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Billed as a hybrid drum machine, Arturia’s SparkLE blends the conventional interface of an old-school drum machine, complete with TR-style step-input buttons, with a capable software instrument.
This latest version houses a powerful sound engine fusing analogue and physical modeling with samples of electronic kits, acoustic drums and user sample import capability to a step sequencer driven by eight velocity/ pressure sensitive pads.
Said pads have 64 writeable patterns each with 64 steps available over four banks that can be chained to form arrangements in a similar way to an MPC or Maschine.
The hardware controller has been stripped down, aimed at travelling producers, live performers and those low on studio space.The buttons and eight square trigger pads are made of translucent rubber, feel good and are backlit just like the MPC studio and DSI Tempest.
Overall, a feeling of quality flows throughout the SparkLE and it's important considering its low price point. All in all, this is a powerful beat-making tool with functionality and sound quality way beyond its low price point.