61 Key MIDI Keyboard Controller – How to Bring Home the Right One?

midi controller keyboard

61 key midi keyboard controller A 61 Key Keyboard Controller can be useful for many applications. Here are the factors that would determine if you should go in for a 61 key midi controller or not.

Midi Keyboard controllers come in various sizes…61 keys, 76 keys, 88 keys and you get even smaller compact size keyboard controllers that have lesser than 61 keys.

Recommended 61-Key Controllers

M-Audio Keystation 61es 61-Key MIDI Controller

The Keystation 61es is a 61-note USB keyboard with velocity-sensitive, semi-weighted keys that is designed to easily integrate in any computer music environment. Class compliancy with Mac OS X and Windows XP delivers true plug-and-play setup. More advanced users can control software synths, external sound devices, and more with the assignable slider, and pitch and mod wheels. This sleek, compact keyboard is USB bus-powered and requires no external power supply. Read more

M-Audio Oxygen 61 v3 USB Keyboard MIDI Controller

The Oxygen 61 USB MIDI controller delivers next-generation functionality from M-Audio(R), the leading innovator in mobile music production technology. Oxygen 61 features eight assignable knobs and nine assignable sliders, plus dedicated transport and track select buttons. DirectLink mode automatically maps these controls to common DAW functions including transport, mixer, track pan and plug-in parameters. Read more

Novation Impulse 61 USB Midi Controller Keyboard

Novation’s Impulse comes with a full control surface and Novation’s Automap control software which makes getting hands-on with your DAW/plug-ins fast and simple. The 8 back-lit drum pads lets you warp arpeggios, roll beats and launch clips in Ableton live. Read more

61-key Controllers have Synth Action

Usually, a 61 Key keyboard Controller has synth action keys, which is suitable for keyboard players more than pianists. Even guitarists who want to add Midi to their music setup prefer using synth keys.

The Synth keys on a 61 key midi keyboard controller are spring-loaded and can be played very fast; they also have the tendency to return back to their resting position very quickly.

That’s the reason Synth action keys are ideal for playing slurs, fast runs, arpeggios and for comping i.e. playing stylistic patterns.

61 Key Controller Keyboards – Uses

If you are going to use your 61 Key midi controller keyboard for live performances, then you need to consider its sturdiness (because controllers are usually made up of plastic).

Once the performance starts, in general, the energy of all the performers on stage goes up and you tend to roughly use your gear…so better watch out for its ruggedness.

Again, if you are going to be cramped for space, a compact controller may be better over a 61-key controller (assuming you are a club DJ) since you may not have enough open space.

But one thing is for sure, irrespective of the number of keys you choose, the more the number of knobs and sliders on your controller keyboard, the easier it is for you to remotely control the various software (DAW, sequencer) parameters.

61 Key Controller Keyboard – Need Audio Interface?

A music recording setup requires you to record vocals and live acoustic instruments as well, for which you need an audio interface that will let you connect microphones.

If you do not have one already, you may wish to go in for a midi controller keyboard that includes an audio interface as well; usually, such models have built-in mic preamps with phantom power.

This way your 61-key controller keyboard provides you with an all-in-one MIDI and audio recording solution (M-Audio Ozonic is one such controller keyboard).

Conclusions – 61 Key Controller Keyboard

Before you decide on the brand to buy, take some time off to ask the above questions, which will help you determine what you need. The wide range of 61-key keyboard controllers available in the market ensures you’ll find something that meets your needs for sure. Some of the popular brands of 61 Key Controller Keyboard include – Edirol, M-Audio, and others.

You can check out the various 61 key models here

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