Avid Downsizes, Sells M-Audio To inMusic

AvidAvid announced today that it is downsizing and getting out of the consumer audio and video business.

The company’s consumer audio products are being sold to inMusic, the parent company of Akai Professional, Alesis and Numark, among others. The products involved in this transaction include M-Audio brand keyboards, controllers, interfaces, speakers and digital DJ equipment and other product lines.

Avid will continue to develop and sell its Pro Tools line of software and hardware, as well as associated I/O devices, including Mbox and Fast Track.

Avid also plans to reduce the number of its employees by about 20% through the sales and layoffs.

inMusic Announcement

inMusic today also announced its acquisition from Avid of the AIR Software Group and M-Audio.

The AIR Software Group and M-Audio join a family of music brands that includes Akai Professional, Alesis, Alto Professional, ION Audio, Numark, plus another recent addition, Sonivox.

“With the addition of AIR and M-Audio, we’re in an even better position to push the boundaries of computer-based composition, production, and performance,” said Jack O’Donnell, owner and CEO, inMusic. “This will be very positive for musicians, who will get better software, better hardware, and a much more integrated music-making experience as a result.”

The acquisitions also signal a new relationship with Avid. Select Akai Professional and Alesis products will also now include Pro Tools.

M-Audio and the AIR Software Group will join the other brands at the 2012 Summer NAMM Show in July and plan to debut a number of new products at the show.

31 thoughts on “Avid Downsizes, Sells M-Audio To inMusic

  1. reaper user here but i haven’t even tried PT but once at a friends studio and he had just built it and was more the owner than op so he didn’t have a clue how to do things either

    but looking at the performance of the company over the past year and the industry’s reliance on PT i think this is a really smart move for the company

  2. >Sells M-Audio To inMusic

    Lately I’ve been looking to buy myself a present, something to have fun with over the summer. I was considering the TE OP-1 or the M-Audio Venom. After reading the thread “Korg Kaossilator 2 + Mini Kaoss Pad 2 Now Available” I buckled down and ordred a Kaossilator 2. This morning I see that M-Audio was sold. Venom owners still have a nice keyboard, but it’s disconcerting when the company sells the people that make something you play. I envy Venom owners for having such a nice machine, but now I feel sorry for them for not having a big company behind them. Good luck to everyone.

    1. Have there been any updates to the Venom since it came out?

      I checked it out early on, but it looked like the Mac editor had somethings that were incomplete at that time.

      1. yeh there are updates, the last one was supposed to fix external MIDI timing.. but it doesnt really work to well… could be my setup but it drifts heavily when trying to sync to external clock

        i just match the internal tempo to my project session and use it that way

        it sounds good tho, the presets are shit but if you program it there are some heavy heavy sounds in there.. also some serious 70s type analog

      2. I just hope M-Audio doesn’t just go away and they take the technology from M-Audio and put it in Akai. Because right now they basically have duplicate products.

  3. M-Audio seemed to do perfectly fine ( from the consumers’ perspective ) for many years before they were bought by Avid, no reason why they can’t flourish without them…

  4. So Avid draws it’s line in the sand and continues the trend of companies lining up behind a particular hose for the race ahead. To stay viable in the new marketplace M-Audio products would have to add functionality and decrease price, and that would pull value aware from the ProTools line which is positioned as “Elite and professional”. Also, hardware is really expensive to make and ship, so jettisoning those business functions will drastically decrease operating costs for Avid. I would expect ProTools software to remain the most expensive of all DAW options, and continue it’s trend of limited hardware support. Stands to reason since they are opting for “hi end” rather than “volume” sales.

  5. Avid’s consumer stuff sucked anyway. I had a FW410 and M-Powered PT rig. Spent more time getting stuff to work than I did making music. Good riddance.

  6. Apple killed Avid when it slashed the price of Logic to $200. How do you compete with that?

    Avid is coasting on their momentum now.

    1. Avid’s not going anywhere. Not with current studio investments and especially not with Media Composer/Symphony.

      Things might look differently for Avid if FCP X had played out in another way. But for now, they might as well trademark the word “post-production.”

      PT is not Avid’s only cash cow.

  7. Support for Venom has been abysmal. An AU that never came out, an editor that’s barely been updated maybe once. I like the keyboard but I wish I had put the money towards a different company’s synth. Maybe they’ll update SONETHING now…

  8. I concur with the comments on the Venom. I’m so disappointed with the lack of updates and support on this device. Perhaps inMusic will bring new life to the Venom.

