• Martynas Gee

    The ultimative Controller for Ableton Live – the APC 80 built of Akai APC 20 and Akai APC 40 by delamar the german online magazine. 

  • DJ mV

    Anyone know how this will behave on a USB hub? I want to use this with Serato/ the bridge, but I’m out of USB ports so I would have to use a hub.. I appreciate the your feedback.

  • Enzo

    Any idea how hard it’d be to map this big toy so I can use it with Traktor? 

  • Enzo

    Any idea how hard it’d be to map this big toy so I can use it with Traktor? 

    • Fauxdubstep

      Look up The Thrillseeker, i know he has a .tsi file built around using this with Traktor

  • Rohan B01

     is this unit 220 volt switchable 

  • Sindrome_vato

    sweet..!! thanx!!!

  • hom1

    awesome , thx

  • http://mikemsa.tumblr.com MIKEMSA

    Is there anyway to make the fader more sensitive in Live 8? I desire trying to chop up some clips turntablist stylie..
    Yes, the fader is not very good feeling, that’s for sure but i don’t think i want to spend a whole pile of money to get a better one, for something i will use only a little. That’s what i have my 909 for..

    Ideas?

  • dj ROLi

    Just want to add my 2 sense. Was looking for a midi controller for Traktor Pro. And found the APC 40. The APC 40 was made for Ableton LIVE. But I mapped it for Traktor Pro and it’s FLAWLESS!!! It superbly does the job and then some. And the best part??? I didn’t spend a lot of cash. Talk about more bag for the buck.

    Thanx Akai

  • RO^CH SOUNDS

    CONTEMPLATING ON GETTING ONE..A XONE 1D IS LIMITED WITH ABLETON..

  • ManDingo

    [quote comment="33297"]The APC40 should be available für 299 US dollar? So im from germany. The APC40 still costs here 399€ (about 500 Dollar).
    Do someone know when the price in europe/germany will fall?[/quote]
    No, but if you want, send me the money and I’ll get you one…here, in America, for a berry berry gut price!!! LOL!

  • Mathew S.

    The APC40 should be available für 299 US dollar? So im from germany. The APC40 still costs here 399€ (about 500 Dollar).
    Do someone know when the price in europe/germany will fall?

  • Yodhan

    I am currently using an APC40 and am getting an APC20 to use as well. I have been working on a live setup where I have a multitude of clips that I trigger to make a song live. When I saw the integration of multiple APC’s, I realized I could finally get my rig the way I want. I plan on having an APC40 with an APC on the right hand side of it. The idea is to have the grid area act as two different ‘decks’. I already have the knob section of my APC40 remapped so that the knobs are dedicated to EQ and various DJ-like effects. With the both of them, I can have two grid areas of songs set up and use the crossfader to go between them.

    I agree with most of the previous posters that remapping the knobs makes the APC a great piece of gear if you take the time.

  • eliteg

    [quote comment="31622"]@Priscilla:

    is it feasible to change his “metronome lock” to a “master select lock” within the script? just wondering how much you’ve messed with it since that’s the only thing I would need.

    i’ve spent many months crafting my live set (64 tracks wide with dummy clips) and changing the layout right now would just about kill me. the one button i’ve left blank is the master select button, so i’d rather have no lock at all then to have to change my whole layout again to work around his script. really appreciate your help and super tempted though![/quote]

    Is that a complicate dj liveset? Any ideas where to get a cool template?

  • math

    [quote comment="31423"]Is it mappable with Traktor as a regular MIDI controller?[/quote]

    yup!

  • RCUS

    @Priscilla:

    is it feasible to change his “metronome lock” to a “master select lock” within the script? just wondering how much you’ve messed with it since that’s the only thing I would need.

    i’ve spent many months crafting my live set (64 tracks wide with dummy clips) and changing the layout right now would just about kill me. the one button i’ve left blank is the master select button, so i’d rather have no lock at all then to have to change my whole layout again to work around his script. really appreciate your help and super tempted though!

