Standalone Sequencer

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VegaLA
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Standalone Sequencer

Post by VegaLA » Sun Sep 10, 2017 2:56 am

Hi everyone.

So I have recently resurrected my interest in Synths after many years and I have compiled a shortlist of new tech toys to purchase.
I am looking for a Sequencer in order to play MIDI files to various other Synths (they do do that these days right?)* and switched from my initial idea of getting a Novation Circuit to the Maschine Jam, however, when playing I ideally do not want a laptop as part of my rig/setup, but according to their website - https://www.native-instruments.com/en/p ... e-jam/faq/ this device REQUIRES a laptop!

Now, when at home I don't mind using a PC or laptop in order to Download files/patches/sounds/samples or MIDI files but I definitely do not want to use a laptop when playing. I would much rather have a dedicated box taking care of playing the various other tracks using hardware synths.

Looked at the Korg Electribe but that may be too much to digest for a first timer (again) and Akai's products seem to be more drum based but I may have only scratched the surface there...not sure.

Anyway, can anyone suggest a decent Sequencer that can play at least 8 tracks or more and please enlighten me*, MIDI files... can they be loaded/imported onto a standalone sequencer to play other hardware synths or are they strictly used for DAWs?

Thanks in advance.

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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by gcoudert » Sun Sep 10, 2017 9:12 am

Roland MC-50. The Mk II version plays MIDI files (there is a programme that can be loaded into the Mk I but I could never get it to work). You'll have enough tracks and the learning curve won't be steep.

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VegaLA
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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by VegaLA » Sun Sep 10, 2017 3:38 pm

Thank you GC. I've looked it up and it would be a great fit for my plans!

Cheers again.

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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by abruzzi » Sun Sep 10, 2017 4:57 pm

There are a lot of standalone sequencers that can function without a laptop, but not all of them load a SMF (standard MIDI file). Depending on what you're doing you might find the best solution to be a workstation (or workstation rack) because they frequently have good sequencers with a floppy to load a SMF file, plus you get a lot of sounds as well. In addition, since "romplers" and workstations are not all that popular these days, they can usually be had cheap. You can usually fin a Kurzweil K2000R rack for about $200, with a great sequencer (I did many shows with that sequencer) and an awesome sound engine. It loads SMF files so you can work in your DAW then save the final piece to a floppy and load it in the Kurzweil. If you don't want to muck with floppies, the floppy can be replaced with a SCSI2SD card, allowing you to move files back and forth on a SD card.

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salwa
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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by salwa » Mon Sep 11, 2017 7:17 am

Check also Kawai Q80EX. 32 tracks, 32 MIDI chanels, two MIDI outs.
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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by adamstan » Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:14 am

salwa wrote:Check also Kawai Q80EX. 32 tracks, 32 MIDI chanels, two MIDI outs.
Or Yamaha QY-700. It too has 32 tracks and two Midi outs, and you can set output channel separately for each track (sending it either to internal synth engine, or to any of the outputs). It also has nice, big backlit screen.
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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by VegaLA » Tue Sep 12, 2017 3:11 am

Cheers.

Seems there are a few options!

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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by gcoudert » Tue Sep 12, 2017 8:19 am

Check the saving options too. Some may not have a disc drive or whatever.
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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by monkeykong1 » Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:45 pm

Wow the Kurzweil K2000R look enormous. Maybe youd be better playing live with a laptop!

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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by Quartz » Fri Sep 15, 2017 3:43 pm

salwa wrote:Check also Kawai Q80EX. 32 tracks, 32 MIDI chanels, two MIDI outs.
Good choice. I used one of these for years. And it had it's own format (instead of SMF..which it still can decipher) to load and save onto. Which made it super fast. Two MIDI outs were handy too.
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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by crystalmsc » Mon Sep 18, 2017 8:32 am

For playing back GM and GS files, I'm relying on the MC-80ex which has a built-in SC-88Pro engine. It has a direct from disk playback which is very useful in a live situation, also two midi outputs for driving external synths. Editing the internal engine is not the easiest things to do, but for playing back GS files it's the best. The built-in VE-GSPro Voice Expansion Board is the equivalent of the SC-880 minus the patch layering feature. Some people found the MC-50 is faster to work with, but the MC-80 has more features which can be more rewarding after getting used to with the much more flexible capabilities.
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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by abruzzi » Tue Sep 19, 2017 2:34 am

monkeykong1 wrote:Wow the Kurzweil K2000R look enormous. Maybe youd be better playing live with a laptop!
Just standard 3u rack.

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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by meatballfulton » Tue Sep 19, 2017 12:47 pm

In case it's not obvious, all of the recommended devices are long out of production and only available used. There is literally no market for standalone "song based" sequencers any more since computers have gotten so cheap.
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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by blueknob » Tue Sep 19, 2017 3:51 pm

meatballfulton wrote:In case it's not obvious, all of the recommended devices are long out of production and only available used. There is literally no market for standalone "song based" sequencers any more since computers have gotten so cheap.
I have asked our friend Uli for a sequencer. Q80 and MC50 are selling like hot cakes. I want to gig with a rock solid box and not have to fret about a fragile complex laptop. :lol:

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Re: Standalone Sequencer

Post by pflosi » Tue Sep 19, 2017 10:18 pm

You should better ask Roger Linn, then :| Or Colin Fraser 8-)

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