Korg Announces Next-Generation Electribe Music Production Station


Korg today introduced the Electribe Music Production Station, a next-generation, Ableton Live-friendly 16-track polyphonic synth groovebox.

The new Electribe features sixteen back- lit Trigger pads, an intuitive X/Y Touch pad, and is now more mobile than ever, because it can run on battery power (optional AC adapter available).

Here’s the official video intro:

The Korg Electribe Music Production Station

The Korg Electribe Music Production Station features advanced analog modeling synthesis, derived from the KingKORG synthesizer, and includes filters that model classic analog synthesizers.

The Electribe’s synthesis engine offers 409 waveforms, covering analog modeling and sample playback. The synth engine is capable of unison, sync, ring modulation, cross modulation, and more.

The PCM portion provides numerous rhythmic samples, but also includes some multi-samples for keyboard input. Collaborations with Sample Magic, Loopmasters, and Prime Loops are also included in the Electribe.


Sequencing & Effects

The Electribe’s new step sequencer allows the player to create patterns while receiving visual feedback and instantly hearing the changes.

The pads can function as a chromatic keyboard for real-time input, or as a traditional step sequencer. The “Motion Sequence” function records knob and button operations, and plays them back to create smooth or stepped modulation and other effects.

The X/Y Touch pad has several functions, such as a Kaossilator-style “Touch Scale,” which plays a scale when the player slides a finger across the pad. It can also control effects and modulation sources.

Effects such as compression and overdrive are provided for each part, allowing each of the sixteen available parts to have their own sonic signature. Groove templates can also be specified for each part. Live performance is more intuitive than ever, due to the “Pattern Set” function which allows the player to instantly switch patterns by pressing the Trigger pads.

Ableton Live Integration & More

Based on a partnership with Ableton, the new Electribe features the ability to export Ableton Live clips, enabling a direct link between Electribe production and Live.

In addition to MIDI IN/OUT, Sync IN/OUT jacks are provided, allowing synchronized performances with the Volca series, Monotribe, or MS-20 Mini.


Sound System

  • Maximum Polyphony
  • 24 voices*1 (Pseudo-polyphonic*2)

Number of parts

  • 16

Sampling Frequency

  • 48.0 kHz

Number of Oscillator Types

  • 409

Number of Filter types

  • 16

Number of Modulation types

  • 72

Memory Capacity

  • 250 patterns

Insert effects

  • 38 types

Master effects

  • 32 types


  • Up to 64 steps for each part
  • Up to 24 modulation sequences for each pattern
  • Last Step can be varied for each part

Trigger Pads

  • 16 (Velocity sensitive is supported)


  • Audio
    • L/Mono Output (Standard Phone jack)
    • R Output (Standard Phone jack)
  • Headphones (Stereo mini jack)
  • Line Input (Stereo mini jack)
  • MIDI
    • In, Out (Use an included MIDI adapter cable)
  • USB
    • Type micro B
  • Sync
    • In, Out (Stereo mini jack)

External storage device

  • SD Card (More than 1GB), SDHC Card (Up to 32GB)

Power Supply

  • AC Adaptor or AA battery x 6
  • (Alkaline battery or Nickel metal hydride battery)
  • Battery Life: Approximately 5 hours
  • (POWER SAVING: ON, with Nickel-Metal Hydride battery)
  • Current Consumption is less than 500 mA


  • Zinc die cast


  • (W x D x H)
  • 339 mm x 189 mm x 45 mm / 13.35” x 7.44” x 1.77”


  • 1.6 kg / 3.53 lbs

Operating temperature

  • 0- +40? (non-condensing)


  • AC Adaptor (KA-350) , MIDI adapter cable x 2, Ableton Live 9 Lite (License card included)

Pricing and availability for the Korg Electribe Music Production Station are to be announced, but at least one retailer is listing a street price of $400. See the Korg site for more info.

Update from Korg, 09/04/14: The Electribe should be available in December 2014 at $550 (US) MSRP


96 thoughts on “Korg Announces Next-Generation Electribe Music Production Station

  1. But why so UGLY?! It looks like it’s that grey rubbery stuff that dust just STICKS to. I’d hope you could usb a keyboard to it as those pads will note do for a notation scale.

