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We’ve looked at a number of ways to connect the computer and a Eurorack modular synth system, using Maschine, Ableton, Reaktor and Silent Way along with some hardware. A more modular approach, however, might involve creating a custom Max4Live device in Ableton, making use of the complex environment inside of Max from Cycling 74.
Max4Live is a marriage of the modular programming flexibility of Max and the music composition sandbox that is Ableton Live. While Ableton includes most of the tools that necessary to compose and produce music, Max4Live extends the included feature set to a nearly infinite degree. While a large collection of devices is included with the Max4Live package (as well as a huge database of user created devices at maxforlive.com) this combination of functions can be used to create custom devices for audio, MIDI or even visual purposes.
We can start with a DC offset tool, perhaps the simplest and most immediately useful tool to build for use with a Eurorack system and DC coupled audio interface. The approach is simple: create a signal add object and use a knob to control the offset. The execution may require a bit of research. As we see in the video, the “+~” object acts as a signal offset, and combined with the very useful “Live.dial” object, can be used as a bipolar DC offset when routed directly to a DC coupled interface like the Expert Sleepers ES-8.
Learning Max and Max4Live takes some time, but the modular concepts we work with in the Eurorack world largely apply in the software environment as well. I would recommend taking apart some simple M4L devices to understand how they operate. And if you need something specific, try to find an existing device that does something similar, and tweak it to your needs!
How are you connecting your computer and Eurorack system? Tell us in the comments!!
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