Best 49 or 61-Key MIDI Keyboards ?

astokesmusic

New member
I’m searching for a really good MIDI keyboard with 49 or 61 keys. I travel a lot, but I also want something to record with when I’m at home and looking to lay down ideas on my MacBook, rather than go to the studio. Any suggestions for good MIDI keyboards that offer weighted keys, transport controls for the DAW, and other controls like faders/pan pots, solo/mute, etc.? I’ve had my eyes on the Novation Impulse 49 or 61 for some time, but is it still a relevant and powerful choice for today?
 

TAE

All you have is now
Probably one of the most fun keybeds I've ever played...So weighted keys are all groovy but for ease of use, speed and sensitivity...this one is a win.
Novation Impulse 61...It seems it is a love hate thing at Sweetwater with a pretty low rating...Out on the keyboard BBS most love the keybed but some are frustrated with the controls and software. I just use it as a controller keyboard and don't use the knobs and sliders other than the pitch bend..
 

astokesmusic

New member
Probably one of the most fun keybeds I've ever played...So weighted keys are all groovy but for ease of use, speed and sensitivity...this one is a win.
Novation Impulse 61...It seems it is a love hate thing at Sweetwater with a pretty low rating...Out on the keyboard BBS most love the keybed but some are frustrated with the controls and software. I just use it as a controller keyboard and don't use the knobs and sliders other than the pitch bend..
@TAE So you’re suggesting the SL MkII over the Impulse? They were both in the video.
 

Slouching Raymond

Active member
I bought a Novation Impulse 61.
It doesn't play like a piano, just doesn't feel right.
I don't use it with a daw, but with Roland's Sonic Cell, and Integra 7.
The Roland RD64 does the job much better, and does feel right.
I think the Impulse 61 was a waste of money.
 

TAE

All you have is now
@TAE So you’re suggesting the SL MkII over the Impulse? They were both in the video.
Sorry I just grabbed the video off of Sweetwater on the Impulse page assuming it was showcasing the impulse..should of just grabbed a picture..I suspect they are the identical keyboard actions with different features. As per Slouching Raymonds view..some people don't like it and I have never compared it to RD64 so have noo opinion on the comparison.. Mine has been sitting collecting dust for years since I purchased it to run VST's off an ipad did one gig where it all stopped in the middle of a song and that was the end of that experimentation..up to it stopping in the middle I was in heaven with all the new sounds I was going to be able to play with one controller..Working on the clav part of the song below at the speed it is played was killing me with the MODX weighted keyboard so I thought I'd try it out on the impulse holy moly what a difference and the sensitivity is far superior to the much more expensive MODX..I can actually pull the licks off substantially easier with the non weighted keys...duh Trying to figure out how to do it I am considering just buy the 73 key version of MOdx ..we'll see..

This damn keyboard player plays these licks in his sleep I hate him..still have not gotten all of em down yet..
 

dustgazer

New member
I bought a Novation Impulse 61.
It doesn't play like a piano, just doesn't feel right.
I don't use it with a daw, but with Roland's Sonic Cell, and Integra 7.
The Roland RD64 does the job much better, and does feel right.
I think the Impulse 61 was a waste of money.
I have a Novation Impulse 61 as well, and I really like it, by far the best 61 key controller I have had. But true, it does not play like a piano at all. I have a Yamaha CP33 88 key digital piano for that. I don't know of any 49 or 61 key controllers that have a true piano-like graded weighted action, and maybe the RD64 (which I have no experience with) would be the better choice if that's what you're looking for. I use it for emulating plucked or bowed instruments in a DAW, for when I don't want a piano key's percussive resistance.
But the Impulse does have a nice, subtle response, a more than weightless a feel for a synth-action board, the aftertouch works as advertised, and it doesn't feel like a toy as some of the entry-level budget models do. YMMV and all of that.
 

Papanate

Active member
I’m searching for a really good MIDI keyboard with 49 or 61 keys. I travel a lot, but I also want something to record with when I’m at home and looking to lay down ideas on my MacBook, rather than go to the studio. Any suggestions for good MIDI keyboards that offer weighted keys, transport controls for the DAW, and other controls like faders/pan pots, solo/mute, etc.? I’ve had my eyes on the Novation Impulse 49 or 61 for some time, but is it still a relevant and powerful choice for today?
I like the Arturia Keylab 61 -it doesn't have weighted keys - but likewise it is very portable - it is just a controller so You would have to use the Mac to provide sounds ( it comes with Arturia Lab 4 and 5).
 
Top