Best Song Mode: OT, A4 or Monomachine?

Hey guys. I really need a decent song mode for my DT and DN. Nothing too complicated, just looping patterns for a certain amount of time, then switching to the next one. I already have the AK, but I want to keep that in the studio and take smaller boxes for a more minimal live set up that also requires me to loop guitar tracks (hence needing song mode when my hands aren’t free). So, as I love synths, would the MnM be perfect for song mode and for processing external modules via its FX and for adding another synth to the collection, or would the OT be better for this? Or even getting the A4 and ditching the AK to keep the table top footprint to a minimum? Any advice welcome. What are the main differences in how song mode works on each machine? Cheers!

I dont have any experience with the MnM, but do own both an Octa and an A4 - personally far prefer the Octatrack for this. Use mine in Arranger mode loads and it’s great for it.

1 Like

Nice. Any particular advantages of OT Atranger over the A4 or is it just that the OT is your brain so makes more sense?

A used A4 would be the cheapest way to get song mode and the inputs are great for adding reverb and delay


Reminders, Halt, Jump, Loop points, Pattern offset / length / repeat, tempo per row, scenes changes…
AFAIK both A4/OT have transpose and mutes…

OT have midi tracks, plockable arp, midi lfos…


As said cheapest option is A4… But for a couple hundred more you can get an Octatrack and sample all your stuff and go to whole new places. MnM is the most expensive option by far with used ones going for 1200 sometimes 1500 usd.

But of course selling your AK and getting an A4 actually nets you some cash. Why don’t you play around with song mode on the AK (or you haven’t already) and see if it’s completely serviceable? Then decide how much you want an Octatrack and whatever else. AFAIK OT and A4 have very similar song modes? Maybe slight differences?

1 Like

I concur, don’t own MM but OT arranger is the bee’s knees!

1 Like

The scenes and mixing abilities of the OT appeals very much, and I like the fact that it’s still a supported machine (verses MnM). But as I have no real need for the depth of the OT (aside from some tricks on the cross fader) is it a bit overkill for my needs? The MnM I would definitely use a lot besides it’s song mode, so I’ll have to do some more research on its song mode. Time to dig out the manuals :blush:

Yes, the AK song mode is perfectly serviceable for my needs, so no problems there. Just wondering how the MnM song mode compares. Or if the extra tricks of the OT might inspires some new ideas in and of itself. Hmm :thinking:

I have MnM and OT and have used song mode on both. I remember there being a difference but I don’t remember exactly what and I know I used them to the exact same effect. I guess it depends what you’re looking to spend. Sounds to me like you wanna buy a Monomachine :stuck_out_tongue:

OT is incredible though. You may think now “I don’t need all this extra fancy pants mumbo jumbo mangling the Octa can do” but once you record your DN or AK into it just to try it out, and once you fiddle around, boy you’ll be cookin’ I tell you what.

But again if money is a concern you can make some cash off selling the AK and getting an A4.

Sounds to me like you want a new elektron, not a song mode :stuck_out_tongue:


This is pretty informative. I had no idea the limitations the A4 had. If the extras bells and whistles (mutes, pattern offset, jump etc.) sound like something you’d really want then get an Octa or a MnM. Tbh with you, I’ve kept my arranger/song mode use pretty limited. I didn’t need pattern offset or jump or anything like that.

1 Like

You might be right about me wanting a Monomachine. Gotta catch them all!


Personally I preferred the A4’s song mode to the OT’s. The OT obviously has more features but, even with a smaller screen, you can see more of the patterns on the A4 (only one pattern per line on the OT), which is more important to my workflow.

The big disadvantage of the A4 is that Tempo can’t be saved with the song. I got around this by naming my songs, e.g. “138 BPM”.

The Digitone has the perfect screen for a song mode (hint, hint Elektron).



1 Like

sezare56 has covered this in full! But yes, prinicipally the OT is my centre point when I’m not using a DAW, so it makes most sense for me. Generally speaking the OT feels a little less buggy than the A4 too.

1 Like

Yeah, I’m leaning towards the OT now. I used to have a mki years and years ago so it won’t be too hard to get to grips with it again. Thanks :pray:

MnM is like catching an extra rare legendary pokitron

1 Like