music, opinion and technology


frequently-asked questions about the Akai MPC1000

v2.0, updated 23 January 2006

added: various updates to reflect changes in MPC1000 OS v2.10
added: link to MPC1000 template for Cubase and Nuendo
note: MPC1000 OSv2.10 is now available from Akai Pro! Check out the Release Notes on there for the list of new features. Features once noted as missing are now included.

If you don’t use the MPC Forums, I highly recommend it, that is where most of the questions and answers in this FAQ came from. Names in italics belong to MPC Forums users who have contributed to this FAQ – many thanks!

storage: RAM, CompactFlash & USB

  1. What’s the general idea behind the CompactFlash (CF) card slot?
    The MPC1000 includes a CF reader for offline storage of Programs, Samples, Sequences and Songs, instead of a Zip or floppy drive. A CompactFlash (CF) card keeps data intact without power, and appears as a disk drive to the system it’s plugged in to.
    When the MPC1000 is attached to a PC or Mac with the USB cable, and “USB” is selected from the Load/Save page, you can access the inserted card as if it was attached to the computer directly.
  2. What are the advantages/disadvantages of CF?
    Advantages: CF cards have no moving parts, it takes a lot to damage one in everyday use.
    USB CF interfaces are now extremely cheap (
  3. What will happen if I remove the CF card while writing, or disconnect the USB cable while writing to the card or HDD?
    You can swap cards in and out at any time, but doing it while reading or writing is asking for trouble, so don’t. It’s a good policy to leave Load/Save mode before inserting or removing a card. In USB mode, always gracefully “eject” or “safely remove” the drive(s) at the PC before removing the cable. You could lose data: not just the data you write, but any data on the card or HDD, if the File Allocation Table (FAT) is corrupted. If you have a PC or Mac with a CF interface, you can run the normal disk checkers to fix the card format, otherwise, your only recourse is to reformat the card or drive in the MPC1000, losing all data that you don’t have backed up.
  4. Do I need to install a driver on my PC?
    Not on Windows ME/2000/XP, Mac OS 9 or OS X. The USB storage interface is a standard “USB Mass Storage Class” slave device that needs no 3rd-party driver. For Windows 98SE users the question is still unanswered, but the Microsoft Knowledge Base has useful updates and fixes.
  5. When I connect the USB cable to the PC and and select USB mode, the MPC1000 locks up. Is this right?
    It’s a safety thing: your PC needs exclusive access to the card, There can be no risk of anything else modifying the card while it’s in use, and you must disconnect cleanly before you can get your box back. (This is the rule with removable drives in general.) The result is that, while in USB mode, your MPC1000 is an expensive CF Card reader.
  6. Must I use the USB interface to access the card?
    No: if you have a PC or Mac with a CF Card reader, you’ll probably find it quicker and easier, most of the time, to swap cards in and out.
  7. Can I use the USB interface to send live MIDI to and from my PC?
    No: it’s only for the MPC1000 storage devices. It can’t carry MIDI data directly, but you can (of course) store MIDI files through it.
  8. Can I use the USB interface to attach a CD reader or writer?
    No: currently, the MPC1000 has no USB Master capability, it can only be a Slave to another device, typically a PC. This is a limitation of the Renesas SH3-DSP CPU i.e. it’s not possible that a firmware update will change this. In general, USB devices with the smaller B-type ports, like the MPC1000, are slave-only devices.
  9. Why is there a USB interface, then?
    The USB connectivity starts to make sense when you learn that there is space for a 2.5-inch hard disk drive inside the MPC1000. You use the USB interface to do mass dumps to and backups from the internal disk. It will look like any external USB HDD to the PC / Mac.
  10. I have a spare 2.5-inch disk lying around. Can I install it in my MPC1000 now?
    Yes, if you upgrade to OS v2.00 or later and add the Akai HDM10 adapter. This can be ordered from Akai Pro in the USA and from various suppliers in Europe e.g. Dolphin Music in the UK and
  11. What about SCSI? How do I read my Akai format CDs?
    It will take PC/Mac software to get round this, since the MPC1000 has no CD drive possibilities.
    Example: load your CD in Native Instruments Battery, then save the Battery KIT to disk. That exports WAV samples which can be converted (if required) and ported to the MPC1000.
  12. If I turn the MPC1000 off, do I lose data in RAM?
    Yes. It’s SDRAM, the same as PCs use, with no battery backup.
  13. Must I buy Akai’s EXM128 RAM upgrade?
    Officially, yes, of course. Unofficially, the situation is fluid: at the time of writing, several people have successfully used 144-pin PC133 SDRAM modules, with a 256MB giving a 128MB upgrade (and still saving money). Search the MPC Forum for details.


