If you found yourself disappointed that hours with Guitar Hero didn’t actually teach you how to play guitar, there’s some good news. Roli, makers of the strange and intriguing Seaboard, just announced a light up keyboard called the Lumi, that will actually help you learn how to play the piano.
The Lumi itself is a two-octave, 24-key keyboard with traditional piano-style keys that can light up in multiple colors as you play, Bluetooth networking, and a rechargeable battery. If you want a bigger soundscape to mess around on, Lumis are modular and can be connected to each other up to a 72 key setup. But the real draw is how the hardware works with the Lumi app, which will include a library of songs that you can play along with using a number of different visual styles from the classic “note highway” view of games like Guitar Hero and Rock Band, to modes that actually show sheet music with a little bit of color coding to help you out. In addition to songs, the app will also include actual lessons that are more directly aimed at teaching you practice and theory instead of just jamming out.
The catch is that the Lumi isn’t available yet, and is being crowdfunded through Kickstarter. It’s always wise to be wary, since crowdfunding campaigns implode all the time, but Roli is an established company with plenty of previous success in production, so this is probably a safer bet than most. As of this writing, the campaign has already reached its goal, and early bird packages (which include one Lumi keyboard and the Lumi app for $164) are quickly selling out. Non-early bird packages go for $184, and the Lumi and app pair will ultimately retail for $250. The Lumi is slated to ship this October, with Kickstarter backers at the front of the line.
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