I have a two keyboard stand and i can adjust the height and angle of the second keyboard holder.

Right now I have it approximately 20 cm above the first keyboard and slightly tilted towards me, the angle is maybe 5-10 degrees.

I'm sitting and when i lift my hand to play the second keyboard it's comfy but not when i try to reach the knobs or other controls beyond the notes.

My question is: How should a second keyboard be placed above the first?

  • 20cm is MUCH bigger than the AGO standard for organs with multiple keyboards, where the recommended spacing is 6.3 cm vertically 10.8 cm horizontally.Of course that may be physically impossible with your keyboards, but it allows the thumb of one hand to play the lower keyboard at the same time as the fingers play the upper one. Tilting the top keyboard is fine if it makes it more accessible, though organs don't usually have tilted keyboards unless there are 4 or more stacked above each other - but in a 4-manual pipe organ the gap between top and bottom is still a bit less than your 20cm. – user19146 Jan 23 '17 at 20:05
  • @alephzero Comparing with an organ is only going to be possible for keyboards that have no controls above the keyboard itself. I think there are a few MIDI controllers that have no auxiliary controls above the keybed, but in general this is a very tricky problem to solve. I like this question a lot even though I'm not 100% sure it's a good fit here. – Todd Wilcox Jan 23 '17 at 20:11
  • Regarding the question, I think it's largely personal preference (and therefore a bit off-topic). If your primary concern is comfort, and you can't make it comfortable to have one keyboard above the other, then you might have to put the second keyboard to the side. One thing I will say is that any keyboards with fully-weighted keys, like a piano, I recommend it be the lowest of the keyboards, for ergonomics. – Todd Wilcox Jan 23 '17 at 21:06
  • At the bottom I have a synth with fully-weighted keys and a Roland Juno Gi over it on top. I think there must be some rule for best perfomance issues. I don't think that every keyboard player places them the way they like it. – SovereignSun Jan 23 '17 at 21:47
  • 1
    If you've studied the positioning of keyboards by many professional keyboard players, then you probably have a better sense than I of what is commonly accepted. If you haven't, then that might lead you to some answers. One reason why I don't believe there are broad standards is that everyone has their own sets of keyboards, arm lengths, and playing styles. And that's to say nothing about acceptable stage footprints and monitoring issues, etc. I myself have gone through several different arrangements based on many changing parameters. – Todd Wilcox Jan 23 '17 at 22:56

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.