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NEED SUGGESTIONS: Switching from all-in-one DAW to something compact.


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  • NEED SUGGESTIONS: Switching from all-in-one DAW to something compact.


    I play in a band that plays over simple keyboard sequences, or rather... have simple keyboard sequences to support the band to add a more full sound.

    For years I have used all-in-one solutions for all 3 steps (composing, sequencing & live playback). First it was the Roland XP-60, then more recently the Korg M-3.

    We are constantly trying to find ways to make our gear more compact and effective. Since we don't do any live keyboard playing, we have no need to lug a keyboard itself.

    I'm now thinking of converting over to a Mac-based solution to strip things down further. Here's my thought: use a Mac with controller for both rehearsing/composing and sequencing. Then output our finished sequences to a compact playback unit for live shows (ie AKAI MPC unit).

    Since the software-based world is new to me, do you guys have suggestions for specific gear to help me migrate over to a new system? I'd love suggestions for both Mac software as well as live playback units which are RELIABLE.

    If there is a compact all-in-one solution I'd still consider it but I haven't found anything smaller than the M3. Again I'm open to suggestion.


  • #2
    I wonder if you could do what you need on an iPad running Garageband. If so, that would be about the epitome of compact.


    • #3
      That's actually a great suggestion, thank you.

      I wanted to mention that I use a pedal to start each song, could I set this up on an iPad? Also, would the iPad be reliable for sequencer playback? I may be looking for a device that is more audio dedicated.

      Would the Akai MPC work (the smaller ones, not the 5000)?



      • #4
        Your set up is a little confusing. A sequencer is only really needed for controlling gear (such as the synths you've mention), but if you're not wanting to lug around the actual synths, why would you still need sequencer playback from a computer or iPad? Woudn't a backing tape, cd or iPod work just the same? You could just keep the setup you have now for practices, then use a backing track live.
        Hard: JP-8000, MC-505, R3, microSTATION, Moog Theremin, miniKP, Ineko, Bitrman
        Soft: Ableton Live 8, Korg Legacy Collection, FM8, D16 Classic Boxes/SilverLine Collection


        • #5
          Yes, those devices would work though I'm looking for something a bit more reliable and dedicated. CD & tape playback I wouldn't consider b/c of the reliability issue. iPods maybe, but still I'm wondering would something like an Akai MPC do the trick? Reason being, I would have the option to plug in a foot controller to start the next song in the playlist, there are more options with outputs and such than that of the iPod.