RockJam RJ361 61-Key Portable Electric Keyboard

£49.99

(as of 07/05/2020 09:09 GMT*)
*Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.co.uk at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
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Description

  • 61 keys
  • Metronome functions
  • Two teaching modes
  • 46 note record and playback
  • 200 voices and 200 rhythms
  • 12 different percussion instruments
  • Headphone connection and microphone jack
  • 40 demo songs
  • Duel tone and split keyboard function
  • Sustain, vibrato and transpose function
  • Intro and ending accompaniment
  • Free songs through the Simply Piano App
  • MP3 playback through USB or aux

RockJam RJ361 61-key electric keyboard review

This keyboard has a lot to offer and is more than worthy of a review. The price tag of around £45 is what initially attracted me to this, and whilst you would expect to hear a fairly poor quality of sound, I was hoping to be proven wrong. Here’s my review!

Sound

I wasn’t expecting to hear anything great from this if I’m honest, all down to the fact that it costs less then £50. But in all fairness it wasn’t actually that bad. It’s hard for me to review keyboard this cheap because I have been playing expensive pianos and keyboards for many years, but it’s all about perspective.

If you put yourselves in the shoes of a parent buying this for their child, and go even one further and imagine you are a young child looking to learn and this is your first keyboard – I think you would be more than happy. The sound is adequate for what you need at this level, and with this aimed at the beginner market you would be satisfied with your purchase.

There are lots of sounds to choose from which I will cover shortly, and all in all I had a lot of fun flicking through as many as I could. The accompanying rhythms again get the job done, and I was surprised that the beats didn’t crackle the speakers as they so often do on really cheap keyboards.

Features

This is where the keyboard really starts to shine, because the RockJam RJ361 is literally packed with some very awesome features. The whole idea behind learning to play the keyboard is to have fun playing along to the in-built rhythms using pretty much any instrument you want over the top (or whatever the keyboard has) – like flutes, brass, vibraphones, pianos, electric pianos, synth pads, strings, and much more. The one thing that did frustrate me a little was the fact that you have to guess what tones come next after the number 38. It seemed like they ran out of room so just decided to put ‘Popular tones’ for the rest, which feels a bit lazy to me. Instead, RockJam could have categorised the tones like they do on their later models and put them into sections to allow them to fit on the top of the keyboard. But only a small gripe and you would likely get used to the voices you liked and remember the number.

The speakers are only about 4 watt so don’t pack too much of a punch, but the volume is enough and you could always connect this through the AUX to louder speakers if you wanted. You can also connect headphones which is great for practising quietly, and you can also connect a microphone. So a lot of features already and there’s still more to come.

You can record up to 46 notes at once and play them back. I would personally prefer to be able to record more notes, but again, this keyboard is very cheap and aimed at children and/or beginners. If you wanted a better recording function you would of course need to pay a lot more. I would just be grateful that this had a recording function for the price anyway. I nice feature to have no matter how many notes it offers to record. 46 notes is actually a lot more than you think when you give it a go, and young children and beginners would have a lot of fun.

You also get an intro and ending function which allows you to start and end your songs. These sound great and will add to the overall experience of creating your own band or orchestra. Finally, another stand out feature for me are the free downloadables through the Simply Piano app. Lots of songs to get started with and it’s a great tool to begin your learning experience.

Price and summary

If you want to spend less than £50 on a keyboard for your child or yourself as a beginner, then this would be absolutely fine. The market is very saturated between the £60-£100 price point, and if you have that kind of money to spend the I wouldn’t recommend this keyboard. You will of course get a better sound if you spend a bit more and a few more features.

But this review wouldn’t be fair if I weren’t to take into account how much this costs and what you get. At the time of writing this review it comes in at around £45. This is an unbelievable price for a keyboard which has a decent sound and lots of voices and rhythms, as well as a huge amount of additional features you wouldn’t expect to see. So if you only want to spend £45 then go and get this one – it’s an easy choice!

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