sequencer for "purposively" composing melodies

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ratchet
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Post by ratchet » Fri Feb 01, 2019 1:39 am

Rene 2? With selectable states, programmable and selectable quantiser, three tracks and many CV/MOD functions it can achieve most or all of what you want.

It is a very powerful update to the original Rene. There is a bit of a learning curve (I am still on it) but I believe anything that provides the functionality you are seeking will be the same in that respect. Having said that Rene 2 can also be immediate if you don't want to dive too deep.

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Post by morrison23usa » Fri Feb 01, 2019 2:24 am

+1 for Rene v2. Just got one and can vouch for ratchet's comments.

A really cool thing is that you can send CV in to move the sequence through the scale you've got programmed in. Like move it up a third, or whatever to basically outline a chord change without retuning. HUGE upgrade from v1!

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Post by vrfats » Fri Feb 01, 2019 5:02 am

The hermod has caught my interest. Can it also double as a polyphonic midi to CV converter? I like the vibe of a midi in / CV recorder etc. I

Anybody own one and have anything to say about the workflow, shortcomings and interface? Could I record different sequences from ext CV and switch between them with gates?

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Post by Ceres » Fri Feb 01, 2019 11:29 am

Anyone tried both an ER-101 and a Nerdseq? Both of these interest me but I would like to know which people think is more intuitive, easy to work with. Both look powerful but potentially intimidating to figure out.
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Post by brandonlogic » Fri Feb 01, 2019 12:06 pm

Ceres wrote:Anyone tried both an ER-101 and a Nerdseq? Both of these interest me but I would like to know which people think is more intuitive, easy to work with. Both look powerful but potentially intimidating to figure out.
I can’t speak for the 101 but the nerd may look intimidating but it’s really not, once you have a basic understanding of how trackers work. There are more complex/deeper features to lean but it’s pretry easy to get stated writing sequences. The display makes it so easy to see what’s going on, and navigate.

You can think of it like Ableton’s clip launch view, where you have a grid of patterns and you can launch a row of patterns or just a pattern on a particular track. And you can chain patterns together. It’s very flexible. Sequences are not tied to specific tracks. Any patten can be placed on any track in any order.

Check the nerdseq thread, there’s been some great tutorial videos there lately by user SonicVoltage (start with the first in his series).

Working on it does feel a little like working on an excel spread sheet, but if you can get past that, it really is an outstanding sequencer, and very active firmware development.

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Post by -S.L- » Fri Feb 01, 2019 3:45 pm

Ceres wrote:Anyone tried both an ER-101 and a Nerdseq? Both of these interest me but I would like to know which people think is more intuitive, easy to work with. Both look powerful but potentially intimidating to figure out.
I had the ER101/102, I have the NerdSeq.

The NerdSeq beats the ER101 on every single possible levels, that I can think of.

it has a BIG screen
it has more outputs
i'm not using it but it has a sampler player as a bonus.
it's cheaper than a 101/102 combo, just watche SonicVoltage videos about both, you'll quickly have a brain explosion after watching the complexity of the 102 expander for simple things....
it has a more intuitive UI even thou you never worked on a tracker before (like me)
the work flow is overall way easier and more intuitive, even thou there is also a learning curve too, i'll admit that.

it's a product that has been released a few years later than the ER101, so it sort of covers the flaws of the 101...

if there was an ER101 V.2, with a bigger screen and a less headache procedure to work with (i.e impossible to remember buttons combo to archive simple things etc...), I'd say it's 50/50.

but right now....

in anyway, the VERY BEST sequencer for "purposively" composing melodies is...... a DAW.

in my opinion, sequencers in eurorack should remain fun and immediate, rather than dealing with small screen and combo buttons nightmarre.

as said by someone ealier, you can have very cool and easy way to make music with simple sequencer like a a154/155 plus some seq switches, CV switches and so on. FUN it will be, rewarding it will be. :sb:

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Max CircleFade
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Post by Max CircleFade » Fri Feb 01, 2019 4:20 pm

Hey everyone! Just came across this post, I'm designing an eurorack sequencer with a 7inches touchscreen

It's kind of different to the other sequencers, don't know where it's going to go from there haha!
It looks like this:

Image
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Post by MoogCloud » Fri Feb 01, 2019 4:46 pm

We are so fortunate to have a lot of options these days. My sequencer for deliberately composing a melody is the OD ER-101. The precision and ease with which each note, each step can be handled is quite remarkable. :yay:

Now that is not my choice for playing live. Old school sequencers like the GRP R24 are easy to manipulate in a live setting as is the Metropolis.

I am very curious about the Nerdseq though. :guinness:
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Post by deke » Wed Feb 06, 2019 2:06 pm

The tracker interface is interesting. I found a number of free Mac apps that, I think, will let me determine whether or not this kind of interface is right for me. PC and Linux available too (see links below). Might not be exact match, but what other sequencer has a user interface you can kind of check out like this? Kind of cool.

https://woolyss.com/chipmusic-chiptrackers.php?s=mac
http://cdm.link/2018/04/90s-alive-free- ... racker-ii/

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Re: sequencer for "purposively" composing melodie

Post by electricanada » Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:55 pm

Aaronautical001 wrote:Hi all,
I realise there are many sequencer threads, but I'm looking for some recommendations for a sequencer that will facilitate my approach to melody composition.

I'd also be interested to hear how others compose melodies, as my approach feels somewhat laborious.

I have both Rene and the VB VG8 combo, both of which I love. However Rene is limited in terms of key changes, and I find VG8 a bit on the fiddly side. Unfortunately, I've not really found VB to be useful for purposely programming notes.

I'm very much a beginner in music, and have no formal training; the approach to composition I currently take is to use a piano app on the iPad and compose a melody from that, right it down and program it into a sequencer. So whilst the VB is great for "nudging", I've really struggled to be able to easily program specific notes (this is what I mean when I mention purposively composing).

An ideal sequencer for me would include:
An easy way to select specific notes
Key changes
Multiple QCV outs
Range of scales
Ideally longer than 16 steps or a way or easily programming longer more complex sequences
Reset would be nice

Is there anything that would fit the bill? For those that use it, how do people use a keyboard for composition? Does anyone record cvs from a key board?


Thoughts and recommendations?
Why do you want to do this in modular? It's not really the best platform for a highly-controlled approach to composition.
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Re: sequencer for "purposively" composing melodie

Post by atte » Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:53 am

electricanada wrote: Why do you want to do this in modular? It's not really the best platform for a highly-controlled approach to composition.
I have to disagree.

Obviously if you want 100% control a DAW is the best option, but if you want complete control over some part of the music and want the instrument to act like a second musician, with it's own free will, the modular is just perfect.

The fun (and hard) part is figuring out which aspects of the music you want control over and which to delegate to the patch.

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Re: sequencer for "purposively" composing melodie

Post by Paranormal Patroler » Thu Feb 07, 2019 5:03 am

atte wrote:
electricanada wrote: Why do you want to do this in modular? It's not really the best platform for a highly-controlled approach to composition.
I have to disagree.

Obviously if you want 100% control a DAW is the best option, but if you want complete control over some part of the music and want the instrument to act like a second musician, with it's own free will, the modular is just perfect.

The fun (and hard) part is figuring out which aspects of the music you want control over and which to delegate to the patch.
Quoted for truth.

Another solution is the Modcan Touch Sequencer. It used to be a very solid suggestion but it's been years since it's been manufactured I think. Still easy to find and worth looking into.

Big screen lots of functionality, you can have up to four sequences and lots of playability.
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Post by SinkWhole » Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:50 am

Outside of the rack an Elektron A4 mk1 or Analog Keys are pretty solid purchases. 4 configurable outs (cv/gate/clock etc), ton of sequencer memory, spacious Ui, trig conditions, arpeggiator, send euro through the fx/filter/drive etc + you get a 4 voice/channel analog synth/sequencer that’s easy sync’d to your rack. I’ve seen used A4 mk1’s going for as low as around £500 these days...

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Re: sequencer for "purposively" composing melodie

Post by electricanada » Thu Feb 07, 2019 12:12 pm

atte wrote:
electricanada wrote: Why do you want to do this in modular? It's not really the best platform for a highly-controlled approach to composition.
I have to disagree.

Obviously if you want 100% control a DAW is the best option, but if you want complete control over some part of the music and want the instrument to act like a second musician, with it's own free will, the modular is just perfect.

The fun (and hard) part is figuring out which aspects of the music you want control over and which to delegate to the patch.
Fair enough, but OP seems to want to be able to compose in a sequencer. Why do this in modular? Much easier and less expensive to do it in a computer.

For me, modular sequencers are best for combining with CV to get happy accidents. If I had a strong idea for a melody, I would never try to do it in modular.
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Post by Aaronautical001 » Sun Feb 10, 2019 5:17 am

Been out of the country for a bit, so haven't been able to post. Just wanted to thank everyone for their thoughts on this, it's been educational for me. I guess as some context to the request; modular synth is my first instrument, never used a DAW, and would prefer not to use a computer as I associate it too much with work rather than fun...

So, I have learned:
I need to accept limitations of hardware sequencers
There are a number of options out there that I hadn't considered
Perhaps I should revise my opinions on using a computer/DAW

I'm certainly enjoying the sequencers I have (I particularly like VB as a cv input to Rene ), but perhaps composition is not the way to go with modular....

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Re: sequencer for "purposively" composing melodie

Post by -S.L- » Sun Feb 10, 2019 6:21 am

electricanada wrote:
atte wrote:
electricanada wrote: Why do you want to do this in modular? It's not really the best platform for a highly-controlled approach to composition.
I have to disagree.

Obviously if you want 100% control a DAW is the best option, but if you want complete control over some part of the music and want the instrument to act like a second musician, with it's own free will, the modular is just perfect.

The fun (and hard) part is figuring out which aspects of the music you want control over and which to delegate to the patch.
Fair enough, but OP seems to want to be able to compose in a sequencer. Why do this in modular? Much easier and less expensive to do it in a computer.

For me, modular sequencers are best for combining with CV to get happy accidents. If I had a strong idea for a melody, I would never try to do it in modular.
I'll second that, my view exactly.

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Post by MoogCloud » Sun Feb 10, 2019 12:09 pm

Just for grins I forced myself to use the two sequencer tracks from the Ornament & Crime Sequins app. It was more playable than I imagined. It will likely retain its place as a slot in my rack. Of course, only my ER-101 is my only hope for a precision played pre programmed precise melodic sequence.

I’m glad you started this thread as a lot of good ideas have been shared by many folks.


Edited: to change reference from ER-301 to ER-101
Last edited by MoogCloud on Thu Mar 28, 2019 10:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by induktor » Sun Feb 10, 2019 12:59 pm

I'm a bit of a sequencer junky. At the moment I have:

Cirklon with CVIO and DMUX
Nerdseq
Varigate 8+ and Voltage Block
Varigate 4
Mimetic Digitalis
Ableton Live with Push 2 driving ES-3/ES-5

For deliberate composition on the hardware side the Cirklon and Nerdseq are the winners for me. The Varigates are great for rhythmic work but rather fiddly for melodic stuff although the scale quantize feature helps a bit. The Mimetic Digitalis is capable of limited CV only melodic stuff but note entry via one knob is a bit much so I use it as a modulation sequencer for the most part. Then of course there's Live with Push 2 which is very powerful. Bang for buck I'd say Nerdseq is the one on the pure hardware side. It's appearance belies how easy it is to use considering the amount of features on tap. I'm digging the gamepad support.

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Post by brandonlogic » Mon Feb 11, 2019 12:23 pm

vonstirlitz wrote:
brandonlogic wrote:
BrokenBo wrote:for really specific composition there is only one sequencer:
:lol: Its a great one, but it’s not the ‘only one’ there are others... Nerdseq is basically equaly as complex and flexible except it has a better display to actually visualize the complexity and navigate around in a much more intuitive and quick way IMO.

I love the nerdseq for its incredible flexibility. And for its ability to compose and arrange entire songs with ease.

I also love the flxs1. It’s actually my go to sequencer for melodies for a number of reasons. While the nerdseq is incredibly flexible with possibilities, the flxs1 provides great features more focused specifically on mellody creation and is very inspiring and FAST to work with. Most importantly it’s an arpeggio powerhouse. With powerful arpeggio settings per-step (arp length, octave span, arp speed, chord, arp direction/style, etc) you can create incredibly interesting and complex sequences very quickly.

I love both these sequencers, I have tried many and owned and sold a few. These two are the ones I landed on and am keeping.

Couldn’t be more happy with this combo. I use flxs1 mostly for mellody sequencing and the nerdseq mostly for sequencing samples on the er301 and percussion sequencing. Both have midi in and out and sync (nerd requires expander) which is nice.

Both these sequencers also have a dedicated modulation output on every channel which is amazing, a huge bonus.
Are you me? This is the setup I settled wirh too. Nerdseq for beats, sample triggering, and overall structure, FLXS1 for melodies (its really versatile with cv manipulation of arps).

And both do reserve duty for sequenced cv modulation.

Perfect combo so far, notwithstanding both are works in progress.
HAHA yes! If i have a melody stuck in my head that I want to write a modular sequence for, FLXS1 is always my go to. its so fast and easy to write with and get ideas down. 64 steps is essential too. so many sequencers are based on 16 steps, that just doesn't cut it for me.

Really excited about one of the coming features- randomized modulation channels. FLXS1 modulation channels are a lot of fun but require a bit of programing. be able to randomize values on every step, that will be huge! I will use those modulation channels a lot more i'm sure.

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Post by honeyb » Mon Feb 11, 2019 12:50 pm

porphyrion wrote:There are alternative panels - both grey and black- available for the NerdSeq. No need for drama.
What do you mean "no need for drama"-- haven't you read the forum rules?

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Post by windchill » Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:51 pm

The Five12 Vector Sequencer is what I've been waiting for. I think it sits in just the right place for this sort of thing.

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Post by jmax313 » Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:09 pm

6667 wrote:Watching a few nerdseq demos and it looks pretty incredible as its basically having an entire mini tracker in a module but it absolutely needs an alternate panel... why the pacman chiptune panel font/logo aesthetic???? :bang: :bang: :bang: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana: :deadbanana:
Damn. :lol:

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Post by tibbon » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:40 pm

I've been working on figuring this out myself. I had a Rene 1, Varigate 8+ / Voltage Block and ER-101/102.

The Rene is great for jamming on. Very immediate feeling. At the same time, I find it a little difficult to logic about sometimes, perhaps due to the strange text and modes I can never remember what they do. "G . mod" vs "G x mod" isn't something my brain holds well. Keeping it for fun quick menu-free jams.

The Varigate 8 is really fun, but it's interface is a bit wonky sometimes. I've had to reset my modular power more than once for getting it into some blinking / mute mode that I couldn't clear with any combination of keypresses. But the thing that really gets me about it is how hard it is to program an intentional bassline even PLUS the fact that I can't see the state of a drum sequence - only the probabilities of one track at a time. In the process of selling it for that reason. I really want to be a little more visual at times, and also have a better logic of what things are coming up.

The Voltage Block is great. I love modulating my BI modules with it. Keeping.

ER-101/102 are freaking genius units. Yet again, the inability to see the state of multiple tracks at once kills me for a 4-track sequencer. If I'm trying to make something harmonic it's just too much for me. While the interface is genius in many ways (the physical layout is second to none), I was always perplexed at remembering weird little taps, double taps, things to remember with a single-character display, etc. The ER-102 I think got no use from me aside from going through a tutorial. I just wasn't able to wrap my mind around it. I've sold it, and I'm sure the next person will absolutely love the pair. They are great, just not great for me.

I picked up a NerdSeq and Eloquencer this week. I'm excited that the Nerdseq will let me visualize what's happening with 6 tracks at once, plus has reasonably named things so I don't have to constantly stare at a manual and wiki pages.

The Eloquencer I'm hoping will be a somewhat more robust drum sequencer for me, and also a little more obvious about some of it's modes. As far as I can tell from videos and using one for a few minutes at a store it's far more obvious; like a Machinedrum or something, but yet better.

I also have an ES-3 that I can hook up with Live or Protools. It's such a good idea, but for some reason just doesn't grab me like it should for sequencing. I'm *always* fighting keeping clocks from my DAW synced up with the sequencers in Eurorack (it is 24ppq or 96ppq?) and Silent Way is just too confusing for me many days, and often goes well... silent on me, until I restart Protools or whatever. Just doesn't make my workflow go, although by all intuition it should.

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Post by jschussler » Wed Feb 13, 2019 1:06 am

Polyend Seq plus the Poly breakout for CV. Gets you most of what you're looking for, in particular long sequences that are easily visualized. It's physically large, but that's a benefit if you want to be able to see what's going on.

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Post by meinviggles » Wed Feb 13, 2019 5:16 am

Five12 Vector demo looking appropriate...

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