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Microphone Month 4

Hammond XK-1c Portable Organ Reviews

4.5 stars based on 19 customer reviews
Questions about the Hammond XK-1c Portable Organ?

Questions about the Hammond XK-1c Portable Organ?

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  • from keene NH October 31, 2016Music Background:
    Longtime pro getting back into playing

    Love Love Love!

    Been a B3 player since the late 70s. Had an original XK-3 with a Leslie 3300. Great. Skipped a generation and bought this. Wow. Leslie engine stupendous. Make sure you play it in STEREO. Hammond/Suzuki's been working hard and it shows. And it's 15 pounds! A great buy!

  • from Northfield MN June 13, 2016Music Background:
    Versatile in Audio, Keys, Guitar & Bass.

    Hammond XK-1C

    Oh Yeah!! Have this paired with my Hammond XK-3C Pro-System, Nord C2D, Nord Stage 88 mixing into a A&H QU 16 or Mix-Wizard 16:4 & Speaker Pairs of QSC K12's, 10's & 8's. Monitor is a Space Station, Roland 550 or 880. Versatility +. Call Marcos Sanchez ext 1331 for QUALITY Sweetwater Service.

  • from November 29, 2015

    Well done, Hammond

    I have been playing various Hammond / Leslie combinations since 1971. So, I'm a true Hammond/Leslie fanatic - it speak to my soul! I acquired the XK-1c recently and, wow, what a beauty Hammond has produced! The Leslie is quite amazing and true. AND, you can stick it in a bag and sling it over your shoulder on the way to an gig.

  • from June 6, 2015


    I really never saw myself rockin' out with something so old school. But it is a sound you simply can only get with the real deal. We just had a gig last night, and my band mates were amazed!!

  • from Commack,NY January 14, 2015Music Background:

    Love the XK1C

    First I have to say that I had an amazing buying experience to Sweetwater. My sales engineer Luke and Andy were exceptional. I must've asked 1000 questions on the phone, their patients their expertise and the willingness to go above and beyond made this an amazing purchase experience. I purchased gear in the past from some of the local music stores, and I was always treated like a nobody. Sweetwater elevates the status of anyone, to that of a professional musician.I was treated professionally, and like an old friend. Thank you so much guys.
    In terms of the Hammond XK1C, I was extremely impressed. I am currently a Yamaha motif XS six user, and was less than thrilled with the Oregon Patchetts. I knew that nothing would compare to that of the Hammond,and I was right.The realism, and expressive keyboard, makes this an absolute joy to play. In fact, I'm playing it even more than I am my Yamaha motif, which I absolutely love.The ability to shape the sound, into any plastic Hammond Oregon is simply mind blowing. The only one criticism that I have, is the Leslie switches. They are very flimsy, and on a couple of occasions, the button slipped out of place. This is not going to prevent me from getting the keyboard five stars. The sound quality is great, and the overall build quality is high. My only criticism, is the longevity of these Leslie controls. However, I'm very happy with my purchase, and will absolutely buy again from Sweetwater. These guys rock!

  • from Las Vegas October 21, 2014Music Background:
    Professional keyboardist and recording artist.

    Best clone ever at the best price!

    I had a Korg CX3 with a Motion Sound for my Leslie effect for many years until both didn't work anymore. Had no idea that Hammond had come along as far as it has. I didn't want to spend as much on the XK-3c. A friend that was using the XK-1c said this would give everything I needed without an extra Leslie-like speaker. He was right. I only use this now and at 16 lbs, this is the best purchase I have made. I would recommend a footswitch to turn the Leslie on and off, but otherwise, the sounds are amazing even out of the box, which many options to edit and or use a USB to save your favs.

  • from Old Lyme, CT October 14, 2014Music Background:
    Pro Musician, Instructor and Producer.

    In One Word: WOW!

    I have owned quite a few of the Hammond clones starting with the XK2 and then both the XK3 and XK3C. For a short time I even had the SK1 that I did not like and could not stand the plastic endcaps. For quite a few years I have played the XK1 thru a New Ventilator or thru a Leslie 122. It was very good. I have had 4 different models of Nords and did not care for any of them. Either the acoustic pianos sounded too digital or the organ and leslie simulation sounded too digital. Outside of my full side Hammond B3 and leslie 122, I now have the new light weight with wood endcaps - XK1C. I am blown away by the feel of the keybed and the overall sound especially the Leslie Simulation. This new Hammond does not need to go through a Neo Ventilator because the new simulation is excellent. I did hook up the Vent and maybe it gave just a hint of improvement. Congrats to Hammond for this model. I would really like to see a lower keyboard made for this to make it a duo to be a perfect setup. This new 16 lb organ is clearly the best in the market today. I have played a few of the other non Hammonds and they just do not have the complete sound that this one has. Even the color of the waterfall keys are just about perfect and the feel is asesome. Thank You Hammond-Suzuki. I guess I would suggest a one piece duo keyboard of this model with a 2nd set of drawbars - just a suggestion.

