Not only a super-compact MIDI keyboard controller (though it most certainly can be that), Akai Professional’s MPK Mini Play mk3 is also a self-contained portable keyboard that contains 128 built-in sounds.
These cover acoustic/electric pianos, synths, pads, drum kits and more, and the fact that there’s a built-in speaker - a better, more powerful one than was in the original MPK Mini Play - means you can jam away without any other hardware. There’s also a 1/8-inch headphone jack so you can shut the world out when you need to.
Portability is further aided by a battery power option, which promises to give you more than 14 hours of runtime. You can also power the keyboard via USB.
The 25-note keyboard is said to be more playable before, with improved velocity response. With just two octaves to work with, though, there’s not going to be a great deal of scope for giving two-handed performances.
The eight velocity-sensitve drum pads, meanwhile, are now officially ‘MPC-style’ ones, while the four parameter control knobs have been moved above them. There’s an arpeggiator onboard, too.
We’re still awaiting full spec and pricing details for the MPK Mini Play mk3 - and it hasn’t yet appeared on the Akai Pro website - but the word is that it’ll be launched in the US in March.