The Komplete Kontrol-S keyboards have been on the market for a while now, but excitingly Native Instruments has continued to build up a software-side system that supports the line and makes it even more powerful. With a new update to the Komplete Kontrol software, producers can use their own VST instruments and developers can build native versions of their instruments with a new format. Plus, thereâ€™s a new 88-key version of the keyboard!
One of the biggest issues with the Komplete Kontrol software has been a dependency on NIâ€™s own instruments, but now the software allows VSTs to be used as well. Thereâ€™s a Control Panel in the 1.5 update that allows custom parameter mappings to the keyboard hardware, meaning that you can set presets for a live performance with a VST instrument.
NKS = Native Kontrol Standard
This is the big news in this 1.5 update â€“ Native Instruments is opening up their plug-in format to allow VST / Kontakt instrument developers to integrate their devices with both Komplete Kontrol and Maschine hardware/software. This isnâ€™t just top-level integration either, it allows deep parameter mappings, access to the keyboardsâ€™ Light Guide (to display key switches and sample assignments), use of the Smart Play features like the arpeggiator, touch strips, scale mapping, and more.
Itâ€™s not just an empty room in the NKS world right now either â€“ Native Instruments has already gotten a number of major instrument manufacturers to sign on, all of which have agreed to releasing an NKS version of their instruments for free to current owners â€“ partners so far include Arturia, u-he, Output Audio, Heavyocity, Spitfire Audio and more.
Komplete Kontrol S88
Adding another keyboard to the Komplete Kontrol lineup, the new S88 brings a full set of 88 â€śfully weighted, hammer-actionâ€ť keys to the table. It might be a simple-looking update to add a few more octaves, but Native Instrumentsâ€™ notes on the keyboard note that the action and feel of the keys are even closer to a true piano experience thanks to â€śpremium keybed from Fatar, featuring fully-weighted, hammer-action keys and superior aftertouchâ€ť. All of the controls that are present on other Kontrol S keyboards are included as well.
The Kontrol S88 is set to come out October 27th (the same day as the Komplete Kontrol 1.5 software update), and will sell for $999.
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