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Montage8 or Korg Kronos

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Hello everyone, briefly about me, I have been playing the violin and piano for a long time, now the main instrument is more like a piano and I record music, I want to take myself a professional keyboard Now I have a regular Yamaha synthesizer for 600 dollars, in the process of my searches here I saw Korg Kronos and its owners speak very well of it, I want to ask you what tell me? in the pricing policy, they are the same, but it is important for me to take a good device!

Posted : 05/03/2021 4:13 pm
Posts: 0
New Member

And ... you're asking this on the official Yamahasynth ask-a-question forum? 😀

They're both great keyboards and if neither of them misses any features you need in the end it may all come down to your personal taste.

My best advice ... watch as many YouTube videos as you can and form your own opinion.

Posted : 05/03/2021 4:47 pm
Posts: 783
Prominent Member

A couple of years back when I was researching what the best new Synth/Workstation to go with, it came down to the Kronos, Montage & MODX. I wanted the 88 key with a piano-like feel, so that & the amount of User memory available was the reason I dropped the MODX as a possibility. It didn't trigger the sample velocities evenly across the keybed & I wouldn't be able to have all the piano libraries loaded that I wanted. So it came down to the Montage & MODX. I watched all the YouTube videos, did all the google searches possible, went on several Yamaha & Korg Forums. It was very close, but in the end it was the folks on the Korg forum that suggested that the Montage is the better choice for what I was looking to do, because I was going to use the new keyboard for everything...all DAW based sequencing of Bass, Drums, rhythms, background ,sounds, etc., but also play several different sounds myself at the same time, utilizing all the Engines available. One keybaord to rule them all. I didn't want multiple keyboards when playing live, just one single Synth/Workstation that can do it all as a one man band. This meant that maximum Polyphony was one of the most important criteria in making my decision. The Korg folks said that the Kronos basically has the lowest common dominator based polyphony, whereby the max polyphony was set based on the engine with the lowest polyphony that is used. Whereas the Montage has additive polyphony, whereby using multiple engines adds more polyphony & in the case of the Montage it doubles the polyphony (another reason why the MODX was not chosen, as it didn't have as much polyphony on FM-X sounds as the Montage does)...

Posted : 07/03/2021 4:18 pm
Posts: 801
Prominent Member

The three big guns in this product category are Yamaha Montage, Korg Kronos, and Roland Fantom. Each has ways it is better than the others, it will depend on what matters most to you. If one was clearly best for everyone, nobody would be buying the others,

Posted : 07/03/2021 4:30 pm
Posts: 0
Active Member

Both are good. The Yamaha has more realistic instrument sounds (piano, guitar), where the Korg excels in "synthetic" sounds. Korg is more "tweakable" if you choose to modify sounds or create your own. The Yamaha may only have 2 software synths (the Korg has 9), but what it can do with the 2 is stellar. The Korg can apply more effects to a sound than the Yamaha and has a better selection of effects. The Yamaha hardware is better than the Korg. Yamaha's sliders, knobs, buttons, etc have a better feel than the Korg which feels "economical"... especially compared to the prior Korg Oasys which it replaced. The Montage is more in line with the Oasys if you are familiar with that model. The Kronos has a 40 gig (from what I recall) SSD where the Yamaha has 1 or 2 gig (cant recall...too lazy to look up) storage with no drive... however, with not having a drive it comes alive in 15 seconds where the Korg takes minutes to wake up (Yin/Yang). The Kronos has KARMA which is fantastic, if you can get your head around it... but the Yamaha has it's big pulsing knob (thank God you can turn it off) which takes sound modification in a different direction. I personally feel that this was Yamahas way to compete with KARMA. KARMA can modify arps on the fly (and much more), but with Yamaha you can create your own arps (you can with KARMA also but it is difficult) and morph sounds easily. The Yamaha has a redundant way to navigate its screen with the buttons on the right, which is nice... and faster than using the touchscreen. The Korg has a bigger touchscreen which allows all 16 tracks to be viewed at once (instead of the Yamahas 8), but this reduces the font/information size which fat fingers have frustration with. Miss that Oasys screen. Korg has a graded keybed, the Yamaha does not (matter of preference although I prefer graded). Overall, both are good. You wont be disappointed with either... Techy probably prefer the Korg, Non-techy the Yamaha. Aesthetically the Yamaha for sure. Sound quality... both good.

