Arduino Sequencer

•June 9, 2008 • Leave a Comment

So I’ve decided, after far too much procrastination, to build something out of my arduino, which will be a pocket sequencer/synth. At first i wanted to rip off the TB-303 programming style, but I’m thinking that less will be more, and i feel like making up a new interface. The box will consist of an arduino decmillia running an audio dsp as well as the control structure, and hopefully an lcd to display various types of info related to the programmed in patterns. i’m keeping the box simple and small, i really value portability and i want this to be a piece of gear i can use in a glitch set or to accompany lsdj in a set. Midi/lsdj sync may be a feature i explore too. On terms of a dsp i think i’m going to build a 4-bit DAC for really ugly crunchy sounds, if i can i may leave the audio up to some form of atari punk console type circuit controlled by a digital potentiometer of some kind, but this may be redundant and not needed if i have the pins to spare on my arduino. Last night i figured out 4051 multiplexing support, or at least what i needed it for, using the tutorial sketch from arduino playground as a basis, Sebastian Tomczak’s blog, Little-Scale was really helpful too. Basically my sketch reads in data from the 4051 (z pin) for each of 8 switches, the data comes in as random (or maybe not so random) values and each switch will read differently unless they are tied low. If low they are a zero, the main loop of the sketch checks one after another then starts over again, and if their state is low, then it writes it as a 1 if higher then zero. This will be the status byte that the dsp reads to determine whether a note is on or off. That’s all i’ve got so far but i think progress will occur quickly, i’ll post pics soon. 



•May 30, 2008 • 1 Comment

This is old news by a couple of days but I’m still excited about it, GlitchDS is a homebrew music sequencing program for DS that uses cellular automata to trigger sounds you select. So basically it creates a 32 step sequence based on the life and death of cells represented by squares on the top screen. What determines the destiny of your cells is the rules of a logical game called “Conway’s Game of Life” in which cells are born, live, or die based on their juxtaposition with other cells. With the stylus you create the starting live cells and then watch on the top screen as they live for 32 life cycles then start over. The rules of the game allow for the creation of oscillators and machines that move through the playfield. I’m absolutely obsessed with this thing right now, peep the wikipedia article to find out about the different lifeforms that self regenerate and you can really get technical.      …GlitchDS