Getting Experimental with OT

I’ve been wanting to start this post for a while now, as I would like more ideas for utilizing the OT in a more experimental approach. Unfortunately (or fortunately in this global situation) I am up on a mountain off grid and only have slow satellite data, so all those cool Youtube tutorials are out of reach.
So, I was wondering your favorite way of using the OT to get crazy results. Right now all I have hooked up is my MnM and the OT. MnM going thru a thru machine in channel 5 on part one and part two plays back the recorder on channel 5. Think tonight I’ll setup track 6-8 as neighbors and just go wild. I could use some creative advice from you all.
If I come up with anything interesting I will share. Funny, I’ve had the OT for two and a half years and I’ve yet to get crazy with it. I’ve just been working on trying to use it as a groove box, and building song structures.
Ok… Thanx Keep safe kids.


The filter can get damn crazy!

I like to use the lfo’s on filter parameters when I want to get crazy.

One lfo on env depth, one on env attack and one on env decay. Turn up the resonance and turn down the width and then play around with the base.

Add filter drive for extra grit.


Just a few thoughts:

Use comb filters on kicks. Sounds like thick modular sometimes.

Go wild with delay feedback and conditional trigs on a kick with LFOs on the filter.

Those two things alone should get you some nice results.

Change comb filter pitch with crossfader.

If you don’t mind high bpm I recommend a trick that seems to work on all Elektron boxes. Filter collisions.

Live record a slow filter sweep going back and forth on a value. Then once it is recorded move that same value and the sound should cut out as you move the encoder.

I am sure others will provide their tips and tricks but have fun!


Lo-fi + Compression on your cross fader = sweetness


+1 for comb filter pitch on the crossfader! Here’s how I’ve gotten some pretty magical results with it a couple of times:

  • put the comb filter on efx slot 1 for a monophonic synth line, like an arpeggio
  • put a long-tailed dark reverb on efx slot 2
  • for the comb filter, set the pitch to the crossfader so that scenes A and B are exactly one octave apart from each other
  • the comb filter’s basic pitch should be something that goes musically well with your synth line / arpeggio
  • give the comb filter quite a lot of feedback
  • now you can play a second voice for your arp with the crossfader, and all of it goes into the dark reverb which glues the whole thing together

Beat Repeat
I like to use a delay on a kick, snare, or high hat track (single sample, not a full loop), and use a delay effect with TAPE off, and Feedback, Volume/Send, and Time all the way down. Then Module and/or plock all three parameters to get beat repeat effects.

I like adding conditional trig-less trigs, along with conditional trigs with repeats themselves, and plocked volume, to get pretty fun evolving patterns.

Keeping the tracks separately helps keep it sounding like a repeat effect and not just a delay effect.

FX Bus
I like to use my OT in studio mode, then use the CUE as an effects bus, either internally or externally. In this way you can sort of set the “wet/dry” ratio by changing the Main vs Cue volume.

Usually I’ll route these to at least one Flex track with a record buffer, drop a few record trigs, a few trigs, and add plocks and LFOs to to RATE, LEN, PITCH, RTRG and RTIM to add texture underneath your original sequence.

I also like to go external to a MD (usually to a RAM track doing something similar to the OT) or A4 (love that reverb), but you can just as easily run it out to a pedal and back into the OT with a THRU machine or basic FLEX machine.

OT Karplus Strong Synth
An oldie but a goodie, use a short noise sample (you can quickly make one yourself with internal resampling) on a Comb Filter with full MIX, pretty high FB, and mid-high LP, and you’ve got yourself a pretty wide range mono synth you can plock pitches and effects on.

Changing the FB and LP change the character, so those are fun to set LFOs on. Throw some reverb on and you’re good to go. I’ve done this with three different tracks to get chords too. I guess if you have a few particular notes/chords in mind, you can set them up and resample to save some tracks.

Granular Effect
Last one I can remember is setting up a Flex track with a longer sample, at least one with plenty of different textures and timbre changes, so an evolving pad or something like that.

Then set your LEN on and set to 0, RATE set to time (or not pitch, I forget what it’s called now…), LOOP to ON or PINGPONG. Lower the HOLD and Release so you get a useable pluck or pad with a longish decay.

Set an LFO to STRT, probably a Free Random with just a little depth, just to move the start time around a little bit but not too jumpy.

Then set Scene B to increase the STRT time to the highest value, and add some Dark Reverb or a Neighbor track so you can add plenty of effects (you’ll probably want to).

