Oh thanks @2disbetter
That’s a really nice setup you have there, best wishes filling those gaps.
Yes, I almost exclusively use the Octatrack for MIDI duties, it’s been the stop|start|reset of my system for as long as I have had it. If there is one piece of gear I know inside out it’s the Octatrack. I’ve been through all the ‘tricks’ with it, it’s been the workhorse of my system for ages.
…but several things happened that started to shift things around; The ER-301 came along and while I know it’s not the done thing to compare, the truth for me is that the ER-301 did replace the audio side of the Octatrack.
I was also using the audio ins on the Octatrack to mix the signals coming from my modular, again, it is really good at this, but I was always frustrated that it didn’t have 8 ins. I needed more. SO I tried using a couple of sound cards to mix in, this was a huge leap because all of a sudden I had 16 ins - total luxury. but even this wasn’t enough, I was regularly using them all, mainly due to all the stereo modules that seem to have worked their way into my rack. So, more recently, a rather large mixer turned up, 32 channels of pure awesomeness - I finally feel like I can breathe and not have to be concerned with counting channels. The summing is out of this world, the clarity is jaw dropping. My friend thought I was ‘ballooning’ but when he came over, he too was ‘ok - you’re right - it is amazing’. So mixer duties we’re a thing of the past in the OT.
For melody sequencing duties, the Stillson Hammermk][ blew me away, but it is a quirky little beast, I love it to bits, but there were times when I needed something much more predictable - enter the ER-101/2. Sequencing sorted.
Chords, played around with a variety of things, including a whole bunch of techniques in the ER-301, the 4MS SMR, and chord modules like the Telharmonic, but I just wasn’t feeling the joy that much. Argos Bleak totally smashes that particular problem to pieces and adds a whole slew of weirdness to boot - it’s delicious!!
So, I was left with drum sequencing, the OT still reigned here and in many ways it still does. The micro timing options are killer for example, the new updates are going to take it to yet another level. but it was just nagging me, you don’t need midi, everything could be in modular. but I struggled to find something that satisfied my desire for playability and that elusive random but still coherent aspects that I always struggled to program. I tried all manner of things, and while they were all excellent in their own right, none of them quite hit the mark. Grids for example was loads of fun, but I always kept getting frustrated with it because it would be close to what I wanted, but not quite there.
My journey to find the drum sequencer I really wanted seemed to be at that point where you have been walking for days through the mountains, sleeping rough, perhaps not eating so well and you’re desperately in need of a shower, a good meal and a comfortable bed to sleep in… then came Four Bricks Rook… it’s a new affair, literally a couple of days, but it’s most definitely a very high contender to fill that role. For the first time last night I felt like I didn’t need to reach for the OT. I will of course see how things go, but this is looking really promising.
Ooops bit of a long post, but I hope it helps explain where I am at and why I am pursuing this goal. I know that MIDI is still a totally viable solution, there are still things the OT can do that I would struggle to implement in the modular, but the modular does things the OT never could and I think I am happier with that