I have an old Tascam 1884, running Logic Studio new upgrade from a prior Sonar/Music XPC rig.
Looking to upgrade my Tascam 1884 to a Mackie Control Universal Pro, Mackie Onyx1200f (to get more Audio inputs, better Mike Pre's etc). Am also curious if anyone has found a great 88 note weighted KB that has decent control surface capability, and soft synth virtual controls.
Like the looks of the CME VX products, worried about size of company and support. Also like the new Yamaha KX series controllers (but no faders, just knobs, and not sure about tight compatibility with Logic, since Yamaha likes to 'push' Cubase integration, since they own Steinberg now).
Have a new Motif XS8, but it is still not great at controlling soft synths.
Any suggestions on the 'ideal' 88 note KB, and control surface combinations?
I just added a Behringer Ultragain Pro-8 with 8 additional audio inputs via DAT in to the Tascam. Very decent way to expand for some addtional inputs, and the quality seems good. If I upgrade the Tascam 1884 to Mackie, I plan to route the Behringer to the ADAT in on the Mackie Onyx1200f ADAT in, for a total of 20 assignable audio inputs.
If you're worried about the size of CME - don't. They were just conglomerated with three other Chinese companies and they are becoming very aggressive about expanding. That said, I had a VX6 for a while and "bricked" it while updating the ROM, which is common enough that they are actually warning their paying customers to *not* do the update except under very specific circumstances. I was writing a review for them at the time - returned the unit and haven't heard much from them since. So if you're going to worry about something WRT CME, worry about the maturity of their software/firmware.
That said, I love the feel of the control surface on their VX series. *Not* having a scribble strip is a problem (and I'm a FW-1884 user too, so I'm accustomed to the SoftLCD) but I'm sure they did that because of cost. That's why I'm looking at switching out my FW-1884 for an RME Fireface, a Euphonix MC Control/Mix unit or two (which is ultra solid and has a great scribble strip - and is relatively cheap), and probably another keyboard to replace my aging MIDIBoard some day. It might be more budget than you were planning to spend, but then again you get a *great* deal more functionality for your dollars. Also, bear in mind that tight now they only have drivers for Mac. I can't imagine that PC support would be far behind.
Yeah, I have replaced an Oberheim MC3000 and MC2000 with 2 x M Audio KS88's.
I also have analog synths, DSP synths, and VSTi samplers, and the FM8, since I needed good FM capabilities to mix with my FAT BASTARDS.
I do major mixing and tweaking of synths live, and do not change presets for my samples, but prefer changing MIDI channels for various stacks in GVI, and K2 sampled instruments.
I run a 32 MIDI channel rig that combines the best of virtual w/ the best of hardware. A Lexicon PCM91, and 81 are used via their AES/ EBU I/O's, to route into my Scope DSP projects.
I could elaborate more, but I am not in the mood to write several paragraphs.
I am a Pianist also, and won't lie, the action is far from a piano, but there are no controllers I have ever played that have that action. A real piano player can cope with several types of action, as years of having to play whatever is around teaches you. Kawai has a nice action, but lacks controls, and their piano sounds aren't worth the money they ask 4. So I can make due with what I have. Live performance is where it's at for me, I can play all of the Debussy and Chopin I want at home.