My Novation Launchpad Pro Review


About Novation

Co​​​​mpany Details

Novation Digital Music Systems Ltd. is a British musical equipment manufacturer, founded in 1992 by Ian Jannaway and Mark Thompson. 

Today the company specialises in controllers, performance synthesizers, and DJ equipments and interfaces.

Novation Website


My Initial Thoughts

When making music, either for work or your pleasure, it helps a lot if you have the right tools.

Just when you look at Launchpad Pro, you can feel shivers going down your spine.

The colors are overwhelming, and I know that you are waiting to find out more about the features.

In my opinion, you need a versatile, high-quality musical product to be able to produce happily and successfully.

This Novation model is no exception.

Anyway, enough introduction; let’s dive right in.

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Novation Launchpad Pro Professional 64-Pad Grid Performance Instrument for Ableton with MIDI I/O
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Novation Launchpad Pro Professional 64-Pad Grid Performance Instrument for Ableton with MIDI I/O
  • Enhance your live performance with hands-on...
  • The 8x8 grid of RGB pads light up to match...
  • Make dynamic beats, play like an instrument...

Feel, Specifications, Dimensions, and Integrations

Let’s start with the size and measurements. If you were looking for a lightweight launchpad, this may or may not be the right product for you.

It depends - is 1.22 kg heavy for you?

It should not be, not unless you have extremely sensitive back or arms.

In addition to that, the measurements are 260mm width x 260mm depth x 29mm height. That is not too bad, but it could be a bit smaller for easier transporting.

What’s great about this pad is that you can use the USB bus both on Mac and PC.

You get the power supply in the package, but if you want a USB camera adapter, you would have to purchase it separately.

This launchpad is compatible with Ableton Live, and you get the Lite 9 version when you buy it.

However, if you were thinking of using any other version, know that it will not work. 

For some reason, it works with just 9 or higher versions.

Still, the Launchpad Pro can function as a MIDI controller as well, so there is good news also.

The base mat is orange rubber, and it will not get that dirty over time.

You can probably clean it quite easily though.

There is also a front LED strip and one setup button.

The pads are nice and bright, and Novation added 64 RGB backlit velocity and 32 RGB backlit round mode for the buttons.

In addition to that, there are two MIDI sockets, a power supply, a power switch and - best of all - a Kensington Security Slot.

Advanced Features and Performance

Overall, Novation Launchpad Pro does not feature a complicated design.

It is somewhat easy to use, and the functions are fantastic for live performance.

Doing live performances is just what Novation had in mind when making this product.

They seem to have wanted to make it as appealing and compelling as they can, so that’s why there are so many colors.

It is a powerful instrument to have in your arsenal, no doubt about it.

If you use Ableton Live with it, then you can actually see how well it performs.

It matches the colors to your samples, so you can easily keep track of what you are currently playing.

In addition to that, there are endless possibilities when it comes to playing other instruments on this device.

In Note mode, there are drums and other favorites, but you can also use it as a keyboard or as a bass station.

What I like the most about Launchpad Pro is the versatility.

It is an instrument and a mixer, all in one product.

I do not have to connect a mixer pad to it as well because it already has everything I might need to tweak my performance.

I love the fact that I can control just about anything with it - sound effects, instruments, and different plug-ins.

Not only does this make my life a lot easier, but it is also a great atmosphere maker.

Any performance would benefit from this device, no matter what music you make.

Among the many options, there is some stuff that caught my attention as soon as I started using this product.

The colors are rather interesting to me.

I thought they might distract me (I mean, they are pretty vibrant), but they actually let me concentrate better on my music.

Furthermore, I love that I have so much control over my performance and the device in general.

The Ableton Live integrations have many benefits, and controls are just one part of it.

I get to have access to different clips during my performance, and there is just a slight learning curve around it.

They integrated everything seamlessly into the device, and I personally found it to be easy to use.

However, it takes a bit to get used to it if you never used a pad like this one.


Pros & Cons of Launchpad Pro

Benefits

It is perfect for beginners

Offers a lot of value for money

Endless sounds, settings and possibilities

Drawbacks

It is complicated to set the pad up at first

You can use it only with Ableton

Not as powerful as competitor Push 2


My Final Thoughts

Novation Launchpad Pro is a fantastic product if you are looking for something that allows you to work and have fun at the same time.

You can use it even if you are just starting out, although the instructions are necessary for any beginner out there.

Still, once you maneuver around them and set it up, there are almost no limits to your creativity.

I love the fact that all the colors tell which clips you are playing at the moment.

It lets me focus more, and it is aesthetically pleasing too - who doesn’t love bright colors?

I would love if it was a bit smaller. However, then it would not have so many functions.

I can carry it around with no problem at all, but it looks and feels bulky.

Overall, it is not a bad product to have in your studio - it is an excellent value for money, and you will definitely make beautiful music with it.


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