A4 Tips & Tricks

Couldn’t find a thread on this, so thought I’d start one. The reason being a cool thing I just found out, a lot of you will probably already know.

  • If you hold down a note on the mini-keyboard on say track 1, keep holding the key, select track 2, hold a key on that, and then select track 3 etc, the notes from the previous tracks remain sustained as long as you keep holding the first note you triggered down, the second etc. Pretty cool if you want to create some intense sounding stuff.

Nothing amazing, but I found it really cool to jam around this way, so thought I’d share in case someone hadn’t tried it out.

Do you have any cool tricks up your sleeve? :slight_smile:


:+1: you can copy multiple trigs at once in grid mode
they don’t even need to be adjacent
copy ‘gaps’ are even preserved
the press order of your copy trigs is important
the first one pressed will determine the pattern at the paste trig (singular) location


Wish you had some other ‘global’ effects on your A4? LPF? HPF? Well you do!

Sacrifice one of the effects, I like to use Chorus for this as it’s the global I use least - for example:

send all your tracks to Chorus then configure chorus to ‘do nothing’ - min depth, speed, 0 feedback etc.

Next, configure Performance params so you can control the Chorus LP & HP for instant ‘DJ style’ master filters.

With judicious Performance set ups you can even keep the Chorus should you need it for certain tracks.

The above might be obvious but it’s the season of goodwill so I thought I’d share anyway :joy:


Not obvious to me. Cool tip. Better check it out as it’s a trip into digital. The chorus can also be tweaked to give nice comb filter timbres with short delays and high fbk !


Wow, that sounds like a cool trick! I’ll have to try that out. Thanks for sharing! :slight_smile:

Still not incredibly obvious, I can’t take a good chunk of the original out of the mix, so it’s creating gentle freq balance shifts over what seems like a narrow range top/bottom - not quite DJ style, maybe i’m missing something, tried with internal and external material!

I’m a new A4 owner, but I noticed 2 things not mentioned in the manual.

[li]Holding down the Parameter buttons (Osc 1 to LFO) will reveal the parameter value for all 10 encoders. Much easier and safer than pressing down on a encoder, hoping not to unintentionally nudge the value.[/li]
[li]Double-tapping the Stop button can be used to immediately cut off a sound being playing in realtime, not just to cut off a pattern in playback.[/li]


TIP 1: “Tonal feedback sound”

Had a lot of fun with setting osc1 to fbk and set am1 to on

Even with osc2 turned down you get a tonal feedback sound, the pitch is controlled by the osc2 pitch setting.

NB: you have to set osc 2 to pulse, or adjust pw of saw to hear this!!!

TIP2: ext input level to weak? use moderate amount of filt od to compensate. works to add a bit of compression to transients too!

  1. That feature ought to be covered in the release notes for OS upgrades, lots of upgraded features are only discussed there fwiw
  2. That’s a common way to implement the all-notes-off midi-standard command cc123 - so, it’s possibly not mentioned, but may well have been in an earlier product’s manual
    there are a few undocumented techniques which have popped up on here from time to time, it’s worth looking through the old threads ; )

great thread on 1 here :+1:

I’m compulsively meticulous. I’ll need to check out the entirety of the release notes now!

Hello Adam,
Thank you very much for your passion and time for this grat forum, elektron and especially the a4.
I also love your music, am a big fan of detroit techno, where the a4 can come near those hoodesque filter sounds and great elektro snares. I like my a4, what prevents me from more jamming and exploring is still one thing:
I have to reload the kit AND pattern (because of plocks) before switching
So the reload kit when… in the global is not so helpful.
Also , im afraid of destroying, loosing a kit and/or pattern by switching a wrong key or forgetting something.

I would really be very happy for an advice from a pro and enthusiast how you deal with that in studio and live.
That detail really blocks me from using a4 more and maybe buying rytm2.
Thanks a lot pdp

Could you please elaborate, in great detail, on why you have to do this?
I’m not understanding your meaning, or what you intend to accomplish that A4 is preventing you from accomplishing.

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Wow thanks for quick reply and sorry if it sounded complicated.
I just want to jam with a4, save a kit and pattern (there are the p locks saved) and from there play with sounds and p locks and save the new state.
I know i can or i should make a copy before jamming, but thats complicated, where is what.
I know there is a copy, reload paste, name thing possible, also very complicated.
But there is also the fear and experience of loosing stuff by accidently changing pattern.
And im MOSTLYcurious how you deal and organize with this. Also live, you play live with a copy of a project you can “destroy” or how are you organized? THANks for your love fore elektronauts, detroit and a4

Get quick and practice with your copy/paste commands.
If you’re jamming and elaborating on a concept with no p-locks and notes, paste a pattern and elaborate from there. Don’t ever make changes within a pattern that you wouldn’t want to save on top of. For that, paste a copy of that pattern and work from there.

Of course.
And my main composition project stays locked on the +Drive.

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thanks again for answer and commitment.
It is as it is.
The great sequencer is very inpiring to turn on often quickly the machine and morph something harcore to someting ambient.
That i dont have the possibility to say to the machine (digital mind) that it is the same after mangling without worrying, copying, naming, clearing after turning off lowers my wish to turn it on and to buy other elektrons. Thats just me(?)
Often instead i turn on your enthusiastic sound discussions here.
Note to myself: pen and paper, to finally write more poems or to somehow organize a4

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Hello again, sorry .
I hope im not too annoiing if I ask the other elektronauts once again how you approach the machine knowing that you have to reload the pattern ( because of p locks , trigs, …) every time you want to change pattern or turn off the A4. You have a strategy when and where you place a copy, how you deal with renaming.?

You have a lot of copies and copies of copies of kits when you play live and you have a strategy or system how they are organized?
Is something wrong with my brain?
Ok, yes…

I hope I made it clear im otherwise a big fan of elektron.
I like how i can mangle a bit and save or DONT save easily on a tanzbär, but would much prefer a more complex rytm2 or another a4(2) as great percussion mangling, ambient and cv synth
Thanks again to adam and the whole nauts for great forum.

There is a checkbox somewhere (Kit menu most likely) that enables to “reload on change”.
Look for these words in PDF manual. Might be what you’re after, if I understood correctly.

Now you can also use the “tabula rasa” project (look for these words on this site) : that project is an empty one in which every Pattern is linked to its own Kit.

About Tabula Rasa on the good old EU forum :

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thanks a lot for the effort and the link, will check out the tabula rasa thing.

But stil:

The reload thing refers to what i mean. (Global menu) Yes, it reloads only the kit but p locks are stored with the pattern.
And since the the sequencer is so great it invites to change trigs (stoted with pattern)

Im mostly surprised that this beaviour doesnt seem to bother or worry the experienced elektronauts.

And Im wondering why and how you approach the machine and what systematic you have to evolve one kit to another. “Save as” on computer, altough i almost dont have a computer.
And/or to change trigs and sound live

Adam wrote the best possible advice in short, to practice copy paste stuff.but it remains naming and organizing the copies of copies of kits.

Again, if there wouldnt be a great sequencer with p locks i wouldnt care.
Have a nice day

Sorry but I still can’t clearly comprehend what you are meaning no exactly.
Maybe you’re holding your hammer the wrong way :wink: