Elektron AND MPC

At the risk of redundancy and the perception of stupidity, I have started a thread that is intended as a place for discussing how to use both Elektron Gear and the MPC.

There are a few threads that have existed for some time discussing which workflow or machine is better for various uses and personalities (e.g. “Octatrack v. MPC”). They have been and continue to be helpful for those of us trying to decide which direction to take. I bought the MPC One, learned it a bit, didn’t love it, so then bought the OT and have been using it for the past two months (and completely ignoring the MPC). With the advent of MPC 2.10 (just came out this week), which adds a lot of new features (MPC says it’s their biggest update ever), I am taking a second look at the MPC One and am glad I didn’t sell it. I am now wondering how I might want to use them both together, along with my A4 and M:S and other stuff. For those that have Elektron gear but not an MPC, now might be a time to consider adding the MPC to your workflow, if that makes sense.

If this topic seems better placed elsewhere, then thank you for reading and this thread can just fade… away…


You have at least four sequencers in your setup. You should consider whether you want to run the sequencers in sync, playing their own sounds, or with one device sequencing some or all of the others.

If you don’t know what to do, you should start with one device (presumably the OT) and then consider why you might want to use any of the others to improve your music.


Thank you. I had the same thought in my purchase decisions. I bought the M:S just for fun and messing around, thinking I’d use it in my DAW (Logic), then I bought the MPC and was running the M:S into the MPC, then I bought the A4, thinking I’d use it along with some of my other synths in Logic, then bought the OT as a replacement for the MPC when I didn’t want to use Logic (TBH, I haven’t used Logic for months at this point). So, yes, now I am wondering (and am a bit confused) about whether the MPC or the OT should be the center of my DAWless workflow, or whether I can somehow use both at the same time for creating music.

If you have no preferences or insight as to their suitability for your music, just try one and see what happens.

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I already wrote about what seems to be the best couple for me: MPC One (or Live II or Force) + Model:Cycles.
Maybe plus an Analog box (Mopho, Evolver, Typhon).

But for sure, with this 2.10 and its synths no need to have an other VA and no need to add a sampler of course.

What sort of music do you make and how does your process usually look like? And is there anything you notice missing (functionality etc) when using the OT? What were the reasons you didn’t like the MPC One at first? And how much do you make use of the M:S, A4 and your other synths?

All great questions. Over the years, I have made more atmospheric ambient stuff, with some melodies, but very little rhythm and no drums. I’m hoping that, if I ever land on a dedicated sequencer/groovebox, I will find it easier to better “quantize” my music, give it more of a structure, with drum lines, bass lines, and then within that insert some melodies, or do it at the same time. Quite often, I create melodies and various sweep sounds, and then get stuck, lost, or uninterested. It feels disparate (but not desperate) if that makes sense. Also, I finally tied my various synths together in a singular audio (new mixer) and midi (new very capable midi thru/merger, which I can easily switch from computer, to MPC, to OT, to whatever I want, so I am far less dependent on Logic, which gives me a lot of freedom. I still plan to eventually create whole songs in Logic, but am thinking about various starting points (e.g. OT, MPC). I do not play live and have no interest in live playing.

I’d say the main thing missing in the OT is longer patterns (I haven’t gotten into arrangements yet on the OT). This is very easy (too easy?) in Logic, but also easy on the MPC. Like many others have said, the limits of the OT are a mixed blessing. If thinking about song composition with a sampler on a spectrum, I’d say OT is on the more limited side, but with really cool functionality missing from others, MPC is in the middle (as an all-in-one box) and a DAW is the most limitless, if you are good with figuring out how to stay focused with all those options.

Hey all, has anyone else tried this? Looks like he’s sending a stop command at the end of each sequence and a restart command at the beginning of each new one so that the “next sequence” function isn’t 4-bars late? This has always been kind of an issue with having the MPC1000 as the master midi decider for the Elektron gear. Not sure if the 1000 with jjos can do the same but I’ll try after work today.


edit: So I wrote all this at the end of work yesterday and forgot to hit send. I tried it with the 1000 and initial testing seems to work.

