Founded in a garage in Altadena, Calif., in the late 1980s to design and manufacture interfaces and syncing devices for MIDI as well as time code synchronization systems, the company then known as Midiman, and now as M-Audio, has grown to be a major manufacturer of everything from MIDI keyboard controllers to audio interfaces and reference monitors.
Springing from a software company that made MIDI sequencers for Commodore and Apple computers, their first product, called simply the "Midiman," was a device designed to sync MIDI to a tape recorder, and other early products grew out of the need at the time to synchronize MIDI Time Code with audio and videotape systems. They also developed a line of MIDI interfaces for ISA card slots, serial and parallel computer ports, the only connectivity options prior to the development of USB.
The name change to M-Audio came with the development of audio interfaces, microphone preamps, mixers and audio converters, as well as a full line of MIDI keyboard controllers. The affordability and reliability of these products spurred the company to a growth spurt that caught the attention of Avid/Digidesign, who purchased the company in 2004, maintaining their existing product lines and using M-Audio's engineering expertise to work on designs for new Pro Tools-compatible products.
Acquired in 2012 by InMusic, the company that also owns the Numark, Alesis, and Akai Professional brands, among others, M-Audio continues to develop exciting new products aimed at providing musicians with powerful, yet affordable tools.