  1. I connected a turntable to the MPC1000, but anything I sample sounds weak, thin, scratchy, with no bass. What gives?
    The MPC1000 takes standard line level signals on the Record inputs, it has no RIAA turntable preamp. This kind of preamp is necessary to compensate for the “pre-emphasis” used when cutting vinyl masters: they cut bass to limit the movement of the cutting stylus.
    If your turntable doesn’t have a built-in preamp, you need an external one: most DJ mixers and many hi-fi amps have one on the “Phono” inputs, otherwise check the specs of your turntable, or see your dealer. This page has some technical background that explains why the preamp is needed: in short, the signal from the phono cartridge is weak and lacks bass, it needs boosting before it’s “line level”.

    • the Technics SL1200 series don’t have a RIAA pre-amp, you always need to go through Phono inputs on a DJ mixer or hi-fi amp, or separate preamp.
    • the Stanton SDR8-80 and Numark TTX1 not only have a built-in preamp and line-level out, they also have a Digital out which can (in theory) hook up to the MPC1000 for maximum vinyl fidelity.
  2. My sample recording stops after 10 seconds!
    That’s just the MPC1000’s default sample length, you can increase it on the Record page, up to the limit on available memory.
  3. How long can I sample for?
    Check the recording time by hitting Window on the Recording page: you use about 5 MB per minute at the MPC1000 standard rate, for Mono (10MB/min for Stereo).
  4. What’s the best way to sample guitars or voices?
    Because the MPC1000 accepts line-level signals and doesn’t include any kind of preamp, these kinds of signals work best with an external preamp. The Rec Gain control does allow you to amplify weaker signals, and the manual does talk about hooking up a microphone directly, but condenser microphones work best with a dedicated external preamp, or at least a decent mixer channel preamp.
    The same applies to guitars, but even more so: the whole debate about amps vs preamps vs modelling is too deep and wide to get into here. In short, the things you need to get a good guitar sound in the studio are the same things you need to sample a guitar properly – whatever those things are for you.
  5. Can I use Pitch Bend, Modulation, and other MIDI Continuous Controllers on samples?
    The MPC1000’s sample engine simply does not support that, by design. It isn’t like a general sampler, it is optimized for drums, so we suspect that Pitch Bend etc. are luxuries that probably use up too many CPU cycles.
    This is not to be confused with MPC1000 Sequencer support for CCs, it happily records all the CC messages it receives and plays them back to other MIDI devices.

WAV files

  1. What file formats does the MPC1000 support?
    WAV files, 16-bit, 44100 samples per second, mono or stereo.
  2. How can I convert from other formats to this?
    Your favorite WAV Editor should be able to do this kind of conversion.
  3. I don’t have a WAV editor!
    Audacity is an excellent general editor for Linux, Mac OS X and Windows, and it’s Open Source (meaning no charge).
    A useful free PC conversion tool is dbPowerAmp Music Converter, with optional plugins for many formats.
  4. I have a WAV file that won’t load, loads partly, or even crashes the MPC1000 – what now?
    We’ll assume you’ve checked it’s the correct format as per Q1:
    The WAV file format is modular, and WAV files saved by some applications contain extra “chunks” that can trip up other programs and hardware. If your WAV editor has a “save non-audio data” option, try deselecting that. Alternatively, try using dbPowerAmp (see Q3), to “convert” the sample to the same format, whch strips out extra chunks without changing the sound.
    The MPC1000 had some problems loading files saved by ProTools, even when saved in the correct sample format. MPC1000 OS 1.04 contains a fix for this.
    On the PC, you can use the RIFF File Viewer or WAV Properties Extension from Maxim Digital Audio to examine the Chunks in a WAV file.
    Of all the non-standard chunk types, only the “sampler” chunk is any use to the MPC1000, that’s where it stores the sample loop points (see Q5 in this section).
    thynctank says: This is the best free program available for batch converting huge numbers of files to the same sample rate/bit depth as well as automatically tuning your samples with various options, normalizing, and DC correction (phase removal).

