• 5.0 out of 5 stars

    Very impressed

    • Written by Benjamin H from London

    The Lightpad M is a very unique product and musical tool. Sharing DNA with grid/pad controllers, XY controllers, and, of course, the Seaboard/Haaken Continuum lineage of expressive multidimensional instruments, there is a lot of potential packed into a very small unit with a very simple interface.

    It has a nice weight to it and feels sturdy and well manufactured. The most immediately striking feature is the soft, tactile surface. Overall, it’s clearly a very well made bit of kit, so top marks in this department. Setup was very straightforward, with clear instructions included in the box.

    In terms of playability, I’m impressed. The tactile surface is responsive and springy enough to play drums and percussion, smooth enough to control effects and automation, and enjoyable enough that I frequently find myself lost in playing with whatever I have it assigned to. I can’t imagine it’s something I’ll ever settle on a single use for, but I can see it enhancing my workflow in a number of ways.

    ROLI’s Equator also deserves a mention. This multi-expressive behemoth of a sampling-synthesiser with FM and wavetable is in my opinion almost worth the price of the Lightpad M itself, and it’s bundled for free. I’m not personally the biggest fan of the preset sounds, but the synthesis engine is insanely powerful and works seamlessly with ROLI’s MPE (Multidimensional Polyphonic Expression).

    All in all, I’m very happy with the Lightpad M both as a creative tool and a functional MIDI controller. Whilst there are a few little UX issues with the setup, I feel these are mostly teething problems and are beyond outweighed by the positives of the device. I’d happily recommend it to any musician or producer looking for a new way to interact with sound.

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  • 5.0 out of 5 stars

    The best just got even better.

    • Written by Perry S from Purton

    With the original LightPad I was amazed by how much I was able to do and how stimulating and adaptable it was to anything I'd find myself working on as a session player, producer or engineer. The LightpadM does it with greater sensitivity and a general all-around improvement on the already stellar design of the original for a slight fraction more.

    Pound for pound it is vast strides ahead the original. Although still responsive the original had a harder, less comfortable surface; the LightPadM is beautifully receptive and sensitive and has what can only be described as a delicious "squidge" to it. The new waved Seaboardesque surface makes slides more controlled and responsive. They've boosted the lights which is invaluable on a sunlit festival stage where lights are hard to make out, with the M they shine EVERYWHERE. The overall impression is that ROLI have spoken to the players, seen how to improve and not hesitated in catering to the eager musician even further.

    For newcomers BLOCKS are exactly what you want them to be, a control surface that is as portable and innovative as it is responsive and adaptive. All ROLI products are built with soft silicone which senses 5 dimensions of touch from bending to sliding and uses this to add a level of expression that surpasses any controller. From slides and vibrato on a double bass to the swell on horns there isn't much you can't achieve with a push or wobble of your finger. As someone whose musical foundations were built playing guitar - an instrument dependant on bending and striking the strings in different ways, ROLI make the only controllers that rather than limit my expression encourages it, allowing you to build sounds from the ground up based on your individual style and feel.

    1 of 1 people found this useful

  • 5.0 out of 5 stars

    Absolutely love it, just perfect.

    • Written by Dean A from London

    All the Roli products are pretty game changing - but the new block is the coolest thing I’ve bought in years. Completely changed the way I write and perform, mainly because of how sensitive it is, and because I can literally keep it in my jacket pocket and compose anywhere, tube or a plane or coffee shop.

    Lightpad M is everything I wanted the original Lightpaad to be, In that it is now more than sensitive enough to have become my primary method of inputting drums in studio. Ghost notes and intricate patterns are now perfectly playable, just as they would be on a real drum kit. The level of sensitivity has made putting keys, synths or pads a really exciting process, as I’ve now got so much control over every parameter of my sound. I’ve always hated feeling like I have to fight my midi controller in order to get what I’m playing to sound natural. The block sort of bridges the gap between digital and analogue, finally giving midi that human touch .

    All in all, it’s the dream midi controller, intuitive, easy and reliable, whilst being sensitive enough to handle pretty complex stuff. It’s also a dream on stage as I’ve literally swapped out my huge midi controllers for a couple of these and a Seaboard block - cannot recommend this enough to any musician, most exciting instruments I’ve really seen in years.

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