Best Groovebox: Syntakt vs Digitakt

i had the digitakt a couple years back and loved the form factor but hated the sterile digital sound.

fast forward to today and ive got all the saturation/compression gear i need

which box is better as an all-in-one performance groovebox?

i had the korg esx-1 and loved it, looking to upgrade

Hard to top samples when it comes to versatility.


I don’t regret my DT I sold to fund the Syntakt.
Sampler vs Digital + Analog synthesis + Analog fx bus.

So if you want a warmer sound, all in one, Syntakt. You already answered to your question imho.

FX track is not an Analog Heat, limited drive and no dry/wet mix possibility per track, it’s a switch.


i already solved the warmer sound with effect boxes - now its down to which box is a better groovebox

what is your standard for a ‘good’ groovebox?

Well the Syntakt can sound filthy and hit haaard!


This is an apples-to-oranges comparison. Do you prefer working with samples (including building oscillators from single-cycle waveforms) or digital and analog synthesis?


korg electric esx-1 : very immediate with full control over each sound and extremely playable in a live show


The answer is YES to getting all of them.


In terms of basic workflow they are almost identical. The sequencer works the same, the FX sends work the same and the “sound pool” works the same. It really just depends if you prefer to work with samples or with synthesis.

They are both really excellent machines but there are people here who swear by sampling and those (like me) that love sampling and samples but get frustrated by the (at least partly) inevitable process of sifting and sorting samples to use as raw material.

It’s really very difficult to say that either is objectively “better” than the other. I have a Syntakt and I really like it but I’m very tempted to get the other and use them as a pair, they would complement each other very well. There are things that either box does very well that the other will never do.

I would also add that both have excellent resale potential so you won’t lose a lot of money if you buy one and then change your mind. You’ll be in good company here if you buy stuff and then sell it again and move on!


Or, you know, cycle around to the same gear several times…


I own both, and one substantial difference if you use a MIDI keyboard with it in live performances: Syntakt has expressive parameters you can map to Mod Wheel, Aftertouch, Pitch Bend, and Velocity. You have to set them up for each sound but it sounds great and offers a kind of control over the sounds that isn’t there on the Digitakt.

Both are really deep instruments, though I’m personally happiest using Digitakt as a “brain” (and drums, sometimes bass) for one or more other synths, while Syntakt feels a little more “all-in-one.”


I wouldn’t ever say either Syntakt or Digitakt are better than the other. They complement each other so well, the only thing that would make one better than the other is if your workflow is more sample-based or more synth-based.

I honestly think the combination of a Digitakt and Syntakt is one of the best comprehensive foundations for a elektron-based setup. Because they are compact, have very similar workflows but also a very complementary feature set. The real dilemma is the existence of the Analog Rytm (which I also own and love). Rytm is almost like the hybrid of the other two and would cost you about the same as the other two combined.

The answer on which to buy is highly subjective. In my world, the Digitakt / Syntakt beats the Rytm, but only because I value the compactness, 2nd LFO’s, extra digital machines and more powerful MIDI capabilities.


Had the digitakt for 2 years, it was an absolute blast, but the sound became very bland to me. I sold it and got a Syntakt, I love the sound of it, but really p locking an entire loop on one track. I went through a time period of only owning a digitakt with nothing else, and was sampling from ableton. Now, I only own the Syntakt with no other gear, and it feels more like a complete groovebox than the Digitakt did. Absolutely jaded.


The question of which is better Syntakt or Digitakt is just kinda silly to me and is impossible to separate from personal preference.

The syntakt, you surely have an immediate connection to a variety of shallow synthesis. FM/analog synthesis/partial physical modeling. Your depth is limited, but you have immediate access to it. Also, hey, chords!

Digitakt you’re able to grab any sound, fairly immediately and do with it what you will.

As of right now, in the current OS, I’d recommend getting a DT and MC because a vast amount of the engines come from the MC.


I think it’s also important to note that most respondents have only a small amount of Syntakt experience. The Digitakt has been out longer, time enough for people to become jaded or tired of it. Factoring that into a comparison at this point is bound to be quite difficult.


I’ll get tired of the Syntakt sound in 2 years.


It’s a sampler.
It’s a mirror.
What you give it, it gives back to you.


If you have sound sources you are happy with now, the Digitakt is probably the better option (sampling).

If you don’t, the Syntakt is the better option (synthesis).

Sequencing is the same on both pretty much. Although overall the DT gives you more.



I think he means the sound profile of the digitakt, not the samples themselves.