Casio Rapman - with Voice-Effector RAP-1 (digital children keyboard with voice changer)

This keyboard from 1991 has many rap/ rock/ house rhythms and a weird sounding microphone voice pitch changer which can be used to feed the own keyboard sounds back through it as an effect.

main features:




Touching the crystal pins with metal crashes the cpu and often makes very interesting drum rhythm mess. I found no satisfying way yet to replace the crystal with anything controllable that has a wide enough frequency range for a good pitchbend, but modifications for this are planned. Also a shitshot by re-plugging the AC adapter can mess up the sounds in sometimes interesting ways.

The property that there is only a 3 voice polyphony which reduces to 1 voice when rhythm plays (no matter whether the selected rhythm makes use of the 2 occupied melodic voices) is a sign of very poor software design. I guess that the hardware can manage at least 4 voice polyphony, of which unfortunately one voice is always statically assigned to the percussion sounds of rhythm and drumpads (even when none are used). It is a pity that nothing can be reprogrammed in this instrument; some sounds (sitar, wah- vox etc.) are very nice.

If you like this keyboard's voice changer, also watch out for the Casio VA-10, which is a small home keyboard with digital effect processor for the internal keyboard sounds and monophonic microphone input (stereo reverbs, pseudo- vocoder and much other strange digital sound stuff). The sound quality of this one is not really better than the Rapman, but way more versatile and polyphonic. Beside the Rapman RAP-1, Casio also released (later?) a belt- mountable rhythm/ scratch sound toy with voice changer named Rapman RAP-10 (5 scratch variants, 4 drumpads, 10 rhythms, seen on eBay but I don't own one).

 removal of these screws voids warranty...    
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