Six - four - time

Hi there. What’s the best way to go a six - four - time on the digitakt? Thanks in advance!

there are several ways depending on how you want to subdivide it or how many bars you want but here is an example. If you want 1 bar of 6/4 set the scale length to 24/32 or 48/48 for two bars of 6/4.


This ^

But the way my brain works is that seeing 48/48 and not having it line up in 6 evenly really throws me off and messes with my work flow. I would do two patterns of 24 steps so I could clearly see where the weak and strong beats fall.

If you’re trying to subdivide those into triplets (always fun!) I would do two patterns of 18, eachstep making an 8th note triplet.

yeah its really hard with hardware sequencers because all of them (I think) are setup for 4/4 so its never great for visualizing it. I think that the best sequencers for odd meter is just using a daw but hardware is cool, just gotta get over the organization.

The tr8 lets you set step length for a pattern and I think that works on a per page basis… It has pages A/B and I’m pretty sure once you set A to 12 then it just goes to B, which could also be 12. Why no other grooveboxes have done this is beyond me.

Oh didnt even know that, I feel that could be implemented in Elektron too. Skipping instead of going through the whole page right?

I guess Mpc Live could be good for that since it has that dawlike screen.

I could be mistaken, and I sold the thing once I got my MD a couple months ago. But I’m pretty sure that’s how it worked.

and now that I think about it, I don’t think Ive ever heard 6 divided into 16th notes. Just 8th notes and 8th note triplets. So it might be worth considering that you just want your pattern as 12 8th notes… Or even 2 bars of 12 8th notes on one page. Then just set it to 1/2x.

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Great! Thanks everybody!

Last question: do I have to set the time measure to 12/16 then? Thank you?

Yes, at 1/2x (i.e. half speed) a scale length of 12/16 would give you a 6/4 bar divided into 8th notes (by 8th notes I mean quavers). Set to 1x, that would give you a 3/4 bar divided into 16th notes (i.e. semiquavers).


The best kind of quaver is the hemidemisemidemisemiquaver. It’s like cheeky British humor embodied in a 256th note!

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Don’t own a Digitakt, but every Elektron Machine should work in the same way. You should work on a 6/8 basis (12/16 - 30/32 - 48/48 - 60/64). Putting the right things in the right places (i.e. a kick in 1/6 and 3/6 of every bar) is not easy though, but I managed to do that with a simple excel sheet.

Thank you! That gives me something to think about. Maybe I’ll make an excel sheet myself. Great tip!

I am not sure if I understand your question correctly but I usually make triplets over three bars. Two triplets is 6 and then jut fill it up until three bar are filled up.

Then just put a kick on 4/4 on another track and you have triplets vs 16ths. No need to change scale at all. depending on swing wanted other scales could maybe more sufficient although the swing on the DT is also quite ok.

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Are you sure you mean triplets? Are you talking about a repeating rhythm of three 16th notes that goes in and out of phase with a 4/4 kick? Like:


where the bold steps are where the kick is? Because that’s not what triplets are. Triplets would be three evenly spaced notes for every kick on a 4/4 pattern. So, counting:

1-2-3, 1-2-3, 1-2-3, 1-2-3

where the 4/4 kick is on every “1”.

To do triplets on an Elektron box that are in sync with other gear at the same tempo you need to use 3/4x speed on the scale setup.

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Yeah I mean triplets, I’m a drummer. I play 6/8th and 12/8th rhythms all the time and one of my interests is to translate these to my gear. Or in the past my daw, ableton.

Your explanation is correct but: What I meant is to make tracks where the triplets would play together with 16th note patterns, hence the old acid styles and also in techno and actually many music these type of patterns are used regularly.

So I take a triplet pattern and program it on a 4/4 track over three beats of 4/4th or three bars of 4/4th ending again on the first beat which would loop the whole pattern.


In your second example you explain correctly but my interest is to use the two together to get an how would you say, an interchanging effect of 4 against three where 4 is the triple and three the 4 square, however for the listener it still feels like a normal 4 square as the beat just keep repeating and off course you can change that but u would have to program just an interesting and fitting sequence in that case.


Quickest way I know how to do this is with arp settings. Not sure which boxes you’re using (or which have arps for that matter…) but you can play with the arp times until you hear 8th note triplets happening. On my MnM I THINK it’s x8…it’s either x8 or x6.

As for doing what you’re asking with patterns and sequencing I hesitate to say it’s not possible with just one box. Unless the box has different scale values per-track (maybe the Octa does? I really don’t know) you’ll have to do what Finalform said.

Cool - I understand what you mean now, just wanted to be clear about it as if you want to program conventional triplets in tempo sync on Elektron gear you do need to change the scale speed to three quarters.

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For programming triplets, utilizing the retrig on the digitakt is much easier than changing the scale of the track

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