  5. I created loop points in a WAV editor, but the MPC1000 doesn’t pick them up!
    This has been seen in Adobe Audition, formerly known as Cool Edit Pro: when you use its “Sampler” page to add loop points, it defaults to “one-shot” loop. Change this to “Sustain / Continuous”, then it works.
    Loop points are part of the “Non-Audio” data in a WAV, so you must have that option enabled in your editor when saving the WAV.
  6. A WAV file edited in Steinberg WaveLab has a click when transferred to the MPC1000.
    jocks says:

    if you’re planning to use Wavelab v4 to process your samples before exporting them to your mpc1k, here’s a tip to avoid ugly surprises!
    you’ll need to go to options\preferences\file and deactivate “create optimized audio file headers” otherwise you will get a click sound at the start. the helpfile on that settings page in wavelab even warns you that some gear behaves that way. another cause of click sound is often DC offset in start of a wave file. most serious audio editors do however have that tool integrated.

  7. Any problems with WAV file names?
    Two important things to remember:

    • Keep file names unique – since the names used in memory must be unique. This limitation sometimes comes in handy when working with Programs, see Tips & Tricks.
    • Don’t use spaces in the names of files you will be using with the MPC. Some of Akai’s own files appear to use spaces, but actually use underscore (_). You may get away with it, but some people have reported “directory error” messages when trying to load those files.

pads & MIDI

  1. How can I mix live pad / MIDI playing with sequences?
    The Program played by the Pads and from incoming MIDI is the one belonging to the Track selected in the main screen.
    If you are working from an external MIDI keyboard or pads, this is a good reason to assign Program Changes to any Programs you may want to use live, then you can select them remotely. (In Program Mode, select the Program name, then Window.)
  2. But in Song mode I can’t see what Track is selected!
    The active Track then is whatever you set before you entered Song mode, and you can’t change it from inside Song Mode. If you had Track 2 selected, then the pads and external MIDI will control whatever Program is on Track 2 in each Sequence of the Song. The following experiment will demonstrate what happens here:

    • Enable the Internal Memory Autoload, and restart the MPC1000. Track 01 is selected by default.
    • Open Song mode and select Song 04-Rock:
    • Each sequence in this Song uses a different drum kit, the one assigned to Track 01.
    • Use the cursor keys to step through each Sequence in the Song, and the drum kit triggered by the Pads changes immediately. This also happens when you play the Song.

    You can use this to your advantage: you can dedicate a track to “Live Pads & MIDI”, and assign the patches for the external devices, per Sequence, to this track. Make sure that track is selected before entering Song mode – even better, make it the default Track01 for simplicity. When the Song is playing, the settings and events for that track will control what sounds are triggered from the pads and MIDI keyboard:

    • MPC Program (or Off)
    • MIDI: Output Channel, Events (bank & program changes)

    The result is hands-free program changes when playing live with a Song.

