Akai MPC4000

Year released: 2002

Just Blaze: "Even though I'm not the biggest fan of the MPC3000 now, I respect the 3000 for what it was and the signifigance it had. You can't have a hip-hop musician talking about gadgets and not mention that. I prefer the 4000, personally. For me, the 4000 is what I created most of what people consider my classics on. All the Blueprint stuff. The 4000 had way more sampling time, you could manipulate samples and filters in so many different ways that you couldn't do on any MPC before. You could edit samples using WAV form instead of numbers—on the 3000 you had to edit samples by numbers, I hated that. I never liked that. The 4000 had more sample banks. If I can name one piece of hardware that pushed my work to the next level, it's probably the 4000."