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Akai MPC Family History

Published: Tue April 02, 2013  News Feed

Akai MPC Family History

By Hugh McKenna

MPC Logo

It kicked off a whole new style of production and beat making in the late eighties with New School hip hop. Since then it's been embraced by producers and musicians from almost every genre (well, it's still not too popular with orchestras).

MPC Family
Model Released Sample Rate Sampling Time Storage Method Who's Using This MPC?
MPC60 1988 12-bit 40 kHz (13.1 sec) / (26.2 sec) Floppy Disk DJ Shadow famously assembled his spectacular debut album 'Endtroducing' on an MPC60
MPC60 MK2 1991 12-bit 40 kHz (13.1 sec) / (26.2 sec) Floppy Disk DJ Premier is still rocking an MPC60 MkII, twenty years after helping define the sound of hip hop.
MPC3000 1993 16-bit 44.1 kHz (22 sec) / (6 min) Floppy Disk None other than Dr Dre is a big fan of the MPC and the 3000 has been used on some of his biggest productions
MPC2000 1997 22 or 44.1 kHz 6min mono/3min stereo Floppy Disk   Hard Drive  
MPC2000XL 2000 22 or 44.1 kHz 6min mono/3min stereo Floppy Disk   Hard Drive  
MPC4000 2002 96, 48 or 44.1 kHz, 16 or 24 bit 96min / 64min (16/24 bit) Hard Drive   CD Rom
Glitchy beat master Prefuse 73 has pushed the MPC to the limit. With all his effects and beatslicing sequenced via MPC.
MPC1000 2005 44.1 kHz 136 sec / 24m28sec Hard Drive  
MPC500 2006 44.1 kHz 136 sec / 24m28sec  
MPC2500 2005 44.1 kHz 136 sec / 24m28sec Hard Drive   CD Rom      For sheer mind blowing abilities it's hard to argue with AraabMuzik as the master of the 2500. Check him out on Youtube.
MPC5000 2008 44.1 kHz 12m48s/38m24s Hard Drive   CD Rom      The Alchemist has worked with a huge range of artists in a variety of genres, including Ghostface Killah, Mobb Deep, Linkin Park and Morcheeba.
MPC Renaissance 2012 up to 24 bit / 96 kHz Varies depending on how much RAM your computer has MacWin Since it's introduction last year the Renaissance has found a home in countless studios. Legendary producers Q-Tip and Pete Rock have made the switch already.

The Renaissance represents something of a departure from the standalone production centre, with so much potential power contained in even basic laptops and the possibilities of integration with other software being too vast to ignore. Always on the cutting edge Akai have also developed interfaces to integrate an MPC with your iPad. So that's many times the computing power and storage space compared to the original MPC60, all in a package you can tuck comfortably into your backpack.

MPC Fly - An MPC For Your iPadMPC Fly iPad

  • Compatible with any iPad with 30-pin connector
  • Compatible with virtually any Core MIDI app
  • Works seamlessly with the iMPC app (sold separately)
  • 16 genuine MPC pads, MPC Note Repeat, and MPC Swing
  • Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery
  • Charges iPad when plugged into wall power

MPC Studio - The Full MPC Experience Made Portable And Very Affordable

If you don't need the full range of I/O and controls offered by the Renaissance then you can still get the complete MPC experience from the MPC Studio. Big LCD screen, MPC pads and full control over sequencing, sampling and effects it's all here for a fraction of the cost of the original MPC60 (with considerably more than 26 seconds sampling time available on your PC).

MPC Studio - Hooks Up To Your Computer At Home, In The Studio Or On The GoMPC Studio

  • Fuses legendary MPC production with the processing power of your computer
  • Compact design is less than 1” thin and fits easily into a laptop bag
  • MPC SOFTWARE for Mac & PC with 128-track sequencing capability
  • 16 backlit genuine MPC pads, legendary MPC workflow & MPC Swing
  • USB-powered with low-profile knobs and brushed aluminum body
  • Large LCD screen allows you to make tracks without having to look at your computer
  • Four touch-sensitive knobs provide enhanced MPC software control



Some of the big names who have been using MPCs for years are making the switch to the new integrated Renaissance and Studio models. Check out hip hop legends DJ Premier & Pete Rock talking shop.


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