Connected Objects
The Kombos modular MIDI keyboard puts a full keyboard in your backpack

Aspiring producers, DJs, and musicians are between a rock and a hard place: either buy a full-size keyboard and have logistical issues, or get a smaller one and be stuck with not enough keys. In 2016, the team behind the Kombos modular keyboard thought it was about time to do something about it.

With its wireless, modular design, the Kombos USB-MIDI/MIDI keyboard can either be set to a 25-, 37-, 49-, or 61-key configurations depending on what’s needed at the moment. And since its pin system lets it disconnect easily, it can fit into a book bag, letting maestros jam out pretty much anywhere. It’s Bluetooth enabled, as well, so it connects to pretty much any device and functions with everything from the lowest cost music creation app to the very high-end stuff like Ableton Live and Logic. Semi-weighted keys and an eight-hour battery life ensure comfortable usage for long periods of time. A set containing all 61 keys goes for $299, with lower tiers available with less number of keys. It’s slated to ship in March 2017 should its Kickstarter campaign raise $25,000 by September 18th, 2016.

Another crowdfunded keyboard, Keys, is also MIDI-compliant but delivers a different sort of experience using gestures instead of going for versatility, offering just 49 or 72 key variations. In the end, it’s not as portable although still well worth its price in terms of what it offers, so a decision must be made about what’s more important in the end. Not a bad position to be in anymore, right?

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