Best Midi keyboard for Reaper – When it comes to the best MIDI keyboards for Reaper there’s a lot to consider. Once you have your price down, you will be able to decide which options look the best.
You see, it’s not hard choosing the best midi controller for Reaper if you know what you’re looking for and what you need.
Remember, if you don’t know how many types of key ranges there are, you’ll never be able to figure out which one’s best for you.
You might end up buying a much smaller range or overspend at a key range you didn’t even need! In both cases, you’ll regret your decision big time!
Thus, a buyer’s guide is absolutely essential. It helps you understand the basics of your desired product and eventually enables you to identify your priorities.
This way, you can pick a suitable product for you so that you don’t regret it later.
Once you know what you like and need, you can choose a MIDI controller accordingly.
If you need further guidance and a narrower list of good options, you’ve got the four MIDI controllers mentioned above controllers to start with.back to menu ↑
1.Nektar DAW Controller (T4)
- KEYS & PADS 49 note 2nd Gen synth-action keyboard with after touch. Expression & pedal sockets. 8 super-sensitive pads with pressure. Chord: Trigger up to 6 notes from one key or pad. Hold: Holds played notes until deactivated – great with legato
- NOTE REPEAT Inspiring performance tool. Real-time control of trigger rate, accent, swing and gate. Separate settings for keys and pads. Switch on/off at any time with dedicated repeat buttons. Sync to external clock. Control velocity with pressure or wheels
- NEKTARINE Instant access to Nectar plugin control in any VST/VST3/AU DAW. Customize mapping or create plugin maps from scratch. Browse patches directly from Panorama T4. Layer up to 8 VST/VST3/AU plugins with mix control of volume, pan, mute, solo and select
- DAW CONTROL Nectar DAW integration included for Bigwig, Cubase, GarageBand, Logic, Unendow, Reason, Reaper and Studio One. MCU compatible for control of almost any other MIDI Music software
- CONNECTIONS USB port for power and data connection to your computer Foot switch jack, assignable (pedal not included) Expression pedal jack (pedal not included) MIDI Output On/off switch
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- Software Includes Analog Lab software with 5000 synth sounds Includes Ableton Live Lite Includes UVI Grand Piano model D Hardware 61 keys with velocity Controllers: 1 clickable encoder, 9 encoders, 9 30mm faders, 6 transport switches, 4 command switches, 1 modulation wheel, 1 pitch bend wheel, 8 touch and pressure-sensitive pads Connectivity MIDI out, USB, Sustain pedal Functions as a universal MIDI controller Twin-line LCD screen MCU
- Most musicians need three things from a controller keyboard: powerful DAW control, software instrument integration and efficient navigation of presets
- KeyLab Essential is Arturia's newgeneration of controller keyboards that satisfy all of these requirements in an elegant, thoughtful design
- KeyLab Essential includes a full function DAW control area and a central screen section that allows instant access to the 5000+ included Analog Lab 2 presets
- All the knobs, sliders and pads you will need are available at your fingertips and 8 mappings assignations can be selected in an instant
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- Ultra-responsive semi weighted keyboard with aftertouch
- Full DAW/plug-in control surface with 8 knobs, 9 faders and buttons
- Automap 4 control software enables instant hands-on access to your DAW and plug-ins
- Multi-function drum pads enable you to warp arpeggios, roll beats and launch clips in Ableton Live
- Includes downloads for: Ableton Live Lite, Novation’s Bass Station synth, XLN Audio Addictive Keys, and a Loopmasters Sample Pack. Novation now offers a 3-Year Warranty on this and all other Novation products.
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- Music Production and Beat Maker Essential – USB powered MIDI controller with 25 mini MIDI keyboard velocity-sensitive keys for studio production, virtual synthesizer control and beat production
- Total Control of Your Production - Innovative 4-way thumbstick for dynamic pitch and modulation control, plus a built-in arpeggiator with adjustable resolution, range and modes
- The MPC Experience - 8 backlit velocity-sensitive MPC-Style MIDI beat pads with Note Repeat & Full Level for programming drums, triggering samples and controlling virtual synthesizer/DAW controls
- Complete Command of your Virtual Instruments and FX - 8 360-degree knobs assign to all your music studio plugins for mixing, tweaking synth controls and more
- 1500+ Sounds and Everything You Need for Pro Production - Complete Music Production Starter Kit including MPC Beats, 6 Virtual Instruments and 2GB of sound content
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- MIDI Keyboard with 49 full-sized, velocity sensitive square-front keys, perfect for playing Virtual Instruments
- 8 velocity- and pressure-sensitive backlit pads for beat production and clip launching
- 4 assignable knobs and 4 assignable buttons interface with your music software. Seamless, visual feedback via illuminated buttons and knobs
- Octave Up and Down buttons let you access the full keyboard range and Pitch and modulation wheels deliver expressive, creative control
- Premium Software Included - Includes ProTools, First Alesis Edition, Ableton Live Lite 9 and Eleven Lite, plus Mini Grand, DB-33 and Xpand 2 virtual instrument software by Air Music Tech
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6.Korg, Midi Controller
- Low-profile, 25-key USB-MIDI keyboard, ideal for use with laptop and netbook computers
- Advanced-design keyed offers improved accuracy and velocity-sensitive keys
- Sustain button – ideal for entering piano parts!
