Komplete Kontrol MK2 and Maschine MK3

A New Level Of Kontrol Over The Maschine

Native Instruments are upping the benchmark for audio production hardware. The Maschine family is the go-to groove production facilities for EDM, Urban, and DJ/ producers. NI is giving the Maschine a new lease of life with some long-awaited upgrades, cementing its powerhouse position. If you wished for more from the Komplete Kontrol line of MIDI keyboards, then hold on to your hats. They’re no longer just a keyboard. You’re looking at an all-out intuitive workstation – this is about to become the hub of your studio, and you won’t look back.

These are the facts:

NI Komplete Kontrol S49 & S61

The Komplete Kontrol series of keyboards were the go-to controllers for everything NI. Add in the NKS compatibility with a huge variety of Kontakt instruments and you had unparalleled control over your instruments. With V2 for the S49 and S61 announced, we’re about to see Native Instruments change the game for studios everywhere.

The core change that comes with the new keyboards are the two hi-def screens that sit centre stage of the workstation. Everything flows outwards from this point – so let’s start with what they’re going to give you. The screens dynamically change their displays depending on whether you’re working with your DAW, the Komplete Kontrol software, or Maschine. This means you seamlessly translate from tweaking that last mix, to auditioning Massive patches and changing parameters, to playing in that next synth part, without ever having to manually shift screens.

A cool addition to the S49 and S61 is that when working in the Komplete Kontrol software you can scroll quickly through your instrument banks on the left screen, and quickly audition different patches and sounds, so your workflow isn’t disrupted by auditioning countless VSTs.

Some Highlights Of The Komplete Kontrol MK2

A series of extra buttons have been added to replace those most used hotkeys from your alphabetical keyboard. You’ll be playing with a mixture of transport options, as well as editing fast keys like ‘UNDO’. In conjunction with the screens, and the rotary encoders the Komplete Kontrol MK2 makes the leap from ‘keyboard’ to Workstation.

The greatest addition for the S49 and S61 is the integration for major DAWs mixer sections. If you’re after a keyboard and a mixer in one, then the version 2’s of the Komplete Kontrol keyboards are going to be on your shopping list. The switching between mixer control and automation is super fast and very easy with a bank of touch-sensitive encoders. You’ll find yourself making automation and fader moves that you never made before.

The new Komplete Kontrol MK2 keyboards.
The new design for the Komplete Kontrol MK2 Keyboards.


The Maschine MK3 offers the producer everything they need from studio to stage. With new screens taken and upgraded from the original Maschine Studio, you’ll see every move you make. Add to that the updated drum performance pads, touch-sensitive encoders, and a 4 direction master encoder, there is no better way to produce music.

Perhaps the most interesting, and highly anticipated, addition is the all-new integrated audio interface. This will let all kinds of producers either slim down their stage kit, or take to the stage for the first time! The interface will handle 96kHz/24 bit audio, so you won’t be compromising on quality. It also comes equipped with 2x 1/4” line outs, 2x 1/4” line ins, 1/4” mic in, headphone out, and options for MIDI IN/OUT and a footswitch.

Snapshots Of The Maschine MK3
Some Highlights Of the Maschine Mk3

The workflow has been streamlined as well, with the addition of a few more buttons, and the removal of some shift functions. This is going to give producers and performers more flexibility, and less room for error. You won’t have to be worrying about hitting that shift button every time anymore! This workflow extends to the Maschine software, so you’re tracks are going to come out even faster than before.

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The Perfect Production Pairing

Posted by Garrick Wareham

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