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Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller  

Item #: 
1274115061182
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The Akai Professional EWI USB electronic wind controller is for musicians seeking an easy-to-play, easy-to-use instrument. Akai Professional's decades of experience in wind and electronic musical inst... Click To Read More About This Product

Available 02-09-2017 You will not be charged until order ships. Email me when this is in stock.

Price:
$2990.00
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Overview

The Akai Professional EWI USB electronic wind controller is for musicians seeking an easy-to-play, easy-to-use instrument. Akai Professional's decades of experience in wind and electronic musical instruments are rolled into Akai's most user-friendly-and most affordable-EWI controller ever.

Premium Akai Pedigree

For over 20 years, Akai Professional has studied the art of playing saxophone, clarinet, oboe, bassoon, and other traditional wind instruments and developed electronic wind instruments that enable wind players to enjoy the same expressive control as in an acoustic instrument. Akai Professional designed the EWI USB to give wind players the expressive musical capabilities previously found only in much more expensive instruments.

Akai Professional Performance

EWIs are the only choice for serious wind players looking to make music electronically. While EWI USB is easy and fun to use, it's also powerful, flexible, and-most importantly-reliable enough for use on stage and in the studio by professional musicians.

Computer Control

The Akai EWI USB controller is extremely flexible because it harnesses your computer to generate its sounds. Its USB interface means that all you need is nearly any Mac or PC and the included EWI USB software, and you're ready to practice, perform, create, and record with a full collection of wind instrument sounds. Aria Player software was produced specifically for use with EWI USB, providing wind players with an unprecedented level of expressive control.

Features
  • Electronic wind instrument controller
  • Easy to play, easy to use
  • Powerful, flexible, and reliable
  • Plug-and-play USB connection to Mac or PC
  • Custom Garritan Aria Player software, contains wind instrument sounds
  • Multiple fingering modes: sax, traditional EWI, flute, oboe, and EVI (electronic valve instrument) fingering for brass players
  • Expandable sound palette
  • Removable, dishwasher-safe mouthpiece
  • Includes:
  • EWI USB wind instrument
  • Neck strap
  • Cleaning cloth
  • USB cable
  • Software DVD
  • Quick start guide
Specifications
  • Sensors:
    Mouthpiece: air-pressure level sensor & bite sensor
    Note Keys: 13 touch sensors
    Octave Rollers: 2 mobile, 2 fixed touch sensors (5-octave range)
    Bend Plates: 2 touch sensors
    Ground Plates: 2 touch sensors

    General:
    Class-compliant, plug-and-play USB device
    MIDI Output Channels Over USB: 1
    Mac and PC compatible

    Hardware:
    Dimensions: 2-3/4" W x 23-1/8" L x 2-3/4" H
    Weight: 1.3 lb.
    Power: 100mA, 5V via USB
    Terminals: 1 slave connector (MIDI over USB)

    Minimum system requirements:
    Mac: OSX
    PC: Windows XP or Vista
    USB port
Warranty

GUITAR CENTER'S PRO COVERAGE
Pro Coverage gives you added warranty protection for your new gear. Stepping in where the manufacturer's "normal wear and tear" coverage ends, our Pro Coverage program offers you upgraded coverage if your product ever fails Read More.

Pro Coverage includes
  • Accidental damage protection (new gear only)
  • Expedited repair
  • Free shipping (for returns or repairs)
  • 100% coverage for commercial use
  • Extended return period
  • Extended price protection
  • No lemon guarantee
  • Free transfer of coverage to a new owner
  • Repair costs covered for up to three years from date of purchase
  • Repair authorization-toll-free by phone or via the web
  • Customer Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
Akai ProfessionalEWI USB Electronic Wind Controller
 
4.3

(based on 27 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (17)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (5)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

87%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Functional (9)
  • Good quality (8)
  • Easy to use (5)
  • Improves sound (4)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Practicing (8)
  • Recording (3)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (7), Professional musician (6)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Excellent instrument, decent software.

It's everything you'd expect it to be. It plays very well, the keys are incredibly responsive, it's comfortable, and the breath control responds very nicely. However, 1. The included Aria Software...Read complete review

It's everything you'd expect it to be. It plays very well, the keys are incredibly responsive, it's comfortable, and the breath control responds very nicely. However, 1. The included Aria Software is very quiet, and not very punchy. It goes well with the EWI, and compliments the breath control of the EWI, but it's not really suited for being in a spotlight, as it's rather soft and lacks "strength." Luckily, since the instrument's USB powered, you can go ahead and plug it in to something better (like Reason!) 2. While I said the breath control mechanism responds very well, one thing it does NOT do is respond super-quickly. There's a horn patch in the Aria software, but it's nigh impossible to make it do the signature fortepiano effect that horns do. In other words, sharp dynamic changes are a little difficult to pull off. But hey, for the money, I'm very happy.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Akai EWI USB

Pros: Fun to play with, lots of instrument sounds, good idea, stationary (theoretically more durable) keys and less expensive than the Yamaha

Cons: Octave rollers difficult to manage,...Read complete review

Pros: Fun to play with, lots of instrument sounds, good idea, stationary (theoretically more durable) keys and less expensive than the Yamaha

Cons: Octave rollers difficult to manage, pitch bend not intuitive to use, hard to hold the instrument without inadvertantly touching trill keys or the pitch bend plates, and (in my case, at least) early failure.
As a former sax player , now playing bass/guitar, I thought it would be fun to have a variety of woodwind instruments to play without having to buy them all. The EWI USB seemed just the thing.

It was fairly easy to learn to finger (using the sax fingering setting), and was fun to play. The octave rollers took some getting used to. The pitch bend plates were less than adequate - not similar enough to the embouchure method for bending pitch.

There are plenty of instruments and variations to play with. Imagine playing a violin or a doublebass using sax fingerings!
Even after playing with it for several months, I could never get the tonguing to work rapidly enough to consider performing with it. Now, it is having some kind of problem converting the fingerings to the correct pitches - it will only produce 4 pitches, each a half-step apart, and the octave keys work backwards (high produces low and vice-versa).

Evidently this thing has fried itself just sitting on my shelf for couple of weeks. Not a happy ending to this experiment.
Obviously, having a moderately expensive instrument fail after only a few months of use is disappointing. Had it continued to work, I could have rated the value as a 6 or 7.

Reviewed by 27 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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4.0

ewi

By Keith

from Michigan

About Me Novice

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy To Use
  • Functional
  • Good Quality
  • Improves Sound

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Practicing

    Comments about Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller:

    I like it.

     
    5.0

    Like having a real instrument, just as tough as learning 1.

    By Double G

    from Gilbert,AZ

    About Me Novice

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Functional
    • Good Quality
    • Improves Sound

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Practicing

      Comments about Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller:

      Difficult to use if you don't know how to play a wind instrument. the software is simple and awesome. can layer sounds to create something unique. This was a great buy.

       
      5.0

      Great Controller

      By Altbouch

      from NYC

      About Me Professional Musician

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Functional
      • It Tracks Flawlessly

      Cons

      • Takes Some Practice

      Best Uses

      • Recording

      Comments about Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller:

      The buttons don't move and they are laid out differently. Took some getting used to but it makes a great controller for recording. Also good for practice late at night. For programming horn parts it give you articulation you simply not get from a keyboard.

      (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      3.0

      WEEE-EW EWI USB!

      By Monk E. Mnd

      from San Antonio, Texas

      Comments about Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller:

      The GUI is not very user friendly (knobs are difficult to turn with a mouse), but there is a skin available that fixes that.GIYF!

      The real problem is that if you don't have one of the latest CDRW's you will likely not be able to install it as the CD provided will not be recognized on a PC. Works fine with a MAC.

      Neither Musician's Friend, AKAI, nor the makers of the SW will be able to help you with this.

      You need to use a newer CDRW and burn yourself a new disk, or backup to a thumb drive. I went to a Big Box store, but they charged too much for data conversion. I tried a few of their latest laptops and found one that would recognize the CD ROM SW disk, then copied it onto my thumb drive.

      Back home I was easily able to install the AKAI EWI USB SW and was up and running without any other problems.

      AKAI really needs to fix this problem with their multi partitioned CD RM.

      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Great buy!

      By Andrew

      from New York, NY

      About Me Experienced

      Pros

      • Easy To Use
      • Functional
      • Good Quality

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Backup
        • Practicing

        Comments about Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller:

        I always thought the EWI was super cool from watching videos and listening to recordings, but it mostly just a novelty item in my mind. When I finally bought the EWI USB, I had a lot of fun playing around with the different sounds (even though I'm still working on getting used to the fingerings). To my delight, the EWI has actually come in very handy for me. I am now able to get some practice time in late at night (with headphones) when I might have been busy all day. Also, when I busted my lip, I was still able to get some practice in with the EWI because it doesn't sacrifice sound for a less strict embouchure. So in conclusion, I am a sax player and the EWI will never REPLACE the horn. BUT it's great as a practice aid and definitely a lot of fun to play.

         
        5.0

        Excellent for the price

        By Woolyloach

        from Austin, TX

        About Me Experienced

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Functional
        • Good Quality
        • Inexpensive

        Cons

        • Finicky Fingering
        • Included Software So-so

        Best Uses

        • Home Recording
        • Practicing

        Comments about Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller:

        I played woodwinds back in high school, so when I saw this on sale here at Musicians Friend, it was a no-brainer. Good quality, a nice heft without being too heavy. It takes some getting used to if you're used to moving keys, and the embouchure is quite different as the air doesn't pass through the body much (you have to let the air out the sides of your mouth). It's finicky about touch, you have to hold it *just right* or it'll produce unwanted sounds. This is to be expected on this kind of instrument.

        The only downside: the Aria software that comes with it is almost hopeless out of the box, but you can download an update and all will be well. On my laptop I use the DirectX audio option, no pops/crackles/delays at all.

        Overall, I'm very happy with my EWI USB.

         
        5.0

        Great Controller for the Cost

        By Desertmountaingirl

        from Green Valley, AZ

        About Me Professional Musician

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy To Use
        • Functional
        • Good Quality

        Cons

        • Miss The 2 8ves Of 4000s

        Best Uses

        • Live 9
        • Xpression Dynasampler

        Comments about Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller:

        Great wind controller. Lacks the additional 2 8ves available on the EWI 4000s, yet for most live performance situations, this one does the job and works great, especially when used with an Xpression Dynasampler tone generator. Can't beat the price from Musician's Friend....you can buy two and save one to use as a back up for the price you would pay at some of the other music online retailers. Never have had any issues with Music 123 for their customer service...So go for it and enjoy the incredible wild ride of discovering the unlimited possibilities of making music with an EWI.

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Exceptional with right synth - REVISED

        By sweebach

        from north carolina

        About Me Experienced

        Pros

        • Great Instrument

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller:

            Aria packaged software - OLD INFO: great timbre but slow response, not much change when customizing midi controllers --- UPDATE: switched to ASIO and much faster response . . . also you need to select EWI USB as OUTPUT (as well as input) for customizing midi controllers

            Cakewalk Dimension - OLD INFO: much quicker response, great library, but so far not too many (no timbre change) expression options --- still looking here UPDATE: Discovered "midi monitor" which allows custom setup of MIDI CC --- many many creative options, wow . . . great synth

            Roland JV-1010 - OLD INFO: (using Cognitone's EWI-USB Control) Exceptional expression (timbre, modulation, fx) on some voices (chamber woods, horn swell) using custom midi controllers, quick response, expect to spend most of my time here UPDATE: still my favorite, but cognitone will not set up pitch bend at thumb plate (must be done in aria)

             
            5.0

            Exceptional with right synth

            By sweebach

            from north carolina

            About Me Experienced

            Pros

            • Customizable
            • Expression On Good Synth
            • Fastresponse W Good Synth

            Cons

            • Adjusting To Windage
            • Packaged Software Slow

            Best Uses

            • Jamming
            • Performing
            • Recording

            Comments about Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller:

            using with:

            Aria packaged software - great timbre but slow response, not much change when customizing midi controllers

            Cakewalk Dimension - much quicker response, great library, but so far not too many (no timbre change) expression options --- still looking here

            Roland JV-1010 - (using Cognitone's EWI-USB Control) Exceptional expression (timbre, modulation, fx) on some voices (chamber woods, horn swell) using custom midi controllers, quick response, expect to spend most of my time here

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            EWI 4000S

            By Vitte

            from NYC

            About Me Professional Musician

            Pros

            • Change With The Ewi Is Go
            • Good Quality
            • Improves Sound

            Cons

            • First Ewi External Module

            Best Uses

            • Practicing
            • Recording Practicing

            Comments about Akai Professional EWI USB Electronic Wind Controller:

            I liked the ability of creating settings with my first EWI I own and still play. The external module had chord patches and tuning and transposition was easier. These 2 aspects are harder on the 4000S with the 2 upper left fingered white oval buttons. You still have to keep your thumb on the lower right metal screen and it is hard to negotiate the 2 oval buttons with your left finger. The 4000S is nice to record and practice, keeping it in your music room next to your computer. The portability excites everyone and is easier for using daily, no setting up. Just practice and record. The first EWI felt like you had a saxophone in your hands. Mobility speaking, it was closer to playing a real sax than the 4000S. The 4000S sounds as good, but the right double lights for your right knuckles, the right thumb screen, the programming playing live, was easier with the original. You do not have all these alternate mechanisms to program while you are playing with the 1st EWI. This effects your feel of the plane of the real saxophone.
            Also, the 1st EWI had a hole on the side of the mouthpiece. I wish they would create a replacement mouthpiece for the 4000S like the original. This hole allowed you to blow naturally and it was easier to set up the resistance of blowing like your reed/mouthpiece combination on your real saxophone. In everything I mentioned, the 2 most important changes that I wish were not changing the older mouthpiece with a truer resistant of your reed, less mechanisms, feeling like the plane of your fingers on a real sax.
            I still use the older version for gigs. No change in sound at all. You are the one that creates the expression with your breath. The older mouthpiece with the side hole felt real and better. My original tag: Sometimes change is not always the best. Perhaps modifying what you have already is better.
            Vitte

            Displaying reviews 1-10

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