Sampler 16 bit

Bob Katz Leave a Comment

Hi Bob,

I m a beginner in electronic music production.

I have an akai mpc 1000 16 bit sampler and sequencer and I wont to use it for recording and sequencing and after use a computer as a audio recorder and for mixing.

I m trying to sample some old drum machines, synth and noises and I notice a loss in definition, deepness and details

as the sampler has a spidif in/out would be a good thing to buy some external a/d d/a converters and a dedicate line preamp?


Dear Sampler:

Even though your sampler has an SPDIF input, you won’t be getting the best resolution because it’s limited to 16-bit. I think these days, you should sample even the old drum machines with a good ADC at a minimum of 24-bit 96 kHz stereo into a sampler that can take it. There are arguments as to why you should not need that much, but I think it’s better to have sufficient or better resolution than to skimp and later discover you needed more. Even those who transfer classic 78 RPM discs which may have no information above 10 kHz are transferring at 2496. That way you have at least sufficient resolution, plus the cumulative losses along the rest of the way will be less. 

If your drum machine or “classic sampled source” has a digital output, you can take it in via spdif at the sample rate of the original source, then upsample it to 3296 for further processing and work. But be sure to compare it with the analog out of the same sampled source (or drum machine) captured through your 2496 ADC because maybe the “authentic” tone or character of that analog source is better than what comes from the digital output. In other words, the DAC in the drum machine forms part of its sound, even if it’s technically inferior to its digital output.

This is similar to the guitar amp argument, because an electric guitarist’s amp and speaker form part of his sound, as does the room he likes to play in! Capture it all, manipulate and choose later. Don’t skimp in the capture stage.
Hope this helps,


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