Is the A4 capable of matching a Rev 2 / peak's sonic capabilities

Asking because… it looks good as a desktop synth. I’m looking through vids and its always hard to judge. I was looking to get my full sized rev 2 & trade it for a desktop, which is hard. My search is then recommending me Peaks and A4’s and that’s how I ended up here.
Got a rytm and they of course look insanely sexy together, but I did the same adding a DN to my DT a year ago and that did not match unfortunately.

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Soundwise rev2 is total different territory. A4 is a lot of work to make it sound nice … mainly with layering all four voices or with different patches and/or unison. All the modulation stuff that is possible make it cool but they’re a lot of work as well (like finding nice parameters for the performance knob(s)).

A4 is a nerd hobby. Rev2 is a bread and butter synth. Just imho and ymmv…

Peak is okay … but not my cup of tea.


I can’t really see buying an A4 mostly as a synth. Don’t get me wrong, it is a very powerful synth in a lot of ways, and I think can make sounds none of my other stuff can make, but I think you buy it as a synth with an incredibly powerful sequencer for all four synth tracks, which can then be layered with a separate FX track. The Elektron sequencer, along with the synth, is the reason you get an A4 (and pay over $1,000 for it).

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Nope. I have a Peak and the Analog 4 and they are completely different sonically. You can get some great sounds out of the Analog 4 but it is all about that amazing sequencer. The Peak blows it away for sound design. I have a lot of synths from the Iridium to the Hydrasynth, XD to Opsix, Blofeld, Juno 60, Z1, Bass Station 2 and if I was only to keep 1 it would be the Peak. The FX on it are absolutely huge, best I’ve heard on any of the synths I own.


Thanks man! The rev 2 is lovely as well I like the amount of knobs, but it’s also a bit more expensive than the peak for some reason (second hand that is)
Thanks for the comment

Fair. Yeah. I’ve had the Digitone twice but I failed to optimally use it, and didn’t gel with the sound. I preferred the dx7 sound but I was aware that a lot of the strength was in the sequencer.

Now, more than a year further down the road I am seeing the A4 as being the Digitone to the rytm, but with a sound i like more.
I’ve got plenty of VSTs as well that can do pads, and leads etc. But I feel like the sequencer could make something not easily emulated in VSTs with the same tactility, and that’s important for me (giving space limit)

I hear ya. I’m mostly using patches and tweaking from there.
Can’t play keys tho so often sequencing, which is a plus for an a4

that’s true. Over the years I learned quite a few settings where the A4 sounds the way I like it, but you have to find your sweet spots, which can take a while. It can still happen that I dial in settings for hours and feel underwhelmed by the its sound, but you sure can make it sound very good… Sweetspots are plenty, but sour spots even more so


yeah that’s why I said …works best with layering …four underwhelming layer become one good :smiley: and then 30-80 minutes perf knob programming!


I’ve come to really appreciate the accuracy of the A4’s sound in contrast to my other analog synths, the whole thing of it being easier to fit in a mix is true imo… there’s also some sound design features it has that not many other analog synths have. I think if you give it time, you could find it as rewarding as any other synth but something like the peak might be much faster at delivering rewarding sounds

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I currently have both an A4 and a Rev2, and have a Peak in the past. The Rev2, as most people say, is the easiest to get great typical sounds from. The Peak has a great onboard effects, but I could never gel with its sound. Some people love it though. The A4 is a completely different beast from the other two, and I don’t think it’s comparable. It’s a sound designer’s dream with a p-lockable sequencer and 4 routable voices. It’s a synth you will never get tired of. Personally, I wouldn’t use it as my workhorse bread and butter synth. It is faster to get a good bass or lead sound on a Peak or Rev2. But for everything in between, happy accidents and brilliant discoveries, the A4 is unbeatable.


I hear ya. Comments above have been the reason that I never considered the A4. But your comment is the flip side. Bread and butter sounds are available in Ableton and most VSTs as well.

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exactly! I also forgot to mention the performance mode in the A4. For me it’s a game changer.


I think if you load let’s say 30 different sound you like from the +drive into the sound pool.
Then start from a fresh pattern and put on 16 step long only 5 trig, each one play a different sound from the sound pool, you will say to yourself :
“Ok, this is the shit I need”

The other synth are cool, and usefull, but if you feel ok with VST then… A4 is the shit !


Sounds cool for sure!!!
The way it pairs with my ar is persuading me a bit as well

I feel uneasy about my synth collection. It’s too big. I have some gems but I don’t use them enough. I lack all of talent, commitment and time (with occasional happy exceptions). I havn’t found my ideal workflow yet so I’m going to try avoiding hasty responses to these feelings. However, one of my recent ideas for a “solution” to this angst was to swap out two or three of my synths (including a Rev2) for an A4. I love my AR; I’m more productive with that than all my other instruments. I like to imagine an A4 would feel similar.

This is a very interesting thread for me. Thanks all.


I’m overly susceptible to opinions I read about hardware. This made me really hesitate to get an A4. And even once I got it I went through a phase where I regretted having bought it. I didn’t really like the presets and it is, in truth, a very complicated piece of hardware to learn. In my opinion, it’s even harder to learn than the Octatrack. That might be me, though. I have a hard time wrapping my head around how modular systems work. And the A4 is often compared to a modular system in the way that it functions. Don’t get me wrong, you can totally turn it on and do simple subtractive synthesis with it. Program some trigs and do normal Elektron $hit. But to plumb its depths takes effort, and with that effort comes great reward. To get hung up on the sound of the oscillators is insanely short-sighted.

I have no talent and my synth collection is too big as well. That’s why i’m participating in No-Gear-New-Year. Glad I have the A4 already. It’s never leaving.


All three of those seem like totally different synths to me—apples, oranges, tomatoes.

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This is a very common reply on these types of threads and for a good reason. However, being different synths does not make it impossible to compare them.

Might help to give a bit more explanation:

  • what I like about the rev2 is the sound, the ease everything is laid out and invited you to tweak and modulate.
  • what I like about my elektron gear is that it inspires. With the AR it is so hard to get a boring loop.

I often follow YouTube tutorials that lead to very static songs. Very basic stuff. I then try and transfer that knowledge to an elektron and it immediately becomes more alive.

I am wondering if the A4 had the AR effect on synths. I know the Digitone did not do that for me but it was also quite early into my synth journey so to speak.

When working hybrid the prophet is cool, but I’m always using VSTs as well for midi tracks: often recording audio bits of the prophet. The sounds i use can be replaced for sure, but a beautiful piece of tweakable hardware not so much.

I have the AR/A4 combo and I am very happy with it, but I had to work my way into the A4 (as I would have had with any fully featured synth, I guess). I believe that it makes most sense to consider each synth’s unique aspects rather than trying to see whether they can match each other. For the A4, next to the sequencer, it is its ‘4 monosynths in a box’ multitimbral nature that brings most to my music. The possibility of flexible 1-4 voice polyphony is a plus, but I mostly use the four voices as completely independent flavors.