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I know people consider rackmount samplers worthless but DAMN!!! Recorders, Players & Tape Machines
Old 7th September 2011
Lives for gear
I know people consider rackmount samplers worthless but DAMN!!!

I've been slowly putting together new a show using stuff like Ableton, monome apps, and live looping...but watching a really great MC/producer prematurely end his show (on the 2nd song) by his laptop falling off the stage (it came flying towards me) made me reconsider some things.

Honestly, it was a bit traumatizing, I felt bad for the guy and it started me thinking about incorporating some redundant hardware on stage. I didn't want to go the MPC route because I have enough pad controllers already and would be a waste of space and $$$. I started looking for a cheap sampler that I could just keep hooked up on the side in case my laptop goes under for some reason mid-show.

Within a week I found a guy selling a Emu Esi4000 on craigslist for 10 bucks. He said that he could trigger samples from the front panel but not from midi, so he was just giving it away instead putting in the trash. I figured for 10 bucks I could at mess around with it or use it for parts.

Once we met up he showed me some other stuff that he was gonna get rid of. One of which was an Akai Z4 in a nice single-rack road case that he said was having some strange memory problems. The Z4/Z8 were the last generation of hardware samplers that Akai put out...basically the sampling section of the MPC4000. He only asked 25 bucks for the Akai. The road case alone was worth that. I gave him an even $40 for both samplers since even if I could fix one of them it was a steal.

After getting them home, sure enough...both of them worked fine. Apparently he tried to max out the memory on the Akai and one of the RAM sticks was bad. Pulled it more memory errors. The Emu was just set to the wrong midi channel.

I had already jumped ship to software samplers when the Z4 came out, so I didn't realize how great the integration is: USB drag and drop, editing right on the computer through ak.sys, etc. He even installed a 160gb HD (that autoloads on boot), but no effects card though...I guess you can't win them all. The Emu on the other hand has built-in effects and he also gave me a CD-Rom drive for it.

Man...I knew that a lot of people consider hardware samplers (except MPCs) pretty worthless nowadays...but DAMN!!!
Old 7th September 2011
Gear Addict

That is a wicked deal! What a come up. How are you finding the sound of them? I owned an MPC 4000 once. It was pretty clean and punchy sounding.
Old 7th September 2011
Lives for gear

Great deal. Shopping for used hardware today is more like rioting because ppl are just giving things away that once cost thousands for next to nothing.
Old 7th September 2011
Lives for gear

Not worthless to me, the Akai rack samplers are awesome!
Old 7th September 2011
Lives for gear
Realziment's Avatar

I always wanted one of those z4 or z8 when i was a kid starting out, but damn they cost serious money back then! What a sweet deal! good luck with it!
Old 7th September 2011
Lives for gear
Reggmail's Avatar

I feel you on that, although I have two PC's Laptop & Desktop with lots of VST's.
It's nothing like the feel of outboard analog gear.

I recently sold a $2400 ALESIS HD 24 for less than $900 on Ebay, you never get what used gear is really worth in this economy these day's.
I love my ROLAND VP 9000 sampler with it's veriphrase Technology, paid close to $2000 for it, you could probably find it for $500 on Ebay.
Right now, it's not worth parting with, I will use it until it - or me dies.....Lol.

I will agree, I think that most of us has became very relied on Digital VST's on computers, now the old analog machines is finding a new appreciation.
Peace & blessings.
Old 8th September 2011
Lives for gear

damn, you hit a lick , OP

thems crackhead prices
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