Reaktor Blocks Love Eurorack

Cwejman, Livewire, TipTop Audio, Doepfer etc... Get your euro on!

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listentoaheartbeat
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Reaktor Blocks Love Eurorack

Post by listentoaheartbeat » Tue Sep 15, 2015 2:09 am

Here's a video I made using an early prototype of Reaktor Blocks and my Eurorack synth. I am working for NI and have been closely involved with Blocks, so take this as a disclaimer that I have somewhat of a bias here.. ;)

Several Bento Box 8 Steps sequencers are disturbing each other and controlling an Eurorack synth. All sequencing and modulation is coming from Reaktor Blocks, except for some humble human interaction. Maschine joins the party with bass drum, hi-hats, and rim shot. Echo and reverb added in Ableton Live.

[video][/video]

Observations and Patch Notes
  • My chair apparently thinks I should lose some weight.
  • All signals from Reaktor Blocks are directly fed to the Eurorack modules via DC-coupled converters (Expert Sleepers ES-3).
  • No quantization used on the hardware side. The pitch scaling in Reaktor Blocks (value of 0.1/oct) plays nicely with the ES-3. Since its output voltage range is roughly ±10 V you get approximately 1 V/oct. Obviously tracking is not perfectly accurate without calibration - in my case it was off 1 semitone over 4 oct.
  • In Reaktor, five Bento Box 8 Steps sequencers send their pitch, gate, and velocity signals out to the Eurorack synth via the ES-3, and additionally disturb each other in interesting ways by cross-modulation of the the global sequencer parameters (DIRECTION, STEPS, OFFSET).
  • The sequencers are clocked and reset from three Util Note In Blocks (we didn't have the clock divider ready when I shot this video).
  • A Bento Box Env is providing additional modulation via the ES-3.
  • Voice 1: e350 going into an Optodist and a Toppobrillo Multifilter, with some broken echo added by a Phonogene. Pitch and wavetable position controlled by 8 Steps sequencers. The Bento Box Env is controlling the Gain on the Optodist.
  • Voice 2: Res-4 pinged directly from 8 Steps sequencer (its variable gate length is handy for this). Pitch and glide are provided by another sequencer.
  • Voice 3: Cyclebox II in mode 0000, going into two chained channels on the QMMG, struck by an 8 Steps sequencer (again, its variable gate length comes in handy). Pitch and IFM index controlled by 8 Steps sequencers.

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nectarios
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Post by nectarios » Tue Sep 15, 2015 2:48 am

Do you need to use Silent Way suite of plugs to send CVs from Blocks to the modular via ES-4/3?

I think you posted a video but I can't view it for some reason.

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listentoaheartbeat
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Post by listentoaheartbeat » Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:11 am

nectarios wrote:Do you need to use Silent Way suite of plugs to send CVs from Blocks to the modular via ES-4/3?
No, all signals from Blocks are directly sent to the ES-3. I think the ES-4 uses a special encoder to squeeze multiple channels into the S/PDIF stream, so you would need to use that part of the Silent Way suite.
nectarios wrote:I think you posted a video but I can't view it for some reason.
Strange, shows up fine for me. Here's a direct link:

https://vimeo.com/listentoaheartbeat/blocksloveeuro

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suthnear
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Post by suthnear » Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:11 am

@nectarios - I'm am guessing that silent way isn't being used because of the comment that "Obviously tracking is not perfectly accurate without calibration"

@listentoaheartbeat - I'd be very interested in learning how you are routing from blocks through the es3 to the modular

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Post by computo » Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:17 am

Whatcha doin over there for NI? I worked in the US office for a number of years :)

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nectarios
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Post by nectarios » Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:18 am

listentoaheartbeat wrote:
nectarios wrote:Do you need to use Silent Way suite of plugs to send CVs from Blocks to the modular via ES-4/3?
No, all signals from Blocks are directly sent to the ES-3. I think the ES-4 uses a special encoder to squeeze multiple channels into the S/PDIF stream, so you would need to use that part of the Silent Way suite.
nectarios wrote:I think you posted a video but I can't view it for some reason.
Strange, shows up fine for me. Here's a direct link:

https://vimeo.com/listentoaheartbeat/blocksloveeuro
Right, it was my phone playing up, just watched the video.

Blocks looks well interesting, cheers for the demo.

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listentoaheartbeat
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Post by listentoaheartbeat » Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:23 am

suthnear wrote:@listentoaheartbeat - I'd be very interested in learning how you are routing from blocks through the es3 to the modular
Assign Reaktor outputs to the ES-3 in the Audio and MIDI Settings, connect Blocks signals to corresponding Reaktor outputs, done! :)

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suthnear
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Post by suthnear » Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:25 am

Cool, thanks

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Post by Hazza26 » Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:29 am

Didn't realise Blocks was Euro-friendly - exciting times!

Now when is the next Komplete iteration arriving...

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Post by karmadelic » Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:41 am

next thing should be REAKTOR blocks running on an iPad for more hands on control :hihi:

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Post by chapelier fou » Tue Sep 15, 2015 4:17 am

Is reaktor here running as a vst in ableton live ?
This looks amazing.

