Squarp Pyramid - New sequencer etc.

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Funky40
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Post by Funky40 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 3:49 pm

the upper a quote from this thread, the lower from the digitakt thread.
Fentune wrote:
durwin wrote:Anyone tried the Pyramid vs Digitakt sequencing bout?
Pyramid KO's Digitakt :ripbanana:
Panason wrote: For MIDI sequencing, the Pyramid poos all over the DT and anything else from Elektron.
I stumbled over the pyramid two days ago or so, and now you guys have me wondering:

hell, you say its better than a DT for midi sequenzing ! the squarp can do p-locks ?
( i had a look at the manual, but i´m not good in doing the manual thing, haha)

so is the squarp fast in use ?
i need superfast . i need p-locks ! i need GOOD overview
lets say i set some midi CCs, lets say 8, can i see them/the values on one page ?
how many CCs can i see on one page ?

can i loop single bars etc. for editing purposes, thats still not clear after the reading i did.


the euclidean sequenzer, can i chose such for each track ? or is it allways on for several tracks


much interested in this box


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Post by Funky40 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 3:54 pm

another thing:
is there a big difference between mkI and MKII units ?

should i go for a secondhand mkI when the price difference is not that much ?
the difference might make 80€


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Post by slidearind » Tue Feb 06, 2018 4:26 pm

Funky40 wrote:another thing:
is there a big difference between mkI and MKII units ?

should i go for a secondhand mkI when the price difference is not that much ?
the difference might make 80€
There's no effective difference between the two. The motion recording pad area is recessed in the mk2 and not in the mk1.

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Post by odditymedium » Tue Feb 06, 2018 5:13 pm

i'm selling my few-months old pyramid. it is amazing, but life changes mean that i have to let it go.

i'm just looking for a good home for hit. hit me up if anyone interested.

i'm in eu, but can ship worldwide. details in the for sale forum

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Post by Panason » Wed Feb 07, 2018 2:32 pm

Funky40 wrote:
so is the squarp fast in use ?
i need superfast . i need p-locks ! i need GOOD overview
lets say i set some midi CCs, lets say 8, can i see them/the values on one page ?
how many CCs can i see on one page ?

can i loop single bars etc. for editing purposes, thats still not clear after the reading i did.

the euclidean sequenzer, can i chose such for each track ? or is it allways on for several tracks

much interested in this box
Yes you can do p-locks. Yes it is fast to work with. It can do chords and has cool MIDI effects. From the Elektron boxes only the Digitone can do some very basic chord sequencing and it has bugs.

I don't think you can see more than one CC on screen at the same time.

I don't have one so so I can't answer all your questions.

I 'm not buying one because of the lack of MIDI CC overview, not able to name MIDI CC assignments, not enough knobs, small screen, 7000 midi event limit per project. Touch pad will be a problem some years later (already someone has reported that it was firing off messages without being touched).
You cannot make the playhead jump to another step in a sequence or re-trigger steps live for stuttering effects. Song mode is limited. Squarp have already moved on to doing stuff for modular so I don't see much future in the Pyramid. It's another company trying to be trendy.

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Post by Funky40 » Wed Feb 07, 2018 6:29 pm

Panason wrote: "1." I don't think you can see more than one CC on screen at the same time.

"2." I don't have one so so I can't answer all your questions.

"3." I 'm not buying one because of the lack of MIDI CC overview,.
ok, so point 1 and 3 are clearly points for the Elektrons.
This *makes* a difference, at least for me. a Huge one finally !
So i´m still under the impression that there is not any bit of a "real competition" vs. Elektron

Thanks for the clarification that you never had one. It soundet the other way around for me at first.

i had to delay the decission to get a pyramid anyway.
your points with the touchpad and also with them going direction euro are good thougths.
So i might rethink my GAS for the pyramid entirely.


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Post by oldgearguy » Wed Feb 07, 2018 8:14 pm

Funky40 wrote:
Panason wrote: "1." I don't think you can see more than one CC on screen at the same time.

"2." I don't have one so so I can't answer all your questions.

"3." I 'm not buying one because of the lack of MIDI CC overview,.
ok, so point 1 and 3 are clearly points for the Elektrons.
This *makes* a difference, at least for me. a Huge one finally !
So i´m still under the impression that there is not any bit of a "real competition" vs. Elektron

Thanks for the clarification that you never had one. It soundet the other way around for me at first.

i had to delay the decission to get a pyramid anyway.
your points with the touchpad and also with them going direction euro are good thougths.
So i might rethink my GAS for the pyramid entirely.
The Elektron sequencers are designed *mainly* to support sequencing their internal sound engines. They are not IMHO at the same level as stand-alone, purpose-built sequencers.

If you are mainly using the Elektrons to sequence their internal sounds, then that tight integration is great. If you are planning on sequencing a lot of external gear via MIDI, I would not choose the Elektrons for that job. Yes, it kind of can do it, but that's not what it does best.

(former owner of a MachineDrum, MonoMachine, and 2 Octatracks, currently own a single Octatrack; current owner of a Pyramid and Cirklon and Notron and QY-700).

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Post by mongrol » Thu Feb 08, 2018 5:41 pm

I constantly see people bigging up the Elektron gear for midi sequencing. Yes, it may do it. Yes they do "p-locks", which as far as I can tell is just "set a cc parameter on that step" but they are miles behind a dedicated sequencer as to be considered a toy.

As soon as someone says "p-lock" in a thread I think "uhuh, this guy hasn't used a proper sequencer" :)

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Post by rew_ » Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:06 pm

mongrol wrote:which as far as I can tell is just "set a cc parameter on that step"
yeah, that's all it is. it's good marketing!

(it's also good design, as it's exceptionally easy to program. your larger point stands, and I agree that their sequencers are largely tailored for their internal sound engines.)

but I don't think it's ~crazy~ to suggest that Elektron boxes are decent midi sequencers. I'm a new-ish Elektron owner—just the Digitakt—but it's more powerful for sequencing other gear than my Beatstep Pro, and more immediate than my MPC 1000. it's not as fully featured as a Cirklon or, hell, Ableton, but in 2018 when your options for hardware midi sequencing are largely "quick and cheap" or "boutique and highly specialized" they find a nice middle ground.

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Post by Panason » Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:29 pm

Electron's per-note (not per-step) automation (aka parameter locks)for their internal engines is different because the sequencer knows what the preset default value is for the particular parameter, and the automation is per note and not per step so the automation returns to the preset value at the end of the note it is placed with. With MIDI sequencers this is not possible as the sequencer does not know what the synth's preset values are, so the value remains at where you set it and has to be returned to the default value with another automation event later in the sequence. I don't have an Elektron box that does MIDI sequencing so I don't know if they have an option to set default values for the CCs you want to automate or if you have to manually set baseline automation events and then overwrite certain steps with your CC changes.

Otherwise the Pyramid is a lot more capable than any Elektron MIDI sequencer.

PS I hate the term "parameter lock", and "trig"
Last edited by Panason on Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by dc_Sux » Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:31 pm

mongrol wrote:I constantly see people bigging up the Elektron gear for midi sequencing. Yes, it may do it. Yes they do "p-locks", which as far as I can tell is just "set a cc parameter on that step" but they are miles behind a dedicated sequencer as to be considered a toy.

As soon as someone says "p-lock" in a thread I think "uhuh, this guy hasn't used a proper sequencer" :)
I'm pretty sure the p-lock thing is only really meant to refer to the internal sequencing, and for that it works really well. Given that they don't use midi to sequence internally, you couldn't really call it "CC-locking", or "per step CC" etc.
Even on the Cirklon P3 patterns, which most people consider to be a pretty full featured sequencer, you can only set 4 midi CC's per step, and in doing so, you use up all your aux events. Yes, you can then create another track and use that for more CC's/auxs for the same instrument, but it is a bit clumsy.
On the Elektron sequencer you can essentially lock as many parameters as you like to each step (there is a memory limit, but it is pretty high, and I've never hit it).
And you can lock preset sounds per step and they change instantly. It's for these reasons, that although I have a Cirklon, I'd always use the internal sequencer to sequence my Rytm.
But I use the Cirklon to sequence the A4 :hmm:
Never used an Elektron box to sequence midi gear (the Rytm can't anyway), so don't know what that is like, but it works well for internal sequencing.

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Post by Panason » Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:44 pm

dc_Sux wrote:
Even on the Cirklon P3 patterns, which most people consider to be a pretty full featured sequencer, you can only set 4 midi CC's per step, and in doing so, you use up all your aux events. Yes, you can then create another track and use that for more CC's/auxs for the same instrument, but it is a bit clumsy.
Ah. But I assume you can use more than 4 ccs per track, just not on the same step?

I often hit the memory limit on the Rytm for number of automation events in a pattern!

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Post by dc_Sux » Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:50 pm

Panason wrote:
dc_Sux wrote:
Even on the Cirklon P3 patterns, which most people consider to be a pretty full featured sequencer, you can only set 4 midi CC's per step, and in doing so, you use up all your aux events. Yes, you can then create another track and use that for more CC's/auxs for the same instrument, but it is a bit clumsy.
Ah. But I assume you can use more than 4 ccs per track, just not on the same step?

I often hit the memory limit on the Rytm for number of automation events in a pattern!
Nope. It's 4 per track.
You can set up another track with another 4 going to the same instrument, but it is clumsy.
can you not get around your memory limit issues by saving more sounds and using sound locks?

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Post by Panason » Thu Feb 08, 2018 7:24 pm

Yikes. Suddenly I am relieved that I can cross the Cirklon off my wish list!

Yeah I should be using sound locks more, thanks! I only got the Rytm recently and still haven't explored all of this most awesome drum machine!

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Post by lairdhenn » Wed Feb 28, 2018 6:24 am

I just got my pyramid mk1 tonight (serial number 11!) and it has been great so far. I've been so entrenched in Elektron's sequencing architecture for the past year that this is a real struggle to adapt to, though not in a totally bad way.

I have one question, though. I bought it because previously I was sequencing 90% of my setup with the digitakt via midi and was using an Analog 4 to cv-sequence my modular stuff and my Sh-101 via its ext clk-in at the same time. I was hoping this would be an all-in-one box and could use the cv out env of the squarp to trigger the 101's sequencer like the A4/tr-909 does (in other words each step of the sequence triggers the 101's internal sequencer to advance). From what I see this is impossible? Or am I not doing something properly? If my assumption is correct, what would be the best/cheapest pyramid to 101 midi shortcut? I was thinking cv.ocd but that's always out of stock, or even a beatstep, but the beatstep seems quite large for a middleman. I'm aware of the 101 mods available but am trying to avoid spending $200+ at the moment.

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Post by Panason » Wed Feb 28, 2018 8:49 am

I was ready to go for the Pyramid until I came to my senses. This machine has a 7000 MIDI event limit per project (you cannot load another project without stopping the sequencer) .... the Kawai Q80EX released at least 25 years ago can handle up to 52000 MIDI notes... the Pyramid costs at least €700, so it's a no for me.

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Post by stopthesignal » Thu Mar 01, 2018 4:48 pm

Panason wrote:I was ready to go for the Pyramid until I came to my senses. This machine has a 7000 MIDI event limit per project (you cannot load another project without stopping the sequencer) .... the Kawai Q80EX released at least 25 years ago can handle up to 52000 MIDI notes... the Pyramid costs at least €700, so it's a no for me.
That particular point may be of paramount importance to you, but to be fair that's not really an apples to apples comparison. The options the Pyramid provides for structuring sequences means for a set of bars on a given track that are ever going to repeat at any point in your sequence, you only have to write the pattern once and then have it set to repeat accordingly at the right points in the sequence. The only MIDI events that count against the limit are those written to the pattern - the events in the repeated occurrences of the pattern in a sequence do not count against the limit, while they would have to in a strictly linear sequencer. Additionally, while the Q80EX supported 52,000 notes in its internal memory and all of those could be applied to one song, that was also the limit for the entire internal memory, so if you used all 52,000 for one song, there were none left for the other possible 9 songs that the internal memory could otherwise accommodate.

Furthermore, the Pyramid has more available MIDI channels, a far greater number of max projects, a much wider tempo range, greater max polyphony, unique MIDI effects, straightforward polyrhythm and polymeter implementation, euclidean patterns, and an immediate/intuitive interface. So while the MIDI event-per-project limit may kill it for you, the overall package is well worth the asking price IMHO. Not trying to dismiss your choice as it may be right for you - I just wanted to bring some perspective for others who might read your opinion without understanding all the things that the Pyramid brings to the table.

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Post by stopthesignal » Thu Mar 01, 2018 4:54 pm

lairdhenn wrote:I have one question, though. I bought it because previously I was sequencing 90% of my setup with the digitakt via midi and was using an Analog 4 to cv-sequence my modular stuff and my Sh-101 via its ext clk-in at the same time. I was hoping this would be an all-in-one box and could use the cv out env of the squarp to trigger the 101's sequencer like the A4/tr-909 does (in other words each step of the sequence triggers the 101's internal sequencer to advance). From what I see this is impossible? Or am I not doing something properly? If my assumption is correct, what would be the best/cheapest pyramid to 101 midi shortcut? I was thinking cv.ocd but that's always out of stock, or even a beatstep, but the beatstep seems quite large for a middleman. I'm aware of the 101 mods available but am trying to avoid spending $200+ at the moment.
Have you tried assigning a Pyramid track to output on the CV/Gate, step sequencing a note on each beat of that track, and running just the Gate Out of the Pyramid into the SH-101 clk-in?

Though I don't have an SH-101, I think that should work. I've used the same method to use the Gate Out to do sequenced triggering of the crash input on my Retroverb Lancet.

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Post by droningspaghettimonster » Thu Mar 01, 2018 4:59 pm

stopthesignal wrote:
lairdhenn wrote:I have one question, though. I bought it because previously I was sequencing 90% of my setup with the digitakt via midi and was using an Analog 4 to cv-sequence my modular stuff and my Sh-101 via its ext clk-in at the same time. I was hoping this would be an all-in-one box and could use the cv out env of the squarp to trigger the 101's sequencer like the A4/tr-909 does (in other words each step of the sequence triggers the 101's internal sequencer to advance). From what I see this is impossible? Or am I not doing something properly? If my assumption is correct, what would be the best/cheapest pyramid to 101 midi shortcut? I was thinking cv.ocd but that's always out of stock, or even a beatstep, but the beatstep seems quite large for a middleman. I'm aware of the 101 mods available but am trying to avoid spending $200+ at the moment.
Have you tried assigning a Pyramid track to output on the CV/Gate, step sequencing a note on each beat of that track, and running just the Gate Out of the Pyramid into the SH-101 clk-in?

Though I don't have an SH-101, I think that should work. I've used the same method to use the Gate Out to do sequenced triggering of the crash input on my Retroverb Lancet.

It should work - thats how i reset my pnw, driven by dinsync from envelope out. great combo btw

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Post by Panason » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:13 pm

stopthesignal wrote: Not trying to dismiss your choice as it may be right for you - I just wanted to bring some perspective for others who might read your opinion without understanding all the things that the Pyramid brings to the table.
Thanks for the thoughtful retort. If only all forum members could argue without getting personal...

Obviously the Pyramid runs circles around the Kawai in terms of UI and functionality. I just mentioned it because it seems that Squarp have really skimped on memory capacity.

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Post by lairdhenn » Sat Mar 03, 2018 11:21 pm

Does anyone with a pyramid know how to fix bad cv tracking? I can’t get it to track anything decently over a full octave, over multiple octaves it’s terrible. In the manual it has a one sentence guide to cv calibrating but when I follow it it simply doesn’t work. You’re supposed to hold in encoder 5 and start it up and this just causes it to start normally. I can’t find any talk of this online and haven’t heard back yet from squarp. Fine tuning in the cv settings doesn’t do much either.

My DPO tracks horribly with it so I wanted to rule that out as the problem so I opened and calibrated my 101 today very precisely. Plugged it in via cv to squarp so C3 is spot on and by the time it hits C4 it’s playing a flat B flat. C5 is nearly an A. I love the squarp but this is incredibly annoying. Thanks for any help.

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Post by Panason » Sun Mar 04, 2018 6:23 pm

^ a midi to cv converter is probably your best bet. . .

They announced OS 3.0 a while back, I think it was meant to come in January... Since they released the Hermod in the meantime, I wouldn't hold my breath for any further improvements on the Pyramid. They stopped taking feature requests some time ago and do not communicate on their forum...

I do think the Pyramid hardware is not good enough for the price.

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Post by lairdhenn » Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:36 pm

Panason wrote:^ a midi to cv converter is probably your best bet. . .
Yeah, I came to the same conclusion and ordered yarns yesterday, just disappointed that the cv output is all but useless if I need it for accuracy. Oh well, hopefully an answer from squarp or update comes someday. The 3.0 OS was pushed back but should be out by the end of this month according to them.

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Post by mafgar » Wed Mar 14, 2018 2:26 pm

lairdhenn wrote:Does anyone with a pyramid know how to fix bad cv tracking? I can’t get it to track anything decently over a full octave, over multiple octaves it’s terrible. In the manual it has a one sentence guide to cv calibrating but when I follow it it simply doesn’t work. You’re supposed to hold in encoder 5 and start it up and this just causes it to start normally. I can’t find any talk of this online and haven’t heard back yet from squarp. Fine tuning in the cv settings doesn’t do much either.

My DPO tracks horribly with it so I wanted to rule that out as the problem so I opened and calibrated my 101 today very precisely. Plugged it in via cv to squarp so C3 is spot on and by the time it hits C4 it’s playing a flat B flat. C5 is nearly an A. I love the squarp but this is incredibly annoying. Thanks for any help.
I've had a Pyramid for 2 years since mk1 and have always had issues with Cv pitch tracking, the team used to be very responsive but seemed to have stopped and I can't even post on their forum anymore for some reason.

My pyramid barely tracks accurately and if you go below D2 > C2 it changes it to C#. I thought I had finally figured out a great workflow for a liveset integrating my modular and started running into all sorts of pitch problems and ultimately through trial and error discovered that the Pyramid is not sending accurate CV at all.. such a bummer. I was a pretty big Pyramid fanboy for awhile since they were so responsive and timely with updates but it seems like those days are over..

EDIT: They responded!

"Hi Matthew, thanks for your message!

It's not a hardware issue, the lower voltage that Pyramid can send is 80mV, so you can't get the C1 note.

Have a great day,

Jean"

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Post by Knights Who Say Neve » Thu Mar 15, 2018 2:21 pm

mafgar wrote: "Hi Matthew, thanks for your message!

It's not a hardware issue, the lower voltage that Pyramid can send is 80mV, so you can't get the C1 note.

Have a great day,

Jean"
If it's a software issue, they could (probably) fix it. They are choosing not to, or there is some sort of communication problem here and it actually is a hardware issue. Either way the blasé attitude is irritating. Who designs a CV out and leaves a fixed DC offset on it?
Space and time contain a manifold of pure a priori intuition, but at the same time are conditions of the receptivity of our mind- conditions under which alone it can receive representations of other objects, and which therefore must also always affect the concept of these objects. But if this manifold is to be known, the spontaneity of our thought requires that it be gone thorough in a certain way, taken up and connected. This act I name synthesis. -Kant

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