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Compact USB/MIDI/CV keyboard controller with MPC pads.
MAX25 places revolutionary control at your fingertips with the ability to command anything, from vintage analog synths via its CV/Gate outputs to modern MIDI and USB MIDI devices. With an intuitive layout and included Ableton Live Lite, AkaiConnect, and Ignite music creation software, MAX25 offers instant, powerful creative capabilities. From its 25 semi-weighted keys and 8 real MPC pads, to its groundbreaking LED touch faders and built-in 16-note step sequencer, MAX25 combines cutting-edge Akai Pro technology with classic capability to give you an unprecedented music-making experience.
Cutting-edge LED Touch Faders
MAX25 is one of the most unique controllers ever engineered. Right away you'll notice one of its most distinguishing features: four banks of four backlit LED touch faders, allowing you to assign up to 16 control parameters. You can use MAX25's LED touch faders just like analog faders by simply dragging your finger along their touch strips, or you can perform instant leaps in any MIDI value from zero to maxed out and everything in between—an unprecedented, unmatched controller capability.
Built-in Step Sequencer
Akai Professional’s MAX25 and MAX49 are the only keyboard controllers available that include a built-in step sequencer. MAX25’s touch faders combine with the built-in step sequencer to offer even more innovative performance capabilities. Control four banks of four steps each, creating patterns up to 16 steps. The step sequencer can be assigned to MIDI parameters or the CV/Gate outputs, and the touch faders give you real-time editing control over modulation, filters, key changes, and effects. Create instant arpeggios by swiping your finger horizontally across the faders, and easily activate and deactivate steps using the button beneath each fader.
When you're ready to get down to business, MAX25 delivers essential controller features with excellence. 25 semi-weighted keys with aftertouch are laid out before you, providing professional feel, perfect response and full musical expression. Large, centrally positioned transport controls give you straightforward track navigation, and rubberized pitch and modulation wheels provide for instant creative flourishes. MAX25's expanded arpeggiator includes a Latch button as well as eight different time divisions to create sweeping and endlessly varied melodic cascades.
CV & Gate Outputs
MAX25 comes ready to command any controller hardware or software from any era: USB MIDI, traditional 5-pin DIN MIDI, and Control Voltage and Gate outputs are onboard, allowing you to control everything from today's most advanced music software, to analog modular synths from as far back as the 1960s. Mackie Control and HUI protocols are also built in to give you instant compatibility with many industry standard DAWs.
Iconic MPC Pads
MAX25 is also equipped with four banks of 8 backlit MPC pads, giving you a total of 32 assignable pads, allowing you to integrate legendary Akai Pro production capability into live performances and recording sessions alike. These backlit velocity-sensitive pads come with classic MPC Swing, Note Repeat, Full Level and navigation controls to give you all the tools you need to create music at your highest level.
Ignite music creation software from AIR works seamlessly with MAX25, giving you the fastest way to capture ideas and make music. It’s a refreshingly different approach, a simple and seamless creative partner that empowers your ideas and brings them to life. Say goodbye to the rigid and complicated methods of the past. Say hello to a fresh new way to create.
Ignite includes over 275 instruments, many of which are taken from our renowned instrument collections - including Strike, Structure, and Velvet. All sounds have been optimized to load quickly, and the editing controls are automatically mapped to your MAX25. These extraordinary sounds include keyboards, drums, percussion, basses, guitars, synths, strings, brass, and woodwinds.
MAX25 also comes with Ableton Live Lite Akai Pro Edition software, one of the most popular and powerful performance and production programs worldwide. Ableton Live Lite enables musicians to spontaneously compose, record, remix, improvise and edit musical ideas in a seamless audio/MIDI environment.
Control to the Max
MAX25 also comes with AkaiConnect automatic-mapping software, so you'll be up and running in your favorite DAW and VSTs in seconds. AkaiConnect has been designed to eliminate the guesswork and give you more time creating and less time setting up controls. Instantly assign MAX25's MPC pads, touch faders and buttons to your favorite music software plug-ins by simply clicking on the software element you want to control, then touching the knob, pad, fader or button on MAX25.
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Reviewed by 1 customer
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Comments about Akai Professional MAX25 25-Key MIDI Controller:
I'm glad I held off a bit writing a review for this. It took me a while to get used to it. Not so much because this thing is over-complicated. It's not. It was that I'm not much of a keyboard player and knew almost nothing about MIDI. I really threw myself into learning it, and it was worth it! This thing is awesome! The keys feel very professional - nicely weighted and it supports polyphonic aftertouch. The chassis is great too. The deep red is nice change of pace from the ubiquotous black. The ribbon faders are cool and fun to use. And this is my first time using arpeggiators and sequencers.
As for the size, I needed something very compact. I have a slide-out rackmount shelf so I needed something less than 19 inches. But it's not missing anything for features. I would say they crammed about as much as they could into this thing.
As for the included software, I don't have much use for the Akai Connect software, but the Vyzex is very nice. The Max25 comes with several presets loaded for use with several different DAWs and synths, but you can store over them if you want. I generally prefer using Vyzex to edit my presets, but the LCD screen is not bad to edit on at all. It's not a matter of lousy versus good, it's a matter of nice versus nicer.
It comes with Ableton Lite and Ignite software. I can't speak to either of those because they require Windows 7 and up and I'm still hanging on to XP for as long as I possibly can! (I don't feel like I'm missing out. I'm happy with my DAW.)