Musical Centre

This is a variant of My Music Center with a beautiful oval case with 8 animal face keys. By its shape this case was likely originally created for Stereo Playkeys!, since the animals correspond exactly to the animal voices of the latter. The case also has 2 speaker grills although only one speaker is built-in. The plastic smelled a bit bad of solvents when new and the power switch was oiled so much with petrol (motor oil?), that I had to clean it with isopropanol to make proper contact. The brand name on the box is in Chinese and there is a little comic boy on the brand label.

main features:


Here you see the pitch controls, volume knob and the additional key buttons added by me.


Shitshooting the program by overclocking often results in strange keyboard sounds (e. g. hissy noises) and especially the demo melodies start to play with changed instrumentation or all sound sequences (2 demos, 8 accompaniments) and a lot of note mess (= sample data?) play in a loop.


This instrument sounds much like My Music Center (see there), but unfortunately it lacks the 3 greatest main voice timbres ("trumpet", "guitar", "music box") of the latter. Also the "mandolin" of Musical Centre doesn't ring. The "accordion" sounds like "organ" on My Music Center.

The "flute" has a nicely realistic weak hiss component and resembles wooden organ pipes. The "saxophone" resembles a bit a reed organ or melodica. The effect preset sounds can not be used together with rhythm or vibrato. Particularly great is here the "ghost" sound, which is a fading tone with long attack phase like a bowed glass, but with very strong square vibrato. In opposite to the disharmonic "ghost" sounds on many other keyboards this one plays wonderfully melodic and in tune, which is very unusual. The "ambulance" is a tone that toggles between 2 notes; quite interesting is that the toggle timer resets by every new note, thus it does not toggle during fast play or trilled notes, which permits some interesting play techniques. The "telephone" is a fast digital dual tone telephone ring sound which ends after about a second. The "police car" is a harsh siren.

This wonderful instrument seems to be very rare; I bought the last in a shop which never got new ones, and unlike My Music Center I yet nowhere saw any others. But I once saw a My Music Center version with the same start-up jingle (recognizable by the sound presets labelled "flute" and "saxophone", red case like the normal My Music Center), thus I am not sure how much similarities these have or if they were even the same hardware class. (I only quickly tested it in a turkish shop, but didn't examine it closer.) Also at eBay I saw later this My Music Center variant, and by the description it is likely the same hardware class like my Musical Centre. A direct successor of the Musical Centre hardware may be the bizarre Jin Xin Toys JX-20165 (which has 36 sound variants).

Attention: At eBay I saw a black rectangular toy keyboard that is also named "Musical Centre", but it seems to be just a Yongmei hardware variant (see here) that has absolutely nothing to do with this one.

 removal of these screws voids warranty...    
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