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Electronic Musical Instruments OT : GAF Can Dance If We Want To

TrainedRage

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I stared out with an Allen and Heath Xone: DX


I used this to mix tracks from my iTunes library and preform at parties and dances. It uses Serato Itch as software. The only software I use. Its very easy to use and has a built in FX controller. It can play and mix 4 tracks and once. Its essentially a lazy/modern version of using some turntables and mixer with a FX panel.


Then I got an Arturia Microbrute Synth


It's portable and small but packs one hell of a punch. You can use the MOD Matrix to mess with any of the sounds. Very fun for sequences and leads.


Finally, not being able to acquire an original Roland 808 I got the modern TR-8, wich is essentially an old 808 and 707 combined with some added inputs etc. QOL improvements.

I use this for bass lines or back tracks. There is so much you can do with this thing its amazing.


Im still learning a lot about how all these work. I have done a few parties and some dances. Preformed at some open club nights. But I would consider myself a bedroom DJ. Its mostly for me to do as a hobby or something to do other than videogames.

Here are three videos showcasing the sounds of each....


 
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Flintty

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Nice thread. I’ve had my eye on an Electribe 2 for a year but nervous about pulling the trigger - I have no musical background other than Dance Ejay in the 90s/00s and beginner guitar.
 

J-Roderton

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Nice thread. I’ve had my eye on an Electribe 2 for a year but nervous about pulling the trigger - I have no musical background other than Dance Ejay in the 90s/00s and beginner guitar.
I have the digital electribe on iPad. Really fun to mess around with. Gorillaz really got me interested in those things.
 

嫩翼

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Pretty much why I'm still single. She's a beaut :crying:

Also, p much all of the arturia VSTs,
 

Flintty

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I have the digital electribe on iPad. Really fun to mess around with. Gorillaz really got me interested in those things.
I didn’t know there was an app!

I saw a demo station at my local music shop last year and it was playing some awesome video game-ish music - it blew me away. Seems there would be a lot to learn to master it.
 

Dark Star

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Gets the job done. I do mostly trap beats.


I've been playing guitar, both electric and acoustic, for many years, along with acoustic drums. In terms of recording gear it's Peavy and Vox amps, Samon co1u mic, And daws mostly used are FL studio and audacity.
 
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TFGB

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I started on an Atari Mega 4 running Cubase when I was about 17 and had a bedroom studio back in the very early 90s but sold all my kit due to moving away.

My first synth was a Casio CZ-101 then I moved onto a Korg M1 and Akai S950.

I bought and sold loads of kit in the 90s but my faves were:

Emu E4 (for the Z-Plane filters)
Emu SP-1200 drum sampler
Emu Morpheus/Proteus/Orbit/Planet Phatt modules
Roland JD-800 & Juno 106
Roland JV-1080 module
Yamaha DX7
Yamaha AN1x
Yamaha A3000
Nord Lead
Novation Bass Station
Korg Wavestation
Korg Trinity and Prophecy
Outboard/FX by Alesis, TC Electronics, Lexicon etc.

I look at how things were back then, mastering onto a Sony DAT, and how things are now and the mind boggles.

I did purchase a Roland PCR-500 controller keyboard a few years back (which I still have) to muck about on Ableton with but I’ve only used it a few times. I keep saying to myself I should start again but something else always crops up. :/
 
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dan76

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I used to have a Yamaha SK20, but had to sell it (to one of The Specials - there's footage of them playing it at Glastonbury). It was a forced sale.

I'm obsessed with early string synthesizers. I've lost count of how many emulation / plugins I have. I almost bought a Solina years ago in Seattle but chickened out with the thought of getting it back to the UK. I'd love to collect these old beasts but they're too expensive now.
 

#Phonepunk#

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got my start with a Moog-brand Etherwave theremin. mine has his signature on the top. i used to play it in a ghost punk band.


currently we use a lot of the awesome OP-1 by Teenage Engineering. this isn't personally mine but my band has one and we use it all the time. last night we used it on an anti-Christmas song.
 

Ixion

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I started getting into electronic music production at the beginning of this year, and I just use MIDI draw in Ableton Live. I have an issue with my hands/wrists where I lose feeling/strength (and get wrist pain) if I tax them too much, so I can't play a keyboard.

I know there are some synths like the KORG VOLCA Keys that have touch-based keys, which I can probably handle. So maybe I'll get something like that down the line. If anyone knows of any other good touch-based keyboards/synths, please share. Especially a MIDI keyboard.
 
