I would like to purchase a sampler / sequencer and have been looking at the Octatrack, since its combination of expressive features seem way cool. On the computer I use Samplitude, Max, Reaktor, etc. so complexity doesn’t bother me. But I hate having arbitrary limits and I fear that some of the Octotrack issues might be show-stoppers.
So what am I looking for?
- no limitation on pattern chaining and song creation
- no arbitrary limits on number of tracks
- ability to create polyrhythms and polymetric patterns
- probabilistic control over events, volume, panning, CC, etc.
- probabilistic selection of patterns (e.g. choose one of three patterns randomly)
- easy transfer of projects to/from computer over USB
- no arbitrary storage limits (SD card)
- able to stream long samples
- unsynchronised tracks for ambient sets
- kits defined independently of patterns (so they can be swapped)
So I have read extensively here and elsewhere. I know about the Octatrack limitations. I think I can live with only eight tracks each of audio and MIDI. I can live with 4-note polyphony. I don’t need ultimate sample editing… can do that on a computer.
I would buy an Octotrack immediately if it was more reasonably priced. Or if it was still 2011.
But at €1300 the Octotrack has various limitations: low sample memory (128 samples in 80 MB), use of legacy CF card, lack of USB transfer, no MIDI over USB, no USB hub, etc. I am worried it will be far too frustrating for someone coming from my background.
I do love the dual stereo outputs and inputs. Every sampler should have that. The looper features are intriguing but not my main priority.
I have found little information on the MIDI features and generative possibilities using probability. All the jargon around p-locks and trigs hurts my head. I guess few people use this as a central sequencer for other gear?
I have also found little data on performance. Can I be streaming four large stereo files while using four tracks for samples without the machine crying?
So, I am looking for advice. Either a) convince me to buy Octotrack in 2019, b) sell me one for €500, or c) recommend something else?