Akai MPC2000... fell into my lap at the right time

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tragedybysyntax
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Akai MPC2000... fell into my lap at the right time

Post by tragedybysyntax » Tue Aug 05, 2014 12:18 am

SO a friend of mine happened to tell me that he had an old mpc 2000 sitting in his basement and if I wanted to sell it and make some money on it, cool... if i i wanted to fix it up and use it... that's cool too. no sweat.

SO!!!! I rubbed it down with rubbing alcohol, found the os on akai's website and miraculously found a floppy to get it on via a burnt cd.. (pita man... but it's so worth it) found an old zip drive with a slew of discs to plug in via SCSI, and boom. It friggin works great.

Now it's the stripped down 2000... no ram.... no extra outputs... no efx..... but strangely enough, i've been wanting to start making trip hop meets modular for awhile and now i'm like well shit, I could do some damage here if i figured out this machine. I spent a few hours tonight with the mpc.... my diy modular... and a bent speak and math and WHEW BOY, once i get down how to quickly copy things around and make variations of that copy i'm set for what i would use an mpc for.

I was hell bent on buying an octatrack until someone broke into my house a few weeks ago and cleaned me the hell out... so with no insurance on anything (like an I D I OT ) needless to say i cant swing an octatrack at the moment. I've quickly fell in love with it already... it will never leave my house, hahaha. I'm just now looking around on different color pads and modifying it with the outs, efx, ram...

So no more ranting, all i meant to ask you guys was if anyone still uses the old 2k even though there is a myriad of options these days. I've used ableton... i've used NI stuff for triggering samples blah blah blah... this is something different when you can work on samples via hardware i think, and holy smokes do the converters sound good going straight into my mackies...

ALSO, any tricks or tips you can give me? Thanks guys... super excited about this new BEAST :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:
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jimmy_p
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Post by jimmy_p » Tue Aug 05, 2014 9:25 am

Nice score!

I picked up a 2000 as a freebie about 8 years ago from a guy who though it was broken. Turns out it just needed a new os disk!

I still use it now, though more as a midi controller instead of a keyboard. I have programs setup for different scales, so I select the scale to work in and the pads are defined to go up through the scale. Keep meaning to get back into sampling on it but I haven't yet. Just using it to record midi and jam out using the pads as mutes is great. There's a youtube channel of a guy doing wicked stuff with an mpc2000 like this.

If you want to upgrade it the parts are quite expensive. Its probably cheaper to buy one fully loaded and sell the one you have. The ram is maybe not too bad as I think its not specific to the mpc.

There are usb floppy emulators you can get quite cheap from China that should just pop in as a replacement floppy drive, then you can have os and samples on a usb stick much better than zips or floppys that will die on you eventually. This upgrade is definitely on my to do list

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Post by jimmy_p » Tue Aug 05, 2014 9:38 am

Nice score!

I picked up a 2000 as a freebie about 8 years ago from a guy who though it was broken. Turns out it just needed a new os disk!

I still use it now, though more as a midi controller instead of a keyboard. I have programs setup for different scales, so I select the scale to work in and the pads are defined to go up through the scale. Keep meaning to get back into sampling on it but I haven't yet. Just using it to record midi and jam out using the pads as mutes is great. There's a youtube channel of a guy doing wicked stuff with an mpc2000 like this.

If you want to upgrade it the parts are quite expensive. Its probably cheaper to buy one fully loaded and sell the one you have. The ram is maybe not too bad as I think its not specific to the mpc.

There are usb floppy emulators you can get quite cheap from China that should just pop in as a replacement floppy drive, then you can have os and samples on a usb stick much better than zips or floppys that will die on you eventually. This upgrade is definitely on my to do list

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Post by tragedybysyntax » Wed Aug 06, 2014 12:31 pm

I would love to find that video of using the pads for mutes!
I'm just getting used to having to save spuds manually to disk as I go and load them up every time I turn it on but that's a small complaint.

