Erica Synths and Sonic Potions LXR-02 £499
Future Music|Autumn 2021
Rob Redman braces himself for another resurrected blast from the past
Rob Redman

CONTACT WHO: Erica Synths and Sonic Potions

WEB: erica synths.lv

KEY FEATURES 6-voice digital drum machine with onboard effects, stackable transient generators

THE PROS & CONS

+ Easy workflow

Excellent and versatile sounds

Rock-solid

Lots of connectivity

Saveable presets to SD card

- No sample voices

No individual voice outputs

The LXR-02 is the product of a collaboration between Erica Synths and the creator of the original LXR, Julian Schmidt, also known as Sonic Potions. The original LXR was a do-it-yourself machine that, despite sharing many similarities with this new version, never quite achieved the mainstream drum machine status it hoped for. That said, it had a lot of love and was a fine machine for the more practically minded musician.

Physically, the second iteration has a similar layout and workflow but offers some well-deserved extras. The build quality for one is excellent, with a solid metal chassis, nice resistant controls and the addition of sliders; one for each voice plus a master volume. For performance and jamming this is an especially welcome change, as it makes it far easier to note volume levels and make changes on the fly than with rotary controls. Visually, the LXR-02 will be familiar to Erica Synths fans, with its red display and that big black data encoder.

Ins and outs

Round the back there is plenty of I/O running from four outputs (two stereo pairs) MIDI in and out and USB, as well as the power, clock in, out and reset and an SD card slot. Many questioned whether the SD card would allow for sample playback but unfortunately this,is not the case at the moment. The SD card is there for saving and loading presets, in itself a welcome feature. There are no dedicated per-voice outputs, but the mixer section allows the user to pan voices across the stereo field, which is a nice touch.

The lack of sampling kind of indicates what this drum machine is all about, which is virtual analogue sound shaping and sequencing using the tried and tested Roland standard, so most drum machine enthusiasts will be right at home with this.

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