Nowadays we have so much incredible gear available at our fingertips. Which is great – until you try to sort out how to operate and control everything in an orderly fashion.
Enter the XSonic Airstep (opens in new tab), a universal foot controller that offers unprecedented flexibility and control of your music-related devices and effects app ecosystem.
The Airstep allows you to control hardware effects and amplifiers with MIDI input, and it can also be used as a traditional relay footswitch to control amps and effects.
What’s more, it can control DAW and effect apps in a mobile phone, tablet or computer through Bluetooth, and even turn a traditional MIDI controller into a wireless one.
The Airstep sports five footswitches on its surface, and can wirelessly expand to five more. Each footswitch can send up to eight different control messages at one time, and the messages can be easily edited via the free Airstep app.
There’s also a massive library of built-in app presets, and all parameters are editable via the app.
Of course, all this functionality only scratches the surface of what the Airstep is capable of.
To truly witness the power of the unit, we hooked up studio whiz and Blue Oyster Cult guitarist Richie Castellano with the Airstep to see if he could get it to control all of his equipment – including guitar, preamp, effects and software – from one central location.
As you can see in the accompanying demo video, Richie achieved his goal, and then some.
In addition to the Airstep, he also utilized the Airstep Lite, a simplified version of its big brother (no USB, traditional MIDI, relay and expression pedal interfaces) that offers fully wireless functionality.
“You can use it as an extension of the Airstep,” Richie says, “or, as I’m using it, as a duplicate.”
In general, he says, “The Airstep is a really easy way to control multiple pieces of gear. You don’t need to use a gigantic MIDI controller. It’s very small, lightweight, it’s metal, you can really stomp on this thing.”
What’s more, Richie adds, “The Airstep Lite is a great addition to this. You can extend the controls or you can mirror it and have all this stuff in one pre-cabled rack with a wireless system.” Then, when it comes to moving from the studio to the venue, he says, “plop the Airstep Lite at the front of the stage and you’re good to go.”
For more information on the Airstep and Airstep Lite, head to XSonic Audio (opens in new tab).