The Nord Stage made its debut at the Musikmesse trade show in Frankfurt, Germany, in April 2005. The first version featured 88 fully-weighted keys and was released in July 2005. In January 2006, a 76-weighted key variation called Stage 76 was unveiled at NAMM. The compact version with 73 weighted keys, known as Stage Compact, started shipping in August 2006. In November of the same year, the extended Nord Stage EX model with increased memory capacity was released.

In September 2011, the Nord Stage 2 was introduced, featuring enhancements to the synthesizer and sampler sections, inspired by the Nord Wave. The Stage 2 series included three models: HA-88 with 88 fully-weighted keys, HA-76 with 76 weighted keys, and SW-73 with 73 semi-weighted keys. In 2015, the updated Stage 2 EX model with expanded memory capacity was announced.

The Nord Stage 2 introduces a sampling feature, allowing users to emulate pre-recorded instrument sounds. Samples can be downloaded from Clavia’s website or third-party sources and loaded into the Stage 2 using a computer application. The standard instrument includes samples designed for the Mellotron and Chamberlin keyboards, which are exclusively licensed for use by Clavia. Users also have the ability to create their own samples and load them into the Stage 2 using provided tools.

There are three versions of the Nord Stage 2, each offering different features and options. This Nord Stage 2 review will explore the differences between these models and provide recommendations based on their capabilities. The Nord Stage HA88 features 88 key hammer-action keyboards, while the Nord Stage SE73 offers 73 key hammer-action keyboards.

The Nord Stage HA76 is similar to the HA88 model but has a different number of keys, specifically 76 hammer-action keys. Each model is a great choice, depending on your level of playing experience and budget. The Nord Stage HA88 is approximately 1/3 more expensive than the Nord Stage SE73, and the Nord Stage HA76 is priced similarly to the HA88 and SW73 models.

With a wide range of price points available, you have a good opportunity to find a suitable option for your needs.

Nord Stage 2


Everyone should be familiar with their roots. If you’re a musician, you’ve likely heard of Nord, which was founded in 1983 when Hans Nordelius introduced the Digital Percussion Plate 1 (DPP1). This percussion plate was unlike anything available at the time, as it was the first instrument you could play using a digital representation of sound.

The DPP1 gained popularity quickly. It utilized real drum heads and pads to achieve an authentic drum sound. Many percussionists still rave about the original DPP1 and its groundbreaking design. Nord has since become a success story, starting in Hans Nordelius’ basement and growing significantly over time.

The initial digital percussion plate transformed into a globally renowned business that musicians rely on for their equipment.

In 1995, Clavia released its first product, the Nord Lead. The Nord Lead offered a fresh approach to synthesis, combining realistic sound with an intuitive interface that instantly captivated professionals, DJs, and musicians. In 1996, Magnus Kjellander joined Clavia and introduced a new perspective on software creation and utilization. By 1997, the Nord Modular was ready for release as the first-ever virtual modular synthesizer, marking a pinnacle of innovation and design.

In 2001, Clavia introduced the Nord Electro, a keyboard that offered exceptional emulations of classic electromechanical instruments along with unparalleled portability.In 2005, the Nord Stage entered the market, successfully blending various emulations and effects such as piano, organ, and a dedicated synthesizer section.

The Nord C1 Combo Organ body was also unveiled in 2005. The Nord Lead continued to make waves by allowing any sound file to be used as an oscillator source in a virtual space.

In 2011, the Nord Stage 2 was introduced, offering expanded memory for the Nord Stage and a range of advanced features. The Nord Stage 2 set a new standard for all stage pianos.

Nord Stage 2


Each of the three models offers the same capabilities when it comes to sound.

They all feature three sound generators: Organ, Synthesizer, and Piano. You can use all three simultaneously, and even combine two sounds from each section into one program, giving you incredible flexibility. The “Organ” section showcases a third-generation B3 organ model, which is a faithful replica of the renowned North C2 organ in North America. Many consider it to be one of the best B3 emulations available, and a lot of effort went into creating circuits that could accurately reproduce the sound of the B3 and other classic organs.

The Synth section on the Nord Stage 2 is particularly impressive. The new synthesizer was specifically developed for the Stage 2 and is based on the DNA of the Nord Wave, making it a powerful tool for essential synthesis. But it doesn’t stop there. It is also compatible with the Nord Sample Library and offers three synthesizers for FM and Wavetable synthesis. The integration with the Nord Sample Library is a significant step forward since this extensive and free library was previously exclusive to Nord Electro 3 and Nord Wave users.

The new Stage 2 synthesizer, built from the Nord Wave DNA, provides modulation, dual-viewed oscillators, and continuous synchronization. It gives you access to thirty-two unique waveforms for shaping your sound, and the Wavetable offers sixty-two waveforms and presets.

The piano section of the Nord Stage 2 is meticulously crafted and captures the nuanced details you would expect. All three models of the Nord Stage 2 feature the Long Release function, allowing for legato playing. The piano section of the Nord Stage 2 allows you to achieve the exact sound you’re seeking, with exceptional realism and expressiveness.

