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Alesis ControlPad - USB/MIDI Percussion Pad Controller

B&H # ALCP Mfr # CONTROLPAD
No Longer Available

The ControlPad from Alesis, is a USB/MIDI percussion controller in a compact form that is equally at home, both as a performance instrument and a MIDI programming tool for studio recording. Applications include programming of drum and percussion parts with a MIDI sequencer, studio recording and live performance.

The controller features eight velocity sensitive pads with gum rubber surfaces for excellent stick response, as well as two trigger inputs for connecting external pads. Additionally, there are two switch pedal inputs to accommodate an open and closed hi-hat function, as well as kick drum.

Percussion setups are stored to internal memory and are accessible via MIDI program change commands. In addition to being USB bus-powered, the ControlPad includes an AC adapter for stand-alone use.

USB/MIDI drum controller for studio or live use
Eight high-quality, velocity-sensitive percussion pads
Pad sensitivity adjustment
USB Plug-and-Play connectivity (no drivers necessary)
USB bus-powered (no power supply necessary when connected to a computer)
Two trigger inputs for connecting external pads (compatible with the Alesis Drum Pad and Cymbal Pad expansion kits)
Two switch pedal inputs and up/down footswitch input
MIDI I/O
Stores MIDI setups with program change capability
Includes BFD Lite, a virtual drum module from FXpansion
PC and Mac compatible
Power adapter included for use without a computer
Triggers 8 Velocity-Sensitive Pads
Key Layout Not applicable
Controllers No
Connectors 2 x MIDI (In/Out)
1 x USB
2 x 1/4" TS phone External Trigger Inputs
1 x 1/4" TS phone Footswitch Input (kick)
1 x 1/4" TS phone Footswitch Input (hi-hat open/close)
1 x 1/4" TRS phone Up/Down Value Footswitch
Dimensions (WxDxH) 17" x 13 3/4" x 3" (432 x 349 x 76 mm)
Specialties Comes with twenty presets that can be overwritten
Alesis ControlPad - USB/MIDI Percussion Pad Controller
  • External Power
  • USB Cable
  • One (1) Year Warranty
  • REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    AlesisControlPad Percussion Controller
     
    4.3

    (based on 16 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (6)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (9)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (0)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (1)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (0)

    93%

    of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

    Pros

    • Easy to use (12)
    • Versatile (8)
    • Compact (4)

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Home studio (9)
      • Amateur recording (6)
      • Performances (4)
        • Reviewer Profile:
        • Professional musician (5), Experienced (4), Novice (3)
        • Primary use:
        • Personal (3)

      Most Liked Positive Review

       

      Great bit of Kit!

      Was looking for a compact yet realistic trigger pad surface that didn't cost the earth and at the same time wasn't some cheap and nasty piece of kit from Asia. Alesis has been a...Read complete review

      Was looking for a compact yet realistic trigger pad surface that didn't cost the earth and at the same time wasn't some cheap and nasty piece of kit from Asia. Alesis has been a respected brand for many many years so that in combination with B&H's unbeatible price made the purchase a no-brainer. The Pad can be mounted using an adapter to a standard "heavy duty" cymbal or tom stand and because it has a well sized playing surface can be used with standard drum sticks, there are many Youtube videos showing how people are using it as the centre of their e-drum KIT. With some optional foot triggers for Kick and cymbal it really rocks. My advice is you take some time to get the sensitivity and control parameters for the pad trigerrs adjusted for your style of playing, as this helps to overcome any mis-triggerings and the frustration that that can bring into play. There are lots of finger size trigger pads around but I actually prefer to use sticks. It comes with BFD Lite and also EZ-Drummer (Toontrack)Lite, so if your happy with the features of either of these then you can upgrade to the full version, there both very comprehensive, but that doesn't stop you from using other stuff as it is fully USB (no driver needed and cable and Pwr supply included) and MIDI compliant and works on Windows XP-W7 or MAC. For the price I paid its a steal. Thanks B&H for making great technology affordable and accessible, [...] Cheers The Boy from Oz. Only gave it 4 stars because I haven't had it for long so can't comment on support, that's if I need it.

      VS

      Most Liked Negative Review

       

      has potential

      Great concept...Very inexpensive when compared to it's roland counterparts. But you get what you pay for. Pros include usb connection, 3 pedal inputs, 2 external trigger inputs, and really easy...Read complete review

      Great concept...Very inexpensive when compared to it's roland counterparts. But you get what you pay for. Pros include usb connection, 3 pedal inputs, 2 external trigger inputs, and really easy to set up kits. I use ableton's session drums. There's really only one con, but it's a big one. A lot of the time when you hit 2 or more pads at the same time, one doesn't trigger. According to alesis this is necessary to prevent cross talk between the pads. I ultimately sold mine and got the full dm6 kit instead. If you just want something to trigger samples or basic drum patterns it's great but if you're serious about using it as an electronic kit, don't waste your time with this thing.

      Reviewed by 16 customers

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      Displaying reviews 1-16

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      4.0

      Decent

      By AVBN5000

      from Chicago, IL

      About Me Professional Musician

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Compact
      • Easy To Use
      • Effective
      • Great price
      • Great Response
      • Versatile

      Cons

      • On Off Triggers Only

      Best Uses

      • Amateur Recording
      • Events
      • Home Studio
      • Jamming out
      • Mobile DJ
      • Performances
      • Professional Recording

      Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

      Response is great and the amount of pads along with expansion abilities makes this a nice little product to pick up. I use this primarily for studio work, but I can see the benifits to bringing this on the road for traveling musicians. Fairly low latency helps a good deal laying down tracks. I didnt give it 5 stars because the hi-hat trigger is not continuous, it is only ON or OFF so getting a realistic feel for the hi-hat is impossible for an experienced drummer. However, for anyone who enjoys playing drums in general, this is a nice peice of equipment. I currently have the alesis hi-hat pedal and bass drum trigger with a double bassdrum pedal (mapex). The virtual sounds I use are Superior drummer, battery, and abbey roads percussion.I havent used these kinds of equipment before and I found myself easily able to navigate and setup my custom set to my liking within about 15-20 minutes or so. The threshold intensity settings are decent and give you a fairly good range to work with.For the price, it's unbeatable.

      Share this review

       
      4.0

      Great for starters, only one thing

      By Jose_H

      from Bensalem, PA

      About Me Novice

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Compact
      • Easy To Use
      • Low Distortion

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Amateur Recording
        • Home Studio

        Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

        Great control pad for starters like myself, everything works great the only small detail I must point out is that the softwares for this machine to work are quite pricey! But overall worth the money.

        Share this review

         
        4.0

        A great tool for songwriters...

        By Liam

        from Lansdale, PA

        About Me Professional Musician

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Compact
        • Easy To Use

        Cons

        • Kick Drum Input Is Switch
        • Not Terribly Configurable

        Best Uses

        • Home Studio

        Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

        I use the ControlPad to sequence songs instead of playing keyboard drums, and it meets almost all of my needs quite well. I'm not a drummer, but I do play kit on occasion. Rather than micing up a kit for song ideas, I generally use EZDrummer or Superior Drummer to track. The drag and drop functionality of EZD is nice, but to much click and drag to change things... enter the ControlPad.

        Its footprint is tiny, but the playing surface is an adequate size. It's responsive enough, and easy to dial in to your playing style for the most part. And it's the best price for its function that you're going to find. If you're a drummer, you might find room to critique its responsiveness, but a drummer would likely only use a device like this as an aux pad. For my purposes, it's awesome.

