For people who mix in the computer there’s often a yearning for a bit of hands-on action – a mouse and keyboard shortcuts can only go so far. A DAW controller, then, is an attractive proposition but they can often be very expensive or a bit too chunky and take over your entire desktop. Asparion hope to have a solution for that with their D400 DAW controller. What I immediately like about it is the modest footprint, and the fact that it’s not really much bigger than the 8 touch sensitive motorised faders. It looks like it could go on your desk and not be in the way when you’re using your computer in a more traditional fashion.
The D400T is your starting point, a transport controller offering the usual play/stop/record functions and nice big jog wheel, but also adding a bunch of rotary encoders and assignable buttons to adapt to your workflow. You can then add up to 8 of the D400F fader boxes to give a whopping total of 64 faders. The build quality appears to be very good – they make a lot of noise about the aluminium chassis and reams of LED lights. Each unit can be connected with a 1m extension cable so there’s no restriction on how you arrange your desk – I like the versatility of that.
Here’s some technical details:
- 8 endless rotary encoders with snap
- 4 LED rings with 15 LEDs each
- 21 programmable LED push buttons
- jog wheel with shuttle
- 2x 6,35mm sockets for expression and sustain pedal
- USB B 2.0 connector
- connector for extension
- 238 x 137 x 33mm (chassis)
- extension for the D400T, no stand-alone use
- 8 touch-sensitive 100mm ALPS motor faders with a resolution of up to 12bit (4000 steps)
- 24 programmable LED push buttons
- 9V power supply
- connector for another extension
- 238 x 238 x 33mm (chassis)
The D400 is compatible with Windows, OSX and Linux and costs 959 USD for a bundle of both the D400T and D400F otherwise the D400F is 579 USD, the D400T is 429 USD.
More information: https://www.asparion.de