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MF MD HG01 Electric Guitar Month 06-19-18

Studiologic VMK-188 Plus 88-Key Master Controller

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Product 700737
Product Price $0.00
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The Studiologic VMK-188 Plus is a master controller keyboard that features 88 keys with graded hammer action. Even the most discriminating classical ...Click To Read More About This Product

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Great piano feel and ultimate control over your MIDI software and modules.

The Studiologic VMK-188 Plus is a master controller keyboard that features 88 keys with graded hammer action. Even the most discriminating classical pianist would be happy to play the VMK-188 Plus. This Studiologic MIDI controller has a fully featured USB connection including bus power in addition to two MIDI outs. A large LCD display helps you keep track of your settings and an array of pitch bend, modulation, sliders will give you control over every keyboard function imaginable.

  • 88 full-size keys
  • Fatar Grand Touch Graded Hammer Action
  • 4 programmable pedal inputs
  • USB w/bus power
  • 2 MIDI outputs
  • Velocity sensitive w/aftertouch
  • LCD display
  • Pitch bend and modulation joystick
  • 30 user-programmable presets
  • 8x2 programmable knobs
  • 9x4 programmable sliders
  • 8x2 programmable buttons
  • 5 button sequencer transport control
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
StudiologicVMK-188 Plus 88-Key Master Controller

(based on 6 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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Reviewed by 6 customers

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(14 of 15 customers found this review helpful)


Decent keyboard in an AWFUL controller

By Danny Mulford

from Granada Hills, CA

Comments about Studiologic VMK-188 Plus 88-Key Master Controller:

As a disclaimer, I went through TWO Studiologic VMK-188 Plus keyboards, thinking the first one was a bad unit, and both of them functioned identically. In a sentence, you might as well just get a decent digital piano: the keys are the only feature that actually works. The pitch-bend and modulation stick is, I assume, included for looks only -- first of all, half the time the spring doesn't even pull it back to neutral position, so if you're bending downward, and you let go of the bend, the note will hang slightly flat. And the pitch bend and modulation stick sends MIDI updates in absurdly large increments, so unless you're doing really quick little flicks of the joystick, you hear an obnoxious stair-stepping effect.The knobs and sliders send consecutive MIDI CC values, but sometimes they'll stop at 126 instead of 127, or conversely, they'll bottom out at 1 instead of 0.My second keyboard even started sending a bunch of nonexistent MIDI sustain pedal "up" signals.

(8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)


Disappointing Controller

By tryst

from Toronto, ON

About Me Professional Musician


  • Easy To Use
  • Feel
  • Key Fall


  • Doesn't Last
  • Durability

Best Uses

  • Stage Gigs
  • Studio Production

Comments about Studiologic VMK-188 Plus 88-Key Master Controller:

I fell in love with the idea of owning this unit more than actually owning it. I originally purchased it in 2007, and since then, the following thing have failed:

- pitch/mod wheel spring no longer springs back properly to neutral position after use
- 5 keys make very audible spring sqeaks
- the onboard channel management firmware no long operates and screen remains blank
- the velocity gradient is not consistent throughout all keys, which can be very noticeable when using certain sample libraries

It's important to understand that all these occurred AFTER I had already replaced the unit once, which makes me question the general craftsmanship of the VMK-188 plus. Thankfully none of these issues actually prevented me using the keyboard 5 years later, though it certainly makes me regret my choice.

The feel of the and drop of the weighed keys is quite nice, and was the major factor in choosing this keyboard. However, this feel doesn't transfer as expected when triggering samples. The controller aspect of this unit is pretty uninspiring in my opinion - very generic knobs and sliders.

This unit is deceptive and to be avoided in my opinion. Perhaps the Numa as better construction.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)



By Anonymous

from Undisclosed

Comments about Studiologic VMK-188 Plus 88-Key Master Controller:

I'd spent almost a year trying to hunt down the right midi controller for me. I'd initially been drawn to M-audio, Yamaha, Novation, Kurzweil and other brands. I had seen Fatar's Studio Logic series and ignored them because of their logo which looked a bit cheesy when compared with the other brands. Eventually I was desperate to find what I was looking for so I went and checked out every brand one last time before I made my decision. I realized from researching and comparing specs and other user reviews on forums and retail stores that the Studio Logic series, in particular the VMK 188 Master Controller, may very well be the midi controller for me. I wasn't able to try the controller before I bought it (I live in Canada and there is a lack of availability for midi controllers in my area) but I decided to order it and planned on returning it if it wasn't as good as it was supposed to be. I got it in about a week, and frankly, it was amazingAs far as it feeling like an authentic grand piano, the action on this thing is as good, if not better than any Kurzweil or Yamaha I've tried that's in the same price range. My friends have a Roland RD-700GX and frankly I find the action on the VMK-188 to be slightly superior.Fatar's GHA (graded hammer action) makes a fair difference in the action as well.The 8 programmable knobs, sliders and buttons work nicely and the ability to customize 30 different midi presets can be very useful.As far as the quality goes, the keyboards shell is made of metal. I haven't yet taken it to a gig yet, but it certainly feels like it can take somewhat of a beating. The keys, knobs, sliders, buttons and mod/pitch joystick are decent, but not the best of the best. That being said, they function quite nicely.This company does not advertise themselves very well in North America from what I can tell, or at least not in Canada. You have to search specifically to even find.I think also the value for this product is quite good, even considering the import charge I had to fork out for shipment of it Canada. You can pay allot more for a Kurzweil product that, in my opinion, doesn't feel as good as the SL VMK188 does. You can pay $3000 - $4000 for a digital stage piano that feels as nice, but has less buttons and has all the samples that you probably already have in your computer if you're looking for a midi controller specifically.Overall, this controller is definitely worth taking a look at If you want a keyboard with lots of versatility and that has amazing action and midi control options.One other note: don't judge the quality of a music product from their logo... Studio Logic doesn't win you over with it's choice logo design, they win you over with their amazing products.

(2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)


Happy so far

By Fussy....

from Canada

Comments about Studiologic VMK-188 Plus 88-Key Master Controller:

From all the keyboards I have owned before (9) this is my fifth keyboard-controller. (previously - Studiologic, CME-UF8, M-Audio.)Regarding the ?touch?/weight and the action of the keys - (and this is exactly what I was looking for) - this is most definitely the best keyboard-controller so far. Because its velocity sensors are marvelously balanced (positioned?), this keyboard works exceptionally well with sounds of non-fixed velocity (e.g. strings or piano); however, the keyboard doesn?t seems ?heavy? after switching sounds into instrument of fixed velocity (e.g. organ). Because of the keys? ?touch?/weight I would recommend this keyboard to all students learning to play piano, who cannot afford a real piano (upright or a ?grand?). As for the controls - I don?t have too much of experience in this matter and I?m finding them somewhat confusing. The user manual is a very basic one and doesn?t help much, e.g. I still haven?t found out if I can split the keyboard. If anybody knows how to do it - please let me know....As for the quality - this is yet to be seen. So far, after two month, I?m very happy. I?m using this keyboard at work (live performances - solo and with a band, including production shows) and at home (recording and playing). Sound modules: Kurzweil Micro Ensemble (GREAT pianos!) and Roland VK-8M.Please forgive me my English; I?m doing my best but English is not my first language....- Eugene(pianist/organist; 40 years in music -[classical and all ?other kinds/styles?]- professionally)

(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


The best feel. Period.

By lostinthesauce

from santa barbara

Comments about Studiologic VMK-188 Plus 88-Key Master Controller:

If you are sick of all the cheap chinese actions this is the answer. It feels great. I got it because I read the keyboard mag review and they were right, "best finger to music connection". I wish you could upload presets by usb, and I wish the velocity curve was adjustable, but it was easy to get the transport working with DP and I couldn't live without the feel.


Turned out great!

By LeRoi Hammond

from Denver, Colorado

About Me Professional Musician


  • Easy To Use
  • Functional
  • Good Quality


  • heavy

Best Uses

  • Backup
  • Concerts
  • Practicing

Comments about Studiologic VMK-188 Plus 88-Key Master Controller:

Bought this a couple years ago; the first one arrived with glitches such as faders jumping values and encoders jumping around as well. When the replacement keyboard arrived (under warranty) it performed flawlessly and has continued to work flawlessly for a couple of years. This is a keyboard that is gigged at least once a month and used for home studio recording and practice. I use it in conjunction with Apple's Logic recording program and Main Stage for live performance, which allows me to run guitar, vocals, a trumpet mike, and even a guest guitarist through the keyboard encoders to add effects and control other parameters. I can split the keyboard into as many as I need for different patches on a song through Main Stage. It is a one set-up for all occasions and has really helped me tremendously. And the piano feel is great, although I also use it as a synth and organ (the 9 faders correspond to the B-3 drawbars). I am very satisfied, but caution you to get the extended warranty as others seem to have had quality control issues as I initially did.

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