Opinions WILL vary. This is just my 2-cents... which is all it's worth. Peace.

Posted : 07/03/2021 4:37 pm
Posts: 7907
Illustrious Member

It's difficult to predict where product lines will go - but Kronos has been around for longer and therefore seems to have less tread left on the tires. I don't really know, but would expect there to be a Kronos follow-on before a Montage follow-on.

I'm not saying to let that be the end-all of your decision - but others have chimed in on other aspects. So I offer this as an additional thought.

Posted : 08/03/2021 3:10 am
Posts: 0
Eminent Member

Thast a question i answered 2 years ago, when i moved from a Kronos to a Montage. (I also own a Genos)

There is many things which make the Kronos look more promissing on paper..
More Memory
More Sound engines
More Backing options

However, what made me choose for a Montage, and still holds trough to today :
- Its so much easier to be creative on the Montage, not just sound design, but just try create an ARP on KARMA and then try to create an ARP on Montage. To me the interface of the Montage is so much more straight forward that you can use all your ennergy to be creative.
- The Keybed of the Montage 8 is in a different cattegory then the RH3 of the Kronos 88.
- The layout of the interface, the feedback of slider and knob position trough lights. and the 32 navigation buttons to the right. It really shows how well tought out the Montage is.
- PC integration, being a functional audio interface is huge, but also the added DAW controll is a huge pro. Also the free samplerobot is gold.
- Soundmondo, its perfect for sharing and finding new ideas, wish more people would use it.

Now i can name 100 things the Montgae could learn from teh Kronos
And 100 more things they could improve on the Montage.
But those 5 things are the reason i love the montage and feel no urge to exchange it for a Kronos ( or a Fantom, Kurzweil or Nord Stage)

Posted : 08/03/2021 1:14 pm
Posts: 0
Eminent Member

Consider a Nord Stage 3... I had a Montage 8 for almost two years and I ended up swapping it for a Nord Stage 3. I felt finally free 'cause I was really frustrated by the constant menu diving and I was tired to loose my time checking the manual or some youtube video in order to program it...

Posted : 14/03/2021 5:46 pm
Posts: 0
Trusted Member

Herman :
I have the both. I've been playing on Kronos for several years and I've bought a Montage six months ago.
They are absolutely complementary.
The Kronos is a complete workstation. The Montage is not a workstation. (sequencer, sampler, etc...)
With the Kronos I miss these beautiful accoustic instruments sounds of the Montage.

The sound design capacities of the Kronos are so huge ! There are great possibilities in the Montage too.

Nord Stage is well known for its great piano and organ sounds, many professionnals use it on stage but they use it for pianos and organ, essentially. For specific synths sounds, they use other keyboards. With its 34 voices polyphony only and its limited settings, the Lead engine, of the the Nord Stage 3 is far, far behind the Kronos or Montage synths capabilites.

I know I don't give you an help, but really, I won't get rid of the Montage or the Kronos. But I'm not afraid of spending time to read manuals, forums and videos.
I you are looking for good pianos only, Manuel is right : have a look to the Nord Stage.
Kronos and Montage do have great pianos sound too but if you just want to switch it on an play....go to the Nord.

So, the best is to define exactly what you are needing. And, above all, go to a shop and play with one and the other.

Posted : 15/03/2021 10:16 am
Posts: 801
Prominent Member

Nord Stage is well known for its great piano and organ sounds, many professionnals use it on stage but they use it for pianos and organ, essentially. For specific synths sounds, they use other keyboards. With its 34 voices polyphony only and its limited settings, the Lead engine, of the the Nord Stage 3 is far, far behind the Kronos or Montage synths capabilites.

I wouldn't agree there, at least depending on the kind of "synth" sounds you're talking about. If the Nord were only well appreciated for its pianos and organs, you'd see only Electros and not Stages, and you would also not be seeing Nord Lead synths, which are actually pretty popular as synths go. In fact, while Kronos and Nord Stage have true VA engines, Montage does not. (OTOH, Kronos and Montage have full FM sound engines, Nord has a very limited FM capability.) And 34-note polyphony is typically not an issue for analog-style synth sounds. (It's more than probably any analog synth ever had!)

