Elektron is a real example of what can happen when passionate people think outside the box to build something their own way. Would you expect to find the heart of a synthesizer inside a 1980s-era computer? Probably not, but that's exactly what a group of Swedish students saw in 1998. They built a synth based on old-school technology originally designed for the Commodore 64... and, against all odds, they pulled it off. Elektron's first synthesizer, the Sidstation, showed the real potential in that basic sound chip, and started the new company on its way to becoming one of the most sought-after names in electronic instruments.
You won't find the old Sidstation here, of course. But the same devotion that went into the debut model is still alive in Elektron's newer gear. Take the Analog Keys 4-Voice Synthesizer, for instance: this is the go-to choice if you want an Elektron synth with a built-in keyboard controller. With 37 keys, it has plenty of range to play with, while still being compact enough to take wherever you like. When you hear the deep, warm chords, tones and basslines this machine can make, it's like a testament to what an analog synth can do.
If percussion is more your style, Elektron can tempt you with a couple versions of their excellent Machinedrum MKII Drum Machine. The SPS-1+ is the standard edition, based on four original drum synthesis methods and featuring a sequencer so customizable it can power any MIDI-based studio or live setup. If you're looking for even more control, check out its big brother, the SPS-1UW+. The "UW" stands for "User Wave," which brings more input options and customizability to the table and even comes bundled with a USB MIDI interface.
One thing you'll notice about Elektron's product lineup is that it's not very big - and that's because it doesn't need to be. With just the electronic instruments found in this section, you have access to more than enough tools to create entire tracks at a professional level completely from scratch. What started as a long-shot design by ambitious college students has turned into a world-class hardware maker ready to take on the needs of any studio.
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