Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1

Machinedrum SPS-1, Drum Machine from Elektron in the Machinedrum series.

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FP User10/31/2008

FP User's review

Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
The design is almost flawless...I say almost because it does have one glitch...I have to constantly reload whatever kit i am using because some of the sounds change when I am using midi(slave editing my sequences from my rm1x) BUT..not only can you use the machinedrum as a slave,but you can also trigger individual patterns individually AT THE SAME TIME! using the MD internal sequencer and paremeter locks)..killer feature..

Price paid: 1000 USD


Hell yeah! super easy xox interface.i was up and running immediatly...also I have had this unit for over a year and i am still discovering sounds i didnt even know where there.


Warning! This is definitly a digital drum machine...some of the basic sounds are a little "tinny" and a little bit thin..however the tweekability and the variety of sounds you can make more than makes up for it.if you are still set on using an analog drum machine,you would have to buy a whole rack of effects to do what this thing does...Reverb,delay,distortion,compression...this thing does it all...and the EXT inputs are awesome..I am still going to buy a Tr-909,but I will definitly keep the machinedrum.


Rock solid machine.played several gigs with it.the only problem i had is because i live in the desert and its super dusty.the machine just locked up one day.it wouldnt even load the OS..so naturally i took it apart.all i did was blow a bunch of dust out of it with a can of compressed air and its worked fine since.I even uploaded the latest OS.

All around a super piece of gear.Used by Roonan,Autechre and 440hz.If you want glitchy sounds and you dont want to use a laptop then this is the way to go! the timing and resolution is superb. esp. if you are using the MD's internal sequencer and syncing up.

Originally posted on FutureProducers.com
Posted by: Unknown ( 6-, 2005)
FP User10/31/2008

FP User's review

Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
The Machinedrum is 16 multitimbral. There are 16 tracks that form a Pattern. Each track can use a single 'machine'. Configurations of these machines form a Kit. Kits are saved independently of Patterns. Patterns need not be saved as they are 'hot' in the sense that when changes are made, such as adding new steps or making a pattern lock, they are entered real-time. For this reason it is often a good idea to copy and paste your kits as your work on them. The pads are not velocity sensitive. Some people think this isn't good, but it is suitable to the functions of the Machinedrum. Creating volume and timbral changes is what Accent and the Parameter Locks are for. If you want live synthetic drums you can hook up a drum-pad to the Machinedrum. The OS can be updated through MIDI. Many new functional features have been incorporated into the Machinedrum since its inception. Even new machines have been added or improved. It has MIDI in/out/thru. Live performers will be happy to note that the Machinedrum will control external synths sending up to 3 individual notes per step. This is made possible by the MID machine - a great feature for programming basses, leads, and stabs that are in "groove" with the Machinedrum's precise MIDI timing and programmable Shuffles. Routing capabilities for the Machinedrum are flexible. A single sound could be bussed out of an individual output, back into an input, filtered and modulated, then sent out again out of another individual output. Such patching ability will allow you to set up your own insert FX send and return. The main stereo outputs can be configured to act as individual. The ability to define 8 Global settings will allow you to quickly load different sync, MIDI, and control maps for different environments. The kind programmers at Elektron knew you would be taking the Machinedrum on the road and to all your friends studios. It's packed with features and now with improvements. Elektron have listened to their fanatical fanbase and have incorporated requests (such as the ability to change a pattern on the fly with one hand so your other hand can still tweak parameters).

Price paid

$1100 USD


OS v1.12 I've owned the Machinedrum for a few months now. It is by far the most user-friendly piece of kit I have ever owned. All menus and knob controls are well integrated and are easy to access. The Machinedrum has two modes of operation - Classic and Extended. In Classic mode the sequencer merely triggers corresponding sounds from various kits. I use Extended, which allows for control changes and pattern locks to be implemented. The Sequencer is straight forward and can be used in Step mode, or Real-time record. The best thing is you can record and save on the fly. The Machinedrum is always "live"! Editing patches is simple and musical. Once you have constructed a general kit sound and have saved it (to one of the 64 kit banks) you can then proceed to use the Machinedrum's Pattern Lock feature to sculpt individual steps, radically changing the sounds in the process. The manual is good and is recommended to read to understand some of the finer points. For instance, when the Rec button is active and you use Function-Copy it will copy parameters from your active menu (LFO settings, machine, kit, etc) or will copy a single track (including the machine assigned to it and all the parameter locks) if there isn't an active menu. Other things are intuitively figured out on your own (for instance copying a single track in Classic mode, pasting it, then switching back to Extended will only copy the steps and not the machine or parameter locks). I have used complicated and powerful interfaces before (FS1R, ASR10) and simple ones (Roland-groove series). I appreciate a well designed OS and the Machinedrum is among the best. It will never get in the way of your music making, rather it will enhance it.

When I first recieved my Machinedrum, there was some "bleeding" on the main output (and headphone output). I returned the Machinedrum to Elektron and it was promptly fixed. It has only crashed once, and that seems to be a very rare occurence among Machinedrums indeed (I was trying to copy a Global setting, an unlikely procedure). As the OS is updated I'm positive that any remaining bugs will be ironed out. It is built very well. Brushed aluminum with a good weight to it. The Knobs are plastic, too bad they aren't metal. The Machinedrum could be used as a defensive weapon to ward off mesmorized rave kidz if the need arises.


Well this part I could go on forever about. Simply put I feel that this a very responsive percussion synthesizer. The sounds that the Machinedrum can make are constantly being discovered. In the right hands, the Machinedrum can create moving melodic and textured rhythms that are not typical of static samples. If Kraftwerk's ManMachine exists - this is it. Funky-robo beats at their finest! The synthesis consists of 4 primary synthesis types: TRX - analog emulation EFM - frequency modulation E12 - samples in memory (do not be fooled, these samples are fodder for sample start, retriggers, and LFO modulation) PI - Physically informed synthesis for acoustic sounds. Also: GND - provides SIN, pulse and noise waves MID - for external MIDI control. The Machinedrum has good EQ and filter FX. The Reverb effect isn't a Lexicon but is of decent quality and has charisma. Unfortunately, I find the distortion a bit weak though it remains effective on bassdrums and basslines. Some of the machines (such as the new 909-ish Bassdrum 2 from the TRX synth) has it's own distortion parameters that are more effective. The ADCs and DACs are absolutely pristine. They are "prosumer" grade, Crystal 24 bit 96kHz in an analogue subsystem. Low crosstalk Burr&Brown amplifiers. Most synths do not have this level of fidelity. There is no option for digital or S/PDIF out but isn't missed. The Machinedrum is essential for all electronic music genres and well suited for experimental music of any genre. Even with real-world percussion the Machinedrum is at home.


The Machinedrum is hooked up intravenously via a MIDI cord to my cerebral cortex. I would die if it were stolen! I wish it had sampling and even higher step resolution. Before I had the Machinedrum I fiddled with soft-samplers trying to get the right percussion sound. I love samplers but the Machinedrum has such a great interface and character that it begs you to play it. I have a modified camera case with room to pack a lunch that I store it in. I bought it instead of a laptop as I realized at the end of the day, sometimes I just want to hammer out a good groove and have fun. Highly recommended.

Originally posted on FutureProducers.com
Posted by: Unknown (January 1-, 2002)
FP User10/31/2008

FP User's review

Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
Big list of features. I just wish sample-option would be cheaper..


Fairly easy to use. At first there was quite much trying and testing things out, there is so much to edit.

It's build very well. I haven't find any falws yet.


Fairly impressive sounds. I couldn't imagine it as only source for drum sounds.


As I said, I couldn't think it as only source for drums. That's because of my style and taste. Still it has added great things to my music (you can check my songs from www.download.com/deadzone).

Originally posted on FutureProducers.com
Posted by: deadzone (January 0-, 2005)
MGR/Sr. M01/22/2004

MGR/Sr. M's review"Elektron Machinedrum"

Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
Paid $1150US
Store: novamusik.com
As a Techno producer looking for futuristic, high-end percussion sounds, the Machinedrum, loaded with effects, filters, LFOs, a kick ass equalizer and even a compressor (not to mention the best sequencer I've had so far), offered all I was looking for.

1- If you can dream it, you can make it: From cold,electro type percussion, to warm, deep tribal sounds and everything in between (including some filtered pads, LFO'd bass lines and more), the possibilities are endless. You can say anything you want about your 909s, 808s, JoMox, whatever, I've played with them all... NOTHING compares to a Machinedrum as a stand alone unit.
2- Sequencer heaven: When I made the concious desicion to make electronic music using machines, rather than a computer, I decided everything I bought would have a sequencer of some sort. Having said that, the sequencer in the Machinedrum is my favorite. 16 tracks for either internal sounds, external gear, and any combination in between thanks to ingenious "midi machines" that convert tracks into controllers that go beyond simple note imput sequencing to controlling effects, filtering BY NOTE (up to 64 different parameters per note, if not mistaken).
3- Better built than Angelina Jolie.

My one little qualm with the machine is the distortion. It's not as crunchy as I would like (in general the sound of the Machinedrum is rather clean, and you can get dirtier stuff, but it would be nice if the distortion were a lot more..."distorting".
Other than that, I'm really the wrong person if you're looking for somebody to diss' this baby.

Like a Volvo.

If you are a freak for techno, percussion and verything cool, you are a fan of the Machinedrum . If my machinedrum were lost, I would cry and buy 2 more.

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com

tcharps's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)" The ball!!!"

Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
6 separate audio track and 3 midi (in, out and thru) with 5 effects per track!
all this coupled with Derierre effects processors and is well mumuse!


when I first got it, I had to take 30 minutes to learn to use me!
Editing the sounds is so simple that even a kid of 5 years could use the fingers in the nose!
for the effects as there's nothing simpler: one click, two knobs to turn and forward! as mentioned above with effect processors it becomes a monster! (Separate outputs y 'it real)


to which sound is a choice and a willingness repulpable!
I used to techno! at first it's a drum machine and the end was a pure analog synth!
for tech is the TOP!


I use it for 3 years and I know I'm not part with it!
I mpc 2500 a couple and a North rack and forward!
on the other hand never out in the woods on a generator or so with a big inverter and having an electrical installation nickel in nickel. (Not cool off the microphones, and it supports not bug in all directions)
the price today OCCAZ I rather twice That a board has a guy who wants to have a good drum machine to make tek!
You do again this choice? YES without hesitation.

sptarton's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
There is no longer anything to add ...


BAR first that I had hands, therefore I've had a little trouble at first but it is very fast menus (previously I did not have that drum machine "simple" type korg Electribe). Skip this period one month all the way it is organized and above all seems simple LOGIC!
A quick glance at the manual (or everything is explained clearly) not refuse from time to time for some adjustments!


Even notice that others say it was crazy kicks, everything is triturated wish, wide range of sounds ... C IS FOR ALL THE LOOK AGAIN AND AGAIN!

Personally, I use to his drum kit (puissants!), I am not yet at the point on the sound effects (but that will come ...). Also I utis as master because it has an excellent internal clock .


positive point machine with which it takes some learning time (as with all me tell you) but once it is taken in hand is a treat! RESEARCH AND CREATIVITY, this should be your motto!

big negative: only 32 why not ???!! (Although it is possible to loop 2/3..patterns but it would have been more original with 64 steps)

If I was to do again resume without HESITATE, I just hope to have the chance to own a Monomachine side! AC must give!

ps: my setup: elektron (in master), roland sp 555, korg Electribe EA1 mkII

C13303's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
I'll just some details because the list is too long!

