Akai Professional MPK261 MIDI – Performance Keyboard Controller


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  • 61 Semi-Weighted Keys with Aftertouch
  • 16 RGB-illuminated MPC Pads with 4 banks
  • 8 Faders, 8 Control Knobs, 8 Switches
  • Pitch Bend, Modulation, Octave Controls
  • iOS Compatibility
  • USB MIDI/Power and MIDI I/O Jacks
  • Sustain and Expression Pedal Input Jacks
  • Downloadable Music Creation Software
  • Mac OS X
  • Window


The third-generation of the innovative platform, accompanying a wide-range of M-Audio & Akai-based MIDI controllers. One of the most prominent enhancements to the system is the MIDI Learn functionality, allowing you to map the controls of any VIP-compatible keyboard to VIP’s parameters, allowing you to use the ever-growing library of MIDI controller mapping for added convenience. Pad Chord Progressions are also not included, allowing you to play factory or user-defined chord progressions. Key Control modes also allow you to play scales, harmonized chords, or chord progressions for added versatility. The VIP software now includes support for an EastWest’s full catalog of virtual instruments, including the award-winning Composer Cloud subscription service. The VIP 3.0 software allows you to play virtually any VST compatible plug-in and/or effects unit. Another highly useful feature is the VIP Native Plugin Map, allowing 3rd party virtual instrument and effect creators to craft their own plugin maps for optimized VIP integration and improved workflow.

All In One Controller
The Akai MPK261 is a performance pad and keyboard controller that combines software integration, enhanced workflow, and core technologies from the iconic MPCs. It comes fully loaded with a comprehensive interface for manipulating virtual instruments, effects plugins, DAWs, and more.

The controller puts 61 semi-weighted keys with aftertouch, 8 assignable knobs, faders, and switches, 16 MPC style pads with RGB feedback, and onboard transport buttons at your fingertips. Three banks expand the number of knobs, faders, and switches (up to 24 each) and four pad banks expand the pads (up to 64 total). Plus, the Akai MPK261 is optimized to interface directly with your Mac and PC using a USB power plug and play connectivity.

Perform and Record
The Akai MPK261 has a premium piano-style keyboard with 61 semi-weighted, full-size keys for excellent natural response and feel. The velocity-sensitive keys are fitted with aftertouch for dynamic recordings and expressive performances. Octave Up and Down controls allow players to access the entire melodic range, play bass lines, piano harmony, solo leads, and more. Bundled with MPK261 is SONiVOX’s Eighty-Eight Ensemble, an authentic grand-piano virtual instrument, that lets you compose or perform with pristine, expertly voiced piano samples.

MPC Functionality
Classic MPC Swing, MPC Note Repeat, MPC Full Level, and 16 Levels are all onboard for further inspiration. With MPK261, musicians and composers can incorporate genuine MPC workflow into their productions and create with the tools that producers have relied on for years: MPC Swing lets MPK261 users obtain that tight, organic groove that made Akai Pro’s groundbreaking MPC music-making machines so legendary. MPC Note Repeat and 16 Levels make it easy to build beats and construct short melodic sequences using the MPC-style pads. In addition, an arpeggiator, with adjustable resolution, range, and patterns, enables users to explore complex melodic ideas, effortlessly.

Includes Software
The Akai MPK261 comes complete with Ableton Live Lite and MPC Essentials for out of the box music creation. Ableton Live Lite is a fluid audio/MIDI environment that enables musicians and producers to spontaneously compose, record, remix, improvise and edit musical ideas. MPC Essentials, a groove/beat production, and sample-triggering software can integrate directly into any DAW, such as Ableton Live Lite, or run standalone. In addition, it extends the power of MPK261 by adding up to 8 pad banks and 4 samples and insert effects per pad.

Free MPC Beats Software
Bring the iconic MPC work format and sounds to your computer, for free! Included with this controller, is the new MPC Beats software. With MPC Beats, you’ll find the iconic layout of the 4×4 drum sample grid, sample library browser, which is filled with 2GB of samples from the MPC Expansion packages. Sounds that defined a genre with the original MPC series. MPC Beats can be used as standalone software or a plugin for your DAW, and with a variety of Beat Templates, and a multitude of effects and processors, you can start producing immediately.

  • Sixty-one semi-weighted, velocity-sensitive, full-size keys with aftertouch
  • Sixteen RGB-illuminated MPC pads each with four banks
  • Twenty-four assignable Q-Link controllers include knobs, faders, and switches (eight of each)
  • Revamped control layout with backlit LCD screen
  • iOS compatibility using the Apple iPad Camera Connection Kit (sold separately)
  • USB-MIDI with 5-pin MIDI input and output
  • Comprehensive transport and parameter controls for hands-on DAW integration
  • MPC Note Repeat, MPC Swing, and arpeggiator for advanced rhythmic and melodic manipulation
  • MPC Full Level, 16 Levels, Tap Tempo, and Time Division assist with dynamics and tempo
  • Pitch bend, modulation, and octave controls for expressive recording and performing
  • Two assignable footswitch jacks and one expression jack (pedals not included)
  • USB power and plug-and-play connectivity
  • The production software package includes Ableton Live Lite, Hybrid 3 by AIR Music Tech, SONiVOX Twist 2.0, SONiVOX Eighty-Eight Ensemble, and Akai Pro MPC Essentials (downloads)

What's in the box

  • Akai Professional MPK 261 – Performance Keyboard Controller
  • USB Cable
  • Limited 1-Year Warranty

USB / MIDI Controller

Keyboard61 Keys, Semi-Weighted Action with Aftertouch and Velocity
MIDI Control Surfaces1 x Wheel (Pitch-Bend)
1 x Wheel (Modulation)
16 x Pads (Pressure/Velocity-Sensitive)
8 x Rotary Encoders
8 x Sliders
8 x Buttons
Performance FunctionsArpeggiator, Octave Shift, and Transport Controls


I/O 1 x USB Type-B
1 x 1/4″ TS Sustain Input
1 x 1/4″ TRS Expression Pedal Input
1 x MIDI 5-Pin Input
1 x MIDI 5-Pin Output
OS CompatibilitymacOS 10.4.11 or Later
Windows XP
Windows Vista
Windows 7
Windows 8


Power OptionsUSB Bus-Power


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