M-audio Oxygen 49 vs. Samson Graphite 49- Which is the better 49-Key controller?

Choosing between keyboard controllers isn’t difficult once you learn to evaluate features, objectively looking at what each option has to offer. M-audio Oxygen 49 vs. Samson Graphite 49, does just that for these industry favorites. Take a look.

If you are having difficulty choosing between the best 49-Key controllers, then you are not alone. Considering all the brands and models of keyboard controllers on the market, of course the search might get confusing. Here you will find a comprehensive review and guide to two well known and widely used controllers. Examining their features, functionalities and flaws, this article aims to guide you through M-audio Oxygen 49 vs. Samson Graphite 49. Read on for more.

M-audio Oxygen 49 vs. Samson Graphite 49

M-audio Oxygen 49
Samson Graphite 49
synth-action velocity-sensitive keys
Semi weighted keys
USB bus drive powered controller
USB Bus MIDI controller
Windows and Mac Compatible
IOs and Windows compatible
Premium software bundle included
Komplete Elements 8 software inclusion
9.56 x 32.04 x 3.7 in
12.5 x 33.5 x 5 in
8.8 lbs

M-audio Oxygen 49

M-audio Oxygen 49 featuring 49 sensitive keys, is simply described as the next generation controller that offers high functionality in addition to innovating portability. It is 6.4lbs USB powered controller with a wide variety of features and capabilities. Take a look.

Starting off is the exterior and build quality on the M-audio Oxygen 49 which features pro solid and reliable build. The hardware integrations on this instrument significantly contribute to the high performance nature of this instrument. In fact, the unit features 8 velocity sensitive trigger pads, 8 assignable knobs and 9 faders to help address multiple aspects of performance. With its synth-action key bed of the M-audio Oxygen 49 features natural profile keys for intuitive and customized influence. The MIDI controller also features core in-demand tools for expressive and immersive output. Thanks to its conveniently placed modulation wheels and pitch bend, the M-audio Oxygen 49 is very easy to use.

M-audio Oxygen 49’s drum pads offer expansive creativity, with the aforementioned customizable knobs and faders working to offer impressive control over your music. For added value, this MIDI controller also features dedicated octave down and up buttons to tweak the melodic range without turning to your mouse. Out of the box integration allows users to utilize the controller in a variety of ways and environments. For instance, the Direct link feature on this controller which maps the instrument to the parameters and different virtual instruments ensures you have tactile control over multiple software deices.

This MIDI controller evidently features premium software suite for comprehensive support. If you are looking for a portable customized keyboard for a better performance, the M-audio Oxygen 49 could be ideal for your needs.


  • Great value for money
  • Very easy to use
  • Easy integration with DirectLink and supporting software
  • Impressive compatibility options
  • Pro quality and pro tools
  • Innovative features


  • Does not feature physical MIDI ports


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Samson Graphite 49

The Samson Graphite 49 USB MIDI controller is the ultimate balance between production and performance control. It is a useful and quite accessible instrument which features an intuitive a variety of quality exterior design features including the semi-weighted 49-key keyboard with an incorporated sleek finish.

Thanks to the wide variety of features and controllers, you can access a reasonable scope of modular control with the Samson Graphite 49. Some of inclusions on the MIDI control surface are: the faders, encoders and a custom button set up, not to mention the 4 wide velocity-sensitive trigger pads for a customized and dynamic control of sound. With these, you can achieve a satisfactory level of musical expression with this controller. You may even customize the controller function for maximum control over your DAW in addition to virtual instruments.

There is a wide variety of controls for different users to express their kind of tone. For instance the Samson Graphite 49 will allow you to control multiple voices simultaneously, as well as record bass, pad, string and lead tones. It is designed to facilitate your room to create, with the model featuring up to 4 zones for layering and splitting sound.

Still on the exterior and build quality: this Graphite 49 is designed with a compact feel which makes it ideal for studio use and live performances. This instrument allows you to take charge of your DAW and any virtual instruments with different customizable controls. For example, thanks to its 4 large trigger pads, this MIDI controller you can tap out drum beats and develop unique samples. It also features a large LCD display to showcase real-time action for intuitive use.

The Samson Graphite 49 is bundled with Komplete Elements. This is basically a selection of 8 software tools which allows access to studio level sounds, in addition to tools and effects which you can utilize in production and sound design or even composition. If you are looking for a compact and customizable controller, the Samson Graphite 49 could be a great choice.


  • Impressive compact build
  • Wide compatibility allows this MIDI controller to work on a variety of devices
  • Great selection of programmable controls
  • Very easy to set up and use
  • Affordable


  • Drum pad sensitivity can be challenging for new users


View price on Amazon


Exterior design, compactness and portability

Both instruments boast a well executed exterior that remains dependable outside functional provisions. However, more users prefer the M-Audio 49 shell which hoses the rest of the controller in a more quality exterior case with the hardware inclusions and fixtures on the M-Audio Oxygen taking on a safer and more dependable format.

Another important element to this difference is their weights. The M-audio is a 6.4lbs instrument while the Samson Graphite is 2.6lbs well over that. The difference may be small but said nuances influence portability and general handling. Overall, both keyboard controllers come in reasonably built exteriors which many users appreciate.

Price and performance

Samson makes their Graphite 49 model quite affordable even with all the inclusions and capabilities on there. However, the M-Audio is slightly less costly and yet, still as functional. Likewise, many users site that using the Samson Graphite will take some getting used to considering some of the velocity sensitive keys are jumpy and unpredictable. This is quite different from the great reception the M-Audio Oxygen receives.

Final word

At a glance, both the keyboard controllers from M-Audio Oxygen collection and Samson’s Graphite collection may seem like the same controller. However, from what we have discussed in the comparative review above, these are evidently very differently equipped controllers. Both take a thorough approach in ensuring both the M-audio Oxygen 49 and Samson Graphite 49 are well equipped to match different music makers’ demands.

Peter Smith

Welcome to MusicGearAdvisor! 4 years ago I rediscovered my passion for making music and began building my own home studio. As I have gone through my journey I realized that I am just as passionate about the equipment as I am about the music. I started MusicGearAdvisor as a way for me to share my learnings with others so you can get started making music that you dream of.

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