Intermediate Setup MIDI keyboard + software


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Hi,

I'm new here and I would really appreciate it if someone could spare a few minutes and help me get off my feet and on the right track.

A little background, I have been playing music since I was 6 years old (i'm 21). Switched from piano to guitar in 3rd grade and have been playing/writing music ever since. Through the years I've developed a strong music sense/ability and I find it very easy to jump back to piano. At this point, being in a band, I'd like to open myself back up to the piano. But I want a very versatile setup. I'm very interested in MIDI keyboards because I think their capabilities are almost infite. Through modifcations of sounds and what-not on a computer I feel like you have the power to create truly original music.

Now, I just need a recommendation on a solid MIDI keyboard and accompanying software.

I've done some quick browsing on the internets and the Akai products are impressing me -seem to be pretty good quality for a conveinent price.

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/keyboards-midi/akai-professional-mpk-mini-laptop-production-keyboard/h68164000001000

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/keyboards-midi/akai-professional-mpk25-keyboard-usb-midi-controller

as someone who is jumping back into keyboards, wants the capability to controls drums, synth, samples, and everything in between. What would be the best combo for me? I don't want to spend more than $300 on a keyboard but I was the most functionality possible at the expense of a less-wide keyboard. I also am impressed with Fruity Loops software and Ableton live (I am familiar with both), but I do not want to spend that much yet. (i am a college student and most my money goes to beer.). SO, is there software out there that substantially mimics and capabilities of FL studio and Ableton live?

Also, if anything in the above doesn't make sense please let me know, to reiterate I am new to MIDI keyboard technology.

Any advice, information or insight would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks



(and to help you help me:
budget:
Keyboard cost <$300
Software cost <$250)
 
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Joined
Jun 2, 2010
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A midi controller I would suggest you to buy and fits your needs is the M-audio axiom 61. New, it's just under $300. I guess it has everything you need: the mpc-like pads for drums, knobs, sliders, pitch bender, modulation wheel plus it has a nice key-bed, feels pretty solid.

As far as software is concerned, I use Reason 5 because i don't need audio tracks and it's great, but goes over your budget. But if you're willing to spend an extra $50, you can also get the Propellerhead Record and also be able to add audio to your songs. However Reason does not support any vst plug-ins, but has Refill packages which are really good.

Otherwise you could try Sonar or Nuendo/Cubase (they are almost the same). They support VST and have audio, but don't have such a big built in sound library.

Best of luck finding what you need and keep those fingers moving,
Andrei.
 
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Aug 13, 2011
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I have had experience with an Akai MPK49 midi controller keyboard, it is well made and has "MPC" style drum pads to bang out beats. You can probably find one on Ebay for about $250 to $300 USD. As for affordable DAW, I have heard really good things about one called "Reaper", I think it is free to try and then you buy it if you really like it. Worth a try, good luck.
 

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