All user reviews for the Native Instruments Maschine MKI
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beatsbyclos's review"Maschine MK or Studio?"
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TreDay's review"Fast and inspiring production workflow"
I haven't had any performance issues or instability. The software doesn't seem bloated but I can't say that it feels exceptionally light, either. That said, there's no lag and I've had no problems even with projects with many sounds and patterns.
Once you start the software, you’re greeted with the biggest selling point of Maschine--The Interface. Every function related to using Maschine is accessible on the hardware with no need to look at your computer monitor. Since it’s marketed as a marriage of software with a dedicated hardware controller, the quality of the hardware is paramount. The endless encoders are smooth and the velocity-sensitive pads have a fantastic feel and are responsive to all levels of pressure. The layout is well designed, with every control placed in an intuitive location and there are enough buttons and knobs to keep page and menu diving to a minimum. I find this tactile workflow to be very engaging and there’s just a kind of connection with pressing pads and tweaking knobs to produce and arrange your songs that you just don’t get with a traditional mouse-driven DAW interface.
However, the groovebox-style design isn’t without shortcomings. Maschine simply can’t handle multi-track recording. It doesn’t even have the concept of “audio tracks.” It’s designed to use patterns of midi notes, software synthesizers, and short samples which isn’t ideal for many styles of music. The capability to cut, copy, paste, and other standard audio editing functions aren’t there. When I have a desire to write and record a guitar and vocal based song, it’s just not feasible to produce that in Maschine and I must use a different program.
Though, I call that a shortcoming, I hesitate to call it a flaw. Native Instruments deliberately avoided those features and instead opted for a hardware-software combination with a very narrow focus on features that lent themselves to immediacy and inspiration, which I personally enjoy.
The included library is solid. A decent quality assortment of various drum hits, synth stabs, live instruments, and sound effect samples. As of version 2.0 they’ve created and included a great drum synth that’s capable of recreating both classic drum synth sounds as well as some more realistic percussion. Native Instruments also gives Maschine owners a free copy of Massive which means that you can really have everything you need to start producing with a single purchase.
The sampling capabilities are a bit of mixed bag. The knob based interface for trimming and chopping samples is extremely fast, but without some of the more advanced audio editing features and the baffling lack of timestretch, you may find Maschine’s sampling a bit lacking for your needs.
Maschine is a fast and creative production environment. The groovebox design places an emphasis on tactile control and pattern based song arrangement which doesn’t work for every genre of music, but is extremely fun for the ones it does work for.
+Fast, Fun User Interface
+Good Sound Library including Massive
-Does not have the functions or interface necessary for certain kinds of music
-Sampler missing some key options
1 people found this review helpful
vsavagellc's review"The Akai Mpc Killer!"
Maschine interface is quite easy to get use to, if you've used an Mpc then maschine should be a breeze for your but if not the manual included explains everything in detail. I do wish Native Instruments would have included video tutorials as they would help those who are new groove maschines (pun intended). Now there are plenty of youtube videos out there but some people don't know how to navigate the net too well or and or are not able to stream videos online (ie some college students).
Aside from that small suggestion or gripe (whichever fits best) everything else was perfect. Not only are the functions laid out in a organized manor but the shift options and dual function commands are very easy to get the hang of.
Lastly, I loved the fact that everything could be controlled from the hardware interface: Sampling,chopping,truncating,browsing samples,transport functions etc.
What's really cool is that Maschine software and Hardware interface both work flawlessly together. Whatever is being down via the hardware unit can be seen in software in real time and vice versa. In fact they work so well you don't ever have to look at the computer screen when working and that's the work flow an akai mpc user LOVES.
I've run Maschine on a few different setups and each runs the unit perfectly. Here are my setups.
Mac G4 1.5ghz,
Delta 1010 Soundcard
Stock Ati Vid Card
Delta 1010 Soundcard
Custom made 3ghz Quad Core
4gigs of Ram
5700 (ATI) Vid Card
Saffire 6 Usb Interface
Stock Vid Card
DualCore 2.2ghz Processor
I don't run into any issues using machine with either one of the setups listed above and I've had the original unit since 2008 when I was sound designing for it. With that said you should be fine using any computer made within the time from of
2008-20 – whatever.. Unless you are a really heavy plugin user.
What I like most about Maschine is it's SPEED! This is the fastest groove box I've ever used. The time it takes to sample,chop and lay your samples across the pads can take a quite a while on a mpc 3000. When the Mpc 1000 can out it was 5x times faster but maschine is nearly instant!
I do wish the build was a little more solid, not saying that it isn't but it's really light which makes feel as if it would shatter if I accidentally dropped it or, maybe I'm just use to lugging around heavier units .
Maschines sound quality is superb they even have an mpc 3000 and Sp 1200 emulator built into the sampler. My advice is process your sound through an older preamp. You get a really nice feel with them.
If I was a new producer looking to get my hands on a groove box Maschine would be my go to unit for 5 reasons
1. It's easy to use
2. Quality (Sound)
3. It's doesn't cost much
4. Can expand any setup
5. Kills any groove box on the market (even the mpc)
2 people did not find this review helpful
ericthegreat's review"Great System."
