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Rating and Reviews: M-Audio Axiom 25-II MIDI

Get power and performance with the compact, mobile Axiom 25 II from M-Audio.

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"Works as advertised. No extras in the box. Rugged and good looking. If you want a keyboard, you might miss the extra keys. If yo" submitted November 10, 2011

By a customer from brankovukelic.com
Overall
Sound
Features
Ease of Use
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Musical Background: Beginner
Music Style: Electronic
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Sound: The semi-weighted keys have a nice feel to them, although they may be tough for people with no piano experience, as semi-weighted means extra resistance. If you are serious about learning keyboards, semi-weighted might give you good muscle training, but you probably to go with 49 or 61 keys instead. Pads are very sensitive but the strange velocity curve is a wee bit hard to get used to. Once you get used to them, though, pads are very nice to play on. Feature: Axiom 25 is one of those rare cases where all features work as advertised. I gave it a 9 here because of the missing essential extras. The box doesn't contain much except the keyboard and the single USB cable, though. No power supply unit, and no MIDI cables. The provided disc contains only the PDF manual, and drivers that you may not even need. The Ableton Live Lite isn't very usable to me (but full Live is good, and you get 30% off upgrade from Live Lite). Personally, I'm a FL Studio fan, so I would have liked discount on some of their VSTs, but hey... keyboard itself is still awesome. :) Ease of Use: You will probably see many mentions of M-Audio Enigma while researching this product. It's a piece of antiquated software that is supposed to be able to program this keyboard. It doesn't work at all on Windows 7, so you shouldn't count on it. However, programming it using the keyboard itself is very easy. You do have to read the manual, but it is quite a good experience. If you follow the rule of reading the manual before approaching programming, you will probably agree that ease of use is a solid 10. I don't have much experience with different DAWs. After a bit of fiddling, the keyboard worked like a charm in FL Studio. Your experience may differ depending on your particular choice of DAW. For some DAWs, this keyboard will offer straightforward integration in the form of altered functionality of some of its parts to suit the style/need of the DAW. Quality: Don't take this 10 at its face value, as this is my very first MIDI keyboard. The device is quite rugged. It has rubberized sides that protrude off the surface to prevent collision with surrounding equipment, which I thought was a VERY nice touch. The tiny rubber feet it stands on give it a firm grip on the desk, and it can't be easily moved during normal usage. The encoder knobs feel a bit cheap compared to other parts of the controller, but they operate smoothly and seem to do what they are supposed to. Pads have a very nice, smooth touch. They do feel hollow towards the corners, so you might get a strange feeling if you don't center your hits. On the other hand, hitting them on the corners yield less velocity so this might be used as a feature. Some buttons have a nice blue backlight, which also indicates their on/off status. Difference in intensity between on and off states isn't very good for a well-lit room, though. The LCD is large and clear, and displays enough information in most situations. Value: The price tag may be lower than on similar products, but you do get a lot of features packed in very small space. As someone who doesn't produce professionally, though, the price is a little bit steep. Overall: I already miss the extra keys. Apart from that, though, but at this price point, and with this feature set, I doubt I will want to look for another controller any time soon.
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