Doing something different with the MIDI controller concept is a perennial challenge for the companies that make them - how do you create a product that shakes the market up a bit?
With the MAX49, Akai broke the mould in several respects. Firstly, it did away with knobs and faders and brought in ribbon-controller sliders, while CV and Gate outputs enable you to use the keyboard to control vintage synths as well as MIDI-capable ones. There are onboard sequencing and arpeggiator options, too, while the Akai Connect software 'wraps' your plugins so that they're ready to be controlled.
In workflow terms, the MAX49 enables you to significantly cutdown your mouse time once you've got it set up, and the aftertouch-capable keyboard feels great. And with that striking red finish, this controller doesn't only have a refreshingly different feature set, it has a different look about it, too.45 Stars
READ: Akai MAX49 review
BUY: Akai MAX49 currently available from:
UK: Thomann | Gear4Music
FR: Thomann | Michenaud | Star's Music | Woodbrass
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