Alesis Intros $199 Vortex Wireless Keytar


At the 2014 NAMM Show, Alesis has introduced a $199 wireless Keytar controller, the Alesis Vortex Wireless.

Plugging an included USB receiver dongle into any Mac or PC establishes a live USB/MIDI link with the Vortex Wireless. There is also a standard MIDI output (5-pin) mounted in the Vortex Wireless for connecting to hardware MIDI gear.

Key Features:

  • Two words: Wireless Keytar
  • 37 velocity-sensitive keys with aftertouch
  • 8 velocity-sensitive trigger/drum pads
  • USB dongle creates a wireless connection to any Mac/PC
  • Volume slider, pitch wheel, ribbon controller, sustain pedal jack
  • USB, battery, or external power; USB MIDI + 5-pin MIDI outputs
  • Includes SONiVOX Vortex I DVI and Ableton Live Lite Alesis Edition

Vortex Wireless can run on batteries, USB bus power, or can be powered using an optional AC adaptor. Each Vortex Wireless also includes a USB cable with extension for the USB receiver dongle and 4 x AA batteries.

In addition, the Vyzex Vortex Patch Editor Software is also provided, making it easy to create, edit, and backup patches to your computer. Ableton Live Lite 8 Alesis Edition is also included.

The Alesis Vortex Wireless has a street price of about US $200.

16 thoughts on “Alesis Intros $199 Vortex Wireless Keytar

  1. A wireless keytar. I like the idea of that. Add a remote Daw controller and I could compose music in a different room to my music PC. Nice.

  2. I can’t quite get used to the thumb pitch bend thing. I wish I liked this unit more. And that the one I bought wasn’t $300 without wireless. And not white.

    I’d love to know what the wireless is like, reliable wireless midi systems are expensive.

  3. I really enjoy my Alesis Vortex and I think that this was a great idea but I wouldn’t shell out the money for a new Alesis keytar until they fixed the God-awful pads. They are so unbelievably bad, it’s frustrating. Why did they use piezo pickups to sense the velocity? Terrible quality pads. Also, they need to beef up the quality of the overall construction. Polish out those jagged plastic edges and make it sturdier. Also, the keys will break very quickly and it’s a huge hassle to get new ones to replace them. An octave of white keys and an octave of black keys are both one piece of plastic and the plastic bends to provide the spring back and that makes them break so much easier.

    When will they make a keytar with trigger pads on the neck to control with the left hand?

  4. Having worked on the design of the Roland AX-1 back in the 90s, I’m always happy to see people taking an interest in keytars. Built-in wireless midi is great and the price is definitely right, but I have to say, I’m not keen on the styling at all. The innards might be worth a look for customising though.

  5. Keytarrrrrrr! Glad to see these making a comeback. Heh, for giggles I bought a Wii Rockband 3 midi keytar. It works wirelessly with my PC using the included dongle. Almost makes me wonder what the guts of this Alesis keyboard are? I paid £10 for it new. So much fun I found two more for about £7 each on Amazon to hack and mod. It’s not on a par with this Alesis or the AX-1, but it’ll kill time while you wait :o)

  6. wireless to ipad would be cool, but they probably developed their own wireless protocol to the USB dongle to reduce latency..

    having said that, i would like to know whether the USB bus power will work with the iPad or will it give the “draws too much power” message..

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