  9. You know this is just what the music industry needs LESS DIVERSITY AND LESS COMPETITION! Maybe, inMusic can buy Roland, Korg, and Moog! Then there will be just one company and no one has to worry their little head about innovation! Brilliant!

    Seriously though, it feels like the big companies are less and less interesting to me everyday. I’m much more inclined to look at gear from small homegrown companies. The modular analog companies and the hackable DIY stuff like Shruthi and MeeBlip.

    This acquisition was for audio recording lines, but it feels like the music gear industry as a whole is just consolidating…

    1. don’t want to point out the obvious but this hasn’t changed the net amount of competition even slightly. one giant audio company has sold some of its some divisions to another giant audio company.

      personally, i’m grateful. avid selling crappy 2 in 2 out usb interfaces to hobbyists and trying to write software instruments when there are specialists who do it much much better has distracted them from their core purpose – making tools for actual professionals. avid and protools are still the industry standard for all high level audio and video production.

  10. I’m happy to hear this! I like MAudio gear but Avid’s customer support sucks! I think you could buy support for an issue which is totally lame, or visit the forums.

  11. Another blow to the Northbay employment scene. 20% is huge. It will take them months just to recover from the psychological impact of 1 in every 5 employees losing their jobs. That being said, I have never been a huge fan of M-Audio stuff (although my Midiman Studio 2 is still plugging along after 10 years). Folks have been grousing about the lousy driver updates for years, so hopefully their will be some product consolidation and better customer service in that regard.

  12. I’m pretty happy with my Akai and Alesis products. Not sure how the group benefits from the M-Audio brand. Maybe some tech synergy in audio interfaces?

  13. Good Choice,. Pro Tools sound quality is the best in my opinion but its overpriced. I also have Logic and Ableton and they never sound as good as Pro-Tools. Editing midi and audio in Logic is a nightmare compared to the others. Nobody is even reading this, why am i writing this, goodbye.

    1. >they never sound as good as Pro-Tools…Nobody is even reading this, why am i writing this, goodbye

      On the internet there’s always somebody reading everything. And you raise a point I’ve never seen anyone describe in detail. I’ve never personally compared the output from different DAWS, but I have heard other people specifically say that some “sound better” than others, with high-end things like Pro-Tools and Neundo sometimes being characterized as sounding “better.” Does anyone know if this is just subjective, just a personal reaction to different software, or do the different DAWS internally process sound files with higher/lower resolution or something? I’d always assumed a given format sound file would sound the same from any source, but I guess there might be some technical issue, unless it’s just subjective. Anyone know for sure, rather than just guessing?

      1. A lot has to do with its absolute 0 gain. I stopped using pro tools long ago but I loved the Mix Plus system…still think it sounds the best. Pro Tools has a digital 0 that equals -14db analog. Cubase/Nuendo is -18 or -23, somewhere around there. Many daws are in the -25 to even -35 range. Basically, PT is HOT. Its got a great DSP algorithm that very well replicates the dynamic range of an analogue system so if you run your inputs in pretty low gain your dynamic range is HUGE compared to recording into, say, Live.

        1. Now this is an interesting comment. Mind sharing where you learned that information? I’d love to read up on it, given the opportunity.

  14. I’m fine with Akai and M-audio doing what they’re doing, but what do we need to do to get Alesis to make a new synth like the Andromeda? 😀

  15. This seems to create a monopoly since M-Audio was the main competitor of Akai/Alesis. Now there’s no real competition. Perhaps Novation, but I think they are small in comparison. With less competition, things will only get worse.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the M-Audio brand name gets slapped on all of the Ion products (available at Target, Walmart, etc). It wouldn’t be the first time inMusic (aka Numark) has done this. They did something similar to the Akai name after buying them out. Just slapped that name and logo onto a lower quality Alesis product. The new Akai products are no where near the quality of the earlier Japanese Akai products.

    The owner of inMusic could care less about music or the people buying these products. Boycott Alesis/Numark/Akai/Ion (and now M-Audio) if possible. There are many alternatives out there and buying them will promote a better future industry.

  16. Just FYI, your post seems to contradict itself. In the first paragraph you say “Now there’s no real competition” and in your final paragraph you say “There are many alternatives out there”.

    1. As far as competition goes, I was implying competition for mainstream mass market gear. There are alternatives from smaller companies, but these don’t necessarily compete with the larger companies for market share.. Novation seems sort of in the middle.

      Instead of nitpicking, how about adding something constructive next time.

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