In my previous blog post about samplers and computers, I lamented the fact that Akai’s old Ak.Sys program would no longer run for me if I upgraded to Apple OS X 10.7 “Lion.” Well, that’s mostly true.
So since Ak.Sys is a PowerPC app and Lion finally does away with PowerPC support, there’s a problem for those of us who like to use old samplers, still. I liked being able to transfer samples to the S5000 over USB and also to adjust parameters on it from my computer.
This is going to be a short post, so here’s what you need to do if you want to continue using your S5000 over USB with modern computers. First, download the Ak.Sys packages for Windows from Akai. You’ll find them on their website. There are four: you need the latest version of Ak.Sys, the USB drivers for the S5000, S5000 support for Ak.Sys, and the S5000 “themes” for Ak.Sys.
Second, if you’re using Windows 7 64 bit, you’ll need to install “XP mode” which allows you to run a 32 bit environment as a virtual machine. If you’re using Windows 7 32 bit, then you don’t need to do that. If you’re using a Mac, like me, use a Virtual PC program like VirtualBox, Fusion, or Parallels to create a Windows virtual machine. Make sure you install a 32 bit version of Windows 7, not 64 bit.
Third, once you have your OS up and running install the Ak.Sys program. Then, unzip the S5000 USB drivers to a known place. Turn on the S5000 and connect it over USB to your computer. If you’re using a Mac, tell your virtual PC running Windows to connect to the S5000 over USB. Windows will then ask you for a path to the drivers. Find the S5000 drivers you just unzipped and point the installation process to them.
Now, install the S5000 themes for Ak.Sys on the Windows machine. Then, install the S5000 support files for Ak.Sys. After these steps, you should be able to run Ak.Sys from Windows and see the sampler.
At this point you can configure your computer however fits your workflow best. I like to map a drive from Windows to my samples folder on the Mac so I can find the files I want easily. I use VMWare Fusion, and that supports a Unity mode. That means I can treat Ak.Sys mostly like a regular Mac program so it’s not too far away from the good old days when it ran natively on Mac.Posted: April 13th, 2012 | Tags: ak.sys, akai, samplers | 3 Comments »