Korg Electribe Sampler Music Production Station Offers Sampling, Synthesis, Live Integration


Korg today introduced the Electribe Sampler Music Production Station, a new sampler in the Electribe series that’s designed to be a simple and fast sampler for live performance and music production.

According to Korg, “The Electribe sampler has been reborn, with cutting-edge technology inherited from popular Korg products such as the KingKORG, kaossilator, kaoss pad, and taktile.”

The internal memory lets you save 250 patterns, including preset patterns. There’s also support for the polyphonic playback, for house music style chord progressions and more.


Electribe Sequencing

Using the 16 pads placed on the front of the unit, you can create patterns intuitively while hearing and ‘seeing’ the sounds.

You can use the pads as a keyboard to realtime-record phrases, and also perform step recording by entering the pitch and rhythmic value one note at a time. The patterns you create can be used in alternate forms as you perform by taking advantage of the “step jump” feature inherited from the volca series, or by changing the “last step” to vary the length of each part.

There’s also a “motion sequence” function that lets you record knob and button operations and use them in the pattern that you create.

Either drums or synths can now be assigned to each of the 16 parts (i.e., the 16 pads). For example you could create complex rhythms by assigning drums to all of the 16 parts.

Intuitive beat making with the Trigger pads and Touch pad

Familiar from the kaossilator is the “touch scale” function that lets play the Electribe by moving a finger across the touch pad.

The trigger pads that were popular on the taktile are also provided, making it easy to create phrases intuitively. The trigger pads can also be used for drum input. Settings allow you to switch velocity on/off.


Electribe Hybrid Synth Engine Combines Sampling And Modeling

In addition to a sampler sound engine that lets you use your own unique and original sounds (samples), the Electribe Sampler offers several types of analog modeling sound engines.

There can be up to a total of 999 preset and user samples, and a maximum of 270 seconds of sampling time (calculated as monaural) can be used. The unit is shipped with numerous drum, rhythm/phrase loops, and hit samples included. (collaborations with Sample Magic, Loopmasters, Prime Loops are included)

Advanced use of samples with Time Slice and Resampling functions

The “Time Slice” function detects attacks within the phrase and slices it appropriately, allowing you to play the phrase at the desired tempo without significantly affecting the sound.

Sounds within a sliced part can also be used separately by assigning them to steps or parts. You can even apply an effect to a sample, and then resample it while using the knobs to vary the pitch or modulation.

Effects & Groove Templates

The new Electribe Sampler provides effects such as compression and overdrive for each part, giving you uncompromising control over the nuances of individual sounds that differ subtly between genres. The groove function can be specified for each part, letting you apply a groove to your phrase simply by selecting a template.

electribe-sampler-live-performancePerformance Features

The master effects can be controlled from the touch pad just like on the Kaoss pad. The effects include not only spatial-type effects that shape the overall acoustics, but they also include effects that apply aggressively musical transformations, such as the “Vinyl Break” effect inherited from the Kaoss pad series, and the newly developed “Seq Reverse” and “Odd Stepper” that change the playback order of the sequencer.

Insert effects can be assigned for individual parts, opening up even more complex sound-design possibilities.

There’s also a “pattern set” function which lets you switch patterns by pressing trigger pads, and an “event recording” function that records that performance. In addition to MIDI IN/OUT, “Sync IN/OUT” is also provided, allowing synchronized performances with the volca series, monotribe, or MS-20 mini.

The unit can run on six AA batteries, so you can take it along with you anywhere.

Ableton Live Integration

Korg has collaborated with Ableton to offer a new music production workflow that combines the best of hardware and software.

The Electribe Sampler 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. Thjis lets you 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 Sampler includes Live Lite.

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

61 thoughts on “Korg Electribe Sampler Music Production Station Offers Sampling, Synthesis, Live Integration

  1. This product looks cool. I’ve been wanting a little sampler (that can actually SAMPLE) and the trickled-down KingKorg synth engine should sound great. Hoping this comes in at around $300 but I have a feeling it’s going to be around $450.

    1. I still think the microsampler was unfairly ignored…it did full range keyboard samples (though without time stretch) If only it had a decay loop!

      1. The microsampler was good for short loop percussive patterns, but really showed its flimsiness if you tried to record longer samples or tried to load strings or organ samples.

      1. It looks like a cool sampler with effects and such, but the mpx 16 isn’t able to sequence them at all. This new Korg stuff looks great though!

          1. I get it. I would still consider anything with real-time control more than a sample playback machine. The Akai MPX8 is what I’d consider a sample playback machine.

