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  The Accord Sequarallel
Eurorack Module
by SDS Digital
 

The Sequarallel CV to Chords Sequencer module may be perfect for you!
 

Introducing the SDS Digital Accord Series Sequarallel!

One thing that we hear a lot from modular enthusiasts is how daunting it is to use a computer while performing. I myself have done this and it doesn't always work out as expected. It's especially difficult to load & run sequences from a dark screen outdoors, or amongst a mess of haphazard wires strewn about the stage, you get the picture.

In our constant endeavor to oust the computer from the world of modular we have come up with another module that replaces sequencer software. OK, a DAW MIDI player is still preferable to play the MIDI that Sequarallel will record, but modular clocked MIDI and Layered MIDI can be recorded directly from a keyboard or controller if that's more your application.
There is enough on-board memory to record hours of MIDI sequences, loops, layers, and tracks.

What Does This Module do?
The Sequarallel is basically a 4 CV channel + MIDI Sequencer that will play your VCO's and envelope generators like a pro!
Regular Sequencers are fine for stepped beats running on a clock but creating the sequence is both time consuming and very tweaky. In many applications they have their place, but for a truly complex and intricate sequence, it seems we always turn to the computer, then patch it's output to a converter for gates, triggers and CV's for modular.

This module bypasses all of the hardware/software and does the sequences on it's own! In standby it can still keep up with the best of MIDI2CV modules, but with stand-alone sequencing it really shines! Sequences can be modified via Note Transforms like Mirror, proximity scaling, inversion, probability, glide, glissando, pitch bend, and Transpose. Most of these can be controlled with a CV input to one of the 3 bi-directional jacks, or with the MIDI Remote function from any MIDI controller.

There's Global Automation recording (up to 64 bars) of panel, Remote MIDI control and assigned CV input changes. It's not locked to the sequence so can be used for jumping to different loops, transposing, exiting loops, even changing the clock division, offering amazing flexibility in the way a sequence plays and freeing your hands up for other things.

Looping?
Up to 9 loop/jump markers can be set within a sequence. Loop markers can be "jumped to" from an on-screen button, via a CV input, or with a MIDI controller. In TRAX mode up to 5 tracks can be individually jumped to, each with up to 9 markers making a possible 45 different combinations from only 1 sequence!

Loop markers can be set in a song-like sequence, or in a TRAX sequence on each track. Layers of MIDI can be constantly recorded on to a Sequence from a keyboard or controller on any channel, whether looping or just playing. A loop can be built up then once the loop is exited, Layers will be dumped. In TRAX mode they remain and become part of that loop.

MIDI MPE Compatible?
Yes, the Sequarallel will accept MPE format (and detect zone configuration messages) for up to 4 note zones on the panel. Zones larger than 4 notes will still be sent on through MIDI out.
Pitch Bend is applied to the CV outputs of course, but the 4 CC/VEL jacks can be configured to one of the remaining 4 expression elements to control your VCO modulation, filters, etc.

Is This Module Complicated to Learn?
Not at all! Scrolling through the Quick-Box buttons makes changing parameters as easy as possible, and there's no menu-diving! Clicking on some Quick-Boxes acts like a toggle, while others jump to a selection within that box. Holding down the encoder on a Quick-Box will access it's settings list, lesser changed parameters.
Probably the most complex part of operation is creating sequences in your DAW to record into the Sequarallel. The module comes with several sample sequences to get you started so all that is required is a clock, and some VCO's to make it happen! If you want to get deeper, the Sequarallel can do a lot more, here's some features:

 


