## Mutable Instruments Marbles Random Sampler

Cwejman, Livewire, TipTop Audio, Doepfer etc... Get your euro on!

Moderators: luketeaford, Joe., lisa, Kent

drinkcorpsevomit
Common Wiggler
Posts: 123
Joined: Fri Sep 11, 2015 12:55 pm
Location: Hell

### Mutable Instruments Marbles Random Sampler

[/img]

https://mutable-instruments.net/modules/marbles/

[video][/video]

Manual: https://www.mutable-instruments.net/mod ... es/manual/

18hp in size.

CONTROLLED CHAOS, REPEATABLE RANDOMNESS
Marbles is a source of random gates and voltages, which offers an extensive amount of (voltage) control on all the different flavors of randomness it produces.

The module gives the musician many different ways of imposing structure on the random events generated by the module: synchronization to external clocks, control of the repetition or novelty of the generated material, quantization of the voltages, or randomization of gates or voltages generated by traditional sequencers.

t: the random gate generator
Marbles either follows its own internal clock, or locks onto an adjustable multiplication/division of an external clock (or regular rhythmic pattern). This regular clock is perturbed by a process simulating an instrumentist playing along a click and trying to catch up on their errors - from perfect accuracy to complete chaos.

From this imperfect master clock, a 2-channel random rhythm is generated, using one of the following processes: random coin toss (similar to Branches), random ratcheting, or random drum pattern generation (similar to a randomly modulated Grids).

X: the random voltage generator
This generator produces 3 channels of random voltages, each of them clocked by the individual outputs of the t section, or by a common external clock signal.

Complete control on the distribution of the output voltages is provided: concentrated or spread-out, quantized or unquantized, smoothed or steppy, centered or biased towards a specific voltage. The same transformations can be performed on an external CV, for sample-and-hold or shift-register operation.

An auxiliary slowly fluctuating random voltage output (Y) is also available for self-patching fun!

A FEELING OF DÉJÀ-VU…
Marbles remembers the history of every recent clock deviation, rhythm or voltage it has generated. The DEJA VU knob on the panel controls the probability of reusing past material instead of sampling fresh random data.

You are thus given control on the feeling of repetition and structure in the generated random voltages and rhythms. At the extreme, the module no longer generates any novel values and loops over the same pattern (or a random permutation of it). And of course, this (variably) random looping can be performed on external CVs!
Last edited by drinkcorpsevomit on Fri Mar 30, 2018 5:53 am, edited 3 times in total.

beliefsystemrecords
Common Wiggler
Posts: 127
Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2014 4:02 am
[video][/video]

Catchthehare
Common Wiggler
Posts: 159
Joined: Sun Dec 11, 2016 9:06 am
Location: London

kurodama
Veteran Wiggler
Posts: 744
Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2013 2:50 am
Location: Italy
This is probably my favourite new MI module.
It made me change my mind on random-driven composition.

Did this while beta testing it:
https://soundcloud.com/papernoise/random-rings

hawkfuzz
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2000
Joined: Fri Feb 19, 2010 6:33 pm
Location: East Coast
Contact:
Quantized randomness w/programmable scales!!!!

Panel looks intimidating with 4 button, but I’m sure it’ll be easy to understand with practice.

DonKartofflo
The knob-twisting Hive Mind
Posts: 3014
Joined: Thu Feb 02, 2012 7:56 am
Location: Stuttgart, Germany / Bratislava, Slovakia
Oh lord!
Nelson Baboon wrote:Beware of people who tell you to smile.
FS:
Mutable Instruments Tides 1 120€
Addac sys 12U powered frame 200€

euromorcego
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2757
Joined: Sat Jan 18, 2014 6:22 am
... now the forum will go crazy

Catchthehare
Common Wiggler
Posts: 159
Joined: Sun Dec 11, 2016 9:06 am
Location: London
Have been eyeballing Chance, but this does look very very tasty.

sharkminusbear
Common Wiggler
Posts: 117
Joined: Wed May 31, 2017 9:00 am
Location: DC
Wow this is really cool, hard to wrap my head around everything. So it has a built in quantizer for the random voltages... the part that is crazy is it says “you play a short jam to program the scale” and it takes the most prominent notes... so cool. Already thinking of how awesome this would pair with rene.

Paranormal Patroler
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 10957
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2011 3:40 pm
Location: the Terminal beach
Damn, I'm only interested in half of it. All I can say is that this module is a beast. Happy to see that the MI style is now super hands-on but still packed with options.

This is one of those modules that will keep on giving. Congratulations on an excellent design. It is packed with functionality!
Last edited by Paranormal Patroler on Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

erstlaub
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2442
Joined: Tue Feb 18, 2014 6:31 pm
Location: Scotland
Contact:
Edit: Dammit you can't embed playlists.

[video][/video]

[video][/video]

[video][/video]

[video][/video]

[video][/video]

Here's (hopefully) a playlist of 5 videos of me tooling around with Marbles. It's a proper mindbender.

If you take all the smartest bits of a Turing Machine, SOU, A149, Brainseed, Branches, Grids and a pile of other modules and add buckets of cleverness you're still only halfway towards Marbles.

10/10 from me.

As ever, happy to try to explain anything I've made an arse of explaining in the video. The current piece in my sig (and a bunch more on my BC) have Marbles at their very core if you're looking for some 'in context' use.
Last edited by erstlaub on Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:47 am, edited 1 time in total.

richc90
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1118
Joined: Sat Dec 26, 2015 11:03 am
Location: Berlin
sharkminusbear wrote: So it has a built in quantizer for the random voltages... the part that is crazy is it says “you play a short jam to program the scale” and it takes the most prominent notes... so cool. Already thinking of how awesome this would pair with rene.
The quantisation might be counterintuitive. AFAIK, it works by playing a sequence of voltages into the module, which are recorded as a "scale". So, e.g., you could record sequence quantised to minor into Marbles. Once the recorded scale is in Marbles, you can quantise external voltages to that scale. But to get the most of it, you need an external way of creating quantised voltages to feed into Marbles in the first place: a keyboard or a sequencer with quantised outputs, e.g.

blinosynth
Veteran Wiggler
Posts: 520
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2011 9:05 am
Location: Portu Gunnu

Wow here they forgot to cover Stages
Cool

mgscheue
Veteran Wiggler
Posts: 718
Joined: Wed Jul 30, 2014 9:34 pm
Location: Michigan
It looks really interesting. I already have a Brainseed, Branches, Grids, and Turing machines (in the form of Ornament and Crime), and a TiNRS Tuesday, which makes me less tempted, but still... .

johny_gtr
Veteran Wiggler
Posts: 651
Joined: Wed May 13, 2015 8:49 am
Contact:
deleted
Last edited by johny_gtr on Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
modular percussion and scapes - http://ovod.bandcamp.com
mu modular space electronica https://7k-ok.bandcamp.com

sharkminusbear
Common Wiggler
Posts: 117
Joined: Wed May 31, 2017 9:00 am
Location: DC
blinosynth wrote:
Wow here they forgot to cover Stages
Cool
Yea I was going to point this out... might want to take that one down for now

tylrprtr
Common Wiggler
Posts: 232
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2016 5:05 pm
Location: Fort Worth, TX
blinosynth wrote:
Wow here they forgot to cover Stages
Cool
Did you grab a screenshot of it?

XAXAU
Common Wiggler
Posts: 113
Joined: Wed Sep 11, 2013 2:47 pm
Location: SWEDEN
Mmmmmmm, bhairav is my favourite scale!

starthief
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 4397
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2016 10:39 am
Location: St Louis, MO
Contact:
kurodama wrote:This is probably my favourite new MI module.
It made me change my mind on random-driven composition.

Did this while beta testing it:
https://soundcloud.com/papernoise/random-rings

I still think the third new one is my favorite , but I have come to love Marbles like I never expected to. It changed my mind about random too, and gently guided me to different approaches to sequencing.

https://soundcloud.com/starthief/marble-study

erstlaub
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2442
Joined: Tue Feb 18, 2014 6:31 pm
Location: Scotland
Contact:
Hopefully my quantisation video helps. It definitely took me a while to get my head around.

In a nutshell - you record the voltages you want in your 'scale' (of course these are dependant on your voltage source and could easily be a bunch of non quantized values).

The STEPS knob is then used to dial in how those values are output. Fully CCW gives you a smooooooth continusouly fluctuating voltage, at 12 o'clock it's stepped but not quantized to your 'scale' and then as you get progressively more CW it goes from using all your values to stripping it out to its exteremes and just giving you octaves/fifths at it's most CW.

It's a complex module but once you start to 'get' it, there is so much reward in there.

Fun fact: I had to make the additional video about locking and remixing external voltages a few weeks ago because after months of using this all the time, I'd completely forgotten that in addition to all of the stuff I'd been using it for, that you could use DEJA VU to lock in external sequences and then meddle with them. It was a proper WOAHHHH from me.

Catchthehare
Common Wiggler
Posts: 159
Joined: Sun Dec 11, 2016 9:06 am
Location: London
Ordered

pichenettes
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1352
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 5:07 am
Location: Paris
One thing that people can overlook from reading the description... And which is a bit technical...

Contrary to what's happening in the Turing machine, the "loop" doesn't store the actual voltages (or bits describing them), but a kind of "seed" to generate them. What this means is that while the sequence is looping, you can still apply transformations to it - like spreading the notes apart or shifting them up/down. Coupled with the built-in quantizer, it makes it easy to explore harmonically related variations of the same pattern.

kurodama
Veteran Wiggler
Posts: 744
Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2013 2:50 am
Location: Italy
Panel looks intimidating with 4 button, but I’m sure it’ll be easy to understand with practice.
It's a lot easier in practice than what it looks like, some of the buttons are mostly set-and-forget type, like selecting the range or selecting how the BIAS knob acts. My experience with it is that the way this works becomes second nature really quickly, it's a very playable module!

@Paranormal Patroler: wouldn't be too sure about the "half" thing. There's so many uses for this that I wouldn't rule out the second half. After all, you also need modulations don't you?

starthief
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 4397
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2016 10:39 am
Location: St Louis, MO
Contact:
sharkminusbear wrote:So it has a built in quantizer for the random voltages... the part that is crazy is it says “you play a short jam to program the scale” and it takes the most prominent notes... so cool. Already thinking of how awesome this would pair with rene.
Also you can have it sample CVs' "live" rather than using the random generator, so you can feed it sequences and it'll generate variations of those.

pichenettes
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1352
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 5:07 am
Location: Paris
Regarding the "half" thing: you reap several benefits by combining the two halves together in one same module.

In order to generate nice smooth random lines or curves, you need to know when the next clock tick is going to happen (so that you plan your ramping time in sync with the spacing with pulses). When the X section is internally clocked, the module doesn't have to make any guess as to what is going to happen, because it is already aware of the decisions that are going to be taken on the t side - and you get pretty random curves.

Another thing: the module detects some common self-patches; and in this case does the signal routing internally (in software, bypassing the hardware output and input). This eliminates some latency or inaccuracies.