I’m curious to know if you use midi controllers for your DAW and instruments.
I have a couple of sliders and knobs on my midi keyboard controller, but I don’t really use them often. The functionality is just too limited. So I just use a mouse. But recently I’ve been looking at a more dedicated DAW controller second hand. I have several reasons.
The first is that I’d like to have a couple of sliders to control midi instrument parameters (e.g. expression on orchestral instruments or B3 Drawbars) so my orchestrations can sound a bit more realistic. Automation should be easier with a slider than a knob.
The second is that i’d like to see if mixing with real sliders (8 at a time should be enough I’m guessing) makes a difference to the way I work. I read about it, but I haven’t tried it yet.
The third is not so important, but who knows: using transport buttons. When I’m recording I use my phone to directly control the most essential Reaper parameters. That works quite well, so a much bulkier midi controller is not a good option. But I do record midi instruments from behind my desk, in which case a controller might be easier than using a mouse.
Tonight I was eying a second hand Nektar Panorama 1 controller for this purpose (new about 230 euro’s, bidding price starts at 75 euro’s).
I know some of you have real consols - that is obviously not an option for me. I’m curious what your experience is with DAW controllers. Are they just toys that you stop using after a while, or are they a real part of your workflow? And which controllers do you use and for which specific tasks?