The Pa500 Oriental version of Korg's Pa500 was designed for the many Middle Eastern musicians. A pressing need when playing Middle Eastern music on a Western instrument is the ability to access quarter-tone/Arabic scales on the fly. A miniature one-octave keyboard has been added to the Pa500 ORT front panel, and each key is equipped with an LED. This allows the user to quickly select the notes that will be flatted to the nearest quarter-tone. This function is always available so that the quarter-tone selection can be made instantly during performance. In addition, four preset buttons provide one-touch access to the most commonly used quarter-tone scales.
More than 100 new and authentic sounds have been added to provide enhanced realism to the performance of Middle Eastern music, covering a range of both the classical and folk genres. New classical instrument highlights feature Kanon, Nay, Oud, Kawala and Arabic Strings, as well as a special Orchestra sound using 11 oscillators. Added folk instruments include Mejwez, Mezwed, Yargohol, Zukra, Chubebe, Zurna and 10 different Chabi sounds. The Pa500 ORT also provides 805 dedicated drum samples featuring instruments such as Tabla, Req, Daf, Bandir, Tabel, Katem, Kasur and Khishabah, along with authentic voices such as Halla, Yalla, Hey, Zagruta and more.
The PA Series' Style engine scans the musician''s playing for voice leading, chord content and timing information, and can add anything from simple drums and percussion, drum and bass, guitar strumming or anything up to an eight-piece ensemble to enhance performances on the fly. The Pa500 ORT features dozens of specially composed music Styles that are available immediately. For each Style, the user can access six different intros and six different endings, each playing in a different Arabic scale. The Pa500 ORT also provides 128 Oriental PAD sequences that are compatible with the Arabic Scales. Included in the new Styles are Classical Music Styles such as Wahda, Maksum, Baladi, Ayoub, Masmudi, Samai 10/8 and Folk Music Styles such as Saidi, Katakofti, Nawari, Fallhi, Laf and many more. "Middle Eastern," "Arabic" and "Oriental" are broad terms musically, so the Pa500 ORT also includes special regional Styles developed for Tunisia, Morocco, Iraq and Khaligi musical genres.
The Korg Pa500 ORT Interactive Workstation is currently available, with an MSRP of $2,299.