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Hardware Setup Concepts?
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> General Gear  
Author Hardware Setup Concepts?
Hardware setup concepts? I've been into modular for almost 2 years now and as much as I love it, the workflow isn't proving very productive for me and the price is starting to get out of hand. So I'm thinking about going back to synth and sampler world and want to hear opinions on different workflows that have worked for you! I want something that is predominantly hardware based for composition, to then track into Ableton for final touches and mixing. But live I want to avoid having a laptop on stage as much as possible due to personal preference.

Things that I really love from modular that I would like in a setup:
Probability and randomness (random note skipping, etc)
Euclidean rhythms
Hella LFO's and modulation

The Elektron boxes seem to be favourites for a lot of modular and non modular musicians. The digitone and octatrack are calling to me but I've heard the elektron workflow can be polarizing to say the least. But my current idea would be a couple of elektron boxes and some external fx units. I have an MPC 1000 right now that I absolutely love but it's not the most open ended thing even with JJOS. So the flexibility of the octa is quite appealing. Anyway I'd love to hear your thoughts and what has worked for you!

Some examples of what I hope to achieve:
Flim - Aphex Twin
The Prayer - Gacha Bakradze
Terrazzo - Visbile Cloaks
Keep a modest modular in the studio to feed your samplers. Sequence/jam on the samplers and then refine the takes/tracks in the DAW.
Tascam Portastudio, or the Zoom equivalent. They both let you record, multitrack, overdub and all that stuff - and then export stems to whatever. I think that's where you should start.

Sequencer-wise, you could do worse than a Cirklon (of course!) but you could get a lot of what you want from others, such as a Squarp Pyramid. I have the Social Entropy Engine, and love it to bits. Most high-end hardware sequencers will do modulation-type stuff anyway, so that will help you get there.

For lots of automation and routing options, you could do a lot worse than a Waldorf Blofeld, or an Access Virus. The Blofeld isn't perfect, but its updates have greatly increased stability so that it's now a first class multifaceted synth. I've even used it live, polytimbrally.

You could also look very seriously at the Synthstrom Deluge.

Any combination of the above will be giggable, within reason.

Hope that helps.
For what you want to do I'd say... Octatrack MKII. Not the most intuitive machine, but the payoff is there if you're willing to put in the work. It's also very mature at this point and there's many tutorial videos and guides out there to ease the learning curve. LFO's, conditional trigs, P-Locking... Lots of stuff to manipulate samples. Plus 8 additional tracks to control external synths.
The octatrack is awesome. I didn't think the learning curve was that bad, but then again I started out on the Machinedrum. So I already knew the "way" before I got my OT. The biggest letdown for me on the OT right now is the lack of random pattern generation.

I also have a MPC Live. Which is also awesome. Especially now that it can generate random sequences which is something I'm really into now.

I've been using random generation on the Stillson Hammer MKII and sampling the results into the OT and I'm loving what I'm getting out of it. The combo of a good sampler and a well thought out modular is super powerful, and a great way to develop your own unique sound.

"Flim" covered by Modgeist.
Looks like Stillson Hammer mk2 was used for all the sequencing.

Gear List
Hexinverter BD9 & Snare
Noise Engineering Basimilus Iteritas
Mannequins Mangrove
Make Noise DPO
Intellijel DIxie 2+
XAOC Belgrad
Stillson Hammer MK2
keep the modular...if you sell you will just come back to it I absolutely promise. Get a solid hardware sequencer (cirklon, squarp, polyend, the electribes are cheaper and work as well) or sequence with ableton and get the Silent Way set up (this is what I do).
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