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Akai Professional MINIAK Virtual Analog Synth

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The Akai MINIAK Virtual Analog Synth is a powerful performance and production synthesizer that empowers you with phrase and step sequencing, a built-in drum machine/rhythm sequencer, an arpeggiator, a... Click To Read More About This Product

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The Akai MINIAK Virtual Analog Synth is a powerful performance and production synthesizer that empowers you with phrase and step sequencing, a built-in drum machine/rhythm sequencer, an arpeggiator, a 40-band vocoder, stereo effects, and a virtual analog synth engine developed in partnership with the world-class Alesis synth team. While the compact, portable keyboard shines on stage, the MINIAK is also at home in the production studio delivering 24-bit audio resolution.

The MINIAK puts up to 8 multitimbral voices at your fingertips, each with 3 oscillators. You can create interesting and unique sounds and take advantage of more than 600 preset sounds and store up to 1,000 programs. The Akai synth also has 2 multimode filters, 3 envelope generators, 2 LFOs, stereo effects, and a 40-band vocoder. On top of all of this sound-melding power, the MINIAK has a comprehensive sequencer with step and dynamic realtime phrase sequencing, a drum machine/rhythm sequencer, and an arpeggiator to aid in creating the landscapes and textures you're after.

Rounding out this complete instrument are high-resolution, 24-bit balanced 1/4" inputs and outputs, and a 37-key semi-weighted keyboard with velocity sensitivity for all-in-one performance. It can also be used as a sound source for MPCs, computer software, and keyboards via MIDI.

Under the hood
A MINIAK program is a sound built from the MINIAK's internal oscillators, filters, and envelope generators. The MINIAK's more than 600 preset programs span the range of classic analog synthesis sounds. If you've heard it before, you will probably find it in the MINIAK's presets.

In a synth, oscillators generate raw sound. Their output is fed into the filters, whose output is fed into the amplifiers. As the signal moves along that path, you can manipulate the mix at several points and apply modulations, envelopes, and effects to create a custom palette of sounds.

Sound Generation
The oscillators can produce different waveform types and shapes to create various harmonic structures, which our ears perceive as different timbres. Here are some of the waveforms you can create with the Akai MINIAK's oscillators:
¢Sine”Smooth, pure sound
¢Triangle”Fuller than a sine wave
¢Sawtooth”Harsh sonic character
¢Pulse”Harmonically rich, ranging from full-sounding square wave to a sharp impulse wave

The MINIAK's oscillators can produce continuously variable waveforms, so it can can hit any point between these examples.

You can also connect external audio sources”other synthesizers, mixers, guitars, and more”using the 1/4" inputs. The jacks accept either balanced or unbalanced cables. You can then mix in the external audio sources with the MINIAK's oscillators. The resulting combination is then sent through the synth's filters and effects. A special group of programs, including vocoder, exists just for use with the external inputs.

The outputs of the oscillators, the noise generator, the ring modulator, and the external inputs are fed into a virtual mixing board called the prefilter mix. From here, the signal hits the filters. For each source, you can specify its level and its balance: how much is sent to Filter 1 and how much is sent to Filter 2.

The oscillators produce very raw sounds. To shape and fine-tune the sound, filters give you tools for dampening certain harmonics and boosting others. Filters alter the frequency content of the signal and can have a drastic effect on the sound. Each of the MINIAK's voices contains 2 filters, and each filter can be one of the following different types”each with its own character and sonic flavor: Bypass, Low-Pass: ob 2-pole, tb 3-pole, mg 4-pole, rp 4-pole, jp 4-pole, al 8-pole; Band-Pass: ob 2-pole, al 6-pole, octave dual, band limit; High Pass: ob 2-pole, op 4-pole; 3 Vocal Formants, 4 Comb Filters, Phase Warp, Frequency, Resonance, Key Tracking, Envelope Amount, Offset, and Absolute.

After filtering, the signal is fed to the post-filter mix. For each filter output, as well as a prefilter signal of your choice, you can specify a level and a pan.

