Some thoughts on buying a MD?

Hey Elektronauts!

I am quite happy with my big Elektrons (OT/AR/A4) - and probably I don’t NEED a MD -
but I am excited …

Any Ideas or advises on “which unit to buy”?
In the end I am not interested in any sampling capabilities, but while having a quick look - MKII might be a good idea, due to the fact that PSU.2 is still in production?

More aspects, maintenance (batteries to be replaced), burnt screens, known issues or other facts that should be considered?

Thanks for your help!



Mk2 definitely. With OT and AR, especially if it’s a mk2, you don’t need the sampling capability and you will save yourself a lot of money.

Definitely worth getting one, by the way. I think you might be surprised at how different it is to the ones you currently have. It’s a very focused drum machine, very precise.


I would say UW is the icing on the cake. The RAM machines adds a ton of flavor, creativity and great mistakes.



12-bit grit.


You really don’t need UW if you already have an Octatrack. I do use it, but sampling on the MD is a lot more tedious than on the OT.


ok I am in and purchased my SPS // mkII on eBay this morning.
Really excited to compare it against my AR…

(I prefer synthesis over sampling, mainly lacking of ideas on ‘what-to-sample’)…

How often does the battery needs to be swapped?
Can is this doable in a DIY manner - or do I have to send the unit to Sweden?

While just having a first glance at the manual, I was wondering if CONDITIONAL TRIGS are also available in MD?



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No conditional trigs on MD.


ok -that’s :cry:

You can have conditional trigs on the MD by sequencing it with OT of course.


…be aware of the fact, that once u go beyond three swedish instruments at once in realtime, remaining overview climbs expotential…no matter how good u know them individually… :wink:

can’t agree on once u got ot, no further sampling’s needed…
the uw sampling option is a very different kind of thing on it’s own, with it’s melt/layer option likewise found in the rytm, where it’s also a different piece of cake again…

but, if i oversee ur gear by now, u might miss out on further synth options…
truu analog charme is more than covered with the a4…
but all other sides of synthesis ain’t…
so, if ur thinking back to first generation days of elektron u might consider…monomachine.
same same but very different to machinedrum…and a bit cheaper to catch out there…
covers most of machinedrums magic AND goes beyond…

but to be honest…with that swedish trinity u got, i can’t imagine what u could be missing…
and keep in mind…machinedrum AND monomachine magic is about to return soonishish…somehow combined in a digi squarefootprint…even some sid vibes will be back…

so before spending money on secondhand units, u might wanna hold ur gas and enthusiasm back for a further minute to come… :wink:


Re: MD resampling, it’s an easy way to add retrigs, or backward sounds.
Plus the retrig is different than on OT, the range it has stays in the ear-ok field IMO, plus with MD filters it has a sound that is really beautiful and does match with the other sounds.
An easy way to go in glitching territories with little effort, while staying on MD sound signature…


I would miss having -UW on my Machinedrum. Perhaps if you only use it with your other Elektrons but as a standalone sequenced instrument it adds a lot both in expanding your sound palette but also in rhythmic opportunities when resampling.

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Hmm - patience is not my personal strength! I would expect rather an M:XX based unit than a big box or a Digi-based box. The community is waiting for OT MK III for quite some time - not sure if there will be ever one at all…

While having a look at pricings on the new A4/AR-releases: It seems still reasonable for me to buy 2nd hand at fair pricing.

In the end I am not missing anything anything with my gray trinity (actually I mainly hook up AR and A4). OT is my midi sequencer to sequence Nava 909 and two XoXboXes.

While listening to some MD-Jams yesterday I was literally blown away by the sound.
AR as an awesome machine - but - at least for me - it is not easy to sound the analog machines super-awesome (for sure should invest more time in the unit).

Can’t wait to have the machine here! It should be an addition to the setup and not replace any unit. Could also imagine to sync it to an M:C😏

What do you mean by this?

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I never thought that internet was a dangerous place, until I figured myself in a scenario with some guy suggesting me to buy a Machinedrum that’s NOT UW, and Me listening to him


Wishful thinking

The UW aspect ends up adding an additional $500 at least to the unit. To some (especially to an individual who has an OT and AR) this is a bit unnecessary and a waste of money

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The battery should last for several years; you could ask the seller if they ever changed it.

Depending on the date of production, the MD might have a removable battery or a soldered-in battery. If the former then it’s easy to replace yourself. If it’s soldered in then someone with basic soldering capability ought to be able to replace it (I recently chose to send my MD MkII to an Elektron workshop to perform the replacement).

Any local music tech should be able to replace a soldered in battery for you, there’s nothing fancy about it. If you have a mk2 it’s likely not soldered in, and as long as you’re careful it’s not a big deal to open it up and replace the battery.

Clearly you never owned a MDUW and/or you’ve never seen this vid: