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Beats on the go: Akai's XR20

Akai announces the XR20, a portable beat station.

So you love creating hip-hop beats, right? I mean come on, who doesn't? Let's say one day, a particularly awesome beat pops into your head but you're nowhere near home.

Now you're in a race against time to get home before it's lost forever, deep within walls and walls of other memories. According to Akai, you should not have to worry about such things ever again.


Akai's XR20 Beat Production Station is a portable beat production station that allows you to create hip-hop and R&B beats wherever you are.

The device contains more than 700 preloaded sounds and covers a range of acoustic and electronic drums, percussion, single (one-shot) hits, bass and synth sounds, and instrument samples. It includes an integrated effects engine that features reverb, EQ and compression, enabling users to make complete backing tracks. While the device does not come with a microphone, it does include a mic input for mixing in vocals.

Key features include:

  • More than 700 sounds produced by music company Chronic Music
  • Ninety-nine preset patterns and 99 user patterns
  • Backlit LCD
  • Bright, glowing, backlit pads that follow the beat
  • Microphone input and headphone output
  • Pattern play mode permits different patterns to be triggered from individual pads
  • Drum roll/note repeat feature
  • Powered by batteries or AC adapter

XR20 is now available for a suggested retail price of $499.