Loog's baby digital piano could be the perfect starter instrument for newbies


                        Loog's baby digital piano could be the perfect starter instrument for newbies
By: Engadget Posted On: October 02, 2023 View: 54

Loog is a company known for manufacturing fantastic starter instruments for kids, with the company’s diminutive electric guitar making our list of the best audio-related gifts back in 2019. Now it’s back with a digital piano that blurs the line between kid-friendly and appropriate for adults.

The Loog Piano is a gorgeous instrument that, while still tiny, brings some nifty features for both brand-new players and veteran key smashers. The obvious selling point here is the looks. The 3-octave keyboard is sandwiched between solid wood sides and the top’s covered in red “sonically transparent fabric” that really pops.

The company touts the piano’s “musician-grade sound and design.” The design’s certainly on-point, but what about the sound? The built-in stereo speakers let you play without headphones and Loog says the keys allow for dynamics (piano to forte.) The company says this is likely the first keyboard at this size and price point that incorporates velocity-sensitive keys. Check out this demo video of the piano in action without any post effects.

Loog boasts that the instrument uses both sampled and modeled sounds, so attack, decay and the air between notes should all recall an actual piano. The combination of the built-in speakers and velocity engine also works to mimic the analog instrument, but this is still a digital piano, so moving to the real thing later will require a bit of an adjustment period.

The Loog Piano is battery-powered and fully portable, and gets around three hours of play time per charge via the built-in USB-C port. It weighs nearly five pounds, however, so keep that in mind if you plan on stuffing this thing in your kid’s backpack. Though the speakers are a main draw, you can of course plug in some headphones for private playing.

You may notice what this instrument doesn’t have. There aren’t hundreds of other sounds. There aren’t built-in effects. There’s a volume knob and that’s about it. This is by design, with Loog stating that the instrument’s “full muscle is devoted to the piano sound.”

Despite lacking 400 horrible brass sounds you’ll never use, this piano does have one significant tech-forward feature. Loog’s instrument integrates with a proprietary app that’s primarily for learning piano. This app is filled with “lessons and game-like exercises that make learning fun and easy,” though the piano integrates with other learning software. Additionally, it ships with a set of decidedly low-tech flash cards to help teach chords and scales.

Instead of going with a traditional retail launch, Loog took to Kickstarter to drum up support for its latest instrument. As of this writing, it’s already smashed through the initial goal by a factor of 30, so expect units to start shipping in April. Early adopters can currently snag the instrument for $250, which is 20 percent off its eventual retail price.

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