    If there’s one thing I’ve learnt from gear, it’s that “knob per function” is king, and it’s why I never did get along with my Electribe as much as I’d hoped, there was just too much functionality for the layout. It seemed to do everything a bit and none of it well.

    1. electribe mx/sx are the fastest, most direct pieces of gear i ever used.
      no idea what you on about.
      i do admit this new one looks plasticky though…

      1. Next time try not dismissing gear based on superficial things.

        Think classics like the 808 aren’t fugly? We’ve learned to like the way they look, because they’ve become classics.

        I like that the new Electribes look professional, where the older Electribes had more of a ‘toy-like’ look. Plus, the tubes on the later Electribes were bollocks!

        Looking forward to checking these new boxes out myself.

        1. What are you talking about? The old electribes looked like steam punk time machines(the ones with the valves, the first ones did look like crap) . Fucking metal front plate of manliness sticking out from the rest of the box, ready to rip the guts out of any heckler with it’s sharp edges. Valves full of electrons of doom, back-lit by the fires of the eternal limbo labyrinth. White, left over knobs from broken lawn mowers thrown onto it randomly with letters all around them and white buttons from coffee machines that flashed pinkish red, the thought of having to understand them giving you insomnia. Lastly a yellow screen capable of curing bulimia. Good stuff!. I’m surprised they didn’t have a ‘Sonar Mode’. This one though looks like shit. Every fucking reviewer had to say, ”It might look like plastic, but it’s actually metal.” WHY THE FUCK MAKE IT LOOK LIKE PLASTIC ON PURPOSE? METAL ROCKS!! When this finally gets in my hand, it’s gonna be heavily pimped.

    2. Wow my comment was perfectly reasonable. It wasn’t at all inflammatory, but it gets hidden?! Ok… No alternate opinions here. One voice, one vision. Glad we aren’t all mindless sheep or anything.

      1. You should probably worry less about what people think of a comment you make on the color scheme of a piece of electronic music gear, you’ll sleep better.

  2. Great IDEA !!!

    I read this on the website

    “A new workflow with Ableton Live
    Transform inspiration into a creative production. KORG has collaborated with Ableton to offer a new music production workflow that combines the best of hardware and software. The electribe can internally save and export patterns in Ableton Live format. Individual patterns and parts are saved as scenes and clips in an Ableton Live Set. Use Live’s powerful Session and Arrangement workflows to edit and and refine your ideas, perform or record new parts, arrange your ideas, and mix your song. The Korg electribe includes Live Lite. “

    1. I can’t wait to see how this is implemented! A battery powered groovebox that saves all my work in a format that can be dumped directly into Ableton? Yes please!

  3. Love the battery support…

    It IS pretty fugly though. As long as they don’t make us pay too much for their crappy quality standards, it could be interesting…

  4. UGLY? No fuckin way it’s more ugly than… well, ALL pervious electribe models. It looks great, and as a sampler, it’s not uninteresting, battling up against Akai’s newer hardware sample controllers. Dedicated compact hardware samplers are rare. And if it allows for a ton of modulation n’ shit of these samples, it’s probably pretty usable as well.

  5. true, it’s not very glorious. Unlike the former electribes. You may not like them, but they were more flamboyant with their red & blue metal panel and lamp amp. This one looks like a plastic thing, and the less under the pads are really ugly and cheap…

  6. Interesting points not covered: (from an unnamed inside source)
    Both Electribes force you to create 4-bar patterns instead of the typical 16 step 1-bar pattern. This helps prevent artists from making stale 1-bar loop music.

    Also the 16 filters are the same as the King Korg, including the various modelling filters (Oberheim, Moog, MS20, Prophet).

      1. Ahh. Yes. I don’t know all the info. However I’m pretty sure the patterns will be 64 steps by default. With the 1-4 buttons selecting which bar is being edited.

        But it doesn’t surprise me that they would also let you do 16.

        1. 16 parts per pattern. Each part can have different last steps. It roght in the specs. One part can have 5 steps, another can have 12, another can have 16, etc. It is very flexible.

