NAMM 2015 has come to a a close. With so many new gear announcements it’s hard to see what’s actually useful and what’s not. Here are my top 5 picks (in no particular order) for the hottest MIDI controllers of NAMM 2015. 

1. Novation Launchpad Pro

Price – $299.99

novation-launchpad-pro

Launchpad Pro is hardcoded to work seamlessly with Ableton Live to create dynamic and expressive performances.

You can use the grid to control any DAW or third party plug-in – plug it straight into Logic Pro, and play it like a regular MIDI controller. With that said you may want to only use this with Live, as it is built for Live.

Will Launchpad Pro rival Abletons Push controller? You can be the judge of that.

Head on over to Novation Launchpad Pro landing page for more information.


2. Akai Advance Series

Starting at $399.99

akai advance keyboard series

Akai re-invents what a MIDI controller can do with Advance Series Keyboards. In my opinion it combines a useful full color display, as found on Maschine Studio with a nice keybed.

In order to use the controller to its full potential you will need to run your 3rd party plugins within it’s ‘shell’ (the Virtual Instrument Player) which then in turn, integrates happily with the keyboard.

In the tests found by MusicRadar, they were able to stack eight 3rd-party plugins and control each’s parameters using the controller’s eight rotaries without even looking up at the computer’s monitor.

Find out more about Akai Advance Series


3. M-Audio Code Series

Starting at $249.99

m-audio-code-series

In my opinion, M-Audio is the most popular MIDI controller brand and I’m always excited to see it’s new controller lineups.

The new Code Series is certainly awesome looking and comes in the usual 25-, 49- and 61-note models.

The Code Series builds upon M-Audio’s legacy of playability. Their control parameters automatically map to popular DAW’s such as Ableton Live, Logic Pro and Pro Tools.


4. Keith McMillen K-Mix

Price – $599.99

keith-mcmillen-k-mix

I know we said only midi controllers in this top 5, but the K-Mix is a controller/interface hybrid that’s too good to not include in our top 5.

The K-Mix can serve as a 24-bit USB audio interface, a programmable mixer with flexible routing and per-channel DSP, and a DAW control surface.

The faders and rotaries are of the touch variety – this may deter some users, however this product is very durable and can be taken from studio to studio and gig to gig.

The K-Mix is schedules for release in the Spring.

Find out more about Keith McMillen K-Mix


5. Arturia BeatStep Pro

Price – $299.99

 

I am a proud owner of the Arturia BeatStep and loving it since I got it. This year Aturia steps it up with BeatStep Pro, a 16-track drum sequencer (that’s one track per pad) and a wealth of connectivity options, it’s designed to integrate with a wide range of outboard analogue and digital gear. It can also be used as a MIDI controller for your DAW.

BeatStep Pro will ship sometime in the Spring.

Read the full story on the Arturia website.