What keyboard do you have as controller?


I have several keyboards I use in different situations, according to gig type, venue, and which band I am playing with. I have a few permanently planted in rehearsal rooms, such as my ancient E-Mu Proteus MPS 61 key (still working great since my purchase in 1992?) 5-pin MIDI cable required :wink: And my Kurzweil 2000 V3, also working great. They both serve as controllers now. My Yamaha MOTIF XF6 was the last workstation type I bought, and is mostly used as a controller/backup sound source on differing gigs. I sold the other workstations I had years ago.
When I switched to controllers, my 1st purchase was my very dependable E-MU Xboard 49 which is at every gig I play. I have 2- M-Audio 88es, and 3-49es, mostly for backups and smaller gigs, and rehearsal. An Arturia Mini Lab 25-key for when I need a triggering device or testing away from full rig. A Roland A-88 for special gigs and studio work…great weighted key action. An old Roland PC-300 for rehearsal room and a Roland A-800PRO.
AND…still shopping for a couple more to replace the well worn ones I have.

  • MOTIF XF7 - gigs
  • Numa Compact2 and Controlkey88 - rehearsal rooms
  • KAWAI MP7 SE; Crumar Mojo61 and various synths - studio


Roland A-800 Pro.
It has a good keyboard which supports after touch.


One of the really great things about the Roland A-800 for use with Cantabile is that you can assign the controllers to one of two virtual MIDI outputs, meaning that it acts like a controller keyboard AND a control surface in one. I typically send all of the transport controls to output 2, which is dedicated to providing input to my Background Rack.

It’s also very light to carry and is USB-powered. Wish they did a non-weighted 88-note version!


I’m thinking of buying the A-500


I narrowed down my choice to the A-800 or Axiom 61 and then went with the Axioms because there were lots for sale used.


OK, I’ve now made my choice for my upper keyboard and gone for the Akai MPK-249 - a great little beast with a nice keyboard (less “clacky” than my Alesis and M-Audio 49ers!) and an overall great feel to it.

The only little disadvantage is that the transport keys cannot be assigned freely, but only to either MIDI transport controls or fixed CCs - but that only meant reworking my background rack bindings and re-programming my rehearsal room Alesis 49ers so everything works nicely again.

Interesting fact that caused me a bit of confusion: when setting the Akai’s transport buttons to send CCs, they ONLY send CC values of 127 when pressing, but NOT values of 0 when releasing! When my buttons stopped working after the first press, I discovered this behavior in the MIDI monitor - fortunately, @brad provides the NoEdge Button binding, which takes care of this nicely…




Just out of curiousity. The NanoControl has 8 sliders, which drawbars are you matching to each slider?


Korg NanoKey2, NanoPad2 and NanoKontrol2 :wink:

(but I’m a guitarist :smiley: )