Am I the only one? [Machinedrum love]


haven’t tried that in years, and yes it’s a very liberating approach.
inspired by your cool suggestion, made a super funky hihat pattern played on MD through tube preamp to match a tight chill groove on the OT. perfection. took some massaging but eventually after nudge here and removal of a couple of notes there, everything was sounding fab.

captured to the OT and saved as a drumline’s hihat part.
it will sound amazing for live performance during earlier time slots of an evening.


Yes, it’s a great machine, but I sold mine just recently alongside my ARmk1, as personally found the MD menus a bit slow and limited (i know limited can mean creative) to use compared to the newer Elektron machines - I don’t miss it that much as bought the ARmk2 and DT, also bought the Driven Machine Drums sample pack, which captures the best of the MD and more, IMO.


I use the same approach all the time when recording with ableton. I set the same BPM, metronome on, and tempo nudge the live clock until it sounds synced, then just trigger clip recording at will. I find it often much easier thatn futzing around trying to come up with autosync while messing about and patching stuff in and out for recording on the fly.


I’ve tried and loved pretty much every Elektron box out there, but the Machinedrum … I just didn’t get it. Every sound sounded so tinny tinpot metal clank to me. Cool for some sounds, of course, but … could never get any sort of oomph or depth in the sound. Probably user error though! :slight_smile:


Thought something similar at the beginning (couple of months ago).
Having fun with CTR AL machine modulated with lfos, some things totally unexpected came out. That’s the thing for me. Surprises.

For minimal powerfull funny tek, it’s very quick, and so efficient !


i use the Machinedrum for the Userwave sample section… not all samples take to the 12 bit environment, but the ones that do really sound amazing.

for the internal synthesis machines, the hihats have amazing potential, the bass drums are great for layering with a sample… similarly so for the snare drums. the tom drums are pretty way-cool in their own right i would say.

putting the internal synthesis bass drums through a Universal Audio Solo 610 tube preamp on the line level input is next-level warm rich soundmaking activity.

but yeah i love the MD mainly for playing samples and the natural swing to the master tempo rhythm feel, almost as though it adds infinitesimal danceable swing to a 4/4 techno beat. borrowing just a bit from the beat ahead and giving it back a couple of beats later. on a very subtle level.

also the percussion machines and LFO’s are great for rainforest techno funk.

individual volume levels need to be attenuated for each sound or synth loads at vol 127, when midday is actually the volume neutral setting where no digital gain is being applied to the Vol. makes a difference to move this setting to midday for sure, helps with sound design and achieving warmer sounds.

i’m starting to use a tube-preamp “amplifier in a guitar pedal” kind of thing with the Machinedrum and it’s great, changing the tube/eq bias is fun, and the audio is very usable especially if the initial gain/drive stage is kept to a sensible/moderate level.


IMO, proper gain staging is very important on the MD. As already pointed out by @previewlounge, one thing to check is the level of the machines since the initial volume is set too high. Another level to check is the gain of the global EQ Effect, which is initially also set to full boost! I was totally amazed, how much of an impact setting the EQ gain to 0 had on the overall sound: It definitely became warmer, wider, more dynamic and less harsh/agressive/in your face.


What is this BPM nudge you speak of?

I’ve only synced manually via the good ol’ push play on both devices at the exact same time method


left / right arrows


thats the fun, and annoyance of the MD. Tin can, and all. Its more over use than anything else, not really user error. Too many tracks, too much overcrowding with metal sounds. The knife were masters just using the sp1 non uw and keeping it very simplistic and making sure the levels were right. Thumps with a few tracks,…that way.


I still love the md swing. You describe the swing perfectly :slight_smile.

I’m sure you have tired sequencing the md with the OT, and the Ot with the MD and spitting out weird stuff. Thats good fun.


actually thinking about sequencing the MD with the OT yes.
although have not done so as of yet.

would sequence the MD with the OT not so much for trippy effect;
but rather merely to ensure the tightest groove possible - to then loosen it up with some Swing.

i remember reading that someone didn’t like the Octatrack’s Swing feel. At the time i had not tried it but in fact now that i have (with the se02 for basslines) i must say it is just fine; i like it a lot! Cool Swing.


I think the 16 tracks is great for adding MIDI sequencing and resampling tricks into the mix though. Using 16 tracks worth of drums might be pushing it indeed.


My MD has been my only drum machine for about ten years. Loving it all the time but thought I’d expand the sonic possibilities a bit. So I just bought a Rytm and realised how spoiled I’ve been having a HP/LP filter with a one band EQ for every track. :grimacing:


For those interested in the 432hz tuning, the requrement for using concert-pitch samples (if any) in a 432hz piece, is they be reduced by a percentage of cents, rather than just reducing 8 steps on the Pitch rotary to represent 8 hertz less than 440hz current tuning.

31.79 cents, to be precise to the articulation of two decimal places. So it’s about 32 Cents equating to an 8 hertz adjustment up or down.

just re-reading the Machinedrum manual about Rom machine playback and Pitch…

Pitch “Adjusts the pitch two octaves up or down. For the first octave up or down, every third parameter step adjusts the pitch one semi-note.”

So that means an automatic reduction of 33.3 percent each Pitch rotary value on the Machinedrum’s rom machines - approximately 8 hertz. so the Maachinedrum’sample playbbaack is ‘ready-made’ for converting a “concert pitch” sample to a “A=432hz” master tuning sample by reducing Pitch parameter by one simple increment.

I’m not exploring 432hz master tuning for ‘spiritual’ reasons … it’s just that an article on the topic showed the same loop at different master tunings, the 432hz version was slightly more mellow in tone. Sure, it’s possible to make anything sound better or worse, especially via building reader-expectation… Anyway thought i would mention this.


Interesting. Maybe a tip and tricks things, not a love story. :wink:
For reducing pitch by 1 increment I found 431,609 hz from calculation with that formula : F=440/(2^(1/36)), based on 1 octave divided by 36 increments.
Close enough to 432 Hz ?
I’ll keep on using 440 hz anyway ! :slight_smile:

440 hz BBC history

The B.B.C. tuning-note is derived from an oscillator controlled by a piezo-electric crystal that vibrates with a frequency of one million Hz. This is reduced to a frequency of 1,000 Hz by electronic dividers; it is then multiplied eleven times and divided by twenty-five, so producing the required frequency of 440 Hz. As 439 Hz is a prime number a frequency of 439 Hz could not be broadcast by such means as this.6


An interesting read, thx for sharing!


Wait… what???

I’ve owned 3 (and foolishly sold 2) MDs since like 2001, and I literally never knew this. HOW DID I NOT KNOW THIS??? Now I’m wondering what else I don’t know.

God, I can’t wait to get all my crap through customs on Friday… TV… couch… baby stuff… whatever. I want my gear.


Workflow: Machinedrum UW with Cenk-


Holy crap, the voice sound saying “three two, two two three” is cheesy AF! lol embarrassing.