What else do you all like? Looking for a new sequencer for my modular setup. Definitely want hardware. Before I just get another Octatrack, what else do y’all like?
I’ve sold everything else
I don’t have any direct experience with OXI One but it is in my future, once my current move is completed, for use with modular and small synths (e.g. MM2).
I love my MPC One. It’s the backbone of my entire setup. People talk about them being convoluted, but if you primarily use it as a sequencer like I do, it only takes a few hours to get your head around most of the basic functionality - most of the complication is around mixing and sample manipulation.
the screen allows you to see almost whatever you want. I’m very visual so seeing a representation of my pattern is really helpful. The piano roll is amazing especially if you come from a DAW.
the pads are probably the best in the business
lots of dedicated buttons for things - once you get the muscle memory for navigating it can be pretty fluid.
super flexible. Can build a whole song in one pattern or do pattern based music with lots of loops and whatever length you want
the touch screen is sometimes inaccurate. This is only really a problem when trying to edit a pattern in the piano roll.
the pattern/ track/ program paradigm took me a little while to get my head around.
if you feel like you have to use every feature of a machine to get the value out of it then it will drive you crazy - you could theoretically build an entire album in these machines.
setting up a non 4/4 time signature is annoying.
Oxi One. Seriously so good.
The Squarp sequencers are very powerful with cv outs (in addition to midi of course).
amazingly different set of features = new & unexpectedly cool sequence goodness. Quirky but definitely inspiring.
I love my Mpc, I only wish I could more easily set/edit note length without having to use the touch screen…
Same. Even just having a “default note length” parameter would be fantastic.
Do i really need to say it, feels like Ive been evangelizing my preferred sequencer for some time now
Alllthough I’ve been having a lot of fun diving into Octatrack and Monomachine once again as of late.
OP-Z with oplab module seems to be well liked by some who crossover into modular. Probably can pick one up quite cheap nowadays.
For Modular I would actually go with the line module and a small midi to CV module like mmMidi from Alm… I’ve had a lot more mileage with modular and that combo then with OP-lab tbh.
Korg SQ64 is pretty nice, Elektron style trig conditions, fairly flexible too with various playback options.
I never tried a Toraiz Squid but it looks really good too, and seems highly regarded with some great features.
oxi one looks super cool.
Also love to try the squid, but it‘s a bit large for my space since maschine occupies that space.
Speaking of maschine, I love using it. Not the most innovative sequencer, but playing with the pads in scale mode is just super nice to come up with stuff. The pads are the nicest I ever tried. I love the unlimited pattern length. A real relieve after having used elektrons for so long. And there is a feature called Variation that let’s you autogenerate sequences with some given parameter ranges. Feels like an underrated feature, it really is a nice tool to get something going or for jamming. It can create some really nice melodies and basslines.
OPz was a great sequencer, the polyend tracker as well. Through, the polyend was not good for playing stuff in live
I am enjoying my Squarp Hapax as my main studio sequencer since it has multiple MIDI ports and CV control. Works great and easy to get started with. I am on the 3 year wait list for a Cirklon as my next sequencer.
Another vote for Oxi One
Definitely the best for CV sequencing, but also great over BT for portable use with an iPad as a sound module.
Torso T1 seems to get a lot of love as well. Depends on your needs though:
I’m having a lot of fun with an iPad and Blokas MIDIHub nowadays sequencing my desktop synths. iPad is running AudioBus 3, loaded with MIDI sequencing AUv3’s.
- Octachron (Drum sequencer with lots of Elektron-like features)
- Bram Bos Rozeta Sequencer Suite
- ShiftBud (Turing Machine with scale and root note)
- Physicles (Tombola-like sequencer)
To name a few… Rock solid sequencing, even when AudioBus is used as a MIDI slave, perfect sync.
Gassing over the Oxi One though!
I really like my Cirklon but I understand you are more likely to see a leprechaun riding a unicorn in Central Park than actually getting a new one. It’s really the best hardware sequencer around.
I’ve also owned Deluge, Hapax, Oxi One (w/Pipe), Torso T-1, every Elektron, and currently own a SQ-64, Polyend Play, and MPC One. For use with Eurorack I tend to like an in-rack sequencer these days, but it’s hard to beat the value of some of the external options.
All have pluses and minuses. I am pretty sure I’ve said these exact same things before in other threads, but here’s a hot take on each of these:
T-1: Super interesting but felt like a glorified arpeggiator to me. That was before the recent OS update that adds step editing. Even so, I bet there is there’s a lot to memorize owing to the lack of a screen. Helpful editor though.
Oxi One: This is a great sequencer that has super flexible routing and is quite powerful. I didn’t have it long and to be honest I struggle to think of what I didn’t like about it. I think the pattern management took a little getting used to, but I’d put it up there in terms of features and functionality. I sold it because I bought a Nerdseq.
SQ-64: I find some of the feature implementations annoying (i.e. not being able to use arp and substeps at the same time), and the buttons feel unsatisfying. But for the price you can hardly go wrong picking one up new for $130 and giving it a try. It’s well worth that price for sure.
Hapax: I loved the crap out of it, EXCEPT the inability to easily preview notes without jumping back and forth between the live / step modes. But the MIDI effects are really cool and it can do unique scales per track which is super nice. Build quality seemed iffy - the knobs were wonky (this was later fixed) and the LEDs fluctuated wildly in hue and brightness.
Deluge: As near perfect as I have found in a desktop sequencer, apart from the fact that scales are global, and note length defaults to 100% which causes legato in most cases. Aside from that it’s fast, easy, feature packed, and also happens to include a nice sampling engine and somewhat serviceable synth too. Being able to change pattern length PER NOTE is incredible, and the arranger is the best in the business.
MPC One: If you like pads, it’s great. Plays like an instrument, not a sequencer. Step sequencing is good, but you have to do it mostly via a touch screen which can be a turn off. A nice plus is you can use it with class compliant audio interfaces such as ES-8/9 or Befaco AC/DC which means you could record into it from your rack pretty easily, and/or use it’s FX.
Polyend Play is a really great MIDI sequencer with a few really handy tricks. For one, you can configure it to send a note and any locked values as you are adjusting the knobs. This can be really helpful to “preview” your modulation as you’re sequencing. Additionally, it uses their self-dubbed “pick and place” concept where voice allocation to tracks is not fixed, so you can set up modulation how you want it and then drop that “patch” anywhere on the sequencer you want, rinse, and repeat. Plus it adds up to 8 voices of sample playback which might be useful
I’d probably pick Deluge, Hapax, or Polyend Play. All of them pair really nicely with FH-2 plus expanders. Deluge and Hapax do have CV but it’s limited and not super convenient being on the back of the unit.
I never used OT for sequencing modular but I can see it being a good option. It’s the only Elektron with dedicated MIDI sequencing that I’m aware of having MIDI retrig, and being able to grab and mangle loops in real time is good fun with any setup.