Teenage Engeering PO-33 Sampler


Haha, the saying just popped in my head then I looked it up and remembered after watching, funny how some things are just lodged in there…
Lincoln Logs, Chutes and Ladders, Sorry, Legos, Etch a Sketch, Lite Brite, GI Joe/Star Wars action figures, Voltron, Hot Wheels, Matchbox Cars, Stompers…
Ahhh, those were the days. :slight_smile:


(just to bring it back on topic)

And the commercials for those things, if they can be found, make fine sample fodder for the PO-33.


There. Bought it. Bloody lovely.


woah, thanks man! Really appreciate it!


Not at all, it’s good stuff. Very funky. I’ve listened to it all morning now, I like that the tracks are so densely packed together, more like they’re really just one thing split up into three takes. Despite the all the complexity going on, the funk’s still catchy. Great work!


They’ll never sound like an SP12 or even an SP-303. C’mon, they’re just Pocket Operators. So when it comes to fidelity, we must manage our expectations accordingly.

Apple managed to squeeze 2GB into the Apple Schuffle a couple of years back with high fidelity so if TE wanted the PO-33 to have the same sampling rate & resolution as the SP1200 (12-bit / 26.04 kHz sampling rate ) woudn´t have been an impossible task. I think using 8-bit it is a deliberate choice of either sound quality or profit margin.


That was a very poor example. The iPod Shuffle (yes, I used to have one… 13 years ago) and a Pocket Operator are worlds away from each other, not only in engineering, but in manufacturing process, supply chain resources, and sheer economies of scale. All of the things that Teenage Engineering does not have in comparison.

It’s not about it being an impossible task. Nor is it about profit margins. Teenage Engineering simply doesn’t have the resources that Apple does. No one does.


I think everything in the PO33 is deliberate. If you don’t like mulaw audio running at below 44.1k, this product is not for you. simples. Plenty of ”transparent” samplers to choose from on the markets.


No, no, no. We need to talk about profit margins and business models and what Teenage Engineering could’ve done if they weren’t so greedy or whatever. :joy:


yeah right I forgot the whooping 99 EURO price tag!!!1111 outrage


So you are saying that is why TE can´t get past the 8-bit, 40 sec sample time because they didn´t have the resources to find, manufacture, fit into budget nor have the engineering skills to use a more high end sampling chip than that? Meh. Come on.


I think all the POs use the same chip


You are missing the point. I wasn´t saying they were greedy.


I think all the POs use the same chip

That makes more sense.


I think TE could probably make a “KO Pro” sampler with higher sampling resolution and 5-10x more sampling time and charge around $30 more for it, and it would sell. But as others have said, it’s a deliberate design decision. The POs are gritty, scrappy, accessible little things you grab and make music with immediately. They’re inspired by those game watches in the 80s, and TE never wants to make the mistake of taking the idea too seriously and losing the small core focus of the POs (but that doesn’t mean you should underestimate them). The design philosophy is all about one-function-one-PO, and each with a very small, readily grasped and tweakable, but very useful and potentially deep set of functions, all focused around making music quickly and easily. If you had endless sampling time you might spend more time building up a sample library than you did having fun with the PO-33. If you had higher sampling rates then there would be lots of sounds that don’t sound inspiring, because there’s nothing inherently musical happening in them, whereas with the 8-bit sampling, your samples are instantly transformed into something with a bit of grit and character right out of the gate. Even recording traffic on a street sounds kinda cool and usable in your productions once there’s that sweet bit reduction. Could there be a bit reduction parameter? Sure, but TE already had to make a design decision about how many parameter pages to allow (tone, filter, and trim), and I trust that they arrived at that small but useful set of parameters because adding more felt like menu diving, which was the anthesis of the fun pocket operator experience they envisioned. I admire TE as a company that thinks very carefully about the end experience they want to provide, and never departs from that experience in any aspect of their designs. It’s something Apple used to pride itself on back when Steve Jobs was running a tighter ship.


Great points vaporlanes. I’ve been sampling into it just to see what it will do to the sound. & like someone else said it’s so simple & fast. It’s about having fun. Yeah it has it’s limitations, but it’s a $90 sampler the size of a credit card… I’m mind blown by the features packed into it. & the quality of the tuning is surprisingly good. Too be honest if it wasn’t 8 bit I probably wouldn’t have bought it. I have plenty of samplers…being 8 bit gives me a different sound I can add to my productions. I love textures in sound tho. I’m gonna run it thru the Heat tonight, I bet it’ll sound great thru that.
I want to use it for field recordings as well…it samples fast & it’s easy to take everywhere.


Possibly of interest to pocket operators who also own an OP-1


Just dropped a little PO-33 only ep for fun :smiley:

Unlimited inspiration every time I pick this little guy up!


doesn’t really sound that lofi to ne - sound pretty dope!

Nice to hear some footwkn sounds from a fellow naut


EDIT: Just realized the track names are all emoji’s - Your not worried about radio etc not being able to play your music because they cannot file the song names to the copyright reporting systems? :diddly:


(Excuse the shameless reposting)

I’ve written a guide for the PO35. I’ll be starting on the PO32 and PO33 as soon as possible.