Hello World Octatrack


Wondering if someone could help me get started with some Octatrack advice.

I have owned one of these for a while -

which has been great fun but somewhat limiting. Then (probably like many) super- inspired by this -

  • I bought an Octatrack.

Now clearly Cenk has quite a bit of extra kit here, so not expecting to do anything like this in the short term! - would jtust like to get started maybe manipulating some samples generated by my Pico.

But I have found the Octatrack manual just totally overwhelming, the range of different options available - very hard to know where to start.

It strikes me there are two paths I might follow initially -

  • record a sequence from the Pico into an Octatrack buffer, and manipulate that

  • upload the one- shot Pico Drum sounds into the Octactrack and somehow bind each one to a different key, so I can explore it a bit like a drum machine

To reiterate I’m not looking so do anything fancy here, nothing more than get my two machines connected and start exploring the Octatrack with some Pico- generated sounds

Does one of these options sound like a simpler way to proceed, and if so could someone point me in the right direction ?

Thanks in advance and looking forward to exploring :slight_smile:

Make your own sample chains using your modular. That should keep you very busy. Can all be done in the OT.

Dont worry about learning the whole machine. Just start with one thing. And go from there. Enjoy!


Start slow. OT has some drum chains from factory. Use those to make beat, sequence Pico add FX sample, add another line, resample. Feel happy :sunny: This should keep you busy for a while :slight_smile:
Check out Cuckoo’s videos for introduction

and this one for sampling

Look up stuff in manual as you encounter some puzzles. Keep exploring.

going to echo, just take it in small pieces. It gets overwhelming otherwise. Bonus is you will be super hard pressed to run out of new uses for it.

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Far more helpful than the manual–and I like the manual, but it doesn’t do a good job of easing you into the Octatrack. To me it’s better served as a reference as in “How do I initiate a trigless trig, again? What button combination brings up the AED?” etc.

Sounds like you’ve got your first goal, and that’s important. Get sound into the Octatrack and manipulate it…Seems feasible! Recording into the OT is, imo, the most difficult part about it (funny huh?) with a lot of different terms and conditions to wrap your head around. Once you get sound into it, then the fun can begin.

You can also always just load sounds from your computer onto the CF card if you want to get started playing and manipulating. Keep it simple at first, and upload some drum sounds to your Octatrack. Then, you’ll have eight drum hits to manipulate and play like a drum machine as you requested…You will quickly find this is the least efficient way of producing drum parts on the Octatrack (as it takes up all eight tracks and only leaves you with eight drum sounds within reach) but cross that bridge when you get there. Don’t overwhelm yourself!

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If you want to keep it ultra simple, just hook up the out of your Pico to one of the ins of the OT, and learn how to sample manually, without sync or fancy options, just good ol’ audio rec. Then learn how to save what you just rec in the buffers. Then have fun twisting it inside the OT.

That’s basically where I am in the OT skillmap and there’s already a lot to have fun with.

Later on, you can check how to sequence the Pico with the OT while sampling it and mangling it in realtime, but that’s already level 2.

Thanks for all the advice. I will check out Merlin’s guide and the videos and be back with more dumb questions soon!

Today it’s 20 days that the Octa is with me, so I was in the same boat recently…and still am.
I still have a world of things to learn and experiment, but also have already transfered and rebuilded 2 complete tracks from Cubase to the Octa and even created some patterns to “link”…or better…mix those tracks into a live performance.
I can suggest you what is working for me to learn:
I went thru the Merlin’s guide before buying the Octa to just have an overall idea of what the instrument is capable of, and if could offer me what I needed. Than had a look here at some threads about live acts on the Octa (what I am planning to do) and some about midi stuff…
Than I prepared the drum and melodic samples from my tracks and also some backing track.
As I got the Octa I transfered the material previously prepared in it and printed a copy of the manual…than went straight thru it, page by page, trying to do immediately what the manual explained…and after some day I started loosing myself jamming/experimenting with functions I still had to read on the manual. And this is good!
Than comes the funny part of the story: I became quite enthusiast about the Octa and took a week off-work just to learn it better and faster :rofl::rofl::rofl:
Anyway, plan to do one step at a time, learn every section well before jumping to another and take time between them to jam and have fun using those functions you learned day by day…and if you forget something, go back on the manual and quickly read again. Also check often the machines and FXs reference section of the manual when you meet something you don’t know and day by day you’ll get more in touch with your new instrument.
Often I discovered functions that made me take the decision of rewriting a lot of my patterns to get benefit from them (conditional trigs are just an example)…don’t esitate to take your time and DO IT. Better doing this now than when you’ll have tons of patterns and samples :wink:
When away from the Octa I watched also a lot of tutorials and videos on Youtube, they can give you ideas and help keeping memory of what you learned on the manual. Also in this forum I found good explainations for functions I didn’t understand or couldn’t figure out when and why use them.
Than take a day just to jam. One day for sampling, one for midi, one for both, one for writing some scene…soon you will have more and more fun rather than “manual-diving”.
Well…this is what is working for me and is giving me satisfactions.
Have fun and a nice day!!!




I did find this online course helped to accelerate my adoption of the Octatrack.

It gave me a good grounding to then go off and explore other tutorial videos on YouTube.