32mb ram is only like 20$... note variation slider isn't working so thus 15$...
individual out mod is what in doing next I think. when I go to SCSI to load or format... locks up the unit so today I'm looking at the SCSI fuse and trying different SCSI drives. I saw you can do a internal flash memory mod where basically it give the 2000 an internal hard drive... lots of options!!
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Post by jimmy_p » Wed Aug 06, 2014 3:52 pm

[video][/video]

This is the one I was on about. I thought he had more MPC videos but I may have been wrong.

He's not really using the mute function on the pads, but using the MPC to record midi parts on the fly. I like the way his timing isn't great when playing the parts, but the mpc just brings it into the groove.

With the mute page all these parts could be turned on and off with the pads just like you would with a 4x4 matrix in Ableton

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Post by tragedybysyntax » Wed Aug 06, 2014 6:42 pm

holy crap.. i havent found the mute page yet!!!
However tonight I just learned how to reverse samples and I also got my external zip drive rocking as well! ALSO, today i took the entire thing apart and soaked all of the button covers in 409/HOT water and they turned out great. Was really...really gross. Progress none the less... progress.

The problem i now have is... i want the individual outs RIGHT AWAY so i can start sending outs to effects... need a mixer then also. :twisted:
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Post by tragedybysyntax » Wed Aug 06, 2014 6:48 pm

oh my... that video was sick. Thank you for sharing!!!!
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Post by jimmy_p » Thu Aug 07, 2014 10:33 am

For the mutes:

On the main screen next to the track name it says On: (yes or no)

Highlight this and press "open window"

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Post by 1nput0utput » Sat Aug 09, 2014 1:54 pm

I picked up an MPC 2000 for short money a couple of years ago, but sadly I haven't done anything with it. The LCD in mine is flaky and I think there's a problem with the disk drive. You may have inspired me to pick up this project again…

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Post by tragedybysyntax » Sun Aug 10, 2014 10:42 pm

OH man this past week i've spent A LOT of time with it and i'm getting pretty good with it actually. Man.. it's seriously all i want to use for making beats. Eventually i'll get an octatrack to mangle samples and then dump back into the mpc. I spent a few hours the other night just sampling the crap out of my bent drum machines and some modular synth stuff and i'm on the way to making some wicked programs full of samples.

Obvious questions are... is it IMPOSSIBLE to orgranize these samples into folders and such even if I were to do a usb thumb stick or something? as in... get them onto my mac.. rename... etc?

I'm a little confused on the track mutes because like an idiot i've been recording my finger trigger performances as one track so every "sequence" i make is assigned to ONE mute pad... lol
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Post by jimmy_p » Mon Aug 11, 2014 3:17 am

Yeah separate your tracks to one part each if you want to mute! If you want to keep your work I think you can copy the tracks then delete the different parts from each track. While recording hold erase and the pad sound you want to delete.

I dont think the 2000 supports folders, but you can kind of get around this if you have a zip drive by giving it multiple partitions then treat each partition as a folder. I had mine setup like this until the disk and drive died!

Getting the usb drive from China and you can do the same with that, you just have to remember that partition 1 is kicks, 2 is snares etc.

Also realised yesterday you can trigger the sounds sampled in the mpc via external midi, so had a good session yesterday triggering samples from my modular :sb:

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Post by SubliminalSandwich » Mon Aug 11, 2014 7:04 am

Im getting exited by my 5000 again after taking it for granted for far too long.. part of me wants a 2000 aswell for the sheer simplicity of it..

As for recording a whole take to one track, I'm not sure the 2000 has the feature, but I copy particular pads to seperate tracks after a live take, then I can edit, mute them seperately while having the option to do a complete performance in one go..

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Post by tragedybysyntax » Mon Aug 11, 2014 11:05 am

Ahhh... yeah i was trying to figure out the erase key with the pad that i was laying down a part with. I had the sequencer stopped tho and when you hit erase, a window pops up, you hit the button you want to delete data from, then it asks you from when to when you want to delete.

