In The Spotlight: M-Audio Trigger Finger Pro

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In The Spotlight: M-Audio Trigger Finger Pro


Step Through It

Not just a USB MIDI controller, the Trigger Finger Pro also acts as a step sequencer either in conjunction with software or as a stand-alone device. You can then send MIDI information to another drum machine or hardware synthesizer to be driven by the 64-step sequencer within the Trigger Finger Pro. This is especially handy for those performers who are operating a range of compact synths and drum machines within a live set and need editable sequencing in a hardware format. As a hardware controller it can become the central hub for your production both in the studio and live on stage. The 16 pressure sensitive pads are multiplied by four quickly recalled banks and the fader and rotary encoders allow for a wide range of effects and functions to be controlled from the work surface. Incorporating a transport control section as well, you have the tools on the top panel to allow you to work and perform from a central platform without relying on the mouse to do much of the work.


The Wrap-Up

Many users will agree that it is in the bundled software that the unit really comes to life. By this, I am talking about Arsenal. A sort of bridging software that allows you to use your computer almost as the engine for a sound library that is completely controlled by the Trigger Finger Pro. With Arsenal, it becomes a wrapper for any VSTi’s you like when running it in standalone mode. You do not need to launch your DAW, but instead just access all the sounds and parameters of your VSTi’s as Arsenal acts as the host for them. Essentially, this makes the Trigger Finger Pro a synthesizer that encompasses the power of your computer’s CPU for its sound bank. This makes it ideal for DJs who want to integrate live production into their sets without having to run a DAW on their laptop.


When working on the Trigger Finger Pro, the LCD screens relay information back from Arsenal and the VSTi’s being hosted within it so you can use it as a browser for the sounds you want to incorporate in your set. When recording, this also enables you to really disconnect yourself from the computer and treat it more like a hardware groove production centre. That said, if you do want to work within the confines of a DAW you are able to run Arsenal within that DAW for a ridiculous amount of sonic combinations. Take the addition of Hybrid, the software synthesizer and the included Air Drums software too, and you have a total production package.


These are all great features that make the Trigger Finger Pro a worthy addition to any existing setup, or as the base of a new production and performance rig. With the Australian dollar struggling against the US dollar at the moment, it comes as some comforting news to find out that the Trigger Finger Pro has gone against the grain and has actually come down in price in recent months with a new RRP of $499, around half the price of similar devices on offer from other manufacturers. M-Audio has delivered big time with the Trigger Finger Pro and done it at an exceptional price too. What’s more, it comes with around 8Gb of sounds, many chosen from top DJs to be included with the Trigger Finger Pro package. Couple this with the additional expansion packs that are available through the M-Audio website and you have one powerful, versatile and comprehensive studio and live controller to explore when considering your options. 


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