  • http://web.me.com/jasonking8/J450N_N4ME/MU51C/MU51C.html J450N N4ME

    I got one last summer EXCLUSIVELY for using with TRAKTORPRO. I still can’t get the LEDs to behave but I love this thing! I agree that it takes about a year to map properly because it is so physically different from the GUI on TRAKTORPRO. I run all 4 FX banks, 40 hotcue buttons, and 4 decks simultaneously. I’m really a moron about my controller, I don’t like to play with modifiers or pages- I want everything available to me all at once at all times…the APC40 gave me that. I have really improved my mixing skills because of the folks over at AKAI. Oh, BTW- I went to see Nick Warren and Dave Seaman this year in Miami at the Winter Music Conference, guess what controllers they were using……..yup APC40.

  • Giedrius

    Got an APC40 for free and happily gave it back after a few days.. It’s heavy and large so if you travel a lot should consider something lighter and smaller.. Akai tried to kill a few birds with one stone and IMO missed them all.. For a serious live set you’ll find limitations in almost every way and a perfect example is the crossfader.. The thing is HUGE and midi is limited.. Everybody is using Live differently and a combination of controllers is a way to go or building something custom.. APC20 looks better but I prefer Launchpad or 2.. Surely soon enough iPad will get some good code for modular Lemur style apps so don’t spend 400$ on the APC…

  • http://turntablepoetry.com dj professor ben

    [quote comment="31461"] So if you’re on mac and want to try a map that isn’t sketchy and always updates properly, drop me a line.[/quote]drop a line where? ;) I’m in! djproben at gmail.

  • Priscilla

    [quote comment="31466"]i love my APC40.

    H O W E V E R….. from day one the single most bothersom thing about it, is that they never put a “lock device to current control surface” button, for the device control section, anywhere on the controller. on top of it, that function is NOT custom mappable at all in Live. This was a great feature of the Novation Remote SL series that somehow was overlooked by the Abes and Akai.

    i’ve tried so many workarounds for this and nothing works. Simply put, I want to make the “master” buttonn be a “lock device to current control surface” button. so when it’s lit, the current device is locked down and you can bounce from track to track without the device control updating like crazy. and when it’s not lit you can navigate your devices as usual…..and don’t even suggest the userscript.txt file. it’s utter crap.[/quote]

    Not sure what you are suggesting, but if you mean that when you launch a clip in a different track that the device controls jump to that, then go to prefs/record/earp/launch, then launch uncheck select on launch. that will lock in what track or device you are in.

    To take it further download this free scrip for the apc40 http://remotescripts.blogspot.com/

    they have a feature for a device lock see here http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_j9zS9x1UVfc/S-yu3Q7e0jI/AAAAAAAAALI/dae3MbgQLEI/s1600/apc40_20.jpg

  • RCUS

    i love my APC40.

    H O W E V E R….. from day one the single most bothersom thing about it, is that they never put a “lock device to current control surface” button, for the device control section, anywhere on the controller. on top of it, that function is NOT custom mappable at all in Live. This was a great feature of the Novation Remote SL series that somehow was overlooked by the Abes and Akai.

    i’ve tried so many workarounds for this and nothing works. Simply put, I want to make the “master” buttonn be a “lock device to current control surface” button. so when it’s lit, the current device is locked down and you can bounce from track to track without the device control updating like crazy. and when it’s not lit you can navigate your devices as usual…..and don’t even suggest the userscript.txt file. it’s utter crap.

  • apc 40

    I like the apc 40. That being said I do have to agree that when working in a natural light area it is harder to see the lite buttons. Also the crossfader is garbage.

    Unless you just feel the need avoid the apc 20 at all cost. You can download a free python script on the ableton forum done by Hanz that allows the apc 40 to have the same note mode that the apc 20 has.

