Tag Archives: Akai

Akai MPC Makes A Return With Two New Standalone Models

Back in January at NAMM Akai announced the release of two new additions to the MPC line – the MPC X and the MPC Live, with a clear focus on  bringing back the standalone functionality to the range. Beat fiends around the world are waiting with anticipation for the launch date of the new MPCs and while no solid date is available at the time of writing, what we do know is that it is going to be soon!

I’m one of the lucky folk to have actually had my hands on the MPC X and even though my time was limited I can tell you that it certainly impressed from the off. There are so many features on this new line that I could literally write for a week and will have probably only scratched the surface so I’ll try and keep this short. The first thing you notice when sat in front of the behemoth MPC X is that this thing is huge, it feels like you’re sat at the helm of some other-worldly spaceship armed with rapid fire beat blaster rays! Every control and function you could want is surgically positioned to be at hand when you need it, the encoders feel solid and the little OLED screens above each pot is a very nice touch. We’ve got a plethora of I/O, CV outputs, countless controls, a VU meter, 16 RGB pads and a nice responsive 10.1″ touchscreen which I will come to later.

The pads are tight and responsive just as you would expect from the company that basically swamped the world with the things! The easiest way to describe the pads is – they just work, and they work damn well. They are able to capture every nuance of your performance. If you have played with an MPC before then you will be right at home with either of the new models. The MPC swing returns in full glory, breaking up, yet gluing together your drum hits for a natural swing that works flawlessy.

The screen is a big highlight on this new line. The X has a 10.1″ screen while the Live has a 7″ display, both are way more responsive and tactile than I thought they would be. They work brilliantly, integrating the hands-on approach to a deeper level than previously available. It supports multi touch for pinch and zoom allowing you to snip, chop and move as you please with absolute ease. I was genuinely impressed by how well it worked and I’m sure you will be too!

The Live is a gorgeous little black box which retains most of the features of the X with a much smaller footprint. We lose CV outputs and a lot of encoders and front facing controls but this doesn’t detract from the experience at all, thankfully the touchscreen takes over some duties here – so it’s a good job they’ve done a cracking job with it. It also houses a rechargeable Lithium-ION battery so you can unplug from the box, go and sit in the sun and knock out some beats!

The release of the new MPC line also brings with it MPC Software 2.0, fully loaded with critical in-demand productions and performance capability. Both units are able to record audio directly into the unit and use as audio tracks within MPC. The software was still in late Beta while I played around with it and was already solid, I didn’t experience any glitches or crashes. When hooked up to a PC 2.0 allows you to use VST instruments and effects and then bounce the audio down for use in standalone mode! Absolutely phenomenal.

Now I’ve not mentioned one of the new highlight features yet – clip launching! This is the familiar performance mode found on other devices and gives the MPC another weapon in it’s already formidable arsenal. Add to that the outstanding collection of expansions from well respected sound designers such as Capsun Audio, Loopasters, Toolroom and more, and you have a truly fearsome expandable music machine!

So, if the thought of a brand new, all singing, all dancing Akai MPC gets you all giddy, keep your eyes peeled for more info on the release date. If it gets you more than a little giddy then you might want to get a pre-order in and be one of the first to get hold of one of these beauties! In the meantime, take a look at some videos to get more of an idea what the new line brings to the table.

https://www.scan.co.uk/products/akai-mpc-x-standalone-music-production-center-101-full-colour-multi-touch-display-16gb-of-on-board-s

https://www.scan.co.uk/products/akai-mpc-live-music-production-center-standalone-capable-16-pads-7-inch-multi-touch-display-16gb-on

Akai Launches MIDImix DAW Controller

Akai MIDImix

Cheap, cheerful and potentially very handy, its a combination we all love and the Akai MIDImix controller threatens to do all that when it ships in a few months and could find itself appearing in a lot of setups.

Its an 8 channel mixer, 3 mapable knobs per channel and 2 buttons per channel with default 1 – 1 mapping to Ableton live out of the box.

That’s pretty much it. Simple, portable and a problem solver, all for around £60 when it launches, which is a price point we’re sure will help it find a home in many a studio and artists kit bags on the road.

