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Does the Octatrack really sound so flat?
Old 14th January 2018
  #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A.I. Batule Chee View Post
Well this girl makes it sound very good! You may not like her music but it doesn't sound bad at all. Plus it's really ballsy to make a performance with just an OT!

I'm not 100pc, but looks like she was using only 2 outputs. I don't usually use the Octatrack for kicks, snares etc, but sometimes when I do, I use all four outs, one reserved for kicks, low toms etc, and a dedicated HW compressor, mixer's eq and preamps. Always 24 bit! I don't record straight into the unit (I have the MK 1). From demos, I agree that the DT sounds punchier for drums, but mono tracks only and only global send fx IMO makes it useless for pads, and well, any stereo sounds.
Old 14th January 2018
  #32
mp3
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The Toraiz is modern sounding but the filter can help with that. Each track is monophonic so no polyphonic playing from a keyboard. Doesn’t handle single cycle waves very well. Each track can handle a sample or loop up to 64 seconds long but bear in mind that the sequencer is only 4 bars max. It’s supposed to be getting live looping at some point (which their other sampler, the DJS, has now) but that’s pie in the sky right now so take with a grain of salt. Following your posts over the last 9-10 months steely, I don’t get the sense that the Toraiz is your box either unfortunately.

Honestly, I think you might want to also look into last gen boxes like the MV-8000/8800, MPC4000, or maybe even the ASR-X etc.
Old 14th January 2018
  #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A.I. Batule Chee View Post
Well this girl makes it sound very good! You may not like her music but it doesn't sound bad at all. Plus it's really ballsy to make a performance with just an OT!

XOSAR!
Old 14th January 2018
  #34
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Longtime OT fan here. I agree that it doesn't sound as defined and punchy as I'd like if you use it to play back one-shots and loops. If that's your workflow, the OT is overkill for you. But it can do what you want with careful gain staging, per track EQ and outboard compression.

For most people, the extra effort isn't worth it. You're better off with a Digitakt or Toraiz or MPC or Electribe or SP404 or just about any other sampler.

The OT, in my mind, is about performance. That means much more than twisting the cutoff knob and muting tracks and changing patterns to bring in the drop. If that's your workflow, the OT is overkill for you. 99.99% of people will use only 0.01% of the OT's capabilities.

Yes, the OT mkI sounds suboptimal if you don't listen carefully and if you don't put in the work. But the good news is most people don't need an OT in the first place. For 99.9% of people it's overkill and it sounds bland. Avoid at all costs.
Old 16th January 2018
  #35
I have a Toraiz and had an MPC Live. the MPC to me, sounded flat and lifeless. The Digitakt seemed to have a different presence to it than the OT, but I wouldn't say it sounds better. But I tossed the DT due to constant crashes, so it's been a while.

But I don't see how a youtube video of any sort is going to cut it as compared to hearing the thing in person. I think the OT sounds fine and think you guys are just too picky. But that's just me. I have a STRONG C# going 24/7 (Tinnitus) so WTF do I know? I'm happy with my MKII stuff.

Elektron = pure win in the effects section, followed by the Toraiz (even though the reverb sucks) and finally the MPC (effects are terrible).
Old 16th January 2018
  #36
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OT doesn't sound flat

old wives tale

Comparing what tracks you hear on YT is silly, you have no idea what chain or source people used for their files or how they managed any EQ, comp, verb, gain staging etc before, inside or after the OT, it is mental to draw a conclusion on such data.

OP, just try one, load some files in via USB (transparent) and if you need to know about the inputs simply drive them a bit past the orange and use 24 bit, you'll not complain.
Old 16th January 2018
  #37
Gear Head
 

This OT vs DT argument is moot.

There are countless videos on youtube showing them side by side and the difference is negligible. The only thing I picked up is some of the envelopes on the Digitakt sounded clicky or "brighter", and that could be down to the 0 crossing on the sample and the user (which IMO is most likely).

The gain staging argument is interesting as I haven't encountered that yet, I will do some experimenting when I get home. I've never had a problem with bad summing or poor sound coming from my OT.
Old 16th January 2018
  #38
Gear Nut
 

It's not the sound of the sampled audio that is bad, it's the pitching and timestretching. So yeah, if you never intend to use any of that, then it's old wives tales..
Old 16th January 2018
  #39
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I no longer have one, but I’d say the OT sounds pretty neutral. It’s no going to spice up your sounds but it doesn’t detract from them. What you put in is pretty much what you get out, tho gain staging is really important for getting the most out of it and can take some time to really understand.

