machinedrum... mk1 or mk2

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machinedrum... mk1 or mk2

Post by chinard » Mon Jun 22, 2009 11:11 am

ok, i have been drooling over a machinedrum for years and it looks like i might actually be able to afford one.

I have a quick question for others out there in regards to the MK1 or MK2 version of the SPS-1UW.
I have seen a rather sharp price difference between the two even on the used market, and i was wondering what the differences are with the MK2 other than the slimmer profile.

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Post by modularplanner » Mon Jun 22, 2009 11:41 am

MkI vs MkII

Although i think the MkI now has 64 steps too, not sure.

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Post by NV » Mon Jun 22, 2009 11:58 am

The MkI went out of production once they started manufacturing the MkII, so any MkI Machinedrums will have 32 steps to it.

The difference in price on the used market is pretty dramatic right now, and I think it really just comes down to how you intend on using it. The differences between MkI and MkII are subtle save for the 64-step to 32-step sequencer. The UW MkII has a bit more RAM to it and more RAM and ROM slots, but I think 32 ROM slots is more than enough for most and I think many users rarely use more than one RAM machine at a time. Plus the RAM and ROM both share the same memory, so adding more slots and only an extra 0.5mb of RAM doesn't open the floor quite as much as it may seem. Again though, it comes down to how you plan on using it.

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Post by chinard » Mon Jun 22, 2009 12:35 pm

ok, the link you sent mentioned that the MK1 has 2 ram machines and the MK2 has 4 ram machines.

Whats that all about :despair:

Anyways, to clarify i am to a guy on craigslist who has a SPS-1UW MK1 for a decent price.
Just trying to figure out if i should grab this one for $1300 cash or if it is worth my while to grab one brand new from moog audio for $2000+ lots of tax.

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Post by suboptimal » Mon Jun 22, 2009 2:07 pm

The extra measures are worth the extra cost for the mk2 alone.

Each RAM machine can play back a sample, so you get two more with the mk2.

If you can afford it, I'd go mk2 without hesitation. I'm still stuck back in non-UW classic territory and occasionally am overwhelmed with jealousy.

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Post by GeneralBigBag » Mon Jun 22, 2009 3:41 pm

suboptimal wrote: Each RAM machine can play back a sample, so you get two more with the mk2.
The RAM record machine is set up to sample audio either from the external inputs or resampling from the master output of the MD. Each RAM machine can sample up to 2/4 (mk1/mk2) bars of audio, which can be replayed by as many RAM play machines as you like, each with different settings. Having 2 RAM machines means you can have two pieces of audio floating around, having 4 means you double the live sampling capacity.

If the money's not a big deal, I would say that this, plus the 4 bar pattern length makes it well worthwhile to get a Mk2.

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Post by sascha.victoria » Mon Jun 22, 2009 4:20 pm

II is always better then I.

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Post by felix » Tue Jun 23, 2009 11:06 pm

There are nice features to the mkII, but none are "necessary", IMO, although I did upgrade to the mkII from the mkI.

However, I would definitely say get the UW. I definitely would not want to be without the sample recording and mangling that's capable with the UW.
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Post by chinard » Wed Jun 24, 2009 11:03 am

fyi, went with the MK1.
i can upgrade to mk2 later and sell this model easily if i keep all the boxes and accessories.

..Now i just have to figure out how to use it, lol

it has been ages since i have bought anything digital.. feels kinda weird.

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Post by syzygywell » Mon Jul 20, 2009 10:54 am

either way I think it is such a cool piece of kit... post some stuff when you've had a chance to do something with it.

And yeah its cold and glitchy and digital in the best of ways sometimes you don't always want a round fat punch.

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Post by suboptimal » Mon Jul 20, 2009 12:46 pm

Congrats on your new MD. I have a pre-UW mk1 and love it.

Most important single piece of advice ever about the MD is that when you are building a new kit, be sure to lower the individual instruments' VOL parameter to about 50% as a starting point. The default settings on the MD are to max out VOL as well as channel level, which gobbles up the instrument's headroom. Turning down VOL to 50% allows for a lot more dynamic control, as well as easing off the digital aggression until you need it. I think a lot of people who don't like the MD sound after playing with it for a couple hours aren't aware of this issue.

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Post by comaduster » Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:01 pm

I recently had to sell a UW MKII. Missing it a ton now.

Great little box.

I'm amazed that nobody ever talks about balanced vs unbalanced connectors when comparing the MK1 and MK2 models. Seems like a big one to me. :omg:
I guess that underlying technical improvements can sometimes fall wayside of new features.
It's definitely not worth the price alone, but it rarely comes up.

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Post by pix » Fri Jul 31, 2009 3:08 pm

If cash is not a problem the mkII may be better because of the 64 steps...

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Post by stevenclements » Wed Aug 05, 2009 9:55 am

I've been jonesing for a Machine Drum as well... I've yet to make the jump... I just wonder how useful is the UW if you have samplers and such that can do pretty much what the UW will do. Granted the 12 bit crunch is nice and I do miss that from the Emax II, but I recently bought an Akai MPC2500 (swing baby) and am trying to justify to myself that the UW would not be necessary... (but I'm sure I'll still want it)

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Post by acidphakist » Wed Aug 05, 2009 1:34 pm

IMHO the 'UW' is not worth the extra cost. I have the mk2 MD-UW and LOVE it but hardly ever make use of the ROM or RAM machines. I suppose I'm not imaginative enough but the RAM machines only seem to be useful for interesting delay and flange EFX. As for a sampler, I am lazy and use Battery.

Keep in mind I don't play live and don't need a looper. And I also make dancefloor-oriented music so I don't like when things get wonky (think about triggering a 2 bar loop you just sampled but offset and with a different playback speed. Cool, but can you say train wreck?)

I agree, however, that the extra 32 steps of sequencing are worth the price of admission to mk2.
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