Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

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Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by Dubersive » Sun Oct 24, 2010 11:03 pm

After a long time of thinking I should wait for the Cirklon, I've realized that I could probably get what I want and need out of simpler, less expensive analogue sequencer.

I've been reading about the Oberkorn and MAQ, and they seem like the best contenders for the most immediate and easy to use MIDI/CV sequencers. They seem almost identical, so I'm curious about how they actually differ, the strengths and weaknesses of each one, etc.

Obviously, the Oberkorn is cheaper, and if I understand correctly, all of it's patterns are locked into the same length. Judging from all patching it offers, you can make some pretty crazy sounds and sequences with it. It looks as though it lacks sequence storage, but maybe it's just not mentioned on their site...

The MAQ, on the other hands has all 3 rows completely independent of one another and (correct me if I'm wrong) you have the ability to store up to 30 sequences. I've read that it has some issues with it's CV triggering though.

Any thoughts or opinions? Which sequencer do you prefer?
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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by RD9 » Mon Oct 25, 2010 12:32 am

I own and have only used the MAQ, but it seems that the Oberkorn is slightly more immediate and hands on. On the MAQ you're completely reliant on the LED display, which is occasionally not as convenient since you have to cycle through the different menu parameters to see what the settings and values are. On the Oberkorn it seems that what you see is exactly what you get. They have their similarities, but still quite different I think.

And yes there are 30 presets you can store your settings in. I've never tried using it with CV though.

I have a hunch that the MAQ is slightly more flexible in being able to assign the three rows of knobs in different ways (note value, gate time, velocity, and other midi parameters), but maybe at the expense of being reliant on the display.

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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by Sir Ruff » Mon Oct 25, 2010 4:43 am

What would you be primarily sequencing with these? If it's just CV stuff, I would say the oberkorn would be a better bet-I think the immediacy would trump the patch storage. If you'd be using it for midi on the other hand, the MAQ is definitely the way to go. You can do all sorts of crazy things with that.

Also, it may be worth waiting for the new dark time thing from doepfer... looks pretty tight! I like the look of all the step skip options.
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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by Dubersive » Mon Oct 25, 2010 10:09 am

Sir Ruff wrote:What would you be primarily sequencing with these? If it's just CV stuff, I would say the oberkorn would be a better bet-I think the immediacy would trump the patch storage. If you'd be using it for midi on the other hand, the MAQ is definitely the way to go. You can do all sorts of crazy things with that.

Also, it may be worth waiting for the new dark time thing from doepfer... looks pretty tight! I like the look of all the step skip options.
I'll be using the sequencer mostly as the brains for my current and future analogue racks. So, for the moment, I'll be using it to control my Perfourmer, which is equipped with both MIDI and CV. I'd also like for whatever I end up buying to be easily sync'd with or possibly control my other midi gear, like my MD or Blofeld.

I have looked at the Dark Time, and I would consider it if it weren't just single-track. I need to be able harness the polyphony on my Perfourmer, and the Oberkorn or MAQ seem like the most effective ways of doing that, short of shelling out the cash for a Schrittmacher or Cirklon :/
RD9 wrote:I own and have only used the MAQ, but it seems that the Oberkorn is slightly more
immediate and hands on. On the MAQ you're completely reliant on the LED display, which is occasionally not as convenient since you have to cycle through the different menu parameters to see
what the settings and values are. On the Oberkorn it seems that what you see is exactly what you
get. They have their similarities, but still quite different I think.

And yes there are 30 presets you can store your settings in. I've never tried using it with CV though.

I have a hunch that the MAQ is slightly more flexible in being able to assign the three rows of knobs in different ways (note value, gate time, velocity, and other midi parameters), but maybe at the expense of being reliant on the display.
That is something I hadn't thought of. Is the screen a pain to navigate through, or is it intuitive enough? I don't mind screens as long I don't have to dig around for 5 minutes just to adjust a single paramater. It's good to hear that it's very capable with MIDI at least. I know I'll be able to use whatever analogue synths I get in the future with MIDI (I'm looking at you, Cwejman S1), but there are things you can do with CV that you cannot do with MIDI and vice-versa, no? It would be best if I get something that is decently capable at both options.
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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by RD9 » Mon Oct 25, 2010 10:58 pm

The LED display is fairly immediate, but no match for a physical analog interface. You have to press and press and scroll scroll scroll. Plus, the 7-segment LED is very old school so the messages are very cryptic to say the least. Look at the Doepfer logo. That's basically what the display looks like, except you only have three characters. It's part of the old school charm, but trying to understand abbreviations for "Pre Scale", "Pitch Bend", and "Step Duration" using only 3-characters is a bit challenging. Sometimes I feel like Predator.

