Nord Electro 6 HP Keyboard
Overview by GAK
Take a close look at any major artist or groups live setup and you are likely to see a Nord Electro. This legendary keyboard has become an industry standard for serious players since the Electro’s inception back in 2001.
Here’s what Nord say:
"Electro means ‘Electro-mechanical’. When the Electro range began it was aimed predominantly at that market – the live player who needs great sounding acoustic pianos and electro-mechanical keyboards plus an organ section that covered the B3 and classic transistor organs – all in one instrument".
“The Nord Electro range has seen many improvements over the years with the current version being the Electro 6, but, at its core, it is still geared towards the musician who needs all those retro instruments and the hands-on control that comes with them. Different models with different keybeds have also been introduced to fine-tune the instrument for a players requirements – essential for an instrument that is both a piano and an organ”.
Powerful Sound Engines
Like all Nord keyboards, the front panel contains all the functions you require for hands-on manipulation of your sounds without the need to menu dive or a software editor. The Electro 6 is divided into four sections for easy navigation.
The 6D’s organ section features Nord’s award-winning C2D organ simulations of the B3 Tonewheel, B3 Vintage and Bass Transistor Organs, plus two additional Pipe Organ models.
The B3 Tonewheel simulation packs four different settings ranging from a fresh from the factory clean to leaky old vintage tone, all offering fantastic authenticity.
The 6D’s two Pipe Organ models include the brand new ‘Pipe 1’, which offers a pure organ tone with few harmonics and ‘Pipe 2’, which is an accurate emulation of the metal pipes that form the bedrock of classic pipe or church organs. There's also a special detune mode when enabling Vibrato/Chorus.
Over at the 6D’s classic transistor organs, you'll find impeccable simulations of the classic 1960’s Farfisa Compact and Vox Continental models.
Adding further character to the 6D organ section is the vintage 122 rotary speaker simulation, which adds essential character and warmth to your tone. There's slow, fast and stop modes with an additional drive control.
The Piano section is where you would access all the acoustic grands, uprights, electro-mechanical Rhodes and Wurlies plus the electric and digital FM style pianos, as well as your classic Clavs and harpsichords.
The new ‘Layer’ category is an additional section with rich dynamic layered patches that allow for some serious experimentation. The sampling techniques that Nord have applied to their piano library is state-of-the-art. The source instruments’ true character and subtle nuances are captured with the utmost detail, whilst the ‘Advanced String Resonance’ delivers breath-taking realism with an unparalleled level of expressiveness.
The new piano section gives you further control over your tone and expression thanks to all-new piano filters for accentuating softness, mid or brilliance. Furthermore, the piano section features four dynamic curves, ranging from soft to hard and a soft-release mode that ads a marginally longer release suitable for legato playing, emulating the looser damper tension found in various acoustic or electromechanical instruments.
Superb Samples + Synths
The Electro 6 also has a Sample/Synth section where you can load any samples from the Nord Sample Library so you can layer your pianos with strings or supplement your retro instruments with any other sounds you want, including synths – all for free. The sampler section allows you to sculpt the sound with controls for attack, decay/release and dynamics (filter/velocity).
Versatile FX Section
The Electro 6’s impressive array of effects are all delivered in stereo and modelled on sought-after stompboxes. Each is assignable to any one of the Organ, Piano or Synth sections.
The effects are split across 6 sections, spanning nine knobs. Effects 1 covers Tremolo, two Wahs, an Auto-Wah and an AutoPan. Effect 2 features two Phasers, two Choruses, a Flanger and a Vibe.
There’s also a 3-band EQ with a sweepable mid and a delay (with tap tempo, feedback and ping pong controls).
Finally, the reverb section boasts three modes - Hall, Stage and Room. Each reverb type can also be enhanced via a ‘Bright Mode’ that adds extra top-end shimmer and clarity.
Flexible Performance Features
All three sections can be layered together or the keyboard can be split into two zones and any combination of the three sections can be mapped to these zones. Plus the Electro 6 has some nifty features too, such as allowing you to connect a controller keyboard to it via MIDI and turn it into a dual manual organ, with both manual sounds coming from and being controlled by the Electro 6.
The Electro 6 range can seamlessly transition between its various sounds and programs mid-performance, reducing load times and keeping you on track when using the Electro for multiple sound applications during a single song. The updated interface is really simple to master. The Organise Mode provides you with copy/paste and move options that allow you to arrange your programs in the order best suited to your requirements. Further program section updates include the new page view, which lets you easily organise your pages into song lists for super quick recall during live performances.
The Nord Electro 6 is incredibly lightweight considering the sheer power and features onboard. Weighing in at just 11.4 kg, it’s far from a behemoth to carry around and is a lot lighter than other stage keyboards. On stage, its modest size makes it compatible with most keyboard stands, as well as Nord’s own nifty soft case series that allow you to carry the piano like a rucksack.
Expandable – for free!
As with the other keyboards in the Nord range, the Electro 6 is expandable. It is compatible with both the Nord Piano Library and the Nord Sample Library. This means you can swap out any sounds on the Electro 6 for any in the libraries to customise the instrument to work the way you want it to. And these are all free. Plus Nord are always adding new instruments to their libraries so, if a new piano comes out, you can download it for free and try it out. And, if you wanted to, you could use Nord’s Sample Editor 3 software to make up your own Sample Instruments and load those into your Electro 6 too. Therefore, your Electro 6 never goes out of date.
Different Models For Different Players
The playing style for a piano and an organ are quite different. This would normally be a dilemma in a keyboard that caters for both types of instrument. And that is why Nord produces different models in the Electro range.
If you are a Piano player and looking for a more portable instrument that also includes organ sounds, the Electro 6HP is the model we recommend. It has a weighted yet slightly lighter action than a traditional 88 note piano, more suited to the electro-mechanical pianos, but still providing a nice weighted touch suitable for acoustic pianos too. And it has the Nord ladder strip LED drawbars instead.
If you are an Organ player and only use piano sounds occasionally, then you may prefer the feel of the other models in the Electro range – the Electro 6D 61 or the Electro 6D 73. The ‘D’ stands for drawbars and these two models feature manual drawbars. However, the main feature with these two models is that they have a semi-weighted ‘waterfall’ organ-style keybed, which means they feel and react to your touch like a real organ.
Overview by Nord
A Refined Modern Classic
The Nord Electro 6 combines our award-winning emulations of vintage electro mechanical and acoustic instruments in an ultra-portable package. With 3 independent sound sections, a new streamlined user interface and the addition of Seamless Transitions, we’re proud to present the most powerful and flexible Electro ever - a refined modern classic.
The Nord Electro 6 features automatically seamless transitions when changing sounds or programs while playing.
Layer and advanced Split Functionality
The panel has three independent sound sections; Organ, Piano and Sample Synth that can be used simultaneously as a layer or a split. It features 6 Split Points and the new Split Point Crossfade functionality introduced with the Stage 3 for smooth transitions between two split zones. Choose from 3 different crossfade widths (Small, Large or Off) as indicated by different LED colors.
Refined Program Section
The new streamlined Program section features a handy Organize mode including Copy/Paste and Move functionality for quickly arranging your Programs to your desired order. A new Page View lets you easily sort and organize pages as a song list.
All Programs, Pianos and Synth Samples are easily navigated using the new List View that offers alphabetical, numerical and category sorting options.
- Three independent sound sections Organ, Piano and Sample Synth that can be used simultaneously as a layer or a split
- 6 Keyboard Split points (C3-F5) with Split Point Crossfade functionality
- Organize/Page mode: Group sets of up to four Programs into Pages, and arrange these using the Organize mode
- 4 Live Slots
- External keyboard feature: Freely assign sound engines to be controlled by an external keyboard, while others are played from the Nord Electro 6.
