The Vortex USB/MIDI Keytar Controller with Accelerometer takes you back to the look and style of the popular 80's keytars but beefed up with the USB/MIDI technolgy of today. A Best of NAMM 2012 Winner... Read More
The Vortex USB/MIDI Keytar Controller with Accelerometer takes you back to the look and style of the popular 80's keytars but beefed up with the USB/MIDI technolgy of today. A Best of NAMM 2012 Winner (Gear Guruz), the Vortex eliminates the barrier between you and your audience by giving you the freedom to move around the stage and take the lead. With an extensive layout of touch-sensitive keys and velocity-sensitive pads on its pearlescent white body, and radical pitch and modulation controls on its neck, the Vortex empowers you to rule the stage.
The Vortex is the first keytar to include a MIDI-assignable accelerometer. Now, you can get out from behind your keyboard stand and be just as visual as guitarists and singers with an instrument that will respond to your motion. You’ll be able to create incredible volume swells, amazing pitch bends, vibratos, filter cutoffs and more with a simple tilt of the Vortex’s neck in the heat of the moment during live performances.
Keys, Control, and More
The Vortex includes even more features never before found on any keytar: both traditional MIDI and USB MIDI are onboard, empowering you to use the Vortex with all of your software instruments and synths on Mac, PC, and iPad*. You'll have a virtually unlimited palette of sounds, ready to command with one of the most exciting keytar controllers ever.
The Vortex comes ready for instant performance, automapped for today’s most popular software synths and DAWs. Plus, you can customize and create your own mappings for virtually any MIDI software.
Breathe new life into every performance with this incredibly expressive keytar. The Vortex’s neck controls are laid out ergonomically: Your thumb controls a volume slider and pitch-bend wheel while your fingers command nine front-facing controls that include a MIDI-assignable touch strip, and buttons for octave selection and sustain. Large transport and patch-select controls are centrally located on the Vortex’s body for instant access, and synth lovers will be happy to know that the Vortex’s 37 velocity-sensitive keys feature aftertouch to enable instant creative flourishes.
These ergonomic designs were included because with controllerists in mind, those of you who want to perform without limitations to your movement or sound set. The Vortex is bus powered when connected to a Mac or PC, and can also be powered by 4 AA batteries (sold separately) when used with MIDI modules and iOS devices including the iPad. Standard strap pegs are located on the Vortex's neck and body, and an adjustable strap is included.
*Connection to iOS devices requires an Apple USB adapter, sold separately as part of the Apple iPad Camera Connection Kit. iPad is a trademark of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries.
Reviewed by 4 customers
Displaying reviews 1-4
Having used keytars in a long semi-pro career, and also great experience with past Alesis products, I had high hopes for the Vortex. I purchased one and my middle-schooler sold some of his old gear to buy his own Vortex as well. WORST, in the first few minutes of operation right out of the box, my Vortex LEDs started flickering in battery mode. After less than ten minutes total use, the unit would not run on battery at all. Googling this reveals failure here is common. Alesis (actually Numark) issued an RMA, but expected me to pay for return shipping. To be fair, when I objected they DID issue a prepaid FedEx label. Second, the documentation is abysmal, and there's no "in depth" website pdf available. They probably rationalized skimping here due to development of a computer-based editor-librarian, but totally unacceptable. Without trial-and-error (or googling other unfortunate owners' comments and discoveries) you will NEVER figure out some of the available functions. Third, the accelerometer requires a lot of tweaking so as to minimize spewing out random, spurious commands that choke receiving instruments. Fourth, the rear compartment doors are either ill-designed or badly manufactured (or both) since on both our units, they do not latch properly. A good jostle with batteries in the compartment, and batteries hit the floor. I would be more? disappointed? had my son and I paid full or street price for these, but we got them when GC started heavily discounting them (presumably in anticipation of the black wireless version). I was a LITTLE concerned that they made clear that the units would not be returnable. But GC's discount and return policies have nothing to do with Alesis? QC and documentation EPIC FAILS. Hopefully they correct the battery and battery door issues for the wireless version, since these now become critical flaws. Otherwise, Mrs. Lincoln, how?d you like the play? Seriously, aside from these issues, I actually like the Vortex, as does my son. (At least he has his ? I won?t have mine for several weeks, apparently.) Really a case of the devil in the details ? yes, I wish it had as many keys as every other keytar I?ve owned, but it?s a cool unit. Figure they?s have worked the bugs out two years after its announcement though?
This thing is really cool. I've had mine for over a couple of months and I've played it everyday. Though, it's made of plastic, it has a real solid feeling. And you can run it directly from your computer with the power coming from the computer. I'm using it with Logic and Mainstage, and setting up the pads and knobs with the software is real easy. It also comes bundled with a special version of Sonivox software made just for the Vortex, which has some cool sounds. So if you want a keytar and not spend a lot of money then I would highly recommend this midi keyboard.
I bought this keytar because I really wanted one in early January and I will never regret my purchase. This + ableton = sexyness. I cannot stress that enough. I used this with my band in a house show we played and it did great. The semiweighted keys are perfect and the buttons are super smooth and responsive. You do not need a very expensive keyboard, this is all you need right here. Handling it takes some time to master and it does have that cheap plastic feel but its not that bad. If you want a keytar, I strongly suggest you get this one.
This is a fun unit to play and makes an awesome addition to any keyboard stage set up. The keys are pretty soft to? the touch, Velocity sensitivity is about as good as it gets for unweighted keys. I would say similar in feel to an m-audio oxygen midi controller or Yamaha consumer series keyboard. The After Touch is right on. The ribbon controller works real nice like all things it takes a little getting use to so you know exactly where it zero's out at. The Accelerometer is a nice feature. and adds to your performance visuals while jamming. The drum trigger pads could use a little improvement. I would say that they don't trigger as well as I would like them to. Overall the Alesis Vortex is certainly a great keytar to add to your collection of performance controllers even if just for retro shock value.
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