Section D:  DESCRIPTION OF CONTROLLERS (For reference only - more detail included later).

D-1:  KB Controller,  MIDI CH 1 (This is the KB on which you will play your music, except keys B5 and C6);

C -2 - Bb 5 -- regular notes;

B-5 Enables backup recording to a sequencer for module that is selected in INST # 1. For INST. #2 and 3, B-5 is played just before a recording is made, in order to enable the first note of your recording to sound its full duration.  Otherwise, you will just get a short blip for the first note since the timer has not been properly set to accept it.

C-6 Ends recording for module selected in INST #1.  In INST #2 and 3, it clears previously recorded material.

Sustain Pedal (Ctrl #64).  Enables Inst. 2 & 3 record.

D-2:  KB Controller,  MIDI Ch. 2 (This is the keyboard upon which you will enter global controls and turn things on and off);

C1: Selects Instrument 1 for recording, manipulation;

C#1:  Keyboard thru.  Keyboard will sound apart from any instruments. You can test your sounds also by changing the MIDI and the program controls in yellow (all number boxes in yellow can be changed via mouse). You can play this live while the instruments are chugging along with their loops.

D1:  Solo/mute.  Allows keyboard thru material to sound and mutes all others. Also you can manipulate MIDI and program information as in KB thru.

D#1: selects Instrument 2 for recording, manipulation;

E1: Selects Instrument 3 for recording/manipulation.

F1: Enables simultaneous recording of all 12 MIDI loops in Inst. 1 into their respective sequencers.

F#1: Enhanced Play mode on.

G1: Enhanced Play mode off.

G#1: Sequences play silently into loops (mirrors the same control on Sequence Control Page).

A1:  Only relevant in enhanced play mode. When pressed, and then when any sequence key (KB MIDI 2, C4 – C#5) is played, it clears all MIDI loops and sequences playing on that module or instrument. This is only in effect for 1 second, after which it reverts to the former.  And so, if you want to clear the material on any module or instrument, you need to press the second key less than 1 second after the first key (the A1). 

Bb 1:  Plays sequence for inst. 2 silently into the quasi loop, which then improvises on it.

B1: Plays sequence for inst. 3 silently into the quasi loop, which then improvises on it.

C2 - B 2  Starts & stops sequences in Inst. 1

Bb1 – B1: Starts & stops sequences for Inst. 2 & 3

C3 -B 3 --Selects Inst. #1, Modules 1 – 12 for recording or deleting;

C 4- B 4 Plays whatever is looping on Inst. 1, Modules 1 – 12 (with toggle deselected). Starts sequence (with toggle selected);

...If play key is hit hard, random rhythm will activate. To deactivate, hit it softly. This can be defeated via toggle;

C 5 Plays Ins. 2 (with toggle deselected). Starts sequence (with toggle selected);

C# 5 Plays Inst. 3 (with toggle deselected). Starts sequence (with toggle selected);

D 5. Turns play off on all instruments. Whatever was cycling will cease.;

D# 5. Turns play on for all instruments Whatever was cycling previously will resume;

F 5 clears notes from selected module in Inst. #1;

F# 5 clears all modules in Inst. #1;

Note: It only clears material that has already entered the MIDI loop.  If a sequence is playing its initial run, this will not affect it.

G 5 Plays once the sequence previously recorded in any selected instrument or module. This is used to restore a sequence that has been previously been recorded and then cleared.  To restore it, in all instruments you first need to select that instrument, D# 1, or E 1)) and then press G 5.  The sequence will then play once and act as if recorded on that instrument.  For Inst. 1 you need to take one further step.  After selecting the instrument (KB MIDI 2, C 1), you need to select one of the modules 1 - 12 so that it is in record and the red button lights up.

G# 5  clears all modules in all instruments (unlike F# 5 which only clears those in Inst. 1).

Note: It only clears material that has already entered the MIDI loop.  If a sequence is playing its initial run, this will not affect it.

A 5  Plays simultaneously all sequences that have been previously recorded, saved,  and then called up.  With G5, you first need to select that instrument or module. With A 5, no preselection is necessary (except that, of course, a set of sequences must be first loaded into the sequencers). Additionally, in order to make this work (and to utilize the powerful transposition, tempo, and delay features of the Sequencer Control Page dumped into the MIDI loops), I have arranged for this note, A5 on KB MIDI 2, to trigger the play preset # 71 on the Sequencer Controls Page.  Before this can work, you need to set up this preset to place all sequences in play mode by selecting the small squares above each sequence play toggle.  Then when you press A5, all sequences will simultaneously play.  See below for setting presets. 

Bb 5 -In Instrument #1, it enables the sequencer for the selected module to accept a dump of notes from the MIDI loop that is currently playing on that module. To begin recording, play B 5.

B 5 In Instrument #1, it initiates recording of the currently selected and playing MIDI loop into that module’s sequencer.

C 6 In Instrument #1, it stops record of the currently selected and playing MIDI loop into that module’s sequencer.

Sustain pedal:  Turns all sequences off and clears all MIDI loops (unlike G#5, which clears all MIDI loops and quasi loops but leaves sequences that are playing intact).

F1, Bb5, B5, and C6 all deal with the functions of recording MIDI loops into sequencers.

NOTE: (1) In the Instrument Controls window,  look at the number boxes in the upper-middle left area. If there is a continuous controller or a keyboard note specified above a number box, then the values must be entered via the specified keyboard note or continuous controller number. In these cases, entering the value in said number box via the Macintosh mouse may not actually change the sound.  Rather, in these cases, all possible values must be entered via the specified continuous controller or keyboard controller.  However, when there is no specified continuous or keyboard controller, such as in the MIDI channels or the sound program numbers in all 3 instruments, then the values must be entered via the mouse. These are then best stored and changed via the  Sounds Preset.

One exception:  In the “loop length in seconds” number boxes, you have the option of either using the mouse or the mac keyboard to set loop length (see below).  When the toggle is engaged, you can use the mouse.  This means you can set very long loop lengths.  With the toggle de-selected, you can use the mac keyboard to change loop lengths on the fly during live performance. 

(2)  A continuous controller (such as those for modulation wheel or breath controller) will modify material on whatever MIDI channel is selected for that module in all instruments, irrespective of whether or not that module or instrument happens to be the one selected for recording.  And so, for example, if you have MIDI 1 selected for, say, Inst.1 module 3, and also Inst. 2, then the breath controller for either instrument will affect the sound of either instrument.  Thus, it is probably better to not duplicate MIDI channels among the 12 modules of Inst.# 1 and the modules of Inst.& 2 and 3.  That is, they might better be set on all different MIDI channels to avoid controls of one module affecting those of another with the same MIDI channel.  If you do wish to have several modules/instruments on the same MIDI channel, just be aware that when one controller changes on that MIDI channel, all the same controllers on that channel in other modules/instruments change along with it.

D-3:  CONTINUOUS CONTROLLERS (These are generic MIDI controller designations.  See above for Slidemate equivalents).

M1, 3, 5, 7 INST #1: Mod. 1-4. randomness of pitch up to 1 8ve up and down;

M2, 4, 6, 8 INST # 1: Mod. 1-4. Random pitch range in semitones;

M9-11: INST #2 modifications (density,tempo,duration);

M13-15: INST. # 3 modifications (density,tempo, duration);

M17-24: Modulation wheel.

M25 - INST #2 Velocity;

M26 - INST #2 Velocity randomness (up = totally random);

M27 -INST # 3 Velocity;

M28 - INST #3 Velocity randomness;

M29: KB Thru Mod Wheel (for live performance)

M30: KB Thru Breath Control (for live performance)

M33-36:  INST #1  Mod 9 – 12. Modulation wheel

M37, 39:  Mod. 9 & 10: randomness of pitch up to 1 8ve up and down;

M38, 40: Mod. 9 & 10: Random pitch range in semitones;

M41-48: INST.#1, Mod. 1 – 8: breath control.

M57--63: INST #1 Mod 1 - 7, velocity;

M65-69: INST #! Modules 8 - 12 velocity;

M70 (Cont. 70). ASR-10 sampler  Patch select (not implemented):

M71-72: Random pitch mod. 11;

M73-76 INST #1-breath controller;

M 77, 79: INST #2 & 3, MW;

M 78, 80: INST # 2 &3, Breath Controller;

M89,91,93,95: INST #1, Mod. 5-8: randomness of pitch up to 1 8ve up and down;

M90,92,94,96: INST #1, Mod. 5-8: Random pitch range in semitones;

M97;  Controls all BC on all instruments. 

M104:  Inst. 1 combined density on all modules.

M105-112:  Inst. 1 Individual Density, Modules 1 - 8.

M113-116:  Inst. 1 Individual Density, Modules 9 - 12.

If you have a Slidemate controller, here are the Slidemate names and their corresponding MIDI controller numbers (for those who wish to revise the numbers on the INSTRUMENTS CONTROL PAGE to match your own setup). I also have other versions with the straight MIDI numbers (so, instead of A 4, it would be M 4, and instead of AD 1, it would be M 65), and can provide custom program number designations for any continuous controller.

Slidemate A 1 - 8: MIDI 1-8;

Slidemate B1-8: MIDI 9-16;

Slidemate AB 1-8: MIDI 17-24;

Slidemate C 1-8: MIDI 25-32;

Slidemate AC 1-8: MIDI 33-40;

Slidemate BC 1-8: MIDI 41-48;

Slidemate ABC 1-8: MIDI 49-56;

Slidemate D 1-8: MIDI 57-64;

Slidemate AD 1-8: MIDI 65-72;

Slidemate BD 1-8: MIDI 73-80;

Slidemate ABD 1-8: MIDI 81-88;

Slidemate CD 1-8: MIDI 89-96;

Slidemate ACD 1-8: MIDI 97-104;

Slidemate BCD 1-8: MIDI 105-112;

Slidemate ABCD 1-8: MIDI 113-120;



“v,””b,””m,”or “n” --In Inst. #1, enables mac keyboard numbers to set loop lengths. Must be pressed before any number is entered.  Here is how to do it (have a loop already recorded to hear the effect produced).

1.Module must be first selected (MIDI KB 2 C3 – B3)

2.Click on any neutral area to deselect any stray number box v,b,m,or n.

4.Press any number from 1 – 9 and it will appear in the selected loop length box as follows:

“v” –After pressing “v”, pressing a number will see that number as the loop length.

“b” --After pressing “b”, then pressing a number, this doubles the loop length the number will designate.

“n” -- After pressing “n,” then pressing a number, this multiplies 3x  the number you will select for loop length.

“m” --  After pressing “m”, then pressing a number, this multiplies 4x the number you will select for loop  length.

Numbers 1 – 9:   These enter the loop  length values for the selected module in INST. #1. See above

“a” --when pressed, and a number pressed, activates changing all loop lengths at once in Inst. 1 to that number..

“s” -- when pressed, reverses the above, reverting to single module length control.

REMEMBER TO DESELECT THE TOGGLE “LENGTH VIA MOUSE ON/OFF in order to get any of these Mac controls of loop length to work.  Also remember to click the mouse in a neutral area so that no stray number box is selected. 


“q” reverts all modules to original transposition

“w” signifies upward direction for transposition

“e” signifies downward direction for transposition

Shift plus (numbers 1 - 9) signifies transposition interval.

Shift plus 0 signifies the interval of a tenth

Shift plus - signifies the interval of an 11th

Shift plus = signifies the interval of an octave

ENTERING VALUES: Values  are entered via the two MIDI keyboards, one set for MIDI output of channel 1, and the other for MIDI channel 2. and a continuous controller with 120 separate controls (MIDI Ch. 1, cont # 1-120).  Most of these can also be entered via the mouse or MIDI keyboard.  A few values are also entered via the Mac keyboard.  Beside each value box can be seen the number of its note or controller. How can you tell which is which in the MAX INSTRUMENT CONTROLS window (the main screen)?  Here's how;

KB Controller MIDI 2 values are note values (but these do not play traditional notes -- KB controller MIDI 1 does that. These are all seen in the main INSTRUMENT CONTROLS page, such as those above the “Record/Select status” or the “Play status.” They are color coded in orange. The continuous controller values are color coded in blue..  Since colors vary somewhat between computers, on the main Instruments Control Page, if you scroll a bit to the left, you will see the color code for your machine in a square box (see above about moving the MAX preferences file).

Composers Playpen Manual: Controllers