  • from Fort Mohave AZ July 21, 2014Music Background:
    Sound engineer and pro musician

    Hammond Fanatic

    This Key board is awesome for home or on the road... I bought this for a homeless guy I have living with me that has been a been a pro since 1960's... He was in a huge depression since he lost his B3...was starting to get a little senile and this keyboard brought him back to life....He is blind and was happy to that he could find the controls easily and able to get the sounds he wanted and put them in the presets... He warned me that I was probably wasting my money as he highly doubted that anything could compare with the real thing...he's thrilled with this keyboard and has been blowing crowds away ever since

  • from Carrying Place, ON June 21, 2014Music Background:
    Pro Musician semi retired


    I bought this fellow because hauling my Nord C2 in the flight case was killing me. I could not be more pleased. The presets are great and navigating the panel very easy. The Leslie sim is more than usable,j jumping over to drawbars fast, and it is light as a feather. Sounds Kller!! And even better through a Leslie. If you need a dedicated single manual organ, I don't think you will be disappointed.

  • from Upstate NY February 17, 2014Music Background:
    Keyboards and vocals for 60 years

    Best yet for its size

    I have had all kinds of Hammond clones and Leslie simulators. Emu B3,
    Nord rack, Vent, Spin etc. They all had simulations I enjoyed but there was always something lacking. Enter the XK1C!!! Don't need any other clone period! The feel is good, the preset tones are awesome. I have finally got my rig the way I have always wanted it. If you are looking for a reasonably priced Hammond clonewheel with nothing but organ go no further. This thing rocks and is being greatly appreciated in my Gospel blues band!!!

  • from Williamsport, PA March 27, 2017Music Background:
    Old Rock and Roller

    Hammond XK-1c

    It's a real Hammond for not a lot of money! Has that authentic Hammond sound. The Leslie effect sounds authentic and the Chorus/Vibrato is quite convincing. I carried a real B-3 around for years. Too bad this technology wasn't available back in the "stone ages".

  • from Michigan May 5, 2016Music Background:
    Composer, arranger, keyboardist

    It Takes a Hammond to Clone a Hammond

    I picked up a demo unit from Sweetwater back in February. Prior to that, I was pushing Native Instruments' B4II with my Korg M3-61 (using the M3's faders as drawbars). IMO, this unit sounds better and is more playable. The only reasons I dinged it a half-star is that (1) I wish the drawbars had the detents so you could get that "click" when you push or pull them, and (2) I miss the ability to choose between vintage, clean and trashy tonewheel emulations like on the B4II. Granted, both are minor issues given the price point; otherwise, it's a killer unit.

    The waterfall keybed feels awesome. Tight and springy with very fast and responsive action.

    I also love the fact that it's so lightweight. Big plus for a gigging musician.

  • from February 4, 2016

    One Annoying Problem!

    OK. I wrote a review of this already, and I thoroughly love most things about this board. BUT.... I'm currently trying to update the OS and save my current settings using the USB connection, and let me tell you, finding a USB flash drive that this thing will ACTUALLY RECOGNIZE is basically impossible!! I don't know how they let this thing leave go to production with the USB functioning THIS badly. I've gone through 6-7 different flash drives now and still the thing won't recognize a single one of them. Check the forums - NOBODY can get this finicky little port to actually work! Hammond just responded to my email and said they would send a flashdrive they formatted at their factory, with the updated OS. But wow.... how did somebody not catch this problem and correct it before this thing went into production?!?!?!?

  • from Wisconsin January 13, 2016

    up to the task

    unlike its larger sibling, this 65 key keyboard doesn't get "muddy" in the lower octaves.
    It doesn't have all of the bells and whistles of its larger counterpart, but for the money, it is up to the task for your B-3 rock organ needs

  • from Philadelphia, PA USA January 23, 2015Music Background:
    Professional Musician


    I've used an XK3 (not the XK3c, but the first generation XK3) for years. I ran it through a GSI Burn Leslie simulator pedal, and I tweaked it in every way to where I had the sound I was after (the Leslie pedal was a must - the older Leslie simulation on the XK3 was simply terrible). I loved the layout of that thing, and I loved the two sets of drawbars. But age and convenience finally caught up with me - I live in a row home in South Philly, and lugging the 40+ pound XK3 up the stairs 3-4 times a week was just killing me. I wanted something lighter and smaller, and I decided I was willing to give up the extra set of drawbars in favor of portability.

