Native Instruments Komplete Kontrol S88
A bigger little brother now completes the Native Instruments Komplete Kontrol series! There were models with 25, 49 and 61 keys; now, we have the S88 with - you guessed it - 88 keys. It was only a matter of time before this happened. It's as though MIDI keyboards with 88 keys are slowly but surely making a comeback.
It would seem obvious that only pianists would be interested in the S88, but nothing could be farther from the truth. Naturally, for larger instruments like piano, harp and organ, the S88 fits the bill; but for compound instruments like complete strings, choirs and drum kits, the S88 is just as ideal. The real power is the seamless integration with the Native Instruments Kontakt, by far the most popular virtual sample player at the moment.
Integration with Kontakt
When you want to read your Kontakt parameters, simply refer to the display located on the rotary encoders. Incidentally, the mapping of these takes place automatically. Even more remarkable are the coloured LEDs above the keys. If you work with Kontakt regularly, you'll have noticed that the virtual keyboard in this software has different colours - red and green, for example. These colours all have a function of their own within the Kontakt instruments used, like playing keys or key switches. This is all very clear in the software, but less so on a standard MIDI keyboard. However, this is not the case with the S88. The coloured LEDs take on the colours of the Kontakt instruments. So, while working on the S88, you can see where the key switches are and where the playing keys are, without having to look at your computer screen. Very handy!
In short, with the addition of this S88 keyboard, the Komplete Kontrol series now seems to be complete indeed. If you're a fervent Kontakt user who works with large orchestra libraries, then you surely won't underestimate the potential of the S88.