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Rating and Reviews: M-Audio Axiom 25 Keyboard

25-key velocity-sensitive semi-weighted action keyboard with assignable aftertouch.

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"The Best Feature Packed 25 Key Midi Keyboard Around!!!" submitted July 13, 2006

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Musical Background: 10 Years
Music Style: Everything from Rock to Pop
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
Sound: No sounds, but it can be used to shape sounds with the modulation wheel, which is great and very effective. Feature: Amazing features. 8 Pressure sensitive rubber pads taken from the trigger finger. they feel perfect for drums and give a perfect bounce feel to them. The transport bar is great to use with my DAW, and it allows me to control the basics. The Keys feel perfect, and have a piano type feel to them. The curves are just right and make the dynamics feel warm on most soft synths. Ease of Use: Very easy to setup, and works great out the box. Quality: Feels very solid and will last a lifetime. Value: Super value, its comes with pads, transport, pots and nice semi weighted keys for playing authentic instruments. Manufacturer Support: Im not a fan of M Audio support, its a hit and miss. The Wow Factor: Looks very slick, and its has a very nice blue lcd screen. Overall: Better than any other midi controller in the market right now. I like my 25 keys for idea sketches and laying down quik midi passages, and move to my other 61 note keyboard for main studio work.
24 of 25 people (96%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Excellent product - highly recommended!" submitted February 3, 2007

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Musical Background: Prosumer
Music Style: Downtempo, hip-hop
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
Feature: It's obvious they've thought deeply about what software-based musicians need. Good number of features to this end - though quite deep so if you're a newbie at this, be prepared to spend some time w/ the manual getting things set up to your working style. It can take awhile, but just be patient as it's worth it. That said, it does come with about 20 presets for popular software programs (ie - Reason, Live, etc) so if you use those, you can be up and running in minutes. Ease of Use: Once you read the manual (usually as reference to something you want to do, as opposed to reading it through straight) it's quite easy to use. Quality: This is by far the best controller (of this size) out there. NOTHING competes in terms of quality. The keys feel great and so do the pads. Everything can be tailored to in terms of velocity curves, so you can customize to suit your playing style/situation. When shopping for a controller, one test I did on all of them was to bang on the keys (fortissimo) -- with every controller out there, you could see the entire keybed physically move; in one case even the buttons on the front were moving up and down. However, with the Axiom -- no such problem at all. It is solid. Value: This is a great product both in terms of features as well as quality. You won't regret getting one -- I tried all of them, and this hands down was the best. That said -- for traveling folks who just need to trigger stuff, etc. there are lighter, less expensive alternatives. This is ideally suited more for a studio set-up. Manufacturer Support: NA - though I recommend downloading the latest driver from the website, instead of the CD. That way you are ensured of the latest driver possible. The Wow Factor: Fantastic - aesthetically, the industrial design just exudes quality. Makes every other controller out there look like crap -- including much more expensive ones. The Axiom series is the best out there right now. Overall: I would definitely recommend this without question to folks who create software-based music. The keys and pads feel great (aftertouch too!) and the build quality is solid. One thing to note: it doesn't come with a power adapter (powered by USB bus) and the manual is on a CD in PDF format. Kind of a pain, but nothing too troublesome.
35 of 37 people (94.59%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"pretty sweet for a 1st midi controller" submitted October 19, 2007

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Musical Background: guitarist, beginner producer
Music Style: dnb and hip hop beats, etc.
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Sound: well sound quality really depends on your computer of course, this just gets the job done. Feature: the click knobs are ok but id like a smoother feel instead. the pads are a little unforgiving but actually better for expressing sounds and drums especially. the keys are semi-weighted but they feel kind of stiff and even a little stuck sometimes; was kinda dissapointed by that actually. Quality: well, its plastic and bulky, blue display lights up nicely, the keys are just what kind of bummed me out. Value: the price on here is good, especially since this the only midi controller at this size w/ pads and quite a few features. The Wow Factor: its sexier looking in the picture but hey, its supposed to sit in your studio. the blue led adds a little something. Overall: i'll probably stick w/ this for a while since its got a bit of everything. i found it a bit stiff when playing but its just a controller, not a grand piano. i think for the price and everything, its great for beginners. i picked this over the ozone because of the pads.
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"Black n Blue Meanie" submitted January 11, 2007

