5 Useful Tips for NI Komplete Kontrol

The Komplete Kontrol software works well with all hardware but comes into its own when paired with Komplete Kontrol S-Series keyboards. Here's 5 tips from Hollin Jones on how to get the most from it.  

Find out more about Komplete Kontrol S-Series from the NI here.

Read our complete review of Komplete Kontrol S-Series here.

Tip 1 - Build Custom Maps

NI’s free downloadable Controller Editor application works with many of its hardware products and lets you create custom MIDI maps. Hardware like Maschine and Komplete Kontrol can work in General MIDI mode as well as in NI’s own integrated modes so you can use them with any other software or hardware. It’s really easy to use: just connect the hardware and fire up the editor then make assignments from the panel on the right and save the results as a template that are stored on the keyboard itself. 

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Tip 2 - I see Colors!

The Light Guide features of the Komplete Kontrol hardware tie in with some instruments in Komplete 10 and also some Kontakt instruments from Komplete 9 if they have had the latest updates applied. In this example you can see an instance of Polyplex—a new drum instrument—with each of its sound slots assigned a color. These are mirrored on the lights of the keyboard so you can instantly see which key will trigger which sound. This also works with some Kontakt maps so you can see which keys are modifiers, triggers, switches and regular notes. 

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Tip 3 - See the Light

Speaking of Light Guide, the scale and key features of Komplete Kontrol can also give you some visual help when you use the chord, easy and arpeggiator modes. If you put the keyboard into a mode where it is changing the mapping of the keys, this will be reflected in the lights above the keys. So in this example, I have switched the keyboard into Easy key mode and the scale of C and also activated Chord mode. The keyboard has deactivated all the black notes (the ‘easy’ part of the equation) and their lights are correspondingly unlit. And because I have activated Chord mode in C, it is showing me the note of middle C as the first note I should press, by lighting it more brightly than the others. 

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Tip 4 - Expand your View

By default the Komplete Kontrol app has quite a minimal interface to save space but you can change this to see more information. If you go to the View menu, you can switch on the Perform Panel, which shows currently selected performance parameters and settings like whether the arpeggiator is on and if so what its settings are, what octave setting the keyboard is set to use and so on. If you were to click on the Additional and Edit view options or use the corresponding keyboard shortcuts, you would be able to see an even more expanded view listing the installed libraries in a more regular Kontakt-like way. 

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Tip 5 - Tweak the Hardware

If you go into the Preferences > General section of the Komplete Kontrol app and then the Hardware tab you can tweak how the hardware behaves. Settings include velocity scaling, Light Guide on or off, Pitch Strip responsiveness and extensive modulation strip behaviors. So it’s easy to configure the physical controls of the hardware to respond to your liking. 

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Find out more about Komplete Kontrol S-Series from the NI here.

Read our complete review of Komplete Kontrol S-Series here.

Hollin Jones was classically trained as a piano player but found the lure of blues and jazz too much to resist. Graduating from bands to composition then production, he relishes the chance to play anything with keys. A sometime lecturer in videographics, music production and photography post production, Hollin has been a freelance w... Read More

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