Resolution of the sequencers ...Do I need a Pyramid?



I am thinking a lot lately about how to tackle the problem of the OT’s capabilities to record smooth MIDI CC filter sweeps or even do glides and stuff.

There is the Pyramid who can do exactly that but it is pretty expensive and I would end up not using the elektron MiDi features at all probably - though I really like it except of the imho important features/resolution it is lacking.

So are there any alternatives to the Pyramid who maybe could fill in the gaps the OT is creating? I have the feeling I would end up working more in Pyramid than with my Elektron gear for recording e.g. filter sweeps. Maybe a PD patch stepping in to play smooth filter sweeps or even interpolate or some other wizardry?

What about resolution of the Digitone / Digitakt - are they higher resolution (MIDI and local ‘non-MIDI’ tracks) for sweeps etc.?

What are your thought on this?


The market for hardware sequencers seems to be very thin these days. The Pyramid is on the lower end in respect of the price. From there it goes only upwards… Cirklon, Schrittmacher or DIY Midibox Seq v4(+) are more or less twice or three times expensive. I wanted to sell my Pyramid but I will keep it now for what it is: a damn fine hw-sequencer… In respect to your smooth MIDI CC recording I can only say that I have no issues with those recordings…




Could you elaborate? You are using a MPC for that kind of work?

Would an MPC Live be a good companion for my needs maybe?


I bought it for that stuff, polyphony, midi overdub. I had MPC 2000XL and 1000 before, so I thought I would absolutely need these functionalities with OT, but I use OT only for the moment.

Mpc 500 is really cheap and small, so I keep it.

Check that topic.


You could also pick up a Roland MV-8000 or 8800 and gain a killer 32 channel sequencer along with a fantastic sampler and DAW in a box for less than the price of a Pyramid. The sliders are assignable and it records at 480 PPQN.

The size of the MV may be a downside and the audio output expander is nearly impossible to find, especially if you live in Europe.


Social Entropy Engine is very affordable, very close to a Cirklon and excellent workflow. Recommend it!


But it is a step sequencer no? No linear / continuous recording?


Oh yeah, that’s right. I think the maker was talking about adding that a couple of years back though. Might be in it now. I don’t have mine any longer.


Didn’t see that in the recent specs. The black version is nice.
I don’t remember why I tuned a car with it… :sketchy: :content:


wow… looks really nice and seems to be fitting perfectly into elektron workflow. Though they are sold out…


I still have a few questions I don’t know if a Pyramid or the Social Entropy Engine would solve the problem since they are also step sequencers.

Let’s say I have a pattern @ BPM is 30 … and I want to record a wobbly filter sweep - would those machines be able to capture that properly or would I end up with a similar / only slightly better result as with the Octatrack?


Ableton Push would obviously let you do smooth automation, if you don’t mind a computer in the setup. :slight_smile:


So I guess you are saying that it won’t work even with the Pyramid? I suppose I’d need something timeline based …like an MPC Live for example? If I don’t want something in my chain …then it’s a computer.


Pyramid seems capable of linear recording.

Mpc 1000 is pretty efficient too. I have to check Mpc 500 for CC recording.


MPC 1000 is a great companion. MPC live doesn’t have automation lanes standalone (unless it’s had an update recently.) You can edit cc automation in detail on MPC1k


I just convinced myself that there is no way around a Pyramid with elektron Gear. Also 64 Tracks … 3 MIDI outs (2 DIN + 1 USB - so 48 MIDI Channels - I guess that is enough for a starter) - wish it had 2 MIDI ins as well - that’d be the bomb! Imagine the possibilities! Endless possibilites!


I really dislike the style of those… they look sooo cheap in my eyes.


Always functionality first for me. With old mpcs it’s kind of up to you to make something of it. Mine is custom all black with all upgrades, there’s some really nice ones out there. Mines like the bottom one



if i had a choice i’d probably use pyramid over engine (i’ve had them both).

purely because its more modern overall , multiple sequence types , easy to backup , an active forum / community , can be found more easily and more cheaply , has built in cv / gate , has a screen (allowing more complex sequencing and easier to edit).

if you want filter sweeps you could of course use lfo but it has limited lfo types (or use lfo designer on OT) , but it depends if you want to sequence it yourself (… i’m guessing you want to set a few values and have it glide between them? or just record your performance.) .
also be mindful of the synth you are using , something old like matrix1000 is limited to how smooth you can alter parameters (its better with the newer firmwares though).

i’m pretty sure pyramid can do main sequences at 30 and another one with a clock multiplyer or divider if you wanted higher resolution , you can have a few tracks on the same midi channel , one used for notes and the other for midi cc (and the fact it can use definition files can help with cc labels being displayed within the sequencer )

the engine is fine , xox box style sequencer but updates are very slow , support a bit limited , they’re a little tricky to get and quite expensive if you want cv .

both devices need a lot of button combo’s to get what you want out of them , pyramid screen helps but its a bit small .

In the end i stuck with elektron sequencing (OT / Digitakt etc) , mostly for the convenience of 1 box that can make sounds and sequence + potentially sequence external gear.

at a basic level , if you are running a normal pattern at 30 , you have 1 step to put data on (cc value) so i’d suggest looking at multiple pattern speeds/multipliers / polyrhythms or whatever they’re called.

or just record a big long sample of the synth/filter sweep and drop it into a static track on the octatrack… it’ll repeat , but makes things simple and you an always use octatrack filter over the top for some extra audible changes.