This is my second review after using one for many months. All the core attributes that make this product so compelling are still in evidence -- so much so that I now have TWO of them (long story).
A few pointers that come with experience?
In tight venues, you may not be able to position it far enough away from your ears to let it "bloom". The result is that everyone else hears wonderful sound, you not so much. It's useful to have someone else play for a bit while you walk around -- the sound changes a lot with just a few feet of "bloom room", but that's not always available.
I bought the Behringer B1200D-PRO subwoofer, which works as advertised, but find myself leaving at home for most gigs -- the native power of the unit is more than enough for what I do. Less is more.
Learning to calibrate levels takes a bit of practice. If you're used to sound levels dropping dramatically with distance, this doesn't. So if you set your levels as you're used to, you'll end up toasting everyone's ears, and your next request being "please turn down".
The side-firing speaker is not pleasant to listen to on its own -- make sure it's not firing directly at a bandmate. One of the more popular orientations is using a small amp stand, placing the unit sideways with the side speaker firing down on the floor and bouncing off. The sound is much more even up close, which is great for all those super-tight venues.
Use a good pair of cables. Due to the technology used, even small cable problems can be greatly magnified. There have been some reports of hum and buzz being picked up from dodgy electric power; a cheap hum eliminator takes care of that.
I have met keyboard players who have tried this and not liked it. Many of them didn't take the time to understand how it works fundamentally different from any other amplification system. Can't help that.
A few had a legitimate preference for full-range, self-powered PA speakers, which cost more, are heavier, take longer to set up, don't provide enveloping sound, etc. I still use my self-powered PAs for some gigs, but -- most of the time -- it's the SSv3 doing all the heavy lifting.
If you gig frequently, are responsible for your own sound, and love stereo -- this is the only real game in town.
So maybe the first couple gigs I didn't "get it," but after dialing it in and altering some presets on my keys and fx I'm totally hooked. Many thanks to Delvin Wolf for recommending it to me and getting it out here super fast.
I notice I don't use eq at all with the spacestation, I used to turn the bass almost all the way off on my behringer 212d. My pianos are beautiful and not muddy at all- the bandleader's face said it all when I played a piano intro on one of the songs. The photographer at a wedding said the organ sounded amazing in the crowd.
My first mistake was having it too close to me, put it a little bit away from you for best 3D sound. Then you get to enjoy it as much as the audience. Lastly, don't even think about playing bass heavy stuff thru it, pair it with a sub for true full-range bliss. Get one!
I think one can always trust Aspen Pittman to come up with something cool, and this is no exception. I bought it for my GR-55 guitar synth, and its absolutely spectacular to run it through for full stereo effects of the patches. Small, light, sounds great, best keyboard amp ever.
Just had to share this follow-up story. After a rehearsal this week, I opened the back of my suv, and BAM... Onto the concrete driveway fell my CPS. (I didn't know whether to cry or go berserk & start hitting & swinging at any nearby objects.) My heart was sinking. Lesson learned - stack it on its side so it won't fall over / out of my suv.
SO, I was scared for the hour-plus drive to rehearsal that it may not work (I did have a cheap backup monitor if needed.) The CPS took a solid wallop from 3ft. up, landing directly on the front corner. It made a huge 'thud', even bouncing and hitting hard on the back corner, showing visible scuffs and an oh-so slight tear on the tolex cover, so my head was telling me that this was bound to be tragic. I knew that cheaper gear would not resist that kind of impact.
Until... (Drum roll, please.....)
I got to rehearsal and plugged in my CPS. It powered up, and worked like a charm!!! The knobs were all intact, no external noise, and nothing was loose. I was ecstatic! Relief would be an understatement. Yeah, this was totally my fault - a musician throwing all his gear in the back of his suv and headed to a gig / rehearsal, not thinking that sometimes things get shifted around in the back. We've all done it, but not anymore. Lesson learned!
I just thought y'all would like to know how solid this thing is built. I love this keyboard amp. I've recorded my Nord organs through it, and it definitely sounds better mic'd up than being run direct in stereo into my Pro Tools rig. Nothing like moving air when recording. I've used on a couple dozen or so gigs now, and it works like a charm.