Akai XR20 Beat Production Station Drum Machine
Taking the best parts of Akai's wildly popular MPC line, and then pre-loading over 700 sound and integrated effects, the XR20 is one of the finest drum machines on the market. There are twelve pads that Akai calls "MPC-esque", and the backlit LCD screen is large and organized clearly and intuitively. Also, the pads themselves are backlit and follow the beat while the device is playing. In Pattern Play mode, different patterns can be triggered by a single pad strike, a very useful tool when performing live. Lastly, a drum roll/note repeat function is included, a feature desired but not available in some other items on this list. For sound, MPC-like workflow, portability, and overall value, the XR20 is the drum machine to have if you can afford the price tag.