MFB step64 sequencer

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zoomtheline
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MFB step64 sequencer

Post by zoomtheline » Mon Apr 20, 2009 3:51 pm

has anyone here got one of these little boxes?

Any pro's/cons?

I'm after a new hardware sequencer and was going to grab an Orb as I already have a Mobius which is great... but I want a bit more like a swing function, then I noticed the MFB one which is 64 steps!! which sounds right up my street. I really like the price too which makes me wonder how it performs because you get so much for your money judging by the specs. I know its partly down to the manufacturing side of it as its quite a cheap looking box but I have a MFB filterbox which is really good and actually feels nice and sturdy so...

any info would be really appreciated

OR if anyone can recommend a hardware sequencer that is similar? i.e. more than 16 steps, swing/shuffle, midi only is ok does not need CV, less than say £500, relatively easy to order from UK.

Cheers
Last edited by zoomtheline on Mon Apr 20, 2009 4:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Hair
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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by Hair » Mon Apr 20, 2009 4:01 pm

another is the Spectral Audio Cyclus 3, but on the product page it doesn't mention having swing

zoomtheline
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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by zoomtheline » Mon Apr 20, 2009 4:28 pm

the info does not seem too clear to me, but still it looks interesting! cheers

magnus
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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by magnus » Wed Apr 22, 2009 11:55 pm

Hi,
I've gotone of these. It's quite fun to use, but it is quite buggy - I had to send mine back to get some bugs ironed out, and just the other day it reverted to the factory settings (everything lost!). Reply to this post if you want an in depth description of the pros and cons

zoomtheline
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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by zoomtheline » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:41 am

oh, I just ordered one literally 10 minutes ago haha.

yes if its not too much trouble let me know what I have got coming please.

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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by Youmakeme » Fri Apr 24, 2009 3:21 pm

I've just bought one and i have a question. Can it be used as a midi-to-cv converter (real-time i mean)?

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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by magnus » Sun Apr 26, 2009 1:09 pm

No it I don't think it can be used as a midi-cv converter, which is a real shame I think. I'd love to know if anyone has found a work around for this, as it has a midi clock in.

Okay, regarding the Step64 in general, it's good fun to use - if you're composing directly onto the sequencer, it kind of makes you think differently compared with keyboard composition. If you're transcribing something you've already come up with, it's a lot more simple than step sequencing on a normal step sequencer, due to the lack of menus.

If your synth has enough inputs eg 2 filters and gate time, you can get some pretty awesome results albeit in chunks of 16 steps that you have to string together. The 32 step mode, which allows control of 1 additional parameter besides cv and trigger, sounds good enough, whilst the 64 step mode with no additional parameters is a little boring unless you tweak by hand while the sequence is running.

Don't be fooled into thinking you have a proper analogue step sequencer. This has nowhere near as much flexibility, although you don't have to be limited to plugging the cv inputs into filter/keyboard cv ins - stik them where you like! No portamento, and, despite what the manual says, no legato - the guy that makes them reckons that it depends on the synth, but I think it's down to a software problem, as the process that's supposed to do legato does something else entirely. I think it makes the pitch of the two notes you want to join up the same.

The big problem with mine was that 32 step mode didn't work - it would get all the notes right, but only did filter control for the first sixteen steps. Check this out when you receive yours, and contact MFB if you have the same problem. He should fix it for free.

As I said, mine wiped itself the other day - I wonder whether it actually has a semi-volatile memory, as it had been unplugged for a while - but otherwise it's quite reliable. Let me know if you have any more questions. I might dig up a post I made on another forum on the Step64

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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by Youmakeme » Sun Apr 26, 2009 5:05 pm

magnus wrote:No it I don't think it can be used as a midi-cv converter, which is a real shame I think. I'd love to know if anyone has found a work around for this, as it has a midi clock in.
I sended them an email asking if it was possible, and if is not, telling it will be a NICE feature (midi-through when the sequencer is off will be nice too). When i buyed it i just thought it will have that option, seemed pretty obvious but now im not that sure :(.
magnus wrote:The big problem with mine was that 32 step mode didn't work - it would get all the notes right, but only did filter control for the first sixteen steps. Check this out when you receive yours, and contact MFB if you have the same problem. He should fix it for free.
I will check, thanks for the info!

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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by Youmakeme » Mon Apr 27, 2009 12:24 pm

They answer me today saying that is not possible :(

zoomtheline
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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by zoomtheline » Mon Apr 27, 2009 3:48 pm

thanks for the info!

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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by Henfield » Thu Apr 30, 2009 9:39 pm

I have also been looking at the Step 64. I currently have a Moogerfooger setup (filter, ringmod, and freqbox), that I could use the many CV outs to control 3 or 4 functions. I am also starting to build a modular synth, which can also use the CV outs as well. I like the MIDI idea to sync to my Alesis drum machine, and having memories makes it convenient to take this unit and interface it with my friends MOTM modular as well. I am sorry to hear that it will not function as a CV to MIDI converter, but that is not a deal breaker for me.

What can you tell me about Modes 1 - 3? have you interfaced the CV outs for various other functions besides pitch data?

Thank you for any other info that you can share about this little sequencer,

Henfield........................

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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by magnus » Sat May 02, 2009 5:47 pm

Hi, I couldn't tell you much about modes 2 and 3, as I never use them. What I know is that one of them allows you to control up to four synths monophonically with no control over parameters other than triggering and pitch (or whatever else you choose to asign the CV to), and the other one allows you to control a single polyphonic synth. I'm not really sure what the difference between the two modes is really - I've got the details written down somewhere, but I can't find them at the moment. As a rule, the more parameters you control, the shorter the sequences possible, due to the limitations of the step64 interface, so each of these provides 16 steps, whereas mode 6 - 1 monophonic line, no additional parameters - allows a 64 note sequence. It's got a reasonable amount of memory, so unless you never delete patterns, the only difference this makes is that you have to chain the shorter sequences to make a long complex sequence

If you've got a lot of CV inputs, mode 1 will probably be your favourite mode. It allows control over pitch plus 3 other CVs. I use it with a KorG MS20, can control both filters and gate time individually. You can only write 16 steps per sequence though, and it can be quite tedious chaining 16 step sequences together rather than writing 32 or 64 steps on the fly.

For pitch you get a range of 5 octaves, and for the other parameters, a resolution of 127. Besides that, there's not a lot more to say - the rest depends on the capabilities of your synth rather than the capabilities of the sequencer.

PS there is no 1-shot mode unfortunately

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Re: MFB step64 sequencer

Post by eucarya » Sat Jan 29, 2011 9:27 pm

^bumbumbump

Interested in more from ppl using this. I'd like to grab one to control my Oddy, but also dig that I can use this w/ my MIDI synths.

Interested in the possibility of using the CV and MIDI at the same time, to build sequences w/ multiple synths, etc. Primarily want something to expand my Oddy in studio, also gigwise (primarily w/ MIDI).

Seems simple, which is good. What you guys thinnnnnk?

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