The Official Sequential/DSI Forum

Hardware Sequencers

Gerry Havinga

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  • Really enjoying creating sounds and composing.
    • For the love of electronic music
Re: Hardware Sequencers
« Reply #80 on: March 15, 2019, 01:10:02 AM »
Last December I purchased the Manikin Schrittmacher as I ran out of patience and time waiting for the Cirklon. I have been on the waiting list since December 2017, so it will happen, just me having a buffer overflow of a 64 bit patience counter  ;) and really wanting to start building a live setup.

My objective for this year is to create a live set, with a few tracks that span an hour and a half (or more). Programming the sequences using the Schrittmacher and the Digitone (its sequencer playing the inner voices and a few external synths) with some "live" playing the Rev2 from my side.

I now have a few months elapsed time "gigging" in my studio and it is slowly starting to happen. I only have a few hours a week to practice, but that is enough to get a good feel for combining both sequencers with external synths (no computer!).

I will keep you all posted with regards to my adventures, mainly for composing and playing live.

Moving away from the "serial" and pattern based workflow, composing in Bitwig, to a "looped" workflow, composing and playing the Schrittmacher, has been a very interesting experience. Much more difficult to change my mind-set than I expected. But great fun though.
Prophet X, Prophet Rev2 and Evolver desktop, Waldorf Blofeld, Roland System-1, Korg Microstation, Nord Rack 2, Akai S5000, Dato DUO, Elektron Digitone, Deepmind12D, Schrittmacher, Bitwig v2. Daw-less...

https://soundcloud.com/user-252754541
https://open.spotify.com/artist/1QKocb4H6mNRVJ01qyqd

Gerry Havinga

  • ***
  • 286
  • Really enjoying creating sounds and composing.
    • For the love of electronic music
Re: Hardware Sequencers
« Reply #81 on: March 16, 2019, 02:07:54 PM »
Beginning of a new track, continuing to experiment with the Schrittmacher and the Digitone sequencers.

https://soundcloud.com/user-252754541/live003

Recorded in one take, directly into Bitwig. I realised one handy trick is to start the Schrittmacher, putting Bitwig in slave mode so it starts recording as soon as I hit play and starting the Digitone on an empty pattern (silence). This allows a restive start and I have the time to switch lanes / patterns on/off at leisure.

Schrittmacher is the master clock and sequencing layer A of the Rev2, patch is mine, relatively simple unison brass patch. No external effects. Digitone is clocked and started from the Schrittmacher, but note and CC receive is switched off for this project. Digitone plays three internal tracks, factory presets slightly tweaked.

I can feel my workflow starting to become stable. Most difficult part is limiting myself to which synths I will take on the road and which sequencer is driving what. Obviously while performing there is no time for much tweaking and corrections. I will have to keep it simple and keep the focus on playing, controlling the sequencers and modulating parameters.

The Schrittmacher does have some serious limitations, such as no clock on MIDI out B ....... But the circular, looped nature of the lanes affecting each other is amazing. For sequencing the Rev2 I use 4 lanes for the different patterns, only playing 8 notes. I use an add track to modulate the note values by octaves up and down, running at a different speed. I use a length track to modulate length of the notes.

I am still experimenting with the Schrittmachers encoder in global mode. I have one encoder controlling the Rev2's master volume (CC 7), this works well.

Great fun!
Prophet X, Prophet Rev2 and Evolver desktop, Waldorf Blofeld, Roland System-1, Korg Microstation, Nord Rack 2, Akai S5000, Dato DUO, Elektron Digitone, Deepmind12D, Schrittmacher, Bitwig v2. Daw-less...

https://soundcloud.com/user-252754541
https://open.spotify.com/artist/1QKocb4H6mNRVJ01qyqd

Re: Hardware Sequencers
« Reply #82 on: March 22, 2019, 08:58:55 AM »
Jok3r, 

The SEQ if you are recording live and polyphonically into to it will require a track for every finger that is pressed at once.  I rarely play better than 4 note chords, so, for example,  4 tracks are used.   Each button of the 32 steps can only hold one note value.   One of the perks in this sequencer versus the Arturia Keystep which I also have, is that I can output individual tracks to separate midi channels.  What I had in mind when I got it was to use it mainly on the Vermona Perfourmer to take advantage of it's four layers.   I do have a Doepher Darktime sequencer, but that is limited to two out channels.

I should clarify that each button (or step) on the Polyend can indeed hold a chord which you input via the rotary note knob.  You just cannot "record" your own chord into a single step.  For that purpose it is done as I said above.
DSI Equipment: Poly Evolver Keyboard, Evolver desktop, Prophet 8,  Pro-2, OB6, P-12
 

https://Soundcloud.com/wavescape-1

Gerry Havinga

  • ***
  • 286
  • Really enjoying creating sounds and composing.
    • For the love of electronic music
Re: Hardware Sequencers
« Reply #83 on: March 24, 2019, 07:13:34 AM »
Fourth attempt at creating a live playable track:  https://soundcloud.com/user-252754541/live004

This time just the Rev2 and the Digitone, sequencing by Schrittmacher (clock) and driving the Rev2, Digitone slaved to the clock and sequencing itself. Most patches are mine, I used one stock Digitone patch for rhythmic bell like effects.

I am getting close to "proper"  track building using this sequencer combination. What was missing so far was a link between the Digitone and the Schrittmacher following whenever a root note (chord) change happened.

I figured this one out by dedicating one of the MIDI tracks of the Digitone sending, when a chord/root note changes, transposing the Schrittmacher on the fly. There is a facility for this called Key, just had to figure it out.

I am not happy enough yet with this track (using my 75% rule), but getting very close. Final transition and ending are not to my liking yet. I still have S4 left on the Schrittmacher and several lanes on the other sessions. But taking into account I want to be able to play this live, the order of the different parts and sequencing should be logical (for example Digitone tracks and Schrittmacher sequence sessions should match).

I am particularly pleased with the transition around 3:20 - 3:40 and the Klaus Schulze like Rev2 patch. Getting a smooth transition from one Schrittmacher session to the other is challenging. I just need to practice, just matter of time :)
Prophet X, Prophet Rev2 and Evolver desktop, Waldorf Blofeld, Roland System-1, Korg Microstation, Nord Rack 2, Akai S5000, Dato DUO, Elektron Digitone, Deepmind12D, Schrittmacher, Bitwig v2. Daw-less...

https://soundcloud.com/user-252754541
https://open.spotify.com/artist/1QKocb4H6mNRVJ01qyqd

Gerry Havinga

  • ***
  • 286
  • Really enjoying creating sounds and composing.
    • For the love of electronic music
Re: Hardware Sequencers
« Reply #84 on: March 26, 2019, 04:44:50 PM »
Fifth attempt at writing and playing live (no "computers" involved), this is a very dark track. Heavy synth patches, deep basses, expressing my frustrations from work today  ;) Feels really good.

https://soundcloud.com/user-252754541/live005

Schrittmacher + Digitone sequencing.

Start with Rev2 in multimode, sequenced by the Schrittmacher, layer A first followed after a few beats by layer two.

Digitone joins in with a simple pattern and after a while a really nice solid bass (took some fiddling on the Digitone).

Transition to Blofeld which is also sequenced by the Schrittmacher. Blofeld is playing one of Don Solaris' patched (OBrass). Eventually Evolver joins in with an alternative bass patch,  I love the sound of those oscillators. Evolver is sequenced and audio patched through the Digitone (some drive added).

Written and recorded this evening. Seems I have a workflow of about 5 hours now from nothing to an acceptable track. Much better than on the computer (16 to 20 hours).

Play it loud and enjoy!
Prophet X, Prophet Rev2 and Evolver desktop, Waldorf Blofeld, Roland System-1, Korg Microstation, Nord Rack 2, Akai S5000, Dato DUO, Elektron Digitone, Deepmind12D, Schrittmacher, Bitwig v2. Daw-less...

https://soundcloud.com/user-252754541
https://open.spotify.com/artist/1QKocb4H6mNRVJ01qyqd