Akai MIDImix Homepage

Akai Hardware @ Scan

 

Akai Announce The MPX8 SD Sample Launcher

The MPX8 Sample launcher takes one of their controllers and adds the capabilites to load your own samples into the unit allowing you to use it for playback in a live situation. Using a standard SD card, users can load virtually any sample onto MPX8 and then assign it to any of the unit’s eight backlit velocity- and pressure-sensitive pads. The MPX8 also comes with a large library of standard samples built in, which can be used for live performance in front of a crowd, on a radio show, or for in-studio production. Its bright blue backlit display and intuitive interface make for easy operation in any amount of light.

The Akai MPX8 features a 1/8-inch headphone output, two balanced 1/4-inch outputs, and five-pin MIDI and USB MIDI inputs and outputs are onboard.

Akai say:

“With MPX8, we’re giving musicians a quick and convenient way to have one-touch access to a virtually unlimited number of sounds, shots, stabs, and drops,” said Dan Gill, Akai
Professional Product Manager. MPX8 comes with a drag-and-drop sample editor for Mac® and PC for easy sample conversion. Users can also save sample sets together as kits for
easy recall and even tune and add reverb to samples.

MPX8 Features

Akai MPX 8

SD Sample Pad Controller

  • Add sound samples via standard SD card (sold separately)
  • 8 velocity-sensitive and pressure-sensitive pads
  • Drag-and-drop sample editor for Mac and PC included
  • Built-in library of popular sounds, samples, and bumps
  • Tune, add reverb, save sample sets for easy recall
  • USB MIDI plus standard MIDI inputs and outputs
  • 1/8” headphone output and balanced 1/4” outputs

Akai Hardware @ Scan.

Akai Max 25 & 49

Two new controller keyboards announced at NAMM by Akai today. The Max 25 & 49 have all your normal features and a handful of sliders & pads for to cater for your controller needs, plus both of them come with one additional rather suprising feature of a CV gate!

 

 

Akai Max 25MAX25

Compact USB/MIDI/CV Keyboard Controller

  • 25 semi-weighted keys with aftertouch, 4 LED touch faders
  • Included AkaiConnect software automatically maps to VSTs
  • 8 MPC pads, MPC Note Repeat, and MPC Swing
  • 4 pad banks, 4 fader banks: 64 assignable pads, faders, and buttons
  • Step sequencer and expanded arpeggiator
  • CV & Gate outputs (1V/Oct), Mackie Control® and HUI® modes

Akai MAX 49

 

AKAI MAX49

USB/MIDI/CV Keyboard Controller

  • Now includes Avid® Pro Tools® Express
  • 49 semi-weighted keys with aftertouch, 8 LED touch faders
  • Included AkaiConnect software automatically maps to VSTs
  • 12 MPC pads, MPC Note Repeat, and MPC Swing
  • 4 pad banks, 4 fader banks: 176 assignable pads, faders, and buttons
  • Step sequencer and expanded arpeggiator
  • CV & Gate outputs (1V/Oct), Mackie Control® and HUI® modes

Akai Hardware @ Scan

Ableton Push

Two announcements from the Ableton camp today and whilst we were expecting the Ableton 9 announcement the Ableton Push one has caught us and I’m sure most other people rather by surprise.

So we have what looks like a hybrid of the Akai APC series and another Ableton endorsed controller the launchpad, with this controller being designed for Ableton by the aforementioned Akai. The video demo shows off how tactile the unit is and the well tested colour co-ordination being used allows quick and easy triggering of all parts of your track allowing you to quickly build up your songs in the studio and manipulate them easily when playing out live.

Ableton on the Push:

Push is a new instrument that solves an old problem: how to make a song from scratch.With hands-on control of melody and harmony, beats, sounds, and song structure, Push puts the fundamental elements of music making at your fingertips – and it fits in a backpack alongside your laptop.

Push uses the power of Ableton Live running on your computer which provides Push with a comprehensive collection of instruments and effects.

All of your sounds are ready to be played, tweaked, and personalized. Fine-tune parameters in your instruments and effects using Push’s touch-sensitive encoders and see everything from Push’s display.

