What if you could record & multi-track directly on your music
keyboard while you are playing it, without
touching a computer keyboard or mouse?
Sequetron is a program with a twist; designed as a live
instrument for hands-on use, all played & controlled from
where your hands are - the music
keyboard. It runs from switch-on with no interaction, and converts the
simplest MIDI keyboard or device into a multi-track recording, playback
& looping instrument.
It has sequencer-like
functions but is radically different to other programs as it is
completely controlled using series of music notes
called command sequences.There
no difference between commands and music - they are all sequences, hence
the name... it can even control itself.
This fresh approach
involved first designing a command language based on musical
notes, and only then writing a program to interpret it. The computer now takes a
back seat, so it really is a different concept...
A front-end instrument for ideas &
inspiration... and fun!
The screen, mouse & qwerty keyboard are used for configuration
& maintenance (the screen provides status info and customary
flashing lights during normal operation)... but none of them
LE version running 4 sequences/tracks
Full version running 7 (of 16)
The input can be any simple MIDI keyboard or device, and the output can be
any MIDI device(s) such as synthesizers, drum machines, light displays
Sequences can be recorded in real-time or step-time, played back,
looped and altered (channel, velocity, pitch, mute etc.), either
individually or in any combination, but unlike hardware sequencers,
there is no concept of 'steps', nor do the sequences have to be
monophonic; any notes & chords can be used. They can also be saved
to standard MIDI files for further processing by other programs.
User-defined drum patterns with
(user-defined bass patterns/riffs also possible)
This hands-on ability to record, play & alter different length
sequences starting at different times on-the-fly gives Sequetron an
unusual syncopated feel, encouraging you to experiment with overlaying
and controlling patterns; even the most basic 1, 2 or 3-note sequences
can create something totally unexpected...
...and if you don't like hands-on, you can automate multiple commands
with macros triggered by CC messages, e.g. from foot pedals, rotary
Sequetron can also generate and record hotkeys,
giving full control over Windows or any application which uses keyboard
shortcuts, e.g. for stepping through a slide/video show in time with your
A fully working Sample Aid
tool for sampling/auditioning MIDI instruments is included with
both full & LE versions.
The built-in template window updates in real-time, and provides a basic
virtual keyboard for test-driving without the need for a MIDI input
A similar system is available to remote programs or devices supporting
the keyboard label link (KLink) sysex protocol, e.g. the RTastra MIDI
controller shown below. The KLink spec & program are available from
Click the flash-player buttons if visible, otherwise click the
A promising backing trackmp3
One sequence has been pitch-locked to contrast with the others when they
are shifted; slight dischord at 00:40, but this is all part of the fun.
Strings at 00:50 were some rough(!) & ready improvs.
Cyclic pitch commands in actionmp3
This is all running 'hands-free'; a couple of sequences are automatically
switching between 2 pitch offsets.
Cyclic play & mute, cyclic pitch
Three snippets from the same session using the cyclic play & mute,
cyclic pitch and time-shift commands on some existing sequences; the
strings at the end were live.
Building sequences step-by-step from
(also shown in the Mk
overview video and described in the tutorial)
mp3- Start metronome & record
sequence 1 (4 notes), then press Play to stop & play immediately.
My slight mis-timing during the record cycle is automatically fixed by
mp3- Pitch key pressed to shift all
tracks currently playing.
mp3- Sequence 2 (same 4 notes as 1)
has been recorded in sync & stopped along with metronome; Seq2
& Play keys pressed to start seq 2 on the off-beat of seq 1.
mp3- Pitch key pressed to shift all
tracks currently playing down 3 semitones & back again.
mp3- Seq2 & Pitch keys pressed to
shift sequence 2 up by 3 semitones, then back again. Did you
predict what this will sound like before playing it?
mp3- Pitch all down &
re-introduce metronome as a bass, then repeat.
mp3- Tempo keys pressed to speed up,
then a few pitch changes.
Self-contained MIDI keyboard/sound devices can be used if they have
an option to disable 'local' MIDI control, i.e. the sound generator
section can be controlled by MIDI-in as opposed to the local keyboard.
Examples from users (change-log):
configs, screenshots, MIDI files, icons, docs etc. User demos (video &
Contact me if you want to share anything.
version is free;
if you pass it on please keep the package intact. It handles fewer seqs
& has less command variations than the full version, but is fully
usable with no time limits or nag screens. Ideal for synths with limited
polyphony, such as the microKORG.
