We spoke to Gerrit from Retrokits, makers of some of the finest and niftiest midi utilities and hardware. He gave us an update on their latest product, the RK8, a MIDI sequencer/recorder. Initially designed as a modern replacement of the MMT8, they have added a load of new features, including the much-requested multi-track length. You have eight tracks that can each hold 16 MIDI channels, and you can apply transformations to each channel individually. They have also added real-time MIDI recording, meaning that pitch bend and mod wheel changes can be recorded in addition to steps. The firmware has been updated to version 2.0, which now includes Bluetooth support, allowing the use of wireless devices.
Gerrit also demonstrated how the RK8 can be used as a master brain, as you can have up to 100 parts, each with different beat lengths, which can be changed seamlessly. You can mute and unmute parts, play with build-ups, and transpositions while playing parts. Gerrit showed us how it can be used in a performance and even connected it to an OP-Z, which received MIDI signals from the RK8. The RK8 can also send out DIN sync signals, allowing it to sync with older devices.
RK-8 Price: 359 Euros. RK-8 with wood panels price: 409 Euros
New UI, devices and tools
Quirky Analog FPGA hybrid synthesizer
Bitwig 5.1, Pigtronix Cosmosis
Cheap as chips too