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Learn to Use Komplete 10’s Real Gems – Those Great New Reaktor Instruments

Just because there’s a nice marketing angle doesn’t mean that it has to be the story for you. And that’s been true of NI’s big, splashy product launches. Sure, there’s the epic-looking Traktor Kontrol S8 hardware launched this week – but you tell us you might be just as pleased with a compact controller or an update to the iPad app. And Maschine Studio does wonderful things with its big screens – but the MK2 still has great pads, costs less, and fits in a backpack. And then there’s Komplete 10. Yes, NI is keen to talk about its light-up …

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NI Traktor Kontrol S8: Big Screens, Remix Controls – and Why Killing Jog Wheels is Good

Numark may have announced this week that it’s shipping the Numark NV controller, adding two displays with a window on Serato. But Native Instruments, for their part, appear no longer to be satisfied letting you hear about their upcoming Traktor Kontrol S8 via leaks on forums and social media. (Yes, uh… some of you noticed that.) No, this time, we get to see the Kontrol S8 in an official Native Instruments video. And right away, you’ll notice a big difference between Numark’s and Native Instruments’ perspective on the future of the controller: the S8 ditches the big jog wheels. Frankly, …

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$200-$250 Right Now Gets You Hardware and Full-Featured Traktor or Serato; Deckadance Solo Free

Okay, if you’ve got some old version of your DJ software, or (ahem) a pirated copy, or want to get your DJ rig together from scratch, this month there are really no excuses. As covered yesterday, AKAI is bundling their new AMX controller and audio interface with a full-blown copy of Serato DJ. The timing for Serato fans is perfect: Serato DJ finally integrates what had been a muddled product lineup (ITCH?) under a single, rebuilt product. It’s tough-to-impossible to DJ well without some kind of basic audio interface and cueing interface, so the AKAI bundle gives you the smallest-yet …

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NI Teases New Synth: Video, SoundCloud Samples

Native Instruments has something new coming, revealed today in a teaser video. And as you’ll see, it’s something new that isn’t a DJ app for iPad. I expect you’ll even see some speculation about it online. I can’t speculate about it, as … I’ve seen it. So you can instead expect full coverage once this becomes public. I did clear with NI the ability to say what it isn’t, just in case this video is unclear. This does not involve hardware. It’s a new software instrument. Beyond that, I’ll leave you to watch the video, which I must say includes …

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Inside Mostly Robot Superband: Jamie Lidell + Shiftee + Tim Exile + Mr Jimmy + Jeremy Ellis + Pfadfanderei

The cast of characters crazy enough to try this. Image courtesy Native Instruments. In 1985, Thomas Dolby, Herbie Hancock, Howard Jones, and Stevie Wonder met onstage in Los Angeles to perform a Synthesizer Medley. (See video, bottom.) Can vocalist/electronic music legend Jamie Lidell (and keyboadist Mr. Jimmy), experimental sound guru and producer Tim Exile, champion turntablist DJ Shiftee, and “finger drummer” virtuoso Jeremy Ellis pull off something that epic, backed by visuals from Berlin’s Pfadfinderei? That’s what music tech vendor Native Instruments is hoping, as it debuts the “superband” Mostly Robot at SÓNAR in Barcelona in June. Now, when you …

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Maschine Groove Box to Add Plug-in Hosting in Early 2011

Choosing a computer for production generally means choosing flexibility, the ability to more effortlessly combine lots of sound sources and techniques. So it makes sense that, given that Native Instruments’ Maschine promises to bring computer-style flexibility to hardware-style groove box and drum machine workflows, it should behave like computer software. And that has meant many Maschine enthusiasts have asked for plug-in hosting. It doesn’t make Maschine a generalized “DAW” production tool, but it could mean, for people who like the drum machine style of working, the ability to mix and match sound sources as you can in a DAW. With …

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Inside New Komplete 7, New Instruments, Effects; Player Could Change Reaktor

When it comes to software sonic goodies, loads of virtualized gear you can add to the digital, computer-based studio, Komplete is one of the deepest boxes out there. Komplete 7, announced today, is the latest edition of Native Instruments’ bundle of virtual studio software. As always, that means a refresh of what’s in the box to recent upgrades of synths like Absynth, FM8, and Massive, plus drum instrument Battery, guitar effects and amp simulation Guitar Rig, and the modular creation powerhouse Reaktor. In addition, though, today’s Komplete 7 announcement brought some new tools to the table, as seen in the …

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NI’s Traktor Kontrol X1: High-Res Traktor Controller, MIDI Mode

The Traktor Kontrol X1 is an exercise in minimalism, reducing the various uses of Traktor to a few encoders and buttons and a compact form factor. But while it supports MIDI for use with any DJ software, its “high-resolution” mode – as with Maschine before it – uses a proprietary protocol. The unit will sell for US$229 when it ships in February of next year.

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Native Instruments Komplete $399 Fire Sale; NI Noisepages Networking

Reaktor… you know, for kids! Oli, age 7. Photo (CC) Laura Whitehead. Normally, pricing announcements and sales press releases bore me to tears, but this is actually news – Native Instruments is selling Komplete for July only at just US$/EUR 399, instead of $1139/EUR999. That means if you were looking for Reaktor alone – about as good a desert island music software choice as you can find – this would be a good deal. You also get Absynth, the absurdly deep (if sometimes baffling) synth with surround sound envelopes and a workflow that could change how you think about sound, …

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Interview: Indie Sample Library Impact:Steel’s Developer Wilbert Roget, II

Composer turned sample developer Wilbert Roget, II has just released a new ‘indie’ sample library called Impact:Steel. We spoke with him to find out more about how and why he created the library and how creating his own sample libraries plays into his composition. CDM: First, can you tell us a bit about your background, and how you got into composing and music? Wilbert Roget, II:Well to keep things short, I’m basically a lifer with music and composition, studying piano early on and doing improvisations almost immediately (if not before). I decided on film and video game composition as a …

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