Pattern change one bar late issue

Sadly MIDI 2 still can’t time-travel… :wink:


The MIDI transmission latency between the 2 devices which stand side-by-side should be less than 2ms. When the first note of my new pattern would come 2ms late I wouldn´t hear that.
Of course I have no clue about the time the elektron devices need to handle the pattern change.

@hazer Your topic is kind of passive aggressive with the capital imho … maybe change it

This is really what the flags are there for to be fair - the title has been on our radar, so it has been changed, but flagging it the next time is probably simplest :thup:


For MPC guys: The easiest way to queue your Program Changes is in the Step Edit window.

If you insert a Program Change on the last step of the pattern, it will change Elektron pattern without being a bar off.

1/8 Note Value gives enough time for the change to happen.

Example: 6 bar pattern with a Change every second bar.

Note: The original Program was 40, so when you are letting the pattern loop (while feeling things out), you always want it to reset to where you started. I hope that makes a little sense.


After all this I wrote a ticket and that’s their answer :

When a program change message is sent to an Elektron device, the corresponding pattern is cued for change. This means that the program change needs to be received a few ms before the pattern change is supposed to happen. When for example sending a program change from Ableton, you will need to use a negative track delay for the track/clip in order for the program change to be sent early enough for the Elektron device to have time to cue the pattern. The Elektron device can not foresee the future.

This also applies to other gear that is used as master clock. If it sends the program change exactly when the change is supposed to happen, the Elektron device will not have time to cue the pattern. When PROGRAM CHANGE SEND is enabled on an Elektron device that acts as master, the program change will always be sent a few ms early so the receiving Elektron device has time to cue the pattern. That’s why it’s working in an Elektron ecosystem.

In short, if the master device can’t send the program change a few ms before the pattern change is supposed to happen, an Elektron device will always change too late. Using program change for pattern changes is not ideal, and it’s something our current products have inherited from the Machinedrum era. I will talk to our developers and hear if there’s anything we can do differently in the ideal situation you describe, but I suspect that isn’t possible due to how things are implemented, unfortunately.

I don’t know if there will be any update about this. Sorry if my post feels a bit agressive I was mad having this issue with all my Elektron machines… I’ve tried so many things to make this work. Capitals and strong letters was for easiest understanding though.

@Kpucski If I understand correctly I would be supposed to insert a program change event just before the end of the loop ? What if I want this loop to loop twice or even more and toggle the change when I feel the pattern need to change ? I feel like pre-writting the pattern change and pre-writting every single loop length loop would kill my workflow.

For the moment I’ll be honest, my Digitakt is collecting dust since I have this MPC. And my digitakt was the brain of my setup. I still use the synths (A4, Digitone) but not the built-in sequencer (or I sample it when needed).

An option on the settings, to activate the oldschool working midi mode would be great. And the oldschool midi mode is nothing else than a direct pattern change, because if it can cue the pattern, I think it can change the pattern…


It’s as simple as they say it is. Send the program change before the end of the pattern. All Elektron gear works this way.


If you have AF, Digitakt & Digitone… just use them together as they were intended
they alone are are enough to make good music… use the mpc in a different setup with your other gear

That’s a great response imo. They’ve understood your frustrations and gone to great lengths to explain the situation. All that was said by the support team makes perfect sense to me.


If you create a midi track for your Program Change channel, you can use the jog wheel to flip between programs on MPC.

For the above photo, I have programs on #’s 48-53 on Elektron sequencer, and I can flip between all of them manually without using step edit. As long as you turn before the end of a sequence, it jumps to whichever pattern you want. JJOS might be slightly different but it should work the same way.

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What gears are you use, A4 have song aranger too. why you dont use A4 as master and other gears as slave ? I have Octatrack as master and other gears Slave - Digitakt, Digiton and Akai MPC live… All work perfect and all machine use own sequencer.


I have used the Analog four as Master program change and the Digitakt as master clock for the past years.
I prefer much more having the MPC live as master PC and clock for all my gear because it’s more convenient for me. The MPC has 4 midi outs and with the JJOS it is an absolute beast that make it obvious being the brain of the set up.

I know that I can PC with the A4 and that’s how I’m doing it but it’s not the purpose of this thread. I want the pattern of slaved elektron gear to change right on time when it is asked by another master machine which is not an Elektron. Just this.
I prefer to do it with the MPC because it is the brain of the set up and I’m always using it. I’m always in front of the MPC and if I want to jam only with the MPC and Digitakt/Digitone I would have to connect the A4 just for the PC ? Come on… this doesn’t looks like complicated to integrate an option.
Also the song mode on the MPC is much better to organize

@Kpucski If I understand correctly you change the number of PC everytime you want to change the sequence on Elektron gear ? I have tried this and yes it work but I find this a bit disconcerting.
I just want to change my pattern from Sequence 01 to Sequence 02 on the MPC and all the Elektron gear to follow right on time !!! Not having to change the number of the right settings at the right bar so the Elektron can follow :tired_face:. Morever this way I can’t properly use song mode.

For such machines it’s not a crime to ask for a direct pattern change or a way to make this work when it’s slaved.
If it’s not a bug that a slave machines pattern change one bar late then what is it ? Just integrate an option to direct pattern change when PC is received. :pensive:

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If it’s not a bug that a slave machines pattern change one bar late then what is it ? Just integrate an option to direct pattern change when PC is received.

damn. drops mic


Couldn’t this potentially risk changing patterns out of sync? A midi message can’t always be send/received perfectly on time. It’s a serial protocol, so it depends on what else is being sent, right? Also the device that receives the pc has to process it.

Cueing pattern changes work, but making sure a pc message will always be spot on, is that really possible (without cueing a pattern change)? Or would that be negligible?


I know this doesn’t help when using hardware only, but I created Pattern Clips to solve this exact problem.

It only solves the problem if your using Ableton Live and Max to send the program changes though.

It seems fitting for someone who comes across this thread who is using Ableton Live.


Yes. I do this while I’m building the sequences I want in my song. Afterwards, I’ll organize them and arrange into a master “Song Sequence”.

At this point, I insert all the Program/Patch Changes for my Elektrons and whatever else is being used. It takes a bit of planning but it’s not too much hassle when you get the hang of it.

I agree with you that it would be nice to Direct Jump. I think it would probably get pretty choppy with multiple sequencers running.

Just hooked up the rytm to DN for the first time. I had hoped I could utilize song mode on rytm to make a full track with just these 2 boxes and have the patterns change at same time. This doesn’t seem to be the case - DN is changing late.

Is this really “just how it is”?? :frowning:

Do the pattern length settings of the patterns on both machines match (M.LEN / CH.LEN)?

If there is a mismatch they will schedule the change at the same time, but they will not change at the same time.

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I had another look at the lengths of the tracks and possibly it’s a bug or possibly I’m misunderstanding something. My intention was to have a pattern that would change after 64 steps, however potentially have infinite loop so that polymetric stuff would never reset.

So I had

CHLEN: 64.

This didn’t work

However when I change it so that
LEN: 64

M. LEN: 64

It now seems to work, but of course the polymetric stuff will now reset after 64 steps too. I think I can live with this :slight_smile:
thank you!

I would at least submit a support ticket @ to inform them since this behavior is definitely not correct. With the same CH.LEN both devices should switch at the same time, of course.