The reason to buy an Octatrack is because of the playability it offers as an instrument. If you want a gritty, punchy sampler then just shut up and buy an Akai S-900 or something, but if you want a performance sampler, the OT is hard to beat. There are reasons I no longer have one, but I mostly loved it and wish I still had one just because of how fun it was to use for real-time performance options. If the MKII had Overbridge I’d already have one since ultimately my biggest issue in the end came to tracking it and wishing I could better mix individual tracks in my DAW (see also what I said earlier about gain staging).
Old 16th January 2018
  #40
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Synth Buddha's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by A.I. Batule Chee View Post
Well this girl makes it sound very good! You may not like her music but it doesn't sound bad at all. Plus it's really ballsy to make a performance with just an OT!

Um....


And yeah, OP, I sold mine for that reason (mainly). It did not sound very good to my ears.
Old 16th January 2018
  #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bob_rock View Post
I have a Toraiz and had an MPC Live. the MPC to me, sounded flat and lifeless. The Digitakt seemed to have a different presence to it than the OT, but I wouldn't say it sounds better. But I tossed the DT due to constant crashes, so it's been a while.

But I don't see how a youtube video of any sort is going to cut it as compared to hearing the thing in person. I think the OT sounds fine and think you guys are just too picky. But that's just me. I have a STRONG C# going 24/7 (Tinnitus) so WTF do I know? I'm happy with my MKII stuff.

Elektron = pure win in the effects section, followed by the Toraiz (even though the reverb sucks) and finally the MPC (effects are terrible).
MPC Live effects are terrible??? Wtf!?!
Old 16th January 2018
  #42
I think so. I'm speaking mostly about the reverb. Side by side the Elektron reverb and the MPC reverb and I think most would agree.
Old 16th January 2018
  #43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamie munro View Post
OT doesn't sound flat

old wives tale

Comparing what tracks you hear on YT is silly, you have no idea what chain or source people used for their files or how they managed any EQ, comp, verb, gain staging etc before, inside or after the OT, it is mental to draw a conclusion on such data.

OP, just try one, load some files in via USB (transparent) and if you need to know about the inputs simply drive them a bit past the orange and use 24 bit, you'll not complain.
I'm in this camp- Octatrack sounds fine. I've had mine so long I can't really remember when I bought it, and you get out what you put in every time. Proper gain staging and monitoring make a world of difference with the OT. The lights are a guide, you have to use your ears for the finer points. I wouldn't say anyone thinking they don't like the sound for whatever reason is imagining things though, it takes a lot of experience inside that particular environment to find the sweet spot, which is admittedly small.

I don't even think it's user error. I think Elektron made the Octatrack a little too hard to use really. I think this contributes to the idea that the Digitakt somehow sound better (comparisons reveal little difference imo) simply because the workflow is less convoluted, which results in a more "positive" experience. YMMV of course.

Grain of salt-My Octatrack is on Reverb now, modular won.
Old 16th January 2018
  #44
This may not be the best example, but if you can have the patience to get all the way through the video, I tried to show a variety of sounds/its sonic capabilities, and how I use it in a live performance. This video was made only a couple of weeks after I got the Octatrack...



Admittedly, like @ slaughtrhaus I too sold the Octatrack because, Modular. But I actually regret it (selling the Octatrack, not regretting the Modular.)
Old 16th January 2018
  #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joebas View Post
It's not the sound of the sampled audio that is bad, it's the pitching and timestretching. So yeah, if you never intend to use any of that, then it's old wives tales..
because TS sounds amazing on anything

agreed the TS alters the sound as it does with any algo - thing is though that if you're not using it you turn it off and there is no impact

edit: the OT has some lines that it draws that even a lover can say should have been better but for the money those lines can be ignored and treated as it's character, it's is not a super HI FI machine but it is a monster waiting to make you smile, it is not perfect by any stretch but it beats the ass off anything else that is trying to be remotely similar for pure creative energy.