          1. Oooh. Different step counts per-part. I’m liking that.

            Still the guy who told me said it could only do 4-bars. But I guess he’s just not right.

      2. Haha classic cunningham’s law.

        The best way to get information online is to give misinformation for some other plebe to do the research for you.

        You walked right into it.

  7. Hmm…I can’t decide which version to get. Having 16 filters on the synth version sounds leeelly nice, as opposed to 3 filters on the sampler version. The sampler version however also offers up analog modeling synthesis, along with the sampler engine. What to get…1st world problems…Need more demos and specs ASAP, Korg!

    1. Yes. Proper demos are going to be really important here.

      If the filters are indeed from the King Korg, then listening to King Korg demos is only mildly helpful because most of them are showcasing chords and that kind of playing. Not so much monophonic sequences. But if I recall, the filters were pretty accurate.

      1. The king korg filters are definitely good though definitely not quite analog (duh).

        If this has dual filters, that would be killer. Lack of dual filters is a buzzkill on king korg, which I have and use a lot. Makes me keep my Alesis Ion around yet longer…

      2. Please also note, the electribe unit is polyphonic, so listening to the KingKorg can absolutely be helpful Have you read the specs at all, Alex?

        1. I thought it was only two-note polyphonic. Not quite the same as the King Korg.

          Also, dual filters would be nice but I doubt it will have them. But there’s nothing like parallel dual filters.

          1. A little research explains the asterisks: 24 voices per pattern, not 2 voices per part.

            *1: The polyphony of the entire pattern varies depending on the Oscillator, Filter, and Insert Fx type.

            *2: Independent parameters for each voice have been simplified; four voices share the parameters of one conventional voice.

            1. 24 voices *1 does not mean “24 voices X 1”

              Those are asterisks, meaning there are explanatory notes. Just to clarify for everyone who is confused

    2. Wondering the same thing here. I think I’ll go for the synth as I always like more filters and I have good sampling choices already…but if it does onboard resampling with a good workflow that might make a difference.

  8. As much as I have loved the newer Korg products… they really dropped the ball with these new Electribes and Volca. In fact I feel a bit duped. The thing that made the Volcas and older Electribes great is that that Korg created their own independent pieces of hardware that can function together in a modular fashion. It seemed their developmental track was set with the Monotribes, MS20, and the cooperative effort of the Little Bits devices that as a company, Korg was aimed at providing the user with quality albeit inexpensive, customizable, alternatives to using computers.

    Why are we suddenly relying on Ableton, Apple, and other external recording/editing processes/equipment?! I feel like they have just assured the customer that these will be temporal pieces of gear until they excite us with other future products. Maybe Korg seems to feel it has to compete with Roland…

    1. You’re right. Adding integration into the practically ubiquitous ableton platform is just wrong. I heard that the device won’t even turn on unless it detects a valid ableton software license. It also uses a proprietary audio cable that encrypts the signal, and is only compatible with korg and ableton products! Those bastards!

      1. I think I detect a note of sarcasm 😛

        I agree with Matos on this – potential Ableton integration is really only a plus. Even if you don’t employ it, you’re still getting an updated EMX with improved digital specs, slightly decreased analog-ish specs (no tubes) and mechanical improvements like velocity-sensitve pads and an X-Y controller. No one’s making anyone use Ableton, it’s just there if you want it. Also, sounds like it’s premiering at least $200-$300 cheaper than the original EMX did, and we’re not adjusting for the difference between 2003 dollars and 2015 dollars.

        It might help that I’m an Ableton user, so exporting parts sounds exciting. I wonder if we can export parts to Audio clips, MIDI clips, or both. I’d be interested to learn more about that functionality.

        On the other hand, I do agree with letterz’s sentiments on the Volca Sampler, which basically doesn’t allow you to use the unit AT ALL unless you own a certain platform (iOS).

      2. >>> I heard that the device won’t even turn on unless it detects a valid ableton software license. It also uses a proprietary audio cable that encrypts the signal, and is only compatible with korg and ableton products!