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lil puff

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I just upgraded my Arturia Collection to 6.

It is overwhelming.

Notables are the Buchla, the new Jupiter 8 and the Fairlight CMI which sounds almost like a Melotron.

At this point, songs write themselves with these instruments.

I still use this old VST synth called Crystal, which is free, but it is crazy in the modulation section. Gladiator 3 gets used. And drums are always Battery 4.

I'd buy an analogue synth, but ironically I can't physically play an instrument. I only have the sounds in my head and need to programme them.

Most of my effects run off of the stupidly expensive UAD Apollo. However, I believe they are the best analog emulations out there.

However, some more affordable plugins come from guys like Klanghelm and Sonimus. Such as Satson, MJUC, and SDRR.

My music is as about as choppy and floaty as my writing.
 

EviLore

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Great thread TrainedRage TrainedRage , looking forward to contributing an obnoxious amount.

I started getting into electronic music production at the beginning of this year, and I just use MIDI draw in Ableton Live. I have an issue with my hands/wrists where I lose feeling/strength (and get wrist pain) if I tax them too much, so I can't play a keyboard.

I know there are some synths like the KORG VOLCA Keys that have touch-based keys, which I can probably handle. So maybe I'll get something like that down the line. If anyone knows of any other good touch-based keyboards/synths, please share. Especially a MIDI keyboard.
There are quite a few different options available to bridge somewhere in the middle between midi drawing in a DAW and playing full keyboard/piano with less strain on your carpal tunnels. I'm a gear whore so I've tried a bunch of stuff. Let's see if we can sort you out.

One keyboard I've found to be low strain, cheap, and versatile is the Korg Nanokey 2:


It's $50. The keys are a little squishy and velocity sensitive. You can use a gentle touch and still get an expressive piano-like output. Sees a lot of pro use, too. For example, Lena Raine used it for composing the Celeste soundtrack.
 

嫩翼

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I just upgraded my Arturia Collection to 6.

It is overwhelming.

Notables are the Buchla, the new Jupiter 8 and the Fairlight CMI which sounds almost like a Melotron.

At this point, songs write themselves with these instruments.
Dude don't get me started with Jupiter 8... first time I used that and Wurly I think I died inside. I'm jealous!
 

Ixion

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There are quite a few different options available to bridge somewhere in the middle between midi drawing in a DAW and playing full keyboard/piano with less strain on your carpal tunnels. I'm a gear whore so I've tried a bunch of stuff. Let's see if we can sort you out.

One keyboard I've found to be low strain, cheap, and versatile is the Korg Nanokey 2:


It's $50. The keys are a little squishy and velocity sensitive. You can use a gentle touch and still get an expressive piano-like output. Sees a lot of pro use, too. For example, Lena Raine used it for composing the Celeste soundtrack.
Nice. Thanks man. I'll definitely look into this more. Seems pretty damn close to what I would need!

Right now I'm still in the middle of learning Ableton Live and learning music theory, and then my plan is to start looking into physical gear a bit down the line. The nanokey seems like a great option once I get there.
 
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plasmasd

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I have over 50 hardware synths. Its hard to even count them at this point. Place looks like JunkieXL's house now.

Classiest: Jupiter 8
Best Sounding: Tie between Sequential Rev2 Prophet 5 and ARP Quadra
Craziest sound: MemoryMoog
Favorite Sequencer: Yamaha CS70m
Best Digital: Prophet VS
Craziest Mono: Yamaha CS-30

Worst things about hardware is that the more you get the more they sound different. All the software is good too, but again, different.
 

EviLore

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Im looking to buy a pad. Any advice?
What are you looking to accomplish specifically? Those demos are awesome of course, but the Collidoscope isn't for sale, and the Reactable Live S6 appears to have a MSRP of 6700 Euros.

The Roli Seaboard is the least flash out of those but the only semi-practical purchase. I've done some research on it previously. The Rise 49 is cool but way expensive, and the only Block I'd consider is the Seaboard Block, which is only a 24 key and comes with limited software bundled. Most hands-on impressions of the Blocks system seem to have issues with quality control, the rigid ecosystem you're thrust into, and the uselessness of the Lightpad compared to just using your phone or iPad as a touch surface on the app equivalent.

What do you have in terms of midi controllers so far TrainedRage TrainedRage ?
 

TrainedRage

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What are you looking to accomplish specifically? Those demos are awesome of course, but the Collidoscope isn't for sale, and the Reactable Live S6 appears to have a MSRP of 6700 Euros.