    If you are only using it to control ableton this is the way to go. IF you need to control other apps get a mononome or the ohmn 64 livid device.

    I’ve had the apc40 pretty much since day one and have been dragging it around and banging the crap out of it. MUCH better than the LP in my opinion.

  • Mexi Nuñez

    I’ve just purchased my APC 40 and it’s amazing, i really belive that the strength is in Ableton, but working with APC 40 makes things very comfortable, greetings from Mexico, jejje

  • Zac Kyoti

    I’d like to reiterate what some have said about BANG for your BUCK. As far as midi controllers go, this is it. Completely disagree with comments about bad build quality. This thing is smooth, and reliable. There’s a lot of tricks and not readily apparent midi messages you can send the APC40 to get it to have custom behavior with the led rings. For anyone who is serious about exploiting it’s potential but don’t want to shell out for M4L, I would highly recommend using Bomes MT. With that program, you are completely unlimited as to how to build your custom interface.

    Darren’s work is great, you should check it out. Also if anyone is interested, I’m beta testing my hybrid Traktor/Live/Bomes APC40 rig right now with those who show interest. Both programs run together synced, the interface switches between Traktor control and Live control, and in Live mode the native bi-directional communication is maintained. Basically you get a custom user map for Traktor and the automap functionality for Live, either accessible by a shift-press. Four Traktor decks, full gain/eq/fx control, and four Live tracks. I’m currently building a drum machine step sequencer into the rig too. I’m a fanatic about proper led feedback as well. So if you’re on mac and want to try a map that isn’t sketchy and always updates properly, drop me a line.

  • Ian T

    *two extremes. (ie: A & B)

  • Ian T

    I’ve got one and I love it.
    An awesome piece of hardware for anybody who likes to do live looping and controlling effects.

    I’ve been using the crossfader a lot and have found it’s a bit rough at the to extremes. It does seem rather sturdy though.

    You could cram in another fader. (Inno would fit with some case dickery.)

  • Priscilla

    [quote comment="31454"]I’ll be releasing a full ableton template that utilises Max4Live to maximise the usage of the APC40…

    For example you can use the send c bank to control 8 different sends or 8 different parameters across all 8 tracks….

    more details on my blog thestudiosessions.co.uk

    Cheers
    D[/quote]

    Hey D, if you need a designer to help customize the interface let me know I’m starting to work with interface design.

  • http://thestudiosessions.co.uk Darren E Cowley

    I’ll be releasing a full ableton template that utilises Max4Live to maximise the usage of the APC40…

    For example you can use the send c bank to control 8 different sends or 8 different parameters across all 8 tracks….

    more details on my blog thestudiosessions.co.uk

    Cheers
    D

  • http://www.soundcloud.com/ninjaontherocks NinjaOnTheRocks

    I am currently using an APC40 and Novation Launchpad. I tried to use the APC40 with traktor, but it proved to be too unstable for actual show usage with the available mappings on the internet. This forced me to get to know Ableton better and definitely resulted in smoother mixes. The only thing I really miss about traktor is the effects. As for the Launchpad, it is great for on the go. I can take it anywhere and not really have to worry about weight or space. My main gripe about the lauchpad is accidentally launching clips while trying to adjust the volume. That being said, check me out on soundCloud via my link above. :)

  • http://www.digitaldjtips.com Phil Morse

    Ableton is getting more and more interesting for me. As a VCI-300 / Serato ITCH DJ I am looking forward to Serato Bridge for DJing Ableton tracks out as I don’t like the idea of compromising my tiny kit requirement for gigs, but I have a sneaky suspicion that once I get my head around it all a controller like this won’t be far behind… happy times ahead!

  • http://www.djtechtools.com markkus

    [quote comment="31415"]They do work with the latest version of Live 7, quite nicely I might add :D[/quote]
    Thanks. I updated this to reflect that the APC40 does support the latest update of Live 7. Akai’s info still states that the APC20 needs Live 8 to work. I don’t have Live 7 anymore in order to test it, so thanks for the comment.

