Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

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Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby GuyaGuy » Fri Jun 07, 2013 4:09 am

:sigh: OK, let's do this.

I have the Tempest and I think it's a great machine. The sounds are great--both drums and poly sounds. But I think I might be falling out of love with it a bit because of the workflow/interface. In fact I think I've been avoiding it because of it.

1. What about the A4 makes it so user-friendly? (I've never had an Elektron device but I understand they do workflow like no man's business.)

2. Is it quite a bit more user-friendly than the Tempest? (I specifically dislike the load and save processes, think there's generally too much menu-diving, and find it odd the way some functions are soft knobs and some dedicated.)

3. Do you ever find the 4 voices limiting? (I've seen vids of drumtracks layered with a bass line and a lead or pad. So it seems like it may not be an issue, especially since you have 128 sounds.)

4. Do you find that the A4 excels more at poly sounds vs drums or vice versa--especially compared to the Tempest?

Comments from those who only have had the A4 are welcome too!
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Re: Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby natrixgli » Sun Jun 16, 2013 6:56 am

Tempest is better if you prefer to record sequences real time. Analog four is better if you like grid style sequencing and 'accidents'. Analog four does better mono (it can do legato), Tempest does pretty much everything else better. I got rid of the A4 and kept my tempest. I'd never sell it. Plus for me the A4 lacking individual outs made it seem just a bit unserious to me. The A4 reverb is fantastic, as is the sequencer. Though lacking any way to input velocity means creating dynamics is challenging. All in all it's much more limited but I can see certain people preferring it for certain things as compared to the Tempest.
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Re: Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby GuyaGuy » Sun Jun 16, 2013 11:54 pm

Thanks for the input. Yeah, the workflow on the Tempest isn't ideal for grid sequencing. Not awful but awkward enough that I wish it were better. I had forgotten that the A4 has no velocity input. And the thread in General Synthesizers reminded me that it also has no poly mode. That alone makes me rule out the A4. I guess I'll just make do with the minor things that irk me on the Tempest. I do really like it overall.
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Re: Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby natrixgli » Mon Jun 17, 2013 1:44 am

GuyaGuy wrote:I guess I'll just make do with the minor things that irk me on the Tempest. I do really like it overall.


That's pretty much the sentiment of most Tempest owners. It's not perfect, but it's damn good. And nothing else really comes close to as much functionality in one box.

I have a whole list of feature requests in, not limited to but including:

- Proper legato mode when locked to a voice
- Free LFO when locked to a voice
- Categories for the Osc 3/4 sample browser
- A way to exclude sounds from distortion when routed to stereo outs
- Sequencer level mute vs audio level
- Smooth recording of FX sliders or parameter knobs in general
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Re: Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby GuyaGuy » Mon Jun 17, 2013 3:09 am

DSI does seem open to feature requests and feedback, which is nice.
Unfortunately, they probably wouldn't be open to my suggestion of a larger display. ;)
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Re: Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby natrixgli » Mon Jun 17, 2013 3:14 am

GuyaGuy wrote:DSI does seem open to feature requests and feedback, which is nice.
Unfortunately, they probably wouldn't be open to my suggestion of a larger display. ;)


Yeah you probably won't get that until Tempest MKII.
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Re: Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby zoomtheline » Mon Jun 17, 2013 10:03 am

A4 is not a key players machine, it's a sequencers dream.
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Re: Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby shaft9000 » Mon Jun 17, 2013 7:47 pm

GuyaGuy wrote:I had forgotten that the A4 has no velocity input. And the thread in General Synthesizers reminded me that it also has no poly mode. That alone makes me rule out the A4.


so how does one get accents/emphasis? does one have a separate accent track or what?
EIDT: oh here it is the manual: "Open the ACCENT menu by pressing [FUNCTION] + [BANK B/F]." :geek: hmmmm. i don't love being herded into the netherdark of submenus and button-combos in order to adjust what is a traditionally top-level, basic feature.

it's a strange venture to get an unbiased opinion on this machine; one not loaded with hyperbole or plain ignorance. the MusicRadar review even says/HIGHLIGHTS things like : "The A4 can achieve pretty much anything you can conceive sonically"...uh. sure.
"play my guitar and while you're at it. sing for me, like Kate Bush on her 3rd glass, A4 "
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Re: Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby zoomtheline » Mon Jun 17, 2013 8:22 pm

It's not like inception with layers and layers going deeper so you don't know where you are. Everything is pretty much one layer underneath the face. You have to press a button to access any parameter on elektron products. The function button becomes your second brain and you'll keep a finger near it at all times and you'll zip through the functions like shit off a shovel in no time. It's by no means instant if you have no experience with other elektron products but it's a quick machine once you get to know it a little. As for accents you access the page by the shortcut you mentioned and select the trig and turn a knob to raise the accent level. Real quick and easy.
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Re: Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby BodhiFunk » Mon Aug 19, 2013 6:26 am

zoomtheline wrote:It's not like inception with layers and layers going deeper so you don't know where you are. Everything is pretty much one layer underneath the face. You have to press a button to access any parameter on elektron products. The function button becomes your second brain and you'll keep a finger near it at all times and you'll zip through the functions like shit off a shovel in no time. It's by no means instant if you have no experience with other elektron products but it's a quick machine once you get to know it a little. As for accents you access the page by the shortcut you mentioned and select the trig and turn a knob to raise the accent level. Real quick and easy.



Can't agree with this statement more. This is the beauty that is the Elektron interface. They are seemingly difficult machines full of endless menu diving and delayed actions hindering your creativity. But nothing could be further from the truth. As an owner of a Monomachine myself, I can attest to the true ease of applying parameter changes on the fly with these great instruments. Very intuitive and musically thought provoking.

I also own a Tempest, and have no idea what exactly bothers you about the save/load funtions of this machine. I simply just save my collections of Beats into Projects, and continually save under Projects unless I feel like modifying one of the Beats. I then just save the Beat under a modified title in the user section and continue to create music.

Also, I believe the Stereo Outputs are hard wired through the distortion circuit in the Tempest, making seperating voices from being processed by it impossible without serious circuit modifications. Same with the compressor circuit, it is also a hardware circuit compressor at the Stereo Output end.

Another note, I don't think that the Analog 4 and Tempest are even remotely close to the same type of instruments as far as possible applications go. So it is unfair to compare these two very great, but very different units.
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Re: Elektron Analog Four vs DSI Tempest

Postby Kenneth » Sun Aug 25, 2013 6:59 pm

Korg Electribe.

Sorry, I'm not trying to be a dick. I have never played with a tempest, but from what I have heard it sounds like a nice machine with an unfortunate UI. I have spent some time with an a4 however and I did not enjoy it. Very difficult interface to work around, and the red led display puts me in a bad mood. When it comes to groove box type stuff I really just want to be able to record stuff in real time and have as much as possible on the front panel, with little to no menu diving. I think Korg does it best, so I'm gonna be content with my ER1 until the Volca beats is available.
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