Updated: January 25, 2020 by Richard Cole
If there is one brand that people will instinctively relate to keyboards, its Casio. Let’s be real, this company has offered anything from kid toy models to professional digital pianos for over several decades.
When you have that kind of presence on a market, people tend to notice. Speaking of their pro line of products, they are absolutely at the top of the list when it comes to elite brands in the business. However, it’s the high end stuff that puts them in favor with the majority of the users, it’s the opposite.
A lot of brands are capable of delivering state of the art keyboards which cost an arm and a leg. But producing an affordable model which also delivers a great performance is where things get tricky. Today we are going to review one Casio keyboard which might prove that his brand knows how to make the tools for the budget user.
We are talking about the Casio LK 100 – a great little keyboard which brings loads of versatility to the table.
When you enter this segment of the market, you will find a whole lot of cheap keyboards trying to pass as quality product. In most cases, this type of practice leads to tangible disappointment on the side of the user. With that said, Casio is almost always transparent about their keyboards, about what they are designed to do, and finally what they are actually capable of.
Casio LK 100 the perfect example of this policy. Casio recognized exactly what the beginner keyboard players need, and they have designed a suitable model to meet those demands.
Before we go into any details, we can say that from the moment you lay your eyes on the Casio LK 100, you will realize it’s designed as a learning tool before anything else. The most obvious feature that backs up this assessment is the inclusion of illuminated keys.
There are several learning tools designed into the software that comes with the Casio LK 100. Among those, you will find a program which illuminates the keys of a given scale or chord progression, allowing you to follow along and learn both the technique and the notes which make these formations.
Let’s take a look at the overall layout of controls. Above the 61-keys at the very bottom of the keyboard, you will find an LCD screen surrounded with a number of buttons. These are used to select various features and navigate the preset library of the Casio LK 100. Above those, there is a legend with every preset listed.
Speaking of which, there are 100 presets available along with 50 rhythm patterns and fill in patterns. That is more than enough for beginners to explore various functions they can see on most modern keyboards, and develop their skill using an efficient learning tool. With that said, we can’t emphasize enough that everything about this keyboard is geared toward entry level users. You won’t find any professional functions on the Casio LK 100.
In terms of performance, the situation is exactly what we have expected. The quality of presets is not great, but is more than good enough considering what this keyboard was made to do.
It’s not one of those models which deliver organic sound, far from it. With that in mind, it’s worth mentioning again that the true value of Casio LK 100 Review doesn’t come from the quality of sound it brings, but rather how effective it is as a learning tool.
Just having illuminated keys which a complete novice can follow around means a lot. On top of that, you can see proper hand positioning and fingering on the small LCD display. These are just some of the learning features which can really boost your skill in a short period of time. So who is the Casio LK 100 aimed at? Anyone looking to learn how to play a keyboard.
If you have small kinds who are interested in playing, this is probably one of the best models you can provide them with. From the feedback available, kids seem to react well to the learning features of the Casio LK 100. Unfortunately, the model has been discontinued for a while now. If you wanted to get one, you would have to look at the used market.
What we like
The sheer amount of functionality Casio packed in an entry level model is impressive. They gave up on trying to create an omnipotent keyboard in the affordable range, and have rather decided to design a good learning tool for beginners. Looking at it with that in mind, we have to give Casio LK 100 great marks
What we don’t like
If we consider the application which Casio LK 100 was designed for, there is really nothing we can criticize in terms of design or performance. On the other hand, if were to nitpick, we might say that the sound engine could have been better, however that is somewhat unrealistic.
What really matters about Casio LK 100 is that this keyboard does the job it was designed to do, and it does it well. The amount of learning tools Casio crammed into a single keyboard is impressive for the price you were expected to pay.
Anyone, from complete beginners, to those looking to improve their technique, can benefit from Casio LK 100. If you have kids who are into playing keyboard, this is probably one of the models which will keep them interested in the subject matter, as well as help them learn the fundamentals of technique in a fast and efficient way.
Since this particular model has been discontinued, the only way to get one is to go over the used ads. In all honestly, getting a used Casio LK 100 is a bargain. Chances are you will get more bang for your buck of you take this route compared to buying a new keyboard for the same amount of money.