Midibox seq v4+

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latigid on
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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by latigid on » Mon Aug 03, 2020 5:53 pm

Yes! Andrew's videos are awesome and highly recommended! So is this guide:
http://wiki.midibox.org/doku.php?id=mid ... uide:start

The difference between the Wilba SEQ and the midiphy one lies in the second button row, the function of which is determined by the LEDs around the datawheel on the left/right (depending on the LH/RH case variant). So you now have direct access to 16 tracks rather than the 4x groups of four. Still, the UI indicates them as grouped tracks, which is useful for pattern switching as mentioned by Andrew. Accessing layers, mutes etc. is also much flatter. Apart from that, the workflow is essentially the same and running on the same software (UI is configured/can be customised in a config file).
Figure me if I misunderstood, but do the CV accuracy issues stem from the 12 bit DAC? Supposedly 16 bit DACs are better for 1V/Oct voice CV control? Regardless, does the updated DAC, combined with proper calibration allow for accurate modulator voice tracking? If I were to commit, I would be using it to drive Eurorack voices & drums.
12-bit DACs are fine. I checked the initial accuracy/non-linearity of several 16-bit ones and found many with an error of... a few bits! So even though it says 16-bit on the tin, in reality you can only use a portion of that. Yes, you can get great tracking to within a few mV error (or less) with the midiphy modules.
I think I could get the entire Seq v4+ Kit+BOM for around 900-1000USD, more for those really slick Eurorack modules.
If you shop around it might even be cheaper. No VAT (at least no EU VAT) for orders into the US. Part lists can be aggregated for quantity discounts, or use your own stock. Most of the ICs and passives can be substituted.

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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by omega8870 » Tue Aug 04, 2020 5:37 am

I really appreciate you fellas taking a moment to answer my noobish questions about the MidiBox. The statement, its an "open-source, open-hardware" version of the Cirklon is fairly accurate.

I'm gonna dive in, and take a real close look at the MidiPhy Kit, the eurorack expansion and the associated BoMs. Maybe this is a better way to spend that $1K than a couple used Cwejman modules.

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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by tom » Tue Aug 04, 2020 7:08 am

omega8870 wrote:
Tue Aug 04, 2020 5:37 am
"open-source, open-hardware" version of the Cirklon
I did not check the license tho ...
And I don't know the Circlon at all, so take this statement with caution.
For me it's like the contrary of the Circlon with their gated community forum.

And also I must admit, that currently I am working with the computer as my only sequencer, as I am a piano player, and my songs have been quite static on the Seq4 so I got bored fast.
The "midi-fx" are kind of retro but still effective (echo, delay, altering voices ect), don't know if Circlon gives more meta-algos as Midibox's eurcledian rhythms?
While I still love step sequencers for drums ...

But again I am sure that this is just me: if I'd dig deeper, attaching a keyboard and other midi controllers and hacking into it could become crazy advanced like tracker-kids do.

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revtor
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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by revtor » Tue Aug 04, 2020 12:44 pm

Tom if you’re primarily a keyboard player, take a look at the MidiPhy Loopa, which is more of a midi recorder / looper, as opposed to seq4, which is very much a “step sequencer”

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revtor
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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by revtor » Fri Aug 07, 2020 4:20 pm

Mine is finished!! #34

Can’t wait to put it through its paces..

Let’s get this thread moved to General gear?? Orrr I can start a new one.
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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by jingo » Mon Aug 10, 2020 3:06 pm

I had a v4+, but only for MIDI Duties and some Eurorack with a midi 2 cv converter from 2hp. It's not bad but it's not that immediate to play like the Vector I got now. The MIDIBox is nearly feature riddled and clumpsy to use. On the other side Thorsten is still very active developing it further... Anyway, I am glad that I sold it and landed on ther vector after some other seqs....

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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by revtor » Sat Aug 29, 2020 5:20 pm

Been using this a few sessions now and I am really loving it. The hardware feels amazing, solid, heavy, responsive, fast, tight. Full pro piece of kit, the Midiphy offering. I’ve mainly been getting to grips with the basics of creating tracks for notes and drums. So far, everything has been very shallow, menu-wise which is great. Essentially everything is one or two button presses away. A great UI evolution from the Wilba panel to the Midiphy 4+

(I keep on editing the following wall of text..)

So Cirklon vs Midibox.. (I had a P3 and an early Cirklon) trying to compare just based on features /specs...
Cirklon can run more tracks (64), Midibox -16. Both have a max of 16 bars or 256 steps in length for general use, but Cirklon has a unique pattern type that can be as long as memory can hold notes. Midibox works at 384 ppqn, Cirklon 192 ppqn. Cirklon has “bar edit” mode which lets you set repeats, resets etc per bar, a sort of mini song mode within a specific track. Midibox can listen for incoming midi notes to play sections of a track- lots of fun. MbSeq also has a track layer parameter “Nth” which commands a tracks behavior every certain number of bars, and also Per track you can specify repeats, move forward, back etc based on # of steps. Kinda sorta similar to Cirklons accumulators. Cirk has something called “CK” tracks which can be any length up to memory limit, up to 16 note polyphonic. Full event list for micro editing. Midibox has no tracks like these, but tracks can up up to 16 notes per step (depending on track length) , so chords/polyphony can be recorded or programmed. CKLN has a real drum grid visual editor (like tr 707) which is nice for those who want that. Cirklon is designed with a bunch of ways that tracks can modify each other, (aux events, the accumulators) and this can get complex fast. Midibox has four internal “buss tracks” that allow internal routing so tracks can affect each others transposition, arpeggiator, or chord settings. Midibox can be almost completely controlled via cc’s and NRPN, (send em through the buss tracks) so just like Cirklon things can get pretty convoluted and derivative with determined programming. MidiBox also has a highly evolved arpeggiator, built in chord creation/modification workflow and MIDI effects, all of which Cirklon does not have. With MidiBox you do not need to set up instrument definitions, so it is quicker to get jamming right off the bat, but you can label tracks, patterns, drum channels, etc. if you want or need. The screen on Cirklon can provide some nice information at times, like the drum grid, but also leads towards more menu depth and digging. I never had any stability issues with cirklon or P3 and I’ve had none with this MidiBox yet either. I cannot really comment on live recording jamming with the MidiBox yet since I have not done that. Same goes for track morphing, the MIDI effects, arpeggiator use, chords (over 100 predefined chords in the box), or force to scale (over 120 scales on board) can’t comment since I haven’t gone there yet.
Midibox has an onboard midi router with 8 paths separate from the sequencer.

Both amazing machines, both have their strengths over each other. Both designed to empower the users to explore and program their way to amazing sequences that would not happen by sitting down at your keyboard or simply assigning notes step by step. Both take a bit time to get comfortable with, but to get going initially they’re quick.
I really feel that the MidiBox is more immediate and gives users tons of amazing avenues to explore beyond most step sequencers, even Cirklon. Midibox is less than half the price.. BUT Hard to find used or prepare to solder for a week straight. Cirklons come up used pretty regularly -beware the scalpers.

Of course there are giant obstacles with both. Midi box is essentially DIY only, and Cirklon has a year long waiting list.

For me, I soon will jump into the arpeggiator /chords side of things, This is where the loop back tracks really come into play for sequences that Morph in very controlled, rigid ways or random endless permutation style changes. Hoping the UI stays clear and shallow as I jump into the deeper water...

Playing with that will be next week, and then I will start to get things going using patterns (groups of 4 tracks -similar to scenes in Cirklon speak) in song mode.

-Steve
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revtor
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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by revtor » Mon Sep 07, 2020 10:35 am

Thought I’d post this here, it may reach a few users or potential users..

Update for the hardware, new keycaps and custom made light shields to keep individual buttons more separate from the lightsoruce of their neighboring buttons. And rack ears now available.

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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by ear ear » Mon Sep 07, 2020 12:35 pm

revtor wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 5:20 pm
Cirklon can run more tracks (64), Midibox -16.
You don't mention that the MIDIbox sequencer has up to 16 layers per track, depending on the track type. See the User Manual, Track Event Configuration for more details. Nor do you mention Groove Templates. :guinness:
He throws the ink first and works out what it is later. "I've got to turn that into parrots." - Ralph Steadman

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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by revtor » Mon Sep 07, 2020 12:59 pm

Yeah I couldn’t list off everything, just trying to do more of a comparison type of thing.

I’m assuming that anyone interested would realize that any track can be any length up to 256, and any run at division based on any number clock ticks (not just /16 /8 /4, etc) and run in any direction and any step could have any probability. The list goes on and on.

Fun pattern generation tools: midi effects, Groove templates (customizable shuffle/swing patterns),”live patterns” (functionality like MPC BeatRepeat), Euclidean generator, robotizer, Humanizer...

Despite all these options, it is so simple to turn it on, put a track on a certain midi channel and lay in a basic pattern by hand or from any midi controller or midi source you have. I’ve wanted one for years and finally with this new kit, bit the bullet. Game changer.
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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by RickKleffel » Fri Sep 25, 2020 10:58 am

What's the difference between this and the V4, beyond the interface?

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revtor
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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by revtor » Fri Sep 25, 2020 12:49 pm

Rick the V4+ gives the different UI so besides workflow changes, afaik, V4+ Brings:
-cc layers on drum tracks,
-more (up to 32) CV and gate outputs,
-CV out calibration per track.

Dig in here for details:
http://www.ucapps.de/midibox_seq_changelog.html
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latigid on
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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by latigid on » Fri Sep 25, 2020 1:29 pm

V4+ can only run on STM32F4. V4 can run on LPC17 and STM32F1 (less memory available). The changelog is the best place to look!

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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by RickKleffel » Fri Sep 25, 2020 3:55 pm

This is really helpful, thanks. I will be joining the MIDIBOX community. Saves a bundle over Cirklon....I'm still in line after some three years. But mostly, this offers the features I've been gear lusting for!

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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by roya » Sat Nov 21, 2020 4:35 pm

Completed mine a few days ago, I guess it took me around 15 hours / 4 days to build. This is not a hard build at all (for those afraid of soldering), you have an amazing video made by Peter that will take you thru all the steps needed to complete the build. When completed you have a professional sequencer which is built like a tank! When I use it now it’s hard to believe it’s a diy kit to be honest... feels like a well made German hardware ;) it’s obvious that a lot of work has been made to pick the best parts (encoders, switches , caps, even screws).

I HIGHLY recommend building one. I was told that people with 0 soldering experience completed the build successfully and 100% of people who purchased the kit completed it.

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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by Nelson Baboon » Sat Nov 21, 2020 8:29 pm

all that means, really, is that most people have a pretty good idea whether they have any diy skills, and simply get one of the recommended builders to build one for them. I have to laugh, really, at the idea of me spending thousands of hours trying to learn to solder, finding the space to set up a station to do this, trying/failing/trying/failing, etc, when I can get someone to build one for me. you couldn't pay me enough to try to build one of these. At least the midibox community seems open now to this path, whereas years ago, there was some extreme condescension if you didn't want to build one. I mean, putting it another way - why the fuck should I spend huge hours trying to learn something that I have no aptitude for, and don't enjoy?

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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by Voltcontrol » Sun Nov 22, 2020 2:59 am

Nelson Baboon wrote:
Sat Nov 21, 2020 8:29 pm
all that means, really, is that most people have a pretty good idea whether they have any diy skills, and simply get one of the recommended builders to build one for them. I have to laugh, really, at the idea of me spending thousands of hours trying to learn to solder, finding the space to set up a station to do this, trying/failing/trying/failing, etc, when I can get someone to build one for me. you couldn't pay me enough to try to build one of these. At least the midibox community seems open now to this path, whereas years ago, there was some extreme condescension if you didn't want to build one. I mean, putting it another way - why the fuck should I spend huge hours trying to learn something that I have no aptitude for, and don't enjoy?
I’m not as agressive about not feeling the desire to learn soldering, on the contrary, I’m quite sad that I’m not hard enough on myself for seeing things through to gain such a useful skill.
I do share the rest of your sentiment and think all diy projects should have a recommended/trusted builders list.
Gaun Yersel!

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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by revtor » Sun Nov 22, 2020 12:20 pm

Roya, after you get acquainted with your new seq, please post any cool uses or patches you enjoy.

Just got back to mine a day ago and am working through the demo projects and features....
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Re: Midibox seq v4+

Post by roya » Mon Nov 23, 2020 9:18 pm

Will do! I really really enjoy this sequencer so far.

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