  2. I mentioned this in the other article but the new Electribes force you to make all your patterns be 4-bars long. That way you’ll be more creative and have longer phrases. No more annoying 1-bar loops.

    That might miff some of you but I think it’s a refreshing restriction to impose. I think these things will be great. I just don’t know which to get.

    This one doesn’t have the modeled filters. Just basic LP HP and BP. But that’s the only big difference.

  3. May not to too pricey, seems to be in a nanoPAD2 form, in fact the bottom half of the device is a nanoPAD2 with lights – down to the plastic and beveled edge – but maybe the top half of the design and those electrics is super pricey – but why follow the nano-range in design, in that case.

      1. It’s not nano style casing. Both machines are made out of die cast zinc. Some people prefer their gear to look at least semi-professional and not like My First Drum Machine by Mattel.

  4. To me it looks quite dull and boring, compared to the old flashy Electribes. The portability and battery powered operation make it more interesting, but I can’t see myself upgrading from the ESX-1. Sure, the effects are probably a lot better and velocity sensitive pads are a good feature but other than that and the synth engine, they don’t differ that much. Plus, ESX-1 has vacuum tubes! However if I used Ableton instead of Logic, I’d be very interested! Depends on the price really.

    1. I love how you’re glossing over all the main selling points (portability, battery power, velocity sensitive pads, better effects, a friggin synth engine, improvements across the board), but the old ESX is better because it’s “flashier” and has “vacuum tubes”!

      LOL. Sounds like some serious post-purchase rationalization.

      1. Hang on, I’m not saying it’s better at all! I’ve pointed out the good stuff, but I won’t be buying it, because I mainly use it for sample based drum programming, so I don’t really need velocity sensitive pads or the sound engine. By saying that to me it look dull and boring, I was saying exactly that, the visual aspect of it is not that pleasing in my opinion.
        Of course I’m trying to fight the Gear Aquisition Syndrome as well!

          1. oh internet. drawing the wrong conclusions (I didn’t write that at all!). Yes, of course I judge gear ALSO by it’s looks. The most important thing I consider about a drum sampler machine is the WORKFLOW (aside from audio quality being up to par). Since the workflow doesn’t seem like it has changed much, I won’t be upgrading. However if I didn’t own the ESX-1 I’d definitely be considering the NEW electribes (Yes, despite the fact that I think they look dull!). While the look of the product isn’t the most important factor; don’t fool yourself, it definitely is a factor.

            1. that was my point. ofcourse workflow is key, but since the only info is a promo vid and a broad spec sheet so you really don´t know jack about it.
              that is what is ridiculous about your proclamations.
              i really do not give one fk what you will or will not buy. i just find your thought process full of holes is all.

  5. “The trigger pads that were popular on the taktile are also provided.” – I wonder if this will have the chord to pad feature that the tactile has.

  6. 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 completely missing the point. They can absolutely be used independently of Ableton. They just improved the integration with Ableton. You could use these standalone forever and never hook it up to Ableton and get tons of use – nothing about these RELIES on integration with Ableton.

      1. I’m sorry, but I respectfully disagree… The point of that observation was that of long term usage. As a user of these new pieces, in order to operate at the product’s peak, one is left beholden to that software. After those platforms inevitably pass on, without presentation of an alternate platform or hardcore hacking, it leaves a customer with an extremely limited product for future usage.

        1. “in order to operate at the product’s peak”

          No, you’re able to integrate with Ableton (Live Lite is included) if you’d like, this doesn’t determine whether or not you’re using the product to its “peak”. Using it for the purpose you bought it for is what determines if it’s being used to its “peak”.

        2. @Letterz
          This is probably the stupidest thing I’ve read on synthtopia. People just want to get angry about every little thing these days.

          The option is there for…….

          Fuk it I’m not going to bother trying to explain the concept to you, it would be a waste of time…

          1. I’m sorry you that you are confusing anger with constructive criticism. I own and use a tremendous amount of Korg products. If you can’t see that the overall aesthetic and difference in the application of technology in these particular product lines have shifted, you are simply not paying attention. The statement was made simply to call attention to that fact. If that is what Korg wants to do, that is fine, that being said I think I have the right to be disappointed with their change in direction.

        3. You get a free copy of Live Lite, so if you want you can just keep using that. The .ALS format is basically gzipped XML (if you’re not a computer person, trust me when I say that these are very basic and easily accessible file types for any programmer). Since the Electribe will be kicking out audio clips without any plugin or effect-dependent information, I *strongly* suspect that other DAW manufacturers will start offing ALS import in order to be compatible with the Electribes, and you’ll see very cheap or free utilities for converting the Electribe ALS files to different formats.

