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Music Production

Kawai K3 Feature & Where To Buy One

Photograph of the blog post author, Music Gateway Team

Music Gateway Team


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kawai k3

In this article, we will be discussing the Kawai K3 Sythensizer and where you can purchase one.

Kawai Pianos

Kawai pianos are known for their high-quality craftsmanship and construction. They are made in Japan and have been around since 1927.

The pianos are known for their warm, clear tone and their ability to produce a wide range of sounds. They are popular among professional and amateur pianists alike. 

Kawai pianos are also known for their durability and longevity, with many models lasting decades with proper maintenance. They come in a variety of sizes and styles, ranging from grand and upright models to digital and hybrid models.

Kawai K3

The Kawai K3 is a digital synthesizer and sampler that was released in 1990. It features a 61-note keyboard with velocity and aftertouch, eight-voice polyphony, two oscillators per voice, a pair of resonant multi-mode filters, four LFOs, three envelope generators and a range of effects. It also features a built-in 16-bit sampler with a maximum sampling rate of 32 kHz.

The K3 is capable of producing a wide range of sounds, including analogue-style synthesized tones, realistic acoustic instrument samples, and complex soundscapes. Its user-friendly interface and extensive editing capabilities make it a popular choice for musicians and producers.

The Kawai K3 is a professional-grade digital piano that offers a wide range of features and benefits. Some of the benefits of using a Kawai K3 include:

  • High-Quality Sound: The Kawai K3 features an 88-key weighted hammer action keyboard. It also has a built-in sound engine that produces a rich, expressive sound.
  • Easy to Use: The Kawai K3 is designed to be user-friendly. With an intuitive control panel and a variety of sound settings to choose from.
  • Variety of Connectivity Options: The Kawai K3 is equipped with a variety of connections, including USB, MIDI, and Bluetooth, allowing you to connect to a variety of external devices.
  • Versatile: The Kawai K3 can be used for both practice and performance, with a range of features and settings to suit both applications.
  • Affordable: The Kawai K3 is an affordable digital piano that offers a great range of features and benefits.

Lets take a closer look at the Kawai k3 synthesizer…

The Kawai K3 excels as a background synthesizer due to its gentle sound quality. Its compatibility with both digital and analog instruments in a mix is remarkable. Favouring PPG-style bells and pads over traditional Oberheim/Sequential-like brass tones, it’s ideal for creating dreamy arpeggios and subtle electronic patterns with delay effects.

Exercise caution with the built-in (analog) chorus, as it can be quite noisy (at least in our K3), surpassing the noise levels of most Roland chorus sections. It is advisable to switch it OFF and utilize an external chorus instead.

On the other hand, the OSC BAL (balance) function is highly professional. It sets the mixing balance for the two oscillators: “-15” for oscillator No.1 only, “0” for an even mix, and “15” for oscillator No.2 only. The PRES (pressure) OSC BAL (balance) offers even more effectiveness by modulating the mixing balance between oscillators using aftertouch, creating dynamic and evolving soundscapes.

The keyboard-tracking capabilities of VCF and VCA are also quite versatile. With positive or negative settings available, the keyboard becomes a significant and expressive instrument.


The Kawai K3 is a reputable wavetable synthesizer, appreciated by fans of the PPG Wave series and Prophet VS. It’s a unique instrument, ideal for creating evolving, organic electronic music rather than orchestral string pads. As a hybrid synthesizer, it’s not something you’ll encounter often.

There aren’t many drawbacks to the K3. Simply disable the noisy chorus (if applicable) for an improved experience! Slow envelopes are typical in many mid-80s synthesizers. While its VCF may not be as impressive as those found in “big” polysynths like the Roland Jupiter-8, it surpasses most digital alternatives that emerged later on.

Where to Buy

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