Arturia MiniLab Mk 2 Review

Arturia’s all-purpose affordable and stylish portable USB MIDI keyboard controller, the MiniLab Mk 2, features an expressive two-octave keyboard with 25 keys, 8 RGB backlit performance pads, 16 rotary dials, innovative Pitch Bend and Modulation touch control strips, and a suite of included software, in a USB-powered package.

Arturia Minilab Mk2 review on

Similar in size and form-factor to the Akai MPK Mini Mk2 and Novation Launchkey Mk2, what makes Arturia products special is the inclusion of their “True Analog Emulation” (TAE) technology.

True Analog Emulation was the first system of its kind, developed exclusively by Arturia in the early 2000s. It is a set of algorithms that accurately models the circuitry of analog synthesizers – closely reproducing their tones, waveforms, tunings and other characteristics in great detail. This close emulation of classic analog synthesizers and their subsequent implementations of it have greatly helped the company gain increasing market popularity.

Arturia’s TAE and Roland’s version called “Analog Circuit Behavior” (ACB), implemented in the recent Roland Aira, Plug-Out and Boutique ranges – is a powerful form of technology which we will be discussing much further in future on this website.

Starting out as a software company, Arturia entered the hardware synthesizer market in 2012 with the MiniBrute. They have since also turned their attention to the design and manufacture of other electronic musical instruments, including drum machines, various different types of USB MIDI controllers, hardware MIDI sequencers, software synthesizers and mobile apps.
The MiniLab Mk2 is effectively a hybrid synth. In this deceptively small package, Arturia gives you plenty of functionality. To get your virtual recording studio up and running, included are a wealth of professional quality instruments and production software to take your music to exciting new places:

Modular V – an emulation of the circuits of the Moog Modular synths,

CS-80V – based on the Yamaha CS-80,

Mini V – based on the MiniMoog,

Arp 2600V – an emulation of the Arp 2600 hardware,

Jupiter 8V –  a software version of the Roland Jupiter 8,

Prophet V – Sequencial Circuit’s Prophet 5 in software,

Oberheim SEM V – can be seen in its hardware version here,

and Wurlitzer V based on sound of the 1960s classic Wurlitzer organ.

— all courtesy of the Analog Lab Lite software.


MiniLab Mk2 also comes with a powerful music production platform to help transform your musical ideas into fully-fledged, pro-sounding recordings – Ableton Live Lite.

Every one of MiniLab’s controls is automatically assigned to the Ableton functions, via it’s dedicated pre-mapping. Letting you spend less time in the settings menu and more time making music. The MiniLab Mk2 will integrate immediately into your creative process – set your track levels, adjust filters and effects using the rotary dials; launch audio clips, capture drum performances or control playback with the pads.

We are really big fans of Arturia here at Their awesome Spark LE hybrid drum machine, also incorporating TAE technology, is second to none for drum sounds, sequencing and as a drum performance instrument.


The Arturia MiniLab Mk2 main features are:Arturia MiniLab MK2 with RGB lights.
• 25 note velocity-sensitive mini keyboard
• 16 rotary dial encoders
• 8 pads (switchable to make 16 in total)
• Pitch-Bend and Modulation touch strips
• Footswitch input
• Full sized USB socket
• Bus powered, Class compliant
• Works with iPad (camera connection kit required)
• Comes with Amazing sounds from Analog Lab software – 5000 sounds from the best synths

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