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Review: Roli Lumi Keys musical keyboard

Review: Roli Lumi Keys musical keyboard


Musically, it’s me a walk Dunning-Kruger effect. Badut learn enough playing what I’m doing I know but it’s not enough, you know, to play an instrument. The long isolation of pandemic life has sparked many new hobbies and a few months ago I thought maybe music could be mine.

Enter Lumi Keys. Roli’s Lumi Keys is a keyboard in a foot-long block with translucent keys that light up in various tones, depending on which note is played. It is primarily marketed for beginners, and is paired with a helper app loaded with virtual music lessons. The app indicates keys to light up with the music over time, so you know which ones to press to play. These bright lights and bright colors seemed to distract easily from the attention of the stupid brain.

The months of use-off of two different versions of the Lumi Keys didn’t turn me into a kiss miracle. (I didn’t expect it.) I liked the device more time as a gadget or tool than as an instructional tool. Midi is a solid controller and the lessons are easy and straightforward to understand, although versions of popular songs may have a bit of inspiration.

Photo: James North / Roli

It started as Lumi Keys Kickstarter project In 2019 again. After achieving the goal of raising money on the first day, Roli went into production and put out limited work for his Kickstarter sponsors. Then the company was blinded by the pandemic manufacture of suitcases. Meanwhile, Roli has made some minor changes to improve the quality of the build and has re-released a new version of the keyboard. Pre-order, however. It costs $ 299, and the optional subscription to the app is $ 79 a year.

I have a “Kickstarter version” of the product and a new version. The latter is the one I use the most. Lumi Keys fits in my desk right, as it takes up less space than keyboards. It has a total of 24 keys, and is just over a quarter of a very standard keyboard. Reducing the size means that the keys are narrower than normal for the piano, which may take some adjustments if you are used to plain size keys.

Lumi Keys is part of Roli’s Blocks line, which means there are small magnetic connectors that allow the two blocks to be synchronized with each other. You double that between two and eight of these pairs. Aligned, the seam between the two Lumi keys is barely noticeable, even though the connectors can be easily disconnected when you’re actually locking or throwing a device at the wrong angle. The rubber strips on the bottom prevent it from slipping too much on a flat surface.

The keys themselves are springs and plastic. Roli says the keys are 92 percent of the depth of the high piano, but there is nothing to confuse the smooth concealment of Lumi’s keyboard with the crisp and satisfied whirlwind of the ordinary piano. This is a portable keyboard, not a Steinway. And hey, did I mention the keys lit up?



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