Interacting with samplers

Samplers are amazing.

The ability to record an existing sound, riff or loop and use it in your own work changed the music industry forever. That gift also introduced a myriad of other problems; technical as well as legal, but for now, we will focus on only the good stuff and interact with some cool things.

Since I don't own a iOS device, I could only try the Sampulator.

Here are my thoughts about it..

The Good

Sound: the sample quality is superb. The small progressions and chords available are fresh and interesting, and give you a strong block to build with.

Interface: the interface is clean, concise and functional. Sounds are organized according to their type. Controls are easily accesible, and the interactions are very simple.

Save/load: you can save your session and load a few example ones – they are actually pretty good.

The Bad

Precision: when recording, it's quite tricky to add the sample you want to trigger exactly in the subdivision that you want it to.

Variety: as I said, the samples are very good, but they are very hiphop/rap oriented. You eventually hit a wall and creating more diverse loops becomes impossible.

Key learnings

Inspiration: I originally wanted to create some sort of "city scrambler" (city noise sampler tool) for my upcoming Sampler assignment, but after interacting with a regular sample player and recorder, I kinda want to try something else.

Samples themselves are important: the quality of the samples can determine how good of a composition you can make.

Sound compatibility: sounds have to match each other in some way so that when you add a bunch of them, something listenable can come out.