Variator is a tool for processing MIDI Loops in realtime. Variator is based on the environment of the famous sequencer logic by emagic. If you don´t have the program yuo are out of luck. This environment featuers an object called TouchTracks (TM) which can trigger MIDI-Sequences by means of incoming MIDI Note events which may come from a keyboard controller. Usually this leads to a simple repetition of the MIDI Sequence. Now comes the Variator. Variator has several stages of manipulation of these sequences. The above diagram gives some information about the power of Variator. First comes a special note-filter which decreases the density of the MIDI Notes in time. Thus it is possible to create fill-ins withthe move of a fader! The remaining notes are then velocity -processed, which is handy for instruments or sounds that are velocity-sensitive (e.g. FM synthezisers or Samplers that have velocity-switching implemented, such as the E-mu Samplers). The next processing stage is a so -called function generator, where the notes are scaled in a nonlinear manner.You have the choice of major, minor, pentatonic, random or inverted tunings etc. Finally the demo version has a linear transposing fader in the range of six octaves. The demo version features the processing of one sequence at a time. You can either control all processing witth the mouse of your computer , but the use of a fader box is strongly recommended, because the it is possible to change several parameters at once. Of course you can record the processed MIDI File as a new track for further use.
System requirements
emagic logic sequencer V3.0 or higher ( personally I have beeen using Variator live on an old Powerbook 165c with an 68030 processor @ 33 MHz and System 7.6) . It should run on Windows machines as long as the logic version supports the environment (not yet tested)
Features of the full version
The real fun starts with the full version, which has severals additional features and enhancements:
  • 4 different sequences can be processed independently in realtime.
  • The lenght of the sequences, which is normally 4 bars, can be changed in realtime to the follwing values:3/16, 1/4, 5/16, 3/8, 7/16, 1/2, 9/16, 5/8,11/16, 3/4, 13/16, 7/8, 15/16, 4/4, 5/4, and all further quarters up to 4 bars . Because these loop lengths can be changed independently for the four sequences it is possible to create very interesting rhythmic patterns.
  • Additionally to the faders for velocity processing you get optional patterns (requires powerful processor ) which process the velocity of the MIDI note sequences. These patterns can also be changed with regard to their length. Imagine one pattern with the length of 7/4 bars whose notes change their velocity rhythmically every 3/4 bars against a pattern with a length of 5/4 bar with velocity pattens of 8/4 length!!
  • You could use an inverted scale in one sequence and an pentatonic scale in a different one. Chances are that , using a piano sound, this might sound a bit weird. Therefore at the final stage there is an additional scaling processor which transforms all notes to a scale of your choice.
This full version serves as a performance tool in live situations. It is driven by a not so powerful Powerbook 1400 c (by todays standards) and and controlled by a Drehbank (Doepfer) and a VMC 32 (also by Doepfer) .
Download Variator demo version tutorial >>>
MacOS ( 21 kB )
Variator Demo sit ( 22 kB needs Stufft Expander
Variator Demo sit (120 kB ) self-extracting
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