The Roli Seaboard is the least flash out of those but the only semi-practical purchase. I've done some research on it previously. The Rise 49 is cool but way expensive, and the only Block I'd consider is the Seaboard Block, which is only a 24 key and comes with limited software bundled. Most hands-on impressions of the Blocks system seem to have issues with quality control, the rigid ecosystem you're thrust into, and the uselessness of the Lightpad compared to just using your phone or iPad as a touch surface on the app equivalent.

What do you have in terms of midi controllers so far TrainedRage TrainedRage ?
Just the XoneDX, are Launch Pads still popular? Yeah those videos were just for fun. I was going to use it for drum loops and sample using etc.
 

EviLore

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Just the XoneDX, are Launch Pads still popular? Yeah those videos were just for fun. I was going to use it for drum loops and sample using etc.
Got it. Yeah, launchpads are still popular. Your gear is very live and DAW-less oriented though. There are a lot of good options for direct integration with DAWs, but if you're not looking in that route, have you considered the Novation Circuit?

They've updated the firmware and software a bunch of times since release. It started out as a straightforward groovebox, but it's become very flexible, with the ability to upload your own samples to it and modify the two synth engines to your liking. Great thing is that it's battery powered and standalone, but works well connected to other gear for live jamming too. In its current form it's a powerful sequencer, drum machine/sampler, synth, and pad midi controller. Might be up your alley.




Here's a vid showing off the Circuit and Circuit Mono Station in a live set:

 

TrainedRage

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Got it. Yeah, launchpads are still popular. Your gear is very live and DAW-less oriented though. There are a lot of good options for direct integration with DAWs, but if you're not looking in that route, have you considered the Novation Circuit?

They've updated the firmware and software a bunch of times since release. It started out as a straightforward groovebox, but it's become very flexible, with the ability to upload your own samples to it and modify the two synth engines to your liking. Great thing is that it's battery powered and standalone, but works well connected to other gear for live jamming too. In its current form it's a powerful sequencer, drum machine/sampler, synth, and pad midi controller. Might be up your alley.




Here's a vid showing off the Circuit and Circuit Mono Station in a live set:

I have heard of Novation, just not the Circuit. I will have to check out those videos and see if I can get a hold of one at the store I frequent. It sounds like what im looking for. Thanks! (y)
 

EviLore

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I have over 50 hardware synths. Its hard to even count them at this point. Place looks like JunkieXL's house now.
Hallowed be thy GAS :messenger_fire:


Korg minilogue xd leaked, btw. Looks pretty sweet.




 

haxan7

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So I recently started looking into buying a decent entry level synth. I had a few keyboards/digital pianos as a teenager (I'm 34) and learned how to play some songs/read basic music. But I never pursued it past like age 17 (I'm 34 now).

What would be a good one to get? I want something pretty small that I can stow away in the closet when I'm not using it (I live in a small apartment). I was initially thinking the microKorg but after watching videos, it seems poorly built (the keys make a plastic clacking when you press them) and generic. I'm planning to go to a music shop near me to physically look at them this week.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.
 

EviLore

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So I recently started looking into buying a decent entry level synth. I had a few keyboards/digital pianos as a teenager (I'm 34) and learned how to play some songs/read basic music. But I never pursued it past like age 17 (I'm 34 now).

What would be a good one to get? I want something pretty small that I can stow away in the closet when I'm not using it (I live in a small apartment). I was initially thinking the microKorg but after watching videos, it seems poorly built (the keys make a plastic clacking when you press them) and generic. I'm planning to go to a music shop near me to physically look at them this week.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.
Never too late. :messenger_sun:

Can you specify a bit more about the use case and budget you're targeting?

When I dived into the scene last year I started with a keyboard midi controller (Arturia Minilab Mkii) connected to my laptop/ipad until I had a better idea of what I was looking for. The software bundle it comes with replicates a bunch of classic synth hardware and maps nicely to the controller's knobs and whatnot.
 

Winter John

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So I recently started looking into buying a decent entry level synth. I had a few keyboards/digital pianos as a teenager (I'm 34) and learned how to play some songs/read basic music. But I never pursued it past like age 17 (I'm 34 now).

What would be a good one to get? I want something pretty small that I can stow away in the closet when I'm not using it (I live in a small apartment). I was initially thinking the microKorg but after watching videos, it seems poorly built (the keys make a plastic clacking when you press them) and generic. I'm planning to go to a music shop near me to physically look at them this week.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.
The Akai MPK Mini is worth looking at. It's cheap, comes with some decent software and works with all the major daws.
 

haxan7

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Can you specify a bit more about the use case and budget you're targeting?