        It does have a few hangups, though. My largest complaint is the kick input. It's the only input that isn't susceptible to the built in cross-talk canceling - making it possible to hit the kick and a crash at the same time. But it's a SWITCH INPUT. Meaning no piezo triggers allowed... meaning no dynamic on the kick drum. I sent the first one back because I thought it was malfunctioning, but this is by design, and doesn't make a lof sense to me. You can use a sustain pedal to trigger it, but I can't do double strokes on a sustain pedal, so I had to build a switch kick drum trigger. Which, for the record, is SUPER easy to do. Other than that, my only complaints are the limited tweakability, even compared to the Trigger|io (which I also have, and love), and the fact that it won't play nice with EZDrummer in my DAW, so I had to configure Superior to get adequate hi hat control - not the fault of Alesis, but EZD Lite did come with it, so you'd think they'd get along.

        Anyway, for the buck it's a GREAT value, love mine, and having the pads so close together means I can play fills I can't play on a grown up kit. :) I'd definitely replace it if I lost mine. It's a win.

        Share this review

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Cautiously Optimistic

        By Greylow

        from Los Angeles

        About Me Experienced

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Compact
        • Easy To Use
        • Versatile

        Cons

        • Needs a stand

        Best Uses

        • Amateur Recording
        • Home Studio
        • Practice

        Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

        I'd read a lot of lukewarm reviews about this piece, but the features and price here at B&H put it in a class by itself and worth the gamble.I'm not a drummer, but as a rhythm guitarist, songwriter, and home recordist, I have a natural interest. Plus, I've always found working with loops and pre-fab midi tracks to be too confining. Why not?For me, the unit couldn't be easier to set up...but I'm not using it for any complex operations, simply its basic purpose as a midi trigger for software drums. Changing individual pads as well as entire sets takes mere seconds. It should be noted that the unit is advertised as coming with a lite version of BFD..that is no longer the case. It now comes with a lite version of EZ Drummer. I've already got EZ, so no added bonus there. However, the pads are set up for a few different sets - none of them EZ. Big deal. It's going to take you about a minute to change them all to your own preferences.I haven't experienced any of the false-triggering or lack of sensitivity that others have complained about, but I freely admit that as a non-drummer I may not be allowed a vote. One thing: the FEEL of sticks on these rubber pads is...unpleasant. Very plasticky. (If that was a real word). However, I picked up some Corpsmaster sticks with rubber tips that solved the problem. Now, I'm having a blast. I can play whenever I want and my wife and neighbors don't hate me. What's not to like?

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        4.0

        Great product. Simple controller.

        By Bennett

        from Brooklyn

        Verified Buyer

        Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

        velocity sensitivity needs getting used to. Multiple kits are nice. Programing pads are easy. Sleek.

        Share this review

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Bang for Few Bucks!!!

        By T.M. Riddle

        from Philadelphia, Pa

        About Me Experienced

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy To Use

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Home Studio

          Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

          The product works exactly as expected. I simply connected via USB to my computer and started triggering sound libraries within my DAW. After a little tinkering with the sensitivity and assigning a few custom kits, I have set it, and can forget it.

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          (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Works just as expected

          By nilrem

          from Wisconsin

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Easy to set up

          Cons

            Best Uses

              Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

              I bought this unit to replace a drumkat. I wanted a drum controller with a smaller foot print and easier controls. The ControlPad fits all my expectations. Latency is a little slower than I'd like when using it with my laptop, but I think that's an issue with my soundcard not the ControlPad. Make sure you tweak sensitivity to your playing style to get the most out of it.

              • Primary use:
              • Personal
              • Computer Platform:
              • PC

              Share this review

               
              5.0

              Nice piece for the money!!!!!

              By CEDB

              from Dallas, Texas

              About Me Engineering Musician, Song writer composer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs
              • Easy to Customize
              • I mainley use the Control
              • Versatile

              Cons

              • Difficult to Navigate
              • Navigation needs work

              Best Uses

              • Educational Purposes

              Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

              I mainley use the Control Pad for writing my drum patterns into my old Roland R-70 Human Rythm Composer drum machine and recording percussion parts from the drum machine in real time into Pro Tools using standard midi cables. When using the USB connection, it was a simple plug in to the Mac and play any of my other software drum programs.....Works great in all scenerios. Playing the pads with sticks vs. pressing the pads on the drum machine makes a HUGE difference for ME. The inclusion of Midi In AND Midi Out jacks are a plus as well. Nice piece for the money. Navigation could be improved.