Its has 8 banks of 16 pads with 2 effects per pad/bank/project. With the included sounds, you can compose an orchestra. I don't know of a single MPC that has more. You want 10 kicks in your project? Go ahead. 5 snares? Sure. A bank for just sample chops? Go to town. You will NOT run out of space. If you do, you're doing a lot wrong anyway. No, you don't need to layer 10 kicks. Stop it! But I do like to mix sounds that otherwise wouldn't make sense. I don't like to sample, so I'll instead create an 8 bar jazz loop complete with a full jazz brush kit, then layer it with 808's, Vinyl kits, trance kicks, etc. to make the song sound sampled when it isn't.
Its performance is amazing and very easy to understand, I have been using it for a few months now after trying it out in guitar center one weekend. I am very happy with it, setting it up and getting it going couldn’t be easier.
Overall, there is very little that the Maschine can't do that you would want it to do. Come the next upgrade that's already been announced, there is likely NOTHING your Maschine won't be able to do, but there will be tons that it would be able to do that your MPC never could or will, and for a ton less than it would take for you to be able to pull it off with software and midi controllers. The only complaint I hear a lot of now is "no time stretch" (which I don't use anyway, but a lot of people do, and the MPC can do it. But add plug-in compatibility, and you'll have it.
yoTrakkz's review"Machine is ok.."
The software was very stable, I was using this for sampling for hip hop. It came loaded with sounds and kits, but I really wants into any of them. I used all of my own sounds drums and samples. This Machine was very stable but it didn’t feel as good as the MPC does. That’s what left me in a blank spot. After messing with it for a little bit I was in love with it, but as time went on it made me miss my MPC.
I am glad I purchased this item and had the chance to work with it, it just wasn’t for me though, coming from the MPC this didn’t feel real to me. Felt more like a toy, but I can say that it’s a very professional piece of equipment. I have just always been an MPC user and its hard to switch over to different pads when you have been using the same ones for 6 plus years. This was the only model of the Machine that I have tried, I think they did an upgrade or too since then. So it could be better now, maybe I will give it another shot down the road. It connected well with the pc, but if you are using a computer than doesn’t have a lot of RAM then you wont be able to use this. You will experience Latency and other issues. Over all this product was good, just wasn’t for me.
James...'s review"Great controller for maschine"
The real strength of this controller is being able to have a visual connection between the software and the buttons you see. In a live situation this allows very fast use and a quick route to get things done. I would say that if you use maschine often at all, you MUST get the controller. I couldn't imagine using maschine without it, especially live. I would be lost. The value is pretty could. Like I said, if you are a maschine user, it's a must buy. The quality is good. Never gave me any trouble. I took it probably 20 or so shows. Recommended if you need triggers and pads especially. Just don't try to use it for what it's not. I can't see this being super useful outside of maschine. At that point its a decent beat pad and that's all.
The studio that I've used Native Instruments Maschine on is Pro Tools HD based, but also has Logic Pro. The producer who owns the studio uses it in both DAW's, while the computer being used is a G5 desktop that's more than capable of handling a lot of tasks at once. Definitely make sure you have a pretty strong system before purchasing Maschine if you want to use it to it's full capacity.
Native Instruments' Maschine is definitely up there with the best, if not the best, groove production pieces of software that I've used. When paired with the in depth and very helpful MIDI controller, you've never had more control over making your beats. There are literally no restrictions with this - only your imagination. Unfortunately Maschine has to purchased individually and isn't included with Komplete or anything like that, but even so it's certainly worth a good look at for anyone making music with your DAW. With more and more people doing everything in the box, Maschine (or something or comparable quality) is becoming highly necessary to have in any working studio environment.
Audiofanzine FR's review
I've been owning it for two days. It's the tool I had been waiting for a long time. I started writing music with machines and then switched to a PC so this hardware/software bundle wonderfully combines both worlds. It combines the ease of hardware programming (without sub-menus like on a RM1X or a MPC) with the convenience of an HDD packed with a huge sample bank.
- The hardware is conceived so you don't have to search in endless menus and sub-menus.
High-quality controller (sturdy and accurate encoders, pads on the same quality as a MPC), light and compact. This controller allows you to forget about the mouse but it can be convenient to use both.
- The software is quite good, it provides enough sound banks, effects and sampling functions (although editing possibilities aren't as good as with Battery, Absynth, and other virtual drum machines and synths with a huge number of parameters).
As a summary, this bundle offers the same possibilities as a system combining an RM1X, an MPC and a PC.
I work with a 2.1 GHz Macbook with 2 GB Ram and Mac OS 10.5.6. I didn't have any problems installing the software (it took 30 minutes, registration included) and the latency I get is between 7 and 8 seconds (with shorter latency times you can hear some noise).
I'm fully satisfied with this hardware/software bundle and I think it's a good solution (once again, it's my personal opinion and other people will prefer other controllers and software tools). You'll need other synths if you want more possibilities.
PS: I give it an 8 because nothing is perfect and the grade depends on the user's expectations.
just_blaaaze's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)" Really good!"
I have a windows 2008, vista, it works
I have a Mac Pro 8core, everything works too!
I use it for 1 week. I had an MPC 500, MPC 2000 XL and one I just tested the MPC 3000 MPC is really cool, but it became obsolete in my opinion. Maschine uses the MPC style but it is much more modern, and compatibility is huge, it can be full of things with Maschine, the controller is perfectly designed, you can do everything from lasurfac control. Maschine is intere perfectly Logic or Pro Tools. THE TEST, I preferred rather than the MKI MKII. This is my opinion, but it's blah blah, test maschine, you will see that it's heavy
2 of 4 people found this review helpful