Sample Looping

I’ve been getting into all sorts of wonderful sonic territories using the somewhat unique way of looping samples in my new AR. Having Chromatic Mode and being able to loop short parts of a sample (such as a CowBell or a Snare) allows you so actually create the musically pleasing sounds that my old MD (MK I, no UW or anything) couldn’t.

I’m amazed at how versatile this thing can sound with just two (!) parameters: they’re pretty good at zooming in on a particular segment in a longer vocal sample, they’re excellent to fighting up a single shot drum sample and they can be used to create digital oscillators and loop-able sustained sounds… I’ve worked with plenty of (hardware) samplers that required much finer controls and parameter settings to do all of that.

I do have a question though - how are starting and ending points calculated? Are they at fixed intervals based on the sample length (so a 5 second sample would be divided in 128 equal intervals of 5/128 of a second?) or is it more like an S-curve meaning the first few intervals and the very last are more narrow than those in the middle?

And - a related follow up - what actual sample length would work best to create the most smoothly running loop-able single cycle sample?

There’s 121 positions not 128, so 120 slices. This is by design to allow beat based samples to be neatly divided musically. It’s a linear division


My bad. So it’s 120. Thanks for your clarification!

About the beat looping… In that case wouldn’t 96 make a more useful division? (=more possible combinations to divide a loop in 32, 24, 16, 12, 8, 6, 4, 3, 2 parts)…

120 divides nicely by 3 4 5, anyway, i’m glad it’s closer to 127 than lower, but they could have easily gone for 240 !

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Did they go for 120 instead of 240 as it would fit within the 0-127 of MIDI standards?

even the rytm uses parameters with 8bit(256) range, the A4 uses 14bit resolution (same as pitch bend), so the MIDI standard is there to be utilised, Elektron seem to have the right balance on resolution and usability, but i wish some of the params had more resolution, like this one and also filter freq and instrument tuning, but hey, it is what it is for now

Dividing a loop in five equal parts thereby excluding the option to use 16 equal parts. makes very little sense (unless you’re Cenk of course).

The idea of running a loop through it and trying to sync it up is not high on my list, but it’s 120 for the reason discussed, here, from the horse’s mouth …
Post by Dalton of Elektron > Sample start/end has 120 steps?

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agreed the sample engine is stunning and almost perfect

its like a mpc 60/sp crossed with an ensoniq eps and emax/prophet 2000 and sugared up with a little MDUW.

additions i would love to see - loop point modulation, bi-directional looping, granular modes which somehow link in with the filter, transwave, resample mode - resamples say 10 seconds.

all somewhat achievable with various work around but i’d like see a bit more development

one trick I have found which mimics the instability and strangeness of old samplers goes a bit like this:

  1. in real time plock a number of samples by scrolling through the 128 sample pool, end/start changes, pitch down, sample reductions, analog filters
  2. play what you have in the seq - sounds ok? move onto next step
  3. hold retrigg press drum pad and exit into performance so that the retrigg is held
  4. next try different retrig options and/or if you want to get tricky set velocity and then set velocity mod for start and end, maybe filter
  5. turn down the bmp to 30 play around with retrigg speeds,
    start, end, add in delay
  6. hot swop in different samples from the sample select
  7. pretty much you can end up with evolving sound scapes and memory shreds
  8. try the bit reduction and overdrive ASRD to bring out longer drones

Sweet, was aware of other ‘exit’ hacks, but this is really nifty as you can continue to ‘play’ it(retrig menu) in a somewhat simpler manner than per trig, lots of fun esp when deploying RND/Hold Lfo :+1:

Yes…it’s like you said. Following their logic 96 slices seems to make much much more sense. Having the ability so divide a loop in 16 steps rather than 5 or 10 is like a no brainer…

thanks avant,
loads of interesting things one can do with regtrig held and the analog filtering adds some instability
enjoy !!

Maybe slightly off-topic, but…

Let’s say the Rytm is currently stopped. Can I now trigger samples by hitting the pads and keep them looping (without having to hold down any pads)? Or does hitting the pads trigger them only as one-shots?