This is my review column where I'll be reviewing studio and production gear, without the advertising details that you can just read on the manufacturer's website.
I will let you know if your music is sucking because it's the gear or your ear. We all know it's always your ear but hey, it rhymes.
My first piece of gear to review is the new Akai MPK49. I learned beat making on an MPC so when I saw this was available I jumped on it. This was mainly because I never really got tired of hitting the buttons and pads on the tank-like constructed MPC's, but also because it offers "note repeat," along with the original swing. I really don't even use these features that much, which is what I keep telling myself though, because the note repeat and arppegiator don't work right when syncing the midi clock to Logic. Someone on a website said theirs works perfectly, but I don't know. As annoying as it is, it's a very easy workaround to leave them un-synced and just match tempos.
That being said, this is the best keyboard controller key feel I've felt. I used to use Nord keyboards as midi controllers and those are some of the best keys out there. This is a close follower to that feel with a little more resistance, which I love because it feels like a big pillow every time my finger lands. Also, the transport and all the buttons have that big MPC click when you press them in. I love hitting play. I don't really like the pads, but I like keys for drums anyway, so I program them to do something else.
Basically the verdict is that it's not the gear it's your ear. This thing can do everything great. And I can get pissed at how shitty my playing is, throw it out the window to the street, have a friend toss it back up to me, and after a few tries, still make sonic crack with this thing.
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