I've been a producer for the better part of a decade, and I'm always looking out for better hands-on ways to chop samples and make beats. Native Instruments Maschine was exactly what I was missing. I mostly use it to create sounds in standalone mode, but it's also great as a plug-in in Pro Tools. The Komplete Select bundle comes with a lot of great sounds, and I use the included Massive synth on virtually all of my productions.
Not just for beat makers
I picked this up just because I could and I thought it would be good to explore alternative writing methods. I am a studio only guy at this point so I hesitated to pick up a tool that appeared to be a performance oriented tool. Little did I know what a workflow changer this was.
I have always worked in pretty standard DAWs, particularly Sonar. My problem was that I really had a difficult time separating the exercise of writing from the exercise of mixing. It wasn't that I couldn't. I was just that I didn't because I was using the same tool for both.
Enter Maschine. With this beast, I can completely concentrate on the writing activity. Having an "instrument" really gets me immersed in writing. When I get the track to a place where I am done with the writing, I export the audio at the sound level, pull it into Sonar and mix away. If I need to make a change a part, I just load up Maschine 2, make the change, export again, and just replace the audio in the corresponding track in Sonar. Quick and easy.
I am even writing cinematic orchestral tracks with Maschine. I like it so much that I ordered a Mikro for the road. (Some will tell you that this is fine in a backpack but I travel internationally and the Mikro makes more sense after lugging this a couple of times.
Highly recommended bit of kit.
The Future is Now
Have been hemming and hawing over whether (or really when) to buy a workstation as I've been missing the immediacy of a hardware interface where everything jives from the get-go. I had that back in the day with my beloved and dearly missed Motif ES6 and I was so productive because of it. so here I am, wanting to get the MOXF6 or, due to the price drop, maybe a Korg Krome 61...but i just can't stand the idea of really just buying the keyboard for hardware control (primarily for the sequencer with an on-the-fly performance scenario in mind) with all those ROMpler sounds...sorry, just NOT interested in the multilayered pianos, wurlies, b-3s, horns...you get the idea. and here i have AMAZING software synths with exotic synthesis methods & flexibility yet not as immediate or intimate to control, to play as an extension of myself...
well, after eyeballing this Machine thing for a while now (because I have really not connected with NI the way I have with my primary softsynth arsenal) I went ahead and committed to Maschine mk2...BEST THING I HAVE DONE! A beast, highest quality build/ergonomics, actually a killer value if you consider it comes with the acclaimed Massive amongst the other extras.
Now I am back to a level of productivity, interaction, inspiration not really seen since my beloved Motif ES6 days. The NI Maschine software/hardware integration and coalesance IS the future...it is realized HERE & NOW! The Maschine 2.2 pattern sequencing software is GREAT standalone not to mention working without a hitch within my DAW love Logic Pro X!
I tell you what, I did the e-voucher thing and picked up one of their extension packs for Maschine: worth it.
And now, I must admit, Maschine has been THAT convincing to me, THAT satisfying as they have got me hooked and they know it...it's a gateway drug for wanting Komplete...in due time once i pay off the Maschine purchase (my buddy thought it best to hold off on Komplete so my wife doesn't murder me...tee hee hee...he's looking out for my well-being, that's what friends are for). Actually, I am a good friend to him too...because of me, he got the Maschine Studio before I got my Maschine mk2. i was SO impressed by the afore mentioned build quality and workflow fluidity and it sold me right then and there...I was like "Cry many...totally insane and worth every penny...I need one now"
Bottom Line after my banter: GET IT NOW if you have been going back and forth about it...you will NOT regret it for a second. dude, seriously, get it now
it s powerfull . and easy to use after u learn , just love it.....
My dj had the first generation mpc. and i also planned on buying the mpc but when i saw the native maschine and how easy and fast it was to make beat i decided to get it . i am recording my alblum and i know my native mashine will rock it......music for life....
sweetwater keep the good work , thanks to helping my dream to be on top
More than I expected
A brief background for those of you who might be in a similar situation and looking for a better solution. Iím not a drummer but I need drum tracks. The drummers I know wonít go near anything digital (yeah, I know, ďreal drums are made out of real woodí). Iíve tried my hand at programming drum machines and VSTi virtual drum machines, bought a MIDI pad controller - but I was never able to program patterns that were something I would call Ďinspiringí. I ended up going with loops, which are time consuming to find the right loop and the cost starts getting out of hand when you have to buy a new percussion-loops CD for every new song.
With that history, I was apprehensive about buying Maschine. I really didnít expect to do much better than what I had accomplished in the past, but the abundance of Maschine videos on YouTube looked enticing. I considered going the cheaper route with the Mikro, but in the end, I bought Maschine and Iím glad I did.
Maschine sounds fabulous and has loads of tweakable parameters and FX built in. Thereís enough included MIDI patterns that Iím able to copy \ paste \ tap some seriously tight grooves. Iím beyond impressed. I didnít think I would be able to dial in the sound and decent grooves so quickly. Yes, Iím finally programming (copy and tap actually) some decent grooves. Additionally, Maschine integrates with Cubase as a VSTi, complete with the Maschine sequencer. While you would normally think ďwhy would I need a sequencer within my sequencer?Ē The Maschine VST window shows available patterns, kits and FX all in one window. It works out rather nicely.
What I didnít know about is that the Maschine hardware also functions as a general MIDI controller for Kong, Battery, Superior Drummer, etc. meaning that the selection of kits at my disposal is simply unbelievable. Lastly, I can load samples of chords on different pads and because I think musically in terms of a piano keyboard, I end up composing chord progressions that I normally wouldnít come up with.
More Than Meets the Eye!
