What are some things to look for in a MIDI controller?

edited October 12 in General Vote Up0

Still haven't decided on a controller. I'm coming from a hardware background where I just used a Keystep controller with various synth modules that have their own knobs and faders.

Just wondering with iOS what are some features you noticed are necessary or make for a better experience with a controller.

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  • edited October 12 Vote Up0

    With knobby controllers, one problem that only becomes apparent, when you are actually getting into using the darn things, is how to remember what all those blank knobs do, for all the different software that you use the controller with. Things to look for: easy ways to know what the knobs do. Either resign yourself to sharpie, and masking tape, with room for all of the different programs, or absurd memory games.

    A slick alternative, that is a little more costly, are midi controllers with "scribble strip" screens above the knobs, that you can label in your template editor. My favorite is the Novation Remote SL line, but I believe Korg made one as well. If you have a number of apps you want to use, that have different things going on, something like that would be ideal, if you have the time and interest to make your templates on the computer.

  • @Processaurus said:
    With knobby controllers, one problem that only becomes apparent, when you are actually getting into using the darn things, is how to remember what all those blank knobs do, for all the different software that you use the controller with. Things to look for: easy ways to know what the knobs do. Either resign yourself to sharpie, and masking tape, with room for all of the different programs, or absurd memory games.

    Amen. Novation X-Station solved this by laying the whole thing out like an actual synthesizer. Find a used one. You'll be happy. I wont gush about it again but if you search the forum for x-station, you find a few of us singing its various praises.

  • To me thick integration out of the box like launch controllers with launchpad app, korg Gadget and nanos bt... is the way but if you want more freedom and customization then search for something with integrated editor (novation, edirol...) or web based (novation circuit if I remember right)

    Also search for others users dealing with your app of choice and midi controllers to see if there are issues before buy.

  • I would have liked my controller more if it was easy to change which midi channel number it is sending on.

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