Keyboard sequencer and sync box.
When the classic MS-20 analog synthesizer appeared in 1978, it had a trusted partner in the SQ-10 step sequencer. Now, after thirty years, the MS-20 has been reborn as the MS-20 mini, and the SQ-10 has evolved i... read more
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Versatile CV/MIDI sequencing in a small package, huge bargain for the price.
Great sequencing tool, especially for the price. Two independent (though not independently clockable) or chainable CV/gate rows with pitch quantizing, CV range, slide, step jump, fwd/back/pendulum/random play mode, etc. Huge amount of depth to this little guy. The same features in a eurorack sequencer module would cost hundreds. There's some undocumented features regarding gate polarity, etc. Needs a real manual -- the poster sized multi-lingual instruction sheet folded down to the size of a matchbook and printed on tissue paper is garbage. I've noticed it has a tendency to scramble my sequences between power cycles -- after turning it back on, the notes have been shifted up or down randomly if they were in that "in-between" zone (seems like a rounding error kind of thing). I've speculated it's to do with unstable voltage from the USB power, maybe a solid 3.3v regulator on perfboard could help here. Huge amount of sequencing utility for the price, great addition to a modular system or cv/gate keyboard synths.
Cool! Not sure if I'll keep it.
Pretty cool device, and well built. I can see it being really useful with a Eurorack setup. I got it to supplement the lack of a sequencer on my new Korg Prologue 8, and it works decently for that, but there are a number of things that drive me crazy about it: 1) Programming individual notes with knobs and no screen to give you feedback about which note your turning it to make it feel like I am operating it with a blindfold on. 2) Can't save sequences. 3) Defaults to key of C, which just makes it tedious to program things in other keys. Between these three things, I may just return it and try to figure something else out. But again, I can see this being a very useful tool in a modular setup.
Versatile, good features for the price
Solid build quality and many connections. Useful for sequencing 2 synths with CV/Gate (Hertz/Octave and/or Volts/Octave) or a synth and CV parameter. It has major/minor key modes but currently locked to C for both. Tempo syncing has some weird quirks depending on if you're using USB or external clock/gate clicks. A great portable sequencer that's instantly useful or MIDI and CV gear.
not for me
NOT FOR ME I THINK THEY MADE A REALLY BAD JOB ON THIS ONE When the classic MS-20 analog synthesizer appeared in 1978, it had a trusted partner in the SQ-10 step sequencer. Now, after thirty years, the MS-20 has been reborn as the MS-20 mini, and the SQ-10 has evolved int...
Best deal in audio.
Incredible for interactive live sequencing of analog synths via CV or MIDI and drum machines and incredibly cheap. You can do stuff like the always evolving arpeggio in "Silent Shout" by The Knife. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4uI1KXHJVO8
in a word...
FUN! A great little analog sequencer for your CV/Gate analog gear that syncs perfectly to MIDI clock via USB port and provides MIDI out to sync my non-CV/Gate hardware so I can double parts coming off the hardware sequencer. Originally created to go with the DIY MS20 desktop module that flopped, Korg musta made a lot of these because they are basically giving them away now. When I returned my keyboard ARP Odyssey RI to get the module when I heard it was coming out (see my other 2 Odyssey RI reviews) I caught a deal where a few retailers were virtually giving them away as a package with your Odyssey desktop (not a DIY like the MS20 desktop, Korg built it for you) so I went for it. At first I basically ignored this little guy. I tend to PLAY the Odyssey.... but this thing works as a sequencer for any CV synths, so eventually I slapped it into a Moog. I think I've used it with alla my synths now to create some whacked out patterns, sending control voltage to any sections of a synth that have jacks! I really enjoy this little thing. Great for anything from R2D2 noises all the way to vince clark and alan wilder type 'beyond arpegiator' type sequences. Now that I've really gotten going with it I've been enjoying flipping from the forwards-forwards mode over to the far elft up-down, zig-zag mode to fuck with my sequences while wanking filter cutoff or envelope mod around LOL. I started out using this very musically and traditionally but I've rapidly embraced it as a tool for creating burbling, disintegrating mayhem without any additional effects....
You can pretty much guess how this cool little guy is programmed just by looking at the pictures, right? So I will say no more. Very fun, especially if you just set up a pattern randomly and THEN plug it into CV jack on a synth and see what kidna noises it makes.
Are there cooler analog sequencers? You bet, but this does most of what they do and it was free. Its also very easy to program, not unlike an old ARP sequencer with the sliders.... prior to this if I wanted sloppy analog sequencing I had to settle for using my Bassbot to control another synth and the bassbot is a bear to program intelligently just like a real 303. Its also pretty limited compared to this Korg, very linear whereas the Korg will take your music and turn it into something completely new and unexpected if you let it.
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Keyboard sequencer and sync box.
When the classic MS-20 analog synthesizer appeared in 1978, it had a trusted partner in the SQ-10 step sequencer. Now, after thirty years, the MS-20 has been reborn as the MS-20 mini, and the SQ-10 has evolved into the more modern SQ-1.
The SQ-1 is a compact step sequencer with 2 x 8 steps. It's wealth of connection jacks allows it to be connected to the MS-20 and a variety of other synthesizers. Vintage analog synths or the latest compact synths can be controlled from this single unit. You can also switch between a variety of synthesizer modes and use the step buttons to create performances overflowing with spontaneity, just as when using a volca unit.
Connect and control the MS-20 and many other types of equipment
Rather than the commonly used V/Oct standard, the CV design of the MS-20 always used the Hz/V standard that provides excellent pitch stability limiting the step sequencers that are able to correctly control the MS-20. As a descendant of the SQ-10, the SQ-1 supports the Hz/V standard, enabling it to perfectly control the MS-20 or MS-20 mini. It goes without saying the V/Oct standard is also supported, and the voltage level of the CV output (*) and polarity of the GATE output can be specified as appropriate for the device you've connected. This versatility will enable you to control a wide variety of other synthesizers as well.
As a connector, the SQ-1 provides two CV/GATE OUT channels, the standard MIDI OUT and USB MIDI, littleBits out (to connect to the littleBits synth kit by littleBits Electronics Inc.), plus the SYNC IN/OUT channel that allows you to connect to the volca series and monotribe. Compact and complete with all the functions you need, the SQ-1 is the ideal hardware sequencer.
Versatile sequencer modes
The SQ-1 provides two channels (A and B) of 8-step sequencer that can operate consecutively, or be used in a variety of other modes. For example, you can run A and B following each other to function as a 16-step sequencer, ignore the order and make the steps play randomly, or use A and B to control different parameters as they run in parallel. From simple sequences to complex changes, you can choose from a variety of modes to suit your needs.
Step buttons inherited from the volca provide excellent improvisatory possibilities
The 2 x 8 step buttons can be used in the usual way to turn notes on/off, but you can also use the MODE button to switch their function, opening up powerful possibilities such as letting you "perform" the sequence itself, as on a volca unit.
"Active Step" lets you skip steps mid-way through a sequence, and "Step Jump" lets you instantly play just the step that you press, producing irregular rhythms or effects that are reminiscent of short loops. "Slide" produces an effect in which steps are connected smoothly; using this to control a synth bass is an easy way for anyone to generate an acid sound.
Sturdy and compact body, with battery operation
Packed with carefully selected functionality, the SQ-1 features a compact and very sturdy sheet-metal body. Placed beside the MS-20 series, you'll notice a sense of solidity that gives the impression they were manufactured in the same era. The unit can operate on two AA batteries or on USB bus power.
- Connect and control the MS-20 and many other types of equipment
- A variety of sequencer modes
- Step edit buttons inherited from the volca, providing excellent improvisatory possibilities
- Sturdy and compact body, with battery operation