DigiTakt or Rytm for instrumental hip-hop, trip-hop, turntablism (Shadow, Krush, Koala etc)?

As title!

I’m seeing pros and cons for each. Exclude MIDI sequencing from the argument as I have other boxes for that and assume I mean a Rytm MkII. And yes of course there’s the Octatrack but ignore that for now.


  • + More sample manipulation
  • - Digital/clean


  • + Analog, warm/gritty esp. filters
  • - Less sample manipulation

I do use an old MPC as well for chopped loops etc so neither has to do full sampler duties. I’m looking at DT or AR for xox style drum programming and also what either can add to ‘mood’ or ‘ambience’. In that regard I wonder how the fx in each compare including drive and compression?


I’ve never used the Rytm but I’ve had a little go at making Krush style beats on the Digitakt (normally make techno so was the first time) and I thought it worked great. The filters sound really good as do the effects, and the drive and bitcrush can add a bit of dirt. Listening to Krush’s stuff I don’t hear many analog drums (certainly not “raw” without sampling) so I’d be tempted to lean towards the DT (but then again I’ve never been that impressed with the drum samples of the AR that I’ve heard so maybe that’s clouding my judgment)

Any sampler can achieve the sonic result you are looking for, it’s more about flow and sample selection.

MPC’s have nice pads for entering the vibe in realtime, the DK can achieve a lot with sample locks on each step per track, or split across multiple tracks to provide more opportunities for realtime drops/fills/atmos/fx etc.

If you are considering classic Shadow/Krush, then it’s all samples. So with the exception of producing (as opposed to sampling) sub kicks/toppy snares or dubby bass (boom bap), the analog engines in Rytm will go to waste.

The DK will provide the ambience and mood you are looking for, especially if you have the beats covered by MPC.

They both have some great FX onboard to mess up/distress sounds. The biggest consideration/deciding factor may be the DK stereo outs vs the Rytm multiple outputs.

Thanks. Yes good point gentleman, there’s lots of warmth and grit in the Krush (etc) sound overall but the drums are generally lifted from vinyl so are acoustic kit timbres ultimately

The other consideration is processing short instrumental samples, Rhodes stabs etc, so maybe I should got stuck into a comparison of the the filters and fx more

Yeah, tricky… both machines lend themselves to dropping stabs/vibes along side percussion… comparison of each instruments individual merits will be helpful. Maybe try out in person to see how their use/flow suits you.

for sure, thanks

Fot your uses i think digitakt is fine, sounds nice, filters sound good, etc. I’ve had the ryrm twice and while i love the way it sounds i invariably started thinking that i have too much sitting in just a drum machine, which is the way i would use it when connected to other gear. I have used it alone and it dies that well.
The two major rytm pros for me are individual outputs (for fx, adding to that ambience you mention) and performance pads, (so awesome to stroke and bend your beat). But i don’t know if i wouldn’t prefer both digi boxes instead.

And you don’t want to hear it but the octatrack is THE elektron.

Thanks Stemsahde

No I agree, the Octatrack is the bomb! It’s just that I borrowed one for a week and … um … it fried my noodle. But I only had it a week.

Yeah. My first one did that to me too.

Get the digitakt. It is simple, but deep. And much cheaper and mobile. Sounds great. Once you know the elektron way, sequencer, cond trigs etc you can flip it or just keep it. You can do full songs on it. You can import drum and melodic loops, etc.

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I’m just getting my head around the Digitakt I got recently.
Whilst it’ll be used for techno/electronic music I also plan to get back into making instrumental hiphop/trip hop as that’s what first got me into music making in the first place.
There are a few neat Digitakt breakbeat videos on YouTube showing how you can chop up beats and import then use trig or LFO to randomise the beat to make an ever-changing beat. REALLY looking forward to trying this with some breaks!

If the Rytm has your eye because of the drum pads you might want to try them out first as they are definitely not “MPC feel” pads. A Digitakt paired with an Akai MPD218 might be better :slight_smile:

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I think a RYTM would be great(but the DT sounds great too). But best choice- RYTM. Those analog filters make some really toasty beats, sound great for the samples. And the scene macros just work for the flow of what you’ll want your beats to do.

But if you really want on board sampling and the price of a mk2 RYTM is excessively daunting, the Digitakt is super great! It really DOES sound as great as it does in the demos. Quite refreshing!

You’ll be pleased with any one you get, but the sounds of the Rytm will be great(note: the onboard synthesis- at least for kicks- might be too banging or heavy for your purposes. My advice would be to approach it primarily as a sample player and then fuse in the synthesis secondary or for bass lines)

I know you excluded it, but I say Octatrack fo that style, cause it has most sample manipulation options and Eq and Compressor. Eq is very helpful to be able to do collages with multiple samples of different origin, getting rid of frequencies that interfere and make them work together


I use the dj eq on octatrack all the time for this purpose, and if your good on the cross fader, which I’m not, you can do a lot of cool stuff.

Rytm is the superior beat making machine IMO

  • perf macros and scenes
  • swing trigs (no negative swing on the DT)
  • Automatable analog compressor and master distortion
  • Individual outs for every voice
  • Proper song and chainmode
  • Mk II rytm has pads

DT just cant compete… if we talking just making a drum track, that is…

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Haven’t excluded it! Just processing AR vs DT.

Wow these are all super useful features. Can’t believe the DT doesn’t have negative swing, something I use often on drum machines.

Yeah, digitone doesn’t have it either. Hoping and praying it might be added in the future, who knows?

Digitakt. Rytm is good as a supporting instrument. But hiphop is mostly sample manipulation which u can do easily with the Digitakt. If you want something ‘deeper’ I say get the Octatrack.

I have the Digitakt and been enjoying it for hiphop a lot.

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This thread might help you research


cool, good find