Alesis VI61 Keyboard Controller

61-key Semi-weighted USB MIDI Keyboard Controller with Aftertouch, 16 Backlit Pads, Two Wheels, 16 Assignable Knobs, and 48 Assignable Buttons
Alesis VI61 Keyboard Controller image 1
Alesis VI61 Keyboard Controller image 1
$279.99
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Alesis VI61 Keyboard Controller
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Compact Controller with Full-size Keys and Aftertouch

Take in-depth control of your DAW and virtual instruments with the Alesis VI61 USB MIDI keyboard controller. This compact keyboard sports 61 semi-weighted, full-sized keys with aftertouch. The 16 velocity- and pressure-sensitive pads use multicolor LEDs, so you can color code them for specific uses. Show your plug-ins who's the boss with 16 illuminated, assignable knobs and 48 buttons. Dedicated transport controls make recording with your DAW quick and easy. It also includes Ableton Live Lite 9 and a Software Preset/Parameter utility. Call your Sweetwater Sales Engineer for more information on the Alesis VI61 USB MIDI keyboard controller.

Alesis VI61 USB MIDI Keyboard Controller at a Glance:
  • A compact keyboard with tons of functionality
  • All of the controls you need, right where you need them to be
  • USB and MIDI outputs provide compatibility with all of your gear
A compact keyboard with tons of functionality

The Alesis VI61, with its 61-note semi-weighted keyboard, is ideal for two-handed performing - while remaining portable. The VI61 gives you a bevy of controls, including pitch and mod wheels, transport controls, and a massive selection of pads, buttons and encoders. You have everything you need to take command of your DAW and virtual instruments in the studio or onstage. The flexibility and functionality of the Alesis VI61 USB MIDI keyboard controller is something we at Sweetwater know most keyboard players will appreciate.

All of the controls you need, right where you need them to be

The Alesis VI61 USB MIDI keyboard controller puts a wide selection of controls at your fingertips. First, there are the semi-weighted keys themselves, all 61 of which give you aftertouch control. You also get 16 RGB backlit, velocity-sensitive drum pads let you tap out rhythms and trigger loops, plus the VI61 features a full transport section for running your DAW. Above the keys are 16 illuminated, assignable knobs and 48 illuminated, assignable buttons that can be programmed to control the parameters of your favorite virtual instruments. Add that to the pitch and modulation wheels and you have a controller that is ready to take on any project.

USB and MIDI outputs provide compatibility with all of your gear

Whether you use a MIDI keyboard or a computer running virtual instruments for your sounds, the VI61 controller will integrate perfectly with your synth rig. That's because Alesis outfitted it with both a 5-pin MIDI output port and a fully class-compliant USB port, which gives you plug-and-play computer connectivity. The Alesis VI61 lets you take command of your DAW and Virtual Instruments like never before.

Alesis VI61 USB MIDI Keyboard Controller Features:
  • Compact USB controller for controlling plug-ins and virtual instruments
  • Full-sized, semi-weighted keys with a square front and aftertouch
  • 16 velocity and pressure sensitive multicolor backlit pads
  • 16 illuminated, assignable knobs and 48 buttons
  • Dedicated transport controls for recording
  • PitchBend and Modulation wheels
  • USB bus powered
  • Includes Ableton Live Lite Alesis Edition
The Alesis VI61 is a powerful, affordable USB MIDI keyboard controller!

Tech Specs

Pads 16
Number of Keys 61
Type of Keys Full-size, Semi-weighted
Aftertouch Yes
Other Controllers Pitchbend, Mod Wheel
Encoders/Pots 16 x Knobs, 48 x Buttons
Dedicated Transport Control Yes
Pedal Inputs 1 x Sustain
MIDI I/O Out
USB 1 x Type B
Manufacturer Part Number VI61

Customer Reviews

4/5
Based on 6 reviews
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5/5

Great quality for great price

Everything works fantastic! The best part is the ability to map anything I want at all to all the knobs and buttons. This is a very useful controller for any setting. I use it specifically for live, and it has not disappointed me yet.
5/5

Works well with Minitaur

I have been using this controller for about a year, and I continue to admire its simplicity and flexibility. Although the build quality is light, it is still sturdy. After taking the time to configure, I now have superior control over my Moog Minitaur. I can select octaves, presets and control any Minitaur knob function using the controller knobs. The feel of the keybed along with the ease of control feels like I'm playing a musical instrument instead of messing around with a toy. I can't wait to see what else I can control. My experience with this controller has inspired me to try more Alesis products.
Music background: Classical Composer/Performer
4.5/5

Nicely Done

I haven't seen many reviews on this keyboard so I'll give it a moment of my time since I've owned one a while now. I wanted a basic keyboard MIDI controller that is universal to any software, is well built, and does all that MIDI is designed to do (aftertouch and so forth). I went through a difficult time, almost two years, off and on, examining controllers in showrooms where I could find them, or purchasing them when I couldn't find them, sure that the one I bought was going to be "the one". Unfortunately I had to RMA seven different keyboard controllers, all had defects of one kind or another upon arrival, everything from slime all over the keys to a loose part floating around inside. That's a testament to just how poor this market is. After about two years of going through MIDI controller "fire", I've concluded MIDI controller manufacturers cater to ignorant newbies thus get away with things they shouldn't get away with. I'm convinced there are many defective controllers sitting in studios in which the user is unaware it has one or more defects, or it's just simply a poorly designed controller the user is content with but wouldn't be if he/she knew the truth about it. Furthermore, too many MIDI controllers have gone off on their own proprietary tangents, which makes them unusable without some special software arrangements. This Alesis controller isn't perfect but it sticks to the basics and does that nicely. You don't need to install anything to use it. The computer sees it automatically without installing anything. However if you want to program VI61 controller MIDI codes (assign certain codes to any button or control dial) other than the defaults it ships with, then you can. The downloadable Alesis software used to program the controller is intuitive but it has the very annoying quirk of having to set the preferences in the programmer software to see the controller hardware. This has to be done literally every time the programmer is run. It only takes a few seconds, but you have to remember to do that or you'll get an error message when you try to send new button/dial/key assignments or retrieve existing ones to/from the hardware. On the other hand, if you use plug ins that have their own "learn" function, you don't need to program a MIDI controller at all, you can do it all in the plug in itself using the default settings already programmed into the controller. As for the hardware, the keys have a quality to them, no clunkiness, no squeaks, and the bottom stop is solid (no bottom mushiness typical of other aftertouch keyboards). Overall the controller has a solid build quality, unlike most. The power switch is unlike any other I've seen on a MIDI controller, perfectly done. It's a momentary ON/OFF toggle which works out fantastic for leaving it USB connected (if it's OFF it stays OFF until you turn it ON and doesn't depend on whether the computer itself is switched OFF / ON). You can also use an external power supply if you want, and it has a standard MIDI OUT if you want to use that rather than USB. The reasons I'm giving it 4.5 and not 5.0 stars is due to the plug in advertised on the box being "promise ware" (not realized), the poorly positioned octave switch (easy to mistake the transport for), noisy push buttons, and for incorrectly putting the pitch / mod wheels on top, not the bottom where the pads are located, thus easy to hit the pads with your wrist while using pitch and mod. One nice advantage of the 61 key over the 49 key model is there are four more dials on the 61 key version, so price ratio is very good with the 61 key controller vs 49 key. Nevertheless, don't expect to ever get an authorization sent for the "free" plug in. They never sent it, even after numerous requests for it. Sometimes one has to make a decision whether to let a company get away with a thing like that or just live with what one really wants from the product. All I cared about was the hardware, and after seven RMA's with other controllers this one was the best for my needs. As far as I know, Alesis has not made DAW preset files available for download, but this could be done if they really wanted, without any revision to the hardware. Nevertheless, programming is easy if you know what the controller codes are (I haven't bothered with it, and most others don't want to either).
4.5/5

The editor is HERE

At last the alesis editor for this board is downloadable! There are so many variations I can't believer it... Just learning to figure out how to link this all to logic as it in not a plug and play logic midi assigned thing. You have to figure our how and waht you want to control.... BUT alas,, i can access the velocity etc,,,,,,
Music background: writer, performer
3.5/5

Great board,but not Presonus S1-Friendly

The physical controls on this board are utterly outstanding...smooth & solid pitch & mod wheels,very responsive drum pads and the key-bed is an absolute dream(medium tension semi-weighted-piano-style-keys with a nice recoil response.The editor looks comprehensive,but with one fatal flaw for Presonus S1 users; Studio One is strictly Midi Machine Control and the Alesis V1 only has Command Control...so the transport controls are completely inoperative and equally disappointing,is that there are ZERO DAW presets...which means...that even if you have a CC-compliant DAW...you still have to configure the controls manually(apart from the drum pads and pitch & mod wheels)....nice going Alesis...really brilliant work on your part! The included Xpand!2 synth is a very nice bonus...but without any transport control functionality,I may have to return my VI61.
Music background: Avid Hobbyist
See also: Controller Keyboards, Alesis, Alesis MIDI Controllers