Underwhelmed by the Octatrack Mk2, looking for advice!


Some great info here.
My only advice would be to get something to “colour” :rainbow_flag: your synths before the Ot’s inputs, like a compressor :clamp: then you also can get a nice hot input level.


Glad things worked out so far.
Ironically, engaging in this post prompted me to recheck my Control Mem settings ,… which I thought I had reset once upon a time.

Alas, Flex and Rec bit rates were back to 16bit :rage:… this is why it becomes very noticeable to me when recording acoustic instruments ( guitar , bass, upright bass)

Lesson , these might reset to default if you start a whole new SET . So check these periodically if beginning a whole new SET ( eg, for sampling instruments ) .

However, there might be some RAM limitations ( particularly with FLEX machines ) when using 24 bit .


For me, I shifted to 24-bit after sampling the Continuum fingerboard in 16-bit. The Continuum is super high resolution and with complex overtones that I felt took a hit in 16-bit. It sounds noticeably better in 24-bit for me. So much better actually that I suspect there might even be something subtly wrong in the AD conversion in 16-bit. I’ve described this and reported it to the Elektron feedback form. If many of you are having the same issue with 16-bit sampling I’d urge each and every one of you to report it to a Elektron so that they get an impression of how wide spread this is.


I had the same 16bit experience. Had it not been for the significant improvement with 24, I would have sold the OT, no doubt.


You might have to wait a while before an analogue sampler comes out mate!


When I had my OT, I changed to 24-bit the first time I turned it on… it’s always made a big difference for me in every aspect of audio production so I would never record 16-bit if possible. But it sounds like there might even be further reason on the OT.


A4 plus DT = super awesomeness, without any of the scary OT stuff.


Yes! Just waiting a little for news on new AKmk2 :wink:


EDIT: just to be completely clear and avoid spreading any speculation as fact if someone reads this post a year from now, this is all 100% speculation based on casual listening and could easily be completely wrong!

My suspicion is that everything is always converted at 24 bit and gets converted down to 16 in software without any kind of dither (just truncating the least significant 8 bits) if you’re working at 16. The way working at 16 affects the sound quality is VERY similar (to my ears, anyway) to the difference between correctly dithered and undithered bitrate conversion - a kind of subtle “plastic” quality (I know it’s a really vague term but it absolutely captures the sound, I don’t think it’s a coincidence that a lot of people use it), and kind of a one dimensional quality. When I first got a proper interface (MOTU 828, not really that great sounding but a lot better than using a bunch of Sound Blaster AWE64’s like I’d been doing before that) I used to describe the difference between 16 and 24 bit audio in general as being like the difference between looking at a very high quality, life size photo of a window vs. looking out of an actual window, but it turns out I wasn’t dithering correctly (back then DAWs didn’t always dither by default) and the difference got smaller after that. The OT at 16 bit has a very similar sound.

EDIT: Also, if I prepare a sample on the computer and load it into the OT over USB I typically save it as 16 bit and don’t have the same loss in sound quality when it’s in the OT, which obviously could be the converters themselves not working properly in 16 but but it could also be because if I convert to 16 in the computer I’m always dithering correctly. On top of everything else, if people are generally recording a bit on the low side it the OT (because it’s easier to err on the side of caution that to push it too hot and get digital clipping) that would also bring the truncation artifacts up more relative to the audio.


For clarify I’ll add that I turned 24 bit on for recording and flex in my first week with OT and have left it there ever since, so everything I’ve ever said about the sound is based off those settings… :slight_smile:


Same here. The only time I use 16 is if I load stuff in via USB, because I figure it saves a little disc space and converting from 16 to 24 is just a matter of adding a few empty bits that shouldn’t (and doesn’t seem to) have any negative impact on the way the samples sound.


Can anyone comment on whether they’ve noticed any difference in quality when transferring via USB vs. the OT Mk2 inputs with proper settings and gain staging?

I think with USB there isn’t any noticeable quality difference.

On another note, since the OT has digital effects, is there any chance elektron would amp up the effects in a future update? Probably wishful thinking but that’d be great


Check @avantronica’s audio test !


Just listened, its a pretty minimal difference there. Noticeable in the peaks if you are really looking for it. I’d be curious to see the same test done on the Mk2.


Yeah, it’s really subtle, and the kind of thing that I think would only be worth worrying about if you were passing signals through the OT without actually doing any processing, in context of what the OT does it really isn’t something that bothers me at all.


Out of all the Elektrons, the OT is the least inspiring sonically in my opinion. Yet. The most feature rich. Go figure.

The AR comes in a close second.

The A4 MK2 is a very nice machine though.


For the record I don’t think the OT has any kind of superior sound quality, I consider it plenty good enough for what you get out of it, and certainly suitable to rock live performances…
I don’t mind recording it either, but it’s not the best sounding piece in my studio.

Just saying this because things get lost along the way, I try to tell people that it’s perfectly usable, but not that it’s the pinnacle of sound quality or anything…


automate the amp volume with a midi controller from -64 to 0. you loose the amp regulation vol but u can mute the track and the efx will blend out.


I did a little wxperiment last night. Recorded the ballsiest of my synths, the SEM Pro, into ableton and then transferred via USB to the OT and played it back to see if there was a difference.

I’ll get you guys the files to listen to when I get a chance so you can hear yourselves.


I’ve been contemplating the OT MK2 lately, but hearing the disparaging comments regarding the FX always makes me lose interest. I love the reverb and delay on the Digitakt, and look forward to trying them out on all types of sounds. Everything right there, ready to go, in that compact little box, is what is so appealing. Having to rely of outboard effects would kind of kill that for me.