OT Science Lab - 1 year study - who’s up for it? [LAUNCHED]

Easy there fella… Nobody is making anybody do anything. Many of us have been talking with Darenager for years, he had a creative idea to share with the community here. Did you even read the post, it kinda says to come up with your own rules and just gives examples. This could actually lead to tons of useful shared knowledge for the OT community, which if you interact with more you’ll find that OP is a part of, and then won’t be some “rando”…

I highly doubt anyone will read this and start feeling forced into Octatracking for a year against their will… Everything will be OK, don’t worry…


Great idea. Perfect timing.

  1. Will there be an official start and end date so we all kind of kick off and celebrate together?
  2. Just to be clear on the MIDI sequencing front, I can sequence, say, my modular and sample that?
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There’s a difference between sharing creative ideas and asking people to sign up for a year-long commitment. Why not separate the concept from the timeline? Maybe start with a month and see how that goes.

Ok so it looks like there is a bit of intetest, great!

I’ll just re-iterate the point that it absolutely doesn’t mean just use only the Octatrack for a year and leave all your other gear alone, but for the work(s) of this Science Lab then just use the Octatrack.
The idea being it is a commitment to whenever it takes your fancy within a 1 year period to just focus on the Octatrack with the goal being at the end of the year to have a bunch of stuff just made on the Octatrack and hopefully learning a lot of new techniques and processes along the way.

For myself I envisage some days I’ll just fire up the beast for a spare half an hour and see what emerges, then other times I will take a bit more time and give myself an arbitrary set of rules to follow, which may evolve into a different concept than first imagined.
I’ll probably try to work in genres that I have not tried before and I’ll definitely try to use it in ways that I have not before, like one shot statics and plays free improvisations and so on.


There’s no contract to sign and we’ve been doing month long science labs for years now. The OT is very deep and highly underestimated, the community could benefit from some deep research and sharing. It might seem weird if your just reading this but as someone who’s been reading the forum for some years and has an idea of the general interest of the community, it seems very harmless and I imagine folks will be interested. It’s for the benefit of all Octatrackers users, a community research endevour… It’s a positive thing…

  1. It will probably be better if we did have an official start date and end date, but if anyone misses out or can’t make the dates work, or wants to participate in the future etc. then that user could join in at anytime and log in the thread when they start and remember to post links to their work when and if they complete a year later.
  2. Yes I think that it is important to make this distinction - the act of sampling it into the OT is key here, and besides if you stumble onto something that you don’t want to restict to these conditions there is nothing to stop you from either not following the rules and not entering it, or make a copy of the project and have 2 versions. I think for me it will be interesting to do this as the Octatrack will undoubtedly lead me to a different result than the modular being sequenced vs sampled.
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It would really be nice if a side product would be a kind of “Merlins Guide Part 2: From Rookie to Master”, because the original Guide stops way too soon (doesn’t cover any more advanced scenarios).


You are more than welcome to participate or not, and you are also welcome to start your own science lab with a month duration and any rules that you choose.


This sounds ace. I’m spending more time on other things than music making right now and it might be fun to spend the time I do dedicate to music on one thing

Count me in.


I’ll probably do a bit of documentation for my entries and possibly some video too, I have no idea how much I will get done in a year nor how regularly I will do something, but once I put it down in writing and commit to it I believe I have a chance of ending up with at least something at the end of it.


I’d love to join. :loopy: It’s my default way of working to use only the Octatrack (analogue inputs plus 4-6 static tracks). Just now starting to play around again with sampling in my usual manner with pickup machines and having flex tracks playing that buffer back.


Thanks Bradley you are always a positive influence around here :handshake:


One other question, when you say “no external FX” does that mean “no FX whatsoever, including say, the onboard delay on a monosynth” or “no external FX to polish or shape the final output.”

I’m in either way. The former case would be a more interesting constraint but so many synths have onboard FX these days it might be hard to forget to unpatch them.


I read this as “no explicit external FX device” like a reverb pedal or an analog heat or something like this. If the FX is already part of a sample I wouldn’t bother, because in most cases you won’t be apply to diffentiate if something is an FX or part of the sound generation.


@nutritional_zero yes just no external fx applied to the Octatrack from other sources, and I think a good reason for this is because it will make us try to get it sounding as good as possible using the Octatrack. If in the case you finish a track and think it needs a little extra polish then it should be considered ok to record it, then reload it as a static and use the Octatrack for mastering/polish.

Im interested. But how much can a newb contribute?


That is the point I guess, I bet a year of Octatrack focus will be of benefit to anyone, I had mine since the beta days (2011?) and I still have not tried everything it can do, the possibilities are endless, so by focusing on it I hope to learn more but I also know that I won’t have exhausted all the possibilities or ideas.


Weird Science :slight_smile:


I’m envious of those for whom this project is even a possibility.

Godspeed and good luck all you Octatrack-loving randos!


That’s the spirit! The weirder the better :wink:

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