  3. How do I control sound modules with the MPC1000 Pads and Sequencer?
    The key to this is the MIDI field of the selected sequence Track, on the Main page: this controls where you direct the MIDI output from that Track to. You can use this in combination with the Program field, so one Track can control both the MPC1000 sampler and/or an external synth or sampler. It also works for controlling other MIDI devices such as FX boxes, and you can embed Program and Control Changes in a sequence by recording them or using the Step Edit Insert command.
    As with MIDI, live pad hits are directed to the MPC1000 sampler and/or external MIDI according to the Program & MIDI settings of the selected Track.
  4. My sound module doesn’t play back sequences correctly, I get everything coming out using one sound!
    If you have a sequence that uses multiple sounds from one or more modules, each sound must be sent out on its own MIDI channel, there can be no overlap. Use both MIDI ports if possible, before you daisy-chain them from Thru ports on the devices.
    Your module needs to be Multitimbral, and while some work this way by default, some aren’t, and others need to be switched to the appropriate mode before they will accept MIDI data on more than one channel e.g Roland XV models – see their manual(s) about Performances.
    Example from my studio: the Kawai K5000S must be in “Multi” mode to be multitimbral: when I changed to Multi mode while recording MIDI to a track, I found that Bank Change 101/0 (MSB/LSB) will set Multi Mode, so now I don’t have to change modes manually.
  5. MIDI parts sound sloppy, the timing isn’t as tight as the MPC1000’s sequencer.
    MIDI is now over 20 years old, and while it’s good enough for most general applications, it is slow by modern standards, and the delay incurred by transmission can be audible when compared to the quick trigger time on the MPC1000’s internal sounds. If you have two sounds that must be perfectly synchronized, a MIDI link between them could make this unreliable, you may want to keep them both inside the MPC1000 as samples. (But be aware that, while the MPC1000’s sample engine is powerful, it has limits on simultaneous sample playback too. Your Mileage May Vary!)
    MIDI timing can suffer if it is overloaded, so be aware that some MIDI facilities like Aftertouch and Pitch / Modulation wheels can produce a lot of data, all of which will be recorded in the sequencer, taking up memory and using MIDI bandwidth. Try to stop it happening at source if you don’t need it.
  6. What’s the best way to use a keyboard synth together with the MPC1000?
    If you use a synth’s keyboard to play Programs, and also use the synth sounds, then there could be some confusion over exactly what sound is being played and what the sequence will sound like when played back. I’ve found that the following setup avoids the confusion:

    • Hook up your synth to the MPC1000, using both MIDI IN->OUT and MIDI OUT->IN cables.
    • On your keyboard synth, select Local Off (see your manual). This breaks the internal connection between the keyboard and the synth section, which then plays only what it receives on MIDI IN.
    • On the MPC1000, Mode: MIDI/SYNC, MIDI tab: set “Active Track Receive Channel” to ALL and “Soft Thru” to AS TRACK.

    After that, your keyboard will play the same sounds as the pads, i.e. whatever is set on the selected Track: a MPC1000 Program and/or whatever is receiving on the MIDI channel you set up. The synth won’t play a sound unless you have set up the correct MIDI channel to send it MIDI. When you record MIDI to a sequence, what you hear while playing will be what comes out when you play the sequence back straight away.

  7. What’s with the Pad – to – MIDI mapping? Why isn’t it in order from 35-98?
    It is based on the layout of the original Akai MPC60. You always have the option of remapping the MIDI in a blank program, and saving it for future use.
  8. How do I enter MIDI notes outside the range used by the Pads? When I try to use Step Edit, it always refers to Pads first, I can’t change the MIDI note directly.
    This is the default when Track type is set to Drum, it assumes you’re working with the internal Sampler which has a fixed 64-note range (35-98). Change the Track type to MIDI, then in Step Edit you can set MIDI notes from 0 – 127.
  9. How do I synchronize the MPC1000 to a computer-based sequencer?
    This is not a quick question to answer, and your software’s manual and help files will have much more detail, but here’s a short version:

    • Understand the differences between the two main types of synchronization:
      1. Tempo-based, using Bars and Beats. This is called MIDI Clock or MIDI Sync, often with Song Position Pointers (aka SPP, to indicate the current position in the song).The MIDI Sync Master sends out regular clock messages that the slave device must follow. The frequency of the messages follows the tempo of the master clock.
      2. Time-based, a.k.a. SMPTE or MIDI Time Code (MTC). The messages are time stamps that do not follow tempo at all. SMPTE stands for the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers, which tells you where SMPTE is used; SMPTE code is actually an audio signal that devices like video recorders read and follow, and MTC is (basically) a method of sending the same information over MIDI for sequencers to use.
    • Translating between the two types is not simple, requiring the computer to keep track of any tempo changes. Powerful sequencer packages such as Steinberg Nuendo & Cubase or Cakewalk Sonar integrate audio and MIDI and handle this function, which makes them useful as Masters in these setups. They use Time as the primary clock method, and can usually produce both kinds of sync at the same time as a Master. But asking one of these sequencers to follow a variable MIDI Clock is awkward, usually it isn’t possible. It varies by sequencer:
      • Cakewalk Sonar (Online Help): When MIDI Sync is the clock source, SONAR operates in response to incoming MIDI messages. In this case, SONAR is the slave, and an external MIDI device is the master. Note that audio playback is not supported when using MIDI Sync with SONAR as the slave.
      • Steinberg Cubase SX 3 Operations Manual says (pg 678): MIDI Clock is not suitable as a master sync source for an application like Cubase SX/SL. Therefore Cubase SX/SL will transmit MIDI Clock signals to other devices, but it will not receive MIDI Clock.
    • The Akai MPC1000 will send and receive MIDI Sync only, so it would be best to use it as the Slave in a setup with a powerful PC or Mac sequencer. Note: this does not mean you have to transfer any MIDI or audio from the MPC1000 to the computer sequencer, or generally change the way you work at all, it means only that the computer is the master for timing purposes. You can work on both sequencers separately if required, then sync them up for mixdown. If set up correctly, you can even use the MPC1000’s transport controls to control the combination of both sequencers.
  10. Where can I learn more about MIDI?
    A good place to start is the Tutorial on MIDI and Music Synthesis hosted by the MIDI Manufacturers Association. This site also has a MIDI Tutorial on using the MPC1000 with multitimbral synthesizers, which starts with the cabling and configuration of some common synths for this purpose, and has links to MIDI information on other sites..
  11. Can I integrate the MPC1000 into Cubase or Nuendo
    thynctank has kindly provided a MPC1000 template for these sequencers: here.


  1. How do I make a Pad Filter velocity-sensitive?
    The manual (pg 64) is thin on detail on how this function works. When you select a Filter’s Freq. field and hit Window, you can change the velocity sensitivity of the filter with the V>Freq setting. This is basically a factor that is added to the base frequency depending on the velocity of the hit. The formula can be written as Filter = Freq + V>Freq * (proportional velocity):

    • If Freq = 50 and V>Freq = 50, then for a full velocity hit the filter will be at 100, for a half-velocity hit the filter will be at 75, for a low-velocity hit the filter will be close to 50.

    The direction of the change is always upward, so a harder hit will always mean a higher filter frequency on all filter types. There appears to be no way to reverse the relationship, to make a harder hit lower the frequency.

  2. Can I change the slope of the Pad Filter?
    Setting the second Pad Filter to “Link” chains it to the first pad in series, giving an effective doubling of the filter slope (12db -> 24db)
  3. How do I play a sound monophonically?
    The Mono/Poly setting is for the individual Pad, it does not make the whole Program monophonic. To do that, add all the required Pads to the same Mute Group.
  4. Can I edit programs on a Mac or PC?


  1. How do I keep my FX settings?
    The MPC1000’s FX settings are saved as part of a “All Sequences and Songs” file, *.ALL. You can create and save up to 20 settings per Song.
  2. Can I load just the FX settings from a .ALL file?
    You can retrieve FX settings alone by starting to load a .ALL file, then hitting EFFECT (F2) on the confirmation screen. You can choose to load an individual effect setting, or select “0” to load all settings. You can give the effects settings more friendly names than “Effect01”, to make them easier to recognize when you try to load them.
  3. Why do I keep losing my FX Send settings?
    The FX Send settings are part of a Program and saved in a PGM file, not in a Sequence or Song. If you change any settings on the Mixer page, you should re-save that Program to keep the changes.
    This makes sense because multiple Programs can be loaded and in use at any time, while the two FX processors are shared by all Programs. This means that changing FX settings can affect the sound of more than one program in a Song, something to watch out for and a reason to hook up external effects for more flexibility.
    By analogy with a mixer: a Program is like a mixer input channel, with its own FX Send setting, but it doesn’t have its own FX processor. The MPC1000 doesn’t have Insert-type effects that you can use on one channel exclusively.
  4. How do I switch between internal FX programs?
    Use Step Edit to insert an Effect event with the number (1-20) of the Song’s effect setting that you want to load. Only do this in one Track per sequence, to avoid confusion.
  5. Why isn’t there a Delay effect?
    There is now, since the release of MPC1000 OS 2.0. It can work in a fixed-time mode, or synchronized to the tempo of the selected sequence. It is only selectable as FX2, not FX1.