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Sound: No sound Feature: The reviewer below is talking nonsense. The Axiom Keybed is well thought out, the barriers on the sides protect the two end keys from breaking or warping from side to side. I have to thank M Audio for the design...thank you. Ease of Use: Simple. Quality: Top Notch build quality. The best of 25-KEY actions. The money has gone into supwerb build as you notice it right from the start. This thing has been built so tightly, you feel or hear no rattles or looseness. Brilliant. Value: For the dough, its amazing. Manufacturer Support: ??? Not sure The Wow Factor: The best looking midi keyboard in my opinion. The blue lCD is huge and glows beautifully. Overall: I love it to bits. The feel and expression is second to none. I use it in my studio all the time and its my main controller.
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"i like it." submitted October 9, 2007

By a customer from inbox.lv
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Musical Background: hobbyist
Music Style: neurofunk probably
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Sound: no problem, everything sounds Feature: well, i actually wanted to get a keyboard and padset, coz wasnt sure, wheter these pads are usefull. actually not too much so far. it's still more productive to write drums graphically. continious knobs are with clicks, rather too hard to forget, and this sucks (i tried it before, no surprise here) and they never work in app without tuning first. display is beauty, but i would prefer 7 leds for octave shift. not used aftertouch so far. Ease of Use: ease of use is ok, but, all the advanced setting are so complicated to even understand that i'll beter be writing music with base functionality, than read manaual for hours and trying to get this it do smthg extra. The enigma software is a peace of code made in late 80's apparently, and hardly helps to simplify anything. jeez. Quality: well, this is my first midi control ever, and it looks good, feels good, works as expected. i actually tried other keyboard kontrollers in range 100-400 and apart from novation x-something (kbd + analog synth, really kewl unit), so apart - the axiom is my choice. may be black keys are overdamped a little, but i dont care. Value: i think value is ok. i payd aboud $240 its ok for europe. may be instead of ableton le i would prefer any ineresting vsti or drum smaple lib or discount offer. i dont mean ableton is not worth a penny, it's just wrong idea imho to switch host sequensor with new controller. Manufacturer Support: do not trust in support, only in money back. never used for axiom. The Wow Factor: the unit looks ok, its lacks dimonds aroud screen, however. what i like most is a blue light behind finctional buttons when activated. the buttons are useless, but the light isnt. Overall: i like it.
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"A big bang for buck controller" submitted April 26, 2006

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Feature: Just learning many of the features, but the way the pads and controls are preset is pretty sweet. The pad feel good and responsive like MPC pads (or trigger finger-haven't used it), and the weighted keys are a big +. Ease of Use: Even though it is only 25 keys there are quick octave transpose buttons to go up or down. Its USB powered and DC adapter but you have to buy your own adapter which is one downside, but the USB and adapter bought so far worked no problems. Quality: It seems like it is very well made, hard plastic, the knobs, keys and pads are solid, its light weight but for portability thats a +. Nothing seems like it would break easily. Value: For the features and price, I don't see any other keyboard controller giving the same bang for buck, it puts the pads on the korg to shame (in my opinion) and the keys are full sized and semiweighted (piano like keys)! Manufacturer Support: Haven't used them. The Wow Factor: The black and blue interface are pretty cool, this seems to be the way hardware synthesizers are going first korg, then akai, now m-audio (well there controllers at least).
7 of 8 people (87.5%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Excellent value..." submitted November 28, 2006

