The Akai MPC Key 61 has changed the game… again

Akai’s MPC has been a mainstay in studios ever since the original was launched in the late ‘80s. In the proceeding years, Akai has refined the ubiquitous beat-maker to create a workflow that producers know and love. 

The first machine to combine a sampler and drum machine sequencer, the MPC sought to simplify the process of sampling and combine it with the workflow of a drum machine. For many producers, this was a game-changer.

Since the original Roger Linn-designed-MPC60 hit the shelves there have been over 20 different versions of MPC released, all of which are united by the common theme of beat-making on a 4x4 pad grid. Until now.

With an ever-growing number of updates to the MPC2 software, it was little wonder that the latest iteration of the MPC now features a semi-weighted keybed with 61 full-size keys and even features aftertouch.

Akai MPC Key 61

(Image credit: Akai Pro)

While, on paper, a workstation is nothing new, no other keyboard of its type quite reaches the MPC Key 61 for power and utility. The Key 61 also features 16 RGB velocity-sensitive MPC drum pads; an audio interface with high-quality AD/DA converters, featuring two ins and four outs; wireless connectivity through Wi/Fi and Bluetooth; a 7” colour touch screen with Multi-Touch, plus all the performance refinements expected from a synthesizer and we haven't touched on what lurks inside.

Running the MPC2 software is a Quad Core ARM processor with 4GB ram and 32 GB of internal storage, the Key 61 can easily handle running several of the 20+ instrument plugins that are included, turning this production powerhouse into a synth powerhouse, giving you everything you need to create melodies, pads, leads and basslines for all of your productions.

The MPC Key 61 is more than capable of becoming the centre-piece of any production studio with its seamless DAW integration; an array of high-quality plugin instruments; support for third-party plugins; a huge amount of bundled sound content; not to mention all the I/O and control ports you’ll need for your outboard gear. It definitely puts up quite a case for becoming your next studio purchase.

For more information on the MPC Key 61, check out the Akai website now.

Akai MPC Key 61

(Image credit: Future)

MPC Key 61 features

  • 61 semi-weighted, full-size keys with aftertouch
  • 16 RGB velocity-sensitive MPC drum pads with note repeat
  • 4 assignable Q Link controller knobs
  • Onboard Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 
  • Quad Core ARM processor 
  • 4GB RAM
  • 32 GB internal storage
  • 128 Track Midi Sequencer
  • 8 audio tracks
  • 7” colour touch screen with Multi-Touch
  • Pitch Bend/Modulation Wheels
  • Dedicated transport section
  • 25 cutting-edge instrument plugins
  • Class-compliant USB connectivity
  • Audio interface with high-quality AD/DA converters
  • 2 mic/line inputs with high-end preamps
  • 4 discrete line outputs 
  • Headphone output
  • 8 CV/gate jacks