Making large EBM bass out of a Digitakt

Hi all,

About a year ago I got a Digitakt, as my first piece of hardware. After going through the manual, and some fiddling around, I got the ins and out in a couple of hours, and what a machine. It is deceptively simple, and can achieve superb results, but as a single unit to make the entire track it was challenging. Around the same time of my purchase the first betas of Overbridge became available, and allowed to directly record the machine with no other equipments, tracking each of the 8 outputs while playing, so that I could make a track from a live performance

My technique was to set up some tracks post eq (so they can be affected by the reverb of the DT, especially for the clap, which is imho really dark and great), the different bass elements were independently recorded to be further post-processed, with Fabfilter Pro Q3 and Pro C. The bass sample is very simple, but with a lot of Overdrive and filtering, after some tweaking with the dynamics in Q3 it creates a huge soundscape while preserving the kick. The rest of the samples are standard, but they occupy different bands of the spectrum, and it made the mix easier overall. Another layer of low end would have made it muddy.

With the Digitakt I tend to abuse the overdrive, and the kicks are always fat and interfere with the bassline, so sidechain compression of adequate bandsis the key to allow some space in the mix, and is really easy to do in Q3. There is also some reverb on the bass, which is then controlled by with Q3 and some dynamics, just to make it a bit more present in the high end and make it bigger, but always mono.

In the track you can hear that I am playing live with the reverb for the tracks that are affected by it. One of my complaints with the DT is that reverb parameters cannot be P-locked. I use it extensively for sends, but playing the decay makes the stereo field come to life and help differenting elements in the high end…

Then, at the end of my mastering chain I used the Pro-L limiter to push it a bit further without crunching the dynamics. A little more then usual, but the track calls for it. Overall the processing chain was very simple focusing on giving space on each layer of the track, while making the low end huge and punchy by handling dynamics and gluing the track with light compression. I find that too complicated mix/mas chains ends up making the track worst and less direct.

Overall my experience with the DT was great, but using it as a single machine is quite limiting. I believe it shines better with a synth as a great small drum machine, but as a looper/synth I found it a tad underwhelming.

Hope that brings some insight as how I found a use for it in my productions (albeit a dated one), and also about the mixing process which is often the determining factor in modern techno/industrial/ebm productions.

Have a nice one guys


Digitakt is also a solid midi sequencer. You can pair nicely with an analogue synth. Your track sounds great btw and thanks for the detailed breakdown of your mix.

Nice vibe on this one! Real funky video too, tight production all round.

Thanks, I actually used the DT to sequence my soft synths on other tracks, but for this one I focused on a single machine throughout. My only complaint with it is that there is no easy way to punch in chords , I find the system to put extra note over the base one not as good as a chord bank.


Glad that you dig it , cheers

You could dedicate 3 tracks to produce cords but that’s eating precious tracks.

That’s because Elektron wants you to buy their Digitone!

Totally, nice production, love the video.

Wow lovely track

Post more of your tracks!