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7.M Audio Oxygen 49
- Compact, ultra portable performance keyboard controller with 49 full size, synth action velocity sensitive keys and on board pitch bend and modulation wheels for expressive performances
- 8 velocity sensitive trigger pads for beat production and clip launching; 8 assignable knobs and 9 assignable faders for manipulating virtual instruments, daw parameters and plugins on board lcd screen provides instant parameter feedback
- Dedicated octave up and down buttons increase the keyboard to the full melodic range and transport buttons let you control your daw without reaching for the mouse
- Innovative directlink automatically maps controls to popular daws including ableton live, pro tools, logic, cubase and more
- Class compliant, plug and play functionality and USB powered specification for simple user friendly setup
- Comprehensive production software package for mac and pc worth over $100 included; ableton live lite, sonivox twist and air music tech xpand 2
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- Incredible RM3 Grand II keyboard action88 real wooden keys for an incredibly realistic touchFree from clutter, with a wide open surface for a laptop, mouse, or synthesizerUSB and MIDI connectivity for PC, MAC, or your favorite synthIncluded Kawai F-30 triple pedal controller for added realismVPC Editor software included for custom tweaks
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- 7 velocity-sensitive mini-keys (3 full octaves range plus 1 note)
- Modulation and pitch bend wheels
- Volume/Data knob (assignable)
- Octave/Program Up/Down back-lit, soft-touch buttons
- SET button to store and recall 4 different customized setups
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- Smart sensor keys detect pressure, velocity, and tilt with polyphonic after touch
- 2 cv/Gate inputs; Gate and 3 CV outputs (16-bit)
- Channel rotation & poly pitch bend
- Plug and play: USB powered, no drivers needed
- MacOS, Windows, iOS, Android, Linux
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Best Midi keyboard for Reaper – BUYER’S GUIDEback to menu ↑
It’s important that your controller can be setup and used with Reaper, ideally with limited manual configuration. Some leading midi controller manufacturers offer deep integration with Reaper, while others can be setup with relative ease. Nowadays it’s usually Ableton (check out our guide on best midi controllers for Ableton) and Logic Pro that get most of the attention by manufacturers building a controller around a DAW. But Nektar in particular build controllers that can easily integrate with Reaper, such as the Panorama P4 and the Impact LX49+, as well as other DAWs such as Reason.back to menu ↑
Type of midi controller
Many people see the terms ‘midi controller’ and ‘midi keyboard’ as interchangeable, but not all controllers are piano-style keyboards. Midi controllers can come in many shapes and forms, such as drum pad machines, guitars and wind instruments (all with varying suitability as DAW ‘master stations’). What will work best for you depends on what you’re likely to be using it for. In most cases a midi keyboard will be a good option, as many of the leading devices come with a range of controls in addition to keys, such as pad, faders, rotary knobs and buttons.back to menu ↑
Size of midi controller
There’s a few factors here. First, where do you plan to use your midi controller? Most people aren’t fortunate to have a big, dedicated studio space, so it’s important to consider how your controller will slot into the space you have available. Also, many people like to take their gear with them as they travel so they can get creative wherever they are. A more compact, lightweight midi controller is more suitable if this is your plan.
The second point to consider is, if you’re buying a midi keyboard, how many keys do you want? This of course will have a big impact on the overall size of the controller and how much space you’ll need in your studio (or in your rucksack if you make music on the go!). For many, 49 keys is a good number, enabling you to play chord progressions and melodies. If you’re a trained pianist you may consider a full-size 88 key device if you want to play elaborate pieces without shifting up and down octaves. For ultra portable controllers or something nice and simple, a 25 key controller may suffice.back to menu ↑
Again, if you’re buying a midi keyboard, you’ll want to consider key weight, i.e. the amount of pressure it takes to depress a key. Many keyboards are semi-weighted – built with springs and weights to enable velocity sensitivity – and this is a good option for most producers. Some keyboards have synth-action keys which are very light and super springy, ideal for playing fast leads and producer’s looking for a lightweight keyboard with less of an emphasis on ‘playing the piano’. Hammer-action (or fully weighted) midi keyboards aim to replicate a traditional piano with and usually have the full-sized 88 keys. This may be a good option for trained pianists.back to menu ↑
Your budget of course is a major factor to consider when purchasing a midi controller for Reaper. If you’re just getting started with Reaper, you’re not from a pianist background or you’re looking for something to use on the go, a budget-friendly mini controller such as the Akai Pro MPK Mini is a good option. On the other hand, if you’re a power Reaper user or looking for a long-term centre piece of your studio setup, it’s probably worth investing a bit more on a controller that has all of the functionality that you need.back to menu ↑
Frequently Asked Questionsback to menu ↑
Should I buy a midi controller or a synthesizer?
A midi controller typically does not produce any sound itself, rather it sends midi instructions to a computer or another device about how to play or manipulate a sound. Synthesizers, on the other hand, create sound and can typically output midi signals. Given this, it’s feasible to use a synthesizer as a midi controller, but purpose-built midi controllers are usually much more up for the task, due to factors such as DAW integration and their range of inputs.back to menu ↑
How do I connect a midi controller to Reaper?
First you’ll need to connect your midi controller to your computer or laptop, either with a midi in and out connection (likely via an audio interface) or with a USB connection which is more common nowadays. Make sure you’ve installed any drivers necessary with your chosen controller. In Reaper, open the Preferences menu, go to Midi Devices under Audio, where your controller should appear. Make sure your device is enabled and apply settings. This is a really handy tutorial to walk you through the steps as well as how to configure and test your device in Reaper.back to menu ↑
It is no surprise that Reaper is the best choice to make music for both beginners and professionals. However, looking for the best MIDI controller for Reaper is quite a hassle.
Even though the market is full of potential options, it is hard to narrow down MIDI controllers that offer both quality and cost-effectiveness.
More often than not, people find it oh-so-difficult to choose a MIDI controller for their Reaper because they don’t know anything about it. They don’t know what to buy and what to avoid.