Yamaha Intros SEQTRAK Music Creation Station


Yamaha Seqtrak is an all-in-one synth, drum machine, sampler and sequencer that could be an affordable rival to Teenage Engineering’s OP-1

In one of the most exciting gear announcements made in the lead-up to NAMM 2024 so far, Yamaha today has unveiled a new product that looks like it could be one of the stars of this year’s show.

Could this be the coolest piece of music-making gear to be unveiled at NAMM 2024?

Seqtrak is described by Yamaha as a “standalone music production studio” and comprises a step sequencer, drum machine, sampler and several software synths, designed for composing and performing electronic music anywhere. The portable device is equipped with a microphone, speaker and rechargeable battery, along with a companion app that allows the user to dive into detailed sound editing.

Seqtrak’s interface is divided into three sections; on the left we have drums, in the middle is the synth and sampler, and the coloured section on the right handles sound design and effects. The drum section is made up of seven tracks (kick, snare, clap, two hi-hats and two percussion sounds) that can be loaded up with sounds from Seqtrak’s sample library, which contains 2000 sounds in total, or with the user’s own samples through the Seqtrak app.

Seqtrak builds on Yamaha’s strengths. The device offers three polyphonic digital synth engines; two of these make use of Yamaha’s AWM2 (Advanced Wave Memory) technology, which is a sample-based subtractive synth engine found in a number of other Yamaha products. The other, named DX, is a four-operator FM synth engine based on the sounds of the classic Yamaha DX7 synthesizer.

Each of the synths can switch between mono, poly and chord modes and melodies can be played in via Seqtrak’s seven keys, which can be assigned to customizable scales. The device’s step sequencer can also be used as a chromatic keyboard. The sequencer itself holds six patterns per track of up to 128 steps that can be dialled in through the 16 steps on Seqtrak’s interface.

Seqtrak’s sampler can record audio via the built-in microphone or the stereo mini-jack input, resample internally, or play back samples loaded in via the Wi-Fi and USB-C connections. Sounds can be processed through an array of effects that includes 12 types of reverb, 9 types of delay, modulation, distortion and compression, a 5-band master EQ and low-pass and high-pass filters on each track.

Though it’s described as a standalone music-making device, Seqtrak notably lacks a screen, and detailed sound editing will be easier to access through the Seqtrak companion app, which runs on macOS, Windows, iOS and Android. The app also offers a visualizer which turns your tracks into graphics that respond to the music; we can’t help but note a similarity to Teenage Engineering’s OP-Z here, which bears more than a passing resemblance to Seqtrak in its sleek and minimalist design.

You can get a full overview of SEQTRAK via the video playlist, embedded above.

Seqtrak is available in two colour schemes, grey and black and a striking white and orange. In addition to the audio in and USB-C port, it’s equipped with a headphone out, MIDI in/out and Bluetooth MIDI for linking up with other gear and mobile devices.


Features:

  • All-in-one mobile solution: Drums. Synths. Sound design. Sequencing. All included. With an array of features, all loaded in a compact, lightweight design, SEQTRAK allows you to start producing right away – no matter where you are.
  • Fast workflow: SEQTRAK makes capturing ideas simple with a clear 3-part user interface and real-time, hands-on controls. You’ll produce your music without menu-diving or waiting for boot times.
  • Deep sound library: SEQTRAK’s extensive library contains over 2,000 presets. You’ll find a vast collection of professionally crafted sounds – from rich pianos, to shimmering synths and thundering drums.
  • Onboard sampling: Capture your own unique sound samples effortlessly. SEQTRAK’s sampler offers seven sound slots and a variety of effects, allowing you to shape and transform your samples with ease. Say a phrase, tap a spoon, or record your favorite pet – then customize to create polished Tracks – all in high-quality 44.1 kHz/16-bit format.
  • Portable: With its compact size, lightweight design, built-in speaker and microphone, as well as a rechargeable battery, you can take SEQTRAK anywhere.
  • Sound engines & effects: Double your creative potential with two versatile sound engines. AWM2 (Advanced Wave Memory 2) boasts an impressive 128-note polyphony and specializes in authentic sounds like pianos, strings, and guitars, while the four-operator FM engine produces stunning synth pads, leads, FM electric pianos, and more. Additionally, SEQTRAK includes powerful effects.
  • Sequencer: SEQTRAK’s advanced Sequencer allows for intuitive and seamless composition, arrangement, and playback of musical Tracks. With its user-friendly interface, you can easily navigate and control various parameters, such as tempo, swing, and track settings.
  • Sound editing: Inside the included SEQTRAK app you’ll find an intuitive graphic user interface that lets you dive into each Track and shape your sounds with precision. Editing includes a comprehensive set of functions, including envelopes, filters, and effect manipulation, enabling you to refine your compositions with meticulous detail.

Connectivity:

  • Bluetooth MIDI: Connect wirelessly to the SEQTRAK App & Visualizer, enhancing convenience and mobility.
  • Wi-Fi: Transfer WAV samples wirelessly, eliminating the need for cables.
  • MIDI In/Out: Connect to other hardware synths, MIDI controllers, or a computer; expanding your sound options and enabling integration with external devices.
  • USB-C: Establish a single cable connection for MIDI and stereo audio to a computer simplifying setup and streamlining workflow.
  • AUX In: Connect to drum machines, synths, and other external sources, expanding and diversifying your sound.

SEQTRAK Performance Videos:

At $599, Seqtrak should make a worthy challenger to similarly priced devices such as Elektron’s Digitakt and Digitone that offer an abundance of music-making potential in a portable package, and an affordable rival to more expensive grooveboxes like the Teenage Engineering OP-1 field.

Find out more on Yamaha website.

 

 

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