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#1031252 - 12/02/13 11:39 PM Idea's For Good Midi Controller?  
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 918
L. James Tanner Offline
Top 500 Poster
L. James Tanner  Offline
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Joined: May 2013
Posts: 918
What is a good brand and cheap midi controller for my puter. I am an absolute newbie on these and being disabled I can't afford a whole lot, but I don't really want a cheapo either. I guess I want one with good flexibility more than anything.

Last edited by L. James Tanner; 12/02/13 11:41 PM.
#1146282 - 11/19/18 02:22 AM Re: Idea's For Good Midi Controller? [Re: L. James Tanner]  
Joined: Oct 2018
Posts: 8
ryan_bryan Offline
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ryan_bryan  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2018
Posts: 8
Depends on what you want from the controller.

Three questions you should ask yourself:

1. Do you want to just enter MIDI notes or do you want to play entire compositions? In other words, do you want to be EDM-artist-flavor-of-the-month, or play Chopin?

2. Do you care about a lot of controls, i.e. buttons, pads, faders? Most traditional musicians don't need them too much, but if you're creating EDM, hip-hop, etc. you kinda need them

3. What size are you comfortable with? Portable controllers are great but have tiny keys which can make playing complex melodies difficult. Full-size keyboards (49 keys and above) on the other hand take up a lot of desk space

If you want playability and have a budget, you'll do better with a digital piano instead of a plain MIDI controller. The piano will have far better keys. If you'd still go for a MIDI controller, I suggest something with semi-weighted keys. These do a better approximation of acoustic piano keys and don't always cost a bomb.

As for brands, I've never seen anyone regret buying an Akai. Their keys aren't the best but their pad quality is top notch. For keys, I suggest going for a Roland. Their A-500 Pro is a fantastic keyboard. Stay away from M-Audio; their keys have a habit of falling apart after a few heavy jam sessions. Another great but slightly expensive brand is Nektar. Their Panorama P4 is great.

If cheap is your thing and you need something small, go for an Akai MPK Mini. If you'd rather have a full set of keys, pick something from midiPlus or Nektar's GX61

This is a good overview of MIDI keyboards

Also check out this list if you're using a Mac (I know lots of musicians do)

#1150098 - 01/17/19 07:53 AM Re: Idea's For Good Midi Controller? [Re: L. James Tanner]  
Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 225
Cheyenne Offline
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Cheyenne  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 225
Florida U.S.A.
WOW you know your stuff, as someone who was brought up on

old fashioned analogue recording with 8 track maximum I have only

started using Digital gear around Ten years ago

I would love to be able to mix the two, as VOCALS via Digital

never sounds right to me ; But I have managed to get a pretty good

sound via a lot of trial and error , Plus the fact that one can add or re write

a measure or two with out starting the whole song demo again using Digital

as opposed to Analogue Recorders

Thanks for your response to the gents enquiry

Last edited by Cheyenne; 01/17/19 10:33 AM.

One of the most important principles of songwriting is to remember that a good song is a partnership of many different components, all working together to produce a satisfying musical experience.

In that respect, song components are either enhancing or compromising their combined effects.
#1150828 - 02/11/19 12:38 AM Re: Idea's For Good Midi Controller? [Re: L. James Tanner]  
Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 4
dannyrichardson Offline
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dannyrichardson  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 4
There are a few different things to cover here.
1) Do you care about how many keys your controller has?
2) Do you want a bunch of different parameter controls or does that not matter?
3) Weighted keys? Most controllers won't have weighted keys so you would want to get a digital piano if you want that in my opinion.

I would recommend going with the popular Akai MPK 249 or the Arturia Keylab MK2 as it's brand new and getting great reviews. This has only 49 keys, but it's plenty!

Here is a MIDI Controller good breakdown of MIDI controllers that I found really helpful as it covers all sizes.

I also found this to be cool to as it looks like there's now Bluetooth MIDI controller

Hope this helps you!

Last edited by dannyrichardson; 02/11/19 12:49 AM.
#1150829 - 02/11/19 12:51 AM Re: Idea's For Good Midi Controller? [Re: L. James Tanner]  
Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 2
SeanMichaels Offline
Casual Observer
SeanMichaels  Offline
Casual Observer

Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 2
There's lots of options available. I think Akai is a pretty good place to start. I personally use a Yamaha P-45, but this is more of a digital piano and not a MIDI controller, though I use it as one.

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