides are just plain ludicrous(what was Korg thinking)?
    Come to think of it though & what really bothers me more than anything,is the bloated price & very limited availability of the EXB-M256 memory cards-OUCH!>:~<

  • from me@jesseshaw.com May 7, 2009Music Background:
    Song writer

    Sensational!

    A Karma and an MS2000B were the backbone of my recording until my M3 arrived. When I opened it, I realized my past music had very little spine indeed! This board is everything you need right now, with plenty for you to explore and discover for years to come. Once the day comes when you know everything there is to know about it, you can expand it with a full Radius engine and start all over again.

    The interface is amazing. The touch screen menus are organized in an intuitive way. It also doubles as a KAOSS pad!

    Buy one, you won't look back.

  • from New York September 24, 2008Music Background:
    Hobbyist

    Amazing! The best out there

    I have been looking for an all-in-one solution for a long time. I was looking at each of the different models in this price range (the Motif XS, the Fantom G and the M3). Originally i wanted to get the Fantom G but after working with it, I found that only some of the sounds were good (i know this is a very personal opinion that many would disagree with). Also, it is not as easy to use as it looks. I then played the M3 and was blown away! It really sounds amazing. Far better than the others, with the new update, it has become the most powerful workstation out there. It is very easy to use once you get used to it (I will admit that it does have a bit of a learning curve). But overall it beats the competition in all the important ways, sound, ease of use, and features. In all honesty, the thing that pushed me over the edge on this was the update. To me, it shows Korg is committed to this model and improving the software behind the machine in big ways. For me this was a big investment and it is unlikely I will be getting anything new for a while, so to see that Korg is committed to improvements a year after its release really made a good impression on me.

    I have owned for a few weeks and am still just scratching the surface of what this machine can do.

  • from Panama City,FL July 25, 2007Music Background:
    Performer, Sound Engineer, Worship Leader

    Finally..It does it all!!!

    I was fortunate enough to walk into the local music store in Panama City, Florida and watched the Korg rep unbox the first one. I asked for a demo and he plugged it in and 2 hours later I left drooling....and I don't even play-my wife does! The rep had this grin from ear to ear and said he can't get enough of this thing either.

    We have a Yamaha MO8 and wish it had more to it. This thing is like a Triton on Steroids mixed with an Oasys in that it records audio or samples and you can mix each part separately and the Karma features make this the "arranger"/ live performance tool we've all dreamed of!! This thing does it all and it does it all very well. The pads are the best yet on ANY piece of gear I've touched...and I've touched some gear! Thumb drive storage is perfect too!

    The trick is going to be learning how to use it properly and not waste time and get frustrated. Korg has viedos and the Karma site does too.

    The M3 allows you to perform with sounds you swear you should be paying an entire band and electronic engineer for. Karma means the performance is never the same and always top notch.

    If you don't like this you probably don't know how to use it. Find out when the Korg rep is in town and schedule a demo...you'll "get it" when they demo it.

  • from VA September 20, 2011Music Background:
    Music Producer

    Pretty much everything you'll need to produce hits.

    The Korg M3 is a very flexible workstation with lots of great features.

    PROS:

    1. The interface is full color and easy to navigate through.

    2. The drum sounds are great!!!!

    3. Thereís a very good selection of Synth / Radias Sounds

    4. Individual 3 Band EQ for each track. (low, mid, high)

    5. The sequencer is easy to use.

    6. The display/sampler module can tilt up so you wonít have to hunch
    over the workstation to work or view the screen.

    7. Thereís assignable pads for drums, chords, or other sounds.

    8. Good combinations.

    9. 8 sliders that allow real time modification of sounds.

    10. Stellar Piano sounds!!!!


    CONS

    1. Thereís no Master EQ for the overall mix. This helps when you need a quick mix. Instead you must EQ each track individually which requires more time.

    2. The rock guitar sounds are not very good, ok to use for accents in a song but thatís it.

    3. The guitar sounds could use some built in riffs/runs to add a more
    realistic feel.

    4. Thereís no stand alone cymbals kit. There are drum kits with cymbals/highhats in them but no specific all cymbals/highhat kit like in the Korg Triton which was perfect. As a drummer I need a stand alone cymbals/highhat kit!!!!

    5. Cannot combine sampling RAM, major disappointment.

    6. The horns are good but some require multiple effects to get the most out of them.

    7.The headphones jack is on the back of the unit which requires you to drape the cord either around the back and under the keyboard, or over the top of the keyboard by the joy stick.

  • from Oslo, Norway July 13, 2011Music Background:
    Hobbyist

    Great workstation with endless possibilities

    I got my Korg M3 61-key version recently, and was blown away of the quality of the instrument, the sounds and the expressiveness of the synth. Truly an instrument, not just a box with white and black keys. The knobs and sliders provoke playing and experimentation, and the only negative about it is that you can spend hours just noodling around not getting any real work done!

    Yesterday I added the EXB-Radias expansion board to my M3, and it opened up even more sonic doors. It gives the synth more strangeness and experimental sounds, as well as some really fat programs that sound even richer than the already great sound collection. I like that programming sounds seem a bit easier on the Radias than on the built in EDS system.

    Pros:
    - Really, really great keys! Somewhere between semi-weighted and synth action, very controllable and expressive - and wonderful aftertouch!
    - Chord pads. Love them!
    - Great, precise joystick
    - Faders that can be used for lots of tweaking
    - Software editor can be used as plugin in your DAW
    - Karma, which is crazy and over the top (try the arpeggiator Karmas, they're more down to earth)
    - Nice, professional design with touchscreen
    - MIDI over USB

    Cons:
    - As a workstation, it has some boot time (around 1 minute)
    - The software editor could be easier to use, like the microkorg XL editor

    Overall a super centerpiece in my studio setup. It has great sounds that are instantly available (no loading a plugin in my DAW, find a preset, load it, wait, play). Can't wait to use it more!

  • from ok August 30, 2008Music Background:
    muscian,songwriter

    the sound the sound where are the sounds

    THE M3 KINDA LET ME DOWN ON THE SOUND QUALITY. THE SYNTH BASSES ARE NOT EVEN AS GOOD AS THE CLASSIC TRITON
    AND OF COURSE THE ACOUSTIC PIANOS ARE TERRIBLE THEY SOUND HOLLOW RIGHT AROUND MIDDLE C YUK! THE GOOD THING ABOUT THE M3 ARE THE DRUMS. THEY ARE SLAMMIN AND THE ELECTRIC PIANO SOUNDS ARE INCREDIBLE. GO KORG! THE 8 PADS ARE GREAT. AND THE STRINGS GREAT AS USUAL.THE KARMA IS NICE ALSO. THE USB IS VERY HELPFUL TO DOWN LOAD SOUNDS OFF THE INTERNET THE M3 HAS GREAT POTENTIAL.

  • from minnesota June 27, 2007Music Background:
    serious hobby

    seems like an unfinished gong

    I had one but returned it because it seemed unfinished. I could also say that I am biased toward yamaha's interface which, even w/o a touch screen, seems to require far less navigation to get things done.

    for now, I'm sticking with my S90ES and ramping up my interests in Cubase rather than moving towards a more sophisticated keyboard/onboard software approach.

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