Suggestions for Advance Keyboard and VIP

Bugs aside there are some ideas I would like to put forward which could improve the product and software after a weekend of use. Would be interested to see others ideas too.

#1
User Exchange Forum
I would like to see a new dedicated forum for this product as it is a little different from many others. We need to be able to share things such as Preset Maps, Updated thumb images for display on keyboard/VIP, Suggestions for features that are easy for people to vote on and information about the latest updates etc. This forum section is terrible for discussing things

#2
Update Patch\Save As
Currently it is possible to save new assignments to a patch or plugin but no way to actually update the patch map itself.

An example is Omnisphere where you must "Enable Host Automation" on a control to learn it as a new control in VIP. While it is possible to do this, loading the patch again will show the VIP changed control but the enabled host automation setting in Omnisphere is lost because the actual VST patch component is not updated.

A "workaround" for this which is a bit more intensive is to save the new patch, delete the old one and rename this patch. An option to update would be great.

Another extension to this would be when saving a patch manually (or even auto exporting) if a patch exists from the same plugin with the same name an option allowed the user to "update/overwrite/save copy". For batch exporting there could also be an automated option that could be selected so it would not require always clicking a dialogue box when updating patches that were mapped wrong.

#3
Management of Keyboard Presets
The keyboard does not remember which DAW preset you use and reverts to Logic. It would be good if there was a tool that allowed all the presets to be configured, re-ordered and exported/imported by the user. This would allow the user to place the DAW of choice at the top of the list for "auto load"

#4
Better Management of Multis and controller mapping for DAW
I would like to see tighter integration with DAWs allowing the feedback of data to the keyboard for one. But also within VIP an additional configuration screen would be good (or even as part of the preset management tool idea from #3) that allowed configuration of the keyboards DAW controls from software. As much as the keyboard is designed to get you away from the PC, when setting up things and changing things like this it would be good to have the option to do this from a PC.

It would also be nice if you could load patches into the multis from the PC. When I select a channel in a multi and try and load a patch it loads to slot 1 only. I can do it from keyboard but makes sense to allow PC use also.

#5
Inbuilt Patch Updates/Sharing within VIP
The store should be expanded to allow any instruments to receive patch map updates if desired and also allow users to submit patch maps with some notes and allow users to select to download. This would allow users to update control mappings for existing maps or create maps for devices that are not mapped and you could then sort through, try some out and see how they work all within VIP.

An addition to this could also allow users to submit patch map requests instead of going to the website and to view other users patch map requests and even possibly some indication that they are being worked on. This would offer more piece of mind for users that something is actually happening in the background.

#6
Multi-Selection boxes for keyboard encoder display
When you adjust an encoder the keyboard display highlights what you are adjusting with a box but only highlights 1 control. If you adjust more than 1 control the box jumps between values. Since most humans have 2 hands it should be possible for 2 boxes to appear on the screen at any one time

#7
VIP custom display size
It should be possible to either resize the VIP display or choose from a few different sizes. The current display size is simply too small for many situations.

#8
Auto-Selection of keyboard controller display (option in settings)
As it stands you need to press the Control button to toggle the display of the keyboard between controller, buttons and pads. It would be great if you could have the screen change automatically if you move from encoders to pads

#9
Auto preview of patches
It's been mentioned a few times and I agree that an option that you could enable to have a patch auto-load after say 1 or 2 seconds when scrolling through instead of having to press the wheel all the time.

#10
Programmable Arp
The Arp is kind of basic and the screen you would think could allow a programmable Arp from the keyboard. Even the ability to create arp patterns on the PC and download them to the keyboard. Additionally an actual live display of the Arp working on the keyboard would have been good.

#11
Chord feature
Seemed to have missed the boat on this one. A chord feature would be very welcome but not high on my request list.

#12
Expansion Editing
We need a way to add our own expansions so we can select a plugin and have a list of expansions available. I know this has been requested a few times.

#13
Better debug logging
A log is created for VIP but it is pretty bare from any debug info. More debugging (even if an option needed to be enabled for debugging) that could include a lot more system and plugin info could assist tech savvy users more and your support team.

#14
Ability to edit control parameters (such as min/max value for VST) and delete a control if not desired from the VIP software (currently only learn can be done from VIP)

#15
Select\View Favourite from Keyboard
This is strange that you can set favourites within the VIP software but no way to do the same direct form the keyboard.

There also needs to be an automatic category created (just like with Multis) for favourites so you can browse from the keyboard. You have to use the sort menu with the mouse.

The last suggestion is for AKAI to release they have a good product potential here but it is a heavily software driven product now that requires it's own software. You need to pick up the support ball a lot more because information and updates especially in these initial product moments need to be flowing much quicker than they are or users will simply turn away. If work is not done now you know what is coming around the corner, the market will catch up and software+hardware solutions really rely on good support and development.
11 people like
this idea
+1
Reply
  • Yes I like all these suggestions.. especially #1 its the easiest to implement, and one I'd prefere as I only come visit to see what other Advance/VIP users are talking about and any updates.

    #16 VIP -API build it yourself and add your own on keyboard/screen features.

    The question is when do we get new VIP updates Akai :D

    "#7
    VIP custom display size
    It should be possible to either resize the VIP display or choose from a few different sizes. The current display size is simply too small for many situations. "

    Would be nice if there were options, like the window just resized itself to fit the vst, but its pretty low on what I'd really like to see feature wise.

    I'd probably rearrange the list on what I'd want the most, but right now would like to see what Akai have as a roadmap for the software.
  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. indifferent, undecided, unconcerned happy, confident, thankful, excited kidding, amused, unsure, silly sad, anxious, confused, frustrated

  • Agree an API for users to make their own scripts and devices would be very welcome.

    The list of suggestions I have there are not in any order, just as I use the product and think "this would be nice"

    Almost ALL of them are below the actual issues I am having, especially with some VSTs that simply cannot have patches added to VIP in any way.
  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. indifferent, undecided, unconcerned happy, confident, thankful, excited kidding, amused, unsure, silly sad, anxious, confused, frustrated

  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. indifferent, undecided, unconcerned happy, confident, thankful, excited kidding, amused, unsure, silly sad, anxious, confused, frustrated

  • if akai took half of these ideas and implemented them or even hired mgee to be their software tester the akai advance would be a lot more popular than what it is now.

    akai definitely made the right product but with a few bug fixes it could be as popular as the kontrol. The hype surrounding the advance is the only reason it's selling, no one has even talked about it that much and it's already been out for a while.
  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. indifferent, undecided, unconcerned happy, confident, thankful, excited kidding, amused, unsure, silly sad, anxious, confused, frustrated

  • lookup 'akai advance' on youtube and almost all of the videos you'll see are videos that were promoted for the akai before it was even released!!!! only a handful of videos and articles regarding a consumer using the product or reviewing the product.

    there's definitely something wrong with that...
    • Yeah that is what I found which is why I sunk my teeth into it to actually try.

      I am preparing a rather in depth review of this product for Gearslutz and Ableton as I am active on both of these. I have been waiting to see how the communication lines would go because that is one of the things I mark on and so far the lines have been pretty poor. In fairness their actual support contacted me but I had several issues from them not actually reading my signed name and calling me "Jester" when I signed off as "Jason" to asking me to disconnect my keyboard and test when in my initial diagnosis of the issue I stated I was using VIP standalone and without the keyboard even attached.

      I am watching several dozen open threads here with not a single reply in any of them from their support in the last few days.

      I'm from a technical support background, trained in engineering and customer service and currently manage in a technical sales and support division so tech stuff is my blood and figuring out things is what I do. I have made a lot of workarounds already and honestly, I love this product and the idea of it and most of it works exactly as I would like. It just needs more focused attention especially around the VIP software since the actual product relies so much on that. It HAS to work and work not only well but the way people need (not just want) it to.

      I am in a position where the cost of the keyboard is really not an issue for me. If it fails it's not a big loss, sell and move on. BUT most do not have this luxury so they need to know facts and I am more than willing to demonstrate the actual facts where I can hence the reason I said to Akai straight up I would be reviewing this based on my experiences.

      I have no doubt that in several updates time we will see some good improvements. Never have I seen a 100% pass mark on V1.0 software so I am not marking too harsh on this. What I am kind of annoyed as many other would be I am guessing is simply not knowing what is being addressed or worked. I have read 2 replies from employees about Omnisphere2 presets where one said "They are being worked on" and the other said "we have had a lot of interest and have fed this back". I assume they are working on that but no idea how I will even know its been done.

      Will plug away and see what comes in a month.
  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. indifferent, undecided, unconcerned happy, confident, thankful, excited kidding, amused, unsure, silly sad, anxious, confused, frustrated

  • Hi,

    Thanks for the post.

    Again, I'm happy to add a lot of these as a feature request, though as you have said yourself, a lot of it has been mentioned and submitted already (VIP window size, updating patches, adding patches to multi slots, etc). I will add them again regardless.

    I cannot give any updates about what is being done or when things will be available, but I cannot stress enough that your thoughts and ideas are heard and greatly appreciated. Especially, regarding a new product such as the Advance.

    I would like you to clarify #14, though. The VST control parameters in VIP are able to be changed or deleted by clicking on the name of the parameter in the Control Panel. You can select None, plugin parameters, or CC value. Shift or CTRL click and drag on the knob to adjust the min/max parameters. You can also do all of this from the keyboard itself.

    #15: I like the idea of a favorite category, but you can currently filter favorites so that they appear at the top of your plugins patch list by using the sort options in the VIP software (next to search). This will be mirrored on the Advance as well. You can also create a new tag category under Instruments, and tag all your favorite patches. This way you can search that tag on your Advance and view all of your favorite patches

    Hope this will help a little in the meantime!
  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. indifferent, undecided, unconcerned happy, confident, thankful, excited kidding, amused, unsure, silly sad, anxious, confused, frustrated

  • In regards to #14
    I completely overlooked that though I was clicking all over. The name of the parameter is a small area to click but now that makes things much quicker and I should have noted that from one of the videos that showed exactly that. I did not know about holding ctrl to set the range, again, good to know.

    In regards to #15
    I am aware we can sort by favourites but from the keyboard you cannot do this. Creating a category is a good idea, didn't think of that.
    Still would be nice if an automatic category was created for favourites but for now I can work with making a category to add ones too.

    Another suggestion would be to mark favourites using the keyboard because one of the main things that is the big appeal is browsing and playing instruments direct from the keyboard. What I currently like to do is browse and find a sound I like on the keyboard and then move to another Multi slot to find another sound. When I have found 8 sounds I go to the software and find where these are in the browser and set as favourites. It is not possible either to set a loaded preset in a multi as a favourite, you have to locate it in the browser.
  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. indifferent, undecided, unconcerned happy, confident, thankful, excited kidding, amused, unsure, silly sad, anxious, confused, frustrated

  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. kidding, amused, unsure, silly indifferent, undecided, unconcerned sad, anxious, confused, frustrated happy, confident, thankful, excited

  • 1
    We SERIOUSLY NEED a way to update/overwrite a preset as opposed to creating a new one. When a preset is assigned to a set list or multi, and you need to make changes to the preset, this is the current procedure:

    1. Load preset "Titanium Guitar" from plugin X.
    2. Assign it to either a Multi or a Set List.
    3. Adjust "Titanium Guitar" parameters.
    4. "Import" the adjusted preset as a new preset, "Titanium Guitar 2".
    5. If additional tags were assigned to the original patch, re-assign tags to new patch.
    6. Since I don't need it anymore, delete "Titanium Guitar" preset.
    7. Rename "Titanium Guitar 2" to "Titanium Guitar".
    8. Assign new "Titanium Guitar" to multi/set list.

    Has anyone found a way to avoid this circus?
  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. indifferent, undecided, unconcerned happy, confident, thankful, excited kidding, amused, unsure, silly sad, anxious, confused, frustrated

  • This last is question I was just about to ask on the forum, but I'll just +1 here.

    So often all I want to do is adjust volume and/or octave to a factory preset, and this is a really convoluted process to go through just to do it.

    "Resave' is a pretty basic command, that's been around in software for quite a few years, for good reason!

    Please let me know if this has changed in the V2. I haven't found it in the manual.
  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. indifferent, undecided, unconcerned happy, confident, thankful, excited kidding, amused, unsure, silly sad, anxious, confused, frustrated