Two years ago we reviewed the latest revision of the venerable Apex columnar keyboard stand from Ultimate Support. Admittedly, we have personally used these stands since the 1980s, so the Apex is something we were very familiar with. The V-Stand takes on quite a different shape, and recently, Ultimate Support has not only revamped the design, but also introduced an optional second tier.
The basic stand can hold up to 150 pounds, and is height-adjustable from twenty-seven to forty inches. The stand weighs just slightly over eighteen pounds, which is heavier than expected when you see its initial, compact size. A cool feature is that the stand can fold down into a smaller configuration for easy transport (see below), and it includes a travel bag.
Assembly is a bit more involved than users of the Apex columns are used to, and we had to put a little more sweat equity into putting the V-stand into operation, though this was not difficult. The bottom legs need to be pulled out (width), and the height is adjustable via clamps that snap into place. Each leg has clips to hold cables, continuing the sleek look.
The second tier also takes a little bit of effort to set up as well, though again, not too difficult. There are instructions that show you what do to (which includes prying off the plastic end caps of the main stand arms), and with this particular stand, we encourage reading the instructions. The second tier is both height- and angle-adjustable, which is a nice touch. Perhaps coolest of all, there is a leveling window on each clamp to help you get things perfectly balanced (see below):
When all is said and done, we liked the V Stand. The obvious advantage of the stand (especially compared with the Apex) is that there is plenty of room for your sustain and effects pedals (yes, keyboard players use those too)! As great as the Apex is, having little room for pedals in front while playing has always been a challenge. Not so with the V Stand. And another advantage over the Apex is that although there is a little more work to set it up, it folds down into a very compact size, which is great for transport or storage when not in use.
The only main quibble we had was that there was a little bit of wobble once set up… because we didn’t fully read the instructions! After discussing our seemingly unstable stand with the good folks at Ultimate Support, we were made aware of a feature we completely overlooked: the V-Stand Pro uses a unique end cap on the support arms (a patented design) that is meant to combat this precise problem. One of the two end caps has an unusual, asymmetrical shape. The idea is, you simply rotate that cap to achieve a desired height/balance adjustment to compensate for any uneven playing surface, essentially an elegant way of putting napkins under a table leg. Now you know—if the stand wobbles on you, there’s a built-in adjustment.
Price & Contact Information
The V Stand Pro VS-88B sells for $199.99, and the second tier VSIQ-200B sells for $79.99. It’s a solid, modern looking stand that many keyboardists will be happy with, pedals and all.