The Nord Stage 2 offers a range of features and capabilities. Here is a brief summary of its features:

  • Acoustic pianos based on sampled sounds
  • Authentic vintage electric pianos
  • Enhanced string resonance (Gen 2)
  • Long release for sustained piano sounds
  • Dynamic pedal noise with the optional Nord Triple Pedal
  • Compatibility with the Nord Piano Library
  • Versatile synthesis options including analog, FM, and Wavetable synthesis
  • Sample playback capability
  • Compatibility with the Nord Sample Library
  • Arpeggiator function
  • Master clock for synchronization
  • Modeling of the tone wheel organ B3
  • Accurate emulations of Vox and Farfisa organs
  • Advanced rotary speaker simulation with various modes (slow, fast, stop)
  • Drawbars with LED indicators for easy visualization of dynamic drawbar settings
  • “Effects” section with a wide range of high-quality effects
  • Single-function control knobs for quick adjustment of current settings
  • External input that allows the Nord Stage 2 to function as a master keyboard
  • Advanced split and layering functions with up to five zones
  • USB-MIDI connectivity without the need for a driver on Mac OS X; a WHQL-certified driver is available for Windows.

These features make the Nord Stage 2 a versatile and powerful instrument for musicians and performers.


There is minimal difference between the three models, especially in terms of their features.

All three models offer the same set of features, and they can all be expanded with accessories. However, the variations between the models become apparent when it comes to the types of accessories that can be connected to the Stage 2.

The HA88 is the top-of-the-line model and provides access to all the premium accessories, but at an additional cost

The refinement in cost is?

If you are a professional musician, the HA88 would be the ideal choice for you because it offers all the necessary accessories and provides a wide range of possibilities and functionalities. You will have a lot of fun exploring and experimenting with the HA88, and it will allow you to make connections and discoveries that you may not have even considered before.

However, if you have a limited budget or don’t require all the additional accessories, you can still get exactly what you need from the other two models. Although you may have to sacrifice some accessories, you can still achieve great results and enjoy a fulfilling musical experience with the other models.

Generally speaking

The stage presence of the Nord Stage 2 is truly impressive. Its appearance is stunning, and its performance is even better. The keys are meticulously calibrated, providing a natural feel. The sound quality is exceptional, and the interface is intuitive and user-friendly.

Every Nord Stage 2 undergoes thorough setup and testing at the factory to ensure it is ready to play right out of the box. Clavia has invested a great deal of care and expertise into the Nord Stage 2.

Users who have acquired different models of the Nord Stage 2 have expressed similar praise for its sound. They all consider the sound to be outstanding.

However, some users have mentioned that there is a learning curve associated with using the Nord Stage 2. However, the majority of them believe that once they become familiar with it, they find it easy to use. It is relatively easy to become accustomed to the Nord Stage 2.

There are no significant complaints about the Nord Stage 2. Everyone who owns one finds it to exceed their expectations. It is well-designed and requires a certain level of dedication to the learning process, but once you become familiar with it, you can easily use the Nord Stage 2 for a wide range of musical performances

Overall, the Nord Stage 2 is highly recommended for all three models.These instruments are well-designed, meticulously crafted, and highly innovative. You cannot go wrong with Nord!


I have been using the Clavia Nord Stage 88 for the past six months and have found it to be a truly enchanting instrument. The sound quality is exceptional, and the controls make it easy to customize and adjust the sounds to my liking. Initially, I had some concerns about its size, but after spending time playing the Clavia Nord Stage 88, I realized that its compactness is actually a benefit. The interface is well-designed, and I particularly appreciate the traditional pitch setting for the modulation wheel.

Although it is the most expensive keyboard I have purchased, the Nord Stage 88 has a relatively minimal number of features compared to other keyboards on the market. It lacks some advanced functionalities like a sequencer, sampler, or percussion instruments. However, this keyboard is not meant to be a jack-of-all-trades; it excels as a musical instrument in its own right, which sets it apart from other keyboards like the Korg Triton or Roland Fantom.

The Nord Stage is a device that truly captivates you. The sounds it produces, particularly the Rhodes and Hammond organ sounds, are exceptional. I find that I can easily recreate the sounds I hear from my favorite musicians when they use similar instruments. The effects and amp simulations are designed in a way that evokes a retro vibe with modern conveniences, which I really appreciate. My only minor complaint is that the acoustic pianos can sound slightly harsh between the C4 and C5 range, but that may be a matter of personal preference.

At the time of my purchase, I didn’t have any concerns about the durability of the Clavia Nord Stage 88, as most high-quality gear nowadays is built to be robust. The Nord Stage 2 has received critical acclaim, including the Platinum award from Future Music Magazine and recognition at industry awards, such as the 2011 MIA Award for Best The Nord Stage 2 was honored with the 2011 MIA Award for Best Equipment and the 2011 MIPA Prize for Best Stage Pianos.These accolades further validate its status as a top-notch stage piano, organ, and synthesizer.