Anyone still using a hardware sampler?

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ignatius
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Anyone still using a hardware sampler?

Post by ignatius » Wed Aug 19, 2009 6:27 pm

i haven't used one since i sold (at a huge loss) my yamaha A4000 like 7-8 years ago.

i've been using kontakt some and in ableton i use 'sampler' a bit as well as EXS in logic. somethings about them are great. using samples as oscillators, ease of use and editing quickness, kontakt's audio mangling is great. i have NI komplete and get some use out of reaktor for some specialized sampling applications or weird DSP type stuff that gets rendered then dumped into kontakt or just used as an audio file.

some of the nicest hardware samplers ever are showing up at a fraction of their cost. i wonder if anyone has been tempted to jump on a great deal for the sampler you wish you had back when..

i know some people swear by the hardware samplers they have and kept them and use them as if software samplers never existed. i've read a lot about how people just think the software samplers are crap.

i used and emu for a while in a job i had and the converters were amazing and the DSP functions at the time were unique and may still be?

so, yeah.. open for discussion.. you using a hardware sampler? if so why?

PS: i think we are aware of the inherent benefits of softsamplers and i don't want this to be about software vs hardware. we've all been down that route.

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Re: Anyone still using a hardware sampler?

Post by consumed » Wed Aug 19, 2009 6:36 pm

ignatius wrote:some of the nicest hardware samplers ever are showing up at a fraction of their cost. i wonder if anyone has been tempted to jump on a great deal for the sampler you wish you had back when..

i know some people swear by the hardware samplers they have and kept them and use them as if software samplers never existed.
i exist in this group. i did jump on a great deal--i picked up a fully maxed out akai s6000 although i nearly know the emu e6400 like the back of my hand and still have it/use it. i still have and will always keep my k2000rs.

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Post by ignatius » Wed Aug 19, 2009 6:46 pm

i've seen some E4xt ultras around for stupid prices w/all the extras. would be fun to get into a deep sampler like that.

my main thought is wondering if i'd be more or less productive?

when i had my yamaha A4000 i was totally broke for a while and sold all but one synth and i got a lot done because i was focused, the sampler did a hell of a lot and my set up was simplified.

the only samplers i've spent a lot of time w/are the yamaha and before that an akai S2000 (which eventually died and was a pretty flat sounding sampler).

I have gone through some pretty intense editing periods w/kontakt and messing w/scripts etc and that's a ton of fun but w/the hardware it seemed to have an end. it was gear towards something more than just making a new patch.

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Post by felix » Wed Aug 19, 2009 7:27 pm

I use the SP-404 from time-to-time. I like it because it's very easy to setup certain pads to loop, hold (no need to keep pressing the bad) or the combination of those two and their inverse states. It also allows each sample to loop at different rates without any time-stretching or anything (if Ableton could actually do this, I might ditch the 404).

It also has some pretty descent effects, chief of which is the pitch shifter that actually has feedback as a parameter!! That one is awesome.

Bummer is that you only get one effect at a time. But, you can assign a specific effect to a specific pad - they just won't work simultaneously.

It's also battery powered (big plus!) and has a built-in mic (shitty, but fun).
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Post by ignatius » Wed Aug 19, 2009 8:16 pm

my MD UW MKI samples but it's hardly the same as full on rack sampler and it's so integrated w/the MD that it's quite the instrument.. still.. doesn't come near the kind of power of something like an E4XT or Kurzweil...

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Post by DGTom » Wed Aug 19, 2009 8:21 pm

I put an SD card drive in my MPC2KXL... game over! Mine is maxed out RAM/FX/Outs etc. Nowadays I mostly use the digi. outs for sound & the ind. outs go into the modular, fun!

I wouldn't trade the half meg memory & 'compressed 16bit' sound quality of my Roland S-50 for any soft sampler!

Hands down, the best soft sampler is the NNXT in Reason! ReWire that into Ableton & BAM! So ill.

Dunno about more productive w/ hardware samplers, once you have it set-up it'd be faster IMO just because you don't have 1.5 million options to try. Rock solid sounds in a dedicated UI can't be beat!

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Post by science » Wed Aug 19, 2009 9:19 pm

Well, I guess my Tyme Sefari counts. I also use the sampling features of my Machinedrum MKII UW, and once in a while fire up my Roland S-220.

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Post by Luka » Wed Aug 19, 2009 9:41 pm

im about to get a MDmk11UW if that counts
also grabbing a MMt8 for midi sampling

was thinking of getting a sp404 to records bleeps and bloops from my modular but that is pushed way down the line till it is full built and functional

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Post by widdly » Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:21 pm

I had never used one before but last week I picked up an Akai s3000. I'm using it to sample bleeps and bloops from my modular and then triggering it from my 909. It's nice getting away from the PC sometimes.

I'm hating the non-standard floppy drive though. :bang:

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Post by Adam-V » Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:31 pm

I used an e6400 (which I sold my soul to by when they first came out) before switching to Kontakt for the sake of convenience for live performance. No comparison really; I could never quite get the same sound out of Kontakt as I could out of the emu although Kontakt is somewhat simpler to use.

I now own 2 x e6400, 1 x e4XT and an ESI-32 although I don;t get much time to use them these days unfortunately.

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Post by Paraphonique » Wed Aug 19, 2009 11:01 pm

Hi ! :razz:

I'm currently using both a Korg Electribe ESX and a Roland SP404 for samples when working on my Pro-Tool LE rig. The reason why ? It's relatively easy and fun to produce sampled textures and sounds using their control surface. Also, because I'm building most of my beats on the Korg, knowing what "space" need to be filled by the samples can be assessed rather quickly. Adjustments can be made on the fly while the computer remains free for others task. Plus, the Korg has amazing filter, LFO and FX sections and all settings are accessible through dedicated knobs and switches. It's almost like using a hardware analog synth !

BTW, I'm also an ex-Yamaha A4000 user and I don't really regret selling it (even at a huge loss). I remember spending hours trying to integrate mine to the computer setup I had back then. Loading, saving, editing, trimming, data transferts took ages and tons of energy (and I'm not even mentionning the money I invested in memory, zip disks, SCSI drives...) It had amazing potential, dont get me wrong. But it certainly had some issues.

So - in the end - I'd say that not all hardware samplers are born equal... I think "performance-based" hardware samplers may still have a place in mordern setups. Rackmounted samplers ? I'm not so sure...

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Post by jarvis » Wed Aug 19, 2009 11:18 pm

I have an s612 that I traded a keyboard stand for. Unfortunately I still have to pick it up from my friend. After I finish moving into my new apartment I hope to give it some good use though. I think of it more as a sound-sculpting toy whose output would just be resampled into my MPC or just recorded for future pillaging.

The only sampler I've ever really wanted was the ASR10, but they still seem to go for good money and I really don't want to fuss with floppies/SCSI drives. My dream would be to see an Elektron-style sequencer interface w/ a modernized version of the ASR sampler (no floppies, save to drive or smart cards or whatever). That would be so absolutely amazing.

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Post by L0ren » Wed Aug 19, 2009 11:21 pm

I've got an Akai S-612 that sounds like shit wonderfully. Only paid $30 for it! I used to have an S-900 that I really enjoyed programming too. You can score pretty much any kind of hardware sampler for little more than a couple hundred dollars second hand. Even right now, there's an S-5000 for something like $300 on LA Craigslist. One of these days I'd like to pick up an original Emax or even a Mirage. If the price is right, why not?

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Post by valis » Thu Aug 20, 2009 1:05 am

jarvis wrote:I have an s612
L0ren wrote:I've got an Akai S-612
Just by chance, if you ever stumble across the schematics or the service manual for this could you PLEASE copy, scan, or forward a copy of it to me?

I've been searching for it for so long and keep asking and asking. People have it but I'm yet to get a hold of it.. :bang:

I can even send you some cool scans I have..

Sorry, that was OT..