By a customer from yahoo.com
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Musical Background: DJ
Music Style: Electronic
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Feature: The endless encoders have many different modes - which will help w/ mapping to different programs. The keys feel wonderful (semi-weighted). The drum pads are similar to the trigger finger, and aren't the best - but are still very functional. Ease of Use: The Enigma software can have a learning curve. Also, the 25-key axiom unit has less function buttons than that of it's larger brothers, so many buttons are multi-function. This can be difficult at times. Quality: Very well constructed. Large keyboard, heavy build. I could probably throw it down a flight of stairs and it would still work fine. Value: I purchased mine used for less than $100, so it was a really excellent value for me. Even so, I would pay full price for it any time. Overall: I would recommend this keyboard, or any of the larger models. Buy it.
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"This thing's awesome!" submitted May 27, 2006

By a customer from sbcglobal.net
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Musical Background: Live performer/Home recorder.
Music Style: Trance/White Label stuff
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Sound: Well...it's a controller. No sound. The action is nice and the pads are touch sensitive. Nice action as well. Triggered Reaktor, Yamaha Motif and Virtual DJ from Atomix with it. Feature: I have to rate this a 10 again because it lacks nothing. I was pleased to have a CV (continuous voltage) input for volume control, as well as, a sustain input. The range suits my needs with 2 octaves. If that's a problem there are other models with more keys. I have to take a point off for not including Sonar as a template. Maybe down the line. Not sure if it's a Twelve Tones or M-Audio issue. Also, why not drivers for Win2000? I use it with Win2000 and it works fine. Waiting to discover any driver issues, none, so far. USB 1.1? Why? Maybe because it's only midi. Ease of Use: Easily configured and saved the configuration to PC using Enigma. Used with Reaktor, mapped the controllers accordingly. It's easy if you're used to manipulating MIDI parameters. After a brief learning curve, it's flexible but basic if you are a programmer. Quality: This thing is solid. I like it. Pads are tough. It can take some abuse. Value: A little high but okay considering the product. Manufacturer Support: No experience with this product, yet. However, M-Audio has been favorable for me in the past. The Wow Factor: Perfect resource on the go with my laptop (Windows XP) and in my home studio (Windows 2000). Overall: My only complaints are the ones above regarding support for Sonar and Win2k drivers. Otherwise, in it's class, the best choice.
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M-Audio Axiom 25 Keyboard Customer Review submitted December 1, 2006

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Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
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Sound: I'm sure if it made a sound, it would sound great! Does a great job of playing sounds though and the pads feel good...bonus! Feature: Very programmable. Concise controls. Solid build. Ease of Use: This is where it takes the hit. The keys sit lower than the plastic on the sides which can make it tricky to play the higher and lower keys. Try one in a store and you'll know exactly what I mean. Major design flaw! Overall: Great features! Pads are awesome! Annoying recessed keyboard....
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"Good things." submitted September 1, 2006

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Sound: I have several different hardware and software abilities when it comes to my sound pallete, and well those are all good and dandy. Otherwise then that its a controller,, no sounds. Feature: Great bang for the buck. Compact and light but strong and NOT meek! Ease of Use: I have M-audio controller 88 Keystations Pro, and I really enjoy their ease of use and functionality. Quality: Hardshelled and easy-minded. Value: Cheap and Hugh,, the best of all things. Manufacturer Support: Haven't needed it yet. Means they are pretty easy to use and built pretty well now doesn't it? The Wow Factor: Want and have. Overall: Hey wish it wouldve had some sounds or effects or something.
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"solid, stylish, and absolutely excellent key feel; highly recommended" submitted April 18, 2007

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Ease of Use
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Musical Background: Producer
Music Style: Hip Hop
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Sound: N/A Feature: excellent feature set for this price Ease of Use: relatively speaking, unless you wish to map all knobs etc to your software of choice, its plugs and you play. enigma software by m-audio needs some work as far as user friendliness Quality: very high quality build; very solid physically. pads are stiff but very solid as well. semi-weighted keys feel superb (best key feel on any controller at any price in my opinion) Value: broad feature set, quality and practicality for its price Manufacturer Support: N/A The Wow Factor: styling is excellent; blue backlit LCD looks great; feel of keys is virtually unmatched for a midi controller; even the power rocker switch on the back is rock solid. Overall: highly recommended midi controller at this price for beginner or pro
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