SO you're saying while the seq is running i can just hold down erase and that pad and it will delete?!
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Post by jimmy_p » Mon Aug 11, 2014 12:54 pm

Yeah thats right, the sequencer is running and in record mode

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Post by JamieH » Tue Aug 12, 2014 1:48 am

I used to love my mpc 2k, at 1 point i used it solely to make music, gigged with it and everything, great bit of kit.

I use Maschine Studio now but mpc 2k will always have a place in my heart.

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Post by booksy » Tue Aug 12, 2014 11:04 am

I used a 2000 and eventually upgraded to the 2000xl. I have a lot of love for them. Maybe they don't have the vintage cache of the Roger Linn-era MPCs, but I like the way drums sound coming out of them. My primary issue with the original 2000 was having to load the os every time from a floppy.

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Post by moremagic » Tue Aug 12, 2014 1:12 pm

i have been trying to revive a 2000xl that i got in a screwed up trade
managed to damage the sensor while replacing all the bad switches on the control board. looking forward to having replaced it, but not looking forward to replacing it!
anybody have any tips on the procedure? ive caught the vids on youtube and all, just trying to cast as wide a net as i can so hopefully i can make music instead of making mistakes

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Post by tragedybysyntax » Thu Aug 14, 2014 1:55 pm

booksy, that's not a big deal about loading the os from floppy man. I just leave it in, I use the SCSI port on the back to load up a 100mb zip drive for samples anyway!

Curious guys.... so I'm going over for a hip hop jam to the guys house that gave me the 2k. He has a 2kxl, I was wondering if there was a way to sync the 2 together to where we can both independently sample into our machines and edit... assign samples to our own pads but have the master sync the same for the sequencer? Thanks guys!
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Post by SubliminalSandwich » Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:55 pm

If you can assign one mpc as master and send midi click and transport control to the other which is set as slave. then each performer can switch sequences, etc independently buttheir will be one overall tempo.. sounds a blast.. have fun..

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Post by tragedybysyntax » Thu Aug 14, 2014 3:06 pm

Thanks sir! bringing my DIY copper paneled modular over there to blow his mine and to sample. Plan on sampling some of his hip hop kits he's made. I'm sure audio Out of an mpc, into another is just fine ;)
I'll let you guys know how it goes tonight!
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Post by 1nput0utput » Sun Aug 24, 2014 5:52 pm

1nput0utput wrote:I picked up an MPC 2000 for short money a couple of years ago, but sadly I haven't done anything with it. The LCD in mine is flaky and I think there's a problem with the disk drive. You may have inspired me to pick up this project again…
I was thinking that the disk drive in my MPC 2000 was broken and I was about to go to the computer store to buy a new one. But after doing some research online, I learned that the MPC checks an OEM identifier field in the filesystem on the disk to determine whether it's a valid boot disk. Apparently Windows clobbers this field unexpectedly. You might have a working boot disk, but as soon as you mount it on a Windows machine, Windows overwrites the OEM field and the MPC will not be able to boot from it after that. That explains why the few boot disks I had became unusable. I thought the system files might have been corrupted, so I put the disks in a Windows machine to copy the MPC system files back onto them.

Anyway, for the benefit of those searching for this in the future, I found that Mac OS X has a program called newfs_msdos that can make FAT filesystems in various flavors and it has an option to set the OEM field. Note that if you make a new filesystem on the wrong device, such as your computer's boot drive, very bad things will happen, namely complete loss of the data on the device. Only use this method if you fully understand what you're doing.

You have to first determine which device under /dev is the floppy drive, and then make the new filesystem on the disk like so:
newfs_msdos -F 12 -O "MPC2000 " -f 1440 /dev/diskN
The FAT type option (-F) makes a FAT12 filesystem. The OEM option (-O) sets the OEM field to MPC2000. (The string in this field must be eight characters long, so note the space at the end.) Change the format option (-f) depending on the size of this disk in kB. 1440 will be the most common. N is the number of the appropriate device label under /dev, of course.

Since Mac OS X has newfs_msdos, I would expect that other BSD variants probably have it too. You might be able to do similar things with parted or other programs on Linux, but I haven't tried.

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