PO 12 or PO 32

Hello. I’m Thinking about buying a pocket operator for drum. I have some experience of drum programming in a sequencer (software). PO12 seems good but now PO32 is also there.

first a basic question: how many drum samples can be used simultaneously inn one pattern.

my choices are

1.PO 12 with silicone case
2.PO 32 (will it be safe without case?)
both will cost the same.


1.upto what extent PO12 samples can be tweaked ?is it possible to get most of the percussion sounds by tweaking?
2.Is spending 30$ worthy in case of PO32 ?
3.which got more value for money?
4.If I enter my own samples on the PO 32 by vst …will samples be saved in the device memory and can i make my own custom bank of 16 samples on the standalone device. then what will happen to the factory samples.

Thank you

Hey @Rusty :slight_smile:

I believe you have a max polyphony of 4 voices on both devices.
Voice stealing doesn’t work the same though.

1. I have no idea what you mean by “most of the percussion sounds” : PO-12 is very original, it doesn’t overlap with a TR-909 but it’s very punchy, it’s definitely not ashamed of its lofi character. PO-12 sounds really great, I still love it a lot for what it does.
2. I have no case, it doesn’t bother me. When I travel, I just put the POs in a solid little carboard chocolate box with some fabric tissues.
3. IMO PO-32 is the best crafted of all the PO series, the UX is almost perfect wrt the way PO work.
As one can change PO-32 sounds + save/recall your patterns and tweaks by recording/playing the sound (!!) it is obviously the best choice.
4. PO-32 doesn’t do samples. It’s 100% synthesis based on Microtonic soft. You would be able to enter a patch from someone that owns Microtonic, or your previous patches (the last solution means you wouldn’t get new sounds though).

I own both and for me PO32 sounds better with a cleaner bottom end. I find it better for live jamming as it has channel mutes and solo’s.

If I could only keep one it would be the PO-32.

I own both, as well as a PO-14 with a case.

For me, the PO-32 is much more fun, better sounding and more versatile compared to the PO-12.

I’m not sure the case adds much except making it more rugged, heavier, requiring heavier button presses too. I do like the cases, but I think they are fine without a case, and much smaller. If you are going to throw a PO into a backpack, loose with no other protection, a case would be essential though.

Faced with a PO-12+case vs PO-32, I’d go with the PO-32.

My PO-32 arrived yesterday and I´m really impressed. I don´t think that the Pocket Operators are little toys - they sound massive, are very creative and some of them experimental in a way that deserves a mention in the history of music hardware - but in some ways, you get what you pay for.

It´s different with the PO-32.

Even with the fragile case (and mine got even some soldering errors), you feel that the software is at the pinnacle of the PO´s, the effects are amazing and the vanilla sounds are great. Indeed, I´m even thinking about getting another one just to have the original with the factory bank, which sounds so good even without tweaking with the Microtonic <3

So PO 32 got better sounds…

could anyone send me the sounds of the PO 32 by recording it. The percussion sounds at original parameter then tweaking it showing it possibilities sepecially
7.close/open hihat

This track is 100% PO-32 :


Sonic Charge has a trial version for the microtonic VST, you may chck that out, just have in mind that it can`t do the PO-32 effects.

I don’t have the PO-32 yet nor the plugin, but sound 7 in the PO-12 is awesome and I think it might be difficult to design using synthesis.

My cat is amazed whenever she hears it, whether amplified or coming through the internal speaker

I’d avoid the cases at all costs.

Bought one to protect my PO-12 a couple of months ago, took it off a few weeks later when I noticed a lot of hiss. Turns out some moisture got under the silicone and rotted the contacts around the encoders because it couldn’t evaporate, it takes long enough to put the case on properly that it’s not realistic to be removing it all the time to check for moisture.

TL;DR your PO is safer without one, get a Tonic. Or a Volca… :wink:

Contacted TE to ask for a refund on the case, since essentially something I paid £25 for has destroyed my PO rather than protect it, and the best they could offer was “a small discount on a new PO-12”. Pretty shitty customer service for a piece of grossly overpriced silicone.


I own the PO-12, not the PO-32. But from what I hear in the post from LyingDalai on March 8 they are not that diferent. Apart from some “special effects”. I don’t know how more complicated it is to program the PO-32, but to my taste the PO-12 is already complicated enough. And a lot of sounds and effects can almost not be used because they sound too bad.

The show-stealers on the PO-12 are for me:

  • The kick drum that can go l.o.o.o.o.o.o.w.w.w.w.w because you can set the delay, a bit like on an 808.
  • The fact that it has a sequencer in 808 style. Believe me: if you’ve ever owned a drum machine like the famous Alesis SR-16 you’ll know what I mean.
  • Snappy snare drum if you apply effect Nr. 2 (distortion).

So to answer your question Nr. 1: yes! One uses the rotary knobs for that. See manual on TE’s website.

Have fun and goor luck with your Pocket Operator! :slight_smile: