Whether you’re a new or a veteran musician, you need the best MIDI keyboard for FL studio if you want to make the most of your practice, performance or music composing.
It’s the exact same reason we’ve put up this guide that will help you pick the right MIDI keyboard if you’re using FL studio for your music production.
Shall we get started?
How to Choose a Good MIDI Keyboard?
Check out the following section for a few tips to buy your first MIDI keyboard controller for the FL studio.
Related: MIDI & Music Synthesis Tutorial
Choose one with a range of knobs, buttons and sliders
Many controllers have a range of buttons, sliders and knobs on the top panel in addition to the piano-style keys on them.
Check on these things to ensure that the controller can transmit MIDI data, increasing your control over the plugs-ins, software or module you connected to it.
Check on the number of keys
Your available space or budget can influence your choice on the keyboard based on the number of keys it has.
For example, one with 25 keys can be enough if you’re just entering the bass lines, drum lines and chords.
On the other hand, the same source reveals that you might want to stay away from a model that has fewer than 49 keys if you’re a keyboard player and size does not matter for you.
For one, controllers with at least 49 keys are great for entering basic to intermediate keyboard learning and music. But then, they don’t take up much space.
But for sequencing and composing, the number of keys on the controller might not be that important.
The Best MIDI Keyboards for FL Studio
- Akai Professional MPK Mini MKII
- Novation Launchkey 49 USB Keyboard Controller
- Alesis V49 USB MIDI Keyboard
- Nektar Impact GX61 Controller Keyboard
- Nektar Impact LX88+
- Alesis V61 MIDI Keyboard
- M-Audio Hammer 88
The best midi keyboard for FL studio should offer flexibility. That’s one of the things that the Akai Professional MPK Mini MKII is offering. It is ultra versatile as either a USB midi controller or an ultra portable mini keyboard.
Another thing that I would like to recommend it for is the 128 sounds along with 10 drum kits included.
It is a compact model with a great design, including an OLED display and 25 sensitive synth-action keys. The keyboard also has an easy to use joystick control, which adds to convenience of operation.
I also love that it comes with built-in speakers and headphone output, allowing you to play anywhere.
- Works as a standalone keyboard for practices
- Comes with a built-in speaker
- Ultra sensitive and responsive pads
- Not the best designed keyboards around
- Might need a little more time to get used to mastering all its functions
As a user of Ableton Live, you should be looking for a keyboard controllers that let you play with feeling. The Novation Launchkey 49 is one of the top picks for the purpose.
I noticed that it’s so easy to use. In fact, you can just plug it via USB and then play anywhere. All the pads, knobs and keys will work right away, allowing for a hands-on control of the mixer, effects and instruments, among others.
Overall, the keyboard controller is for those who want to mess less with their mouse but spend more time in creating music.
- Can work without power cable or driver
- Suite of software included for Mac or PC
- Warranty needs improvement
- Can be a bit bulky
Whether you’re looking to produce or play great music, you can rely on the Alesis V49.
It’s a powerful and reliable MIDI controller packed with all the features and functions you’re looking for a great keyboard and drum pad controller.
For dynamic performance, the Alesis V49 is what you need. It allows you to take full control of your favorite music software while also having the ability to play and perform.
The octave up and down buttons along with the 49 velocity-sensitive keys let you expand the function of the keyboard into a full melodic range to play different melodies, chords and bass lines.
- Designed with visual and seamless feedback through the illuminated knobs and buttons
- Flexibility for it allows connectivity for PC and Mac and USB power
- Not as many keys available
- Can take some time to get used to controlling it fully
When it comes to versatility, the Nektar Impact GX61 is one of those to consider for its Nektar DAW Integration for common and popular DAWs. Available are eight buttons for DAW control, strategically placed in the middle.
The DAW integration and the extended functionality of the eight buttons let you spend more time in creating great music instead of dealing with your mouse most of the time that can kill inspiration and creativity.
Another thing I would like to recommend it for includes assignable buttons for specific MIDI messages. They can be used in MIDI software unsupported by the DAW integration.
- Comes with 61 keys
- Modulation wheels and onboard pitch bend
- Designed to work with PC Mac or iOS
- Pads are slightly small
- Feels a bit weightless keybed
Musicians around the world have long known the reliability and solid performance of Nektar. One of their best offerings so far is the Nektar Impact LX88+, a premium MIDI controller, which is best in class.
I liked that it offers more flexibility for the 88-note modulation wheels and onboard pitch bend. Each is also semi-weighted, velocity-sensitive and has medium tension for ease of use.
In addition, the Impact LX88+ is for you if you’re looking for extended reach because it’s designed with an intelligent performance control and can hook up to your DAW.
The 88-note keyboard is designed with balance. In fact, the best midi keyboard for FL studio also offers a dynamic response and velocity curves that can increase in dynamics to match your playing style.
- Comes with Bigwig 8-Track DAW
- Compatible with iOS, PC or Mac
- Keys are not so great
- Feels a bit flimsy
Another top pick not to miss in today’s review is the Alesis V61, which gives you more control over your music for the continued inspiration and flowing of ideas.
One of the things that I liked about the Alesis V61 is that it is a 61-note model that lets you be more creative in music production and dynamic performances.
If you’re looking to take full control of the virtual instruments and plug-ins, you might want to consider the keyboard that also includes assignable buttons and knobs.
It also comes with eight LED drum trigger pads that can respond to pressure and velocity, making it easy to use. I’d also like to recommend it for its pitch and mod wheels.
- Pitch and mod wheels included
- Velocity-sensitive keys
- Not as many keys on this model
Choose the Hammer 88 if you’re looking for a non-compromising controller that suits students, semi pros and professional musicians looking for a grand piano feel for different sound modules and virtual instruments.
This controller offers a USB MIDI connection function that allows for easy controlling of recording software and playing virtual instruments.
This model with 88 velocity-sensitive keys can capture each performance nuisance and deliver that grand piano feel along with the sonic capabilities of virtual instruments.
I’d also like to note that the M-Audio Hammer 88 allows for more flexibility. It offers just the right kind of mix of features for producers and performers who want to get more of their plugin collection.
- Seamless integration for Eleven Lite
- ProTools and Ableton Live Lite
- Suitable for beginner to advanced players
- Keys aren’t that responsive
Do all MIDI keyboards work with FL Studio?
Yes, they do. FL Studio has been working on MIDI keyboards since it’s early days and there are no known limitations or bugs with any specific model (or brand). However because of its flexibility in mapping, you may find that some controllers work better than others for your particular workflow. This is particularly noticeable when using the Channel Rack to control FX, or the Piano roll to play instruments.
Is Ableton or FL Studio better?
The answer to this question is subjective. It has nothing to do with the software itself and everything to do with your own personal preference. Both platforms are exceptionally easy to use and have their pros and cons.
The best midi keyboard for FL Studio is the Akai Professional MPK MKII. It is a great standalone mini keyboard that also works as a good MIDI keyboard controller with a wide range of onboard effects.
It also works as a USB MIDI controller that you can take anywhere because it’s also portable.
It also boasts 128 sounds plus 10 drum kits. I’d also like to recommend the compact model because it comes with a headphone output and built-in speakers.