Battle #86: The Microbattle

Hello friends,

It seems like we’re all short of time these days. So here’s a battle for everyone, all you need is 30+ minutes and an OP-1.

The basic idea is we’ll quickly record some source material onto tape. Then, we imagine an “audio microscope” to zoom in towards interesting details in the source material. We record that into the sampler, chop it appropriately and create a tune to taste.

Here are the steps for entering the battle.

  1. Turn on your OP-1 and record the first thing that you think of, onto the tape. This might be some synth chords, a drumbeat, the radio, a tombola sequence, even a nearby instrument via mic or line in. The important thing is to be quick. Record around 10 seconds of material on the tape.

  2. Let’s zoom in on what we recorded. Slowing the tape down is a great way to do this. And/or you might apply the compressor, make a tape loop, apply some mix effect, copy and paste, reverse… anything that highlights (or creates) something you like in the source material. When you’re done, leave the tape playhead at the start of the interesting part.

  3. Select one of the sampler slots (i.e. press the green drum button). Then, open the Inputs menu (i.e. shift + the orange microphone button). Select the “Ear” input. Now, we’ll record from the tape into the sampler. Play the tape and hold a key on the keyboard to record it into the sampler. Let go when finished.

  4. Use this sample you just recorded to build an interesting tune on the tape. Chop it, repitch it, add effects, create loops, and bring in other great sounds from your OP-1.

I think it took me longer to write these rules, than it did to make my first entry for the battle. Here’s “Microjam 1”:

Closing date for entries: 1 month from now - Wednesday 3rd May 2023


Nice brief! I’ll definitely try to participate, it’s been a while…

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Very nice. Sounds like you put a lot of thought into this one. I will be participating yet again. Might be good to take a break from relearning the Octatrack and spend some quality time again with the op-1f. Are we allowed more than one entry or is it set at one per participant? Any other gear allowed or just op-1? A month seems long but I’ll bet it will fly by. Looking forward to this one.

You’re encouraged to do more than one entry since they should be quick! if you have a lot of entries at the end you could choose one or two favourites for the final voting (to increase chances of winning!)

If you want to involve external gear, I’d suggest doing it in step 1, i.e. use it as part of your initial sound recording. Then use the OP1 itself to develop the full piece from there.

Have fun!

here is something or another of an entry, because why not.


Nice work KLN! We have one entry so far and one non-entry. Still two weeks left! If you worked on this every day you could produce 14 entries!

Really great brief! Has been great for “just sit down and do a thing”. Couple of attempts so far - mostly feeding some radio recordings into Finger sequencer.


Five days left on the battle - who is still planning to submit an entry?

And, would anyone find an extension helpful?

OK, i’m in!

#OP1 #teenageengineering #battle86 #battle086 #onthego #onthetrain #finaltouchesathome #sonicshrapnel1

Silver lining of doing sound on a Windows machine - sometimes you get glitchy garble out of Audacity that ends up being the impetus for the battle entry…

Thanks for a great brief - still took about 4 hours too long, but had fun diving into the darker glitchier side of the OP-1 and using the Phone FX on the Master bus (may be a first!)


(also on soundcloud for a limited time - for voting purposes! Stream 230501-battle-86-sonic-shrapnel-i by psound74 | Listen online for free on SoundCloud)


And round/entry #2!

#OP1 #teenageengineering #battle86 #battle086 #onthego #onthetrain #finaltouchesathome #addingToTheNarrative1

From a well-timed OP-1 field recording of a busker on the NYCT F-Line - between the announcements, there’s extra…enough for this round 2 entry!


(also on soundcloud for a limited time - for voting purposes! Stream 230502-battle-86-round2-adding-to-the-narrative-i by psound74 | Listen online for free on SoundCloud )

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give me the rest of the day and I’ll have an entry
EDIT: oh never mind, I see the deadline is tomorrow. I’m close to being done.

Alright … the deadline is today but since i’m in Europe, I’ll wrap things up tomorrow morning my time, giving anyone out in the Pacific islands until 23:59 on the 3rd May. Approximately. :slight_smile:

How are you getting on, @joeyfivecents ?

Last call for an extension if anyone would like one!

I mean, I’m close but if I didnt make it thats ok. I could have it done by tonight for sure.

I’m hearing a request for an extension til tomorrow… from somewhere… :smiley: lets wrap up tomorrow (Saturday), nice to finish on a weekend anyway. not sure why I chose a Wednesday as the end.

deconstructing, sampling, and sequencing snippets of the ukulele.

Alright - Saturday it is - as promised, battle closing now!

Voting thread on its way

Go forth and vote, good people of the forum. Battle #86: The Microbattle - VOTING THREAD (open to all)