Roland has announced the A-88 and A-49 MIDI Keyboard Controllers, two all-new controllers that they tell us combine pro playability with mobile convenience. They say that the piano-action A-88 and synth-action A-49 feature high-quality keyboards along with a slim, light design that's ideal for today's on-the-go musicians. They also offer USB, MIDI, and Apple iPad compatibility, as well as onboard control of Roland's SuperNATURAL-powered synths such as the INTEGRA-7, JUPITER-80, and JUPITER-50. Here's all the details in Roland's own words...
There's no shortage of keyboard controllers on the market, but most have playability that's far below the quality found in high-end digital pianos and synthesizers. With the A-88 and A-49, Roland is pleased to offer keyboard controllers that play like pro-level instruments, giving musicians mobile convenience with no compromises. From the bedroom studio to the big stage, these controllers truly deliver inspiring playability and top-level performance.
The A-88 features 88 full-size weighted keys and Roland's acclaimed Ivory Feel-G Keyboard with Escapement. This is the same Progressive Hammer Action keyboard found in many Roland stage and home pianos, and allows users to play software-based pianos, soft-synths, and sound modules with an authentic grand piano touch. In addition, the white keys are built with a moisture-absorbing material that replicates the feel of real ivory. Even with its premium hammer-action keyboard, the A-88 is light, portable, and easy for gigging musicians to transport.
Born for mobile use, the A-49 features road-tough construction yet is extremely lightweight (under six pounds). The 49 full-size velocity-sensitive keys have a rounded shape for a comfortable touch, along with many enhancements to reduce noise and increase playability. All these features add up to a premium keyboard that even the most discerning pros will appreciate.
Both the A-88 and A-49 include many performance features, including a pitch bend/mod lever, D-BEAM controller, user-assignable knobs and switches, and OCTAVE and TRANSPOSE buttons. The A-88 also has DUAL/SPLIT, UPPER, and LOWER buttons for splitting and layering tones on its full-size keyboard.
The dedicated SuperNATURAL mode button on the controllers unlocks a host of unique sound-selection features when connected to a Roland SuperNATURAL instrument such as the new INTEGRA-7 sound module or the JUPITER-80 and -50 synths.
The A-88 and A-49 offer USB and MIDI OUT connectors, along with jacks for connecting optional expression and hold pedals. Both controllers can be powered via a computer's USB bus, while the A-88 can also be powered with an accessory AC adapter. Additionally, the A-49 and A-88 are three-OS compatible, with Mac and iOS music apps on the iPad via Apple iPad Camera Connection Kit, and a SONAR X1 LE DAW software bundle with both controllers, giving Windows users a ready-to-go music production environment.
The A-88 and A-49 come standard in a handsome black finish. The A-49 is also available in white, a perfect companion color for users of the white-finish iPad. Pricing and Availability: