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Nektar Panorama: The Best Logic Control Surface Keyboards

Published: Tue September 08, 2015  News Feed
The new Logic Pro X integration with the Panorama series of controllers is now available. This upgrade makes Panorama the most comprehensive Logic controller on the market today, with integration over the entire DAW including mixer, insert plugins, instruments and project navigation!  Here's a look at the Panorama and also at other of the best Logic controllers to suit your needs and budget.

nektar panorama P6

Panorama Logic integration includes control over Logic native plugins, 3rd party AU plugins and of course comprehensive Logic DAW control. Three dedicated buttons give you access to Mixer, Instrument and Transport modes, each uniquely updating Panorama’s assignments and parameter display for a complete, transparent workflow.

With Panorama, there is no guessing. It's more than "just" a MIDI controller... it really is a cut above the rest! It’s the best "all-purpose" MIDI keyboard right now, that may as well be your most important piece of gear, if you're one of those who prefer a completely computer-based setup.

And even if you're mainly using Logic to record vocals or other instruments such as guitar, using a Panorama controller can be a major help - such as controlling all aspects of the Mixer channel, like inserts,sends as well as multi-channel mixing. You can control smart controls and also set up auto punch in transport mode, including punching in/out with a foot switch.

Besides Logic Pro X, the Panorama keyboards are also preset for deep integration with Bitwig Studio, Cubase, Nuendo, Reaper and Reason.

Here's an early demo of the Panorama Logic Pro integration:

About Logic Pro X

Apple Logic Pro X

EDM and Hip Hop take centre stage in this release of Logic Pro with a new set of beat-creation tools including 10 beat-making Drummers and Drum Machine Designer, a new plug-in for customising electronic drum kits. Produce even the most complex tracks easily with Note Repeat, Spot Erase and powerful features in the Piano Roll Editor.

With real-time fades, plug-in menus you can now customise, region-based automation and more, there’s never been a more powerfully flexible Logic Pro.

Panorama controls Logic’s instruments like no other MIDI controller. Pressing Panorama’s Instrument button actvates the instrument home
page which maps 8 commonly used parameters such as those that typically have the biggest impact on the instruments sound.

There is also a dedicated button to Logic’s arpeggiator so you can switch it on or off at any time. Arpeggiation parameters can be assigned to Smart Controls within Logic (not premapped, must be configured by user), so you can move between Mixer mode and Instrument mode on Panorama, jumping from controlling the arpeggitaror one minute and instrument parameters the next.

Panorama P1

The entire control area is available to control Logic instruments with the fader section assigned to envelope parameters and the 2x4 grid of encoders dynamically assigned to everything else. All controllable parameters are available so you don’t have to spend time creating a setup.

In addition, each Logic instrument has been mapped with navigation that activates by simply turning the data control. From the popup menu, select  the desired page, for example filter or LFO, and you’ll have control over the parameters relevant to that section.

Panorama Custom Integration to MainStage 3

MainStage 3 integration

MainStage 3 is the extraordinary live-performance companion app for Logic Pro, and the Nektar Panorama controllers offer custom integration for MainStage is focused on live performance - you no longer need to stare at the computer screen! All the important information is immediately visible on Panorama’s high-resolution TFT display, including Smart Control mappings, parameter values and the current Patch name in large font.

This integration means that owning a Panorama P6 controller and MainsStage 3 is one of the best (and actually quite affordable!) ways to have all the classic retro synth sounds at your disposal! You're able to re-create your favourite electronic sounds from the ’70s and ’80s with an intuitive set of controls. Or bring the authentic sounds of a Hammond B3 organ, Hohner Clavinet D6, or Fender Rhodes, Wurlitzer or Hohner electric piano on stage!

On a budget? Try this...

Nektar Impact LX

If you don't need all the pro features of the Panorama range, the cheaper, more stripped-down Nektar Impact LX range of budget USB MIDI controllers delivers performance way above its class, and is worth your consideration! It's one of the best first controllers for Garageband, too.

From the 49 or 61 note velocity sensitive keyboard, 8 velocity sensitive pads to the rubberized fader caps and low-profile design, Impact LX49 and Impact LX61 feels, looks, performs and is supported like a class act. It has DAW integration with most of the popular DAWs including Logic Pro.

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