Maschine is more than you expect. It runs within a DAW in a typical instrument channel and simultaneously offers MIDI control over the sequencer. If so desired a single pad from one of the groups can be controlled by a keyboard meaning that Maschine can be the central hub connecting you with the DAW while master controlling your VST instruments. The possibilities are so endless that I'm left rethinking how to best use it!!! That's a fun place to be.
The workflow between the controller and software are seem less. And with over 6GB of sounds the possibilities are absolutely endless. The effects are amazing as is the guitar rig. I have begun working on some projects that I can already see myself and colleague playing live. I am seriously impressed.
Again, Sweetwater will keep getting my biz, they are consummate professionals.
A Maschine Believer
I have been using Logic Pro with a controller and my Roland MC-909 for Years. Maschine has replaced them all as my go to Music Tool.
The sounds its comes with are Powerful and Clean. The controller is laid out perfectly in my opinion. The work flow is easy to follow. The pads feel Fabulous and Massive is Magnificent and FREE. Maschine is a musical Beast :-)
Blisters on me fingers!
First things first. I'd like to say that for anyone that has doubts about buying from Sweetwater...shut it. Their customer service is extraordinary!
Now for the review: This is a slight step up from the MK1 that I sold to get the new MK2 unit. White is nice if nothing else different however mine had some manufacturer blemishes of which "Team Awesome" were kind enough to replace. Performance: it does feel more responsive than the previous generation; the color coding helps with organization and performance with Ableton Live. I actually like the large multi-knob. Build: feels more substantial than the MK1; the custom plates are nice for a cosmetic touch. Software: a big improvement since v. 1.2, still some work to be done but you can definitely get your ideas out. The library can be a pain in the arse, it just need a little finesse with mapping. For VSTs you can go wrong pairing up with Komplete. By the way, use the voucher and get yourself an expansion pack.
All in all, I'm very satisfied. I've been practicing more often as I treat it like playing a game of Simon (if anyone remembers the kid game). If you're on the fence. One suggestion, get yourself a small factor midi keyboard such as Arturia's MiniLab which will be me next purchase.
-Thanks again Sweetwater & "Team Awesome"
What a power house!!!
I love synths and musical "toys" if you will, and this is like all of it rolled into one big happy interface. Easy to use after a short while of "whats this do?" and very easy setup. Midi out for keys is great and the pads feel amazing. I havent had it for too long but for the short while I have I must say Im blown away. WARNING: You WILL want to buy software for it once you acclimate yourself to it so get ready to drop some cash on this virtual addiction. Lastly if you have an iPhone, the iMaschine is 4.99 and is a %$#&ing powerhouse of an app that also works seamlessly with Maschine.
Nice Rainbow lights if you
Native Instruments has created a great and welcomed groove machine,, and have opened the door to hybrid music equipment. Combined with Native Instruments Komplete 8 it is a full package, without komplete is like having a cake without the icing, they go hand in hand. The Maschine
Hardware is decent but lacks sliders which I feel would have been nice, or more rotary knobs The interface browser is awesome, the sequencer work flow really needs to be revamped, its not my or many producers way of building a song. I know if Native Instruments would have combined Kore and Maschine as a standalone/ hybrid device with a better interface, more rotary knobs and a better sequencer they could have really taken over the market hands down.
Changed My Workflow for the good!
I am late on the Maschine bandwagon but I am so glad I waited this long and got the Mk2. I wanted to use the unit for a month before I wrote the review to give it an full go.
To be honest, getting used to the workflow took a minute, but after thorough investigation of the manual, online videos and set-up guides for both Logic and Ableton Live, I have to say it's working better than I ever imagined.
Being a former studio engineer, I was forced to work with the MPC line for many years. This blows the MPC away as far as ease of use and getting something useful in minutes. The color pads are bright and very responsive to even the slightest touch. I don't miss having to look at my laptop constantly to see what's going on in a session. (Almost) every feature is available via the controller eliminating the computer screen. It is annoying that I have to use my laptop as a dongle now, but, Ce La Vie.
Integration with my DAWs is seamless and painless. One word on Ableton Live on Mac - your CPU will jump up to 70-80% (a known issue). The seamless integration with all NI products is also a HUGE plus and having every parameter available on the screen is fantastic. I literally have not opened an NI GUI in weeks!
Don't forget that this is also an amazing MIDI controller on it's own too and comes with templates for popular DAWs and Plugins. Again, great integration.
I can literally go on for days... Get it. You won't be disappointed!
Ultimate is Rock Love it
Machine is Machine no one come closer.I wish i purchase earlier.
MASCHINE SIMPLY WORKS
Ive been using hardware since 1983 and have owned some killer synths, drum machines, and samplers. I have always questioned the use of softsynths due to the confusing hardware requirements, longevity of the computer and just dumping a whole bunch of money into software which will be useless once the computer breaks.
Well, here I am at the recommendation of my Sweetwater salesman, (Greg Savino), with the Maschine MK II. The loading of the software was so easy that a dumb a_s like me loaded and was playing in approx. 10 minutes.
The Maschine hardware is very well built and it is like using a workstation rather than software. I'm basically doing everything from choosing sounds, sampling, and sequencing write out of the box using the Maschine itself, "not the mouse".
The sounds and drum patterns are awesome and very eassy to manipulate. The layout of the software is very easy to understand. By the way, I should tell you that I no longer use Cubase as my sequencer, I am currently using the Maschine Software as my DAW and understanding the parameters so much better than Cubase or Acid Pro 7.
In conclusion I would like to thank Greg Savino for recommending the Maschine MKII and just go out and buy the product to see for yourself. I can not say enough good about the Maschine..
Buy one now.