M-Audio announced the introduction of their latest controller, the CTRL 49, at the 2016 NAMM Show today . The new keyboard provides advanced control of virtual instruments and DAWs via a full-color, high-resolution 4.3-inch screen. As the name indicates, it features a 49-key semi-weighted keybed, and, say company officials, the directional cluster of hardware controls “has been meticulously thought out for effortless operation.”
The CTRL 49 is powered by the Virtual Instrument Player (VIP) software (included). VIP software enables users to access any VSTi virtual instrument or effect in their computer directly from the keyboard. Users can filter and search through every patch in their plug-in library by using the built-in tagging function. VIP automatically maps the CTRL 49’s controls to the selected plug-in, and displays the plug-in parameters directly on the full-color display, providing a more “natural and familiar” 1:1 workstation-style experience.
VIP software in the CTRL 49 can also create a new multi directly from the keyboard. Using a multi, producers can combine up to 8 patches from 1 or more plug-ins, and have the option to layer, mix and pan these patches all at once. Users can even set keyboard splits and transpose individual patches within their multi. This allows users to save all the new sounds they’ve created and recall them at any point.
For use in live performance, VIP software also creates “set lists” that quickly deliver access to virtual instruments and effects. With the press of a single button, users can switch to the next plug-in they want, without the use of a computer.
M-Audio CTRL 49 Features:
- Integrated 4.3-inch high-resolution full-color screen with dedicated interface buttons
- Screen provides 1:1 real-time feedback of plugin parameters
- Includes Virtual Instrument Player software— load, play and control any VST or effect plugin quickly
- Mackie/HUI for DAW control
- 49-key M-Audio semi-weighted keybed
- 9 faders and 8 buttons with Mackie Control® and HUI® for seamless control of the DAW
- Performance-ready 360-degree encoders
- FX button for future VIP updates
- 4 banks of 8 velocity- and pressure-sensitive drum pads with RGB illumination
- Roll mode, time division, transport, arpeggiator, and tap tempo buttons
- Functions as a standalone MIDI controller or controls your plugins and DAW simultaneously
- Includes software: Ableton Live Lite, AIR Creative Collection FX (20 World Class FX
- AU/VST plugins as made famous by Pro Tools®), Vacuum Pro, Loom, Hybrid 3, Xpand!2, Velvet, Transfuser, Eighty Eight Ensemble
Pricing and Availability. The M-Audio CTRL 49 controller keyboard will be available in the second quarter of 2016, and has a U.S. retail price of $499. For more information, go to the M-Audio website.