Winter NAMM Show Update

2012 NAMM ShowThe 2012 NAMM Show is proving to be the best NAMM Show in years for electronic musicians. In 2011 and 2011, many companies were being cautious, not taking risks and even skipping the show. This year, there’s renewed faith in the music industry and companies are introducing interesting creative new products.

Some of the highlights of the last couple of days we’ve spent at the Show:

  • Teenage Engineering introduced the OpLab – a musical experimental board for music;
  • Jomox introduced the Moonwind Analog Filter Tracker;
  • Korg came out with a couple of new Kaoss instruments, the Mini Kaoss Pad 2 and the Kaossilator 2;
  • Behringer introduced their take on the idea of an iPad docking station for musicians, the iStudio iPad Dock;
  • We spent some time with the Arturia Minibrute and, yes, it’s an analog beast;
  • Electrix introduced an interesting new controllerist style MIDI controller, the Tweaker;
  • We spent some time at the Nord booth, and the Nord Drum offers interesting drum synthesis potential, while the Nord Piano 2 and the Nord C2D Drawbar Organ are very nice performance instruments; and
  • We checked out the Akai area and were wowed by the Max 49, which – with MPC pads, LED faders, a step sequencer and CV support – has something for just about any type of electronic musician.

In addition to checking out the cool gear at this year’s Show, I spent a lot of time over the last two days meeting with vendors to build relationships that will, hopefully, help us bring you better coverage.

I also had the opportunity to talk in-depth with a variety of musicians at the Show:

  • Author Mark Vail, who’s working on a new book on synthesis that I want to read right now – but he’s got some major editing still to do;
  • Former Keyboard magazine editor Dominic Milano, who led the magazine through many of its best days;
  • Sound designer and composer Dave Gross (the team he led created the original shipping Sound Schemes for Windows 7);
  • Composer Amin Bhatia (who, with Ari Posner, scores the TV series Flashpoint) is working on a surround sound remastering of one of his synth classics; and
  • Diego Stocco, who’s not only an amazing sound designer, but an ultra-charismatic Italian guy that seems to know every person at the Show;
  • And many other amazing musicians and gear makers.

My hope is that, in 2012, we’ll be able to share with you news of what these inspiring electronic musicians are doing.

Finally – here are a few more images from the show!

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