When I dived into the scene last year I started with a keyboard midi controller (Arturia Minilab Mkii) connected to my laptop/ipad until I had a better idea of what I was looking for. The software bundle it comes with replicates a bunch of classic synth hardware and maps nicely to the controller's knobs and whatnot.
I just want to start playing keyboard/piano again, but have the flexibility to do more musically if I want to get more creative down the line. A lot of the bands I listen to now are partially/heavily synth based so I'm kinda inspired by that. I owned some cheaper keyboards when I was a kid and you can't really do much with them other than play notes/stock sounds.

I'm willing to spend up to $500 or so (thanks to my Christmas bonus).

The Akai MPK Mini is worth looking at. It's cheap, comes with some decent software and works with all the major daws.
I'll take a look at this and the Arturia Minilab Mkii.
 

EviLore

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TrainedRage TrainedRage , yeah, that's a really popular option. There are several comparable all-in-one portable 25 key controllers for about a hundred bucks: Arturia Minilab, Akai MPK Mini, Novation Launchkey Mini 25. Of those three the keybed and overall build quality on the Arturia and Novation felt better than the Akai.

The bundled software on each of them is a big consideration. This is the Akai's bundled software. Lot of complaints about it being a pain to use. Arturia's software bundle has the Analog Lab Lite software, which models a bunch of different vintage synthesizers (upgradeable for $30 or $40 to Analog Lab 3, which takes you from 500 to 6000 customizable presets for those synths), Ableton Live Lite (gets you a discount on any full version of Ableton but is usable on its own), and a solid UVI Grand Piano plugin.

Novation's bundle is good too (Ableton Live Lite, some Novation stuff, some samples, and a choice of one of four instrument plugins).

NAMM 2019 is right about to hit though and these are all due for a product refresh, so you'll probably want to hold off for a little while and get the new models. Looks like the Minilab has been pulled from Amazon already so it's probably being replaced with a mk3, likely the competitors as well.

Ultimately they'll all get you where you're going if you put the time in of course. :messenger_smiling_with_eyes:

 

嫩翼

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Anyone here heard of Cubase? I used it long before I started using more OSX-friendly DAWs.

edit: I hear it's popular in the EU, however I haven't been nor do I know people who have used it besides myself here.
 
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Winter John

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I think I found what im looking for.....
The AKAI MPK mini

Paging EviLore EviLore or any others with thoughts on the MPK?

Edit: looks like Winter John Winter John is a fan :messenger_grinning_smiling::messenger_horns:
It's fine for anyone looking to mess around and have some fun. I think it's always better to start off cheap and then upgrade when getting into a new hobby. The keys on the MPK are quite small so if that's a concern I'd recommend the Alesis V25/49. Apart from that it's fine. I haven't tried the free software because I use FL Studio and Ableton, but I've had no problems with either of them.
 

TrainedRage

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TrainedRage TrainedRage , yeah, that's a really popular option. There are several comparable all-in-one portable 25 key controllers for about a hundred bucks: Arturia Minilab, Akai MPK Mini, Novation Launchkey Mini 25. Of those three the keybed and overall build quality on the Arturia and Novation felt better than the Akai.

The bundled software on each of them is a big consideration. This is the Akai's bundled software. Lot of complaints about it being a pain to use. Arturia's software bundle has the Analog Lab Lite software, which models a bunch of different vintage synthesizers (upgradeable for $30 or $40 to Analog Lab 3, which takes you from 500 to 6000 customizable presets for those synths), Ableton Live Lite (gets you a discount on any full version of Ableton but is usable on its own), and a solid UVI Grand Piano plugin.

Novation's bundle is good too (Ableton Live Lite, some Novation stuff, some samples, and a choice of one of four instrument plugins).

NAMM 2019 is right about to hit though and these are all due for a product refresh, so you'll probably want to hold off for a little while and get the new models. Looks like the Minilab has been pulled from Amazon already so it's probably being replaced with a mk3, likely the competitors as well.

Ultimately they'll all get you where you're going if you put the time in of course. :messenger_smiling_with_eyes:

Ok, Im gonna keep saving and wait a bit more. It's cheap enough where I don't think I would regret it but I think there may be some better options like the mk2/3 or ??? (whatever I learn from this thread)

It's fine for anyone looking to mess around and have some fun. I think it's always better to start off cheap and then upgrade when getting into a new hobby. The keys on the MPK are quite small so if that's a concern I'd recommend the Alesis V25/49. Apart from that it's fine. I haven't tried the free software because I use FL Studio and Ableton, but I've had no problems with either of them.
I will check out the Alesis. I have a MicroBrute so i'm used to small keys, but I want a poly synth with a pad so its a good option.
 
