Novation has launched a pair of keyboards intended for users of FL Studio, called the FLkey 37 and FLkey Mini.
While they are based on existing Novation Launchkey keyboard designs for Ableton Live, these are actually the first keyboards we can think of that anybody has made primarily for this popular production software (there’s the Akai Fire, but that is something a bit different).
The FLkey37 includes a small LCD display as well as its eight knobs, 16 RGB backlit pads and pitch and mod wheels, plus various buttons. The FLkey Mini has touchstrips in place of the modwheels but retains both the knobs and the pads, but has fewer buttons. The full-sized keys on the ’37 are unsurprisingly replaced by a shrunken keyboard (25-key) on the Mini.
As well as USB connection and a 1/4″ sustain pedal input, the FLkey 37 has a full-size Mini socket, the Mini replacing this with an 1/8″ jack.
FL Studio? Tell me more…
FL Studio is actually a huge deal in production software, at least among our students. It comes in second only to Ableton Live, and in our community is a long way ahead of all the others, including Apple’s Logic Pro.
Originally “Fruity Loops”, it was the first software of many top producers, many of whom still use it today. It has always run a “pay once, all updates for free” business model that endears it to its users – much like Virtual DJ in the DJ world.
The keyboards have a scale mode, the ’37 adds a chord mode, and the buttons are used for navigating instruments, channel racks, using transport, redo/undo, and more.
However as with most Novation hardware, you can use the excellent Components web app editor to switch things up, in this case to create custom mappings.
Read this next: 7 Things To Consider When Setting Up A First Home Music Studio
Yes, in the software bundle are a six-month trial of FL Studio Producer Edition, XLN Audio Addictive Keys, Kievgrand Reverb, Kievgrand DAW Cassette, Applied Audio Systems Session Bundle, and Spitfire Audio Expressive Strings.
• The prices are around $110 and $200. More info and videos at the Novation website.