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Akai AX-60
Overall Rating
Submitted: May 30th, 2004
by Anonymous Reviewer
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Sound Quality
As I said before, don't buy this one if you are looking for realistic sounds. It works a beauty for electronica, techno, drum and base and the likes of it, but I attempted to use it in a pop-band and found it incredibly limited and in fact too "cold". To produce unpredictable electronic noises, it equals most of what's out there and is far easier to use than more vintage synths. The lack of velocity on the keys makes it a bit sterile though, and you really need to work on the filters to say perform a decent jazz-solo. It is not really the best synth for this sort of use. If you can get your hands on a 612 sampler, there seems to be no end to the possiblities. Imagine running small samples of words through the arpeggiator and then going crazy with the filters. Aphex Twin could call it a day... Without this sampler (they are like siblings removed at birth), the rating would be slightly lower, probably a 7. As for the sound quality, it is not really quality in terms of hi fi-ness that is the issue here, but rather expressiveness and noise and brrrilggarrssshhhwwwwggrrriiiiiouuuuuuu
The arpeggiator seems to jump out of tempo if you are overdoing the effects manipulations. This makes it difficult to synchronize with modern bpm- oriented gear. I have broken a couple of keys, which were pretty easy to fix, and never had any problems with it although I've used it extensively on gigs, even gone on tour with it- without a case!
General Comments
I used this synth extensively during recording sessions for the album "Electricity" by the norwegian electronica group GET ON (www.antrokult.net/geton) on Happy Few Records- listen to some of the audiotracks on the audio pages and start guessing which tweaks originate from the AX 60. One reviewer said "imagine aliens landing", and the AX 60 definitely had something to do with the overall sound of the album... With weighed keys or velocity, and with the matching 612 sampler, it would be more than a gem. As the policy of Get On is recycling, I am proud to say someone actually gave this baby to me as a gift (in return I set the person up with a MOTIF). In fact all of the equipment used on that recording is second-hand, including a rhodes I bought off a guy on the bus for US $ 50 !!!
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