November 25, 2011

Meet Phaedra...

by Chris Randall

In my ludicrously ample free time, I've been working on this bad boy, Phaedra. It is an "analog" style four-channel MIDI sequencer for the iPad. Click the picture for the full-rez screenshot. In the interests of full disclosure, I borrowed heavily from the Moon Modular 568 Quad Sequential Trigger Source, which you can read all about up in here.

I still have a long way to go, but it is coming along nicely. Each step has note, velocity, gate time, and a pair of MIDI CCs of your choosing. I haven't yet coded in the chaining feature, but it'll be able to do 4 x 32, 2 x 64, and 1 x 128 modes. The steps can be 32nd note, 16th note, 8th trips, and 8th note, and each "bus" can run in arbitrary lengths. The "Live Control" knobs on the left can be used to modify one of the four destinations.

I haven't yet conquered "MIDI background mode," as used by many iPad synth apps, but I hope to include it, as well as Korg's WIST. It already does normal hardware MIDI and Network MIDI fine, though, and can clock, or be clocked from, an external source.

I have no idea when I'll have this done, as I'm only working on it in spare moments, but I hope to be done before Christmas. I'll keep you posted. Note this is not an Audio Damage product. (I know that even though I say that, and it clearly does _not_ say "Audio Damage" anywhere on the UI, all the other blogs that pick this up will say it is. You can lead a horse to water...)

EDIT: I made a simple video showing Phaedra driving my modular and a DSI TETR4, while clocking an Eventide TimeFactor.



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Nov.26.2011 @ 2:57 PM
Hollywood Sims
Will it work with Animoog?

Nov.28.2011 @ 12:31 AM
Wade Alin
I dated a girl named Phaedra, just for the record.

Nov.28.2011 @ 2:15 AM
I'm confused

link []

Anyway... your seq looks good. Will give it a twirl or two as soon as it's released.

Nov.28.2011 @ 8:43 AM
Chris Randall
Argh. I searched for literally hours trying to make sure there wasn't another Phaedra.

That said, if Infection Music's track record for actually releasing products is anything to go by, there's no danger whatsoever of there actually being another one. In 15 years they've managed to actually build... what... 10 Zeits? If that?

@Hollywood Sims: It'll work with any iPad app that has virtual inputs.


Nov.28.2011 @ 12:52 PM
Bummer on the name .
Looks like you have made some big strides since your OP though !

Nov.28.2011 @ 12:58 PM
BTW Any thoughts on it's limits ? Intentional ? If not using presets like scenes and having a scene trigger mode would move this up from got to have it o can't live without it !

Nov.28.2011 @ 1:14 PM
Chris Randall
No bummer. Anyone with a history of interest in analog synthesis will know that Infection is all bark, no bite. There will _never_ be a hardware Phaedra from them. Of that we can all be certain. They haven't updated their website in almost 2 years, when they notified that they were finally giving up on Zeit.


Nov.29.2011 @ 7:32 AM
Jason Duerr
Any plans to bring this type of software to sub-ipad markets? So many tablets on the market for under $200.
THX, Jason

Nov.29.2011 @ 9:08 AM
Chris Randall
Not even remotely likely. First of all, Android's audio/MIDI implementation is a complete joke compared to CoreAudio/CoreMidi. (iOS devices have more or less the same CoreAudio/CoreMidi as real Macs, which makes doing these sorts of things fairly easy.) Also, the fragmentation of the OS means that I'd have to spend a long time in Book Learnin' mode to figure out wtf I had to do to get a common denominator scenario going.

Also, this is written entirely in Obj-C with ARC. Porting something like that to Java or whatever would be... uh... a nightmare. To put it mildly.

And lastly, it is a proven fact that people that own Android tablets don't spend fuck all on apps. So doing this would just be Something To Do. And I'd have to probably pay to do it, since I'd have to buy several of these cheap-ass tablets to pull it off.

So, no. ;-)

If it does well in iOS, though, I will _strongly_ entertain the idea of porting it to normal OS X and putting it in the Mac App Store. That would be fairly simple, all things being equal.


Nov.29.2011 @ 12:56 PM

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