  • http://www.djtechtools.com markkus

    [quote comment="31427"]Nice review! When you say the Xfader is replaceable, do you mean with another factory fader or can you fit an aftermarket fader in there (like a Pro X Fader or Inno Fader)?
    ..
    Phil.[/quote]

    Here are stats on the APC40 crossfader, courtesy of the Denver Ableton User Group. It sounds like it’s a proprietary replacement, but that hackers are working on building a better one.
    Details on APC40 crossfader:
    Fader Throw: 45mm
    Resistance: 10k
    Taper: Linear (B-type)
    Connector
    Pin1 – Fader Top
    Pin 2 – Wiper
    Pin 3 – Fader Bottom
    Pin 4 – Do Not Connect
    Pin 5 – Do Not Connect
    Pin 6 – Do Not Connect
    Circuit Diagram
    1 -/\/\/\/\- 3
    ^
    |
    2

  • http://urbstar.com URBSTAR

    The APC40 IS SOLID…..for 200-300 street price

    [quote post="6176"]THE BAD: The large number of backlit buttons necessitates an included AC adapter, rather than USB bus power. Although the APCs can be mapped to other software, Akai has no intentions of releasing MIDI templates for any software but Ableton Live.[/quote]

    The APC40 IS SOLID….. Just like everything else someone will find flaws. People feel the buy a controller and its supposed to do everything they individually want out the box. Take The days or weeks or( in my case and all my friends) months and create your own midi mappings for your own work flow. Simple if your gonna use Live,Traktor or any other daw/dvs learn how things work instead of copying and complaining. I got my APC40 for 220 on craigslist.org. This is the best controller period on the market for the money. Knobs,faders,sliders,buttons, A Monome Grid. Every thing I wanted ONCE I MAPPED IT MYSELF TO SUIT MY NEEDS AND STYLE. Use your mind and take the time to use the tools you have in the most efficient way that will allow control over what you use to MAKE MUSIC. I can map traktor to a usb numeric keypad that will control everything the same as a X1.

  • Full Stop

    I use my APC 40 for every live show I do. The one thing I wish was an option is proper 100mm faders. The cheesy ones on the unit are easy to over/under shoot with.

  • http://cargocollective.com/djlys jacob Lysgaard

    You really need to mention the scripts by nativeKONTROL, they multiply the functionality of the unit many times over.
    I’m working on a huge blog post on my own integration of APC/Ableton/nativeKONTROL, I’ll shout about it then.

  • http://djnsm.com/?djtt DJNSM

    Had an ACP40 since day 1 (May 30 2009). They are starter units and cause problems professionally/live.

    Can not see lights/LEDs in room light or brighter.

    MIDI channel hog – each vertical is an independent MIDI channel (about 10 channels used) so get ready to re-map anything else around this unit.

    Quality is SUPER DOOPER LOW! This is your standard Chinese “print on PCB”. Low qual pots and sliders and the form factor wastes a ton of space.

    This unit is the (often) required step in understanding what you need to get for a real performance. Plan on either replacing the unit with another or something of a higher quality build.

    More : The MIDI mapping IS not editable and this is a serious bummer. Most of the fun tricks in Ableton/Similar require a greater level of control leaving this unit as a “UI Mirror” and not much else.

    Oh, the x-fader. Forget about it. SUPER laggy an pretty worthless (I replaced mine with a knob). Also – the x-fader is 1/2″ from the stop button – so if you ever actually try to use it remap those buttons or plan on killing a set as you hit stop by accident. (I have specs to mod the x-fader – http://abletondenver.com/akai-apc-40-crossfader-specifications/ – it is a total piece of junk Alpha brand 10k linear pot – $1.50 part)

    Don’t forget to remap the metronome track to a dead clip also !liability!.

