Choosing The Right MIDI Keyboard

Hi, everyone!

I’m considering purchasing an Akai MPK Mini MKII, for use with Zynthian as well as a DAW. I’m concerned, though, because this Amazon review says that there is a design flaw with the keys on the MPK Mini.

Is anyone using an MPK Mini MKII? Have you ever had problems with the keys? Does it play well with Zynthian?

And, while we are on the subject of keyboards, what other keyboards do you guys use?

(I sent the design-issue question to the guys at Akai. We’ll see what they say.)

Thanks so much!

Its really not a very nice feeling keyboard, very plasticy. Probably pretty good for triggering stuff and key changing for sequences but it’s obviously built to a price.
The set up programme is a bit flaky as well …

Personnally I’ve got a Roland A88 hammer action which is lovely , a Behringer Motor 61 which was bought as a zynth controller but mostly for the flying faders.

I’m actually looking for a nice 49 note keyboard but I’m trying to resist the tempation ot buy things at the moment as I’ve got too much clutter in my life. :slight_smile:

1 Like

I considered the MPK Mini but ended up with the Arturia KeyLab 49 instead. I do really like it. I chose it because of the nearly full sized keys and the fact that it had a regular MIDI out in addition to the USB, but I wish I had bought the Arturia KeyStep instead for the step sequencer. I do have other hardware step sequencers, but I am finding I can never have too many channels of step sequencing :slight_smile:

Most of the relatively cheap midi controller keyboards are going to feel a little cheap and plasticy, but some of them are pretty good, in my opinion, but I’m not really a keyboard player in the strict sense.

1 Like

Thanks for the tip! I checked it out on Amazon, and found their MiniLab MkII. It looks fantastic, but someone complained about the encoders not working correctly. Do you ever have trouble with your encoders?

I haven’t had any problems other than getting it set up to play well with my electribe 2. That took a while.

That doesn’t mean that they don’t have problems, but I haven’t encountered them. Personally, I like the Arturia stuff.

1 Like

I have an Alexis QX-49 which is now discontinued. It is fairly feature rich although configuration does require regular reference to the user manual and it has some odd performance modes that take some getting used to. The keybed is suboptimal, feeling rather springy although not terrible. I don’t think it would stand up to much abuse, indeed I bought it cheap as it was broken. I had to fix some keys, adjust some squeaky springs (with varying success) and reply the USB type B socket. It is small and light making it easy to transport but likely to break in transit without a decent carrying case / bag. I generally use it as my testing device for geeky projects rather than for performance. It is currently on sabbatical with my son at university. He immediately found a firmware bug where note-off messages were not sent for some chord combinations. This is fixed in the latest firmware update and the keyboard is serving him well as an input device. He may even take it out for the occasional Animé music gig :slightly_smiling_face:.