Most people and i assume the OP is in this camp think of the oputputs and inpouts as the thing that creates a certain OT sound/flavour - it isn't, it is the way people manage their audio tracks inside it and TS/pitch being among the culprits if used badly. This thing processes a lot of info at a fast rate with zero hiccups - i can forgive a couple of lesser quality algo's for what it gives me
Old 16th January 2018
  #46
Quote:
Originally Posted by genshi View Post
...not regretting the Modular.)
Damn right. Not even close to regretting my choice to go modular. The same way the Octatrack blew the doors off my music making perspectives years ago when I got it, the same thing is happening now with the modular. That being said you can buy mine if you miss the Octatrack so much...

And I am funding the purchase of a Morphagene with the sale of the OT, so I'll still be sampling and mangling, just in the case how I like things to be now.
Old 16th January 2018
  #47
Quote:
Originally Posted by slaughtrhaus View Post
Damn right. Not even close to regretting my choice to go modular. The same way the Octatrack blew the doors off my music making perspectives years ago when I got it, the same thing is happening now with the modular. That being said you can buy mine if you miss the Octatrack so much...

And I am funding the purchase of a Morphagene with the sale of the OT, so I'll still be sampling and mangling, just in the case how I like things to be now.
haha, I would except, I just spent the very last of my money on a new Buchla Music Easel. Should be arriving end of this week, finally!
Old 16th January 2018
  #48
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamie munro View Post
because TS sounds amazing on anything

agreed the TS alters the sound as it does with any algo - thing is though that if you're not using it you turn it off and there is no impact

edit: the OT has some lines that it draws that even a lover can say should have been better but for the money those lines can be ignored and treated as it's character, it's is not a super HI FI machine but it is a monster waiting to make you smile, it is not perfect by any stretch but it beats the ass off anything else that is trying to be remotely similar for pure creative energy.

Most people and i assume the OP is in this camp think of the oputputs and inpouts as the thing that creates a certain OT sound/flavour - it isn't, it is the way people manage their audio tracks inside it and TS/pitch being among the culprits if used badly. This thing processes a lot of info at a fast rate with zero hiccups - i can forgive a couple of lesser quality algo's for what it gives me
The Octatrack is probably one of the most inventive things happening since the birth of sampling, and I have great respect for Elektron, as a whole(I have the Monomachine/A4/Machinedrum). I might have come off as a hater of the machine, which I am not. I'll just wait and get onboard, when the algos get a little stronger. Every time I pitch something in my Akai S3200, it makes me smile. I want the same thing from the OT
Old 16th January 2018
  #49
Ksp
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high spec on the technicality front and incredible but i think voiced more for 'that ' modern midrange sound and clarity than a big fat warm old tone that occupies all the spectrum .
Old 16th January 2018
  #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by genshi View Post
This may not be the best example, but if you can have the patience to get all the way through the video, I tried to show a variety of sounds/its sonic capabilities, and how I use it in a live performance. This video was made only a couple of weeks after I got the Octatrack...



Admittedly, like @ slaughtrhaus I too sold the Octatrack because, Modular. But I actually regret it (selling the Octatrack, not regretting the Modular.)
Hey hey! Nice work brother Genshi, I hear nothing wrong with that audio at all, some pretty ambitious music as well. Was diggin that, some of the more interesting music I've heard come from this machine (or artist rather) you've given me hope.

Lots of real talk in this thread, a lot to go on. Thank you fellow sluts! So right, I'm looking for a new creative machine and the OTMK2 looks like the ticket. I think with outboard and having a vibey mixer and external effects, I can make this box work.

One thing too, I've never intended to try and get my entire mix in this box, I see sending audio out to my mixer and multi tracking. As long as the "go" button "goes" I had in mind multi tracking different ideas, and using the OT to help me along, not really be a one stop solution. I feel that might help getting my mix correct (and more flexible). The OT would perform a type of glitch/modular sound for my setup, I'm just not ready to get fully into that modular aspect quite yet (not my main interest).

@ mp3 , yea man 9-10 months... I'm STILL looking for my new machine. Money is ready. I think I'll give this OTMK2 a shot. It does check a lot of musical and creative boxes.
Old 16th January 2018
  #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slaughtrhaus View Post
Damn right. Not even close to regretting my choice to go modular. The same way the Octatrack blew the doors off my music making perspectives years ago when I got it, the same thing is happening now with the modular. That being said you can buy mine if you miss the Octatrack so much...

And I am funding the purchase of a Morphagene with the sale of the OT, so I'll still be sampling and mangling, just in the case how I like things to be now.

