Akai MPD24: Finally, Gorgeous, Serious Drum Pads for Computers?

Akai’s MPC hardware was terrific in its day, launching whole genres of music. But today, software like Ableton Live (and FL Studio, and many others that function brilliantly with 4×4 sets of pads) give us the flexibility to make new kinds of music. So, even as the MPC hardware has continued to evolve, many of us want more. Now you just need a hardware controller so you can use these applications musically. Akai’s own offering, the MPD16, got just about everything wrong, with (inexplicably) a lone fader, middling pad quality, and little to differentiate itself from competitors. M-Audio’s Trigger Finger …

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NAMM: New Star Trek Phaser-Shaped Akai MIDI Wind Controller

It looks like an elongated Star Trek phaser, but the Akai EWI4000S is actually a brand-new MIDI wind controller. New digital instruments for wind players (like the Yamaha WX5) are fairly rare; it’s nice to see something fresh. And the Akai has plenty of features that suggest it’s worth a look:

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