MPC Comparisons.. Best Value?

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MPC Comparisons.. Best Value?

Post by amidst » Tue Aug 21, 2007 8:29 pm

I'm going to be in the market for an MPC within the next few weeks so I'm looking for some advice on what to get. I've been researching all over the net comparing each of the different models and what they have to offer. So far, I've pretty much ruled out the 2000 and the 500 completely and the 4000 is out of my league money-wise so at this point, I'm looking for opinions on the 60, 3000, 2500 and the 1000.

The 60 seems nice for that 12 bit old school punch, but I'm thinking it might be a little limited memory-wise (though I've never used one to know if it's really that much of a problem). But aside from that, I'm thinking I'd lose a lot of quality in my hit-hats and cymbals.. wouldn't they be more static-sounding?

I'm wondering if that's worth considering the 3000 instead. I heard that lo-fi sounds can be sampled nicely into a 3000 anyway though I don't know if that's true or not.

The 3000 has effects apparently as well but how many? I read somewhere that it has only has delay.. how useful is it exactly? Also, the low-pass filter.. does that help a whole lot or what? Ultimately, I'm trying to figure out if extra memory, low-pass and delay are worth throwing down an extra 300-400 bucks..

Then there are the newer MPCs with their extra features. I can see how extras aren't necessarily a good thing all the time. I realize that having too many options can cause loss of work-flow and ultimately turn a song-writing session into a sound-tweaking process. But on the plus side, it might be better to have the extras as they could lead to something totally amazing. Any opinions on this? Also, is the chop shop feature of the 2500 any good or would it just be better to leave that job to my computer and it's bigger screen? Are the effects of the 1000/2500 worth giving up the supposed "warmth" and extra punch of the 60/3000?

What exactly is the difference in the pads? I tried the pads on the 2000 at Guitar Center and I was very disapointed with the excessive firmness. Even the 500 felt better to me. I want something that has a little give to it. Something that dampens my hits nicely and doesn't feel like I'm jamming my fingers into a tractor tire. Of course, at the same time, I want something that won't bust anytime soon.

What's the major difference in the Roger Linn models aside from the "warmth"? Is the swing really all that different?

Are there any sites with beat samples from each of the different models? So far I've only found a site with comparison of the 60 and the 2500 and it was to compare the swing rather than the differences in sound.

Give me some of the pros and cons please! I need to figure out what flavor of MPC produces the best bang for the buck. I'd like to avoid using ebay as a rental service like I have for some of my past gear.

Thanks 8)

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Post by ascdi » Tue Aug 21, 2007 10:13 pm

i have only used a 1000 and a 2000xl. i am surprised you found the 2000 pads to be too firm. if anything mine seem way looser than the 1000 pads i had. i didn't mind either one, though.

in my opinion the new "usability" features of the later models trump any "mojo" factor of the older models. for example, having a card-reader is about 9000 times better than a disk drive, especially when you consider that many of the old akai sampler disks aren't even readable or writable in a PC floppy drive. that's just what i've found.

also, i wouldn't make a judgment in any case based on the built-in fx. the 1000 had some okay effects and some that were worthless. the 2000 fx are almost entirely wack, except for the reverbs.

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Post by Stab Frenzy » Tue Aug 21, 2007 10:22 pm

The newer models are much easier to live with and the extra sample time is a godsend if you play live, even if you don't it's great to not have to worry about running out of sample time. The 2500s pads are way better than the 1000s, possibly worth the difference in price just for the better pads.

I think a lot of the hype around the 3000 is because of the people who've used it, rather than any particular magic dust in the unit. If you're good you can make good music with anything, if you're not then no machine will help you.

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Post by Yoozer » Tue Aug 21, 2007 11:00 pm

Stab Frenzy wrote: The 2500s pads are way better than the 1000s, possibly worth the difference in price just for the better pads.
This, yes. The 2500 is still relatively compact but just gives you more of an idea of sturdyness and quality. I've had the 1000 - it's heavy, but the pads are stiff, and someone who has opened the machine found what was wrong with them (and how to fix it). The 2000 and the 2500 are supposed to have the quality pads.
I think a lot of the hype around the 3000 is because of the people who've used it, rather than any particular magic dust in the unit. If you're good you can make good music with anything, if you're not then no machine will help you.
This too, but the 4 MIDI outputs on the 3000 are nice.

The MV8000 looks like a nice alternative - pads are big and fat, feel pretty good. Also, you can hook up a monitor. It's cheaper than the 4000.
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Post by Stab Frenzy » Tue Aug 21, 2007 11:27 pm

Yoozer wrote:
Stab Frenzy wrote: The 2500s pads are way better than the 1000s, possibly worth the difference in price just for the better pads.
This, yes. The 2500 is still relatively compact but just gives you more of an idea of sturdyness and quality. I've had the 1000 - it's heavy, but the pads are stiff, and someone who has opened the machine found what was wrong with them (and how to fix it). The 2000 and the 2500 are supposed to have the quality pads.
I think a lot of the hype around the 3000 is because of the people who've used it, rather than any particular magic dust in the unit. If you're good you can make good music with anything, if you're not then no machine will help you.
This too, but the 4 MIDI outputs on the 3000 are nice.
The 2500 also has 4 midi outs.

