Saturday, December 26, 2009

Steppy Lite

Steppy Lite works with any version of Live Lite 7.0.18 or higher.

It  uses Impulse instead of Drum Racks to trigger samples and uses 8 midi tracks instead of 9.

Notes triggered are C3-D-E-F-G-A-B-C4 ...this maps to Impulse, its also maybe a more useful range than that used in original Steppy (designed for Drum Racks) though it includes no black keys. A midi pitch effect on each track will let one finetune notes.

Read the blog post below this to learn more about Steppy. Next up is to make a 16 step version and maybe one designed around APC40 instead of Launchpad. (Though it works great with both.) And some videos.

Download Steppy Lite here:

Monday, December 21, 2009

Steppy! A Step Sequencer for Launchpad+Live

(also works with Akai APC40)
I had some articles lined up but its very unlikely I'll get anything done until after New Year's.

In the meantime, though I came up with Steppy! (not the most original name I know) I just wanted a basic step sequencer I could control with my Launchpad or APC40, so I made one! Consider it a late Hanukkah/Early Xmas present, maybe its better than a lump of coal.

Steppy is an 8x8 monophonic step sequencer for Live. It was designed around Launchpad but works great with APC40 too. It's quite basic, I wanted something that would let me rearrange cut-up breaks on the fly, using Drum Racks and it was tested with Ableton's 808 preset for that. Steppy is simply an Ableton Live set. There are no midi effects (or effects @ all) and it doesn't need MAX for Live or anything. Works straight away with Launchpad in Session mode. It *does* need Live 8 to run, LiveLite 8.06 for Launchpad will work, that's what came w/my Launchpad. LiveLite 8.09 for Launchpad will not as Steppy uses 9 midi tracks. (I don't know about Mac versions) Am working on an 8-track version that will run on any LiveLite 7 or higher.

Download here:

See how it works... it's a massive kludge but it didn't take very long...

Friday, December 4, 2009

Tweaking Netbooks for Audio (XP mainly, some Windows 7)

I hope this one is not too boring!

Netbooks have become one of the hottest sectors of the computer market, maybe they'll even muscle out those ubquitious lappies with little glowy apples on the lid. Mind, I don't really have a hate for Apple, I still have a G4 PowerBook which I'm fond of, it might even make an Old Tech article. But anyway a while back, I picked up a little Toshiba netbook myself, so I wouldn't lug my 100-pound Panasonic Toughbook everywhere, as badass as that may be. The advantages are obvious, the Tosh is light, cute, portable, has a lovely bright screen and cost $350. I wondered if it'd be powerful enough to handle a minimum of audio production and dj performance - and well, it is, with some work... I'd also spent some time tweaking the Toughbook prior, we're talking Windows XP, although netbooks are starting to ship with Win7 and don't mention Vista... and I know a plus for Macs is that you don't have to tweak them, but then you're missing out on all the fun...

Thursday, November 19, 2009


Oops, I goofed. Just upgraded Live8 for Launchpad to 8.0.9 and now it *does* match the specs on Ableton's site. (8.0.6 was the one that came with Launchpad.) 8 tracks of audio, 8 midi; 8 scenes still sucks donkeys but you can use more third-party plug-ins - 4 effects and 4 instruments which make it a *lot* more useful for production. Until I get full Live 8 (really its a matter of time) I will be using it. And 7.0.18 for DJ... again, it works with both APC40 and Launchpad!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Here Comes a Challenger! Novation Launchpad vs Akai APC40 review

The Ableton world was abuzz with the release of Akai's much-anticipated APC40, which promised a hitherto unmatched integration with and a level of realtime control over Live. The buzz didn't last as long as Akai might have hoped as only a few months later along comes Novation's Launchpad, which offers a bigger grid and USB bus power for half the price. Does it deliver? Is it the APC40 killer? Failure to launch? (OK, thats harsh.) Or just a slightly Live-savvy monome clone made in Asia?

Monday, November 2, 2009

Novation Launchpad Unboxing

Straight off the boat from China...

How Emo

I am syndicated on LiveJournal now. Thx to Aliz.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Here Comes a Challenger! Akai LPD8 vs Korg nanoPAD review

When Akai showed their new laptop controllers,  It *did* look a bit "me too" on the part of Akai but I'd always wanted to mess around with an MPC or MPC-ish pads beyond annoying all of Guitar Center with their MPC5000. While I love the nanos, especially the PAD and have already made a few tracks with them, one of the great things about all these products is that the price makes them *almost* an impulse buy, so I picked up an LPD8 for shits and giggles. Does it deliver them, oh yes, and in a good way. Is it better than Korg?

Old Tech: Sharp 722 Minidisc Recorder

Who remembers the minidisc?

Well, if you liked recording live shows or your own playing or just walking around collecting ambient noises and weren't born with an ipod mic in yr hand, you might. And you probably loved them. Sharp units were nearly everybody's favorite as you could change levels *while* recording, a simple but damn near essential feature seemingly unique to that brand.

I got this, definitely used but in box w/most accessories for $10 from a thrift shop. And it shows just how cool old tech can be. OK, you save money and save a useful and even cool product from landfill. But the 722 is the perfect companion for my Kaossilator, which is just why I bought it. I was sick of coming up with cool riffs and whole songs on the Kaossilator and forgetting them. Yeah it's gotta line in (doubles as optical) and the sound quality is great. Stick it in a bag with Kaossilator and a patch cord (yeah, you need one, the 722 came with it) and you are ready to go.

Kaossilator + 722: like peanut butter & chocolate, ebony & ivory. And the tiniest electronic music studio?

What else is cool? (and what sucks)


Hi! This blog is an extension of my twitter account, so I can post in depth and in obviously more than 140 characters!

Mostly I'll post on music tech and making music (derp) and I hope I can find my own angle on it and be funneh and interesting.