GBP £20 (currency
converter), payment via
PayPal to: patipping at gmail dot com (replace 'at' and 'dot' to
make a valid email address); once payment is received, a full Sequetron
registered in your name will be emailed to you. Let me know what name you
would like to use for the registration. This is normally with 24 hours -
sometimes within the hour if I catch the payment notification email. Any
problems, contact me via email address shown at bottom of page.
...or get a full version free by
entering this competition
Why upgrade to
the Full version?
Free upgrades, plus...
More features, e.g...
9 parts per sequence
99 scene files for save/load MIDI
1-99999 bpm tempo range
Logarithmic tempo changes
Multiples Sequetrons can run simultaneously
No. of bars for metronome sequence can be changed
Multi-channel operation on all ports & channels
Channel filtering for MIDI inputs
Customisable program-change/patch names
Separate config files for key maps & colours, e.g. for
Docking & width buttons for template/virtual keyboard
Width button for keymapper
More animation options for virtual keyboard
Window positions restored at start-up
Sequescope can be moved/resized
Room for more drum & bass styles
Save & load drum & bass patterns
Multiple notes/flams & qwerty editing in metronome style
More run-time commands/options, e.g...
Live-play function in all modes for no interruptions to live
Hold functions in all modes for repeated data entry
(use Hold & Live together for split-keyboard operation)
Full set of force-to-scale & force-to-notes functions
Record & step-record variants for auto-incrementing
target seq no.
Record-bar variants for recording pre-defined nos. of bars
Record-raw variants for recording from raw input ports, e.g.
capturing external rhythms
Record/stop command for single-trigger record/loop/stop
Shortcut functions for switching between commands
Force-to-scale & force-to-notes commands
Seln functions for pitch-shifting individual notes within
Record & step-record functions to toggle recorded
Edit sequence lengths with time-shift command
Octave +/- , transpose & pitch-lock/unlock functions
within pitch mode
More variants such as 4, 8, 16, 32, n, nn, r, rr for play,
mute, playmute, pitch, stop/play commands in record mode etc.
More variants such as 8, 16 for nq quantise command
Cyclic modifier for allowing commands to have unequal
play/mute cycles, e.g. 3 play, 1 mute
Sweep modifier for allowing commands to sweep through ranges
dynamically, e.g. ports, parts, channels, progs, tdiv etc.
Adjustable metronome beat length
Runtime control for metronome fill, no. of bars, type
More options for step-time recording
More options for tempo clock division
Full set of hotkey shortcuts, including hold functions
Macros/CC control for automating multiple functions
Wrap-round options for inc/dec attribs such as Channel, Prog,
Option to auto-select next free seq for recording if no seqs
Tempo division & multiply for individual seqs
Function shortcuts for inc/dec fcns in pitch, ftn, fts modes
Run/double-click the program installation file and follow the
Repeat for the documentation installation file, using the same
destination locations as the main program.
(administrator privileges are required)
Windows may prompt for permission to install using various messages...
If you see: Windows protected your PC - Windows SmartScreen
prevented an unrecognised application from starting...
Click 'More Info' to reveal a button marked 'Run anyway' and click
If you see: User Account Control - Do you want to allow the
following program from an unknown publisher to make changes to this
Once installed, Sequetron can be started via Start, Programs etc.
When started, click Settings, Ports to select your MIDI input & output
devices and click Run. You no longer need to touch the PC; your music
keyboard will act as a self-controlled sequencer-like instrument.
You can save this configuration so it will auto-run in future, allowing
completely hands-free operation from power-on; more details in the
There is a troubleshooting guide if you get stuck.
Please contact me if you have any problems.
Use the standard uninstall/remove process in Windows Control Panel.
Administrator privileges are required, so you may need to acknowledge
User Account Control prompts as shown above and/or logon as an
admin user first.
Data files will not be removed, e.g. configs, scenes, midi, logs.
If you are using an internal driver to convert MIDI to sound, the standard
Windows driver (Microsoft GS Wavetable SW Synth) is not
recommended due to its poor response time/latency. One free
alternative is mudlord's BASSMIDI
driver configured with Rich Nagel's WeedsGM3
N.B.1 BASSMIDI v1.06 is reputed to have the fastest response
time, but has only been verified with Sequetron on Windows XP.
v2.02 is not recommended as it crashes Sequetron on WinXP.
The latest version as at May 2012 is v3.0 which has been verified with
Sequetron on WinXP. It seems to have a similar response time to v1.06, so
may be a better choice if you can't get v1.06 working (always unload old
drivers and reboot before installing new ones).
If there are any problems downloading these versions from mudlord's site,
my local copies are here: v1.06v3.0