Zoom ARQ


Hula loop?

Quite like the look of this … even just as a controller.

Zoom arq ar-96?

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speaking of zoom… AND UFOs!!!


For the longest time, I didn’t understand the allure of that thing. After that guys performance with it, and especially his reaction afterwards, I KINDA see it(but just can’t get sold on it)


Tried it last week while visiting tokyo, i guess for those that like to move about/dance during live performances its great. It seems interesting but feels a tad goofy, like some sort of videogame controller. But maybe its geared towards people that are using wavedrums/percussion etc to make music. Not cheap either …

But a cool story is that while wavinf it around to test out the motion functions, i spotted (and subsequently bought) prolly the last monomachine mk2+ In the world at sale price :slight_smile:


But you could have bought a zoom arq!!!


Huh, in responding to you I learned that you can’t make a reply that’s all caps. Which is a really special requirement. Thank you Elektron, it’s the little things that count. <3


It looks as though something illegal has taken place between these two… And it was ‘too far gone’ for the medical professionals to intervene.


Lol, in all seriousness I might have bought an Arq to play around with if it was like the equivalent of USD200, but it was like USD650! The store was having a massive clearance and for the exact same price you could get a new OP-1 or Maschine Studio, you’d have to REALLY want one to just walk in and buy it :stuck_out_tongue:


Yeh that price is insane. It should be less than 100, they pushed the idea way way too far.

See, I wouldnt mind having a bunch of girls dancing on stage with me, using these things to remotely modulate various things in a random way… that could be cool in a throwback LSD den kinda way


A number of retailers are blowing these out for about a third of the original MSP, I paid £174 and it arrived 2 days ago, I have had a few hours of playing with it so thought I’d do a little write up, more will be added as I discover anything of interest.

First up it is a weird looking thing, build quality is typical Zoom, the ring which sits on the base and is one of its USPs is a bit odd, I think it seems like a gimmick and it wasn’t a factor in my decision to buy, in fact I would say I’d prefer if it was not removable and had proper buttons (incidentally the newer Arq48 has step buttons) You can remove the ring and wangle it around if you see any point in that, I don’t. Anyway enough of the ring, it works on the base as step entry or to trigger sounds, which is what I will use it for mostly.

The preset patterns were deleted (one by one, ugh) as soon as I had a cursory listen to a few of them, I always do this as I have no interest in them but they can be handy to audition sounds whilst first playing, they seemed to cover a lot of “EDM” and whatnot, cool or kewl or whatever. The internal sounds seem a mixed bunch, the 808 kick is laughable but most of the other drum sounds seem ok, there are quite a lot of them but again I didn’t buy it for these so did not really go into any depth. Same for the synth sounds, pretty modern popular and cheesy mostly.

What interests me about the synth engine is that you have a reasonable rompler type editing section, filters, insert fx, 2 LFO, ADSR, mod envelope, etc, and you can load or sample your own sounds in. It has a SD card slot for recording and storing sounds.

The sampling is pretty good, quality seems fine, you can edit start and end point, sample for a pre-determined number of beats, and assign or save without assigning (assigning automatically saves)

It has a looper which seems ok, I’ll flesh this part out once I have played more.

Midi over mini USB only, got it working with my Oplab though so a Kenton or other USB host should be fine also, sync to midi not fully tested yet, but seems to work.

FX are pretty ok, editable and reasonable selection, with 4 master fx (delay, reverb, filter, master) all available simultaneously with punch in buttons (which can also be latched) each sound can have its own send level for reverb and delay. Each sound can also have its own insert effect with a fairly ok selection including eq, distortion, bit crush etc.

The sequencer is very easy to use, basic all tracks same length, upto 8 bars long, typical x0x style with realtime entry also. It also has piano roll or drum grid display if required, some strange omissions like no obvious way to edit note length or velocity but might be that I have not found these yet. Overall I’d say the sequencer was ok and useable enough for basic stuff, timing seems solid enough.

UI - A lot of the interface seems well thought out and pretty hands on, it is easy to jump from editing a sound to editing a sequence or muting and so on, the dedicated buttons for most things mean menu diving is minimal, the fx buttons are very nice to have, you can easily punch in a delay or reverb swell for example. Things like LED colour can be set for each part, with 32 parts it can be handy to identify between them, there is also a animation function for each part but I don’t like that kind of thing but it can be set to off thankfully.

The screen is pretty good, better than most in fact, it has a bit of an OP-1 type vibe in places, you can see some of the screens in this instagram I made, as well as the sampling, BTW these are not internal sounds they are TT-303 and TT-606 loops sampled into the ARQ https://instagram.com/p/BeIZYmDjhi6/

Ok thats it for now, more later.


Thanks for the write up! It confirms what I suspected about the thing.

I don’t know what Zoom were thinking with this thing- they usually make such high quality stuff. Is there a trendy element of Zooms branding that I haven’t noticed? Going from their field recorders and audio equipment to making the Arq?

It’s weird to me


They did that sampletrak thing some time ago, maybe they are getting back into that market. Although Arq96 is a strange thing it has some glimmers of brilliance, I’d like to see them continue on the sampler route but maybe go for a more conventional looking design and drop the ring completely.

Oh it has an editor too which looks fairly decent.


What the hell…


I don’t have hands on experience with this and in fact I don’t even have a thorough understanding of what it does. Just the fact that during the design phase nobody stood up and shouted “are you f’in serious?!” completely boggles my mind.


Hey guys, does anyone have one of these? I noticed they are pretty cheap, at least in the stores by me. It looks like they used to sell for a lot more but I guess enough people didn’t grab them.

For the price it seems like a really cool midi ableton controller, drum machine, looper and side friend to use with my moog. Or just a cool thing to jot musical ideas onto when I’m at the cottage and I don’t have anything else with me. When I first saw it, it looked gimicky. But the more I read about it, the cooler it seems. So I thought I’d ask if anything has one and what their thoughts are on it?

Is it worth getting? The price seems pretty good : )


Just looked it up and…what in the world is that thing? lol

It actually does look like it might be fun.
Sort of like a Simon Says beat machine lol.
I bet the onboard sounds wouldnt be so great for production. Unless you’re able to import your own. But think about the “wow factor” you’ll get showing up at a gig with that thing lol.

I’d get it if I found one super cheap but then again my dog would think it’s a new frisbee and destroy it on sight. lol

I will add tho it seems like it does a lot.
But that might not be a good thing. Like the saying goes, “jack of all trades, master of none”.


I thought the same thing lols It looks like something from star trek, it’s so futuristic and odd. My little brothers would freak out seeing it aha and I could picture it would be pretty psychedelic to wear on your head when you have your sequence going


My wife has been hassling me for years for one of those robot vacuum cleaners.
I say go for it.
Vacuuming sux :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: