How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post your patches here! Put the format(s) in the subject.

Moderators: Kent, luketeaford, Joe.

Post Reply
DaytimeBender
Learning to Wiggle
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2021 12:29 pm
Contact:

How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by DaytimeBender » Sat Jul 10, 2021 8:44 pm

I like vanilla percussion rhythms triggered by clock dividers. Just driving rhythms, where everything is right on the beat.

But it does start to get stale to the ear after a few minutes. What are some good techniques and module types to add subtle and slight variation to clock divider triggers to let percussion patterns drift and evolve a bit?

I have a Steppy, Girds, and Plog in addition to my clock divider. But I'm struggling to find anything I find satisfying, when I try to create a mix of triggers between them. I keep coming back to the vanilla clock divider triggers, because I like it better than any of the variations. But I'm new to modular, so I'm sure I'm missing things. Any thoughts on how you'd approach adding some slight variation to clock divider triggers?

This is My Current Rack
My Beeps & Boops: DaytimeBender

User avatar
KSS
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 6149
Joined: Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:28 am

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by KSS » Sat Jul 10, 2021 8:51 pm

-The doepfer saw animator module. When used as a quad variable trigger-gate delay/ Very powerful.
-Slews into comparators for similar shifts in timing
-Mixers. Always mixers.

User avatar
cinnatoastg
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 479
Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2020 10:31 am
Location: Ann Arbor

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by cinnatoastg » Sun Jul 11, 2021 8:54 am

Literally JUST posted a video on this. It’s super basic tips, but nonetheless should give you some thread to pull on.


User avatar
luketeaford
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2249
Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2014 9:54 pm
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Contact:

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by luketeaford » Sun Jul 11, 2021 9:55 am

Haven't had a chance to watch cinnatoastg's video yet, so apologies if these tips are covered in there:

1. Divide clock into triggers and use function generators/comparators like KSS is suggesting to change the decay length or delay.

2. Combine triggers with gates with logic (and/or/xor etc).

3. Use switches to re-route trigger divisions so even if the rhythm doesn't change, the instruments it's triggering does.

4. Clock divider driven by other clock dividers/resets.

5. S&H: patch random gate signal (unsynced with anything else) to the sample input and use a clock division for the hold command. Where the two overlap, you will get gate output.

User avatar
SunPulse
Common Wiggler
Posts: 169
Joined: Sun Jul 09, 2017 12:56 am
Location: Calgary

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by SunPulse » Sun Jul 11, 2021 12:16 pm

I don't have one (and never thought to look for one until I saw your question), but there are sequencer modules that have random abilities. The Ladik S-620 Composer G is a "Semi-Random Trigger Pattern Generator" that sounds like it might be in the direction you are looking for. It looks like a versatile module, and Ladik is really good to deal with. It's only 4HP wide and Ladik lists it for £55.00 for a silver faceplate.

http://ladik.ladik.eu/?page_id=2664
Instagram: sunpulse.ay

User avatar
BananaPlug
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2814
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:37 pm
Location: PHL USA

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by BananaPlug » Sun Jul 11, 2021 1:39 pm

Trigger one of your sounds by a slow VCO. Then use a division of your main clock to reset that VCO. This lets you play around with the rate of the triggers, letting it drift off a bit but regularly snap back to the beat.
“We have to articulate ourselves. Otherwise we would be cows in the field” Werner Herzog :nana:

User avatar
ATW
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 942
Joined: Mon Dec 02, 2019 5:01 pm
Location: Northampton, MA
Contact:

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by ATW » Sun Jul 11, 2021 6:30 pm

Yesterday I ran a clock through a VCF around the point of self oscillation, and then sent a slow attenuated smooth random CV to the resonance CV in. Basically slewwing the clock a bit, then driving a couple of sequences with the wonky clock. Created some subtle variations.
ᴍᴏᴅᴜʟᴀʀ ɢʀɪᴅ ⟡ 9U 168 + Palette + Pod ⟡ ᴍᴜsɪᴄ ATW on SoundCloud

User avatar
Agawell
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1639
Joined: Mon May 04, 2015 3:22 am

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by Agawell » Mon Jul 12, 2021 3:17 am

branches - coin toss between 2 destinations with weighting
Modular Audio and Video Synthesis on Instagram

Utility modules are the inexpensive, dull polish that makes the expensive, shiny modules actually shine!!!

an oscillator is an oscillator - utilities are possibilities

choose the case to fit the modules - not the modules to fit the case!!!

User avatar
Morim
Common Wiggler
Posts: 126
Joined: Fri Oct 23, 2020 12:01 pm

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by Morim » Mon Jul 12, 2021 12:02 pm

+1 for MI Branches.

