Squarp Instruments introduces Hapax high-end professional standalone sequencer as authentic setup centrepiece
PARIS, FRANCE: having originally designed and released Pyramid almost a decade ago as a compact, standalone 64-track hardware sequencer packed with creative tools that its music-making creators could not commercially find available elsewhere, subsequently applying that same thinking to their Hermod followup by bringing the power of MIDI to the ever- widening Eurorack modular world while inheriting some creative elements from its Pyramid precursor, Squarp Instruments is proud to introduce Hapax — duly designed from the ground up with dual-ARM processing architecture upping the computational power ante as a high-end professional standalone sequencer in a rugged, minimalist housing that deconstructs everything that the avant-garde machines-creating company already knew about sequencing to offer everything needed to compose songs in the studio and perform them onstage as an authentic centrepiece of any setup, sequencing and synchronising vintage to modern synths and modular systems, and even DAWs (Digital Audio Workstations), while maximising creativity with carefully crafted tools as the first hardware sequencer that fully supports MPE (MIDI Polyphonic Expression) — as of March 4…
Billed by its creators as a polychronic performance sequencer since it can clearly do many things at once, Hapax’s dual-processor architecture allows it to record and transform tremendous amounts of data in next to no time — and all without breaking into a sweat. As an around the clock performer, it can handle two separate and independent projects — each with 16 tracks and eight patterns per track — that can be played simultaneously, so users can compose or load another project while the first one is already playing, enabling endless sets and seamless transitions. The fact that Hapax is also the first hardware sequencer that fully supports MPE speaks volumes about Squarp Instruments’ intentions; it is perfectly possible to record the finest gestures, slides, and articulations of anything played, after all — and all without compromising quality.
Quality also shines forth for all to see and feel when it comes to the construction of the Hapax housing, manufactured from 2 mm machined aluminum, with a unibody ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) back panel. Put it this way: with connections for multiple midi in (DIN and TRS), midi out (3x DIN and TRS), cv in (2x -5V to +5V/16-bit), cv out (4x -5V to +5V/16-bit), gate out (4x +5V), switch (stereo pedal footswitch), USB Host (for linking to a MIDI USB controller), and USB Device (for linking to a DAW-hosting computer and associated virtual instruments), it quickly becomes apparent just how well thought through that back panel actually is in terms of conceivably communicating with everything that the music technology world might make available at this moment in time — hence Hapax ably acting as an authentic centerpiece of any setup, sequencing and synchronizing vintage to modern synths and modular systems, and even DAWs.
Digging deeper, Hapax’s adaptive workflow — with the top panel proffering hands-on access to no fewer than 128 RGB (Red Green Blue) matrix pads, 52 click pads, nine sturdy clickable encoders, and two OLED (Organic Light-Emitting Diode) greyscale displays — is designed around four main modes: live uses those 128 pads as an isomorphic keyboard or chord generator, giving rise to harmonic capabilities aimed at anyone — regardless of their theoretical knowledge — as a synaesthetic sensory blend of hearing, vision, and touch, thanks to its colorful interface; step uses them to add or fine-tune notes (or drum events) with surgical precision; autom uses them to create MIDI (or effects) automation; and pattern enables performing in sync by using the 128 pads to set the playing pattern of each track — create sections (or groups of patterns) and chain sections to build a song. Making music might involve using a polyphonic or MPE track to take advantage of the advanced step sequencer and quickly lay down notes or edit live recordings when writing melodies, or control up to eight different instruments with a single track when creating beats using the drum sequencer that is tailored to ease rhythm writing and jamming, for instance.
It is also possible to effectively bring those connected synths to life since Hapax embeds multiple real-time, polyphonic, non-destructive MIDI effects, as well as project-wide assignable LFOs (Low Frequency Oscillators). On top of that, each parameter of those effects can be automated in the dedicated mode, and processed in the mod matrix, which provides even more ways of routing and modulating.
