Akai Professional MPK249 - 49-Key MIDI Controller Keyboard
Akai Professional are a stand-out leader in MIDI controller keyboards with the smaller MPK225 also retaining its place as one of our recommended MIDI controllers for the third year in a row.
The MPK249 lets you control DAWs with presets for most major software, virtual instruments, effects plugins and other external hardware.
- Keys: 49 full size semi-weighted with aftertouch.
- Pads: 16 which are velocity and pressure sensitive and they light up MPC style (with full RGB) - there are also 4 Pad banks giving you 64 inputs.
- Octaves: 10 by using Octave Up and Octave Down controls.
- Arpeggiator: Yes.
- Motorized Controls: No.
- Bundled Software: Ableton Live Lite DAW, MPC Essentials software sampler, and the Air Hybrid 3 and SONiVOX Twist virtual synths.
- Power: USB powered and can use an optional power adapter (sold separately).
- Connectivity: USB and 5-pin MIDI out and MIDI in, 2 x TRS inputs for expression pedal and sustain pedal or footswitch input.
- Control Hardware Directly: Yes
- Compatibility: Mac OS X 10.4.11 or later + Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP, also iOS compatible via CCK.
- Dimensions: 29" x 12.25" x 3.38"
- Weight 12.6 lbs
Owners praise it for how easily it integrates with major DAWs and for the quality and sensitivity of the Pads. They also speak very highly of the MPC features which shouldn't surprise anyone given that it's made by the same company. Expert reviewers are in complete agreement with most of the customer reviews - they rate the functionality and performance very highly. People used to complain about the faders, pads and knobs on the previous version, but those who make the comparison are uniform in stating that those are all now top quality in this version.
It's very hard to find negative reviews of any kind. The only complaints I found when reading all the reviews was one person who said he wished the knobs were lit for playing live in the dark, and another who said they wanted a PC configuration editor like the 25-Key Mini MkII has.
Overall, the MPK249 is still a highly regarded 49 Key controller.
Since we originally recommended the MPK249, more highly rated options have become available, which you'll find in our guide to The Best 49 Key MIDI Controller Keyboards.
Here's a fairly reasonable in-depth review of the MPK249: