In addition to being a private violin teacher, Alecia started writing music-related articles 3 years ago and has been enjoying this experience greatly. Loves quilting and scrapbooking in her free time.
Marcus has a vast experience in digital audio and sound design. Thanks to his knowledge, he actively helps musicians with technical problems, improving their audio quality and even promoting their tracks so that thousands of listeners could enjoy some really good music.
Last updated: December 25, 2020
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A studio without a MIDI Keyboard is like a fishing hook without a bait. Whether you are an advanced or hobbyist music producer, chances are, at some point, you will be overwhelmed with a heavy workload on a regular basis. A mouse and a keyboard in your DAW won’t hold up to the task, and that’s when a midi keyboard becomes a necessity. As a hip-hop producer, electronic musician, or beat maker, you will need to get the most out of the FL Studio software as well as control your hardware.
But which is the best midi keyboard for FL Studio? There are so many of them out there from various brands, but only a few are up to par. Choosing one out of the many can be daunting, and this guide will demystify the process for you with reviews of top-rated midi controllers. Out of the seven midi keyboards reviewed, the Alesis V25 MIDI Keyboard Controller was the best pick overall as no other midi keyboard could measure up to its combination of exceptional functionality, durability, and value.
As the name suggests, a midi controller is for controlling anything and everything. However, for you to pick the best, you have to establish what exactly do you need. Once you know what you want out of it, you can look at a few products and check their weight, dimensions, control options, and connectivity if they fit your needs. This article will help you choose the best midi keyboard for FL studio with a comparison table, in-depth reviews of seven products and, a buying guide.
Whether you are looking to perform on stage or produce music in your home studio, you can always rely on the Alesis V25 for an excellent and dynamic performance. It is a robust and reliable midi keyboard.
The 25 full-sized keys are semi-weighted, and so playing on the V25 will feel like playing on a real piano. Its drum pads have a nice touch that is ‘gummy-like’ and not stiff.
The octave up and down buttons together with the sufficiently sensitive keys will let you access the full keyboard range so you can play different melodies, chords, and bass lines. The pitch and modulation wheels will help you to achieve an expressive and creative control in your beats.
As if that’s enough, the V25 is one of the best affordable midi keyboards for FL studio. It’s primarily all-rounded and a perfect choice for any musician.
Nektar is popular among musicians, and their products are best known for reliability and solid performance. The LX88 is currently one of their best offers.
The keyboard has a sturdy build and tight controls that work well, have a nice feel, and are easily triggered with a light touch.
Although not very affordable, it is one of the best midi keyboards for FL Studio 12, as it is designed with intelligent performance control with a range of keys. The keys are semi-weighted, and velocity-sensitive with medium tension, thus, easy to use.
This is another leader among the pack of low-budget midi controllers. Arturia MiniLab MkII offers a wealth of compelling features, including 16 rotary controls and 8 drum pads that have a great feel and do more than just trigger drums colorfully.
The midi controller includes intelligent macros for customizing your patches, and it sounds great, as well. It also features a useful selection of bundled software that integrates well with its various control options.
Beatmakers would make the most out of this midi controller because it has 16 rotary controllers and 8 multi-colored drum pads.
This is the smallest of Novation’s keyboard controllers, and although it hasn’t enough space for all the sliders and buttons like the others, its functionality is otherwise similar.
With its top-notch features, like the 16 multi-colored pads, you can play drums, launch loops, tweak virtual instruments, and control basic DAW functions. Its plastic design is not the most rugged, so it won’t hold up good if you hit the road with it too often.
If you don’t have time or knowledge for finding compatible software, this should be your prime pick because it not only handles FL studio 12 but all the other available DAWS.
What we liked:
Easy to set up
Compatible with PC, Mac, and iPad
16 multi-colored pads
What could be better:
Has no standard MIDI port
Has a fixed configuration that might not suit everyone
This isn’t the cheapest midi controller out there, but its features make it worth the buy. It is also not the best midi controller to move around with given it weighs over 6 pounds, and it has 49 keys.
The keys are full-sized and highly responsive to touch that even the default velocity curve is good enough. The 8 velocity drum pads feel and work great. The knobs also have a nice feel to them, and you can tweak their sensitivity to assess how different effects impact sounds.
The 9 faders come in handy when mixing a track or playing live. They are made with soft rubber-like caps that work well, but they are somewhat loose and short. On the bright side, they make dynamic performance an achievable dream, and that’s why this is one of the best midi keyboards for FL Studio for live performance.
Controls: 25 synth-action mini keys; 4-way thumbstick for dynamic pitch and modulation control; 8 backlit velocity-sensitive MPC-style pads with note repeat and full level; 8 assignable Q-link knobs; built-in arpeggiator with adjustable resolution, range, and modes; dedicated octave up and octave down buttons
Controls options: available with other models of this brand
Connectivity: USB-powered; no power adaptor required; works great with Mac and PC
Just like other Akai controllers, this is nothing short of a gem. It has a fantastic layout and is mostly focused on functionality in a powerful and flexible way.
It has a high-quality build with controls that work well and have a nice touch. The controller seamlessly integrates with various DAWs, including FL studio. You will fall in love with the few affordable premium soft synths it comes with.
This midi controller is such a powerhouse with so many superior features that fit into its compact size. Since it is super lightweight, it is well suited for creating or producing music on the go.
This is another compact-size design midi keyboard with impressive features. It is pretty basic when it comes to controls, but as small as it is, it features pitch and modulation wheels for in-depth sound and expression.
You will be able to cover more octaves and keys with fewer controls, thanks to its transpose and octave buttons. What you will love the most is the plug and play feature, which saves you the trouble of complicated set-ups. Beginners can benefit the most from this feature. In fact, it’s a great USB midi keyboard for FL studio.
What we liked:
Plug and play
What could be better:
Difficult to play more complex compositions
Inefficient volume slider
No software included
Things to Сonsider
If you are looking to buy a MIDI controller for FL studio, then you are spoilt for choice. There are so many of them that choosing the best one can be challenging. This guide will help you pick what’s right for you without much hassle. Before buying a midi controller, you must identify your need for one. In this section, you will learn about the advantages of midi controllers and the features you must consider when purchasing one.
Advantages of using a MIDI keyboard with FL studio
FL studio has a built-in option to use your regular computer or laptop keyboard and a mouse as a virtual piano keyboard. Though the feeling would be a whole lot different with a Midi keyboard and it would save you a lot of time as well.
Here is why you would need a Midi Keyboard for FL Studio:
A midi keyboard will make the electronically produced music not sound too synthetic or cohesive. It will give the music character which a computer keyboard cannot do.
It is hard to rely on the reflexes of a computer mouse or keyboard for things as crucial as tempo when creating an authentic sound beat.
It takes time to master your DAW with a mouse, especially if you don’t have a mouse wheel, and you need to filter adjustments.
Features to consider before you buy a MIDI keyboard
There are certain features that are a must-have for a wonderful midi keyboard. When you go shopping for one, ensure you consider all of them for you to get a highly-functional and quality product.
This is dependent on where or how you intend to use the controller. There are small or compact size midi keyboards that are lightweight and highly portable. If you want to create music on the go, these would be a perfect choice. The heavier alternatives that are 6 pounds and above can be used at home or in studios.
The size options are based on the number of keys. There are 25-key, 49-key, 61-key, and 88-key.
If you need a full-sized stage piano controller, then you should go for the 88-key, but if you want something portable, you can go with the smaller 25-key.
The small-sized controllers are highly mobile, and you can easily fit one into your backpack.
Many midi keyboards come with basic pitch and modulation controls and a few buttons to shift octaves on the keyboard.
You want to get a controller with a more complicated control set that includes rotary pots, multi-color drum pads, and faders as they will help you smoothly operate parameters in your DAW.
You would not need a mouse to mix a song, and that will allow you to play, perform, and be in control of the music software at the same time.
You need to check if the specific brand you are considering has other control options like key sets. For instance, a particular brand can have a controller with similar features, but various key games and others may not.
You should be able to connect your midi keyboard with your laptop or computer. You need to ensure it is compatible with your gadget. Some controllers are compatible with Mac, PC, and iPad.
For you to get maximum satisfaction from a midi controller, you need to identify your needs. Not all midi controllers are the same or have the same capability in terms of performance, usage, and value. You might need a controller which you can use to make music on the go, or a low-budget one or a beginner-friendly. Your personal needs will significantly determine your choice of a midi controller.
You can connect your midi keyboard to your PC in 3 ways; through a USB, Midi to Midi, and Bluetooth connection. Your keyboard might have a Midi port or a USB port. All you will have to do is connect one end of the USB or MIDI cord to the appropriate port on your PC then connect the other end to the corresponding port on your keyboard. If the midi keyboard has Bluetooth, you can simply turn it on and connect it with your computer or smartphone’s Bluetooth.
With midi keyboards, the market has a fair amount to offer, and picking the best is not a walk in the park, especially if you do not know your needs. Your personal needs are key when buying a midi controller.
Alesis V25 MIDI Keyboard Controller emerged the best Midi keyboard for FL Studio. It outdid the others in terms of excellent performance, value for money, usability, and versatility. It is an all-around product that can be used by musicians and producers of all levels.
Based on research and popular ratings, you can trust our seven best picks to be the best Midi keyboards for FL studio 12 in the market. The list has something for everyone, whether you are an advanced musician, a hobbyist producer, or a beginner.