Hapax has so much more to offer discerning devotees of hardware sequencers, with powerful tools for offline note transformation and generation always at hand — harmonically inverting a musical motif, generating a controlled random counter-melody, slowly ramping up the velocities, emphasizing every fifth eighth note… almost anything is possible! Hitting Hapax’s red button enables recording using the encoders and matrix pads, external MIDI instruments (including MPE controllers), or any incoming analogue signal at a high resolution of 192 PPQN (Pulses Per Quarter Note). Needless to say, looper-style recording, countdown and metronome options, and punch-in mode means that there are options to suit any workflow, while each track has an elasticity value that changes its playback speed, expressed as a percentage of BPM (Beats Per Minute) — quickly double or halve the speed of a track, for example, or create subtly shifted tracks that slowly drift out of phase with each other.
Of course, hardware usage should not — in a perfect world — curb creative flow. For this reason, Hapax has a dedicated undo REDO button with extensive history to enable its users to go back in time as deemed necessary; thankfully, the button-activated snapshot function allows users to save the state of a pattern for instant recall with a single press; and dedicated copy, paste, and delete buttons help Hapax on its way towards offering a complete toolbox for promptly editing tracks.
Music-making should always remain an enjoyable experience, though, which is why Squarp Instruments favored dedicated buttons over key combinations when realizing a clear-cut interface and simple architecture for Hapax. Having striven to minimize the importance of screens when performing live, however, the dual greyscale displays implemented in Hapax help with keeping track of things in a studio context.
Clearly, then, deconstructing everything that they already knew about sequencing to offer everything needed to compose songs in the studio and perform them onstage as an authentic centerpiece of any setup has paid off for Squarp Instruments, with the Hapax high-end professional standalone sequencer surely set to make its mark in the music technology world while literally living up to its polychronic performance sequencer billing when expected for delivery in June 2022.
Hapax is available on backorder for expected delivery in June 2022 — priced at €864.00 EUR (plus VAT for individual customers in the European Union)/$979.00 USD — directly from Squarp Instruments’ online Store here: https://store.squarp.net
|Arturia reveal KeyStep Pro at NAMM 2020|
|The newest, and most hotly anticipated member of the Arturia Step family is to be revealed at NAMM 2020 in Anaheim, California. |
The sequencer the world has been waiting for. KeyStep Pro gives keyboard players incredible sequencing and performance power in a compact, versatile controller.
KeyStep Pro is a 37-key MIDI controller and multi-channel polyphonic sequencer all in one. It will allow musicians to take full control of their modular rigs, outboard synths, and software studio all at the same time. The 4 independent polyphonic sequencer tracks give you full control over your instruments, and Track 1 can also function as a 16-part integrated drum sequencer. It’s incredibly intuitive, has unparalleled connectivity, and promises to make even complex performances a breeze.
If you prefer keys to pads, you’ll love KeyStep Pro. It sports a great-feeling 3 octave keyboard with velocity sensitivity and aftertouch. Letting you fully articulate your musical ideas, this expressive little sequencer truly puts your whole music-making ecosystem at your fingertips. Arturia’s designers studied the way musicians actually used their Step controllers, and created KeyStep Pro to remove the barriers between you and the music you want to create.
|TRACKS4 independent sequencers, controlling whatever synth, module, or drum machine you want.PATTERNS16 patterns per track. Each sequencer pattern can be up to 64 steps long, and contain 16 notes per step.CHAINSLink up to 16 patterns together to create whole songs or sections of your set.SCENESSnapshots of all the sequences within a pattern, letting you instantly switch between sets of sequences.PROJECTSEverything in one place. Load, duplicate, tweak, edit, and save for later in its onboard memory.|
|To get hands on with KeyStep Pro, look out for Arturia at NAMM 2020. |
Meet the Arturia team in Hall A, booth 11910. This new member of the Step family will begin shipping worldwide in Spring 2020.
|MeeBlip cubit go: easy USB MIDI interface, ultra-tight timing|
August 18, 2019 —Today, we’re announcing MeeBlip cubit go – a unique USB MIDI interface with incredibly tight timing. It’s got the ports you most often need when mobile – one input, so you can perform, and four outputs, for sending notes and/or clock.
Here’s the twist: we’ve integrated hardware MIDI thru circuitry on the four outputs. Anything you send to the interface’s output goes to all four jacks simultaneously. There’s no software delay – you get rock-solid, ultra-tight timing. That makes cubit go the perfect follow-up to our cubit splitter, introduced earlier this year. You still get four outs with identical timing – but now in a USB MIDI interface you can connect to your computer or mobile device. cubit go is driverless and USB powered, so it works with any desktop OS, but also on phones and tablets (with the appropriate cables, sold separately). And the jacks are top-mounted for convenience. Just plug it in and use it – there’s nothing to install, no separate power supply needed, and nothing to worry about.
cubit go is palm-sized, lightweight, rugged, performs perfectly, and is easy to use.
Features:1×1 USB MIDI interface with integrated hardware MIDI ThruClass-compliant USB MIDI – no drivers neededFour hardware-mirrored output jacks – no software lagHigh performance 32-bit ARM Cortex processorBright green MIDI light flashes when sending or receiving data for easy troubleshootingSize: 108 x 76 x 25 mm (4.25 x 3 x 1 inches), weighs 110 g (3.9 oz)Includes 1 m (3 ft) USB cableUSB poweredWorks with macOS, Windows, Linux, iOS and Android*Made in Canada, available only direct cubit go is available now for $59.95 US.
Find the product page here:https://meeblip.com/collections/our-products/products/meeblip-cubit-go Through August 23, we’re offering free worldwide shipping on cubit go and MeeBlip geode. Local tax and import duty may apply to international customers.
Also, if you missed it, we visited the amazing Hainbach last week, and our little MeeBlip geode got to meet his giant wall of sound. It was really fun to do:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zWOrPTXk-XA===MeeBlip is a collaboration of James Grahame of Blipsonic and Peter Kirn of CDM (https://cdm.link). We make an award-winning series of synthesizers and accessories, so we can share the fun of making electronic music.
AKAI PROFESSIONAL® ADDS BUILT-IN SOUNDS TO THE WORLD’S MOST POPULAR MIDI CONTROLLER WITH THE MPK MINI PLAY
New ultra-portable instrument is based on incredibly popular MPK Mini, but adds 128 built-in sounds and its own speaker, making it the perfect instrument to play anywhere
Cumberland, RI USA (October 11, 2018) — Akai Professional, a leading manufacturer of music equipment for performers and producers, today announced the immediate availability of their all-new MPK Min portable MIDI controller. The ultra-portable MPK Mini Play is based on the world’s most popular midi controller—Akai Professional’s MPK Mini—but now it comes packed with 128 sounds and its own built-in speaker. With 8 backlit MPC drum pads and a 4-way joystick for simple control, players have all they need to play their music anytime, anywhere. Four knobs (two banks capable of controlling eight different parameters) can be used to tweak sounds and edit multiple parameters in real-time, giving musicians even more performance possibilities. Powered by 3 “AA” batteries, the MPK Mini Play is built for hours of wireless fun.
Not just a mini keyboard, the MPK Mini Play can also connect to a computer via USB port for the same plug-and-play MIDI functionality as the classic MPK Mini controllers. If not disturbing others is a priority, players can use the mini-audio output jack to connect headphones to the MPK Mini Play. When you want a bigger sound, simply connect to external speakers using the same output jack. All-in-one, easy- to-use fun with “pro” features—that’s the MPK Mini Play!
– Built-in sound module with over 128 different sounds
– 25 mini keys with arpeggiator
– 4-way joystick
– 8 red backlit drum pads (2 banks, 16 total)
– 4 knobs edit sounds or send midi (2 banks, 8 total)
– Battery powered using (3) AA batteries
“We are extremely excited to introduce the MPK Mini Play,” said Dan Gill, Product Manager for Akai Professional. “The MPK Mini was a huge hit with musicians and now having all those sounds on-board with a built-in speaker, along with its go-anywhere portability, Play opens up new musical possibilities that people are going to love.”
U.S. retail for MPK Mini Play is $129 Available for purchase October 11, 2018
The Fluxus one Sequencer from Zeta Ohm
* Breaking news, ZetaOhm have ALREADY reached the goal and are not even halfway through the campaign!*
Recently at Knobcon 2016 I was very lucky to meet an enterprising young man by the name Tenkai. Not only did he save the day (I had a catastrophic computer failure) but he debuted an amazing new eurorack modular sequencer he was working on. Continue reading
Checking out the Arturia Minilab MK2 with this unboxing. I give my Live honest first impressions of the new portable controller from Arturia. I look at the capacitive touch pads as well as the overall build quality of the unit.