NAMM 2014: Back in 2012, Alesis launched the Vortex, a keytar-styled MIDI controller. This year, the company is showing the Vortex Wireless, which throws cable-free operation and an accelerometer into the mix, too.
The wireless connectivity is via a dongle that plugs into your Mac or PC. The Vortex has 37 velocity-sensitive keys with aftertouch, 8 velocity-sensitive pads, a volume slider, a pitch wheel, a ribbon controller and a sustain pedal jack.
Power can be drawn via USB or mains power but, if you are going to go wireless, it would make sense to use the battery option.
Check out the Alesis Vortex Wireless press release below. It'll cost $199.99
Alesis Vortex Wireless press release
Alesis, a leading manufacturer of instruments and tools for today's musician, announces the new Vortex Wireless USB MIDI keyboard controller with accelerometer.
A keytar for the modern performer, Vortex Wireless delivers unprecedented control and expression by transmitting MIDI via a wireless USB connection for dynamic on-stage freedom, and includes the virtual synthesizer plug-in Vortex-I Digital Virtual Instrument from acclaimed software creator SONiVOX. In addition to 37 velocity sensitive keys with aftertouch—the keyboard features an assignable accelerometer (tilt-sensor) in the neck that can translate gestures into additional controls—adding vibrato when the neck is pulled up, for example. For additional control, Vortex Wireless provides 8 drum/trigger pads, 3 assignable knobs, a multi- mode ribbon controller, pitch bend wheel, and a volume slider.
Plugging the included USB receiver dongle into any MAC or PC establishes a live USB/MIDI link with the Vortex Wireless. There is also a standard MIDI output (5-pin) mounted in the Vortex Wireless for connecting to other MIDI-enabled equipment, such as a favorite hardware synthesizer. Vortex Wireless can run on batteries, USB bus power, or can be powered using an optional AC adaptor. Each Vortex Wireless also includes a USB cable with extension for the USB receiver dongle and 4 x AA batteries, so users can begin playing right away.
In addition, the Vyzex Vortex Patch Editor Software is also provided, making it easy to create, edit, and backup patches to your computer. AbletonTM Live Lite 8 Alesis Edition is also included.
Alesis Vortex Wireless Keytar Highlights:
- Combines expressive control with onstage mobility
- 37 velocity-sensitive keys with aftertouch
- 8 velocity-sensitive trigger/drum pads
- USB dongle creates a wireless connection to any Mac/PC
- Volume slider, pitch wheel, ribbon controller, sustain pedal jack
- USB, battery, or external power; USB MIDI + 5-pin MIDI outputs
- Includes SONiVOX Vortex I DVI and AbletonTM Live Lite Alesis Edition
"Nearly every keytar or remote keyboard has required a cable of one sort or another, be it power, MIDI, audio, or USB" said Nate Lane, Product Manager at Alesis. "With the Vortex Wireless, the player is truly free to move about at will. This onstage freedom allows the player to make the most of the onboard accelerometer and other extensive controls to create an original, expressive performance without the hassle of cables on stage."