    After setting up the XK1c, I was pretty blown away. It sounded pretty darned good out of the box. Then I did some tweaking - lessened the key click, lowered the horn in the Leslie simulation (the 122 sounded best to my ears), cut down the percussion just a bit (Suzuki Hammond always over-does the volume of the percussion in their default settings to my ears), and found the "tone control" parameter which really brought in some of that nice dark tone I love on the real thing. Finally I added in just a bit of overdrive (never been a fan of hugely overdriven organ).

    The sound this little 16 pound board is now making is just amazing! And the vastly improved Leslie simulation is good enough that I don't even need to run this through the GSI Burn pedal anymore - the internal Leslie sim has improved immeasurably since the XK3 days!

    If you really need the full layout (the reverse presets, two sets of drawbars, the rotary Chorus/Vibrato dial), there are other boards like the XK3c, or one of the many dual manual organ clones that sound incredible - the Crumar Mojo reigns supreme in my opinion. But if you need a single board and don't mind giving up a few of those extras (keeping in mind this can still be a two manual organ with a MIDI lower manual - but you'll be relegated to using presets since there's no dedicated set of drawbars for the second manual), this is a fantastic-sounding keyboard!

  • from Las Vegas October 1, 2014Music Background:
    Musician, Songwriter, Production

    Sounds like a B3!

    As a B3 and Leslie 122 owner, I am incredibly impressed with what Hammond has done with the XK-1c. This is the sound of a real B3. While there is, of course, still a difference in feel and experience between sitting down at a real, live B3; BUT when you listen and tweak the drawbars of the Xk-1c, and change the scanner settings, percussion settings, etc., this reacts and sounds the way a real B3 does. Also, the Leslie simulator is really, really good. Plus, the deep level of editing and customization that can be done on this organ is pretty amazing. And it is 16 pounds! If I could adjust the reverb on the fly I would have given it 5 stars; the fact you need to go into edit mode to adjust the reverb level is the ONLY thing I would have changed on this. HIGHLY recommended.

  • from Gainesboro, TN November 29, 2013Music Background:
    Country, Classic Rock and Hobbyist

    Excellent sounding organ!

    Although I was not really looking to replace my ver2 digital Korg CX-3 and Neo Vent, I read some reviews on this guy and thought, what the heck! I thought I would miss the 2nd set of drawbars but that's not the case. Also, the C/V and percussion is a bit better on this. I'm still working on the on-board Leslie sim and have used it instead of the Vent on the last two gigs. I doubt that anyone in the crowd, including musicians, could tell the difference. Not saying I won't go back to the Vent, but it's just extra gear I won't have to deal with if I don't need it. Every parameter can be tweaked on the organ, so one can dial it in like they want. Very versatile.

    Overall, if all one needs is a good Hammond organ sound without extra voices, then this is great at the price point it has. I would highly recommend it, and especially the great people at Sweetwater, for your purchase.

  • from Hattiesburg, MS October 22, 2013Music Background:

    Good things come in small packages

    Bought this for the size and weight. I own a XK-3c and love it, but was looking for something easier to transport. The XK-1c exceeded my expectations regarding the form and build of the instrument. Although it is very lightweight, the waterfall keys and drawbars have a nice solid feel. The controls are simple and well laid out. I don't think I will miss the second set of drawbars for the lower manual as there is a set of buttons to switch drawbar control from upper/lower/pedal. The inverse keyboard presets are replaced by 8 "favorite" buttons. The vibrato/chorus control will take a little getting used to.....wish they had just used the old rotary knob. The leslie sim is definitely improved. Digital distortion sounds good, but haven't A/B'd it with the tubes on the XK-3c. The menu is a little awkward to navigate, but aren't they all? Finally, there are 64 user and 64 factory presets, not 100 as described in the specs on this website.
    All in all, Hammond did a great job of putting this B-3 clone in an amazingly small package and a much better price point than the XK-3c.

  • from Greenville SC January 3, 2015Music Background:
    pro musician and music teacher

    Not deserving of being called a Hammond

    Poorly made, flimsy, not road worthy, I'm a working player who travels a lot, this thing is falling apart after a few months, I'm sorry I bought it, even tho the organ sounds are great

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