Thread: Korg KARMA
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Old 07-25-2010, 07:29 AM
Sjoerd Sjoerd is offline
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: Amsterdam
Posts: 263

Originally Posted by deva View Post
I have no comment about the choice to use Reaper and all that.

On the other hand, you have not even tried Karma. Perhaps you should not be so dismissive about something you have not tried. It is impressive. It is a remarkable arpeggiator +. 2 people can play the same setup and get quite different results because it responds in complex and musically interesting ways to your playing. There is something fluidly interactive about it that I don't yet find with Numerology.
True, I have not tried it yet, but not because I did not want to. I am not dismissive about Karma at all, I'd really love to see it and play with it. I should have also thanked you for bringing it up, as I find it very interesting indeed. So here, thanks.

I am however very pessimistic about the idea to implement such a thing (if I understand what it would do correctly) using Reaper as back end (not dismissive: I am even adding an incentive to try doing so by offering to take a bet ). Not ranting about Reaper per se either -- I praise Reaper and respect its developers a lot -- but for this particular planned combination/integration I foresee nothing but insurmountable problems. I would even more love to see it happen as it would undoubtedly benefit me as a Reaper user. I will love this project if only for that.

Also, the idea of tying/bundling the sale with a plethora of (probably imho more often than not inferior) plugins in itself doesn't bother me much as long as the price is right; but any deeper technical integration indicates that the concept of modularity (which plugins by definition are) is a bit wasted on the designer, although he seems sensitive to people disliking bundling. I'll be glad to try any arpeggiator, but I like to be free to pick my own sounds please. Otherwise, thanks but no thanks.

But more importantly, let's focus on constructive discussion, explaining how to use the arpeggiator abilities in Numerology and exploring how they can be further improved -- I take that as the main point of your original post, and will gladly agree they can be much improved still. Your 'checklist' above makes an excellent starting point for that.

On a more general note, I would advise (new) users not to take module names too literally at face value. For example, don't hesitate to use a MatrixSequencer or ChordSequencer for sequencing drums, even though there's a DrumSequencer staring you in the face. I can definitely see how a new Numerology user would open the only module called "arpeggiator" and then not really look beyond the features it shows. With Numerology however the fun really starts when you hook up modules to other modules. For example, if you would want the octave to alternate, it is easy enough to do so using *other* modules (e.g. use a LFO module with a square waveform to modulate the octave).

So what Jim said about "reorganization of the UI to better reflect what people generally expect" is very much true, but only part of the answer; the other part is that users relax their expectations once they get more comfortable with Numerology and realize that (almost) anything is possible within Numerology, but you 'have to' (I prefer 'are allowed to' :P) make it yourself. And because I find building stuff relatively easy in Numerology (compared to possible alternatives), in my experience making your own ideal setup becomes part of the fun instead of part of the frustration.

On a more abstract level, imho arpeggiators are a particular type of step sequencer as well, or maybe more appropriately, consist of the same types of building blocks. I guess the defining feature of the 'traditional' arpeggiator is the sorting of input notes in real-time, and that is indeed not necessarily present in every traditional step sequencer. However, it comes standard for every one in Numerology. Accordingly, a lot of arpeggiator-type can be build in Numerology already. There are indeed still some little quirks related to sorting of polyphonic realtime input (on a single MIDI channel and port) that do get in the way sometimes, but I have great confidence that those will get sorted out sooner rather than later.
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