    Only 2 CC’s avail (super limiting for mapping) via the foot controller jacks(!) on back. Other wise all note values and that is such a killer weakness.

    But with some hacking you can do weird sh!t. http://apc-step.djnsm.com/ There’s a step sequencer / demo I built. Better know your MIDI to work around the APC limits.

    As for bridge – I am betting on a similar product to Max for Live – buggy, crashes, and a liability anywhere but your mom’s basement. Last night a standard M4L patch killed many hours of work b/c the (stock) patch would not let Live load/recover so that work is lost.(poof)

  • http://soundcloud.com/electrolight Electrolight

    jesjesjesjesjesjesjesjes! I like!
    I finally experience the so famous ‘djtechtoolsartikel thats there just at the right moment’ phenomenon! I was breaking my head over if I should buy the apc40 or apc20

  • Santiago Páramo

    And for those who use Scratch Live don’t forget about The Bridge. (that hopefully will be out soon)
    I look forward to buy me an APC40 and start using it on my DJ sets once the Bridge is finally released. It will mean absolutely control on everything I play and how I play it, and I can’t wait to see other people using it to learn and collaborate with them. It will be very interesting playing a DJ set with another DJ, both using APCS and been able to interact with live instruments, I guess that’s one of the things that excite me the most about this. Let’s see those inspirational videos from you all but most importantly, great music to listen and dance to.

  • http://soundcloud.com/re8 re8

    [quote post="6176"]The APCs will not work with versions older than Live 8,[/quote]Read Akai site, you did not.[quote]Live 7 with the latest automatic update has full support for the APC40[/quote]http://www.akaipro.com/apc40

    Thanks for the link to nativeKONTROL! CDM has some nice links to soft-hacking the APC40 also: http://createdigitalmusic.com/tag/apc40/
    Does anyone have links to hardware-hacking please? :)

  • pilmat

    Nice review! When you say the Xfader is replaceable, do you mean with another factory fader or can you fit an aftermarket fader in there (like a Pro X Fader or Inno Fader)?
    ..
    Phil.

  • http://www.myspace.com/electrometro red

    Sup guys, very nice review but, i disagree with something althougt the APC series are made for Live, i bought mine for two reasons, first i use Ableton live with my band for producing but also because i wanted a controller with many knobs and buttons to use them with Traktor Pro.

    It took me a long time to make a good mapping for it but its worth it, you get tons of leds, light encoders and more and you can take advantage of all that and use in many ways you shoudnt expect.

    I got the two sides of the coin only for 400$ was a bargain.

    Overall i think the apc40 is a shure deal for the price now day much more ´cause of the price drop.

  • Vinícius Hoffmann

    [quote comment="31423"]Is it mappable with Traktor as a regular MIDI controller?[/quote]
    Yest it is, APC is a regular midi controller :)
    We have some user mappings at the DJTT Controller Mapping forum, check it out!

  • http://soundcloud.com/groups/fleater Pete

    A nice new competitor with note mode is the Livid Ohm64. It also has a very nice mapping script
    http://blog.lividinstruments.com/forum/topic.php?id=1157
    No requirement for external power
    Transferable and re-maple everything!

    Good article tho!

  • JelaniRobot

    Is it mappable with Traktor as a regular MIDI controller?

  • Carmai

    Can’t resist all the blinkies, most have flashy lights!

  • http://soundcloud.com/thebrooklynknockout the Brooklyn Knockout

    I LOVE MY APC 40 !!! .. check out some of my mixes on my link !! =)

  • Glen

    Nice review… Hopefully you kept one of em, i would have been all over them

  • http://www.Soundcloud.com/Nick-fury Nick F.M

    @Miguel from what I remember you can use the APC40 in Live 7.14 & above.

  • http://www.miguelantoniomusic.com Miguel Antonio

    They do work with the latest version of Live 7, quite nicely I might add :D

  • rorz007

    SO MANY FLASHY LIGHTS!