Improvise and play with song structure, capture all of your musical ideas and quickly duplicate and create variations which you can then trigger, re-arrange, and create new combinations.

Capture everything you play with Push’s unique recording workflow. Overdub new notes or create variations of phrases, moving quickly between your song materials with just a few buttons. After you’ve created ideas, switch to another mode to try them out in various combinations.

When you’re ready to get into arranging, detailed editing, and exporting your finished song, switch from Push to your computer to find your music already laid out in Ableton Live – the software that was powering your work the whole time. Push gives you the best of both worlds for making music: inspiring hardware for hands-on control at the beginning, and full-featured music creation software for fine-tuning the details at the end.

Ableton Push use shot

Ableton push front

For more on the Ableton Push

Ableton Products @ Scan

 

Akai MPC on the Fly

Following on from yesterdays posts about the first two of three new units coming from AKAI we have the third and certainly most interesting piece… The AKAI MPC Fly.

Designed as a “on the fly” tool for your iPad, the MPC Akai Fly means you can take the classic MPC controllability with you in an easy to carry package.

 

The Akai Fly
The Akai Fly

 

MPC Akai Fly  Product Features
MPC Akai Fly Hardware

The first MPC designed specifically for iPad 2
Fitted compartment for iPad 2 provides fully integrated portable MPC solution
16 backlit genuine MPC pads with MPC Note Repeat & MPC Swing
Works seamlessly with the MPC App: sequence & sample editing, effects, EQ and more
Create beats on the go and transfer to a Mac or PC for further mastering
Double-hinged case sits upright, lies flat or closes for transport
Compatible with virtually any Core MIDI app
Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery
Charges iPad when plugged into wall power

MPC Akai Fly Technical Specifications
General

Pads: 16 velocity sensitive with aftertouch. backlit by velocity
UI Buttons: Ideal performance controls available, including:
Note Repeat
Transport Controls
Mute / Solo
Track Select
Erase
Timing Correct

Height: 1.2 inches (30.5mm)
Width: 9.7 inches (246mm)
Depth: 8.0 inches (203mm)
Weight: 2.02 pounds (0.92kg)
Power: Internal Li-ion battery, 6VDC/3A AC adaptor for charging MPC Fly and iPad2
MPC App works with iPad & iPad 2 (Hardware works with iPad 2 only)

The Akai Fly Homepage

Akai announces new MPC style midi controllers.

Ahead of NAMM this year Akai has decided to announce and show off 2 out of it 3 new MPC style midi controllers.  It should be interesting to see how a company that pretty much invented the all in one workstation sampling groove box concept can go up against the modern day solutions on offer such as Maschine.

Akai MPC Studio
The Akai MPC Studio

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Akai MPC Studio Key Features:
  • Fuses iconic MPC production with the processing power of your computer
  • Compact design is less than 1” thin and fits easily into a laptop bag
  • MPC SOFTWARE for Mac & PC with 64-track sequencing capability
  • 16 backlit genuine MPC pads, legendary MPC workflow & MPC Swing
  • US B-powered with low-profile knobs and brushed aluminum body
  • Large LCD screen allows you to make tracks without having to look at your computer
  • Four touch-sensitive knobs provide enhanced MPC software control

 

Akai Renaissance
The Akai Renaissance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Akai Renaissance Key Features :

  • Fuses legendary MPC production with the processing power of your computer
  • Vintage Mode changes output sound character to MPC3000, MPC60 and more…
  • 16 backlit genuine MPC pads, 16 Q-Link controls, and adjustable backlit LCD screen
  • Classic MPC Note Repeat, MPC Swing and MPC transport controls
  • MPC SOFTWARE for Mac or PC with 64-track sequencing capability
  • Two XLR-1/4” combo inputs and dedicated turntable input
  • Four-channel US B 2.0 audio interface and two-port US B 2.0 hub built in
  • Up to eight pad banks—more than any other MPC ever
  • Two MIDI inputs and four MIDI outputs
  • Stereo 1/4” out, stereo assignable mix 1/4” out & S/PDIF I/O

 

http://www.akaipro.com/mpc