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Sonicbyte says

Hi, I will need to buy a new midi controller soon because my old Roland controller is broken. I was browsing the web to find a good one, with lots of controls, but specially with a very good key response and feeling, that’s is really important to me, I can’t afford an expensive fully weighted keyboard, so I need a good semi-weighted keyboard instead.

I read great reviews about the Novation 61 SL MkII, the automap software to control almost any software seems impressive, however I will love to hear if anyone of you have one of these.

Thanks !!

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alkis says

That’s my keyboard / midi-controller / all-around-keyboard-thing that I use for everything, the Novation SL MKII with 61keys. I’ve used it for live performing as well with Ableton Live. I hasn’t let me down for the past one and a half year that I have it. The keys are quite high-quality ones for its price, although they’re not semi-weighted. This is semi-weighted: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_lmFhCQQTHYQ/THRsQRaqR1I/AAAAAAAAACQ/PZyK79Tx9-w/s320/M-Audio+AXIOM+25-Key+Semi-Weighted+Keyboard+USB+MIDI+Controller.jpg But they have great response and feel quite robust and very smooth to play on.

The automap is a great feature, although I program every knob and fader individually (there is a manual option by disabling the automap function) by entering its midi CC value, or note value, program change value, etc. Whatever feels best for you though. It feels so complete as far as midi controlling goes that if I get a small midi controller for electronic music performance it’ll probably be a Novation 25 SL MKII .

Let me know what else you’d like me to share about it, can’t think of anything else to say about it!

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SonicCube says

That’s my keyboard / midi-controller / all-around-keyboard-thing that I use for everything, the Novation SL MKII with 61keys. I’ve used it for live performing as well with Ableton Live. I hasn’t let me down for the past one and a half year that I have it. The keys are quite high-quality ones for its price, although they’re not semi-weighted. This is semi-weighted: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_lmFhCQQTHYQ/THRsQRaqR1I/AAAAAAAAACQ/PZyK79Tx9-w/s320/M-Audio+AXIOM+25-Key+Semi-Weighted+Keyboard+USB+MIDI+Controller.jpg But they have great response and feel quite robust and very smooth to play on.

The automap is a great feature, although I program every knob and fader individually (there is a manual option by disabling the automap function) by entering its midi CC value, or note value, program change value, etc. Whatever feels best for you though. It feels so complete as far as midi controlling goes that if I get a small midi controller for electronic music performance it’ll probably be a Novation 25 SL MKII .

Let me know what else you’d like me to share about it, can’t think of anything else to say about it!

Same here

No issues with Logic and Mac OSX 10 .5.8 :)

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Sonicbyte says

Thank you guys !

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alkis says

By the way, one more reason for which I love the Novation SL MKII controllers:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hjBSyb91UTc

High quality midi controlling.

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gbiasillo says

I also have the SL MkII 61 as my main controller (I also have a Clavinova fully weighted piano). I did have the replace my first one as the power switch was faulty but the second has had no issues at all.

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paradoxic says

That’s my keyboard / midi-controller / all-around-keyboard-thing that I use for everything, the Novation SL MKII with 61keys. I’ve used it for live performing as well with Ableton Live. I hasn’t let me down for the past one and a half year that I have it. The keys are quite high-quality ones for its price, although they’re not semi-weighted. This is semi-weighted: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_lmFhCQQTHYQ/THRsQRaqR1I/AAAAAAAAACQ/PZyK79Tx9-w/s320/M-Audio+AXIOM+25-Key+Semi-Weighted+Keyboard+USB+MIDI+Controller.jpg But they have great response and feel quite robust and very smooth to play on.

The automap is a great feature, although I program every knob and fader individually (there is a manual option by disabling the automap function) by entering its midi CC value, or note value, program change value, etc. Whatever feels best for you though. It feels so complete as far as midi controlling goes that if I get a small midi controller for electronic music performance it’ll probably be a Novation 25 SL MKII.

Let me know what else you’d like me to share about it, can’t think of anything else to say about it!

The Novation SL MKII 61 is semi-weighted…...

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BeyondTheVeil says

novation controllers are pretty good in use, but automap 4???? possibly the worst piece of software every written. most problematic ive ever seen and yet its pretty essential to get the most from those controllers. i know of dozens of people who regret trying to even get automap to work.

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gbiasillo says

yes, totally agree. I hardly use automap at all now, and just switch it off and use the ‘learn midi CC’ in kontakt.

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Basspartout says

novation controllers are pretty good in use, but automap 4???? possibly the worst piece of software every written. most problematic ive ever seen and yet its pretty essential to get the most from those controllers. i know of dozens of people who regret trying to even get automap to work.

+1
Same experience here. I bought the 61 SL MKii in Summer and gave it back after two weeks trying to get that stupid automap to work.
Like Russell said, I feel it is truly one of the worst pieces of software I encountered. The intentions were good, but the realization…. the presets for starters, are absolutely useless. I exspected to find presets for popular synths and plugins, but nothing except a huge amount of I dont know, I think it was UAD plugins, mostly effects, which are much faster to assign via Control Link in my DAW (Presonus Studio One 2) anyway.
I gave it severeal attempts to program automaps myself until I finally gave up. It’s either not working, or much too complicated compared to the control link function of Studio one. Forums are pretty much empty and it feels that lots of users had a similar experience like me and just gave up.
So I totally switched off automap and used it with Control Link only and for that it proved much too confusing, because it has too many similar controllers, and to assign and name them all by hand, well, sorry, no!
I really wanted it to work with especially the Reaktor synths like Microprism, Photone, Spark etc, but I couldnt get automap to work for that, and it proved that the control link somehow couldnt remember which Reaktor instrument was loaded. (This may not be the fault of the SL MKii, but also NI / Studio One communication thing, but since the SL Mkii is focused on automap it was way too complicated to get it to work) And like I said, I exspected to find lots of useful help and information from thousands of happy users in the forums… but no :( Nada.
So I gave it back and I if I’d try another controller, I’d probably try out the M-audio Matt (alumo) bought a while ago. He seems pretty happy with it, so maybe he could give a short statement here.
What I really liked about the SL MKii is definitely its keyboard. It has a really nice feel and touch and was fun to play, for my taste by far the best keys of all the controllers I tested. (Roland, Alesis, Akai, Cakewalk, Behringer…. I think the only ones I didnt have a chance to test were the M-Audio).

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