Exchange tips and tricks for the Akai MPC4000
By ONE Sun Apr 25, 2004 5:55 am
I'm starting this thread in hopes that everyone who has valuable knowledge on the 4k will post something useful to help out those who are just starting to get their feet wet with the 4K.

It's not a secret that the 4k is a BEAST. It's very complicated and overwhelming to many new users. It's even complicated and overwhelming to those who have many years of MPC experience under their belt. So in light of this I would like to start a thread that every 4k newbie can reference when they first get their machine.

I would like the more experienced 4k owners to participate and help this thread grow!




I've been getting A LOT of PM's over the past few years, and quite a few lately in regards to help with the basic functions of the 4k.

I have NOT had the 4k for years now. I am rusty when it comes to info. on it, and since I no longer have one in front of me, I cannot be of much help.

So, please, do not PM me for help. There is a whole forum here for you to read and many current 4k users to answer your questions.

Also, the questions I've been getting are mostly from very impatient people who do not want to read the manual and/or figure things out for themselves.

PLEASE do yourself a favor and read the manual. If you REALLY do not understand after that than ask someone who is a regular in the 4k forum.

Thank You!

Last edited by ONE on Wed Jan 06, 2010 7:08 am, edited 5 times in total.

By ddot_SFV Sun Apr 25, 2004 6:19 am
it seems like 98% of what you need has already been posted.

By ONE Sun Apr 25, 2004 6:23 am
First Tip: When hooking up your MPC 4000 for the first time take notice of the input jacks on the REC IN panel on the rear of the 4k. There are two sets.

1st one is a phono jack. Only connect your turntable to this jack.(if your turntable has a pre-amp make sure its turned off). On many turntables you will notice a 3rd wire. The end of this may be a bare wire or something that looks like a hook. If it's bare twist it and bend it into a hook. On the back of the 4k next to the phono jacks you will notice something that says "signal gnd". Twist the black knob until there is enough room to place the bare wire or hook underneath the metal spikey thing under the black knob. Then tighten up the black knob on the wire. Your turntable is now grounded!

In the REC IN section on the back of the MPC you will also notice two big jacks - LINE/MIC - These are combo 2 in 1 jacks. They work for both XLR jacks and 1/4 plugs (or those big headphone jacks that you use for stereo equipment as opposed to the smaller sized plugs that are generally used for the headphones on your discman). If you have a mic or something with an XLR plug you want to sample plug it in. Other wise you are going to have to use the 1/4 jack. If you look at the LINE/MIC jacks there is a hole in the centre of the jack. The 1/4 jack plugs into there.

If you are wanting to hook up an external audio source for sampling that only has a Phono Out, don't fret. You can get 1/4 jack to phono jack adapters at any radioshack. They are cheap too!

Also, on the REC IN panel you will notice a switch next to the phono plugs for your turntable. This is NOT used to switch the phono jack from a phono level jack to a line level jack. The phono jacks on the 4000 always stay at phono level. This switch is used to switch between the phono input jacks and the XLR combo jacks on the REC IN panel. It is a SOURCE input selector. This way you can keep both your turntable and another source hooked up to the MPC at the same time, and you use the switch to determine which source you want to record/sample from.

By ONE Sun Apr 25, 2004 6:27 am
ddot_SFV wrote:it seems like 98% of what you need has already been posted.

I just want to create an easy reference for newbies who just got their equipment and are overwhelmed. This is not for seasoned users. But I would appreciate if the more experienced users will drop some jewelz to help get peeps off and running quicker and easier, so that they can move onto the more advanced capabilities of the machine sooner.

I want this thread to be "newbie" safe, as in no dumb questions here. I would like people to refrain from comments that make others feel stupid. If there are those that feel they MUST need to make others feel stupid please don't post here. PM me and tell me I'm stupid for all I care, but I feel this is needed. I went through every single page of the 4k forum and there is still TONS of stuff regarding this machine that has not been addressed. I just want something that will cover all the basics, and be here to get people off on the good foot.
By ONE Sun Apr 25, 2004 6:56 am
After downloading the Ak.sys application from Use a file unzip utility such as winzip to unzip the file. Double click on the zipped file, then double click on aksys253.exe. This should bring up an install wizard...proceed to install the program.

Download the USB device driver for MPC4000 ak.Sys from the akai website and unzip the file. Using a USB cord connect your PC to your MPC. When connection to the MPC make sure you are using the USB port on the back. This is the "slave" port and will allow remote control access of the MPC by your PC.

Turn on our MPC. You should get a pop up window on your PC basically saying that the system is looking for a driver. It may say the file was not found. If it does click on the manual option and click the button that says "Browse" Now go through the directory tree and find the unzipped driver file (akmpc4ku2) click ok. Click OK again to let the system find the driver file in the folder. It should do this no problem.

At this point you should be able to go to your programs folders from the Start menu and find the aksys prog open it. Make sure that the 4k is still on, and under the samplers list you should see an icon and it will say MPC 4000. double click on that, and you're ready to use ak.sys!
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By FROGTOWN Sun Apr 25, 2004 7:25 am
MY ADVICE is learning what the words in the manual really mean.
this will cut down the learning curb a LITTLE SMALL.
i think when we get the 4000 we are in SUCH a hurry to bang beats
so we go to the manual and we are like what the f--- then we try to
cheat looking at thread such as this one and the only difference between
the experts and everyone else is




By ONE Sun Apr 25, 2004 7:36 am
There are illiterate people that can do amazing things. There are a lot of successful catz out there that can barely read, and that's in any field or profession. Let's give those who are struggling a little boost. They may surprise us later on.

I'm a 4k newbie, but I'm willing to give out what I learn while I'm learning. Right now I'm starting at the beginning myself. There are a lot of questions I need answers to, but I'm also willing to give what I've learned.

