I am in an office band and have to be able to play two different instruments. We are currently in a rehearsal studio that has an 88-key on the bottom and a synthesizer on top. For example, on "Roadhouse Blues," the bottom piano serves as a bass guitar and the top serves as the organ.

Eventually, we are going to play at office functions and wanted to see if there are specific models that would allow the left side of the piano/keyboard to be the bass and the right to be the organ? The drummer said his daughter uses an Artesia that has that capability, but I am curious if other people have some ideas.

Thank you to anyone who can help.

  • 5
    Yes, many electronic pianos allow to split keyboard. Specific recommendations are off topic. Jul 21 at 21:03
  • Looking for "split" keyboard capacity will help! Most of them are able of this these days, or at the midi level or in terms of the produced sounds.
    – Tom
    Jul 21 at 21:04
  • Top models of (music work stations) have single keyboards that will play different instruments on each half of the keyboard.
    – ejbpesca
    Jul 22 at 13:32

3 Answers 3


It would almost be hard to find a performance keyboard that DIDN'T have this feature! 'Layers' (e.g. Piano/Strings across the whole keyboard) and 'Splits' (e.g. Bass on the lower half of the keyboard, Piano or Organ on the top half) are the terms to look for.


Most single keyboards 61 to 88 note, have had the split* facility for many years now. Split into two, and with the capacity to choose the split point, as well as which instruments are left or right. And, you can change the octave on 61 keys, so that lower or higher notes than the 'standard' can be produced.

We don't do instrument recommendations on this site, so none forthcoming from me.

The only fly in the ointment may be that you prefer playing, say, a piano sound with a piano action, and an organ sound with an organ action. As far as I know, nothing is that sophisticated - yet. But as far as the more usual splits are concerned, pno/bass is up at the top, and some of my k'bds have the facility to play layered, where both come out simultaneously, all the way up the board, another idea you may want to explore. There's also on nearly all the facility to MIDI from one mother board to one or several modules, giving te same ideas you ask about, using a single k'bd.

  • Interestingly, most parlor organs from the late 1800s also offered the ability to select different registration on the left and right halves, though they varied as to where they put the split point.
    – supercat
    Jul 22 at 18:50

I think it would be surprising to find a modern-day offering of a somewhat advanced keyboard/arranger that did not offer such capabilities.

I use arrangers/expanders from Ketron/Solton from the early 1990s (this would be the MS40, MS50, MS60, MS80, MS100 series) and there you piece together a "program" where you can pick patches (instruments) based on a "split point" on the keyboard or on key velocity (different instruments depending on how hard you strike) or on polyphony (when multiple keys are pressed, the lower gets a different patch from the higher one).

While that was pretty classy stuff at its time, its time was 30 years ago. So I'd be surprised if that kind of functionality, at least governed by a split point, were not very much standard with today's offerings.

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