          It wasn’t worth doing this before because a typical Live project used a whole bunch of built-in Live instruments/effects, which would obviously not load properly in any other software. But the Electribe output files won’t use any of that, it’ll just be audio clips on a timeline with maybe volume and pan automation data. I would have slightly preferred OMF (a file format that’s fully open source, on which I think ALS is based), but realistically there are a lot more people who use Live than use Pro Tools or Adobe Audition.

    2. “Why are we suddenly relying on Ableton, Apple”

      Simple: they went with the best companies that make the best products. What the hell do you use?

      “In fact I feel a bit duped.”


    3. @letterz, do you really think this asinine assesment is really so clever you had to post it twice, verbatim.
      i pity you kid. honestly.

      1. No, I don’t think that statement was particularly stunning, only that it applied to both of these product lines. I thought this forum was used for beneficial discourse between peers with different interests and skill sets…

  7. I’m always carefully critical about buying new gear, because integration into your system and longevity are major issues. Each new thing often has an editor to wrestle and may have connection issues that aggravate your rig a little. Even if it slots in well right away with no sweat, you still have to learn how to use it musically. Its a bland-looking creature, but let’s see how it works out over time. People will dismiss the graphics if its seriously useful. With the number of older Electribes around, this one has a pretty good chance of acceptance. Just keep in mind that OSs do get shelved, promised updates sometimes stay vaporware and companies sometimes abandon things they hawked a year earlier. Buy a thing because it works for you as it is.

  8. Hmmmmm, not seeing any MIDI ports, so guess it’s USB MIDI only? Shame if that’s the case, my current Electribe SX is basically running all my other gear over MIDI DIN.

    1. It uses a mini headphone jack to MIDI DIN adapter. Some newer low profile harware is using this, like the MPC Studio (which is too thin for a MIDI DIN to be on the case).
      Don’t worry! You will be able to hook up your gear 😀

        1. Look again, it was in reply to the first comment, not yours. We must have posted at the same time. Now please keep calm and comment on.

  9. Rad. Go Korg go!

    I LOVE that they are making all this great gear at affordable prices, putting music making within reach of more poeple.

  10. Still trying to figure out how much sample space is alotted to internal memory. I want to actually be able to use all the space on the card if need be or be able to use folders of drum hits but not be as limited as esx sd was .Either way it’s a new electribe!!!!!!!

  11. this looks very very cool. man Korg let the freakin flood gates open.

    if this is like a marriage between an MPC and an Oktatrack? i wonder. I’m paying attention to this one.

      1. “Deep”, how exactly? I’m curious to know as I’m in the market for a sampler and sequencer. I’ve read the specs but I’m interested in hearing what you think of the Octatrack.

  12. f 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 🙂

  13. I’ve been waiting a very long time for a new sampling Electribe. I am very excited about this. I am sure it will be capable of some very interesting things.

  14. The Korg site says the Electribe Sampler has a maximum of 270 seconds of mono sampling time (half that if stereo). I’m assuming this means the total amount of all samples loaded into memory, not that you can have one 270 second sample and then have more, correct? Not that you’d want that, just curious.

    But is there a limit to individual sample length? Let’s say I wanted a 30 second drone or vocal sample running in the background. Is that possible or does your 4 measure pattern length limit it since there is no real song mode?

  15. Can someone please help me to understand the differences between korg electribe 2 sampler and korg 2 electribe and also which one is the best to working more on drum textures?


    Crz zrc

  16. some very negative limits are on the this machine
    the first point is the most dummy limiting

    1.electribe 2 have no save all project file – you can import and export individual pattern only
    2.electribe have no songmode.
    3 electribe 2 .patternset-record is only one file.
    after recording session ,you can not overdub or change pattern .you dont see patterns
    4.electribe 2 patternchain is not legato or imediality-it play pattern from start to end only .
    5.electribe 2 can not send midi cc from sequencer motion recording to external gear.only the knobs can send it. useless as full main sequencer
    6.electribe 2 can not copy or erase bars in same pattern
    7.electribe 2 can not doubling sequence bars when events are in next bar
    8.electribe 2 can not automate 8 bars creshendis .you must start on next pattern
    9..electribe2 can not copy individual sounds to another pattern .
    10 electribe 2 can not save sounds as an preset.

    sorry .
    it would be usefull some guys can send it to korg support .my english is to limited

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