general usage

  1. Does the MPC1000 have a Reset button?
    If it crashes or locks up, you must power it off and on again. If you just want to clear some memory space, use the Clear On Load function, which clears all programs and samples (where most of the memory goes): Load something small, but hit Clear before hitting Do It. This method doesn’t remove Sequences and Songs from memory.
  2. Clear On Load doesn’t clear Sequences and Songs from memory. How do I do that?
    Loading a new Project clears the entire memory when you load it, so you can create a clean Project file:

    • Clear the MPC1000 memory of all Programs, Purge Samples, delete all Sequences and Songs; or restart it without any Autoload and delete the blank default Program01;
    • Set up any default project-level settings you want, e.g for FX.
    • Save with the Save Entire Memory option, giving a suitable name, to a folder on the CF card.
    • This save two files: ALL_SEQS&SONGS.ALL, and a PRJ file linking to it. Load the PRJ file explicity to clear all memory. “Load All Files” will not do it, you must point at the PRJ file itself.

    Or use this one: . Unzip to a folder on your CF card, and load TabulaRasa.PRJ explicitly when you want a “clean slate”. (Tabula Rasa is Latin for … you figure it out.)

  3. Note Repeat doesn’t work.
    It only works during recording and playback. If the repeat is too fast or slow, change Time Correct (T.C.) value. From OS 2 it can be controlled by footswitch.
  4. The Tap Tempo button doubles as Note Repeat: when I try to use Note Repeat, I change the tempo!
    Keep a constant pressure on the button when using Note Repeat, avoid sudden movements that could be interpreted as taps.
    You can change the number of Taps required for Tap Tempo from 2 to 4: Mode=Other, the Misc page. This prevents false tempo changes from hitting the button twice by mistake.
  5. How does the MPC1000 handle samples with the same name on the flash disk?
    Not a problem as long as they’re in separate directories on disk. However, you can’t have two samples of the same name in memory at the same time, and the name used in memory is the same name used on disk. When loading, you can choose to “replace same files in memory”, “same files” meaning samples with the same name.
  6. How do I stop programs and sequences from Autoloading when I power the MPC1000 on?
    There are two separate Autoload options:

    • If the CF card has a folder named “Autoload”, all programs, samples, sequences and songs in it will be loaded when the MPC1000 is powered on with the card in. This works even if you change the Autoload setting as below. (The name is case-sensitive: Capital “A” only.)
      To stop this, delete or rename the Autoload folder: you can always download it from Akai International in the future if needed.
    • The Internal Memory, which is always available, even when no CF card is inserted. To stop this set loading, go to Load Mode, select the “Load From” line, and hit the Window key. You can overwrite this set by selecting Save Mode, changing the “Save To” setting to Internal Memory, and saving All Sequences And Songs. (Still, the internal set is good for quick demos to rubberneckers.)
      The CF Autoload takes precedence over the Internal Memory, it will load by itself, whether the Internal Memory Autoload is enabled or disabled.
  7. Where do I find the Time Stretch function, as on the MPC2000XL?
    As of MPC1000 OS 2, it can be found under the Trim menu. It is an “offline” sample-editing function, not available in real-time during playback.
    Most PC or Mac WAV editors have this function, including the free editor Audacity for PC, Mac OS X & Linux. The most useful Audacity function for this is called “Change Tempo”.

hidden features

  1. Pad Sensitivity Tweak:
    note: From MPC1000 OS 1.04 on, this feature is no longer hidden: the pad sensitivity can be modified at Mode / Other / Pad.

