Initial review *Android Compatible*
Reseñado en los Estados Unidos el 13 de noviembre de 2021
This is an initial review of the M-audio oxygen pro mini 32 key midi controller/keyboard.
Initial physical impression: solid build quality. Key bed is small but somehow I am not fumbling keys while playing and the keys have good travel range that starts loose and tightens towards the end and feels "springy". The buttons are all very "clicky" not mushy, at first I didn't like that but now I prefer it after a few sessions as it gives you a physical and audible cue. The pitch and mod wheels are a bit mushy but return well. The tiny screen is bright and legible, and the encoder nob has infinite spin with a click selection function. Sliders are fine, and the control nobs are fine but they are not infinite spin. The pads are okay, but just okay. I'm a drummer and these are not drummer pads. You can drum on them, but the Akai mini has vastly superior pads. They are passable and you can lay a beat down, but you can't physically roll a snare or anything with them (you can edit your input on the software for rolls/fills). The case is plastic and the whole unit is lightweight but does'nt feel cheap or flimsy. Quite solid. There is a basic USB cable included. No CD-ROM with drivers included (I miss the old days but understand), several leaflets with driver/software download instructions and a decent owners manual. Mine shipped in the actual M-audio box - not inside of another box but the keyboard didn't have a single blemish. She's a cute little thing.
Initial Function/integration: Reading other reviews, I was not excited about jumping through the hoops to set her up, but it was easy and if you have at least 6mbps download speed and a computer - it is an insanely easy and quick process. M-audio has a nice website. Make sure you make an account first and then log in, navigate to product registration and then it immediately brings you to a software download and instruction page. The newest firmware update for the keyboard and drivers and firmware updater for your pc/laptop (and yes for you weirdo apple posers *cough* - I mean users). Install the updater and download the update - both small files. The install process is as simple as opening the installer on your computer, and the pressing the encoder button down on the oxygen before and during plugging it in to your usb port on your computer. A message pops up on the LED screen telling you it's ready for an update. Then, on the installer, you click install firmware update and about 8 seconds later it's done.
Now, DAW integration is a more involved process if you want full integration instead of basic midi input for the keybed. Every, and I mean EVERY popular DAW is supported with the Oxygen, and the software download screen on the M-audio website has very clear and detailed instructions on how to setup with your DAW of choice. I have only used FL Studio as of now, so I will update after trying other DAW's. And, it did work very well with FL Studio.
Let me get one big con out of the way: the description on Amazon says it includes pro-tools m-audio first edition - and I see nothing on the website about downloading it or a link or anything at all about it anywhere. I think it was a timed or limited time offer that went out, I'm not sure. Either way, if that was a major selling point - realize that it isn't in the package anymore. You definitely get a copy of ableton live lite, which is more than great, and MPC beats is free anyway. The thing that miffed me was the VST package was through pro-tools. Oh, and if you didn't know, FL Studio has a free unlimited use trial that integrates "any" VST plugin (of which there are too many quality free ones available online as well as samples).
Parting thoughts and important extras: I feel that this is a massive value for what you pay. If you want to make loops, add music to home/youtube videos, write and record your own songs - literally everything you need is included with the physical product and ableton live lite access (which can be used to - you guessed it - play live shows). The learning curve is shallow for basic use but there is absolutely no limit to what you can do with it. For a beginner or, for people like me - a person on a budget, this is a must buy. It is versatile, has quality build and function, has a wide support of software, and M-audio regularly improves it through firmware updates.
Now, here is my absolutely favorite part about this product: it works with my android tablet and phone! FL Studio mobile, an already stellar music producing mobile app, just got way better. I love this. You can literally put down a track anywhere now. I'm not sure if it works with apple phones or ipad. I don't like apple. I also don't use Linux so I can't help you there but I congratulate you for going against emporer gates for using Linux in the first place.
If you have a tight budget and want maximum value - jump on this. If youvare looking for a gift for christmas, a birthday, for someone who loves music as a hobby or a youngster looking to get into music - this is that gift. If you love music and you want to make your own songs - please, do yourself a favor: if you can afford this, buy it, if not - start saving, download fl studio on you computer, free trial, mess around with it - it has a virtual keyboard and drum pads, or throw down the $14.99 on google play for the mobile version and start messing around with it. There is hours and hours of people that can show you how tobuse it on youtube and it rocks. Write songs, write crappy songs, mess around, fool around, mess up, succeed, crash and burn, try, fail, and try again. Don't *not* do it because you can't afford a music studio. Live your life, and don't be afraid. Follow that pounding in your chest, that pain, joy, anxiety, love, anger and peace that makes you the ONLY YOU in existence and turn it into something you can hold and hear that you can share with your family, your friends, and the world. You will only be stopped by yourself. And, while I'm at it, would you stop being so hard on yourself? You matter, you're awesome and no one could ever make anything more beautiful than you. It's gonna be okay.
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