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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by Dubersive » Tue Oct 26, 2010 4:20 pm

RD9 wrote:The LED display is fairly immediate, but no match for a physical analog interface. You have to press and press and scroll scroll scroll. Plus, the 7-segment LED is very old school so the messages are very cryptic to say the least. Look at the Doepfer logo. That's basically what the display looks like, except you only have three characters. It's part of the old school charm, but trying to understand abbreviations for "Pre Scale", "Pitch Bend", and "Step Duration" using only 3-characters is a bit challenging. Sometimes I feel like Predator.
:lol:

That is a bit of turn-off for me. I wasn't expecting it to be quite that cryptic.

Between that and the difference in price, I think I might go with the Oberkorn. It looks like it will be the most fun to work with, and will fit in nicely with the modular system I'd like to have someday. I might end up getting a Dark Time as well at some point, so I can have a dedicated sequencer for a big fat monosynth, and use the Oberkorn for my Perfourmer. I think that would be a pretty sweet set-up 8-)

Thanks again guys!
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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by RD9 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 7:53 am

Don't completely rule out the MAQ though, just in case you come across a good deal. It's still an interesting and clever instrument. Good luck!

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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by paregorickid » Wed Oct 27, 2010 11:47 pm

The only MIDI the MAQ does is sync to MIDI Clock. It is not a MIDI to CV converter.
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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by JUPITER SEX » Thu Oct 28, 2010 1:38 am

paregorickid wrote:The only MIDI the MAQ does is sync to MIDI Clock. It is not a MIDI to CV converter.
I think you may have been mis-informed

It transmits midi note and cc per step for one and also the corresponding CV and Gate... but I mean yes, you're right, it's not a midi to cv converter (that would be a different piece of gear all together) but it can still sequence either or both.

edit: Perhaps you meant to say the Oberkorn? It essentially does only sync to midi clock but has some other strange, somewhat cryptic midi functions to select sequence steps and whatnot.

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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by Dubersive » Fri Oct 29, 2010 5:07 pm

RD9 wrote:Don't completely rule out the MAQ though, just in case you come across a good deal. It's still an interesting and clever instrument. Good luck!
Oh, I'm not ruling it out. If a good opportunity arises, I'll definitely consider it (one already has, but I still haven't decided). The whole screen thing is a real let-down is all. I just wish there was a local place where I could try it out, but there isn't anything but crappy overpriced guitar stores in my area :(

Anyways, I've actually been thinking about the possibility of building a DIY sequencer with a tinkerer friend of mine. Might be too ambitious, but I was wondering if anybody knew of some good sequencer kits around that would compare with either the Oberkorn or MAQ? Something like the Klee or similar?
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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by shaft9000 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 7:14 pm

'positioning' on the Oberkorn3 is great fun!

you take the X or Y gate out, mult it, and then send it back in to one(or more heehehee) of the jacks b0-b3.
this causes the steps to play in different orders, staggered, odd only, pendulum in various combinations.
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also does wonderful things when used as a complex waveform generator: either as a 16-stage EG/modulation source, or when driven from a fast clock [OK3 becomes an audio oscillator of various waveshapes]
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Re: Oberkorn vs. MAQ 16/3

Post by Dubersive » Wed Nov 03, 2010 8:55 pm

shaft9000 wrote:'positioning' on the Oberkorn3 is great fun!

you take the X or Y gate out, mult it, and then send it back in to one(or more heehehee) of the jacks b0-b3.
this causes the steps to play in different orders, staggered, odd only, pendulum in various combinations.
SICK

also does wonderful things when used as a complex waveform generator: either as a 16-stage EG/modulation source, or when driven from a fast clock [OK3 becomes an audio oscillator of various waveshapes]
Now that is just too f**k cool. Is there some online resource that gives good ideas/tips for using the Oberkorn? From my understanding, the manual is poorly written.
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