Elektron is an electronic musical instrument company, based in Gothenburg, Sweden, founded in 1998. Its products include the SID-based SidStation, the Machinedrum percussion synthesizer, the Monomachine synthesizer, the Octatrack performance sampler, the Analog Four/Analog Keys synthesizer, and most recently the Analog Rytm analog percussion synthesizer.
In 1997 a handful of students, who got together during a university course at the Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, made a rough prototype of a synthesizer. The special thing about this sound module was that it was based on the sound chip found in the Commodore 64 home computer. The prototype was further developed and finalized as a marketable product. The little synthesizer, called the Sidstation, was initially made in a test run of ten units. The project was deemed commercially viable, so in 1998 a company was started to nurture it and Elektron was born.
The newly founded company received funding from the university's in-house venture capital investors Chalmers Invest, which made it possible to start manufacturing the Sidstation on a larger scale. The university provided Elektron with an office and thus things started to roll. The Sidstation sold in respectable quantities, and Elektron was already developing its next product.
It took three years to develop the next product, the Machinedrum, a drumcomputer with several synthesis methods and a Roland TR-like sequencer. It was released in 2001 and became quite successful.
In 2003, Elektron then released the Monomachine SFX-6 keyboard, a 6-voice monophonic Synthesizer, which also included a Roland TR/TB-like sequencer. The Monomachine SFX-6 was soon followed by the SFX-60 tabletop version. After the release of the Monomachine, Elektron parted with its investors, making the company a privately owned corporation.
In 2005, the Machinedrum SPS-1UW was added to the Elektron line up, which added Sampling capabilities to the Machinedrum.
In late 2007, the Machinedrum and the Monomachine were updated to MKII versions. The units got new looks, better hardware specifications and improved functionality. They were 100 percent backwards compatible.
In August 2007, Elektron CEO and co-founder Daniel Hansson died in an auto accident. The Elektron User community created a tribute for him.
In January 2011, the Octatrack DPS-1 dynamic performance sampler became available.
In December 2012, the Analog Four, a 4-voice analog synthesizer, became available.
In November 2013, the Analog Keys, a keyboard version of the Analog Four, was presented.
In 2014, Elektron presented the Analog Rytm, an analog drum machine with sample support.