    • Select Mode / Other;
    • Press Shift and F4.
    • On the next screen, you can adjust the sensitivity, with a velocity bar graph showing the output. The general idea is that your hardest hits should give maximum velocity output.
  2. Owner Name:
    • Select Mode / Other.
    • Press F3 to reach the Footswitch screen, then F6.
    • What you enter here will be displayed as the MPC1000 boots.
  3. Credits Screen
    discovered by mpc3000

    • Select Mode / Other.
    • Select Misc
    • Hold SHIFT and sequentially press F5, F4, F6
  4. Pad / Slider Test
    discovered by mpc3000

    • Hold SHIFT and sequentially press D, C, B, A

tips & tricks

  1. How do I change the samples in a program?
    the easy way is to use BlueBox or the Editor for PC, or MPC Pad 187 for Mac;
    here’s another way – you are effectively creating a new program with the new samples in the old layout:

    • On PC, take an existing program and copy it to the directory where the new samples are. Rename the program as you like.
    • rename the new samples to match the names used by the samples in the program you just copied in.
    • transfer the lot to the MPC1000 and load.
    • the program should load and play correctly, but the sample names will be wrong
    • go to Trim mode, select the sample names and hit Window to rename them to any name you choose. This changes the sample name in the program and in memory.
    • save the program with the option to save existing samples
    • delete the wrongly-named samples.
  2. How can I use Steinberg/Propellerhead Recycle to chop samples for use in the MPC1000?
    Recycle 2 can save in Akai sample format (*.AKP): on PC, the Editor can load AKP format and assign the samples to pads automatically. You can then save the Program and samples, then transfer them and the Recycle MIDI file to the MPC1000. (After you load the MIDI file into a sequence, assign the loaded Program to Track 1 or that sequence, on the Main page.)
    The following is another method that works for the author:

    • I’m using Recycle 2 on PC, and I’ve selected a standard name to use for sending chopped beats to the MPC1000: export as “recycled”. This means that Recycle saves the WAVs as “recycled 001.wav”, “recycled 002.wav”, “recycled 003.wav”, and so on. It also saves a standard MIDI file, “recycled.mid”. All that goes in one folder.
    • Recycle saves the MIDI file it so it plays the chopped bits in the right order at the right time and tempo. The MIDI range it uses starts at 36 and goes up. So, to have the chopped pieces play back in order, we want the samples on MIDI notes 36 & up, in order. (Note that it doesn’t actually matter what Pads we use, as long as the right sample is on the right MIDI note – but it’s convenient if you can get the Pads in the right order too – to play the chopped bits by hand.
    • That meant creating a PGM that met those requirements: it has the pads set to use MIDI notes 36-98 in order from A01-D15. (D16 is where I assigned note 35, which is no use to us here, Recycle doesn’t use it.) Then I assigned “recycled 001”, “recycled 002”, “recycled 003″… all the way to “recycled 063” on pad D15.
    • Sounds laborious, right? Well, I don’t want to do it again, which is why I’ve standardized on the name “recycled” for WAVs I want to chop this way. If you want to take advantage, I’ve put the PGM up for download. To use it:
      • save recycled.PGM to a folder.
      • export your chopped WAVs and the MIDI file to the same folder, as “recycled” (as described above – 63 maximum). (Get the name wrong, the samples will not be assigned to pads automatically.)
      • send it to the MPC, load the whole folder (PGM and samples) automatically.
      • you still have to load the MIDI file manually, and assign it to a Sequence of your choice.
      • If all goes well, you can then go to the Main screen, select the sequence you used for the MIDI file, select the “recycled” PGM for Track 1, and … hit Play.
    • To rename the samples, use the MPC1000’s own methods, or one of the external editors (see Q1): that way, renaming a sample does not break the pad assignments. (You will need to rename all samples if you plan to use more than one Recycled sample set in a song – sample names must be unique.)

