Digitakt + Digitone + Octatrack MKII + Keystep Combination


#1

Hello Elektronauts!

I have recently purchased the Digitone and Digitakt and have been enjoying them immensely, but I have noticed that I am lacking the ability to play and mangle long samples, as well as resampling and filtering both machines without a laptop so I have my eyes on the Octatrack MKII. I have had the Octatrack MKI a couple of years ago and was pretty quick with it so I know what I’m getting into. Also, I am looking into the Arturia Keystep to unlock full possibilities of the Digitone (though only for studio/production sessions). However, there is an itch in the back of my head that comes from thinking about all the possible ways to set up MIDI and Audio routing between these devices, so I thought that there is no better place to ask about something like this but at the home of the Elektronauts!

AUDIO ROUTING:
My initial intention was to send the Digitone and Digitakt audio to the Octatrack and in addition to its main functions use it as the main mixer with resampling capabilities. However, while perfect for live performances the producer in me just dreads the idea of recording a complete track as a single stereo stem into Ableton. I do realise that once the Overbridge 2.0 becomes available I will be able to record Digitone and Digitakt via USB. And just to mention, my audio interface has four inputs.

After thinking about this I ran into a problem, what if I want to connect an external microphone, guitar or my friends OP-Z into the Octatrack? I’m out of tracks! So which do you think would be better for audio routing for live performance/jam session:

  • Digitakt into Digitone into Octatrack - which would leave two mono or one stereo input on the OT for additional gear, but would limit me to using same two FX tracks on both the Digitone and the Digitakt and prevent me to sample these machines separately.

OR

  • Digitakt and Digitone into Octatrack - which would let me have two FX tracks for each device, enable me to resample the machines separately and if I wanted to connect any additional gear I would do so into the Digitone.

One additional question regarding audio routing is:

Since Digitone and Digitakt are both quite punchy, will they become much flatter once routed into the Octatrack? Of course, maybe the flat sound of the Octatrack is a myth and I am merely overthinking this part!

MIDI ROUTING:
For live performance and production which machine would serve as the best master clock and program-changing device? I am considering the Digitakt since it holds BPM values per pattern and I could sync it to Ableton via USB. Would this MIDI chain be viable and effective?

Production:

  • Ableton USB into Digitakt, Digitakt MIDI OUT into Octatrack MIDI IN, Octatrack MIDI THRU into Digitone MIDI IN. Keystep into Digitone MIDI IN through a MIDI Splitter. Would I be able to change patterns on the Digitone via Digitakt AND play the Digitone with the Keystep if I connect the MIDI IN with a two-way splitter?

To clarify I am not interested in the sequencing capabilities of the Keystep I want it merely to add dynamics with functions like aftertouch, velocity sensitivity and the assignable mod wheel.

Live Performance:

  • Digitakt MIDI OUT into Octatrack MIDI IN, Octatrack MIDI THRU into Digitone MIDI IN.

The perfectionist in me would like to use the Octatrack as the main hub for audio as well as MIDI however, it being unable to save BPM with patterns and receive MIDI via USB is a dealbreaker. I am also not interested in the song mode. But if you have any viable argument why I should use the Octatrack as the main MIDI clock please share your thoughts!

Sorry for the long post and I really hope some of you will have the patience and wisdom to reply!
Thank you!


#2

I would add a mixer into the setup to get all the required audio routing flexibility (send/return/more audio channels and flexible routing).

I know you have mentioned you are not interested in the song mode, but the arranger would give you the missing BPM feature.


#3

I would go DT into DN. DN into Heat. Heat into OT. Use OT cue outs for fx.


#4

But this would make it impossible to send DT or DN through OT cue outs for external effects separately correct? They would be mixed into one stereo track? Or does Heat have 4 ins and 4 outs? I haven’t checked that machine out yet. What would you recommend for external effects? Wouldn’t it be quite disappointing that I would not be able to run the OT tracks trough Heat? How about sending DT and DN into Octatrack and then the main output to Heat and Cue outputs to external fx, that way I could send DT and DN to fx separately?


#5

Yes but you use OT to record. It can’t replace a decent mixer. So record DN or DT via the Heat and then send what you have recorded through your fx chain and record it again.