Yamaha gets in the groove with compact all-in-one music machine
The world's largest music gear expo is set to open its doors next week, and Yamaha has popped up early with a groove machine called the Seqtrak that could have jumped straight out of Teenage Engineering's design playbook.
Over the past couple of years, Sweden's Teenage Engineering has released some frankly gorgeous music and audio gear, including the TX-6 mixer, TX-7 field recorder and an updated "field" version of its iconic OP-1 portable groovebox. Yamaha's Seqtrak wouldn't look out of place in this lineup.
The "all-in-one music creation station" puts software synthesizers, a step sequencer, a drum machine and a sampler in one tasty case. The battery-powered groove maker also comes with a built-in speaker and a microphone, and works with a companion mobile app that caters for deep-dive sound creation.
The interface up top is divided into three sections, starting with a drum machine to the left that rocks seven tracks ready to be filled up with sounds from the onboard sample library, or custom loads from the app. Each track can host up to six patterns, selected by turning the appropriate knob.
The smaller middle segment is home to two Advanced Wave Memory synths with 128-voice polyphony each for "authentic sounds like pianos, strings, and guitars" plus a four-operator FM synth engine offering "stunning synth pads, leads, and FM electric pianos." There's an onboard sampler too, which can re-sample internally or grab sounds using the microphone, from an external source, through USB or over Wi-Fi.
Sounds can be massaged via the sound design section to the right, controlling such things as pitch, volume, attack, decay and more. Numerous effects are available, including reverb and delay, plus there are funky touch-enabled sliders for adjusting certain parameters. The unit also sports a step sequencer for "intuitive and seamless composition, arrangement, and playback of tracks."
"Every musician has experienced getting a musical idea outside of their music-making space," said Yamaha's Nate Tschetter. "Seqtrak's compact size allows those ideas to be recorded and developed further. Plus, the depth of the Seqtrak app adds an entire dimension for turning those ideas into completed music and video."
The Seqtrak carries a suggested retail price of US$599, which is much less of a boutique figure than you'd need to shell out for Teenage Engineering's nearest offering. The video below has more.
The 2024 NAMM Show starts from January 25 at the Anaheim Convention Center in California, where Yamaha will be showcasing its latest developments.
Product page: Yamaha Seqtrak