melodic multisampling

  1. A typical sampler asks you for the tuning of a sample and what range you want to play it over: the MPC1000 does not support ranges, so you have to program each individual MIDI note. Each Pad has a unique MIDI note number (1-1 mapping) assigned.
  2. You can load up to 4 samples for each of the 64 Pads (memory permitting), layered, or switched by velocity or the Q-Link slider “layer” function. This is irrespective of whether the samples are unique or you assign other samples with different parameters e.g. tuning.
  3. The default mappings of the 64 Pads to MIDI notes is not in Pad order from A01 to B16, but if you use a MIDI keyboard to select a pad to work on, you don’t need to worry about that. If you are going to use the pads to play tunes, however, you will need to think about your preferred sample layout. A blank PGM file with Pad-MIDI mappings in order can be found here.
  4. The default MIDI note mapping fits a 5-octave (61 note) keyboard perfectly, but you can’t program more than 64 notes in total per Program – this is a fundamental limitation, so you are effectively limited to a 5-octave range (if you expect all keys to be mapped to samples with no gaps).
  5. Another limitation: you can play only one Program at a time live via MIDI, the one selected on the Main page. (It’s not multi-timbral over external MIDI, but it is (of course) using the internal sequencer.) That means doing a Split on the master keyboard won’t get round this limitation, sadly.
  6. For most sounds, you will need to set each sample to play in Note On mode, so that the sample holds (if it has a loop), then stops when you release a key. The opposite is One Shot, the default, which is fine for drum sounds and certain keyboards e.g. harpsichord.
  7. In most cases, when assigning samples, I lay them out to minimize the required detuning. Some harmonically “simple” sound types sound good over wide detuning ranges, but others, especially voices, sound strange when detuned over even a few semitones. The following example shows how to lay out two samples over nine notes:
note sample tuning
B2 C3 -1.00
C3 C3 +0.00
C#3 C3 +1.00
D3 C3 +2.00
D#3 F3 -2.00
E3 F3 -1.00
F3 F3 +0.00
F#3 F3 +1.00
G3 F3 +2.00



If you have any suggestions for things to add to this FAQ, use the comments form below. If you do, please remember that this is a FAQ about the MPC1000 specifically, and not about mixing techniques, where to get samples, how to use your sequencer, or MIDI in general. If you can get a clear picture of what the MPC1000 is, what it can do, and what it can’t do, you can fit it in to your exact setup without needing instructions that fit exactly! 8)


Written by brian t

August 15, 2006 at 7:23 pm

5 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. i connected my mpc to my turntables.but the sound that comes from my turntables its pretty low,almost non audible….
    my mpc is connected to my old estereo ,,and i connected the cables from the turntables to my mpc 1000 directly.i didnt connect those cables wrong…i already even tried to plug in the cables in all the “holes”…what is the problem?

    thank you so much

    > faqmaster says:

    1)  this is almost certainly covered by “Sampling” Q1: I bet your turntable doesn’t have a phono preamp, so it’s not putting out the Line-level signal that the MPC works best with. Check out the specs of your turntable: if its output is straight from the stylus it needs a preamp, which you may be able to get at Radio Shack or any local electronics dealer


    August 22, 2006 at 12:23 am

  2. When I connect my powerbook to my mpc 1000 I get a messacge saying it cant recognise it. The MPC is telling it is connected though. Need help please. Thanks Rowan


    October 19, 2006 at 2:55 pm

  3. when I try to control vsts in nuendo 3 with the mpc1000 I cant get any audio. I can see the midi signal when I tap the pads but I cant get a sound. what do I need to set to make this work?


    October 30, 2006 at 3:59 pm

  4. OK, that does it: folks, this is not a technical support service! Take your queries to the MPC Forums, please. Since no-one has any interest in making a positive contribution to the FAQ, I am disabling comments on this and all my MPC1000 pages, with immediate effect.

    brian t

    October 30, 2006 at 5:34 pm

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: