Rich Stroffolino

Teenage engineering has justifiably gotten flack for creating designer audio gear that is ridiculously expensive for what it does. Their recent Field series saw them a long way from the entry level price point of Pocket Operators. Glad to see them making something much more approachable with their new EP-133.

One, it looks awesome, like a Famicom meets a Speak and Spell. But more importantly, for a $300 sampler, it seems to check a lot of boxes. Stereo sampling, lots of effects (including for external sources), velocity sensitive pads, deep sequencer, not completely crippled I/O, there’s a lot to love!

Now it’s Teenage Engineering, so there will assuredly be a weird UI, frustrating limitations (64MB of sample memory to start), and likely quality control issues. But it’s way cheaper than the SP-404, which is I’m guessing its main competition. Nice to see them making functional things that I can actually afford (that isn’t a weird wooden chorus).

The Verge published a nice piece talking with TE co-founder David Eriksson with some more thoughts on how they designed it. Hopefully we’ll see some other Pocket Operators “upgraded” to the EP lineup. Would love to see a dedicated drum machine with this form factor.