Here’s an iPad dock with a difference. The Akai SynthStation49 is less about music playback than it is music creation.
The Akai SynthStation49 is a synthesiser with a velocity-sensitive keyboard, nine velocity-sensitive MPC-style drum pads, transport control buttons including play, pause and record, pitch/modulation wheels and a sustain pedal input, along with an adjustable-angled dock for iPad.
Record via an iPad via CoreMIDI or AkaiConnect apps, or to a Mac or PC computer via the USB port. Or use the “¼” stereo outputs with volume control to connect mixers, speakers and recording equipment.” If you’re learning to play, or are considerate about noise, there’s also a headphone jack to keep things quiet and personal.
Akai are also making available the AkaiConnect SDK (software developer’s kit), allowing third party developers to incorporate the capabilities of the SynthStation49. Plus being iOS CoreMIDI compatible, it will work with other iPad music apps.
Akai SynthStation49 release date and price
The Akai SynthStation49 has a release date of June 30, 2011. The RRP is US$399, though it will be cheaper online. Amazon are currently taking pre-orders for the device.