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#2827469 - 01/11/17 08:40 PM Roland A-49
sunshadow Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 06/25/16
Posts: 91
Anyone use this keyboard controller? I think it looks good because it's light and you can put it in your lap for relaxed sitting back and playing in the studio. The quality looks good, as far as the keys themselves compared to all the other 49 key controllers out there? Anyone have one or have experience?


Edited by sunshadow (01/11/17 08:44 PM)
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#2827483 - 01/12/17 01:19 AM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: sunshadow]
TomKittel Offline
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Registered: 07/09/13
Posts: 411
I bought one a couple of weeks ago and I really like it. Built quality and keybed are best in class compared to cheaper alternatives.

BTW: It lacks a connection jack for a power supply. Hence most people don't seem to know that it is possible to power it up without a computer. You need to use a USB power supply. Then just hold the Function, Assign, and Pitch buttons while plugging the unit into the USB power supply to enable standalone mode. It's Rolandesque weirdness that the manual lacks this information... I was close to return it before I found this instruction somewhere in the web. Ever since I am very happy with it.

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#2827531 - 01/12/17 07:21 AM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: TomKittel]
sunshadow Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 06/25/16
Posts: 91
cool thanks for the reply

standalone mode? u mean u can use it without the driver software right? and u would use the midi out port to control ? but what is powering it? you mean u but a "usb charger"?
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#2827604 - 01/12/17 10:55 AM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: sunshadow]
konaboy Online   content
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Registered: 09/23/02
Posts: 903
Haven't published my video review yet was planning to do it at the weekend, but since you ask here's the unlisted link.



Rather a disappointment I'm afraid, given that roland promote this as a pro action.
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#2827608 - 01/12/17 11:04 AM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: konaboy]
Bill W Offline
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Registered: 05/04/10
Posts: 826
Loc: Washington DC
Thanks for sharing that video. I'm in the market for a couple of controllers and that looks like it has the same problem as the Roland A-800PRO with regard to the keys.
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#2827613 - 01/12/17 11:29 AM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: Bill W]
konaboy Online   content
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Registered: 09/23/02
Posts: 903
not only a roland problem, once you are aware of this issue, and if you tend to play in the black keys, Eb Ab etc, then you notice this on lots of keyboards, my nord lead, psr all have the same curse of the short key hinge.

i'd be really interested to hear from others, is this something that you have noticed and bothers you, or is just me?
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#2827703 - 01/12/17 04:11 PM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: konaboy]
sunshadow Offline
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Registered: 06/25/16
Posts: 91
cool interesting review. I kind of assume the action won't be amazing I mean the whole point of it is to be really compact And light . what compact lightweight 49 key controller would be a better option ? the reason I want this like I said is you could easily pick this up with one hand and put it Inuit lap in a cramped space . you can't do that with dx7. I'm talking about sitting back on a recliner chair with my daw hooked up to a large 42 inch tv. I'm not sitting up at a desk 2 feet away from the screen.

this would be for composition more in Relaxed setting, where u don't need maximum playability , I have a b
nord piano2 off to my right that I sit upright in a chair to really play for the purpose of performance and total playability .


Edited by sunshadow (01/12/17 04:15 PM)
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#2827708 - 01/12/17 04:41 PM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: sunshadow]
Markyboard Offline
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Registered: 02/10/01
Posts: 4773
Loc: Springfield, Virginia
I found the Akai MPK249 to be the best of this type. Still not up to the Fatar TP9 equipped boards like the Andromeda A6, Voyager and PEK to name a few. It still has the short key pivot problem but not as bad as the others and I can reasonably control the velocity response playing inside the black key. Some here really like the Arturia Keylab 49/61 but for me the action was too light and the reviews showed too many reliability issues.

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#2827722 - 01/12/17 05:10 PM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: Markyboard]
sunshadow Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 06/25/16
Posts: 91
yea I had narrowed it down to getting the Akai 49 also but I've seen a lot of ads for used ones with missing knobs. the other thing is on the also the pitch wheels are on top of the Keybed instead of beside so that makes it even more compact which is good for lap playing. but it's a lot deeper and bulkier than a49 but it also uses an adaptor for power which I like . but yea with the review in question here I don't think it's fair from a consumer perspective to compare the a49 to a dx7. u should compare it to other similar lightweight controllers like akai, novation impulse , key lab , nektor or m-audio midi controllers . and to me for my purposes I want a good Keybed but u have to balance it with it being ultra lightweight like u can't expect a really thin light controller to also be amazing to play.

I can't see myself ever buying an Arturia or Alesis product, they just seem to be subpar brands in terms of quality


Edited by sunshadow (01/12/17 05:12 PM)
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#2827745 - 01/12/17 06:44 PM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: sunshadow]
EscapeRocks Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 08/12/03
Posts: 4274
Loc: Texas
Originally Posted By: sunshadow


I can't see myself ever buying an Arturia or Alesis product, they just seem to be subpar brands in terms of quality


I would suggest not writing off Arturia. Their latest Keylabs have been built very well. I own the Keylab 61 Black edition, and it is rock solid. Metal chassis. Solid buttons and sliders.

It has worked perfectly for me, controlling Mainstage
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#2827789 - 01/13/17 01:34 AM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: sunshadow]
TomKittel Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 07/09/13
Posts: 411
Originally Posted By: sunshadow
cool thanks for the reply

standalone mode? u mean u can use it without the driver software right? and u would use the midi out port to control ? but what is powering it? you mean u but a "usb charger"?


Standalone mode indeed means using it without connection to a computer to control sound modules or such thru it's midi out port. For this purpose it needs to be connected to a iPhone charger or such with a regular USB cable.

It is what it is: a very compact Midi keyboard controller with a better than average built quality. You would not use it for playing a Rachmaninov piano concerto.

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#2827793 - 01/13/17 02:11 AM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: TomKittel]
sunshadow Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 06/25/16
Posts: 91
lol ok cool yea that sounds good so basically you can make it like having an adaptor you just plug in to an iPhone bAttery charger and switch to standalone. yes I don't like using tons of usb powered things, I already have Soundcard , Push and mouse on usb. that was literally the one thing I didn't like about the a49 was u couldn't use adaptor. plus I have found that midi cables/external Soundcard can be more "stable" than usb driver software and usb cable
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#2829243 - 01/18/17 07:57 PM Re: Roland A-49 [Re: sunshadow]
sunshadow Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 06/25/16
Posts: 91
ok I just grabbed one, this is seriously a steal . the keys feel excellent and it's so fucking light to pick up. I would be confident to use this for live performance. Roland hit it out of the park with this one . I could see this becoming their best seller once more people catch on
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