I made a program called Octatrack on the MPC in track 1 that sends midi out on the auto channel 11. I made Sequence 1 a 4 bar loop. In the ‘step edit’ list I put a Note 35 on 1.1.00 and Note 34 on 4.4.95 (this was slightly different from the video, on the Live he was able to put Note 34 on 9.1.00?). I then enabled program change on OT midi 11 and turned on PC on the 1000. Now when using the Next Sequence control on the MPC 1000 it does not wait the additional 4 bars after the MPC changes, which is awesome. I guess this would only work with Elektrons that respond to these note commands though…

Been considering a Live 2 to use with OT, but the program change delay thing was always putting me off. Hopefully someone with both can test! Would be interested if the start/stop timing ends up getting janky.

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edit^2: I also had to copy/paste Sequence 1 to the first bank of 16 sequences on the MPC, forgot that part…

edit^3: Damn, it was late when I was doing all this… It also may have ended up being Note 33 for Stop instead of 34 when I dd it. Like maybe the implementation had changed.

…there is no better in the world of the TWO best sequencer concepts in hardware out there…

elektron does the most flexible versatile 64steps xox style job…
while mpc does the tight no matter what daw style grid thing with most eloquent linn style shuffle plus fingerdrumming whatever comes along…

BOTH able to talk to external midi stuff and spending hard sync to whatever’s crossing ur mind…

no durther discussion needed…

The obvious things the MPC brings to the table with any Elektron device are longer and more intricate sequencing, and the ability to record to very long samples and audio tracks (Octatrack notwithstanding). The Elektrons have superior pattern-based sequencing and are better at being left to shoulder some of the work (e.g. with trig conditions). I’d say any Elektron makes a great addition to an MPC, and vice-versa - there’s very little redundancy. You could probably approximate a great many Elektron sounds on the MPC, especially with the new update - but it’s often the Elektron workflow that leads you to great sounds and sequences, and that’s something the MPC can’t replicate (and to be fair, it doesn’t try - it has its own areas of focus).

If you’ve got both, get them hooked up and start experimenting! Sample in from the Elektron and add MPC effects, build some tracks in the MPC’s looper, put MPC drums through the A4 filters, sample a loop and integrate the sample with the original loop, build A4 drum kits… endless fun. If the MPC gets the Force’s MIDI macro features in the next update, it’ll push things even further. Grand times.


My favourite way to work with the two is to start the loops and phrases on the MPC, export the individual loop stems, and import them into the Octatrack for performance. But you could also just as easily route the audio from MPC into the Octatrack and use it as a performance mixer. Best of luck!

This is really inspiring! I am feeling increasingly glad that I did not sell my MPC One when I picked up the OT.

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I want to get good at using the auto sampler in the MPC, sample my various synths, including mixes of several together, and then export them in some fashion, either as loops, one-shots, or even sequences or arps, to the OT, and then use the OT in conjunction with the MPC (and other gear) back to Logic for final song creation. Have a lot to learn to get there, but excited to learn.

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A nice thing to do is sequencing the MPC from an Elektron sequencer, then when you want to move on or you need to free up a track or want to use only the Mpc for a live, just arm the track, disable quantise, press record. Kinda nice to record all the random and retriggers from an Elektron into an MPC.


It is quite handy that the OT can be connected via USB to the MPC, for moving samples around, as they both use the same sample format, works well.


I can say, that I’m having a blast using my DT with my MPC. I’ve been using both sequencers synced up to my DAW (Bitwig), and it’s been great using them together.


Nice to hear!

Wow! So just get OT in disk mode, and it shows up?

Yes, it does show up like @darenager said. Now you can use the samples that are stored on the OT in the MPC. Really great!