Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pads??

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Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pads??

Postby XZit » Tue Aug 19, 2014 3:26 am

Hello.
I haven't partaken in this forum for quite some time now.
Thought I would rejoin due to rekindled interest in producing some music.

I'm currently working on old school sounding dubstep/chestplate records influenced, and underground/RZA influenced hip-hop beats.
I mostly make beats and some complete songs. A lot of my produced stuff is mainly loops.


In the past I owned a Akai MPC 1000 with jjos, it was ok, but in reality I didn't particularly like it, mainly because of the 1000s layout and feel. I sold that unit and was considering a mpc2500 with jjos because the 2500 has the flip up screen (and XL screen option) and a few more features. The 1000 felt kind of 'brick like' to me.
However recently I have been really falling in love with the MV 8800. Not just because RZA uses it extensively, but because I really am digging its interface, and its vga output feature etc.

I understand the 8800 has a little bit more of a learning curve vs. the mpc2500, however its sequencer and the way the MV works reminds me a lot of reason, and I started producing beats in reason but I prefer hardware if possible so I feel like I'm playing a instrument.
I want something standalone--I have looked into the akai renaissance, and I like it, however it needs to be connected to a computer--I really like the idea of the standalone unit, and its unfortunate (imo) that the renaissance is not a standalone, or can't be loaded with samples off the computer then used as standalone, but I'm not down playing it.

I know there are other options available as well like the Tempest, or the maschine series however these are out of my budget or I'm just not feeling them.
The MV is also considerably less expensive then the average price of mpcs online.


Any suggestions/advice/tips?
Gear: Ensoniq Fizmo, Korg EMX, Korg Kaoss Pad 3, Yamaha mixer, Numark TTX turntables and Vestax Mixer, Access Virus TI 61 key, Korg MicroKorg, Casio Rap Man ;)
Coming soon:
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby Cybercardinal » Tue Aug 19, 2014 10:14 am

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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby skunk3 » Tue Aug 19, 2014 4:56 pm

Your options are pretty slim. If you want a midi sequencer / sampler with pads, you basically have MPC's, ASR-X's, and Roland MV's, and I gotta say that in my honest opinion a MPC is by far the best option. If you want VGA out, just use a damn computer.

The MPC 1000 is ridiculously powerful. Yes, the lack of a tiltable screen sucks but for the price it is a powerhouse, especially with JJOS. You can also inexpensively slap a hard drive in there and store more samples and audio than you will likely ever use. I did upgrade to the 2500 from the 1000 but that is basically only because I *needed* the 4 midi outs, and also because I just prefer the larger size since I started out with a MPC 2000 XL.

I don't know what it is about the 1000 that you didn't like in terms of layout and feel, aside from perhaps the small size vs. a 2500 or something. Sometimes small can be good! If you like the MV, go for it, but personally I feel as though the MPC line is so intuitive that I wouldn't even bother. It's about as easy as beat-making gets, especially since these newer models have hard drives and CF storage, so there's no need for floppies or SCSI drives anymore.

If you didn't like the 1000, you're probably not going to like the 2500 since it is essentially the *exact same* unit, only larger and with a couple more features. Just go with what works best for you. Personally, I dunno why anyone would prefer a MV to a MPC, but that's just me. *shrug* :?

Edits:

The Ensoniq ASR-X and ASR-X PRO are options, but I wouldn't recommend them. They have a great sound quality to them and some surprisingly good effects, but they are plagued with weird sequencers and crappy encoders that are known to be skippy. Pass.

The Tempest is cool but has no sampling option, and it is not really designed to sequence and control a bunch of other midi gear. It's also really expensive. The Tempest is basically a synthesizer that can be played like a MPC, more or less.

If you want the best of the best, get the MPC 4000. You get the tightest and most accurate timing of all MPC's, basically every option you could ever want, the large size of a traditional MPC, and a super clean 24-bit sampling engine. It's the one to get if you have the cash.

Also, the E-Mu command stations are basically ROMplers, so once again, no sampling. They are also confusing as all hell to learn at first.
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby XZit » Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:13 pm

Thank you all for the advice so far.
I've done tons of research on the 8800 and the mpc series.
The mpc1000 I shouldn't say I "didn't like" I think it was mainly the screen issue, I would not be opposed to the mpc1000 if I had the XL screen tilt up option that you can purchase off of mpcstuff.

The mv8800 I think is under rated and a lot of bias is against it. Its quite obviously a powerful machine. I'm keeping an open mind on all ends.

The mpc4000 I would get if I had the $.


The mpc Renaissance I do like, but I dislike being tied to a computer to be able to make music. I prefer the intuitive hardware feel of having everything right there. I also like being mobile without having to take the labtop with me all the time.


My needs are relatively simple. I would like to be able to record live instruments (I play hand drums), vocals, my Virus TI (and then assign various recordings of it onto pads), and of course sample.
I'm trying to simplify my studio as much as possible. I would like to do all of it easily in one unit and even record it onto a final solution (ie cd) which is another reason the mv appeals to me.
Gear: Ensoniq Fizmo, Korg EMX, Korg Kaoss Pad 3, Yamaha mixer, Numark TTX turntables and Vestax Mixer, Access Virus TI 61 key, Korg MicroKorg, Casio Rap Man ;)
Coming soon:
Akai MPC500 or 1000, Firewire Mixer and Firewire interface
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby the synthman » Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:31 pm

It is possible to add a larger tilted screen to the mpc 1000. Don't have the web site details but it should show up on Google.
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby silikon » Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:55 pm

I enjoyed my MV8800 more than I liked my MPC4000. Heresy, yes; I know.

Have you researched the Elektron Analogue RYTM? It has analogue voices as well as sample playback; pads, pretty nice. However, you did mention price range, so I reckon this might be a bit expensive.

The MV8800 is a pretty nice piece of kit; I never used the VGA output, to be honest. I clicked with it much faster and easier than I did a stock MPC4000 (never tried JJOS). As long as you're okay with the limitations of the MV (older tech, finding replacement PATA 2.5" drives, slow USB implementation), it's a solid machine. That it's cheaper than the MPCs is but a bonus.
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby Hugo76 » Wed Aug 20, 2014 12:00 am

How about the Elektron Octatrack?
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby Stab Frenzy » Wed Aug 20, 2014 12:34 am

Hugo76 wrote:How about the Elektron Octatrack?

Doesn't have pads.

XZit: Just get the MV. It's not so expensive and if you decide you don't like it you can sell it for what you paid for it.
Last edited by Stab Frenzy on Wed Aug 20, 2014 12:37 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby XZit » Wed Aug 20, 2014 12:36 am

I like the Elektron RTYM but to steep on price for me right now.
Ideally I would like to pay $600-700 or under for something--which makes it even more difficult of a decision because the mpc1000, and the mv8800, and even some mpc2500 are all within this price range (2500 a little more expensive of course).
Gear: Ensoniq Fizmo, Korg EMX, Korg Kaoss Pad 3, Yamaha mixer, Numark TTX turntables and Vestax Mixer, Access Virus TI 61 key, Korg MicroKorg, Casio Rap Man ;)
Coming soon:
Akai MPC500 or 1000, Firewire Mixer and Firewire interface
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby blavatsky » Thu Aug 21, 2014 1:24 am

can't say much about the MPC, never used but read a lot online.

I use/love my MV8800, there is nothing else like it IMO..i think the learning curve is easy if you are familiar with MIDI production, you can get a beat up and going in minutes, plus slap a big harddrive in there, never worry about space/card readers/etc. Great effects too, if you make 'beats' I think you'll like the compression on there, slap it across several tracks for some pump/glue

Had but don't recommend: MP-7, RS7000
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby XZit » Thu Sep 04, 2014 10:42 am

thx for all the replies everyone. It really kind of boils down to how much $ I'll have after a sale of a synth that I have.

I like the mpc2500 however I would want to obtain it as cheap as possible so I could install the xlcd screen on it. This would be the only way I would be fully content with the 2500, I know many good artists are using it stock etc. but I really like the xlcd.
Other plus side of the mpc series is the customization and knowing there is always custom stuff I can buy for it (pads, ram, harddrive, etc. etc.)


As far as the mv 8800 the thing is a beat. I am pretty in love with this machine from just various technical/tutorial videos I've seen. I like the monitor capability and its flow seems pretty straight forward with a little bit of some video tutorial help. Its not as customizable-but you can get aftermarket pads, bigger harddrive/ram off ebay, wood sidings, and a customer vinyl decal faceplate so it still has some options.
Its also a little cheaper then the 2500 so I'm looking at that as well.
Gear: Ensoniq Fizmo, Korg EMX, Korg Kaoss Pad 3, Yamaha mixer, Numark TTX turntables and Vestax Mixer, Access Virus TI 61 key, Korg MicroKorg, Casio Rap Man ;)
Coming soon:
Akai MPC500 or 1000, Firewire Mixer and Firewire interface
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby corndogssg » Wed Sep 10, 2014 6:41 pm

if you can deal with having to hook up to a computer to use, the akai studio slimline is a really nice drum machine and sampler. it's pretty cheap and basically does everything that it's bigger more expensive brother the renaissance does. all around it's right up there with the ni mashine or arturia's spark and sparkle
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby ellaguru » Thu Sep 11, 2014 12:37 am

i vote for MVs or at least the mpc4000...outsider: the new korg electribe (??!?!)...outsiders2(but with no mpc style pads):mc909/rs7000...
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Re: Suggestions regarding good beat production/sampler w/ pa

Postby XZit » Thu Sep 11, 2014 9:23 am

I do like the akai studio slimline esspecially due to the fact it has the rens' pads. I could live with hooking it up to the computer, but ideally I would like a standalone device. I really like having a standalone hardware piece because it is like a unique individual instrument to me.

I have had an electribe before, I enjoyed it, but want something more advanced/next steps--i.e.mv or mpc device

The mpc 4000 does seem very nice, maybe a little out of my price range, but I'm always on the lookout. I like its interface and of course the large screen



Could someone that has owned the mv 8800 please tell me about its build quality? Pads? Knobs? Buttons? Overall?
I hear the thing is built like a tank?? lol
thx!
Gear: Ensoniq Fizmo, Korg EMX, Korg Kaoss Pad 3, Yamaha mixer, Numark TTX turntables and Vestax Mixer, Access Virus TI 61 key, Korg MicroKorg, Casio Rap Man ;)
Coming soon:
Akai MPC500 or 1000, Firewire Mixer and Firewire interface
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