What if you could record & multi-track directly on your
keyboard while you are playing it, without
ever 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
It has sequencer-like
but is radically different to other programs as it is completely
using series of music notes called command
sequences. There is no difference
between commands and music
- they are all sequences, hence the name... it can even control itself.
This fresh approach
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 is used for configuration & maintenance; it provides
status info and
customary flashing lights during normal operation... but is not
LE version running 4 sequences/tracks
Full version running 7
(of 16) sequences/tracks
The input can be any simple MIDI keyboard or device, and the output can
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
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.
Sequetron can also generate and record hotkeys
control over Windows or any application which uses keyboard shortcuts,
e.g. for stepping through a slide/video show in time with your music.
Includes free Sample Aid
tool for sampling & auditioning MIDI instruments.
The 'customary flashing lights'
Configuration files for these are available in the downloads
Or use the sequescope as inspiration...
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 device.
A similar system
is available to remote programs or devices supporting the keyboard
link (KLink) sysex protocol, e.g. the RTastra MIDI controller
shown below. The KLink spec & program are available from RTastra
Play links below for MP3
A promising backing track
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
This is all running 'hands-free'; a couple of sequences are
automatically switching between 2 pitch offsets.
mute, cyclic pitch & time-shift
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.
step-by-step from scratch
(also shown in the Mk
and described in the tutorial)
- Start metronome & record sequence 1 (4 notes), then press
to stop & play immediately. My slight mis-timing during the
cycle is automatically fixed by the quantiser.
- Pitch key pressed to shift all tracks currently playing.
- Sequence 2 (same 4 notes as 1) has been recorded in sync &
along with metronome; Seq2 & Play keys pressed to start seq 2
the off-beat of seq 1.
- Pitch key pressed to shift all tracks currently playing down 3
semitones & back again.
- Seq2 & Pitch keys pressed to shift sequence 2 up
semitones, then back again. Did you predict what this will sound like
- Pitch all down & re-introduce metronome as a bass, then
- Tempo keys pressed to speed up, then a few pitch changes.
- A few more tweaks; something developing?
- Play 1 Play 2
- Manual play (I use the term loosely) on the same keyboard...a melody
- A similar sequence using a different synth patch.
- Dynamic key mapping - added 11-Nov-2012
Minimum system requirements
Windows XP and later.
Tested ok on PC with XP,
Vista, Windows 7, Windows 7 64-bit
and on Mac via Boot Camp with Win XP
MIDI hardware or software equivalent:-
- Input device, such as a keyboard
(can also be test-driven using the built-in virtual keyboard).
- Output device, such as a synth.
- Self-contained MIDI keyboard/sound devices can be used if
option to disable 'local' MIDI control, i.e. the sound generator
section can be controlled by MIDI-in as opposed to the local keyboard.
(required for both LE & full versions)
Older versions: Sequetron
for recent program changes
(old history before
from users: configs,
screenshots, MIDI files, icons etc.
Contact me if you want to share anything - updated 26-Apr-2013
The LE 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.
is GBP £10
via PayPal to: philpub1-sequetron at yahoo dot co dot uk (replace
'at' and 'dot' to make a valid email address)
...or get a free copy
entering this competition
to the Full version?
Free upgrades, plus...
More features, e.g...
- 16 sequences/tracks
- 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 colours
- Customisable program-change/patch names
- Separate config files for key maps & colours, e.g.
- Docking & width buttons for template/virtual
- 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
More run-time commands/options, e.g...
- Live-play function in all modes for no interruptions
- 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
- 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,
- Record/stop command for single-trigger record/loop/stop
- Shortcut functions for switching between commands
- Force-to-scale & force-to-notes commands
- Record & step-record functions to toggle recorded
- Edit sequence lengths with time-shift command
- Octave +/- , transpose & pitch-lock/unlock
- More variants such as 4, 8, 16, 32, n, nn, r, rr for
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
e.g. 3 play, 1 mute
- Sweep modifier for allowing commands to sweep through
dynamically, e.g. ports, parts, channels, progs 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
- Run/double-click the program installation file and follow
- Repeat for the documentation installation file, using the
destination locations as the main program.
(administrator privileges are required)
Once installed, Sequetron can be started via Start, Programs etc.
When started, click Settings, Ports to select your MIDI input &
devices and click Run. You no longer need to touch the PC; your
music keyboard will act as a self-controlled sequencer-like
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
Administrator privileges are required.
Data files will not be removed, e.g. configs, scenes, midi, logs.
MIDI drivers & internal synths
If you are using an internal driver to convert MIDI to sound,
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
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).
are any problems downloading these versions from mudlord's site, my
local copies are here: v1.06
If you install
you must also install a sound font, such as WeedsGM3
otherwise the driver will not make any sounds! Once you've
installed BASSMIDI, download & run WeedsGM3 to unpack it into a
folder of your choice (don't use a system folder to avoid permission
problems), then find the BassMidi configuration option in the Start,
Programs menu and add/apply the sound font.
© Phil Tipping, 2013