- 73-key (6 octaves, E-E) Velocity sensitive Hammer Action Portable keyboard
- C2D B3 Tonewheel, B3 Bass, Vox, Farfisa and 2 Pipe organ models
- User adjustable percussion levels, percussion decays and key click level
- Vibrato / Chorus Control with separate functionality for each model (the classic C1, C2, C3, V1, V2, V3 options for the B3, Vibrato for the Farfisa, Chorus/Detune for Pipe organ models )
- 3 Tonewheel modes: select the level of "vintage" desired
- Dual Organ mode for control of two independent manuals
- Manual Organ mode
- Digital LED drawbars
- 1 GB memory dedicated to the Nord Piano Library
- Categories: Grand, Upright, Electric, Digital, Layer and Clav/Harpsichord
- Each category can contain several different models.
- All pianos can be replaced using the Nord Sound Manager application
- Advanced String Resonance-control (Gen 2)
- Soft Release
- 4 Dynamic Curves
- Stereo pianos and samples can be played back in mono
- 120 Voices polyphony for Piano Library sounds.
- 512 MB memory dedicated to the Nord Sample Library
- All samples can be replaced using the Nord Sound Manager application
- The Sample Synth section comes shipped with an extensive selection of one hundred samples from the Nord Sample Library
- Attack and Decay/Release control
- 4 levels of dynamic velocity control
- Velocity sensitive low pass filter
- 46 voice polyphony for Sample Library sounds.
- All effects in Stereo
- Effect 1 - Pan, Tremolo, Wah and Ring Modulator
- Three selectable depths for the Pan and Tremolo, rate controlled with the Effect 1 Rate knob
- Tremolo, Pan, Ring-Mod and Wah can be controlled with Control Pedal
- Effect 2 - Phaser 1, Phaser 2, Flanger, Chorus 1, Chorus 2 and Vibe
- Two selectable depths for each effect
- Comp/Amp - three amp/speaker simulations, compressor, C2D 122 rotary speaker, Tube Overdrive
- Drive/Compression amount controlled with the Drive knob
- Rotary speed controls - Slow, Fast and Stopped
- Close or Normal microphone placement for 122 Rotary Speaker simulation
- User adjustable rotary treble and bass rotor speeds and acceleration rates
- Three band EQ, with sweepable mid. +/- 15 dB gain/attenuation
- Dedicated Reverb with 3 modes - Room, Stage and Hall - all with optional Bright Mode and Dry/Wet control
- Dedicated Delay Effect - Rate, Amount, Tap-tempo and Stereo Ping Pong
- 2 Audio outputs L & R - ¼", 6,35 mm jacks, unbalanced
- 1 Monitor input - 1/8", 3,5 mm stereo jack
- 1 Headphone output - ¼", 6,35 mm stereo jack
- 1 Control pedal input - ¼", 6,35 mm TRS stereo jack, like Yamaha FC7, Roland EV-7, Roland EV-5, Korg EXP2 and Korg XVP10.
- 1 Sustain pedal input - ¼", 6,35 mm jack.
- 1 Rotary Speaker speed switch pedal input - ¼", 6,35 mm jack. Use a momentary pedal or a switch type pedal
- MIDI In, MIDI Out - 5 pin DIN connectors
- USB - type B connector - for transferring sounds and USB MIDI
- IEC C14 power connector
- User Manual
- Power cord
- 1074 mm (42.3") x 121 mm (4.8") x 344 mm (13.5")
- 11.4 kg (25.13 lbs)
An incredibly well-designed and well-made keyboard, perfect for me and for any performing musician. This keyboard will last a long time and is definitely worth what you pay for it. The sampled sounds, especially the pianos, are just incredible, and much better than any others.
The Hamer action keys operate superb, great for piano feel. Organ sounds are the best on the market for the money by far. Very pleased with the Nord 6hp.
Just Great, nice action & good build, sounds good too.
Fantastic kit. This is our 5th Stage piano and definately the best so far. Lovely action!