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listentoaheartbeat
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Post by listentoaheartbeat » Tue Sep 15, 2015 4:32 am

chapelier fou wrote:Is reaktor here running as a vst in ableton live ?
This looks amazing.
Yes, Reaktor and Maschine running in Ableton Live, even though I only use it to add some effects and record the audio. :)

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Post by mbartkow » Tue Sep 15, 2015 4:40 am

Native should really release a multichannel audio interface that is DC-soupled in both directions. This would allow for direct integration of Reaktor with analog hardware with no hassle. It's hard to overestimate how much that would help.

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Post by Joe. » Tue Sep 15, 2015 4:48 am

mbartkow wrote:Native should really release a multichannel audio interface that is DC-soupled in both directions. This would allow for direct integration of Reaktor with analog hardware with no hassle. It's hard to overestimate how much that would help.
Ah hah! now you're thinking with blocks :tu:

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nectarios
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Post by nectarios » Tue Sep 15, 2015 4:58 am

Yup.
If NI did make a cheap hardware 8-16 CV I/O interface (there's no need for expensive DACs either), to go with Blocks, I would be very interested.

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Post by Dogma » Tue Sep 15, 2015 4:58 am

And use this

for the ultimate block controller
What incredible times to be making music!
look up!

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Post by ben_hex » Tue Sep 15, 2015 6:04 am

Nice techno. Great integration with the set up too.
All DivKid video series to be found here!
http://www.youtube.com/divkidvideo

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Post by Beni Shoga » Tue Sep 15, 2015 6:14 am

Nice video, thanks for sharing.

I bit the bullet and upgraded to Reaktor 6 and love Blocks so far, and currently working my way through the Primary manual, plan on learning the whole of the application.

I plan on getting the ES3, as I have optical I/O on my audio interface that isn't doing anything. I want to know if the ES6, which is the input counterpart to the ES3, will play just as well in such a setup. I'm also running Live. What I want to do is for bi-directional CV, so for example, sending clock divisions from Reaktor to the ES3 which would feed René; the gate/CV from René feeding into the ES6 which could then go back into Reaktor.

From what I've worked out so far, I'd have to set up MIDI learn in Reaktor, and run Silent Ways CV to MIDI converter plugin. Is this right?

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Post by Upright » Tue Sep 15, 2015 6:17 am

Upright wrote:
listentoaheartbeat wrote:

Absolutely amazing patch sir! :yay:
Last edited by Upright on Tue Sep 15, 2015 6:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Reaktor Blocks Love Eurorack

Post by Upright » Tue Sep 15, 2015 6:21 am

double post
Last edited by Upright on Tue Sep 15, 2015 6:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Reaktor Blocks Love Eurorack

Post by Upright » Tue Sep 15, 2015 6:22 am

I just got a ES-3 and ES-6 combo....can't wait to do some of this. :D

Awesome patch
Last edited by Upright on Sun May 22, 2016 1:23 am, edited 2 times in total.

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listentoaheartbeat
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Post by listentoaheartbeat » Tue Sep 15, 2015 7:04 am

Beni Shoga wrote:I want to know if the ES6, which is the input counterpart to the ES3, will play just as well in such a setup. I'm also running Live. What I want to do is for bi-directional CV, so for example, sending clock divisions from Reaktor to the ES3 which would feed René; the gate/CV from René feeding into the ES6 which could then go back into Reaktor.
Tracking of pitch signals will not be 100% accurate in this use case since there is currently no solution for calibration. For modulation and gate signals, the ES-6 works perfectly with Reaktor and Blocks, sending CV straight into the Blocks via the ES-6. I set up a patch with two Planars controlling Blocks at our Reaktor 6 release party and it worked like a charm.

The ES-6 accepts +-10 V, which mean that almost every signal from your Eurorack modular can be converted properly. A signal that peaks at 10V, for example a triggered envelope from Maths, turns into a signal with a peak value of 1 (equivalent to 0 dBfs) in Reaktor, which matches the Blocks signal range perfectly. This also means that a pitch signal with 1 V/oct will turn into a signal with a value of 0.1/oct in Reaktor, which matches the Blocks pitch scaling. But again, since there is no calibration, tracking will not be perfect. It's probably similar to what I achieved with the ES-3 the other way round, but I have to test this.

Additionally, it's important to consider the latency of your audio interface when creating control loops like this between software and hardware.
Last edited by listentoaheartbeat on Tue Sep 15, 2015 7:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by djthopa » Tue Sep 15, 2015 7:16 am

Thanks for this!

So many things such little time :bang:

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Post by Beni Shoga » Tue Sep 15, 2015 9:46 am

Thanks listentoaheartbeat. That's incredibly useful to know. The Planar I planned on buying soon beckons, as well as the ES modules.

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Post by catchin » Tue Sep 15, 2015 10:35 am

This is so beautiful. ITB and OTB in a happy world together :tu: :love: :hail:

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