Is it worth purchasing an S88 MK2 now?

Benjiholland Member Posts: 2 Newcomer

Hello all,

I’m looking to upgrade my midi keyboard to something with 88 keys and weighted - the S88 MK2 caught my eye and I’m considering it. However after looking on forums and reviews etc, I’ve seen that it’s no longer supported and people are reporting issues. Is it worth buying now? (The MK3 is out of my budget).


  • Maciej Repetowski
    Maciej Repetowski Member Posts: 451 Guru
    edited April 19

    Mk2 is still supported, Mk1 is not.

    There is probably more issues with Mk3 than with Mk2. Mk3 is still very new, whereas Mk2 is mature product with most (if not all) kinks already ironed out.

    However, unless you are on a PC (where compatibility problems are not very common), I would rather invest in Mk3, even if you need to save a bit longer to buy it. Mk3 is THE future.

  • Richard Vetro
    Richard Vetro Member Posts: 15 Member

    I have the S61 MK3.

    Great Keyboard for accessing NI ecosystem, But don't get rid of your old keyboard.

    You will need it control your DAW, third party VST's, plugins and any other automation outside of NI Wrapper software. I am using a Nektar P1 to control my DAW.

    The Kontrol MK3 series of keyboards does not have the ability to midi learn any computer. It is not an actual midi controller. You can not create midi templates and assign knob to parameter in your software.

    They say the will fix this problem in an update, But it's been more then half a year since the release date (Sept 12th 2023).

    They probably forgot about the issue already of will charge a fee to have the solution to be fixed.

  • Benjiholland
    Benjiholland Member Posts: 2 Newcomer

    Really appreciate the comments both - thank you for your help!

  • PoorFellow
    PoorFellow Moderator Posts: 3,299 mod

    I concur with what Maciej Repetowski wrote above.

    With respect to Richard Vetro , referring to the S61 MK3, writing that : "It is not an actual midi controller." then that is completely false. The Kontrol keyboards are in fact midi controllers (Please refer to pages 72 to 74 , 10. MIDI Mode, in the manual !) but also a lot more than just that ! N.I. calls it a "smart MIDI keyboard controller" (As seen in the name of the web page for the S-Series MK3 keyboards !) Also , the S-Series MK3 is not only Midi 1.0 controllers but also Midi 2.0 and Polyphonic 'aftertouch' compatible with MPE (MIDI Polyphonic Expression) plugins as it is mentioned in the FAQ ! However it is correct that some features might not be implemented yet and some of it appears as if it is delayed !. Never the less then I am rather sure that N.I. is going to deliver on their promises with respect to the functionality of the S-Series Mk3 keyboards !

    As for your original question about the S88 MK2 keyboard (Is it worth buying now?) , then that question of course depends entirely on you and your expectations. The S88 MK2 keyboard is not a poorer keyboard today than it was 6 months ago, it will still have the same advantages as it originally had, but time flies, so when you compare and if your expectations has changed then you might not have your expectations met by a keyboard that is one generation old , but only you knows if that is so for you !

    If you are satisfied with what the MK2 has to offer and don't want 'all the new stuff and features' then indeed why not get a MK2 , but if you are going to spend an eternity in regrets that you didn't get this or that then you ought to do what is suggested by Maciej above : save a little longer ! Also , at last sale then the S-Series Mk3 keyboards came bundled with Komplete Bundle software (at some extra cost) , so there is that also to consider (there most likely will be more sales this year also !, the first I suspect will be in a couple of months maybe)..

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