        If that’s really the case, I’d buy this thing on the 33rd of YeahRight. I have no issues with Ableton, but boxing in your product that way is a bad move. I don’t work for these people and I have many open-ended options that don’t require me to jump to someone else’s tune. I’m not interested in being that defined by one company’s idea of a creative work flow.

        On the positive side, its good to see some KingKorg in it. The keyboard on the original is a laughably cheap POS, but the sound is outstanding. If they made a module with all of the original’s knobs and displays on it, I’d be keen on it. Its partial inclusion here makes a useful product a lot better.

        1. That would be quite stupid for a device primarily known for letting you leave your computer at home. Have a citation for this or just making it up?

          1. Sorry for the confusion?! I was making up a seemingly impossible situation to highlight the fact that ableton intergration is nothing but a bonus and in no way dupes you, or prevents you from making music with the device.

            1. The notion of “getting duped” refers to Korg’s recent practice of creating equipment that operate within themselves apart from any computer program or it’s work flow. I’m well aware that one does not have to use a computer… It is just my opinion that making this choice will limit the likelihood of these Electribes, unlike their forbearers, becoming machines we will all still use and love 20 years from now.

              1. every sentence you write is just pure drivel. they reek of pseudointellecutal bullsiht.

                the boxes are standalone and all of the software compatibility is a brilliant extra. you are clutching at some misguided perception and trying to defend it but its just massively flawed.
                korg is not dependent on ios or live. these are extras to help integrate the boxes with the most popular platforms. even if the platforms change, of expand, that can be solved by updating the firmware.

    2. You are looking in the wrong direction. Korg is opening up your world, not closing it. If they can export to Ableton Live, you should expect to see direct export to many other DAWs follow soon after. And since we are saying it, every damn machine and iPad app should do the same thing from now on. The record-thru-a-wire concept is decades old now, and we have smoother ways of doing things.

      1. I guess you are just as big of a tool as I am Cult Of Reason, wasting time on every one of these tragic “forum” pages trying to have genuine intelligent discourse with those who make different musical and production choices.

    3. either this is sarcasm or incredible lack of grey matter.
      funny you camouflage it with some eloquence but all you said is complete rubbish.
      i mean really you have literary no idea wtf you are talking about.
      just so we are clear.

  9. I like the shape, but the monotonous colour, zero contrast, and grid spacing of the knobs are a bit of a bad 80s trip. Hope I can pull off the knobs to replace with something more colorful and break up the shape.

    Apart from that, bravo again Korg!

  10. I am curious on the feel of the pads, but other than that, I don’t know how I cannot buy one. This is what I have wanted, for the price I’ve been wanting.

  11. If you notice, the video was only for the electribe music production station. Not the electribe sampler! They start the video with 2014 and show only the electribe. At the end of the video they show the sampler coming soon 2015 . So I guess the electribe will be out this year and the sampler in 2015. My first synthtopia comment 🙂

  12. I had countless hours of fun with the originals and made some music I’m (still) very happy with using them.
    If the new versions are 1/2 as immediate and down right fun as the first lot, I’m in.

    Well done Korg!

  13. I’m going to get both of these I think, as long as they live up to expectations. I’m actually thinking of also getting a volca sample and just loading it up with my favourite drum samples as a go to drummachine.
    Off to ebay to list some unused gear 🙂

  14. Most of the people posting negative comments probably bought big wall wart boxes from elektron or roland. I’m in for the sampler coupled with my ipad, op1 and that tt303. PORTABLE ACID HOUSE 4EVA!!!

    1. that’s easily one of the aesthetically most unpleasant combos of gear i’ve ever heard of. oh and have fun keeping your stuff charged up all the time.

  15. I really hope they have the new NanoKey3 and NanoKontrol3 in the pipeline.
    They should be battery powered and have 3.5mm MIDI jacks so we can use them with the new Electribes without power adapters or computers.
    This would be super nice portable setup. But Electribes have to dynamically allocate MIDI control to the selected part, like in Live.
    Select the part and play it with NanoKey3, change the active part on Electribe and record the new phrase.
    And NanoKontrol3 should be able to act as volume control of 8 Electribe parts with one button switch for parts 1-8 and 9-16, like a miniature mixer.
    Oh and MIDI soft thru so we can connect NanoKey3 to NanoKontrol3 and NanoKontrol3 to Electribe.