You should now have a sort of granular-synth type sound that you can scroll through with the crossfader.

I’ll just add that these are absolutely not my original ideas or anything, I just picked these up from various YouTube videos and playing around.


OT Science Lab - 1 year study - who’s up for it? [LAUNCHED]

OT Science Lab - 1 year study - 11 - More Cowbell :cb:

3 - Chain Gang - One year Lab

My “very” old threads
:loopy: :elot: Comb Comp Contest!

Octatrack Metronome Only Warp Experiment Science Lab

Cymbals and metallic percussions synthesis lab

INABCD Jacks sampling challenge :loopy:

Octatrack realtime guitar processing challenge

My posts in interesting threads
Octatrack as Rainmaker

OT shimmer attempt gone way left and created something new

Feedback loop ideas thread

Reverb on FX1 slot hack

No energy for new ones for the moment, some ideas…


Wow thanks!!! Gonna try all these and check those links.


I sat on the sofa today and jammed with OT and OP-Z. I changed the track settings on 4 tracks to plays free ( func+pattern, then scroll down to the track you want to change and the active plays free)

Each track will now have serperate play heads and will only start its sequence when that track is triggered. So in my scenario I set up the OP-Z to trigger those tracks randomly and the results where pretty damn cool.


I’ve been messing about on my experimental project with the help of you guys.
Been using this one for the last couple days.

Lotsa fun. Sometime feeling like Autechre, sizzley, drilly, in and out hihats. Great fun. Unfortunately, I can’t get out of my habit of everything I make ending up a new broken tekno track … Still fun.
Also using more Comb filter (on different kick’s) and recording a lot of automation.
Next Granular effect! Maybe after that I’ll explore “Plays Free”… What kind of source material are you using in this scenario @MichaalHell ?

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I think I need to get more crazy with track recorders, and just live record, re-record manipulate. Thank god I have plenty of time, plenty of gas for the generator, and tomorrow the sun should come out, so we’'ll have solar power. Yay apocalypse!

Im using drum chains and each track has a drum beat on it and some modulation on the filters. The results are super glitchy, which is cool :sunglasses:

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D you have it so it’s quantized when you hit plays free on a track?

Someone already mentioned karplus strong using a delay with highfeedback and low delay time. I like mapping the delay time to the fader so you can play it, and get a lot more inbetween values you can’t get with the encoder. Turn your BPM up to 300 to get a bit more pitch control.

I love using the cue send and an input on a thru machine to create feedback loops. Experiement with both in the box and out of the box effects with a noise sample for some wild sounds.

I enjoy recording long sections of weird audio (just go to town tweaking the hell out of your MM for a while, or record the feedback as just described), and then making a track use that with randomised/modulating settings on the start time, retrig and retrig time to get random noise percussion.
Also with the weird audo, just setting up a 1-4 triggs on 16 bars and sweeping through the start time until you find nice, rhythmic sections.

Stuff like vocals, plucked instruments and other transient heavy stuff is really fun to set to timestretch and slow all the way down, you get that nice 90’s grainy timestretch effect.

You can use scenes to snapshot effects settings and switch between them quickly, and use parts to try out different effects combos.


Would love to hear this!

No, let it run free :slight_smile:

Or direct rather

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Ive taken This to mad scuentist land with help from the OP-Z.

If you have an OP-Z and a Octatrack id utge you to Try This.

Set 2 or more tracks to play free, sequence them from the Op-Z, let OP-Z be master Clock.

On the octatrack put a midi LFO on CC56 and CC57 those are the CC’s for tempo and swing settings on the OP-Z.

Now you will have a glitchy pattern with varying tempo and swing…

I will most definetly make a video of this


Here’s a video of the experiment.

I’m using the filter modulation technique which I mentioned earlier and also the play free sequencing I mentioned in above post.
An added bonus is that I’m using midi LFO from octatrack to modulate tempo and swing on the OP-Z


Damnit. I don’t have an OP-Z :flushed:. I just have my trusty MnM :slightly_smiling_face:. Thanx for the vid. I’ll try and watch it when the internet speed isn’t throttled. Very interested in “plays free”. I’ve always wondered the reason people use it. Never really understood its usefulness. I’ll be over here reading the manual for a while :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

Thank you sir. This may take me a minute to get into practice, but I am reading and re-reading this. Taking notes. Lovely ideas. Maybe I should try and make a project with everyone’s suggestions on it. See what happens

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