Jump to content

Keyboards & "handles"


Recommended Posts



In your opinion, which is the better , pertaining to the location of the button patern?  That 70 button Wheatstone (McCann)  or a 48 button Edeo or Aeola?


What strikes me is that, 'duets', have their 'button' patterns shiften north to allow for a wristband.

How do they manage that?

I don't mean to pick on you, Joe, but because I'm a stickler for precision I have to correct a couple of "errors" in your query:

..1) I presume you mean an English system when you say "a 48 button Edeo or Aeola", but duets also come in Æola and Edeophone models (the 70-button one you refer to is itself an Æola) and can come with 48 or fewer buttons. (Small Maccann's are generally 46 buttons rather than 48, but I've seen several 48-button Crane duets. My Edeophone Crane is 55 buttons.)

..2) Duets (and anglos) don't have wristbands. The strap across the back of the palm shouldn't come anywhere near the wrist. Some Englishes do have wrist straps, in addition to the standard thumb loops and finger plates, but they serve a very different purpose from the hand straps of duets and anglos.

..3) Do you really think it's reasonable to compare a 70-button duet with a 48-button English? Why not a 48-button duet with a 70-button English? Or a 3½-octave (58 buttons, because of the overlap between the hands) duet with a 3½-octave (48 button) English?


I do find that my reach toward both low and high ends of the keyboard is more restricted with the bar-and-strap than with the loop-and-plate support of the English system, but it's only my short little fingers that have trouble reaching the most distant buttons with the former, even on the 7-deep button arrays of the larger duets. But there are others who report that the reverse is true for them. So in my opinion, neither is inherently "better". But even if one were to compare


There's another significant difference. The English keyboard is only 4 buttons wide, and normally extends down between the thumb loop and finger plate. To do that with even the 5-wide Crane keyboard would force the loop and plate far enough apart that I think it would greatly restrict the motion of all but very large hands. Perhaps there are ways to improve upon the standard bar-and-strap design for duets (and anglos), but the loop-and-plate design doesn't appear to be one, though I personally think it's wonderfully suited to the English keyboard.


Also, the distance between a duet's support bar and the nearest buttons can vary from instrument to instrument, and I've heard of at least one individual who found that a difference of only 3mm in this dimension made a considerable difference in his playing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...