Everything is relatively top, here are two that I made a very intensive use, it's simple, it has become an extension of myself. THE bar studio, very versatile for aficionados of synthesized sounds. Minimal electro, acid house, hardcore industrial, beat question, she stands to death.

It is a machine which should please those who like a bit more complex their rhythm. Side tweaking, I am particularly a fan of the custom step by step (each step can be fully parameterized uniquely! It is in synthesis, effects ..) not to mention the LFO to swing over, this machine is completely unique to my knowledge, only one computer rivals such potential crazy! I see it as a futuristic robot, with a big pure sound and solid.

An almost perfect néobar .. if that was its incorporation of shit. Very nice metal and red screen, like a lot. But the knobs, name names .. it's a Rolls engine in a Lada plastic rotten! Is the m *********!


Top, intuitive, a true happiness except the knobs are pourraves. So, the big big flaw of this machine.
In fact I'm pretty disappointed, unlike Japanese indestructible, this bar is expensive each time I go out to play - not like it damp heat. It can even make it bugger. I ended up pots and I fart a good galley to fix it. SO! I'd say it's a machine that is made to stay in the studio.

Do not abuse and it can last a lifetime! It's not bad quality but it is frankly not sturdy (you can feel the fragility alone turning knobs)


Honest, pure, in a kind of perfect digital theory, yes, the sound is cold and metallic and basically it's not what I look - that said, there are so many possibilities that quickly finds what you want .
It is true that the integrated filter is not tip top, it means very digital. A small analog filter inside, like the old Roland, would have made a monster beauty! That said, there is nothing to add yourself to the desired output instruments (kick, toms, snare). And then, power is combined with the heat! This is my personal little recipe ...

So it is quite special and ready for experiments. Autechre fans (I am) can enjoy with it.


It is expensive but it is understandable. I hesitate to buy me a new one (because mine is damaged), and I would not take the sampler (UW) with as it stands like this, although it should be interesting to put the samples in all its effects.

Used regularly for 2 years, I remain completely in love.

Anonymous 's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
Will not go to it!


See general opinion




J I use this machine for 6 months! I have to like the sound she'd clear but c: you can not really make notes using the sequencer to the TR XOX j not like; I thought I would but in fact my nan, your two steps to your fatherly (not asser). apresje am of abstract hip hop and I have not found my happiness in seeing that J stays on mpc 1000 and that I adored the sample rt as the synthesis and suddenly not 36 machine (internal) that came the sound I wanted and suddenly I'd still feel the zoning on the same sons.quand j listening demos of others I say not that they make me better ... after I wanted to option the user waves but t was only 32 slot your sample (TFW that the bone level change has AC but it's not out) .d BTW, speaking of the bones need you the branch your pc for the last so that I not have seen his board have not j managed to make the up grade ... well here is this machine is full of little fluff stuff like that sucks, limitations you didnt with mpc and samples.et I recall that its price is asser elevate qd even for what it is: some say "yeah but it has a great sound of relief" except that when you mix your song you can track separate ringing n any machine too expensive ... my son and 500 euros for 32 sample c an be abused, c net.en fact I have to like the sounds that she left me (a long) and have not love the sequencer, for cons I well hang on the parameter c ca locs not at all like beast Concepet fau say.
for FINOR I m've used a bit like an expander of: I have sampler sounds that m interested and I have re-inject all my ds mpc 1000 and I have sold the same price I'd buy the disans that I remake me not be fooled by elektron and product policy "luxury dcaler" the sound is bad'm either cold or burning! c weird but good are those who love him. I'm going after me because I engeuler not compare to comparable stuff lol but hey concretely're not doing very much with this machine (too) type and too extreme in my gout.par against if one day elektron out a sampler can be that I will go for a ride on it because these guy's do a good job c is undeniable, the machine is clean but anyway their price will not mine: I stay on mpc for the first draft and I rebalance the ds to finalize any Ableton and I mix with acid pro 6 and a console like that I have what it takes and it will run nikel. short for me a machine not really useful or necessary due to its use and its price remains over the order of the dream that the utility ...

bojo38's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
All specifications are easily
available. We appreciate the separate outputs, brushed aluminum design,
quality effects, the possibility to treat an external source.
We can find the sound bank limited. Some would have liked more
of MIDI connectors.


The great strength of the machine, and fortunately for non-English speakers (manual
Found in French) is its ease of use. Getting started
is very simple, we toured the possibilities for use. Probably
best machine for those who want to start (and can risk
to put the price).


The sounds are quite convincing. For me, the sound bank remains despite
any smaller, but is offset by the endless possibilities of
modification. The fine adjustment (voltage kick skins, settings of charlet ...)
allow to leave the drums an incredible realism. Effects assignable to each
can track and more effectively address the lack of overall heat
that we can find (for a normal Swedish ...).
I found, as part of a live performance, lack of responsiveness and accuracy of the knobs and keys tracks especially during mute.


Machine that I use for six months and I like vriament for simplicity.
I think it lacks:
strecth a pitch (like on the old RM1X my good sir),
patterns that can run on more than 32 not 64 it would not be luxury,
of notches halfway on portards,
and a quantization unit time of knobs (1, 1 / 2, 1 / 4 etc ...) as the electribe, instead of the classic 0-127 of the machine).
Watch out for hackers and cradeurs its distal fan, if you can really make sounds grimey, twisted, long, swirling, rotate at the same time on multiple tracks of a pattern saturates the overall sound quite significantly, even compressor with a good butt.
For me this machine is a studio machine, given its limitations of live game, and a machine-oriented rather non-electro. Its interest lies mainly in the delicacy of acoustic sound settings as I mentioned above.
The machine safisfera majgré all probably full composers of minimal tech, house and dub, and even drum 'n bass. To forget the hard tek.
The price is still high for the possibilities. At this price, why not opt ​​for a MC 808, which will have the advantage of having a section of synths and samples ...

To summarize: studio, not boom-boom Cracra.

julienvoirin's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Elektron Machinedrum SPS-1
Asymtriques Audio outputs (unbalanced).
Otherwise all else t say.


Basic use as any standard rate. As against the production of sounds (synthesis) requires quite a helping hand, and exprience.
Manuel just dat now, no in French. (MESI has translated incomprhensible but it looks like aa t done by a machine). Check out the latest from the OS to see the new features (readme file). Read the latest manual date, there are new things for gniaux squenceur!
Otherwise sequencer super, super intuitive, fast, cratif. Good song mode too. BCAN for a really cool to create.

{Edit}: locks the parameters are not transmitted when the SONG mode included in the patterns jous; c'estt damage and Gnant but a little trick controurne the problem.


Its electro trs, trs and also bar so we look good. Also be somewhat simple, but the acoustic sounds synthetic formulation. Through the effects, good engines synthse.
By no Veloci against the sequencer (connect Akai pads;) )
Huge potato, very big kick in the ass with a compressor! It's not the pace Bontempi box!
Forget the presets patterns, some sounds are good but overall has given way want to believe, a show can go jusqu'o synthse engine.
{Edit}: The DMOS carrment the UW is much better quality, cost


Used for 8 months, I love it! Bought new, has hurt the portfolio. Hours of the run, I never arrested. The best is its sequencer, its look, its robustness, its lowest difficulty the edit (whatever with the habit after two months ...). Report quality lev price a bit but it's not made in China (made in Estonia).
Buy it again? hmm hard to say now that there Jomox 999. But I prfrer the Machinedrum XBase09 because the more complete and better sequencer. (And certainly not just BD, Snare, HH). J'hsite enter the UW.

{Edit} I pass in the UW and its adcuple possibility of a radical fawn. The investment is worth it.