As an aside, there's interesting reading in the February 2021 edition of Yamaha's Music Production Guide, where there is extensive info on Easy Sounds' "Nostalgia" add on pack which is designed to add more authentically VA-style synth sonic (and operational) qualities to the Montage/MODX. Even if you're not interested in the pack, it's worth reading for the discussion on some of the difficulties of trying to get VA-style sounds out of a sample-based synth engine. Another difference that is not discussed there can sometimes be found in the behaviors of portamento and pitch bends. I believe single trigger envelopes (which can span the playing of multiple notes in a mono lead line, for example) is another difference. Also, the ability to do true pulse width modulation.

Though besides piano, organ, and analog/VA/FM synth, there's a whole other category of sample-based sounds, and yes, this is an area where Kronos and Montage will beat the Nord. Nord's sampled sounds are very basic, limited to a single velocity layer and no alternate articulations. Montage sample-based sounds can have 8 such elements (compared to 1) in a single Part, and then you can gang up multiple Parts to get 16 or more. No comparison there! Though using the front panel knobs for programming your own tweaks of the sampled sounds or for real-time performance manipulation is a Nord strength. If I need a patch for a song with whatever combination of piano/organ/synth/sampled sounds, I can probably assemble at least an approximation of it more quickly on a Nord Stage 3 than on just about anything else. But you do trade off deeper manipulations, and things like more authentic sounding strings/brass/winds. I guess the bottom line is, the boards each have their strengths. That's why so many of us have more than one of them!

Posted : 15/03/2021 2:34 pm
Posts: 0
New Member

And ... you're asking this on the official Yamahasynth ask-a-question forum? 😀

They're both great keyboards and if neither of them misses any features you need in the end it may all come down to your personal taste.

My best advice ... watch as many YouTube videos as you can and form your own opinion.

You mean...... you're taking issue with a question about the Yamaha Montage is being asked on the Yamahasynth forum?

If anything, take issue with the complete lack of context provided, or the fact that there really isn't even a relevant question being asked, other than "tell me about these two competing products".

But it's absurd to take issue with a comparative post where one of the boards is a Yamaha product.

Posted : 16/03/2021 3:04 pm
Posts: 0
Active Member

I can see how people like to compare them as they are both the flagships of their respective makers, but they really are different instruments. It all depends on your workflow and what you want for sounds. I have both and I prefer the Montage: it's easier to work with, sounds better (to me), and provides more musical joy. 🙂 ps. You should also check out the new Roland Fantoms workstations.

Posted : 19/03/2021 9:40 pm
Posts: 0
New Member

I say look at a lot of Youtube's of you favorite musician playing live and see what they are using. I am at same point Kronos vs Montage and done tons of research and they both offer a lot. One is better at some things the other is better at other things so neither is a clear winner. One thing all seem to say is the learning curve on the Kronos is much higher nine engines to take a deep dive on. Other issue for me is weight the Kronos 8 is light than the 64 pound Montage 8. I don't know what size you're looking for 6 7 8 the Kronos has the fully weighted keybed on both the 7 and 8, the Montage only the 8. So they are real close so only thing left is of the keyboard players I like what do they use and for me all but one play Kronos. The one person that doesn't is a Yamaha artist, but mainly plays acoustic piano, Rhodes, and analog synth's, he doesn't play his Montage very much.

Since other non-related factors are holding up me placing my order I keep reading posts and article just in case someone comes up with a clear reason to choose one over the other. But haven't seen one yet.

Posted : 24/03/2021 6:10 am
Posts: 0
Trusted Member

It's been 3 weeks since Herman asked his question. We gave him several answers.

Please Herman, could you tell us what do you think ?

Posted : 24/03/2021 8:12 am
Posts: 1717
Member Admin

This forum is so broken he probably has no idea how to log back in, and has likely never received any notifications of replies.

And if he did try to log back in, and go through the impossibility that is that experience on something like a Mac with Safari, the experience probably reflected so poorly on Yamaha that he chose something else.

Posted : 24/03/2021 10:24 am
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