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Akai MINIAK

Posted: Tue Mar 31, 2009 11:39 pm
by tim gueguen
Apparently Akai is getting back into the business of offering an actual synth instead of MPCs and controllers.
http://www.gearjunkies.com/news_info.php?news_id=3708
Personally my first thought on seeing this thing was "They might as well label it Microkorg Copy and be done with it." Of course it's not a direct copy, but you'd have to be utterly clueless not to guess what market it's intended for. Interestingly it has a semi-weighted full size keyboard. But I do wonder about what appears to be text above the keys, making me suspect the keyboard is used for some control functions just like an old Casio home keyboard.

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Tue Mar 31, 2009 11:44 pm
by space6oy
funny, my first thought was of a sirius instead of a microkorg.

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Alesis: Three strikes your out, or third times a charm?

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 1:24 am
by shoontz
Boy Numark/Akai/Alesis are really on an inspired rebranding tear huh?

Alesis Micron = Akai Miniak

Alesis Fusion = Akai MPC5000

Alesis SR-18 = Akai XR20 (OK, I'll give this one a pass because of the different sound set)


I just can't help but wonder if they aren't entering a weird grey area with future OS updates though. There was a lot of chatter on the Fusion forums a while ago about a class action suit against Alesis because of the problems with the Fusion's OS. As a Fusion owner I kind of laughed it off, but then the MPC5000 got a pretty substantial update. Ouch.

I wonder how all the Micron users are going to feel when the same thing happens with the Miniak?

Bonus rebranded product:

Alesis Control Pad = Ion Drum Station

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 2:25 am
by masstronaut
shoontz wrote:I wonder how all the Micron users are going to feel when the same thing happens with the Miniak?
There aren't any major problems with the Micron OS though are there?

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 2:46 am
by shoontz
I don't know of any Micron OS problems, but if they add a few new features that are only available to the newest customers I'm pretty sure the old customers will have something to say about it.

New features for a new product are always awesome, but if the last generation products are the same under the hood, well, that's just a huge F-you to your new and old customers alike.

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 3:12 am
by Stab Frenzy
shoontz wrote:I don't know of any Micron OS problems, but if they add a few new features that are only available to the newest customers I'm pretty sure the old customers will have something to say about it.

New features for a new product are always awesome, but if the last generation products are the same under the hood, well, that's just a huge F-you to your new and old customers alike.
By the look of the specs they're using a more powerful DSP (or just more DSPs with the same power) than in the Micron, so you can expect it to have more features. It is a new product so it better have new features. I think people would have more of a right to complain if they brought out something new that was the same apart from the case as something that had been on the market 4 or 5 years.

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 3:20 am
by Joey
do we really need another knobless VA with a keyboard?

a module would make more sense

the r3 has the best blend of knobs and playability in a small size

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 3:26 am
by GeneralBigbag
Does this mean we'll see the Akandromeda?

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 3:44 am
by tim gueguen
I wonder how you're supposed to pronounce the name "Mini-eh-kay?" "Mini-ack?"

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 4:16 am
by shoontz
I don't know what you're talking about Stab Frenzy. The specs are identical to the Micron's.

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 12:50 pm
by meatballfulton
Joey wrote:do we really need another knobless VA with a keyboard?
Based on Microkorg sales, yes.
shoontz wrote:The specs are identical to the Micron's.
A Micron with knobs that don't break and wheels that aren't sideways...cool.

Waiting for the "but the Alesis ones sound better" backlash #-o
shoontz wrote:Boy Numark/Akai/Alesis are really on an inspired rebranding tear huh?
Akai stuff has a reputation for working :?

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 1:23 pm
by JSRockit
Joey wrote:do we really need another knobless VA with a keyboard?
+1

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 2:44 pm
by redchapterjubilee
Anybody seen a price for the MINIAK yet?

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 5:05 pm
by Joey
i hope it was an april fools joke

Re: Akai MINIAK

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 5:16 pm
by shoontz
meatballfulton wrote:Akai stuff has a reputation for working
In the past yes, but this ain't your momma's Akai, (in this scenario your momma is Roger Linn). Lest we forget the faulty MPC1000 pads, and the cripplingly under featured MPC500, 1000, 2500 operating systems, (OS' that were only upgraded by an unofficial third party). I love the build quality of all of Akai's (and Alesis' for that matter) recent products, but only time will tell if they'll stand up.

My point is, that now that Akai and Alesis are part of a huge conglomerate they really need to think of their customer base as a whole. Repackaging products for a different market is cool, but leaving your other customers, (who own the same product but with a different name), to twist in the wind — weak.

Call it a Miniak or call it a Micron, but just show your children the same love. Maybe Akailesis should take a page from the Elektron handbook with their MKII upgrades: A physical upgrade, with an OS upgrade for past customers = class act.