Analog(ish) Sequencer/Quantizer Module

I like the sequencers we have, but they each left me feeling like something was lacking. For my taste, I decided to make one the way I would like it to be. It turned out it was a really fun and challenging project to make a seq of my own.

It is more or less based on the analog designs of the tempo knobs of analog modular, wherein you dial in a tempo, and it is THAT tempo +/- a little variance cuz it is a dial and a notch. That is kinda how I approximated the BPM for mine.

It also has scale quantized knobs, which will be a little different, since everything in the library is based on 1/o, and this module’s knobs are divided into 12 equal steps, making it not an EXACT mathematical quant for the rest of the library, but I like the imperfect way it turned out.

It kinda feels like using a KORG SQ-1 or the dial on my Volca Modular, and think the way it feels is kinda what makes analog cool, cuz of the drift of things and the small inaccuracies here and there that add a bit of character. Check out my demo and the module is below it. :smiley:
Analog Quant:Seq Demo.audulus (112.2 KB)
Analog Modeled, Quantized Sequencer v1.0.audulus (11.4 KB)

Edit: just to be clear, the BPM is calculated correctly, but what I mean is that I didn’t want decimals messing with my display, so the tempo is a rounded number for each step up or down.

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You will have to excuse me but I am one of those people who misses easy jokes. What is going on here? Suppose you were selling this. What is your sales pitch?

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@futureaztec I sorta built this module for me, and with other builder/tinkerer types that deep dive into modules and see how they work. The first thing you will notice, if you are analyzing my work, is that the tempo knob is going to be inaccurate/slightly estimated, as I just ceil(x)'d the numbers, cuz I didn’t want to have decimals, and I wanted to emulate the way you would use a knob on something like this:


The little pink knob that says “speed” is for setting tempo. It is not precise, which is what I had in mind, as I built this. Mine has a number, but when you have it set to 120 (or anything, this is just the example cuz it is what mine is set to, currently), unless you are extremely precise, or lucky, it will be an approximation, as it can only be exactly 120 on the dial at exactly 120.

Also, I purposely put the number in the center so you can’t see what the value is while turning it, giving it another sort of analog trait in which you are dialing tempo based more on sound, and the number is more just for info, thereafter. I hope this is making sense…
It is also capable of being (a simplistic version of) your main clock in a patch, due to the tempo indication and the gate output! :wink:

On top of that, I added a scale quant for each step, as you will notice that the knobs for each step are x/12, making them quantized to traditional western musical 12 semitones. This is also an approximation, as I understand the whole Lib to be meant for 1/o, which (unless I misunderstood) makes each octave more of a 1/10 scale.

This makes my quantizer values more of an estimate, as well, if you can call it that. You wouldn’t want to add a value node and try to say, “this dialed in note is going to be an A#3…” or some other such thing, since for obvious mathematical reasons, 1/12 and 1/10 are slightly skewed differently.

The point of all of this was really not to make a new seq/quant that everyone would want to have. It was more of a - "here’s an analog(ish) module that does scale quant and 8 step sequence with tempo, but it is more of a novelty that some will be impressed by, some will use, and those that don’t get it or aren’t interested in the programming logic or quirkiness of the whole approach will shrug their shoulders and move on.

I had you in mind, personally, as someone I thought might be able to find a fun use for it, but if this doesn’t interest you, that is fine, as I am still quite happy with the way it turned out, and I learned a whole lot of new programmatic logic along the way to building this from a blank slate. I don’t know if you would call that a sales pitch, but I hope I have sufficiently explained my eccentric vibe I was on when I put this together.

If you haven’t downloaded it, take a look, and maybe you will find that my intuition was in line with your way of building things that look, work, and sound really neat. If not, I’m sure I will make something else at some point you will find to be impressive and fun to work with. Thanks for stopping to take a look and inquire about my post, also. I hope you are having a great evening! :smile:

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So we are chatting live this never happens which is in itself interesting…I can’t help but skim your words. 3 sentences in and I felt irritated…now I am thinking…

I think it is irritating because I do not want to know about nodes or expressions or decimals. I want this to be at namm and I am some jerk who walks up but has purchasing power. I own a giant company and you need to sell this or you will loose your job.

What is it for?

I even want to take it further and say that I am loosing interest in this forum altogether. It feels cold.

I think modular itself is in danger.

Can’t help you bro…If that is the case, I quit. If you don’t want it or don’t get it, it won’t hurt me. I do this for the fun of it. Not trying to be a jerk, but your aggressive reply is giving me anxiety and I really don’t need this. I’m about positivity and openness to think about things a different way. You’re not really being very chill about this. Enjoy your evening. Peace.

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no no no.

Look, there is something dark here. I have spent hours and hours and hours on things. But this programmer theme keeps coming up. I can stretch myself to accommodate that, but I am the 1%. Everyone will love you here. It is me who is the outsider.

In a sense, it is me who is going to get burned. Right?

I will just keep writing for a moment because people are going to read this and many people are attracted to negative judgements. Normally I would spend maybe 10 hours on a module working with it trying to make “fan patches.” The issue is there is some insider game between programmers that, seems to me, is rather limited.

Regarding the anxiety I was just back and forth with the host of podular modcast about anxiety. I get it too. It’s hell. Absolute hell. But, really, at the end of the day I can only work with myself in that realm.

The darkness I find is just the same darkness in academic philosophy in a classroom. Everyone is right in there own head. Once things are on the table, the reason can be worked at logically. I am not sure what bothered you. Again, I have never live chatted like this on the forum here. I was taking a risk, because I feel my own interest flagging.

Last thought: Even before I saw your post I was considering shifting my focus. I think it is a loss, but I can see too large of a gap between the depths of synthesis and the reach of music. If I knew ahead of time any of this would cause you pain, I would have just left a heart beside your post and moved on.

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To quote the dictionary of obscure sorrows:

n . the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own—populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness—an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk.

Everybody is at a different point in that life. Some of us are starting out, while others are about to move on, and still others are hitting their stride. I think it’s important to respect all three phases, knowing that our time is limited and it’s important to enjoy every step where possible.

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The Weather Broke (FAD Fan Patch).audulus (716.4 KB)

  • added more reverb, changed a delay sync to x16 in stead of x4, applied low cut to final reverb, adjusted VCA to lean more logarithmically.
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Packed my ass to a cafe and blissed out for an hour @stevo3985 FWIW. Excellent module, getting me away from my habits.

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I think the SQ-1 actually quantizes the bpm in integers so if you wanted to replicate it a little more closely I would recommend the following patching change:

one small change

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@futureaztec nobody is gonna burn you here, and if they did, I would be among the first, if not the first to come to your defense. You are a good person, I respect you, and I like your vibes. If you look at the edit above on my first post, I used the word “friend” in the description of the edit.

It was a combination of things that just put my head in a negative place where I didn’t wanna be after the rather terrible day I had in which I was nearly destroyed by a rushing businessman in a Mercedes on his way to someplace clearly very important cuz he blew the stop sign at 50+ MPH and I nearly ended up under the car, where my board actually did end up, from where I had to drag it out to ride off.

Then I got home and I’m sure you didn’t mean it like this, but it came off like you were “Steve Jobs’ing” me and telling me that if I couldn’t simplify and sell you my idea, that it sucked, and it wasn’t worth the hours of hard work I poured into it. The word “irritated” and the mention that all you were doing was skimming my words was just a little too much for me after the day I had and it just dragged me right to the bottom of the negativity lake I try so hard to stay out of. I just didn’t have it in me to try and discuss the justification for my building it. Now that I have had some time to process, I’m good, we’re cool, and it ain’t a thing cuz I know you had no ill intent.

And to address your idea that it is programmers taking over the artistic types and that you are somehow in the minority, I don’t think that is the right way to look at it at all: we are all musicians and programmers of varying skill levels, including you. I envy the talent I see all around me; I wish I had more artistic strength to offer, as well as more programmatic logic, but I try just to contribute to the forum with the strengths I do have to offer.

I feel like everyone does the same, but each offering different strengths. We are each unique, and I really like the item that @robertsyrett quoted, as I think everyone needs a reminder of this idea from time to time. It is something I certainly need to be reminded of every couple of years when I start wondering about what other people are thinking or doing and why they do or don’t do things that I would or wouldn’t or could or couldn’t do.

The point of all of this rambling is to say that without the brilliance of the great inventor, @taylor, and his main evangelist, @biminiroad this whole thing wouldn’t be here, and we would not have this great community or so many wonderful people I have come to really look up to and respect a great deal. That all started because of the intersection of art and technology, and I don’t think that they Have to be shackled together or mutually exclusive apart from one another. The middle of it all is where it’s at.

There is something magical in the muddy waters where all of it mixes, like the plants and wildlife that all are able to exist because of the Nile River delta we all learned about in school as kids. The water brings nutrients to the land and allows the habitat to flourish. That is truly how I feel about this app and this forum. I hope you will not give up on it/us, as I believe that this ecosystem is a delicate balance that is allowed to exist due to the presence of all of us who are active members, bringing our ideas, questions, answers and all the other great things that we bring to the table and it is mutually beneficial to all who are involved. Keep on doing what you do. You are gifted, as am I, (not trying to be egotistical in stating this, as I am just trying to make a point that all of us have a unique gift In our skills we bring to the table) and we all have something good to contribute, maybe some more than others in different ways.

In summary, very good things are happening here, and it is something great that we are all lucky enough to be a part of because of what we are a part of. I hope this is not too abstract. Be well, my friend. :slightly_smiling_face:

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The point about the programmer thing is that I do not believe math expressions lead to synthesis techniques. Sure, one could make the case, but I really enjoy the level of simulation, such that if you know how to work with the hardware, then you would know how to use Audulus. I see people pop up on here all the time and it looks like they want to build a synthesizer from scratch, then they fade away.

What I don’t see here are producers. At the same time I am happy to keep a lid on it :wink:

But I also want to urge some of the people here to move in that direction. I also keep picturing a few people working together in a way that the very forum platform could be shaped for collaboration.

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I still have yet to break through that wall beyond which I am making something that I am happy with on a level like I am when I mess with hardware. I get a mental block when trying to plan ahead and decided about mapping triggers and knobs to MIDI and having it turn out at a level that I am happy with like I am when I work with hardware (Which I rarely end up recording, anyway, but I hope to do more live modular jams). I do feel like having to think and plan too much kills my creativity sometimes. Gotta get better at that, and also should work on doing the virtual thing, or I will be broke haha


I know there is a seriously almost limitless potential here, but I have yet to harness it like you have. I did just buy an $80 electric guitar on a killer sale from Monoprice, and A3/A4 is my go to for all my effects processing. I am hopeful about having a real breakthrough though, and I do not disagree with your analysis of some of the newcomers. However, the perpetual crowd, the ones that have earned the same badges we have and higher, those are the ones I am referring to when I mention synthesists and programmers being one and the same, just varying levels of skill and focus.

All I have done is taken standard 4/4 house themes (which many people hate) and use mainly subtractive synthesis (which many people find dull) and loose myself in the joy of learning what the module makers have blessed us with. I feel as though I am training my ear, but the joy I perceive is a section of a larger vision – a small portion of an entire process.

A man looks at the sky and says, “what it would be like to be a God.” The sky answers, “Gods have godlike problems.” In that moment, there is a dawning of the fact that, being at home in the warmth of limitation is to own with gratitude the opportunity to climb hills at all.

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@robertsyrett That is really neat how you included the looping video to show how to make it better! I took your advice, and will post the changed version later tonight when I get home. Thanks for the pointer! :smiley:

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I never claimed to be a genius, so I am not ashamed to admit I was WAY off with the math. So I have deleted my last post to fix what I did so so wrong :confused:

Ok, let’s try this again…I kept thinking over the last few days about the math behind the standards we work with, as a community, and I finally figured it out. If 1 full turn of the knob == 1 octave, my original model was working in terms of 1/12 of a single note in a single octave, since I was dividing the output of the knob by 12. That is obviously not a whole lot of impressive range :joy:. It’s truly no wonder that there was almost no variance in the sound.

The second attempt to correct this was still marred by my thoughtful insistence that dividing by 12 had to be part of the equation. So in the “5 octave range” I thought I was providing, it was actually only 5/12 of a full octave. This was realized late last night as I was playing with settings, when I realized I was not able to reach the note above another one that was lower. I set the function node to -1 + x*3, and ”eureka!” I was able to set the knob in slight increments over 8 steps to cover 1/3 of the knob range, and hear it go through an octave. The -1 allows you to start an octave lower than your oscillator is set. Hooray!! So I’m not that dumb, just slow realizing some things when I am teaching myself :thinking:

The final thing of note, is that I thought I had followed @robertsyrett’s advice, but it turned out I may have implemented that in a prototype which got deleted or something, and I can’t recall how I made it work. I tried following what is depicted in his animation, but it throws off the whole step behavior that is meant to keep the sequencer cycling at the estimated amount of BPM that is displayed. So, now I have to figure out how to make that work as he described, but that is a problem for later. I just wanted to make sure to post the real corrected version so nobody started working with it and ended up thinking “Stevo is an idiot, this has nowhere near the amount of range that he described in his post”. Let me know what you think if you end up working with the new one. :slightly_smiling_face:

Analog Modeled, Quantized Sequencer v1.3.audulus (11.5 KB)

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