Its sounds like you ditched sampling for modular. Which would be crazy. I assume you have some form of sampling already?
Old 16th January 2018
  #52
Quote:
Originally Posted by HaveItAll View Post
Its sounds like you ditched sampling for modular. Which would be crazy. I assume you have some form of sampling already?
No I have nothing to sample anything with right now, since the OT is boxed up and waiting to ship to some lucky soul. The truth is, sampling is not a huge part of my workflow compared to what it used to be when I was using the Octatrack as the hub of my setup. Even then I used the OT primarily as a sequencer/effects processor and sample player/mangler more than a proper sampler. I have gotten away from it altogether since going modular but will be sampling again soon enough...

The Morphagene will allow me to do the things I need from a sampler, and combined with Circadian Rhythms (came in mail today) I will be doing it in style, trust me.
Old 16th January 2018
  #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steelyfan View Post
Lol. The MK2 came out a few months back. New machine ( or is it?).

Right, so I saw the video ol boy with the beard did and he shows the gain staging steps. I can see how one could get a bit confused. Being that though, I agree that a $1,400 machine should be effortless to sound great. Thing is, with all the examples of what people go for as an over sound vibe.. "clean/crisp" , "full and punchy" etc, I'd say mine is ""warm and smooth" , but not flat and mushy.

Kinda a bummer, I was looking forward to getting this Pandora's box and taking a vowl of dedication to really learn its language, but I can't be fighting against that sound AND trying to learn the machine at the same time.

I was looking at the MPCX, 8 outputs with nice sampling options and a wicked controller with pads, but man I've just heard too many stories of build quality and a cumbersome operating system. I guess my machine hasn't been created yet. Dammit...
Look to the future and wasted time you’ll find.
Look behind you and the answer is waiting.

That Yoda style answer was funny in my head lol
Anyway, I think you need an MPC60
Old 16th January 2018
  #54
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I want to like it, as there doesn't seem to be many sample manglers. It's unique. People with talent rock pretty well with the OT, I'd probably need a year to learn how to turn it on.

Fvck it, just going to buy a MK2. Their stuff holds value so I should be fine if it doesn't work out.
Old 16th January 2018
  #55
Quote:
Originally Posted by steelyfan View Post
Hey hey! Nice work brother Genshi, I hear nothing wrong with that audio at all, some pretty ambitious music as well. Was diggin that, some of the more interesting music I've heard come from this machine (or artist rather) you've given me hope.
Thank you so much for the kind words, I truly appreciate it!
Old 16th January 2018
  #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slaughtrhaus View Post
No I have nothing to sample anything with right now, since the OT is boxed up and waiting to ship to some lucky soul. The truth is, sampling is not a huge part of my workflow compared to what it used to be when I was using the Octatrack as the hub of my setup. Even then I used the OT primarily as a sequencer/effects processor and sample player/mangler more than a proper sampler. I have gotten away from it altogether since going modular but will be sampling again soon enough...

The Morphagene will allow me to do the things I need from a sampler, and combined with Circadian Rhythms (came in mail today) I will be doing it in style, trust me.
IMO The more you create with temporary wires and ever changing modules, the more you need to 'print' those sounds to a sampler. Unless seat of your pants performing is your thing.
Old 16th January 2018
  #57
Quote:
Originally Posted by HaveItAll View Post
Unless seat of your pants performing is your thing.
Actually it is! My entire modular rig is geared towards live improvisation and playing with other musicians. I play in a band with a bass player and a drummer, and we don't have "songs". I just bang out a new patch (sometimes that morning) and bring it to practice and we jam that. In a couple hours it goes through several permutations, resulting in what could be edited into songs eventually. Every time we get together (normally weekly) we set up the gear and multitrack record every session, so if something sounds good, we got it. But we never repeat anything, we're a dubtronica jam band.
Old 16th January 2018
  #58
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@ slaughtrhaus that sounds fun man
Old 17th January 2018
  #59
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badmark's Avatar
I was using an OT mk1 as a mixer for some synths. Swapped it out for an old Mackie 1202 mixer. The easier 'workflow' I don't hold against the OT, but the synths simply sounded better through the Mackie. The mk2 probably is improved technically, not planning on getting one to find out though.
Old 17th January 2018
  #60
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After such complaints elektrons made Analog Heat.

Last edited by vromber; 17th January 2018 at 02:51 PM..
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