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Questions about MIDI Controllers padKontrol vs Akai mpd24
Old 8th February 2007
  #1
Gear Head
 

Thread Starter
Questions about MIDI Controllers padKontrol vs Akai mpd24

I'm currently using cubase sx3 to produce all of my music, but I am thinking to moving to ableton to perform live. I'm currently trying to figure out what MIDI controller will be the best for what I am trying to do with ableton. basically I just want something with pads to trigger various samples in ableton (since at least for now i still make the music in cubase and will chop it up into drums/synths/samples/noises/one-hits and load them into ableton). I don't want to make synthlines or drum beats on the fly, i mostly want to trigger the various loops and then add in a few sounds and one hits and so forth. I'd also like to have knobs as well to control different effects on the fly.
I'd really like people's opinions on the Korg padKontrol vs Akai mpd24 or maybe the trigger finger or the microKontrol. I've never used any of them myself so any help would be greatly appreciated. thanks!
Old 9th February 2007
  #2
Lives for gear
 

I just got a padKontrol recently. It has very sensitive pads that will respond to the slightest touch on any part of the pad, as well as different velocity curve choices per pad, and assigning a midi note to a given pad is extremely easy.

Because tapping the pad takes so little effort, you can play for hours with very little fatigue. The fact that the pads light up is not cheesy at all, I'd rather have pads that light up than not. Basically I think it's a great piece of gear. Being a drummer, this is the only midi controller I've tried so far that lets me intuitively tap out drumbeats straight from imagination like I would on the drumset. In some ways it's actually better than a drumset (volume knob, fast precise finger work requires less coordination, etc). It's the perfect finger tapping controller, better for finger tapping and drumkit use than the much revered Roland Handsonic which I also have.

They key to drumset like control I found was assining two adjacent pads to the kick (middle of the bottom row) and same for the snare (above those), this way you can tap 32nd notes for the kick or snare, and put closed hi hats in the lower row corners, and open hi hats just above the closed ones. So you have L/R for the major sounds. The row on the top I put crashes, and the one below that toms...

I tried the older MPD16 (now $80), and the pads were not very sensitive, same with the trigger finger (but they probably are good enough to simply trigger loops, so if you want to save about 100$ they could be an option). I have not tried that MPD24.

The only bad aspect of the padKontrol I've observed so far is occasional false triggering of a pad. For instance, I've noticed that if I tap the 2 pads adjacent to the lower left corner pad, the lower left corner pad will trigger some of the time. I think this is a manufacturing defect, as I've already returned one unit which had worse false triggering, and observed another that had a faulty pad which only triggered about half the time (if anyone else has seen this or has a perfect unit that doesn't have this problem maybe let us know...). My plan is to return the unit again and test the next one in the store to make sure its perfect. Normally I wouldn't consider a product that may have any sort of manufacturing problem, but I think the padKontrol is amazing and most likely most of them won't have the problem.
If you get one, I'd suggest methodically triggering various combinations of pads adjacent to each other with some force to see if other pads trigger when they are not supposed to .

Anyway as I said I think this device rivals an actual drumset so to me its a huge step forward.
Old 9th February 2007
  #3
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bleepbleep's Avatar
 

i got the MPD-24 - and the pads are straight of the MPC2000 - big and responsive. I have used all the MPC range so this is exlamation is totally in context of that.

What i like about the MPD-24 apart from the proper pads - is also you get both layout features from the MPC style of programming - namely the 16 levels button - which puts one sample on all pads with a MIDI parameter (e.g. velocity or filter cutoff etc) at fixed rising intervals, accross the pads - great for strict dymanics and filtering etc.
It also does the full velocity trick too at the touch of a button.

Now - the clincher for me is the really nice layout and fell of the faders and roataries. The faders are large, and easy to grab becuase they are well spaced out. The rotaties are really smooth (not stepped) and the quality of the feel is top. THey are also endless - which is great when you switch bewteen pre-sets.

Programabilty is quick - large blue screen is wicked - and also the detail is perfect - you can assign ranges to the knobs to keep tweaking within boundries -

i got a Kaoss Pad - so im happy with the X-Y thing - and the Pad -Kontroll doesnt have the sheer Knobage to be usefull to me on its own.

THe m-Audio trigger finger has sucky pads - shame

- thats my bit done
Old 11th February 2007
  #4
Lives for gear
 

<< What i like about the MPD-24 is also you get both layout features from the MPC style of programming - namely the 16 levels button - which puts one sample on all pads with a MIDI parameter (e.g. velocity or filter cutoff etc) at fixed rising intervals, accross the pads >>

Can you explain how you like to use the 16 levels? It seems like each pad just has a different velocity (which I find no use for). Are you able to spread them out by pitch, like on a MPC, or do you any other tricks? Thanks!
Old 11th February 2007
  #5
Lives for gear
 
kingofswing's Avatar
I think the Padkontrol seems better, looks more professional IMO. As with all Akai products, updates take forever and what about additional templates for software?

The Korg has presets for many of the popular software drum samplers and synths, i.e. Stylus, Battery, Guru, as well as many others.

The plus side of the Korg has to be the 'drum roll', just like the note repeat on the mpcs.

M Audio shall never get my money for a control surface ever again, I have the Axiom 25 (brilliant product), but templates suck big time.


Korg Padkontrol
Old 15th March 2009
  #6
Gear interested
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bleepbleep View Post
i got a Kaoss Pad - so im happy with the X-Y thing - and the Pad -Kontroll doesnt have the sheer Knobage to be usefull to me on its own.
yo bleepbleep. I'm wondering what you mean by "the Pad -Kontroll doesnt have the sheer Knobage to be usefull to me on its own?"

it sounds like a good point of contrast between the two pieces of equipment but im not clear on what you mean. the pad-kontrol doesnt have the knobs the akai offers? im in the running to get one of the two and i also have got the Kaoss Pad so it would be awesome to hear a more thorough explanation about this Knobage.
Old 15th March 2009
  #7
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bleepbleep's Avatar
 

the mpd24 and mpd32 have a bunch of knobs and faders (plus button switches on the mpd32)
this makes it an all round controller for synths, effects etc and not just a drum pad.
the korg is really just a drum pad and is specially set up to maximise on the internal functions - flam, roll etc with the touchpad and two knobs.
Old 15th March 2009
  #8
What about the new APC40 that's designed for Ableton Live?



Pair it up with an MPD24 or 32? The PadKontrol has some really nice pads too.
Old 15th March 2009
  #9
Gear interested
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bleepbleep View Post
the mpd24 and mpd32 have a bunch of knobs and faders (plus button switches on the mpd32)
this makes it an all round controller for synths, effects etc and not just a drum pad.
the korg is really just a drum pad and is specially set up to maximise on the internal functions - flam, roll etc with the touchpad and two knobs.
aha. iv got a keyboard setup already so perhaps the pad kontrol's drum machine is more what im looking for? the sensitivity factor sounds very appealing in the padkontrol. but now im looking into the nano series and wondering if they would foot the bill well enough

what you're saying is that the akai offers a convenient amount of synt control in addition to its sturdy build and sampling setup but the padkontrol is more elaborate and succinct in terms of drum pad functionality and use?
Old 16th March 2009
  #10
Gear Addict
 
CircusofMind's Avatar
 

+1 for PadKontrol
Old 16th March 2009
  #11
Gear interested
 

Whoo! That puts the PadKontrol at a +6 (from a general forum sweeping)! Now we're getting somewhere! Consensus! Consensus!

Now for the curve ball: Krog nano series?
Old 16th March 2009
  #12
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rids's Avatar
 

I had the first MPD16 I think it was and didn't like it. Pads didn't feel nice. The newer ones feel better and would be good if you personally gel with it, but I love my PadKontrol though. It's fantastic all around for feel and ease of use. Try out what you can first. But for ableton, you'll probably want the Apc.
Old 16th March 2009
  #13
Gear interested
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rids View Post
I had the first MPD16 I think it was and didn't like it. Pads didn't feel nice. The newer ones feel better and would be good if you personally gel with it, but I love my PadKontrol though. It's fantastic all around for feel and ease of use. Try out what you can first. But for ableton, you'll probably want the Apc.
oh really? glad you brought that up. why is that? what about with reason? what is the full name of the APC?
Old 16th March 2009
  #14
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sleepwalker's Avatar
 

The APC is beyond awesome. Be aware the buttons don't have any velocity sensitivity so it's to be used WITH a drum controller, not instead of.

I've got both the pad kontrol and the MPD-24.
Verdict:

Pad Kontrol wins on the actual pads. They are easier to play and more sensitive. The MPD's are mushier and require more force.

MPD-24 wins for literally everything else. I give the win to the MPD, even though the pads don't feel as good as the PK to me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by superfly.d View Post
oh really? glad you brought that up. why is that? what about with reason? what is the full name of the APC?
Old 16th March 2009
  #15
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idiotboy's Avatar
 

"Ableton Performance Controller"
Old 16th March 2009
  #16
Lives for gear
 
wax808's Avatar
 

I've had both.


MPD: Higher quality, better pads for percussive action. Very nice knobs and sliders. Nice heavy base for finger pounding action.


PadKontrol: Nice soft action on the pads. Lighted pads might seem gimmicky, but actually make playing a bit easier especially when you have a kit that has weird pad assignments. It feels cheaper than the MPD for sure. But the pads are so damn nice.....


My take on the two is: If you are looking for something strictly for drums go with the MPD series. If you are going to be hooking it up to a PC the MPD is very nice with the knobs and sliders.

If you are looking for something to compliment an MPC then go with the PK. The pads are so different than an MPC. You can play a whole drum kit with one hand. It is also a great way to play pads and keys.


PRO-TIP: (How to unlock cheater-mode)

1. Hook up PK to MPC with Midi cables (and an external power supply for the PK)

2. Install premade scale scenes into the PK. (I have these somewhere, I can email them to you if you like)

3. Either hook the MPC up to an external synth, or assign a sample across the mpc pads using the AUTOCHROMATIC mode. (This might be JJoS exclusive on the MPC1000)

4. Play the PK like you would any keyboard.... you will realize that you are in cheater mode the moment you realize that since the PK's pads are all in the same scale that you cant play a wrong note. Chords are cake, melodies as easy as ever.



(Obviously a modified version of the Cheat-code will also work in a VST or Reason environment.)
Old 25th February 2012
  #17
Hobbs_Won
Guest
I don't mean to dig up this oldddddd thread... But I am trying to help a friend map out the PK to work with FL's FPC... But when I drag the sample to the pad it plays it in the pitch of the assigned key...

Does anybody have any idea why this is???

If I map out the MPD24 this way it doesn't do this.. it plays the chop in the original pitch no matter what note it is.
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