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 Forum index » Instruments and Equipment » General Discussion
Making a polysynth out of Waldorf Rockets
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Antimon



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 25, 2013 3:50 am    Post subject: Making a polysynth out of Waldorf Rockets
Subject description: Non-invasive polysynth idea using ChucK
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I've had my Waldorf Rocket a while now, and this idea has grown in my head:

Get three to five more to make a polysynth. I can write a ChucK program to distribute MIDI notes. Plus: the Rocket sends and receives midi for the knobs, meaning I can listen for tweaking on one Rocket, and then pass on the MIDI to the others, keeping them synched up. The Rocket is priced at ~ €220. It won't be the cheapest polysynth around, but considering the analog filters (which I love) it won't be the most expensive either.

An optional extra could be to take the audio input from each Rocket into ChucK and mix them there, adding a VCA to each voice so I can control attack (my biggest gripe with the Rocket).

Also I could add extra envelopes in my ChucK program to control whatever parameter on the Rockets I'd like - like a filter envelope separate from the VCA envelope. Might be some zipper artifacts, but worth a try.

Silly idea?

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adnauseam



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 25, 2013 1:01 pm    Post subject: Re: Making a polysynth out of Waldorf Rockets
Subject description: Non-invasive polysynth idea using ChucK
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Antimon wrote:
I've had my Waldorf Rocket a while now, and this idea has grown in my head:

Get three to five more to make a polysynth. I can write a ChucK program to distribute MIDI notes. Plus: the Rocket sends and receives midi for the knobs, meaning I can listen for tweaking on one Rocket, and then pass on the MIDI to the others, keeping them synched up. The Rocket is priced at ~ €220. It won't be the cheapest polysynth around, but considering the analog filters (which I love) it won't be the most expensive either.

An optional extra could be to take the audio input from each Rocket into ChucK and mix them there, adding a VCA to each voice so I can control attack (my biggest gripe with the Rocket).

Also I could add extra envelopes in my ChucK program to control whatever parameter on the Rockets I'd like - like a filter envelope separate from the VCA envelope. Might be some zipper artifacts, but worth a try.

Silly idea?


Silly but not impossible! Any reason why one wouldn't just go spend a grand on something more useful.. Juno 106? I know you'd be missing the Supersaws and octave split type stuff that the Rocket has.

I've often thought about this kind of configuration. A virtual software "synth" that's really just a midi processor, with some added structure to help you manipulate hardware with extra envelopes, sequencer type interfaces, midi synced lfos, whatever.

So far I've looked at CTRLR, PureData, and now MAX to do something similar.
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Antimon



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2013 3:44 am    Post subject: Re: Making a polysynth out of Waldorf Rockets
Subject description: Non-invasive polysynth idea using ChucK
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adnauseam wrote:

Silly but not impossible! Any reason why one wouldn't just go spend a grand on something more useful.. Juno 106? I know you'd be missing the Supersaws and octave split type stuff that the Rocket has.

I've often thought about this kind of configuration. A virtual software "synth" that's really just a midi processor, with some added structure to help you manipulate hardware with extra envelopes, sequencer type interfaces, midi synced lfos, whatever.

So far I've looked at CTRLR, PureData, and now MAX to do something similar.


I'm sure that the Juno 106 is a very nice synth, if I came across one I'd probably check it out. I've never gotten into buying expensive second hand stuff online...

The reason I had this idea was that I'm so happy with the sound coming out of my Rocket. It can do subtle sounds (as well as thick) that I think would work well with polyphony. It's tweak-friendly, and has that cool midi-implementation.

My other analog poly is the Evolver, which is great but not very good at subtle - I think I would be able to do different things with a Rocket stack.

Also, I'll have four monosynths that I like, that I can use to make big arrangements if I want. Plus they would be easier to fit in my limited space, or stow away when I don't need them.

Also the silliness of it all appeals to me. Smile

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Cynosure
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 27, 2013 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

It sounds like a cool idea. Although I would do it all in hardware so it isn't tied to a computer. You could do all the MIDI routing with an Arduino or PIC.

Keep us posted if you do decide to try it. I know a lot of people kept bring up the same idea for the Monotron, but I never saw anyone actually try it.
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Keysandslots



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2013 6:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Have you looked at the MidiPal from Mutable Instruments? I am doing the same thing you want to do but using a bunch of Shruthis and a MidiPal running the Dispatcher.

Randy
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Antimon



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2013 11:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Thanks for mentioning MidiPal! Looks like a great device, besides doing the kind of midi routing that I want. Smile Doesn't cost a bundle either.
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Keysandslots



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, 2013 9:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

You're welcome. It is a great little box, along with the other stuff from Mutable.

Randy
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Antimon



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PostPosted: Sun Sep 22, 2013 5:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Ok so I went crazy and got myself three more Rockets. Wrote a ChucK program for routing to and between them just now (attached). Just spent some time playing, works like a charm. I'll put up some sound samples and maybe a video sometime soon.

Edit: updated the application, fixing a bug with note offs when more than four keys were pressed down.


multirocket.ck
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Last edited by Antimon on Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:21 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Antimon



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Here's a video of me playing.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2013 2:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Awesome!

And now you have to sell them all to get a new ipad Sad
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modulator_esp
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2013 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

That's great, a modern 4 voice Smile
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Antimon



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2013 11:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Thanks guys. Smile

Yeah the less said about the iPad the better. blackeye For anyone wondering, ask me in chat sometime.

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BobTheDog



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PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Brilliant!
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MusicMan11712



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PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 5:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Cool to see you playing around with your rockets. Does the ChucK script turn the rocket on the right into a control master for the other 3?
Steve
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Antimon



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PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 3:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

MusicMan11712 wrote:
Does the ChucK script turn the rocket on the right into a control master for the other 3?


Exactly! The Rocket sends and receives midi for all knobs and almost all switches (a couple of times you will see me throwing the "boost" switch on all units - that one doesn't work with midi). This was the main reason I did this thing, it really works like a knobby polysynth. Smile

And thanks for the cheers guys! Very Happy

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Antimon



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PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I can report that you can apply the same principle to an Octatrack with eight identical tracks running machines containing identical single cycle sample loops.

A single cycle machine can be seen as a kind of monosynth, and tracks on the octa send and receive midi for parameters on separate channels So you can connect to them just like you would several Rockets, and have one track control parameters for the rest. Neat!

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Antimon



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PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I implemented the attack trick, where I hook up each Rocket to an input on my sound card, and then process the sound in my ChucK program. I implemented a one second attack for each "voice" which is reset on each note.

Fiddling around with this I made a track, which can be found here. The Rocket sound is run through padaver's nice jellyfish analog delay, and I added some other noises, but I think you get the principle.

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Antimon



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PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

And here's a recording of me fiddling around with the setup for the octatrack. Before the last third I stopped recording and patched up a different sound with some delay, other than that everything is tweaked live using knobs on track 1 (my program picks up the midi that is sent and broadcasts it to the other tracks).

No other effects added here, it's all octatrack, and me clumsily playing on my keyboard while tweaking. Smile


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