SONAR X1′s Active Controller Technology (ACT) allows for full control over your mix and effects via hardware MIDI controller. Not only can you control mix settings like volume and pan on tracks, ACT lets you control parameters on effect and synth plugins in real time!
Coupled with the Roland A-300PRO MIDI Keyboard Controller you can fully immerse yourself in your mixes. No more “mousing around” to draw automation for a filter sweep on a synth, grab a control and get interactive.
ACT has templates for most MIDI controllers so setup is a breeze and hardware controls are already mapped to the most common parameters in all of your plugins. Want to customize the mapping? It’s as simple as pushing one button, clicking the parameters and moving the desired hardware controls. No menus needed!
Watch ACT and the A-300PRO in action
The keyboard you see in the video is the Roland A-300PRO MIDI Keyboard Controller. I can honestly say that after using almost every controller out there this has been my favorite. The keys feel like a real synth because they ARE real synth keys, no cheap lightweight stuff here. And when you dig in for some aftertouch you don't have that feeling of "uh oh, did I just pop this key out?!", this is a pro-school piece of work. On top of this they've added eight velocity sensitive pads for pounding out drum beats or triggering loops and samples in the Matrix View of SONAR X1. The pads feel great, with just enough "give" to really feel the velocity. So many others have really hard, unmoving pads that make it hard to tell the difference in the velocity of the hits. Rounding out the keyboard is a very sturdy combination pitch/modulation stick, horizontal for pitch, vertical for modulation.
On the controller end, there are eight rotary knobs, nine sliders and buttons for all transport functions. Just like the keyboard, all of the controls are rock solid and made to take years of abuse. These are the controllers that we at Cakewalk use in the office, studio and on stage. My personal A-300PRO (shown in the video) is one of the final prototypes that I was sent before they were released. Shipped to me in a plain white box, it was my constant touring companion for two years following me through countless airport security checks and has endured hours upon hours of torture at my hands. All the while traveling in a small flimsy cardboard box that towards the end was more packing tape than cardboard and I’ve never had a single problem or breakage. Now that is road worthiness that can’t be argued.
And if all that wasn’t enough, it’s sleek black casing and orange back lit buttons make it one sexy beast too!