Our Akai MPX16 Review
Akai Professional is known for producing some of the best musical equipment in the world. From synthesizers and samplers to drum machines and effects units, they are known for making reliable and durable equipment that looks great and will instantly improve the sound of most any musician.
Even their more advanced equipment is reasonably priced, which means that they are an incredibly popular company not only with professionals but also beginners and intermediate musicians as well.
What Is the Akai MXP16?
The Akai MXP16 is a sample player that is incredibly advanced and designed with pressure- and velocity-sensitive pads. It makes it possible for musicians, producers, and performers to easily trigger sound samples that they stored on SDHC or SD cards. By simply inserting the SD card and then assigning the included sounds to the pads on the MXP16, musicians can use this equipment to trigger sounds when creating music or putting together samples.
Who Is this Sampler Designed for?
The Akai MXP16 is perfect for any musician or producer who wants to include sample sounds in his or her music. Because it is so easy to set up and use, and thanks to the lower price, it’s a great option for any musician regardless of his or her skill level or budget. It’s a highly affordable and powerful piece of equipment that makes it easier than ever for musicians to sample different sounds.
Thanks to the headphone jack, users can easily monitor their sounds. They can also send their audio to their mixer for editing or send it to a recording interface. The impressive versatility of the Akai MXP16 makes it a clear option for use in the studio as well as on the stage. By using headphones with the MXP16, musicians can quietly practice without bothering anyone else in their family.
- Record and play-back pro-quality stereo .WAV samples at 16-bit/48kHz resolution using any SD card (sold separately).
- 16 velocity-sensitive MPC-style backlit pads for sample-triggering and finger drumming
- Record and trigger your own samples using MPX16's 1/4-inch (6.3mm) stereo inputs or onboard stereo microphone
- Edit and manipulate your samples easily using on-board processors including Filters, sample tuning, envelopes and choke grouping on each pad for expressive, dynamic performances
- USB connectivity and onboard MIDI interface integrates seamlessly with production and performance setups
- Powered over USB or with the included power supply and acts as an SD card reader for loading sounds over USB
While the Akai MXP16 can be powered via a USB charger, this ships separately. The MXP16 does, however, ship with a power adapter, which means that musicians can turn it on and start sampling right away.
To make sure that they get the most use out of this powerful piece of equipment, musicians will want to invest in cords to connect to monitors or loudspeakers. Since it doesn’t ship with an SD card, this is also an important purchase so that musicians can start recording their own sounds right away. Additionally, a mixer is important to make it possible to create custom sounds without any delay.
Primary Features of the Akai MXP16
The pads on the Akai MXP16 are hyper-responsive and one of the best features that this piece of equipment has to offer. Not only are they large enough to be easily pressed but it is easy to assign different sounds to the pads so that you can enjoy triggering sounds instantly. Other great features include:
- Built-in mic for immediate sample capture
- Free download of Akai Pro MPX File Conversion Utility software
- Backlit pads that are easy to see
- 1/4” inputs
- SD card slot
- USB bus power
- MIDI I/O
The USB port on the back of the Akai MXP16 allows users to easily drag and drop desired samples from their computer to the Akai MXP16 or even use an SD card to access sounds and samples. The USB connection is also great for accessing MIDI data.
The free download of Akai Pro File Loader software makes it easier than ever to manage samples that are on your computer and move them over to the SD card for easy access. This software is also able to easily convert files into the necessary WAV format so that they can be played seamlessly on the Akai MXP16.
The onboard sample processor makes it easy to edit samples. Users can adjust volume, tuning, envelopes, pad groups, panning, and sample trimming from the top-panel controls on the Akai MXP16. This is especially useful for very creative musicians who want to access and edit sounds on the fly.
Thanks to the compact size of the MXP16, it’s right at home on a table, stand, or in a backpack between gigs or when going to the studio. Not only is it small enough to be highly portable but it is also a very durable piece of equipment designed for heavy use without damage.
Alternatives to the MXP16
Musicians who need more power and control from their sample players may want to consider the Roland DJ-505. This has two channels with deck select for up to four decks and is really suited for a professional DJ. With eight dedicated pad controls, a 16-step sequencer, and shape TR drum sounds, it’s a highly versatile piece of musical equipment and a really great option for a lot of musicians.
Another alternative worth considering is the M-Audio Trigger Finger Pro. This control features 16 pads, backlit controls that are customizable and offer instant automapping, and a high-resolution display. This display makes it easier than ever to keep track of your music and make the sound adjustments that you want for the best tone and sound.
Conclusion: Should You Consider the Akai MXP16?
Any musician looking for a durable and reliable sample player will want to give the Akai MXP16 a second look. It’s designed to be highly intuitive to use, making it a wonderful option for any musician regardless of his or her skill level or how much time he or she has spent using similar equipment. Don’t let how simple the interface is, fool you, however, as the MXP16 is incredibly powerful and great for long nights on the stage or on the studio.
Any creative musician will enjoy being able to record and edit his or her sound samples with the Akai MXP16 and is sure to get a lot of use out of this powerful piece of equipment. As with all other equipment from Akai, it is built to exceptional standards and designed to offer complete creative control. If you have the need for a sample player and want something compact and incredibly reliable, then you will definitely want to consider the Akai MXP16 as it may very well be right for you.