Analog 4 as 'brain' for beginner(ish)


#1

Im new to analogue HW but have a long musical background and recently picked up the BS2. Thinking it would be best to learn with mono

But now, i am quickly wanting to sequence and make some non traditional beats, with stutters, tripplets, etc. After reviewing a ton of groove boxes, I am hooked on the Analog 4 MK1; sound design looks epic. But its only a 4 voice, and is probably best for bass/leads and then drums. I might have not thought that totally through, because the A4 can probably do most of what the BS2 can. Please help put my mind on ease that I didnt waste money on the BS2 if I go and get a A4 tomorrow ahah.

Am I not thinking right the A4 as my ‘brain’/main box would be freaking awesome? The workflow looks amazing and the sequencer seems to be advanced enough for my liking, unlike the Circuit for example (no screen, very few buttons, requires PC to edit sounds). Should I consider the electribe 2 perhaps?

I appreciate any advice/help. Either way, the used market is great for synths so I can sell the BS2…


#2

Only thing to be aware with a4…It can send clock but not midi notes to midi out…Forget it to sequence other synth except for for one cv compatible one ( It can send 4 different cv out with splitters)…Not that great for a “Brain” !


#3

I have a BS2 and love it especially since the OS upgrade. Personally I would look elsewhere for a sequencer/synth partner. Perhaps a digitone? Monomachine? Or even octatrack? To my ears the A4 occupies very similar sonic territory as the BS2.
Electribes (EMX1 was a personal favourite) are absolutley amazing if you put the time in and get on with the workflow.


#4

True. But it appears unmatched in the sequencing space, all of the custom effects and PLocks and so on. Its difficult to look else ware.


#5

Could the octatrack sequence just as good as the A4 (OT is a sampler first, i understand)? And it can control via Midi correct?


#6

Octatrack definitely can do everything that A4 can do external sequencing-wise (unless you want CV/gate sequencing). It also has FX and can definitely act as a brain for your setup. It takes a bit of learning though.


#7

Thanks. I want to get the best sequencer for my dollar, within reason of course. People rave about the circuit and sometimes the electribe, but they both seem very generic and the sounds the same it seems. Where Elektron products have so much depth its hard to look away.

I am not scared by steep learning curves…


#8

Best sequencer for your dollar is the Squarp Pyramid. Thats what it does. Its primary function.
https://www.squarp.net


#9

Yeah the a4 isn’t going to give you want you want in terms of sequencing other gear, unless it can be controlled via cv.

If you want stutters and triplets you’re looking at the OT or the digitakt (possibly md but as I don’t own one, I couldn’t say).

The a4 is four mono synths in one box, that can be used to do some poly stuff at the expense of a voice(s).

Circuit and Electribe are OK, but not analog and as you’ve stated you’re using anlog hw these are probably not for you.

The analog 4 is a fantastic drum machine. I was using it as my only drum machine for sometime. It also does fm.

The digitakt would probably be your best bet here as its got a very straightforward workflow, has the sequencer you want, does the things you want, can sample, control other gear, and with single cycles you can use it as a synth.


#10

Excellent response thanks. I agree about the digitakt. Could I achieve the same drum sounds, like applying filters and FXs as A4, it appears yes? Also I could get some pretty unique pad sounds too? And control gear. Sounds like a winner


#11

yes, basically use the bs2 as a sound source for sampling into digitakt and sequence the bs2 via the dt… should let you make „complete“ songs… :+1:t2:


#12

I call my a4 mothership. :stuck_out_tongue: eventhou not so handy for controlling other gear. I only use the songmode to control digitakt pattern change. In A4 track 1 is for bass and tracks 2-4 are for drums, digitakt also is for drumsamples. I love this setup.


#13

Well as its a sampler, it all depends on what you feed it, however there’s a lot of shaping capabilities with the DT. The brr and filter are really useful tools.

You could synthesize drums on your bs, sample them into the DT and further shape with the onboard tools. That would be pretty cool.

Th DT has tons of factory content as well. Lots to play with to use as starting points.

I think you’ll get a lot of joy from the DT. And that’s half the battle won right there :wink:


#14

I use the A4 to lead the digitakt as well, works really well. I sample drums synth sounds from A4 into digitakt which is great up to free voices.

My set up is quite simple : A4 to digitakt (song mode) and digitakt Controlling Microgranny which goes back into A4 for Filter/effects… I like the circle…


#15

If you feed it with samples that were recorded from the A4, yes :slight_smile:

There are workarounds, but if unique pads are your goal, I wouldn’t go for a monophonic sampler


#16

Sounds like a sick setup would be digitakt and A4.


#17

Thanks for the responses. So yes for the drums? I could sample in drum kits from online and tweak like crazy? But pads are probably not great on DT it appears.

I can’t help but think the best setup would be DT and a4


#18

yes you can do that with the Digitakt


#19

I would advise to get the DT first for learning the elektron-way. Two elektron boxes are overkill for most people at the beginning, IMHO. You can easily add another device later… with resampling and some creativity one can squeeze pads out of the digitakt for sure


#20

Thanks so much. I appreciate it. So it looks like I’ll settle on the DT. Which could be my brain, seq, and pads, and use my BS for bass and more leads.