It’s got bluetooth connectivity. Top 4 Best MIDI Controller Reviews of 2020 1. Why we love it: it’s the ultimate controller for Ableton Live. The CME Xkey Air is a USB powered MIDI keyboard controller that connects to all your devices via Bluetooth. In order to create music that doesn’t sound too much like it’s been generated by a machine, it’s important to appreciate the features on this best midi keyboard. It’s a great controller at a decent price. It allows you to switch between software instruments right from your controller – even if you’re performing without a DAW. In many ways it is. One of the more appealing features of portable of this 25 key midi controller is the kind of software it comes with. var plc291816 = window.plc291816 || 0; var AdButler = AdButler || {}; = || []; Alesis V Mini. Of course, we don’t need to be involved in just one genre of music to benefit from Ableton Live Lite – the software that comes with this model is suitable for a range of melodies. You can also create complex effects with sidechaining. As many users of modern MIDI keyboard controllers rely heavily on portability, it’s fair that the mobile M-Audio Oxygen 25 MK IV USB is in contention. Why we love it: The beauty of the look and feel. It allows you to chop samples with the improved Simpler device from Ableton. The backlit pads are also pressure and velocity sensitive. Portability: While they might not fit in your backpack as a mini controller would, they are still quite portable.I toured with a 25 key controller and I frequently would place it under a van seat. Software it comes with: Bitwig 8-Track DAW, open-source editor (ARM-based Arduino Due Platform), free sounds file for Apple’s MainStage and Logic, 49 Keys (‘Keywaves’ with Polyphonic Pitch Bend and Aftertouch), Software it comes with: Bitwig 8-Track DAW, Equator (ROLI’s custom-built software synthesizer). Read our review here.. Arturia KeyStep 37 The newest addition to Arturia’s renowned KeyStep range is the aptly named KeyStep 37. The faders are also unique: they’re illuminated touchstrips. s.async = true; Ska music fans serious about recreating some of the more popular beats of this magical era of popular music will be impressed with the features on this model allowing us to mess around with music samples of bygone years. Musicians that tend to be poorly organised at the best of times could overcome this negative aspect of their music making process with the ability to use a marker button to help note every significant part of the songs they are working on. Lots of connection options: it’s ideal for those who want to connect old and new gear. Although fourth in our much-deliberated buying guide list, this heavyweight in the midi keyboard controller division is not to be disregarded. Motorized faders are usually reserved for high end studio equipment. The placement of the pads it very clever: they’re conveniently located on the left beside the keyboard. Designed for Ableton Live. This is your portable all-in-one Ableton music production controller. And as the M-Audio Oxygen 25 MKIV MIDI Controller includes Pro Tools Lite as well as Ableton Lite, musicians that need to tighten their belt are going to be quids in. }()); Shop for midi controller at Best Buy. What makes this MIDI keyboard unique is the software it comes with: Virtual Instrument Player. It has a knobs and pads. Akai LPK25. The pads trigger various clips in Ableton’s Session View. Why we love it: affordable control for Ableton Live. s.type = "text/javascript"; The software included in the ROLI Seaboard Block such as Equator Player, NOISE, BLOCKS Dashboard and the ever popular Ableton Live Lite as well as MaxMSP is another positive aspect. That said, the extra keys and additional features on this master of MIDI controllers is what makes it very good value for money. For a great price you get 61 keys that feel good to play (they’re semi-weighted). Quality presets. document.write('<'+'div id="placement_291816_'+plc291816+'">'); Dance music enthusiasts looking for a way to break into their local DJ – ing market are bound to make waves with the eight velocity-sensitive pads provided by M-Audio for this midi keyboard with pads. Why we love it: it’s one of the most complete MIDI keyboard controllers under 200 USD. It detects the subtle ways in which you press a button. It sends information about what notes you play and how you play them. Why we love it: a great all-in-one Ableton Live MIDI keyboard for a good price. Best suited for: Producers looking for a fully fledged instrument controller and probably the most feature-packed, dynamic MIDI pad controller on the market. XY MIDIpad mini is a miniature touch screen XY MIDI controller for electric guitar guitar. Midi Control is the best midi controller for Windows Phone 8.1 and Windows 10. It responds so well to subtle touch variations that it’s almost like an acoustic instrument. Be sure to combine this with a cool AUX cable from our list. Dedicated Buttons: Octave Up/Down, Arpeggiator, Sustain and Tap Tempo, Other versions: 49 keys, 61 keys, 88 keys, Dedicated buttons: Octave Up/Down, Pitch Bend, Sustain, Modulation, Software or DAW included: Xpand!2 by AIR Music Tech. Why