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Sequencer software

Sequencer software
« on: August 30, 2017, 10:04:20 AM »
I have never used a sequencer but I have a job that will be finished quicker if I can play a note sequence from my Macbook Pro computer and manipulate my Prophet 12 controls live.
  I don't want to spend any money and would like a/some recommendation/s for free software that will send simple pitch information one note at a time at a given speed.
  The stuff I saw online seemed unnecessarily complicated and I didn't know what was virus free or dependable, but I'm sure some of you do. (I'm rubbish with computers and don't get out much)

Besties, Andy

chysn

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Re: Sequencer software
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2017, 05:51:23 AM »
If you read music, check out MuseScore 2 (https://musescore.org/en/download)

Technically, it's notation software. But it has extensive MIDI capabilities. It does loop playback, and also observes things like repeat signs. I used Finale for 20 years, but MuseScore has really matured into a top-notch contender. I find it more stable on Mac, with a better user interface.

MuseScore FOSS. It's a community-supported open-source project, free as in speech and beer. You can obtain it without worry from the URL above

For free workstation software, I would recommend Reaper. It's a full DAW, but has a nice MIDI sequencer with both event and piano roll editing. It's technically a commercial product. However, the evaluation version isn't crippled (you can still record as much as you want and save stuff). It'll just ask you to buy a license every so often. The non-commercial license is only $60, so if you decide it's worth buying, it's relatively inexpensive.

Another option is Ableton Live Lite. I love Ableton. Its sequencer is very performance-oriented; you can create MIDI clips and launch them in a specific order ("arrangement), or take over and play them live. Ableton, too, is a commercial product, but you'll get Live Lite for free with a lot of products (for example, if you pick up a Novation Launch Control for $60, you'll have both Ableton and a nice interface to launch your clips). The only real limitation is that Live Lite allows only 8 tracks.
DSI: DSM03; previously: Mopho Keyboard, Desktop Mopho, Evolver, DSM01
Hardware: Eurorack, Arturia MicroBrute
Software: macOS, Ableton, MuseScore2
Modular Grid: https://www.modulargrid.net/e/racks/view/354385
GitHub: https://github.com/chysn

Re: Sequencer software
« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2017, 06:34:35 AM »
Thanks Chysn
My Mac warned me not to open Musescore, but also it is Standard Notation based which causes complications. All my work is based on my own system which allows for every possible variation of note patterns within Equally Tempered scales, and Western notation is one of the worst ways of writing it - double flats and sharps and worse when my system makes it all so much easier for esoteric keys and chords. I just use sharps and treat them as unrelated (names) to the other 7 notes so that swapping from an octatonic to a harmonic minor type key just involves dropping and adding notes rather than renaming the same note from B flat to A sharp etc.

I am not prepared to spend any money on a product that takes the life out of my music, I was just being a bit lazy and for the Background chord parts I figured that i could trigger the notes together and adjust the timbres for each note by hand to make the chords more interesting. Maybe the slower way (all by hand) is better as the chords will sound less machine driven in time time as well as timbre.

chysn

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Re: Sequencer software
« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2017, 08:41:01 AM »
My Mac warned me not to open Musescore,

Community-supported software efforts don't always have the resources to join Apple's Developer Program, so this is pretty common with free software. What you'd want to do is open System Preferences, then select Security and Privacy, and you'll see an override on the General tab.
DSI: DSM03; previously: Mopho Keyboard, Desktop Mopho, Evolver, DSM01
Hardware: Eurorack, Arturia MicroBrute
Software: macOS, Ableton, MuseScore2
Modular Grid: https://www.modulargrid.net/e/racks/view/354385
GitHub: https://github.com/chysn

Re: Sequencer software
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2017, 09:18:18 AM »
I said I was rubbish at computers - but what I failed to explain clearly is that I just want to sent midi note information to  play my Prophet12 from my Mac leaving me hands free to manipulate the sound. Musescore doesn't seem to output Midi. My trouble is that I am task centred whereas a lot of software is 'all singing and all dancing' and I am only interested in one simple outcome. Thanks for the suggestions anyway.

chysn

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Re: Sequencer software
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2017, 10:01:52 AM »
Musescore doesn't seem to output Midi.

It certainly does output MIDI. But if you don't want to use standard notation, like you said, it's not the thing for you.

If you're "rubbish at computers" then why do you want to make music with computers? It seems like it would really be a drag for you. Have you considered a hardware sequencer?
DSI: DSM03; previously: Mopho Keyboard, Desktop Mopho, Evolver, DSM01
Hardware: Eurorack, Arturia MicroBrute
Software: macOS, Ableton, MuseScore2
Modular Grid: https://www.modulargrid.net/e/racks/view/354385
GitHub: https://github.com/chysn

chysn

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  • 1132
Re: Sequencer software
« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2017, 11:33:57 AM »
Oh! One more suggestion for Mac. My son uses LMMS, which is another free, community-supported product. I've never tried it, but he likes it a lot:

https://lmms.io/
DSI: DSM03; previously: Mopho Keyboard, Desktop Mopho, Evolver, DSM01
Hardware: Eurorack, Arturia MicroBrute
Software: macOS, Ableton, MuseScore2
Modular Grid: https://www.modulargrid.net/e/racks/view/354385
GitHub: https://github.com/chysn