In the output stage, the MINIAK allows you to apply a drive effect and add some compression, distortion, or other amplification effects. The MINIAK allows you to set up 12 modulation routes. Each of these is a virtual connection between some physical or internally generated source and some program parameter. Basically, a mod route tells the synth to automatically grab a knob and tweak it while a note is playing. Although there are quite a few sources that you can use for your mods, the most common ones involve the LFOs and the envelopes.

LFO stands for low-frequency oscillator. LFOs are not designed to produce sound, but instead to tweak a program parameter according to a looping pattern. For example, if you are looking to add vibrato, you need the pitch to continuously waver up and down. Each of the MINIAK's voices contain 2 LFOs, each of which offers rate, depth, shape, and tempo sync. The MINIAK's LFO can sync to the internal clock or any external source via MIDI.

If you hit a note on a piano, you hear a burst of sound energy as the hammer strikes the string, followed by lower level of loudness as you hold down the note and let the string ring out, which fades quickly as soon as you release the note and the damper is applied. Synthesizers model this behavior using ADSR Envelopes. ADSR stands for Attack, Decay, Sustain, and Release, and represents the different stages that the sound goes through over the life of the note. The MINIAK also has an envelope that is specifically designed for loudness, called the Amp Envelope. Envelopes are useful in all sorts of mod routes, which is why you can hook up any of the MINIAK's envelopes to any modulatable program parameter. Each of the Akai MINIAK's voices contains 3 envelopes: Amp Envelope, Filter Envelope, and Pitch/Modulation Envelope.

The MINIAK has extensive sequencing and arpeggiation performance capabilities. Arpeggios and sequences both respond to a key-press by playing a series of notes over a programmed rhythmic pattern. An arpeggio loops over whatever notes you are holding down on the keyboard. If you hold down a chord, the Akai MINIAK will generate a melody by playing each note of your chord individually. A sequence has a melody line built in so you can hold down a single key and the MINIAK will play back that melody relative to that key. Pressing another key will transpose the sequence.
The MINIAK has MPC-style step sequencing and recorder-style dynamic real-time phrase sequencing. There's also a drum machine/rhythm sequencer for the built-in drum sounds.

The MINIAK synth has a full complement of stereo effects including Chorus, Feedback, Theta Flanger (Phaser + Flanger), Thru Zero Flanger, Super Phaser, Notch Frequency, String Phaser, 40-Band Vocoder, Analysis Gain, Sibilance Boost, Band Shift, Synthesis Input, Analysis Signal In, Analysis Mix, 6 types of Delay, and 3 types of Reverbs.

With the extensive sound generating and manipulating power of the MINIAK, the sounds you dream up are as easy to create as twisting a few knobs. Creating complete soundscapes with the sequencer and arpeggiator couldn't be easier.


8 voices, each with 3 oscillators 
Up to 8 multitimbral parts with stereo effects and 40-band vocoder
2 multi-mode filters, 3 envelope generators, 2 LFOs, sample and hold, tracking
Dynamic realtime and step sequencers, arpeggiator, and drum machine/rhythm
Stereo bus effects including reverbs and delays
24-bit 1/4" balanced stereo analog outputs and inputs
37-key synth-action keyboard with velocity sensitivity
More than 600 preset sounds
Sound banks: bass, lead, pad, string, brass, keys, comp, drum, SFX
MINIAK synthesizer keyboard
VPM1 gooseneck microphone
Power supply
Quick start guide
Synthesis: virtual analog (subtractive), noise generator, FM 
Polyphony: up to 8 voices
Timbrality: up to 8 parts
Oscillators: 3 per voice with continuously variable waveshapes, sync, linear, and exponential FM, Ring Mod, routable modulation matrix per voice.
Filters: 2 multi-mode resonating filters per voice with 16 filter types
Modulation: 2 LFOs with multiple wave shapes, sample and hold, tracking generator, freely-routable modulation matrix per voice
Effects: 4 drive effects, 1 per part; master effects
Sequencing: step sequencer, arpeggiator, drum machine/rhythm sequencer, and phrase sequencer
Program memory: up to 1,000 programs and multitimbral setups
Velocity sensitive: Yes
Keyboard: 37-key, semi-weighted
External control: MIDI In/Out/Thru
Inputs: 2 balanced 1/4" TRS, mic
Outputs: 2 balanced 1/4" TRS, 1/4" TRS headphone
Controls: pitch wheel, 2 assignable Q-Link modulation wheels, X, Y, and Z parameter knobs, pattern play, phrase arpeggiator, latch arpeggiator, keyboard octave, tap tempo, program controls, data push-knob, config, store, master volume
Pedal Inputs: Assignable expression pedal, sustain pedal

Dimensions: 30"W x 13"D x 8"H
Weight: 14.35 lb.
  • Customer Reviews

Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
Akai ProfessionalMINIAK Virtual Analog Synth

(based on 6 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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Reviewed by 6 customers

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(40 of 43 customers found this review helpful)



By Mark Henninger

from Philadelphia, PA

Comments about Akai Professional MINIAK Virtual Analog Synth:

I've owned many synths & workstations including the Fantom X, Motif XS, M3, Micro-X, and the simple fact is that the Miniak, (a repackaged Alesis Ion) is the best sounding synth I've used. You can dig deep into the presets, finding whole worlds of textures. I've got every great VST out there: Zebra, Omnisphere, Albino, Massive/Absynth/Reaktor, Zeta+, Rapture, you name it. The Miniak simply & easily extracts cooler, richer, sharper, smoother, thinner, phatter, deeper etc. etc. etc. sounds. I love it.

(33 of 42 customers found this review helpful)



By Nich

from Ames, Iowa

Comments about Akai Professional MINIAK Virtual Analog Synth:

This little guy is pretty powerful. It's got a range of options that are shown just in the presets. It's easy to work and is a lot of fun. It pretty much has it all. A great find!

(11 of 13 customers found this review helpful)


it's all here!

By Relic

from cleveland Ohio

Comments about Akai Professional MINIAK Virtual Analog Synth:

I had one, sold it, kicked myself for that dumb move, but I needed the money at the time! Now I have it back. YES!!! Here to stay! The MINIAK, it has it ALL! Very cool presets and you can alter them to make them even cooler! Great drums here! PERIOD! It's well built and rounds out my collection of synths. You really don't need anything else, well maybe a good analog synth...:) It goes well with my DSI tetra, and Waldorf blofeld. BUY ONE NOW!!!! trust me!

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


Big punch in a little package

By Justus

from Portland Oregon

Comments about Akai Professional MINIAK Virtual Analog Synth:

I researched heavily before choosing the Akai miniak as the Analog modeler synth that I bought. I played all the models at Guitar Center in the synth room and looked around online for all the similar products. The Akai is easily the most usable and best sounding synth available. I love how easy to edit the various programs and to do so quite extensively and deep diving is quite easy. I love the LCD readout as opposed to the microkorg's system of using buttons. The keys and knobs as well as the pitch,mod and filter wheels are very solid. I have already integrated it into my live rig and love using it. Very rich pads, deep bases, great leads and a lot of cool electric pianoish instruments as well. GREAT PRODUCT prepare to be amazed. The Multis or splits represent some of the best performance settings stock I have heard for using the synth by itself to play a whole song

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)


the evil twin

By relic

from cleveland ohio

Comments about Akai Professional MINIAK Virtual Analog Synth:

this synth is a repackaged micron with a few more sounds and features. PERIOD! but.. it's darker, meaner sounding then the micron. it's the microns evil twin! and i like it better IMHO. buy one at GC!

(0 of 6 customers found this review helpful)


It has Roland sound patches.

By Jason LaGreco

from new port richey,FL

Comments about Akai Professional MINIAK Virtual Analog Synth:

Bought one returned it.It has the same synth engine as a roland groove synth.

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