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TrainedRage

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Anyone here heard of Cubase? I used it long before I started using more OSX-friendly DAWs.

edit: I hear it's popular in the EU, however I haven't been nor do I know people who have used it besides myself here.
I have not heard of it until now. Looks very clean. Could be very good for game/sound design. I like how the media tab shows the physical fx controllers. The 'Time Align' feature seems cool if you are into vocals. I feel like with a DAW you just click with one then use it. One thing I wish I could change is how lazy I get when coming to picking up a new DAW. All you need to do is take the time to learn it, after that the features can change your mind. Depends on price too. Paying +300$ for a DAW you end up never using is a bitch.
 
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嫩翼

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I have not heard of it until now. Looks very clean. Could be very good for game/sound design. I like how the media tab shows the physical fx controllers. The 'Time Align' feature seems cool if you are into vocals. I feel like with a DAW you just click with one then use it. One thing I wish I could change is how lazy I get when coming to picking up a new DAW. All you need to do is take the time to learn it, after that the features can change your mind. Depends on price too. Paying +300$ for a DAW you end up never using is a bitch.
My dad started me up on it when I was a young boy getting classically trained.. it was quite advanced (for my age, but also in design now that I have other DAW experience) and I agree in the sense that it takes a buttload of effort to get a hold of. The SFX I made are truly one of a kind.

I'm even having a nostalgia trip as I type... there are truly unique things about it you can't find anywhere else!
 

EviLore

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Teenage Engineering unveils Pocket Operator Modular :messenger_smiling_hearts:







 

EviLore

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Anyone here heard of Cubase? I used it long before I started using more OSX-friendly DAWs.

edit: I hear it's popular in the EU, however I haven't been nor do I know people who have used it besides myself here.
I haven't used it personally, but it seems like the go-to DAW choice for film composers. Hans Zimmer and JunkieXL use it:



The UI and workflow look like they accommodate the giant templates you generally need for this type of work.
 

嫩翼

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EviLore EviLore See that's where the magic is. Workflows that that have notoriously crashed my device... on top of that, the seamlessness in bringing out the instruments in the fashion that JunkieXL did, allowing them to culminate without much thought about the frequency bands occupied per instrument (given they're orchestra instruments)... Cubase really does it.

Honestly thinking, once I can actually afford some more equipment, I should really use it again. I miss the interface and remembering what I used to be able to do on it is motivating me so.

Thanks for sharing.
 
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Ixion

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Before I possibly get into playing the keyboard instead of MIDI draw (thanks again Evilore for recommending the Nanokey), the first kind of hardware I want to look into purchasing would be devices for triggering loops and adjusting effects/faders.

My current workflow involves drawing the loops in Ableton, then doing a "live performance" in the session view, then overdubbing more live effect/filter changes in the arrangement view, and then fine-tuning in the arrangement view. I'm doing all of this with my computer mouse, so now that I'm incorporating more live elements it's hard to manage multiple parameters at once on the fly. I'm having a lot of fun "performing" this way though, so I'm starting to look into how to get more control during the "performance" phase.

The Push 2 seems to be the best hardware that does everything I need, but obviously it's an expensive $800 and I don't need all of its features yet as a newbie. The usual lower-priced option seems to be a combination of the Novation Launchpad and the Novation Launch Control XL, which would total at $310.

Does that sound about right? If so, then I'll probably go ahead with the two Novation devices, unless someone knows of a better alternative.


On a related note...I also looked at the Midi Fighter Twister, which is a $210 knob controller. That seems like the ideal choice for the "knob twisting" aspect, but since the Novation Launch Control XL also includes faders, I'm thinking the Launch Control would be a better start. Unless there's a good dedicated fader controller I could buy to combine with the Fighter Twister and the Novation Launchpad?
 
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EviLore

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NAMM 2019's under way btw. Some standouts:


Arturia Microfreak - Digital synth engine, analog filter, PCB poly aftertouch keyboard, funky sequencing, $350




Moog Sirin - limited edition rework of the Minitaur with expanded octave range and ??? special functions, also LSD, $600



Behringer RD-808 - analog TR-808 drum machine clone, tbd



Before I possibly get into playing the keyboard instead of MIDI draw (thanks again Evilore for recommending the Nanokey), the first kind of hardware I want to look into purchasing would be devices for triggering loops and adjusting effects/faders.

My current workflow involves drawing the loops in Ableton, then doing a "live performance" in the session view, then overdubbing more live effect/filter changes in the arrangement view, and then fine-tuning in the arrangement view. I'm doing all of this with my computer mouse, so now that I'm incorporating more live elements it's hard to manage multiple parameters at once on the fly. I'm having a lot of fun "performing" this way though, so I'm starting to look into how to get more control during the "performance" phase.

The Push 2 seems to be the best hardware that does everything I need, but obviously it's an expensive $800 and I don't need all of its features yet as a newbie. The usual lower-priced option seems to be a combination of the Novation Launchpad and the Novation Launch Control XL, which would total at $310.

Does that sound about right? If so, then I'll probably go ahead with the two Novation devices, unless someone knows of a better alternative.
For midi controllers that don't have bundled software worth the money to you, always go used I think, since they depreciate and don't have much to worry about compared to analog gear. May still be out of your price range, but the Push 2 used is $650 or less. The Novation stuff you're looking at will work too, though, yeah. :messenger_smiling_with_eyes:
 
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lil puff

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Damn Evilore you have all of them! I was thinking about getting on e of those, but I was afraid that at some point it would collect dust.

I have never seen the Moog Sirin. Never even heard of it.


I was thinking about Silent Hill or something like that.
 

EviLore

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Dope tracks lil puff lil puff , you have quite the range. Regarding the stuff above, I'm sharing select announcements of new hardware just announced from the NAMM 2019 hardware expo with the thread to keep some discussion going, not my personal pickups, think there might be a misunderstanding there. The Sirin for example isn't in anyone's hands yet except for a select Youtube reviewer or two. It was just announced the same day of the post. That's why you haven't heard of it before. :messenger_smiling_with_eyes:
 

Ixion

Member
Sep 18, 2010
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For midi controllers that don't have bundled software worth the money to you, always go used I think, since they depreciate and don't have much to worry about compared to analog gear. May still be out of your price range, but the Push 2 used is $650 or less. The Novation stuff you're looking at will work too, though, yeah. :messenger_smiling_with_eyes:
Yeah, it might make sense to just go with the Push 2 long-term, especially since I plan on sticking to Ableton. Another positive would be that I could simply learn to play chords and melodies on the Push 2 instead of learning the keyboard.

And I say that because the Push 2 seems to allow for some pretty fine velocity sensitivity control (thus being easier on my fucked up hands). But do you know if it's possible to make the pads require little velocity, while still allowing for a decent range of expression?
 
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I haven’t done anything since college but from the looks of it fruity loops kinda looks like Cubase. Do they pretty much work the same? I’ve been itching to get back into music.
 

EviLore

Expansive Ellipses
Staff Member
May 30, 2004
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Yeah, it might make sense to just go with the Push 2 long-term, especially since I plan on sticking to Ableton. Another positive would be that I could simply learn to play chords and melodies on the Push 2 instead of learning the keyboard.

And I say that because the Push 2 seems to allow for some pretty fine velocity sensitivity control (thus being easier on my fucked up hands). But do you know if it's possible to make the pads require little velocity, while still allowing for a decent range of expression?
Your budget is your budget, but yeah, I concur with your thoughts here. You should be able to change the thresholds and velocity curves in the setup menu, "pad gain" and "pad sensitivity." Most good midi controllers allow you to fine tune that stuff.


I haven’t done anything since college but from the looks of it fruity loops kinda looks like Cubase. Do they pretty much work the same? I’ve been itching to get back into music.
These are called DAWs, Digital Audio Workstations. They're production environments for audio, MIDI, etc.

Fruity Loops evolved into the professional product FL Studio. There's a trial version and the normal edition is $200 with lifetime updates, which is pretty competitive. A couple things to note with Cubase: they require you to have a USB DRM dongle plugged in to use it, and they do annual paid updates, so those are big turn-offs for me. If you have a Mac, Garage Band (free) and Logic Pro ($150) are great values. Logic is subsidized by Apple and throws you a truckload of included plugins and tools, and is professional class. If you're on a PC or prefer platform agnostic, another popular wallet friendly DAW is Reaper ($60).

If you worked in Fruity Loops back in college, give FL Studio a shot. There's a free trial on their website, and generally the best path to take with your DAW choice is sticking with what you're familiar with, since they can take a while to learn. Basics tutorial here.