Doepfer LMK4+ 88-Key Hammer Action MIDI Keyboard Controller

86
GEARANK

86 out of 100. Incorporating 30+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$1,849
Doepfer LMK4+ 88-Key MIDI Keyboard Controller

Meta Analysis Overview

Our rating of 86/100 is based on analysis of 30+ sources comprised of online reviews and discussions. Under the Pros and Cons headings below you'll find a condensed analysis of what those owners and users have been saying. Feel free to ask questions or add your thoughts in the comments section.

Doepfer is very well regarded in their home country of Germany, in fact this controller is used by film composer Hans Zimmer, and that reputation has expanded around the world.

The LMK4+ is a significant step up from the lower cost LMK2+ with adjustable aftertouch, 32 velocity curves, 8 zones with proportionally controllable volume and a much bigger, and I would say more practical, control panel.

To help you get the most out of the greater number of features, there is also a 3rd party freeware editor software by Michael Reukauff for Windows, however there doesn't seem to be English documentation for it.

Key Features:

  • Keys: 88 graded hammer-action Fatar T88P/40GH keybed with velocity sensitivity and adjustable aftertouch.
  • Zones: 8 overlapping assignable zones - Aftertouch (with assignable curves per zone), Wheels, external Footswitches and Pedal can be turned on/off for each zone
  • Pads: No.
  • Controls: Pitchbend wheel, Assignable whee, Rotary Knob, 2 Sliders, Pedals and Footswitches.
  • Automap: No.
  • Power: 3-pin XLR AC power adapter included and USB bus power (the USB host has to be able to supply 200mA).
  • Connectivity: 2 x 5-Pin MIDI Out, 1 x 5-Pin MIDI In and USB 2.0 MIDI (USB sends the same data as MIDI 1). It also has a 1/4" jack for volume/sweep and a 1/4" jack for sustain/sostenuto..
  • Dimensions: 61.81" (L) x 11.02" (W) x 4.72" (H).
  • Weight: 52.9 lbs. (includes the flight case)
  • Bundled Software: Downloadable 3rd party Editor.
  • Compatibility: Windows for the freeware Editor.

Pros

Having the same keybed as the LMK2+ it also gets a lot of praise from pianists with one person saying it's 3 resistance levels for each third being superior to that of the more expensive Nord Piano 88. A couple of people simply said this is the best 88 key controller they've played. Newer reviews in 2020 still state that the LMK4+ gets their vote with regards to feel.

Cons

There were no consistently reported negatives in user reviews other than a couple of forum reports of being unhappy with the default velocity curve settings.

Overall

If you want one of the best hammer action controllers that is also road tough, then this is for you. At 52.9 lbs, it is no lightweight so it may be an issue if you gig without the assistance of roadies. As a studio fixture however, it fares excellently.

Although this was previously on our recommended list, there are now more highly rated options available which you can see in our guide to The Best 88 Key MIDI Controller Keyboards.

This video demonstrates the previous version which didn't have USB:

About the Author

Raphael PulgarRaphael Pulgar

An audio engineer of 20 years who specializes in rock and metal recordings, he also plays guitar and produces original music for his band and other content creators.