Shown: Prototype Sept 2019

6 x CC /Vel Outputs During Sequence play, in sync to your clock, there are 6 MIDI CC's that, if were changed during the recording of the sequence, will reproduce those motions at the jacks. The Jacks on tracks 1-4 can be Velocity, After touch, Pitch Bend
CC 5 & 6 can be configured as CV inputs to control many panel controlled parameters, or insert MIDI CC or Pitch Bends to selected MIDI Channels playing or live via MIDI input. All CV I/O are bi-polar -5V to +5V, or 0 to 10V
MIDI OUT The MIDI Recorded is exactly duplicated during playback with all of the nuances like Program Changes, CC changes, Notes on all channels, and Percussion.
MIDI IN / Merge MIDI received at MIDI in jack is merged with MIDI out. This also is used during Layer recording
Channel Blocking Any amount of MIDI channels used by the module's CV, Gate, & Velocity outputs can be blocked from MIDI output, giving your VCO's exclusivity. Each CV's organization, (The 4 Channel Modes) can block different channels so during sequence play, or live MIDI2CV the entire Sequence's method of play can be changed with a click and turn of the encoder.
Loops and Jumps A recorded sequence can be broken up into smaller loops if it is long (i.e. a song) by special notes inserted in the original sequence recorded, or afterward on the display. Using JumpTo and Loop on/off you can bounce around inside a sequence to make it play longer or forever!
Live Transposing The entire MIDI sequence, MIDI output and CV's, can be instantly transposed. This change happens only on bars so a simple sequence can be "played" by transposing. A great added feature to the Sequarallel is panel actions can be automated so a transposing sequence can be used throughout the sequence loops.
Live MIDI2CV When not playing a sequence, the MIDI input becomes active so can be used to simply convert MIDI to CV. This is great for auditioning a sequence before recording it, or, if you must, using modular with MIDI sync from a DAW. The Clock output will be the source for your rack.
Drum Triggers When switched to Drums Mode, MIDI Channel 10 is ported to the 12 jacks as percussion triggers. The MIDI notes for each drum used is shown on the display as a grid that highlights blocks when the trigger is played.
MIDI Remote Accurate bar quantized transposing can be controlled from a MIDI keyboard and recorded as an automation the same way as panel automation is. Switching Loops is as easy as changing the PC of your keyboard, also bar or marker quantized.
100 Sequences! Up to 100 Sequences can be recorded into the Sequarallel, each with up to 8 loop/jump markers making a total of 800 possible sequences! 
TRAX Mode Separates MIDI Channels into tracks. Each Track can be of varying length and can have it's own Loop Markers. Single Tracks can be turned on/off. Up to 15 tracks can be created to assign to different Gate/CV channels (excl. Ch10 percussion)
MIDI Percussion has it's own track and Loop markers selectable in the same way.
Link-able Two Sequarallel's can be linked together to allow a deeper exploration of the more complex chords  When linked, chords larger than 4 notes will play on the 2nd Sequarallel. The first can have a constant MIDI input while the 2nd a constant MIDI output or split some MIDI channels out to another synth with either being the master.
Up to 24 drum triggers can also be realized if that's your thing. The Sequarallel will also link to our Accord Melisma for increased functionality of both modules (i.e. MIDI merging, G/V/CV break out)
Automation Recorder All panel, Assigned CV, and MIDI remote invoked changes to the sequence can be recorded (up to 64 bars) and looped immediately. AUTOREC is not Sequence position dependent so can be used to turn on/off Loops, jump to other markers, turn tracks on/off, transpose, etc. to free you up to do other things. Dynamically flowing, without any jumps, AUTOREC changes applied will completely change the sound of a sequence in such interesting ways!
Layer Recording Record Layers while a sequence is playing, or alone, from a keyboard or any MIDI controller. Layers Record can be left on to free the player from managing the module while in a creative spin! Layers recorded in a marker Loop will be removed once loop exited. This is great for building up a section of a sequence or song, then returning to the main sequence original.  Layers can also be saved permanently.
 
Display: On the left side of the display, 4 large notes are displayed as they are played (live) or sequenced out to CV.
During Drums mode there are 12 boxes (with note#'s) that highlight when a percussion trigger occurs
On the right side are the "Quick Boxes" that can be scrolled up/down to. Quick Boxes are essentially buttons.
 
MIDI in Trigger MIDI Input, when not being used for MIDI, can accept trigger input pulse to start / reset / stop sequences, queue Jumps (defined by CV input to Clock out jack, notice the arrow).
 
Select Bus This module can act as a Eurorack Select Bus master or slave.
CV Fine Tune Each 1V/Octave CV has it's own fine tuning +/- 100 cents, and there's a master Fine Tune Quick-Box to add a bit of sharpness to all VCO's quickly.
For even finer tuning, a slope can be adjusted for those stubborn non-linear gain VCO's.
For Hz connoisseurs, there's 11 point bi-polar auto-tune using the MIDI in jack.

Whether you want to sequence simple triggers or a complex rhythm, or a whole song, the Sequarallel gets the job done!

 

My own testimonial to HW sequencing and the origins of the Sequarallel:

For a time over the past few years I have performed with a laptop sequencing backing instruments and controlling MIDI hardware. Things didn't always go as planned. Sometimes minor issues would go un-noticed, while other total crash scenarios were a total show-stopper. That feeling of hopelessness resonated in my soul since then and I have made it a #1 goal to eradicate the computer from the stage entirely!

I have designed and built a few MIDI-controlled stage lighting fixtures to run during loaded backing for songs I performed, plus elaborate software control requiring only a 3 digit number be entered and everything loads up. At that time a good part of the the audio processing and MIDI instruments were software based but mixed with hardware like Korgs & Yamaha synths/drums. All of this controlled via MIDI from the PC.

So the pull the PC out of the loop, and get total control over my TC Helicon VoiceLive Touch 2 vocal FX unit, I designed a pedal board called "Pedal 7" (shown right>>)
 This combines manual and automatic control over 4 MIDI I/O, modular interfacing, sample player, running tap-tempo, and a great sequencer to meld it all together.
That sequencer is what I based the Sequarallel on.


The Pedal-7, origin of the Sequarallel!

 

Demonstration and Development Videos

  Testing Testing 1 2 3 ...

This is the first video exposing the Sequarallel prototype to le grand public. It was a test video to visualize flaws but went pretty good so I thought I'd post it on youtube with some text descriptions of what's going on ( so as not to interfere with the sound -with my voice )

Oddly the display looks crooked but it's not that much! The final modules won't be (we hope!)

Looping and transposing is many demonstrated in this video, but the Drum mode is shown and clock alignment goes without say :)

 

  This video is a bit more formatted and demonstrates the Loop Markers.

The JumpTo Quick-Box wasn't yet functional


Samples:

Here are some samples of the Sequencer in Action. (TBP)


Support:

Eventually Support items will be listed here as well as the User's Guide (which is underway)


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As this module is not yet available, this page will be changing and is still under development. Of course the more in-depth functions and capabilities are not listed here yet so stay tuned!

You can find the Sequarallel on Modular Grid at https://www.modulargrid.net/e/sds-digital-sequarallel and at Muff's forum (search)

You can contact me at fresh@freshnelly.com with any questions or requests

Thanks for checking out the Accord Sequarallel !

 

 

SDS DIGITAL 2019