Updated: Feb 16
Not many overdrive pedals possess midi capabilities, even fewer so when it comes to analog ones. Enter the Elektron Analog Drive, a fully analog, multi-circuit beast that is midi-capable. The Analog Drive houses 8 different analog circuits, offering you a wide palate of tones for all your overdrive needs. From clean boost, to fuzz and distortion, and everything in between, the Analog Drive has you covered. Today, we see how the Morningstar MC6 midi controller gives you unprecedented and unparalleled control over the Analog Drive. For easy reference, here is the link to the Elektron Analog Drive User Manual.
Make sure the Analog Drive is set to your desired midi channel. All messages sent from the MC6 to the Analog Drive should be sent through that channel.
The Analog Drive has 100 preset slots corresponding to Program Change (PC) messages #00 to #99. You can tailor you Analog Drive tone to taste and save them to each of these preset slots. Then, simply send a PC message from the MC6 to the Analog Drive to recall your desired presets. Remember, this can also be done simultaneously with changing presets on your other pedals, allowing you to change your drive, reverb, delay and modulation settings with a single switch press. Powerful stuff.
Toggling Between 2 Overdrive Presets with a Single Switch
Here's a net trick. You can toggle between 2 different different Analog Drive presets on the MC6 with a single switch. To do this, simply enable Toggle 'ON' on an MC6 switch. This will allow you to send 2 different midi messages with one switch. In this example, I have set PC #00 (a mild overdrive setting) to be in Toggle Position 1 and PC #01 (a more saturated overdrive setting) to be in Toggle Position 2. This means that when I first step on my MC6 switch, PC #00 will be sent. The second time I press the switch, PC #01 will be sent. The third time, PC #00 will be sent again. You essentially alternate between these 2 midi messages, allowing you to go between a light and heavier drive setting by tapping a single switch. Here are the MC6 settings required to achieved this:
You can also use the Toggle function to alternate between any 2 sets of messages you wish. For example, you could also use this to toggle between 2 different overdrive circuit types, gain settings, EQ settings etc.
Punching In and Out Momentarily
With the MC6 MkII, you can use its action-based programming capabilities to punch in and out during a song by holding down a switch. Releasing the switch will revert your tone to its previous setting. For example, you may wish to have high gain/volume for a short burst of time, or you may want to momentarily add/remove bottom end frequencies for certain parts of a song.
In this example, we will use the MC6 and Analog Drive to momentarily punch in with a more saturated and higher gain preset. First, we will set desired base preset to be recalled by the 'Release' of an MC6 switch. To do this, select the 'Release' action type when programming the MC6, and set it to send PC #00. Next we will program the same switch to send PC #01 when pressed. And we're done. This way, you can activate your desire preset wit PC #00 by pressing and releasing the switch, and punch in momentarily by sending PC #01 by holding down the switch. When you release the switch the Analog Drive will revert back to preset PC #00. Here is a screen recording of the MC6 settings.
The Analog Drive serves up a versatile palette of overdrive and distortion tones. Its control limitations can be overcome with midi control by the Morningstar MC6 MkII midi controller, allowing it to be a powerful and flexible tool in your arsenal of effects pedals.