              • Primary use:
              • Personal
              • Computer Platform:
              • Mac

              Share this review

              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Great value, small size

              By lsrst

              from Norway/Sweden

              About Me New to drumming, Serious hobby musician

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs
              • Easy to Customize

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Jamming with monitors
                • Playing along to music
                • Recording

                Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

                Terrific product if you wish to control your drums from software (I'm on a mac, no prob) of choice (in my case I have winded up using ESX24). No drum brain = you need a laptop. On the other hand, you are not paying extra for built in samples.

                These pads really delivers when plugged with a nice virtual drum. It's quite small, but not too small. I'm in the EU, so the adapter does not fit here, but I power it with USB. A lot less expensive AND better than the options available in the EU.

                The ControlPad is said to be delivered with BFD Lite. Mine didn't - it included Toon Track. Was not that impressed. I guess for the price, it's good that something comes along at all.

                Does not include pedals. Beware, pedal connections are ON/OFF, not velocity sensitive.

                Would recommend this product.

                • Primary use:
                • Personal
                • Computer Platform:
                • Mac

                Share this review

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                Great for Live performances

                By Brendan

                from Washington, DC

                About Me Professional Musician

                Verified Reviewer

                Pros

                • Easy To Use
                • Versatile

                Cons

                • Finicky false triggers

                Best Uses

                • Amateur Recording
                • Events
                • Performances
                • Professional Recording

                Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

                Bought this control pad to trigger samples while I'm playing my acoustic drumset live on stage with my band. I use it both with USB and MIDI (for USB I use Abelton Live and for MIDI I use my MPC 1000 sampler/sequencer.) Very easy to use and setup, does exactly what you'd expect. Sensitivity is great, and everything from velocity to sensitivity to not assignments is easily customizable.

                Note that this is just a control pad, and does not have any internal sounds. For me this is exactly what I wanted since I use separate hardware and software samplers- but if you want an all in one unit, you'll have to pay more.

                One thing I did, which I recommend anyone do before buying any piece of gear, is download the user manual and read up on the product before purchasing. It's free, from the Alesis website. This way you can familiarize yourself with the controls and capabilities of the Pad before you get it, and once you get it you can set it up and play with it right away.

                The only reason I'm not giving it 5 stars is because I've had a small issue from time to time with mysterious false triggering. I think it's because it's receiving vibrations from my snare drum, which I placed the Control Pad close to for easy access. I'm going to keep experimenting with moving the pad around my kit so that I can avoid all false triggers.

                Share this review

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                2.0

                has potential

                By elivaughn

                from Michigan

                About Me Experienced

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Easy To Use

                Cons

                • Poor Quality Construction

                Best Uses

                • Amateur Recording
                • Home Studio

                Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

                Great concept...Very inexpensive when compared to it's roland counterparts. But you get what you pay for. Pros include usb connection, 3 pedal inputs, 2 external trigger inputs, and really easy to set up kits. I use ableton's session drums. There's really only one con, but it's a big one. A lot of the time when you hit 2 or more pads at the same time, one doesn't trigger. According to alesis this is necessary to prevent cross talk between the pads. I ultimately sold mine and got the full dm6 kit instead. If you just want something to trigger samples or basic drum patterns it's great but if you're serious about using it as an electronic kit, don't waste your time with this thing.

                Share this review

                 
                4.0

                Good Hobbyist drum pad

                By Jaus

                from Middletown, MD

                About Me Novice

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Easy To Use

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Amateur Recording
                  • Home Studio

                  Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

                  The manual seems to have a few inaccuracies, but the Alesis Control Pad is pretty much plug and play. Simple to set up with Cubase LE (not included). Midi controller only , no built in sounds.

                  The BFD software that is bundled with the unit has a bit of a learning curve, but has a lot of features and works well with Cubase LE.

                  Pads have decent response and sensitivity which is adjustable. Hi-Hat control via a pedal is on/off, but the BFD software has a 'variable' Hi-Hat switch that will cause BFD to interpret any hi-hat hit as an open hat when the pedal is up, and a closed hat when the pedal is down.

                  Pad cross talk is minimal with medium sensitiviy.

                  All in all I'm pleased with the unit.

                  Share this review

                   
                  4.0

                  Great bit of Kit!

                  By The Boy from Oz

                  from Oz

                  About Me Novice

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Easy To Use
                  • Versatile

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Home Studio
                    • Performances

                    Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

                    Was looking for a compact yet realistic trigger pad surface that didn't cost the earth and at the same time wasn't some cheap and nasty piece of kit from Asia. Alesis has been a respected brand for many many years so that in combination with B&H's unbeatible price made the purchase a no-brainer. The Pad can be mounted using an adapter to a standard "heavy duty" cymbal or tom stand and because it has a well sized playing surface can be used with standard drum sticks, there are many Youtube videos showing how people are using it as the centre of their e-drum KIT. With some optional foot triggers for Kick and cymbal it really rocks. My advice is you take some time to get the sensitivity and control parameters for the pad trigerrs adjusted for your style of playing, as this helps to overcome any mis-triggerings and the frustration that that can bring into play. There are lots of finger size trigger pads around but I actually prefer to use sticks. It comes with BFD Lite and also EZ-Drummer (Toontrack)Lite, so if your happy with the features of either of these then you can upgrade to the full version, there both very comprehensive, but that doesn't stop you from using other stuff as it is fully USB (no driver needed and cable and Pwr supply included) and MIDI compliant and works on Windows XP-W7 or MAC. For the price I paid its a steal. Thanks B&H for making great technology affordable and accessible, [...] Cheers The Boy from Oz. Only gave it 4 stars because I haven't had it for long so can't comment on support, that's if I need it.

                    Share this review

                     
                    5.0

                    Alesis ControlPad is a breeze

                    By J. Ohm

                    from Seattle, WA

                    About Me Experienced

                    Verified Reviewer

                    Pros

                    • Easy To Use
                    • Versatile

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Home Studio
                      • Mobile DJ
                      • Performances

                      Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

                      straight out of the box, i had the Alesis ControlPad up and running 100% in about five minutes. and i didn't even need the manual to figure out the basic functions. plug the usb in, turn it on, wait for computer to "add new hardware", automatically install drivers, open your favorite drum machine in your DAW of choice, and play! it took about 10-15 minutes to install the BFD lite and all it's components. very cool program! i will definitely be taking advantage of the upgrade to the pro version. also, the pads seem to get softer and more responsive the more i play on it. recommended.

                      Share this review

                       
                      5.0

                      Very good!!!!!

                      By Paulinho Rocha

                      from Salvador-Bahia-Brasil.

                      About Me Professional Musician

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Easy To Use
                      • Versatile

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Live and recording

                        Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

                        I use controlpad to trigger samples and loops that are in the notebook and record the drums of my pre-production. And he is very good. The sensitivity of the pads is great and he has several parameters for adjustments. Really good.

                        Share this review

                         
                        5.0

                        awesome playability

                        By Jacob in Boulder Creek

                        from Boulder Creek, CA

                        About Me Professional Musician

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Easy To Use
                        • Great value
                        • Responsive
                        • Versatile

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                          • Accompaniment
                          • Home recording

                          Comments about Alesis ControlPad Percussion Controller:

                          I bought this as a companion to BFD2 and it works amazingly well.

                          I plugged it in to my mac via USB, fired up BFD and it immediately worked. BFD2 has a preset named "ControlPad" once I clicked this everything was set up and ready.

                          Tweaking and setting up the sensitivity is very easy.

                          This product is meant for drum sticks (not fingers) and is very heavy duty.

                          The two trigger inputs are great to have. I have one hooked to a kick pedal and I also am using the High-hat pedal input.

                          Great product and nice integration with BFD2.

                          Share this review

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