I would have loved to see a thread like this, so i figured why not start one. Especially on the most difficult MPC there is!

BTW I don't look at this as cheating. Some people are just more gifted in some areas than others. There is a need for a MPC-Tutor isn't there? That's why we are all here. We are all students and teachers of the MPC. It doesn't matter how you attain the knowledge and long as you get it!

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By FROGTOWN Sun Apr 25, 2004 7:59 am
I smell you player but think about this if they cant read or understand words how then can they read a thread?
refer to the forum but also put your work in i thought i could come on here
and cheat the game but the mpc 4000 is a not for the lazy(not that you or anyone else is)but it take time
like i said but understanding tech words and organizeing the sounds and putting this
knowledge into action is tha way.
keep your love and stay on the path learn something new everyday
and keep notebook of things you have learned before you know it
the manual will start to make sence
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By Blue Haze Sun Apr 25, 2004 2:10 pm
Keep going ONE you figured right and Frogtown tip about writing down everything in a notebook is great advice. I have faith in ya!! Small tip for checking the bpm of a loop is to go into the Sample page. Press the trim page and trim the start and end of the sample correctly. Next go to the end of the sample turn the wheel until it reads beats plus bpm. Adjust the beats to the correct number of beats and switch back to the bpm and it should be set right. A shortcut if you already know the number of beats/bars is to go straight to region page and press the bpm page and just enter the number of beats for the bpm. It is fairly accurate.

And don`t forget to press every button with the manual in hand. :D

By ONE Sun Apr 25, 2004 2:44 pm
Now this is the "Real Deal" Manual: ...

I actually only got the "Introductory" Manual and it's a piece of sh!t. It's over 400 pages, but it's 100 pages per LANGUAGE. Not a lot of info there! The link up there ^^^ is much is a much much better user guide.
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By Blue Haze Sun Apr 25, 2004 3:21 pm
ONE wrote:Now this is the "Real Deal" Manual: ...

I actually only got the "Introductory" Manual and it's a piece of sh!t. It's over 400 pages, but it's 100 pages per LANGUAGE. Not a lot of info there! The link up there ^^^ is much is a much much better user guide.

Check out the earlier MPC 4000 manuals 1.30 addenmdums that Reveal talked about before on Qlinks and the like. Not everything revised or changed were included in the lastest manuals. I forgot the link but Reveal knows.
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By descry Sun Apr 25, 2004 4:01 pm
Few easy tips:

Track Copying:
Go to Seq Edit press F3 (copy) twice, and you will come to a new Sequence Edit page. Select the sequence and track to copy to/from there.

1. Select a sample you want to slice.

2. Press [F3] for the region page of the sample section

3. On the region page of the sample section, if you look closely between the sample diagram and the zoom sample diagram, there's Region setting with a number 1 next to it. Move the cursor to the [1] and press the orange or yellow [Window] button. Excuse me guys, I'm going color blind in low light.

4. You now notice there is a [Refer to:] selection and it’s set to [Trim]. Leave the setting on trim, because we want the mpc4k to slice and trim the sample down on to different pads.

5. Move the cursor to [Number of Regions:] and select 16 and press [Do it]. The reason to select 16, is to have the mpc4k slice the sample to 16 pads in pad bank (A). So once everything is done and by the way, this works great for drum loop samples. The mpc4k will have 16 pads with the kick, snare, hit-hat, etc. from the drum sample.

6. Now press the F5 [edit] on the region page.

7. Move the Cursor to [Create new program] and select yes. If you don't select yes. The mpc4k will chop the drum sample to 16 small samples in the sample section and you will have to assign each sample to a program manually. Also by selecting yes, the mpc4k will name the new program after the drumsample.

8. Leave the [End margin] set to 0 because, if you increase the end margin you will get wider margin of the slice sample (smaller the margin, tighter the sample). Increase the margin and you might hear one note and the beginning of the next note of the drum sample assign to a pad.

9. Press [Do it] to have the mpc4k complete the slicing.

10. All done. Now you can go to Program section and select the drum program that's named after the sample you sliced. Hit [Pad bank] A and enjoy the new sliced samples.

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By Iceberg-Slim Mon Apr 26, 2004 12:09 am
Buy that mpc4k tape 1 and 2
Print out the reference manual
Find some good and plentiful amount of samples
Get a Midi Controller(piano) to play out your shit, you will have a hard time doing on pads

Get some basic Music Theory so you will understand shit like Tempo, Time Signatures, Notes, Chords, and etc

You should be on your way
By ONE Sat May 01, 2004 5:36 am
Note repeat only works when the sequencer is in motion, and when timing correct is turned ON. Note repeat works with the "ticks" in the sequencer. If you want to play with Note Repeat just make sure a sequence is playing, or is in overdub or record mode, and the timing correct button is on.
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By Blue Haze Sun May 02, 2004 4:12 pm
PPQ is Pulse per Quarter Note or ticks each means the same. The MPC 4000 sequencer runs at 960 ppq per quarter note. Depending on your timing correct 1/8, 1/16, 1/32 and etc determines the placement of your notes. In the manual it states that a 8th note is 480 ticks, 16th note is 240 ticks, and a 1/32 is 120 ticks etc. When you are editing your sequence in seq edit or step edit go to the Now field move the time by the tick field consisting (01.01.000) the Measure, Bar, and Tick. Anyone can go to anypoint of the sequence edit, insert, change, or delete any note you set using the T/C field. Some basic music theory and note duration (length of your Notes) and Velocity (loudness and softness of your notes) can help anyone tighten up their patterns and programming. Their are other tips and tricks you can use the sequence and step edit for that more advanced keyboard players can give also. :D