DaytimeBender
Learning to Wiggle
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2021 12:29 pm
Contact:

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by DaytimeBender » Mon Jul 12, 2021 12:31 pm

Thanks all for the suggestions! Gives me lots of new things to think about and try out.

SunPulse wrote:
Sun Jul 11, 2021 12:16 pm
I don't have one (and never thought to look for one until I saw your question), but there are sequencer modules that have random abilities. The Ladik S-620 Composer G is a "Semi-Random Trigger Pattern Generator" that sounds like it might be in the direction you are looking for. It looks like a versatile module, and Ladik is really good to deal with. It's only 4HP wide and Ladik lists it for £55.00 for a silver faceplate.

http://ladik.ladik.eu/?page_id=2664
This module seems pretty wild! It's kind of like mixing one channel of MI Grids with a turing machine? And can convert triggers to gates!

I bought a Grids originally hoping that it would be the be all, end of percussion sequencing for me. But I have a hard time finding rhythms I like in it. Or maybe more aptly, I have difficulty finding the rhythm I want at that particular moment. This module might give me a little more control than what Grids offers, or at least give some more baseline control based on what clock division you feed into the Ladik. Cool module!
My Beeps & Boops: DaytimeBender

User avatar
Dave Peck
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 4583
Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:22 pm
Location: SF bay area

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by Dave Peck » Mon Jul 12, 2021 7:16 pm

To get a series of clock pulses that slightly vary their timing, sometimes a bit ahead of the beat, sometimes a bit behind the beat - BUT - overall, they still stay synchronized to the beat over time, so it's not just randomly drifting and unsynchronized from the main beat:

1. Patch the main clock signal to a LFO that has a reset or Hard Sync input.
2. Use an UP SAW output from that sync'd LFO.
3. patch that saw LFO to a CV mixer input, and connect a slow random signal to a second input, so it is slowly 'baising' the LFO positive and negative at the mixer output.
3. Send that mixer output through a module that has a 'COMPARE to zero' function that produces a trigger pulse every time the input goes from negative to positive.
4. Now, since the LFO saw wave is randomly being shifted positive and negative a bit in the mixer, the point along the saw ramp that crosses the zero volt line is randomly 'sliding' back and forth from it's center position, sometimes a little closer to the start/bottom of the ramp (sooner than the main clock beat) and sometimes closer to the end/top of the ramp (later than the main clock). This causes the COMPARE function to produce a series of pulses that slightly and randomly vary their timing relative to the original clock pulses, sometimes early, sometimes late, but they still stay in sync with the main clock over time because the original SAW is hard sync'd to the clock.

This can be used for producing human-feel timing, dense flammed double tracking effects, etc. You can get different amounts of 'slop' and different randomized behavior by varying the amount of the slow random signal in the mixer, and varying the rate or type of the slow random signal.

I've used this trick with really good results in some Nord Modular patches by applying it to ADSR triggers within a voice in a polyphonic patch and playing chords. All of the notes in the chord stay sync'd to the main clock beat and the existing tracks, but each note within the chord has some different random clock pulse phase so some notes in the chord are flammed a bit early or late.

User avatar
KSS
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 6149
Joined: Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:28 am

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by KSS » Mon Jul 12, 2021 10:19 pm

The Doepfer A137-2 Saw animator -I referred to it earlier but didn't remember the number- has four shift units as Dave Peck described. It's an extremely useful module in many ways besides shifting triggers and gates too. Not at all expensive.

You can see how to patch it up in Doepfer's module block diagram if you want to create the effect from other modules. It's a take on Bernie Hutchins Saw Animator, and Doepfer have done a *really* good job with this module. Bringing the comparators -at least!- and saws out using the Doepfer PCB pins is must do. Any 8 jack mult can be used for this.

You won't regret the space this takes in your rack since the comparators are so useful anyways.

I always want -at least!- one instance of this patch -or module in *any* system and mod VCO1 of 2600s and TTSH's with a new jack labeled SawToo to get the shifted saw <--Actually a ramp. Then use the EF's comparator -another must do 2600-TTSH mod- to complete the process and have subtle or wildly shifting gates and triggers.

There is just so much you can do with this patch and having a dedicated module or set to do so is a big plus for any system! It works with triangles and sines too. It wont 'shift' rectangle waves like pulses and squares, but they can still be used in feedback patches.

