Akai Professional has announced the MPK61, the fourth model in the MPK line of keyboard/MPC performance controllers.
From the press release:
The MPK61 is a keyboard performance MIDI controller that expands the popular MPK line. Each MPK controller combines a piano-style keybed with a bank of genuine Akai Professional MPC pads, assignable Q-Link controllers and some of the technologies from the icon MPC. Producers, performers and DJs will appreciate the MPK61’s mix of 61 semi-weighted keys with aftertouch, 16 MPC pads with velocity and pressure sensitivity, 72 assignable Q-Link, MPC Note Repeat, MPC Swing and an arpeggiator. The MPK61’s size is ideal for performers who need a larger range than the original 49-key MPK49 offers, but also prefer the lighter weight and associated portability of a semi-weighted keyboard. The MPK61 retains the key split features from the MPK88, enabling the performer to divide the keyboard into two zones for performing with two different programs at once.
Like its 25, 49 and fully weighted 88-key siblings – the MPK25, MPK49 and MPK88, respectively – the MPK61 empowers musicians to create and manipulate melodic, harmonic and rhythmic content and manipulate quickly with its arpeggiator, MPC Swing and MPC Note Repeat technologies. The MPK61 comes with Ableton Live Lite Akai Edition software, one of the most popular and powerful performance and production programs worldwide. Ableton Live Lite enables musicians to spontaneously compose, record, remix, improvise, and edit musical ideas in a seamless audio/MIDI environment. The MPK61 is a MIDI controller that sends MIDI values over USB for plug-and-play performance with Mac and PC. Because they are MIDI compliant, the MPK series works with virtually all MIDI recording, sequencing, and performance software for musical performers from keyboard players to producers to DJs and VJs.
“The MPK61 was designed to meet the requests of many keyboard performers,” said Adam Cohen, Director of Business Development, Akai Professional. “They loved the MPK49’s portability and ease of integration into their setup; they liked the large scale of the MPK88, and requested something in between: the MPK61.”
The MPK61 performance keyboard controller will be available from professional audio and musical instrument retailers Q3, 2009.