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Post by presets » Wed Aug 22, 2007 1:11 am

the mpc 1000 has problems with pads. alot of them lose sensitivity. they also can fail to the point where they trigger or trigger multiple times with one hit. i was lucky i have had no problems. also if you get the new jj os it has a bit reducer so you can have your lo fi sounds. but value wise it might be your best option

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Post by drgarbage » Wed Aug 22, 2007 1:11 am

I own the mpc 60 and I can say that I will never sell it. That said it is very limited as far as sampling time but the sound is top notch. It is not that lofi
(emax,sp1200 are more lofi,I own these too) but you just have to watch the frequencies when you sample. Like when sampling hats and cymbals you have to cut the high frequencies before you sample or else there will be alot of hiss in your sounds. But the kicks and snares are OMG!! also if you sample vocals,fx,stabs and synths they will sound awesome. I also used the 3000 for about a year and the sound is hifi and still much more punchier than my m-audio 2496. The pads felt great on the 3000,it is the cadillac of drum machines. I also owned the 1000 and the sound was good not awesome but good and it seemed pretty heavy duty. I sold it because it the os was a little quirky (jjos) the akai os is not that good btw. But the 1000 is the best deal out of the 60 3000 and 1000 $550 128 mb ram hard drive expandability usb compact flash. It would be less hassle to own this one. Also I heard the pads suck on the 1000 but mine never failed on me.

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Post by JSRockit » Wed Aug 22, 2007 1:37 am

Best Value? It is the MPC1000 no doubt. HD capable, CF Card reader, no crazy menu diving like the 500, decent OS (or JJ OS), alot of memory compared to the old school models, decent price, small, indi outs, effects, etc. The 2500 is nice, but you are paying for pads and a bit more midi capabilities... is that worth it to you?

Sure, the 1000 pad problem is documented all over the internet...but I have had a blue 1000 for years now and have not had one pad issue. I really think it comes down to people pounding on their pads like jackasses.
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Post by presets » Wed Aug 22, 2007 1:53 am

JSRockit wrote:
Sure, the 1000 pad problem is documented all over the internet...but I have had a blue 1000 for years now and have not had one pad issue. I really think it comes down to people pounding on their pads like jackasses.
yea i havent had any problems with my blue mpc 1000 either. i knew the previous owner and knew how he played it. so its not like everyone is bad. so be aware of the problem if you are buying a used one.

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Post by amidst » Wed Aug 22, 2007 6:31 am

Hmm.. I think I'm going to scratch the 1000 off my list actually. The pad problems scare me a bit.. and I've not heard about any problems with the pads of the others. I think I'm going to go for an MPC that people say are real keepers.. something maybe a little less common.

I'm kind of surprised that hardly anyone is coming to the defense of the 3000. Where did all the praise I've been reading about in the online reviews come from?? I almost want someone to just say BUY IT, IT'S AMAAAAZING (though I'm sure someone will want to say it now just for the sake of sarcasm) I guess I want to justify the desire I've accumulated from all the reviews. But either way, I think if the effects are nothing to write home about on the new models, I might just be sold on one of the Linn signatures. Seems like a safe bet..

What about the MPC 60 coupled with the MFC filterbox? Is that a good combo? I almost want to buy that right now but it's probably just another crazy short-lived idea.

Thanks for the tip on sampling the cymbals/high hats on the 60 though. Much appreciated. It makes a lot of sense.

How many of you have actually used a 3000 or a 60 though? Just wondering.

Also, I've been wondering if the MPC has a flange/roll kind of function that makes it possible to hit a pad once and get multiple hits in rapid succession.. does it exist? I haven't been able to find anything on it but with all the buttons on an MPC, it seems like it would have to be there.

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Post by RobotHeroes » Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:14 am

amidst wrote: Also, I've been wondering if the MPC has a flange/roll kind of function that makes it possible to hit a pad once and get multiple hits in rapid succession.. does it exist? I haven't been able to find anything on it but with all the buttons on an MPC, it seems like it would have to be there.
I too have been wondering if the mpc could do drum rolls. I saw a video the other day of a korg pad kontrol being demo'ed and it had "roll mode". If an MPC had something similar that would be terrific.
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Post by Stab Frenzy » Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:54 am

The flange/roll thing you guys are talking about is called note repeat and it's on every MPC, it's one of the best things on them.

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Post by amidst » Wed Aug 22, 2007 8:56 am

I can't wait to dive into the manual on one of these things! :wink:

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Post by JSRockit » Wed Aug 22, 2007 1:27 pm

The reason noone talks about the 3000 is that it is expensive and relies on legacy equipment. Most of us have moved on and like the CF Card / HDs that modern MPCs offer... they intergrate better with computer set-ups. Don't be afraid of the 1000...especially the new ones. I'd say it will eventually be the most popular MPC ever...sales wise.
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Post by plus321 » Wed Aug 22, 2007 1:52 pm

I've only ever used a 2000xl,a 60, and a 3000 (which I own now) and of all of them, I believe the 3000 is the best sequencer. I really liked the sound of the 60 more (because that is what I was into), but the 3000 is a better machine (filters, delay, 32mb sample memory, SCSI, etc). If you like the sound of a 60, then you could just score an s-900 and sequence it with your 3000.

A very important thing to consider when buying these machines is the timing. That machine that can do everything except write your music means nothing if when you go to record the timing slips significantly. I believe it is a widespread opinion that the 3000 has the best timing of all mpcs, however, I have never attempted to verify this (i.e. with tests).

Here is a page of sequencer tests, but like I said previously, it does not test multiple mpcs beside each other.

http://www.innerclocksystems.com/index. ... ge&name=34

Perhaps if some of you here could follow the test outlined in the link above for your mpcs and post the results, then we would know if it is true or not.

Aside from this, you never know when you could score a deal on a 3000/60 because they are older equipment. I owned a 60 and found a 3000 in a local pawn shop for $450 and then I sold my 60 for $600 and basically got paid $150 to upgrade my mpc to a 3000.

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