--------------------------
I think it's important enough that i'll be making this version with expander for my 50SQ system. Might change the name to Slippery Slopes.
Attachments
A1372_sketch_1.gif
A1372_sketch_1.gif (6.82 KiB) Viewed 346 times
A1372_sketch_2.gif
A1372_sketch_2.gif (7.75 KiB) Viewed 346 times
A1372_sketch_3.jpg
A1372_sketch_3.jpg (54.4 KiB) Viewed 346 times
doepfer_a-137-2.jpg
APT-50SQ-1007-5a-X-4bb-CLR.JPG
Treat utility modules as stars instead of backup singers.
Treat power supplies like Rockstars instead of roadies!
Chase magic sound, not magic parts.

User avatar
Dave Peck
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 4583
Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:22 pm
Location: SF bay area

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by Dave Peck » Tue Jul 13, 2021 1:31 am

Whoa! Look at that thing!

User avatar
BananaPlug
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2814
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:37 pm
Location: PHL USA

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by BananaPlug » Tue Jul 13, 2021 8:24 am

Would be pretty tough adjusting the knobs with patch cables surrounding them like that.
“We have to articulate ourselves. Otherwise we would be cows in the field” Werner Herzog :nana:

User avatar
akrenaut
Common Wiggler
Posts: 145
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2018 9:37 pm

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by akrenaut » Tue Jul 13, 2021 8:57 am

One thing to consider aside from clock dividing to add more organic changes are applying a slow modulation source, even better is it's a slow random CV to parameters on your drum modules. If you can modulate the decay or pitch. Slow is the key as you can mimic the nuances of a real drummer hitting drums at different velocity and for example hitting the cymbals in different places.

You could also run a slower division of your clock to trigger an AD or AR envelope which is opening and closing, but not entirely. Sometimes I think of it more as breathing in the modulation, just enough to change the volume slightly. This can add nice dynamics to any drum sound as it goes through a vca. This would be mimicking the drummer hitting their kit with different velocities.

Doesn't have to be in terms of trying to mimic a real drummer either. I would say these bring some organic element into any electronic percussion which make it less stagnant.

User avatar
KSS
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 6149
Joined: Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:28 am

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by KSS » Tue Jul 13, 2021 12:59 pm

BananaPlug wrote:
Tue Jul 13, 2021 8:24 am
Would be pretty tough adjusting the knobs with patch cables surrounding them like that.
Actually, none of those panel jacks -on the main module- are required for operation. The 10 lines top and bottom going to the Matrix switches handle all the normal I/O. You can see that all twelve of the jacks between the knobs have such IO top and bottom. In effect there are 20 jacks not seen in this view. In the absence of the matrix, 10 jack panels can sit above and below each module for a 6U overall height.

The panel jacks are extras for when you don't mind a little clutter in exchange for some added unusual utility. The ones you'd most likely use are the comparator outputs on the '07X far left and the mix pickoffs far right. Across the bottom you might want to break out one or more phases of the modulating osc. But even with them all patched you can still get fingers on each side with room to move the knobs.

The worst is the dark blue initial rate knob if all the phase output jacks below it are patched. That's not likely. But looking at this now I can see that exchanging those jacks with the 3ph VC osc graphic would fix any issue. I'll see if that will work. Thanks for the comment! Edit: Remembered having tried that swap before. There's still finger room on each side. But it's the one place I'll concede is tight! /edit

The gate and trig outs on the '07X module have jacks because H modules may sit in a non-matrix position. <--In the 2500 they were full width, I made them half size instead for 50SQ.

I'll add this due to your MW name. All the jacks shown can be replaced with bananas.
Treat utility modules as stars instead of backup singers.
Treat power supplies like Rockstars instead of roadies!
Chase magic sound, not magic parts.

User avatar
KSS
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 6149
Joined: Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:28 am

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by KSS » Tue Jul 13, 2021 1:25 pm

akrenaut wrote:
Tue Jul 13, 2021 8:57 am
Ball Joint
:tu: Enjoyed it!

User avatar
BananaPlug
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2814
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:37 pm
Location: PHL USA

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by BananaPlug » Tue Jul 13, 2021 2:53 pm

I see what you mean about the jacks. Kind of a knee jerk reaction on my part. Sorry.
“We have to articulate ourselves. Otherwise we would be cows in the field” Werner Herzog :nana:

User avatar
WarpHead
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 403
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2016 7:15 am
Location: Europe

Re: How to give slight variation to clock divider percussion?

Post by WarpHead » Wed Jul 21, 2021 6:08 pm

From my very first patch, I've mostly clocked everything from one of the 143-2 envelopes in looping ('pseudo-lfo' in Doepfer speak) mode. Slightest adjustment of parameters will give infinite resolution. Very powerful compositional tool, especially when combined with the switch between long/medium/short durations.
Don't believe the hype.

Post Reply

Return to “Synthesis Techniques”