Today, Akai Professional has announced a new performance controller in collaboration with Image-Line, designed specifically for Fruity Loops Studio.
The Akai Fire is a dedicated hardware controller, to help give performers and producers more hands-on control of the software, to speed up their workflow and enhance the user experience.
Akai are the grandfathers of grid-based hardware, having originated the venerable MPC60, with the help of Roger Linn, some 30 years ago. It seems fitting in the year that sees the twentieth birthday of FL Studio that a plug-and-play grid-based controller is released for the software.
The unit offers a large 4 x 16 matrix of RGB pads for live recording and playing of notes, triggering samples and launching patterns. It also doubles as the means to input patterns into the Step Sequencer view in FL Studio.
To compliment this, there are four Touch Capacitive Knobs that can operate as 4 banks (channel, mixer and two user modes), to adjust a range of parameters, as well as a graphical OLED screen to display currently selected items. There are also dedicated transport controls and the unit allows you to navigate various elements of the software so you barely have to touch a mouse to make music.
Up to 4 units can be linked together to give the user a potential 8 x 32 grid to work with.
Here’s an introductory video giving an overview of how the unit works.
The Akai Fire is available now for US$199.99, which is approx. GBP175.00