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Arturia SparkLE - Hardware Controller and Software Drum Machine

You Pay: $249.00
Product Highlights
  • 8-Pad Mini Controller
  • Spark Software
  • 3 Sound Engines
  • Vintage Drum Machines
  • Acoustic and Electronic Kits
  • Standalone, Audio Units, RTAS, VST
  • Mac OS X
  • Windows XP/Vista/7/8

SparkLE is a hybrid instrument from Arturia that combines the sounds, work flow and creative tools of the Spark Engine software with a hardware controller. It takes the best elements from a wide variety of vintage analog drum machines, sample based beat boxes and physical modeling, and delivers a modern beat station with synthesis and expressive control.

The package integrates classic "TR"-style step sequencing with real-time beat making. Sixteen sequencer buttons allow for quick sequencing while acting as a visual reference. Patterns can have up to sixty-four steps. Or rhythms can be recorded in real-time using the two banks of eight velocity and pressure sensitive backlit pads, either quantized or free form.

The touch-sensitive XY Pad offers real-time performance effects for transforming beats. A global filter allows for processing an entire mix through an 8-mode filter. The Slicer provides beat slicing, reverse playback, deep Tape drop effects, Strobe, beat sync pans, bit crushers, and more. An advanced Looper acts on the pattern position itself, and allows repeating sections of a pattern at the press of a button.

Three assignable encoders work with the currently selected sound, controlling functions like pitch, instrument filter cutoff and resonance, insert effect parameters, as well as the other synthesis parameters in each engine. The divide and move functions allow for setting the size and position of the loop within a pattern, and shifting these in real-time helps create new and interesting beats.

The software mixer provides a familiar interface for controlling the level, pan, insert effects and sends of instruments. Each of these parameters can be automated in the software or controlled via the assignable encoders on the controller. Each track of the step sequencer has fifteen parameters per instrument that can be automated plus full automation of all the insert effects parameters for that instrument. Fourteen digital effects provide further sonic manipulation.

It is a simple matter to organize all the newly created patterns into a song. The song mode allows for chaining patterns in any order. Simply enter song mode, and drag and drop the patterns required, one by one. For further editing, the usual copy, paste, insert, and delete functions allow more detailed sculpting.

Hardware Controller
  • Two banks of eight pads, backlit and velocity and pressure sensitive
  • Real-time programming from the pads
  • User assignable encoders
  • Touch-sensitive FX pad
  • Mode selector - Bank, Pattern, Seq, Tune
  • Looper Divide/Move function
  • Classic "TR style" programming
  • MIDI mode for use as a controller with any software
  • Small, portable, solid construction
  • USB input
  • Bus powered, class compliant
  • Kensington Lock
  • Protective travel sleeve
Spark Software
  • Full-featured Spark software
  • Three synthesis engines - virtual analog, physical modeling, sample playback
  • Library of over 1,500 instruments and over 100 kits expandable with Arturia add-ons
  • FX Pad with 8-mode filter, tape, reverse, strobe, bit crusher, pan, mix, roller and latch mode
  • Advanced Loop mode with divide and move functions
  • Sixteen-track mixer
  • Fourteen effects including multi-band compressor, reverb, sub generator, destroyer, bit crusher, multi-band EQ, chorus, delay, distortion, phaser, plate reverb, flanger, space pan and limiter
  • Import REX and Standard MIDI files
  • Export of patterns via drag and drop
  • Export Standard MIDI files or render audio as WAV files of individual patterns
  • Export full project files to share with other SparkLE users
  • MIDI Control Center software for remapping all buttons, knobs and pads
  • Templates for using SparkLE as a controller for Ableton Live and Reason
  • Sixteen assignable outputs within the host software
  • Functions standalone or as an Audio Units, RTAS or VST plug-in
Modeled Electronic Drum Machines
  • Roland TR-808
  • Roland TR-909
  • Roland TR-707
  • Roland TR-606
  • EMU Drumulator
  • LinnDrum
  • Oberheim DMX
  • Korg KPR 77
  • Sequential Circuits Drumtraks
  • Simmons SDS-V
  • Roland CR78/Acetone Rhythm Ace
  • Korg DDM-110
  • Korg DDM-220
  • Yamaha RX5
  • Casio RZ1
  • Linn 9000
System Requirements Mac
2 GHz Intel CPU (multi-core required)
OS X 10.5 or higher
2 GB RAM
2 GB available hard drive space
Internet connection required for product authorization

PC
2 GHz CPU (multi-core required)
Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8
2 GB RAM
2 GB available hard drive space
Internet connection required for product authorization
Dimensions (WxDxH) 11.2 x 6.7 x 0.7" (284 x 171 x 17 mm)
Weight 2.2 lb (1 kg)
Arturia SparkLE - Hardware Controller and Software Drum Machine
  • USB Cable
  • Spark Software
  • Neoprene Slipcase
  • One (1) Year Warranty on Hardware

  • Included Free

    REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    ArturiaSparkLE - Hardware Controller and Software Drum Machine
     
    2.8

    (based on 4 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (0)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (2)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (0)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (1)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (1)

    50%

    of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

    Pros

      Cons

        Best Uses

            • Primary use:
            • Business (3)
            • Computer Platform:
            • Mac (3)

          Reviewed by 4 customers

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          Displaying reviews 1-4

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          (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          This will have you composing music fast!

          By Billy Burnsides

          from Seattle, WA

          About Me Music Composer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Easy To Collaborate Across Programs
          • Easy to use

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Multimedia
            • Music production

            Comments about Arturia SparkLE - Hardware Controller and Software Drum Machine:

            This is a great production tool. You can create a sweet drum track in minutes. I would recommend this to any Composer beginner or professional.

            • Primary use:
            • Personal
            • Computer Platform:
            • Mac

            Share this review

            (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            1.0

            Be afraid, be very afraid

            By HarryOOO

            from Los Angeles

            About Me Professional Musiciancom

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

              Cons

              • Freezes or Crashes

              Best Uses

                Comments about Arturia SparkLE - Hardware Controller and Software Drum Machine:

                B and H was kind enough to exchange an Akai MPX8 for this unit. By the way, none of this is B and H's fault. They're terrific. The Akai was not capable of doing what I needed. In theory, the SparkLE should be everything I need to create great sounding drums in Sonar X3. I opened the box, installed the software...it worked great...for 30 minutes, while I ran thru the sounds. Then I tried to make it work with Sonar. I ran Sonar, it saw the unit...I figured I'm good. I closed Sonar to go back to checking out the sounds, grooves, etc. I get an error message saying "Connection Failed". I reboot, restart, unplug, re-plug...all the things one does when these things happen. I even read the manual. It now sits on my desk as a nicely designed paperweight. Nothing I can do seems to allow the unit to connect to the software. But the worst part is that Arturia has, it seems, the lousiest tech-support in the business. There is no phone number, there is only email, and when you start checking, you find many other people that are having the same connection issue since 2013. One would think they would fix it by now. There are many complaints about response times (slow or none) and I can find no one that thinks their support is any good. The forums seem to be the place to look for information, but there are others who complain about being frozen out of them. Caveat Emptor...

                • Primary use:
                • Business
                • Computer Platform:
                • PC

                Share this review

                (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                2.0

                Great Potential, Not Fully Developed

                By Josh

                from Wichita, KS

                About Me Composer And Musician

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Easy to use
                • Fun To Use If It Works

                Cons

                • Freezes Or Crashes Often
                • Frustrating To Use
                • Not Suitable For Live Use

                Best Uses

                • Writing Drum Loops

                Comments about Arturia SparkLE - Hardware Controller and Software Drum Machine:

                This is a fun controller to use, but I wouldn't ever recommend it to anyone in a live setting. So far, I haven't had an experience where I played with the controller for more than 20 minutes without running into a random error or bug in their software. I've had it load random bass drums to my current kit without me touching the controller, I've had the controller itself crash and stop responding/sending input, the buttons will occasionally do whatever they want, and can't be fixed without restarting the software, and I've had the software just full on crash and restart itself. The USB port feels too shallow to securely hold a cable, but besides that the quality of the build is really nice. If you like what they're advertising, I'd recommend checking back in a year or two to see if they've finished debugging their software first. As this stands, I'm giving Arturia Support a chance to fix it before I try to return it to save up for an Ableton Push.

                • Primary use:
                • Business
                • Computer Platform:
                • Mac

                Share this review

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                brilliant interface and software...

                By tvpnyc

                from new york, ny

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Easy to Customize
                • Easy to Navigate
                • Versatile

                Cons

                • Limited Library

                Best Uses

                  Comments about Arturia SparkLE - Hardware Controller and Software Drum Machine:

                  if you're not into NI's Maschine— and i'm one— this is a brilliant interface and piece of software. it's intuitive and feels more "legit" to me. i wish the sound library was larger—the only reason that i gave it 4 instead of 5 stars.

                  • Primary use:
                  • Business
                  • Computer Platform:
                  • Mac

                  Share this review

                  Authorization

                  A USB dongle can be used to hold your authorization of this software.

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