Happy to be here- early for once!

I’m a late developer. Was in my late 50s before I had an iPad. Early 60s before I started using it for music. Ten months back I bought miRack cos it was cheap initially and, y’know, FoMo… Several factors (most of them good iOS friends) conspired to finally get me started in miRack about a week ago despite my being almost terrified of doing so and failing- and I can honestly say that I cannot recall having so much fun in an app, ever. And by sheer chance I happen to have fallen into it near the start of its very own forum, so won’t feel like a small child in a room full of haughty adults (yes, I’m looking at you ABF).

Big thanks are due to Dean at Electronisounds- for tutorials and one helluva lot of really usable samples- Ed B for the final kick up the ass to get me moving, but most of all to Spidericemidas- a true beacon of light for anyone fallen down the bottomless rabbit hole that is miRack. People, you have my deepest thanks. Now- where did I leave that drum sequencer patch…?


Hey hey, Wal! Welcome down the rabbit hole!

For sequencing drum sounds I’ve been using multiple instances of the “Frozen Wasteland Quad Euclidean Rhythm” and “mscHACK Seq 3 x 16”. The 6 x 32 is also great.

For creating a little random-type variation, I also like to put a Bernoulli Gate in between the trigger-out from a sequencer track and two modules which are providing different sounds. The Plaits (macro oscillator 2) modules are great for drum and percussive sounds as well as the standard dedicated kick/snare/hats/claps modules. Trigger out from sequencer track goes to input on Bernoulli Gate, and the two outputs from the Gate (A & B) into the trigger inputs of the modules. Set a rough probability on the Gate to favour either the A or B outputs or leave it in the middle setting for 50/50 probability. So on each strike from the sequencer track, there’s a probability of triggering the module connected to the A output or the module connected to the B output from the Gate.

For a simple exercise, you could have just one Quad Euclidean sequencer with its four trigger tracks each connected to a Bernoulli Gate, and the first set of A & B outputs from the Gates therefore driving eight modules of different percussive sounds (two modules per Gate) and each Gate’s A & B output probability will sort of randomly cause either of its pair of assigned modules to trigger, if you see what I mean? Gives great variation in beats this way but can also be used with tuned melodic sounds as well to create variation in the playback of the sequenced sound sources. You can build on that idea from there into bigger and more complex setups with more Gates, and Gates feeding into Gates to split the trigger signal up even further and divert it over an ever wider field of potential sound sources!



Thank you Spider- that’s given me a lot to think about, and certainly gives me something to do today (off work with the poorly back atm).

I’ve built a few drum machines- my favourite to date has Impromptu’s ‘Clocked’ providing clock to three instances of the 3x16 sequencer, which are triggering two banks of Nysthi’s ‘Quad Simpler’ loaded with eight of Dean’s drum samples. The whole lot goes into an eight-channel Drum Mixer, then out through M1’s stereo reverb and Bogaudio’s EQ, Limiter and VU meter.

Two issues with that set-up are that the sequencers are fiddly, and very easy to knock out of 16 step patterns by accident (though this can generate interesting noises), and the fact that Dean does not appear to do toms in any meaningful sense, so any toms I have are tuned kicks, of which he has hundreds.

What I think I will do over first coffee is find a bunch of sounds I’m happy with in DigiStix (including high, mid, low and floor toms), then do a bunch of cut-ups in Audioshare. I’d given the Frozen Wasteland a cursory glance, but couldn’t immediately see how it worked, so I’ll have to revisit that. The Bernoulli gate though- that was great fun in one of my early set-ups. Very gently applying both parameters was getting me something that sounded like Walton’s ‘Battle of Britain Suite’, so I’m guessing that was composed in a minor key… Once I’ve got a drum patch I like it should be the work of a few minutes to add bass- SynthKit’s 8-step sequencer is simple enough to use; eight steps is a bit limiting, but there”s no harm in adding a Bernoulli gate to that either I suppose.

That, I’m finding, is the beauty of virtual Eurorack- unless I had endless splitters to hand, I’d need several instances of the real Bernoulli gate to do what I’m planning, and I doubt that they’re cheap. Add a couple of Quad Simplers and a sequencer, and that would have been my putative budget for the new Modal Cobalt 8 gone, and then some…

Will probably see you at Dean’s set tomorrow- if it’s at a sensible time!

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Hell yeah! The setups I’m making in miRack would cost more in hardware than my house is worth! Lol.
Enjoy a productive morning, mate. Coffee, sampling and miRack sounds perfect!

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Brilliant advice- thanks! The Frozen Wasteland sequencer is now an important part of my armoury. However, I’m finding them a royal pita to sync- I’ve got them all attached to Clocked, both from the clock out AND the reset out, but they refuse to start at the some stage in the sequence. And I must confess to not entirely following your paragraph re the Bernoulli A and B and the Gates and so forth, but you seemed not to expect me to, so I’m not too downhearted. One instance is about all the randomness I can cope with anyway.

I’m currently running four instances of the FW Quad thingy in my evolving ‘complete tune’ patch- one for drums (with a Bernoulli gate on the kick and the hats), one for some gentle EP chords, a third for bass, and the fourth for little lead lines. I just cannot get them all to play nicely together, and the manual is not a lot of help- it seems to suggest that you can link them by clock, but miRack will not let you patch from clock to clock on the sequencers…

Nevertheless, it’s amazing what you can get up to. I am now using hardware again- but basically just to record clips to load into the Quad Simpler. At least I’ve sated my drum machine GAS!

There is a trick to getting everything to reset and start in sync from the beginning each time, with just one press of a “big button”. Dean did a rather in-depth tutorial on it quite a while ago. It’s a bit complicated to route, and I don’t entirely understand it myself, but I’ll see if I can find it and forward you a link.

The Bernoulli gates are excellent for creating a bit of variation by using probability to trigger things. Dean’s also got a tutorial on the Bernoulli gate which goes into a bit more detail. I’ll try linking you to that one as well.

Tbh Spider I think I’d taken that patch as far as it could reasonably go. However, I’ve now created a killer drum machine from two Wasteland products and one Bernoulli gate decreasing the instances of hats and increasing the instances of mid-toms. Thunderously good stuff, and all in perfect sync. Bet I couldn’t have done that with a £260 DrumBrute!

Btw, Dean’s show kicks off at 9.50pm our time tonight if you hadn’t heard…