Have you ever wanted to unleash your creativity through music production? Look no further than the Alesis Q88 MKII – an 88 Key USB MIDI Keyboard Controller with Full Size Velocity Sensitive Semi-Weighted Keys and Music Production Software Included. This powerhouse of a controller is designed to enhance your studio production experience, giving you complete control over your music with its versatile features.
In this review, we’re going to take a deeper look at the Alesis Q88 MKII and explore its endless possibilities for music production and beat making. With its 88 full-size velocity-sensitive keys, you can easily create expressive melodies and control virtual synthesizers with ease. The octave and transpose buttons allow you to access the full piano range, while the pitch bend and modulation wheels add that extra touch of expression to your performances. Whether you’re a professional musician or a beginner, this MIDI controller is universally compatible with any music production app that accepts a MIDI controller, making it an essential tool for your creative journey. So let’s dive in and discover the power and potential of the Alesis Q88 MKII.
How Alesis Q88 MKII Works
The Alesis Q88 MKII is a versatile USB MIDI keyboard controller designed for music production and beat making. With its 88 full-size velocity-sensitive keys, this controller offers a realistic playing experience while providing complete control over your virtual instruments and production software. Let’s dive deeper into the features that make the Q88 MKII stand out.
Full Size Velocity-Sensitive Semi-Weighted Keys
The Q88 MKII features 88 full-size velocity-sensitive keys, giving you the same playing experience as an acoustic piano. The keys are semi-weighted, providing a balance between the weighted feel of a piano and the lightness of a synthesizer keyboard. This allows for expressive playing and dynamic control over your music.
Octave and Transpose Buttons
Accessing the full piano range is made effortless with the Q88 MKII’s octave and transpose buttons. These buttons allow you to shift the keyboard’s pitch up or down, giving you access to a wider range of notes and octaves. Whether you’re playing a melody or a bassline, these buttons provide flexibility and convenience.
Pitch Bend and Modulation Wheels
The pitch bend and modulation wheels on the Q88 MKII add a layer of expressiveness to your playing. The pitch bend wheel allows you to bend the pitch of the notes you’re playing, adding subtle or dramatic effects to your performance. The modulation wheel, on the other hand, allows you to control modulation parameters such as vibrato or tremolo, giving your music a more dynamic and nuanced sound.
Assignable Volume Knob and Transport Controls
The Q88 MKII comes with an assignable volume knob and transport controls. The volume knob allows you to adjust the volume of your virtual instruments and sounds with precision and ease. The transport controls, including play, pause, stop, and record buttons, provide tactile control over your DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) and virtual synth, making your production workflow more efficient and intuitive.
Alesis Q88 MKII Uses
The versatility of the Alesis Q88 MKII makes it suitable for various uses in music production and performance. Here are a few examples:
The Q88 MKII is an excellent tool for studio production. Its full-size keys and velocity sensitivity make it feel like you’re playing on a real piano, empowering you to create intricate melodies and chord progressions. The assignable controls allow for easy manipulation of virtual instruments and effects, giving you complete control over your sound.
Virtual Synthesizer Control
Whether you’re a synth enthusiast or an electronic music producer, the Q88 MKII provides an ideal platform for virtual synthesizer control. With its pitch bend and modulation wheels, you can shape your sounds and create expressive performances. The extensive compatibility with various music production apps ensures a seamless integration with your preferred virtual synth software.
With its velocity-sensitive keys and assignable controls, the Q88 MKII is perfect for beat production. Whether you’re creating drum patterns or triggering samples, the responsive keys allow for nuanced and dynamic beats. The transport controls enable quick and intuitive control over your beat-making software, enhancing your workflow and creativity.
|Number of Keys||88|
|Key Type||Semi-weighted, full-size|
|Pitch Bend Wheel||Yes|
|Assignable Volume Knob||Yes|
|Transport Controls||Play, Pause, Stop, Record|
|Compatibility||Any music production app accepting a MIDI controller|
|iOS Compatibility||Works with Apple Lightning to USB Camera Adapter (sold separately)|
|Software Included||Akai Professional MPC Beats, 7 expansion packs, Melodics lessons|
Who Is Alesis Q88 MKII For
The Alesis Q88 MKII is perfect for a wide range of musicians, producers, and performers. Whether you’re a professional producer looking for a versatile MIDI controller, an aspiring musician wanting to learn and experiment with music production, or a live performer needing a reliable keyboard controller, the Q88 MKII offers the features and functionality to meet your needs.
Here are a few examples of who would benefit from using the Q88 MKII:
- Professional music producers and composers
- Electronic music producers and DJs
- Home studio owners and enthusiasts
- Live performers and keyboardists
- Music students and educators
Pros and Cons
- Full-size velocity-sensitive keys for expressive playing
- Versatile and comprehensive control features
- Extensive compatibility with music production apps and software
- Included professional software suite with expansion packs
- Works with iOS devices for mobile music production
- Apple Lightning to USB Camera Adapter sold separately for iOS compatibility
- Heavyweight may not be suitable for portability
- Can I connect the Alesis Q88 MKII to my computer without external power? Yes, the Q88 MKII is powered via USB, allowing you to connect it directly to your computer without the need for external power.
- Does the Q88 MKII come with a sustain pedal? No, the Q88 MKII does not come with a sustain pedal. However, it has a footswitch input that allows you to connect an optional sustain pedal for added expression.
- Can I use the Q88 MKII with my iPhone or iPad? Yes, the Q88 MKII is compatible with iOS devices. You can use it with apps like Garageband by connecting it via the Apple Lightning to USB Camera Adapter (sold separately).
- Is there an option to adjust the keyboard’s sensitivity? Yes, the Q88 MKII allows you to adjust the keyboard’s sensitivity to match your playing style. You can customize the velocity curve to your preference.
What Customers Say About Alesis Q88 MKII
Customers rave about the performance and functionality of the Alesis Q88 MKII. They appreciate the realistic feel of the semi-weighted keys and the extensive control options for their music production. The included software suite and expansion packs received high praise for their quality and variety. The compatibility with both computers and iOS devices is also a standout feature for many users.
The Alesis Q88 MKII offers outstanding value for musicians and producers seeking a versatile MIDI keyboard controller. With its full-size velocity-sensitive keys, comprehensive control features, and extensive compatibility, it provides a seamless and enjoyable music production experience. The included software suite and expansion packs further enhance its value, making it a great choice for beginners and professionals alike.
Tips and Tricks For Best Results
- Familiarize yourself with the included software suite and explore the different expansion packs to discover new sounds and inspiration.
- Experiment with the pitch bend and modulation wheels to add expressiveness to your performances.
- Take advantage of the assignable controls to tailor your workflow and improve efficiency in your music production.
- Customize the keyboard’s sensitivity settings to match your playing style and preferences.
In conclusion, the Alesis Q88 MKII sets itself apart as a comprehensive and highly functional USB MIDI keyboard controller. Its full-size velocity-sensitive keys, extensive control features, and universal compatibility make it a must-have for music producers, beat makers, and performers. The inclusion of a professional software suite and expansion packs further enhances its value, offering endless possibilities in music production. With the Q88 MKII, your creativity knows no bounds.