APC40 Step Sequencer standalone (with reverb, delay and 4 buffers for loop recording)
OK so this was a project I worked on back in May 2010 and thought people might be interested. I realise the Akai push probably has much of this functionality now ( I haven’t checked it out to be fair), but at the time I was pretty chuffed with this as it was one of my first patches.
There seems to be many patches for the APC40 via Max4Live but this was specifically designed as a standalone app and runs using just Max or the Runtime application. Admittedly I have not used Max for along time but recently have been feeling inspired and have just reinstalled and have some new projects on the go. However, I found my old patch and felt that it was wasted simply sitting on my hard drive existing only as a series of 0’s and 1’s. It may be useful or entertaining for other people so I thought it worth sharing here.
Anyway here it is (info copied over from my blog at toxicdwarf.wordpress.com)
Through Max/Msp this controller has now been adapted to act as an 8 step sequencer, primarily designed as a drum machine, but any sample can be used. It makes use of the controllers matrix of clip launch buttons as the step sequencer with BPM control, and the clip stop buttons as trigger pads, for live input. The five rows of clip launch buttons allow for 5 samples to be sequenced at a time, each with it’s own dedicated filter (filter type, cutoff, gain and ‘q’ value all controlled with rotary knobs), volume slider and level meter. They can all also be routed through a delay (with variable delay time , quantized or by millisecond, and variable feedback), and/or a reverb, both controlled using the rotary knobs. Output from the sequencer has a master volume slider and level meter. It also provides 4 timesynced buffers to record your loops to, and keep layering up. The buffers are all synced to the sequencer, so recording and playback is all in time. The live trigger pads all have independant volume control (rotary sliders) and level meters – they can be routed through delay and reverb too. The buffers all feed into a master buffer volume control too. The 2 master volume controls then output through the controllers crossfader allowing ease of switching between sequencer and buffer outputs, or playing both simultaneously. All the LED’s are working too (after lots of experimenting). The record arm row of buttons light up in order following the position of the step sequencer, the matrix lights up to indicate which triggers are active, the activator and solo rows are used to control routing to the delay and reverb (and light up accordingly) and all the rotary knobs use LED’s to indicate the output value.
This patch has been a lot of hard work to produce, but i have enjoyed experimenting along the way, and been having fun playing with the finished patch (i have some amendments i like to implement at a later date). I came up against some infuriating problems along the way, other wise it would be a 16 step sequencer with time variable buffers, although i did manage to get these features up and running (to some degree), but with the 16 step sequencer i couldn’t get the LED’s working properly when switching views (The APC40’s matrix of clip launch buttons is 5 x 8). Also i did try setting the buffers to playback at different speed (Full speed reverse, half speed reverse, half speed, full speed and double speed, but because of the way I set the ‘sfplay’ object to record the loops would gradually slip out of time. This is something I plan to fix and implement.
A readme with more detailed instructions is incorporated into a patcher in presentation view.
Apart from the APC40 hardware the entire project is made using Max 5