Let’s talk hip-hop sampling.

In my (and many, many others’) humble opinion, sampling and sample-chopping in Maschine is ridiculously fast. It is. Watch the 2 minute video above. Granted, he’s using manual slice mode, which is super fast, but manual sample chopping (MPC-style, NO slicing) is still fast as hell. This is true with Maschine standalone, or the plugin version (for me, inside Reaper, or Ableton).

Why is sample chopping easy with Maschine? Because you can manually edit the sample start and end points (on each pad/chop) with the encoders. You can also zoom in and out, and scroll, with them. This is CORE sampler functionality and should be everywhere, with EVERYTHING.

What sampler plugins also offer this functionality?

Poise (Windows-only) by One Small Clue (Shannon Oram) of Australia (I really hope they get the fires under control down there… god, I hope so… it breaks my heart every day)… anyway… Shannon abandoned Poise in 2018, and it hasn’t been updated since 2016. It is still the easiest-to-use, most powerful MPC-style VST sampler out there. Without a doubt. Search YouTube for videos about it, including my 4-part tutorial series from 2012 or 2013… covering every aspect of it, in about an hour.

Geist 2 by FXpansion (now a subsidiary of Roli). You can midi-map the sample start and end points (and loop start/end points), and enable those midi knobs/encoders for every “focused’ sample (the last pad you hit) but what sucks is, the waveform display isn’t updated with your edits! With Maschine and Poise, you can see the greyed-out part of the waveform, where you edited the start and end (so you can still see the entire length of each sample). Close, but no cigar, Geist 2. Still, Geist 2 is a lot of fun.

Nerve by Xfer – I think you can map the sample start/end points (focused) with a generic midi controller. I think. Correct me if I’m wrong. But… $199… ugh.

Reasamplomatic5000 (built-in sampler plugin by Reaper)– You can map the sample start/end points, through the “Learn” function of Reaper’s FX chain window. Not exactly easy, but possible. But… it’s not exactly quick to set up say, a 16-part sampler… you need multiple instances of Rs5k on the track, and have to configure things in a specific way. Not easy. Though, possible.

honorable mention: ShortCircuit (no longer available). Powerful… can have the start/end points mapped, through Reaper’s FX chain window. Kind of a pain, but good.

What sampler plugins or software programs DO NOT offer this very basic functionality?

BATTERY 4 by Native Instruments (mouse only). Why is this sampler so PRETTY but so damn DATED? Give me total midi CC control of those start/end points!!!

TAL Sampler (SO much can be midi-mapped and learned…. EXCEPT the start/end points!! Are you KIDDING me?)

GEIST 1 (still a fun plugin/instrument… but, mouse only!)

SERATO SAMPLE (though, it’s still very fast, and A LOT of fun… mouse only)

ABLETON LIVE / SIMPLER (unless you own Push 2, or the Novation SL MKIII, or Novation Launchkey Mini MK3). The only one you can visually see (on the hardware) is Push 2. However, you can edit the LOOP start/end points with the SL MKIII, and Launchkey Mini MK3… which isn’t the same as the SAMPLE start/end points… it still gets the job done! But…. you cannot map those functions to any generic midi controller. You have to use a controller that is supported by Ableton, via Control Surface scripts.

NUANCE and VICE (both from New Sonic Arts). Nope. Pretty interface, and several things can be midi-mapped, but not the start/end points. Why?

FPC by Image-Line (FL Studio). I don’t think this is possible. Correct me if I’m wrong.

GRACE by One Small Clue. Free sampler. Can’t map the sample start/end points. Annoying.

ADSR Sample Manager… I REALLY like this… asked them if they could midi-map sample start/end points… they said it would be implemented, but nothing yet.

RitMix by Soundbridge... so much potential here, squandered. Too much mouse-clicking. Gorgeous interface, but come on… more controller stuff, LESS mouse, please.

I’m too exhausted to finish this entry… I’ll update it later… but WHY is this function so blatantly ignored? Also, show me the WAVEFORM inside the plugin, please? Like Maschine, like Simpler, like Poise… like Geist 2 (but showing me GREYED-OUT areas, where I chopped it)?

More to come….






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