Submitted May 14, 2017 by Ed M in Austin, TX
"Best Drummer's Keyboard available"
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It does what you'd expect, hit the pads and it makes sounds that change depending on which program you have selected. Some of the programs have cool loops that you can start and stop by hittin a pad once to start and again to stop.
It has trigger inputs so you can connect more pads or acoustic drum triggers to trigger more sounds. The sequencer is ok, but if you're just getting started with MIDI and synths this is an excellent instrument that will serve you for years and has the broadest capabilities of any drum multipad + sound generator available.
Sure, the Roland stuff actually samples from the line in and has comparatively massive sample memory: that's all it has though, there is no internal sound engine and it's pads will only send MIDI Note #'s, not CC's or PC's.
The KAT / Alternate Mode stuff are more sophisticated controllers, but cost much more and have no sound engine.
With understanding of what MIDI is and what this device can help you control, support you on your gig, and even aid in the composition process, you'll understand why I say it's the best, broadest multipad controller on ththat market.
Sound Quality is excellent.
The sounds respond dynamically to my playing wonderfully.
It is compatible with many musical styles that I play; I would have no problem taking this out to some gigs as my only instrument.
Sounds great in different settings.
My tip to make this "sound better" is 60% HOW YOU PLAY THE APPROPRIATE PROGRAM and 40% MONITOR / SPEAKER SYSTEM
I would've appreciated a metal chassis, but I do enjoy the light weight. Other than that, the build quality is fine.
Least useful feature is an audio input that changes the sound of the input signal through to the output signal
Ease of Use
The sounds out of the box are great.
Super easy to setup and use with my trigger pads and pedals and other MIDI gear.
The learning curve is proportional to what you want to do with it: if you're wanting to plug it into a monitor and add some other sounds to your drumset, pretty easy. I figure that use should take you about 30 minutes if you know how to use your monitor.
If you're trying to control ableton live's tempo and have it step through lighting changes and tempo maps using m4l and USB midi AND you have no idea what any of those things are, expect a few months of study. That being said, I was able to get control of ableton and m4l under a drumstick in about 3hrs ( I obviously know how to use Ableton Live & M4L quite well )
Well made, I expect it to last for years.
I plan on getting a case for it and gigging with it.
Yes. Buy it. Best multipad controller + sound engine on the market today
I have purchased tons of Yamaha gear in the past, and will do so in the future. I have found the products to be reliable, do what is advertised, and sound good. I have never had to deal with the company for returns or service.
I have owned / own:
Hihat stands, Kick pedals, snare stands, cymbal stands
Pacifica electric guitar
The Wow Factor
I originally rejected the idea of this, preferring to use my KATs and SPDSX; when I found out that I could have the programmability of the KATs with an included tone generator, I bought it and have been pleased.
Bottom line, could have more flexibility and power with separate components, but this gets it done. If you need more than this, just add the computer or outboard sampler for the additional voices / sample time you need. The pads feel great, and there are 12 + trigger inputs.
Degreed musical professional of 30 yrs. I play percussion, drumset, piano, guitar, and bass.
I play / perform / record most western styles of music and Afro Cuban and Afro Brazilian.
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