we love it: it’s great for Ableton Live lovers. And with the Akai Professional MPK Mini MKII boasting self-supported operation, it won’t be too long before you have realized your digital music dreams. A quirky unique feature: Breath Controller input. s.src = ''; This controller has as many keys as a real piano. Why we love it: It’s an affordable and ultra-portable MIDI mixer for Ableton Live (or any DAW). It has everything. var n = document.getElementsByTagName("script")[0]; Why we love it: it looks stunning and has cutting-edge touch sensing technology. Many are designed for Ableton Live’s Session View. opt: { place: plc323276++, iOS music makers: this is for you! You can control distortion level, echo, VST plugins, Korg Kaoss Pad devices, DigiTech Whammy pedals, Cubase, Logic or any DAW and even the stage lighting.XY MIDIpad is also equipped with a hold button (with blue LED ring) and a rotary encoder (with push-button), which greatly increase the controller’… Why we love it: Straightforward and easy to use yet still powerful. Keep in mind that keys on mini MIDI controllers are quite small. It’s great for DJs and producers and even better for those who do both. I’ve organized them in categories to help you find what you need quickly. The unique feature of this controller is the quantity of assignable buttons: 36. It comes with 49 full-size velocity … var s = document.createElement("script"); Mackie HUI integration for use with Cubase, Logic and Pro Tools. Great for iPad. Good as an iOS MIDI keyboard controller. Ableton users will need to download a Live Remote Script file. Choosing the right one is the first step towards becoming a better producer. (function () { You won’t have to reach over the keyboard awkwardly when performing. It comes with a software that lets you edit button functions for any DAW. Cool feature: effects are step-sequenced. Although the keys are slightly smaller than those on regular MIDI keyboard controllers, once you’ve mastered this aspect – you can focus on organizing your music ideas. Fortunately for music producers not all that competent at playing the piano or other keyboards, this one of the best midi keyboard controller around at the moment provides a solution. It’s great for playing live gigs in low light. A MIDI keyboard controller is a physical interface that allows you to control sounds or functions from devices that work with MIDI. This one is all about control, controlling as much as possible without leaving the keyboard. }); Why we love it: it’s a cleverly designed all-in-one MIDI keyboard. 48 Assignable Buttons (7 Assignable Color Modes). With this MIDI keyboard Behringer brings you motorized faders at an accessible price. Ok this isn’t cheap. It’s got Smart Sensing keys that detects various kinds of human gestures. However, not only is this contender in our list of top MIDI controllers far from being science fiction but also a game changer for musicians. And although these annotation experts for artists look like any kind of keyboard used in real time, they actually serve a much broader function. H… It allows you to save presets. It comes with a bundle of iOS and computer software (Mac/PC). Why we love it: it’s a great mixer with lots of creative control over your DAW and other hardware. = || []; And although at number eight in our listing, skills of top DJs could be achieved with the Novation Launchkey. The workflow of the Launchkey is designed specifically for Ableton Live (but it will map with any major DAW). It also comes with well-built piano pedals to plug into your keyboard. But as most of us will agree with the notion that practice makes perfect, users of this marvel in MIDI keyboard technology should be patient when attempting to realise their music making goals. MIDI is a wide ranging protocol: it can be used for triggering (playing) notes on a keyboard workstation, turning functions on and off within a computer program, changing presets on … The Studiologic MP-117 (also sold as the Fatar MP-117) is a MIDI controller with the build quality, heft, and price tag of a legit keyboard.. But if you think that it’s only the more obvious array of features on this best midi keyboard controller that it’s got to offer, then think again. It can also be connected to iOS devices (separate connection kit required). if (!window.AdButler){(function(){var s = document.createElement("script"); s.async = true; s.type = "text/javascript";s.src = '';var n = document.getElementsByTagName("script")[0]; n.parentNode.insertBefore(s, n);}());} This is a very simple, easy and functional MIDI controller. It has a lot of controls. M-Audio Keystation Mini 32. It comes with great sounds: 5000 Analog Lab soft synth presets from Arturia’s Modular V, Arp 2600V, Jupiter 8V and others. } Attack Magazine says it’s “one of the best MIDI controllers on the market.” The pads are backlit and have aftertouch. In a nutshell, a smooth-running MIDI keyboard controller is the way forward for musicians aiming to make songs that sound like music should do. If you believe that a bad craftsmen shouldn’t blame their tools for a poor job, then you’re probably one step closer to realising why top music producers and performers purchase this equipment to help create perfect tunes. It’s currently #1 Best Seller in Computer Recording Equipment on Amazon. This controller has both semi-weighted keys and functions from iconic Akai MPCs (including Note Repeat and MPC Swing). Great the beatmakers! iOS compatible. Lots of control for its compact size. The MiniLab looks awesome. If you’re amazed at what the likes of Moby or Fatboy Slim have been able to achieve at their live gigs or music they have put together in the studio, getting your hands on one of these beasts should definitely be on your bucket list. When taking the time to appreciate why we rate this one of the best midi controller options, you’ll be happy to see that it’s earned its merit for a number of reasons. All of a sudden you can make a groovier beat, mix more easily and tweak with precision. Native Instruments’ Maschine MK3 is without a doubt one of the most inspiring pieces of audio hardware I’ve used. The keys on this one are full size and semi-weighted – they feel great. It also allows you to play VSTs like no other. You can also split your keyboard into zones and play various sounds. You can “tune” each row like you would with strings on a guitar. Why we love it: Livid makes amazingly well built controllers. Unique feature: this controller is also a 64-step polyphonic MIDI sequencer. Why we love it: it’s very playable, well-made and great for live gigs. A piano melody here, a beat there… Having both the physical touch of a keyboard and the editing freedom of MIDI is a blessing in music production. It allows you to customize your setup from the keyboard – no editing software required. And if you really don’t have the time or the inclination to mess around with installing or adding software to get yourself up and running, you’ll appreciate the already included Ableton Live Lite Alesis Edition. You can use it as a standalone MPC and as DAW controller. It’s designed to have plug-and-play integration with most major DAWs, except Ableton Live. It also has a built in sequencer. This selection is for digital pianos with MIDI. The backlit pads are pressure and velocity sensitive. Just keep in mind, if a MIDI controller comes with a DAW package, it will likely work best with that DAW and may present issues when using a different DAW. Software or DAW included: Xpand!2 and Ableton Live Lite, Dedicated Buttons: Octave Up/Down, Shift and more, DAW Integration: all, connects to iOS (separate kit required), Dedicated Buttons: Octave Up/Down, Play, Pause and more, Software or DAW included: Ableton Live Lite, Hybrid 3 by AIR Music Tech, SONiVOX Twist, and Toolroom artist launch packs, Other versions: 25 keys, 61 keys, 88 keys, DAW Integration: all major DAWs, optimized for Ableton Live, Dedicated buttons: Octave Up/Down, Arpeggiator, Scale Guide and more, Software or DAW included included: code for KORG Software Bundle, Dedicated Buttons: Octave Up/Down, Transpose, Play, Stop, Record and more, Software or DAW included: Studio One Artist. handler: function (opt) { If you’re not into the Push (or don’t want to spend that much), this is for you. You can also find used MIDI controllers for a great price. It was designed by Ableton themselves. It’s got complete hands-on control of VSTs and DAWs. She DJs and produces under the name softcoresoft. Price: $70 USD. Why we love it: a great MIDI keyboard controller with the added Akai MPC workflow. Notes in a given scale light up to guide you when you play. if (!window.AdButler) { I thought I’d please the piano players out there. This makes songwriting infinitely more intuitive and quick. Indeed, the variation of the notes and chords to make the music sound more natural is just one of the things that sets this keyboard controller apart from its competitors. Indeed, using this top model should help musicians develop as professional music producers. And as you’ll be able to play a whole spectrum of sounds from instruments, the sky really is the limit with this compact melody maker. The soft surface of this leader in the more simplified versions of midi controller allows users to experience a more subtle way of putting together tracks they have been working on of late. Looking for the best 25 key MIDI controller? It’s got a lot of power for something so thin. If you like the Alesis V series: this is the compact version. The MASCHINE workflow combines the fun of samplers with the power of software and VSTs. Why we love it: it makes songwriting much easier with the Touch Scale and Chord Scale functions. Great for recording, mixing or performing live. It’s designed for Ableton Live – if you don’t already have it you get a light version. These MIDI keyboard have more keys – 61 or 88 – and a better feel. Or for those who like to play with two hands. Perfect for making music while traveling or if you have limited studio space. You can load VSTs and use them with your samples. Find more great products like this by checking out our guide to the best decibel meters. It comes with high quality effects that you can even sidechain. If you are a professional music producer then this is the best midi keyboard controller for you. Find low everyday prices and buy online for delivery or in-store pick-up It gives you an LED guide for playing the right keys in a selected scale. It’s the best MIDI keyboard for iPad. Are you choosing your first MIDI keyboard controller? XY MIDIpad mini, just like the full-size XY MIDIpad, allows you to control any MIDI parameters with the touch of your finger. Music composers that are more likely to search for a public space to get into some tune making won’t want to overlook this portable model. Modulate a note’s pitch, timbre, velocity and loudness with the same finger. DAW Integration: most major ones. There’s a Kaoss-inspired X-Y Pad – awesome for tweaking effects. MIDI In/Out (with an included TRS to MIDI breakout cable), Software Included: Ableton Live Lite and 1GB of Loopmasters samples. This controller can be powered with a USB cable only! It’s both an MPC style sampler and a DAW controller. } Works with iPad (requires a separate connection kit), Dedicated Buttons: Octave Up/Down, Pitch Bend, Modulation, Sustain and more, Software or DAW included included: Ignite, DAW integration: all, ‘Hypercontrol’ automatic-mapping technology, 32 keys (Synth Action Slimkeys with Aftertouch), Dedicated knobs:  Seq/Arp Mode, Time Div, Rate, Dedicated buttons: Rec, Play, Stop, Tap, Octave Up/Down, Sustain, Dedicated Buttons: Octave Up/Down, Set, Program Up/Down, Software or DAW included included: IK’s SampleTank iOS app, SampleTank 2 L for Mac/PC, 25 keys (with Smart Sensor and aftertouch), Dedicated Buttons: Octave Up/Down, Record, Play, Bend and more, Software or DAW included: QuNexus Editor, QuNexus OSC Bridge, QuNexus Ableton Live Sets (all downloadable online), Dedicated Buttons for Play, Stop, Octave Up/Down & more, Software or DAW included:  KORG KONTROL Editor, Korg Legacy Collection, Dedicated Buttons: Octave Up/Down, Record, Play and more. Comes with the MIDI Control Center software which lets you create custom layouts. It’s very easy to browse through the tag-based preset system. Why we love it: great price that includes a mixer section and banks of settings. This controller is basically the Ableton Session View in physical form. It can be powered either through USB or a power supply (sold separately). This isn’t primarily a MIDI controller but I had to include it. Pretty cool for a paper-thin keyboard. Melody makers constantly on the go in their quest to make out-of-this-world music will be pleased with the simple and compact design of this viable contender in our list. This section is for the pros and those of you who want something extraordinary. It’s a DAW in a box. It’s well priced for a full-sized 49 keys. = || []; Control freaks will be in awe of the DAW software provided by Korg on this wonderfully-compacted MIDI controller. Why we love it: it lets you connect your keyboard with bluetooth. In the compact corner, because of the sheer number of features crammed into such a light, small footprint, our recommendation right now is the Novation Launchkey Mini Mk3 . Getting the best MIDI keyboard for your needs is a vital tool for success. ‘Touch Scale’ helps you generate melodies using the touch pad. Indeed, easily fitting in this low-profile midi keyboard among a computer setup is another strong selling point for this model. It can allow for creative uses of vibrato and volumes variations. It also has knobs and pads. It also has a built-in 32-step sequencer, MIDI in/out and MPC-style pads. domain: '' s.src = ''; Of course, It’s important for all members of a band to talk to each other. Indeed, adding a bit of beat to your top tunes will be easy to achieve with the quick-response beat pads on this equipment. The eight channels incorporated into this impressive design come with a fader, knob and three switches – this helps the user to create a more natural vibe to the tunes they put together. At only 1.98 pounds and a mere 9.4 inches in length, stuffing this small and compact MIDI controller into your bag before heading off to a show will become a matter of course. A definite favourite. DAW Integration: does not map automatically, must be manually mapped. ‘Chord Scale’ automatically triggers chords according to the key and scale you choose. Or even 32 and 37 keys? Unique feature: the ‘roll’ button for creative drum pattern programming. DAW Integration: Pre-mapped DAW Configurations for Bitwig Studio, Cubase, Digital Performer, Garageband, Logic Pro, Nuendo, Reason, SONAR, Studio One, FL Studio, and Reaper. It’s very portable and comes with a bunch of software bundles. opt: { Akai Professional MPK MIDI Keyboard Controller, Roland Lightweight, Weighted-Action Keyboard. This is what Novation’s flagship controller and it’s aimed at pros. domain: '' Controllers of this range are complete and have semi-weighted keys for a better feel when playing. Ableton Live is more fun and feisty when you add a hardware controller, turning the software into more of an instrument. The sound samples are high quality and the creative control you get with this controller is endless. The aim is, of course, to increase your workflow and in music production that’s important. Why we love it: it went just a little further than others giving you 32 instead of 25 keys. Notwithstanding the extra weight in this popular MIDI keyboard for professional and novice musicians alike, this model is still pretty portable. LANDR is an instant online music mastering tool. It’s the de facto controller for Live. This is an easy plug-and-play mini MIDI keyboard. Why we love it: it’s very complete. Many new controller keyboards have joysticks - MAudio Ozonic, That Korg colorfull board, etc.. The thing is, there are hundreds of MIDI controllers on the market these days. It has a sequencer, sampler and high-quality effects. }, Why we love it: This one has got all of the latest MIDI controller features for 150 USD: bluetooth connectivity, scale guide, X-Y pad and more. A MIDI keyboard controller is an essential piece of music gear in today’s home studio. It’s an upgraded version of the MASCHINE with better visual feedback. It comes with a sound library with more than 9GB of sounds – including all of the classic MPC3000 ones. Like the Alesis V series, the pads are conveniently located on the left beside the keyboard. It can connect wirelessly with Bluetooth. As many users of modern MIDI keyboard controllers rely heavily on portability, it’s fair that the mobile M-Audio Oxygen 25 MK IV USB is in contention. The best MIDI controllers: Nektar Panorama P4, Nektar Impact L49+, Akai Professional MPK Mini, Ableton Push 2, Akai Professional MPD226. The Code 49 has an X-Y pad for precise control over effects. If you don’t need any extra features (pads and faders) these are for you. Livid Basse II is made and assembled in Texas. Software or DAW included: Ableton Live Lite, AIR Music Tech Xpand!2. Software or DAW included included: Ableton Live Lite, Novation Bass Station and V-Station virtual instruments and 1 GB of Loopmasters samples. Our blog is a place for inspired musicians to read up on music & culture, and advice on production& mastering. It instantly syncs your DAW’s settings with the controls on the MIDImix. Your all-in-one groovebox for beatmaking, remixing and more. The Komplete Kontrol S88 MKII features 88 velocity-sensitive, hammer-weighted, and full-sized keys on a Fatar keybed that truly feel like a real piano. Moreover, its battery-powered feature allows busy musicians to set up without much delay. This as a great way to play VST synths while using your mouse to tweak knobs. The 25 synth-action keys with velocity sensitivity, eight trigger pads and eight knobs easily manipulated to create great sounds makes this a great choice. Whether you're a musician always on the go or just tight on space, there are plenty of reasons to pick up a portable MIDI controller. It can be used as a standalone production station or with a DAW. With its chunky and wide backlit pads, it shouldn’t be too difficult for musicians to create the sounds they are after. With its 24 keywave feature and two octave playing surface, music makers who love the freedom of doing their stuff wherever they want to have found the perfect solution with this Seaboard. Why we love it: simple and no fuss. One of the biggest ways you can still get a great sound with a portable size is with a 49-Key Midi Controller. Why we love it: an excellent choice for playing live. 1 The best MIDI keyboard for Ableton them are listed below. We’re talking cutting edge technology and top quality. Software or DAW included: Presonus Studio One Artist, Dedicated Buttons: Octave Up/Down, Play, Stop, and more, Other versions: 32 keys, 61 keys, 88 keys, Software or DAW included: Ableton Live Lite, AIR Music Tech Xpand!2, Comes with Grand Piano Pedals (Damper, Sostenuto and Soft). Great built quality. if (!window.AdButler) { (function () { And the bulky no-nonsense design of Akai Professional MPD218 controller provides musicians with assurance that they’re not going to damage it with over-enthused use. Maybe not, but the MicroKEY-2 Air is a little step in that direction. You can power it with only USB, no power supply needed. It has a rugged aluminum body and it looks awesome. This means that you can use it to play or sequence vintage analog synths. n.parentNode.insertBefore(s, n); It’s definitely a favourite. There are DJ-style cue buttons on each channel – so you can listen to it before you bring it up. The KeyLab Essential 61 is one of the slickest-looking MIDI keyboard controllers on our list. Getting to your next gig or showing up at a pal’s place to show them what you can do with this guy won’t be a daunting task at all – this model is really easy to carry around. Also great for DJs with its seamless integration to Native Instrument’s Traktor DJ software. It’s compact and inexpensive too! Many producers say it: going from clicking on a screen in your DAW to tweaking real knobs changes your creative process. Lounge Lizard Session, Propellerhead Reason Limited, Discount on Ableton Live. The Intuitive eight-track pattern sequencer with unhindered recording facilitates a more rapid development in the songs you’re working on. The 5D Touch technology that it comes with is another fantastic feature of the ROLI Seaboard Block. But I need an XY type controller that will send a different MIDI CC# for each direction. This is a simple but powerful MIDI controller that’s good for beginners and travellers.