Friday, November 23, 2007

The tenori-on helper 0.9

I am using different midi-controller for a long time now. Even in the "Pre-Midi" era I played a kind of weird controller called "The Digitarre" (The Digi-Guitar), which was controlling a huge digital sequencer.
I normally play Donald Buchlas "Thunder" and "Lightning II" as my Midi-controllers I am very much into sequencing and Midi-controller, so decided to buy the Tenori-On in London.
First of all, its a great machine. It is such fun to play it!

But, and there are a few "but", if you are looking not only from the side of having fun with it - if you would like to use it as a serious tool in live-situations:

1.The way blocks can be copied and arranged is very easy. Put it would also be very helpful, if there would be a possibilty to automate the arrangement of the blocks, to create songs. I also would like a kind of arranger very much. And: It also would make perfect sense, if I could stack some of the blocks together, to create longer patterns.

2. The tenori-On puts out Midi-Notes. The velocity is always 100. To control external synthesizers it would be great to give the possibilty to assign a layer to different mode, like sending controller. I made a small program in MAX/MSP, which I will describe later on.

3.To use the Tenori-On as a tool for a DAW, the Midi-clock is not useable, because of two reasons: First it is a Midi-Clock and not a Midi-timecode, which makes it a little unstable, and second, it has a delay. I tried it on different computer-systems with 3 different Midi-Interfaces and the Midi-Clock has a delay between 50 and 65ms in tempo 120 in master, as well as in slave-mode. This is not usable for using the Tenori-on as a programmer for sequences in DAWs. But I also found a workaround.

4. It is not really handy and possible to use the tenori-on as a controller for Ableton Live. Because of the Midi-Out situation it coul only provide 16 Midi-Notes on each Layer, and also not very flexible - I have to think about a patch with Max/Msp.

First solution:
I wrote this MAX/MSP-patch called the "tenori-on helper" and i gave it the version-number 0.9, because I finished it today, and I am not sure if everything is working without mistakes.
The program does:

1. You can adjust to Midi-Clock in ms to your DAW, the only thing is, that you tenori-on has to start on the second beat - then everything works in sync - adjustable for each Midi-Channel.

2. I changed as an input for my DAW the first 4 Layers:
Layer1 = Midi-Notes on Midi-Channel1
Layer2 = Velocity for the notes on channel1
Layer3 = controller on channel1 to use it for like Cutoff-Filter
Layer4 = controller on channel1 to use it for like Resonance

If you are interested to try this out, you will find the software here:
The tenori-on helper 0.9 (6.5mb)

Feedback is welcome......

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