Best MIDI Drum-Pad Controllers [Hip Hop Production]

MIDI Drum-Pad Controllers

A great thing about being an electronic producer, is that your creativity is allowed to have all of it’s boundaries open. You are not obliged to only one instrument, you can bang your fists against a wall, or a table and use that recording for your drum layout. Thanks to Hip Hop culture and popular“beatmakers”, the machines that are called drum-pads are the modern saviors of the day!

What Does MIDI Mean?

MIDI stands for “Musical Instrument Digital Interface”, but it`s so much deeper than that. MIDI can mean an electronically-programmed message, or data, for MIDI instruments (sound cards, mixers, pads etc). In short, MIDI by its self actually does not make any sound. It just sends the electronic signal to any MIDI controller (which can be either your DAW software or actual hardware unit; or both) which then translates the incoming message as an actual musical note.


 Midi Cables & Ports

Second, it is used in describing the main connecting specifications of the controller instrument. For example does it have “MIDI In/Out” ports. And it is also treated when talking about cabling. Therefore the “MIDI Cable.”


Midi Notes In Yout DAW

You will come across the “MIDI” acronym when you compose music onto your DAW. If you do not own any live instrument, then MIDI is all you`ll need. You just drag-and-drop the notes on the main playlist or audio editor with your mouse and you will instantly hear the music playing.


The Difference Between MIDI Instruments & MIDI Controllers

MIDI Instrument or a synthesizer can generate both sound and MIDI. It is also a standalone machine, it only needs power so it can emit its own music. The opposite to a MIDI Instrument is a synthesizer, MIDI Controller can be used in lots of different ways. In the latest days of the music industry, there are numerous examples of MIDI Controllers. From keyboard ones, piano, to all sorts of musical instruments. The best part is that MIDI controllers are mostly much less expensive, you can snatch a MIDI Controller and play any virtual instrument you like.


What Is A MIDI Drum-Pad Controller?

MIDI Drum-Pad Controller is a hardware unit that contains no other keys, but soft pads, main function/playback keys and controlling knobs. It is one of the most used musical hardware machines amongst producers. Every great producer legend and Superstar has used one. From percussion-man Swizz Beatz, Drumma Boy, Timbaland, to Mike WiLL it`s one thing a modern producer can`t go without. Even in the early beginnings of beatmaking, the only thing you could own regarding MIDI and producing Hip Hop was drum-machine. 


Top Performance Tips For Buying The Best Midi Controller

Before the main list, here are some things you need to consider when distinguishing the good. From well, not bad but less quality good drum-pad controllers. You will see different prices and hardware machines looking pretty much the same. But, what`s the catch? One of the major things in the performance specs of the MIDI Drum-Pad Controller is the number of actual pads. 


What Else Should You Look For In A Midi Drum Pad?

The main thing that drives the price tag UP, is the number of pre-installed samples. Also, some Drum-Pad machines come as a standalone. So the other types of MIDI Drum-Pad Machines or Controllers are also named Multipads, (or even Performance pads) because they may consist of only pads for a MIDI control. The ultimate Best MIDI Drum-Pad Controllers list is just down below. So besides the number of pads, whether the controller is standalone or not, has it got a monitor screen (which most standalone do), and how does it respond to your given actions.

Questions To Ask Yourself About The Case Quality

The actual shell/case quality of the controller material of which it`s made and whether the buttons feel nice and “warm”? Do the buttons light under your fingers? Or is the whole thing “plasticky” and “cheap”?

The Response Time & Size Of Pads

The response level of the pads. Can`t ever forget about the importance of the size of the pads. Some will like those small ones like on Novation`s Launchpad. Others will stick to the classic 808 drumming with babies like MPC series.

Does The Midi Drum Pad Controller Have A Sound Card?

Sound card quality, if the controller owns one it is another key feature to look for. It serves you nothing if bad drivers start messing with your DAWs performance.

Best MIDI Drum-Pad Controllers For Hip Hop Production

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ABLETON PUSH 2 

ABLETON PUSH 2 midi controller

[Buy From Amazon] Ableton Push 2 Live 9.5 Controller with Magma MGA47991 CTRL Case

 

NOVATION LAUNCHPAD PRO 

NOVATION LAUNCHPAD PRO  midi controller

[Buy From Amazon] Novation Launchpad Pro Professional 64-Pad Grid Performance Instrument for Ableton with MIDI I/O

NATIVE INSTRUMENTS MASCHINE STUDIO 

NOVATION LAUNCHPAD PRO [Buy From Amazon] Native Instruments Maschine Studio – Black

NATIVE INSTRUMENTS MASCHINE STUDIO MKII

NATIVE INSTRUMENTS MASCHINE STUDIO MKII[Buy From Amazon] Native Instruments Maschine Mikro MK2 Groove Production Studio, Black

AKAI PROFESSIONAL MPD226 

PROFESSIONAL MPD226  midi controller[Buy From Amazon] Akai Professional MPD226 | MIDI Drum Pad Controller with Software Download Package (16 pads / 4 knobs / 4 buttons / 4 faders)

AKAI MPC TOUCH 

AKAI MPC TOUCH  midi controller[Buy From Amazon] Akai Professional MPC Touch | Music Production Station with 7″ Multi-Color Touchscreen

NATIVE INSTRUMENTS MASCHINE JAM 

NATIVE INSTRUMENTS MASCHINE JAM  midi controller[Buy From Amazon] Native Instruments MASCHINE JAM Production & Performance Grid Controller

NOVATION CIRCUIT 

NOVATION CIRCUIT  midi controller[Buy From Amazon] Novation Circuit Groove Box w/ Sample Import: 2-Part Synth, 4-Part Drum Machine and Sequencer

M-AUDIO TRIGGER FINGER PRO 

M-AUDIO TRIGGER FINGER PRO midi controller[Buy From Amazon] M-Audio Trigger Finger Pro USB Controller with Step Sequencer

AKAI PROFESSIONAL MPD218 

AKAI PROFESSIONAL MPD218  midi controller[Buy From Amazon] Akai Professional MPD218 | MIDI Drum Pad Controller with Software Download Package (16 pads / 6 knobs / 6 buttons)

AKAI PROFESSIONAL MPD26 

AKAI PROFESSIONAL MPD26  midi controller[Buy From Amazon] Akai Professional MPD26 USB/Midi Pad Controller

AKAI MPC RENAISSANCE 

AKAI MPC REAISSANCE  midi controller[Buy From Amazon] Akai Professional MPC Renaissance | Music Production Controller with 9GB+ Sound Library Download (24-bit / 96 kHz)

tanja cookbeat

Producer/Blogger/Music Critic

32-year-old self-taught artist (Hip Hop producer/dj, blogger/critic, quote writer/enthusiast photographer)…. Certified Fitness Coach. Former Ryan Leslie`s “BPBC” member. Occasionally on a Composer Agreement with LA`s “Smash Haus Music Group”. Owner of online personal label “CoCo Beatz Music Group”. Certified Fitness Coach (has 17 years in recreational bodybuilding). Living for Hip Hop Culture.

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