  16. Doesn’t it figure I just bought an ipad and Gadget. I only made the jump when the audio output on my EMX started getting too noisy for stage use after only a few years. I wonder how the new Electribes will fare in the long haul, they seem like they have a lot of promise.

  17. look. its simple.I WANT A SAMPLER!!!!!that samples.and sequences.and can play via midi or touchstrip.
    I have an sk1 from decades ago that can sample and i can play it and sequence it. there needs to be a new way to make a quick song from sampled burps really.
    how sweet that would be with a filter and a few fx.and a few tracks for sequencing, even like four. and these days, save to or playback from an sd card.
    the micro granny arduino does that so wtf? but not the other stuff.
    i know they want to sell us a hundred different little boxes, but they arent offering what i want. i dont use apple stuff at all.i dont use ableton or reason, and dont really use a computer for music at all.so i cant use this.and i almost creamed when i heard the words volca and sample in the same sentence.
    a million types of midi controllers out there and no simple portable/battery powered way to CHOOSE YOUR OWN SOUND TO PLAY AND RECORD/SEQUENCE IT?
    if someone made a small battery groovebox with a touch strip(plays notes and selects parameters volca/miniak style, 8 pads (or an emu mp7/xl7/px7 style octave of pads ), eight knobs, eight buttons all horizontal and a row of navigation, multifunctional select butttons going vertically, that uses midi, and depending on switchable modes does basic samples,sequence and synth (and i mean va and sampled/acoustic/etc instruments waveforms at the same time) and fx, all from and to sd card, and i dont need any specific software or i devices,just MIDI AND USB … I WILL GIVE YOU ALL MY MONEY!!!!!!!!
    make a super version with 16 everything instead of eight! like a teenage engineering op type thing but bigger and better.i know its asking a lot but it is possible and makes so much sense.except we might not be buying new crap all the time. that would be a good thing though really.
    a truly portable, flexible,useful,complete INSTRUMENT for like musicians.
    so, basically,its just a yamaha qy100, (input fx too why not) with korg microsampler with a good interface. the beat thang tried it think.
    DO IT.

    1. I get what your’e saying. As much as I love the Op-1 if it were to have an xox style sequencer and patterns like an elektron or electribe . It would be the perfect end all be all device for me.

  18. pardon the ranting,
    but a product announcement that actually explains what a new product does exactly and how , would be useful….instead of making some sounds,i want specs.maybe more than a minute of some noise out of it.the korg intro vids for the new volca, electribe and mini kaoss pad, all dont really let me know if i want these nor how they could be useful. i love korg, but this annoys me.
    i really feel in this day of tablets capable of doing so many jobs, their new devices value has to lie in their musically usable interface and quality of dedicated functionality combined with flexiblity and compatability.
    also, i can buy a touch screen android phone for $70 (in australia even)(vs. $700 for iphone), that is a s powerful as a computer i flirted with making music on 10 years ago, but noone has built one into an instrument with a midi input or microphone,fx, a few knobs etc, or all the crap i was ranting about in my last post.
    imma gonna wait another 5 years to buy anything new i think.

  19. The idea of a battery powered groove box is cool….although I’m pretty happy with the volca keys and beats, or various ios apps, including the iKaossilator and iElectribe apps.

    I do wonder if the file transfer may end up being limited to Ableton Live. We’ve certainly seen partnerships from different companies over the years…I have been considering switching to Live, but then I was also considering the Push controller.

    Personally, I love my ESX (sd). The tube gain has kinda been my secret weapon for mixing VA/modelling gear with anologue gear.

    I think I’m more intrigued by the volca sample, although I can understand the frustration non ios users are facing…I would love to transfer data to my KO2 without a Mac.

  20. Forgive the n00b question, but the specs are confuzzling to me. It says 16 parts with each part containing up to 64 steps. Okay, I get that. But how many of these parts are “active” at once? In other words, could you have, say, 16 64 step patterns running at once?

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