Anyway I also have a S612, a Casio SK1, Yamaha DS whatever, and a WTPA? waiting to get built. Eh, I use them occasionally because they're each fun in their own ways. I have some plans for that S612 though if I can ever look at the schematic.. :banana:

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Post by richard » Fri Aug 21, 2009 11:55 am

yup, akai 5000, 6000, Z4 and z8 are going for no money these days

a lot of producers got a lot of their sound from hardware samplers, software samplers give no punch and vibe, some of my favorite electronic musicians got ruined when they gave up the hardware samplers - everyone sounds the same!


R

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Post by krisp14u » Fri Aug 21, 2009 12:10 pm

EMAX II she is in storage at the moment but it is good enough for my needs
It has a punchy sound not found on software samplers

it could do with a mem upgrade tho, 2MB don't last long
Cheers :guinness:

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Post by insomniyack » Fri Aug 21, 2009 12:29 pm

I use only an MPC2000 XL MCD and no computer at all.

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Post by the bad producer » Fri Aug 21, 2009 12:42 pm

insomniyack wrote:I use only an MPC2000 XL MCD and no computer at all.
Me too, never got into computers for sound (no, I'm not an old luddite, maybe just :russian: ) Just got an MPC, and several S3000/3200's...

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Post by BananaPlug » Fri Aug 21, 2009 12:42 pm

I have an Akai S5000 which I use as a digital recorder. It has very clean processing and records WAV files straight to a hard drive (not limited to RAM size).

The only annoying part is the noisy SCSI I hard drive and having to power cycle everything to move it from sampler to PC. I've heard of people sticking an SD card drive where the floppy drive goes but it's not a simple drop in replacement.

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Post by Soy Sos » Fri Aug 21, 2009 1:26 pm

I've been through a TON of hardware samplers.
My latest is the MPC-1000. Small, fast loading, good sound, USB and
fast storage on compact flash, nice pads, solid feel and JJOS.
I just set it up next to my turntable in the living room and made hella
Hip Hop beats straight off vinyl. Pure fun!

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Post by ignatius » Fri Aug 21, 2009 2:38 pm

i tried to get with the MPC1000 JJOS combination but it never jelled. i got in the zone w/it a few times but ultimately my brain couldn't be happy with it. i don't know why.

i notice too that it takes a bit to get your software samplers to sound not like software samplers. also, i think a lot of people do have a similar tone even if they make completely different music. it's either because they totally crush their music when it comes to mastering or they just can't make the in all in the box production process sound like it has life in it. some people can though. some people have no problem getting it done in the computer and making it sound great.. usually they are using some other process or apps or software they designed in conjunction w/all the other stuff though.

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Post by worker8 » Fri Aug 21, 2009 2:49 pm

SP-404 is credited as great "disco edit" tool (Jamal Moss / Historical Archive).

Perhaps easier and more funny to use than a reel 2 reel (or a computer).
Last edited by worker8 on Fri Aug 21, 2009 3:02 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Post by worker8 » Fri Aug 21, 2009 3:01 pm

I still own a 15 years old ASR-10. Mostly to play drum sounds thru distortion-reverb. It's been a long time since I last played with a joystick to move loop points in a sample (I don't need a Sefari. I don't need a Sef...).

I like the sample midi dump too (Recycle Mac OS 9). Old fashioned.

A wonderful instrument I never used to it's full potential.

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Post by Soy Sos » Fri Aug 21, 2009 5:41 pm

Oh yeah, speaking of beats here's a streaming beat compilation
of those tracks. Please excuse the corny voiceover it's for promo
purposes and I'm giving out a bunch to local MC's. I know, they're
unauthorized sample heavy. I knocked them out in 10 to 15 minutes each.
For the kids, you know, the kids love 'em!

http://share.ovi.com/media/SoySos.public/SoySos.10088

@worker8 - the ASR-10 was my workhorse for like 8 years.
I used the hell out of that thing! Also the Emax 2 and Ultra 6400.

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Post by revtor » Fri Aug 21, 2009 6:03 pm

Just picked up an SU700 for cheap. It is very much like Ableton Live in hardware. Nothing else like it, lots of fun.

I've got an ESI-32, maxed out (max ram, turbo card, internal Zip drive) and an A-4000..

ESI will be for sale soon

~Steve

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