# Help understanding step sequencers

Hey there super new to this, so I’m using monome grid and white whale module to trigger drums.

So its clocked by Pams pro workout at 95bpm and white whale has 16 steps and I’m trying to grasp what the note divisions are of the 16steps.

Are the 16 steps equal to one bar at 95bpm and thus 16 16th notes ?

Would I then use say a kick every 4th note to “equal” a quarter note pulse and every 2 for an eighth note kind of thing ? Or am I totally wrong ?

Heres’s a link to Monome manual :

https://dewb.github.io/monome-rack/modules/grids/

But why not try an “easier” Gate Seq first ? Like this one f.i. :

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BPM and such is MIDI/DAW way of doing things. Often in modular one clock makes something happen. You could think of it as 1 ppq. But the clock itself really has no conception of whether you think of that clock as a “beat”. or 1/24 of a beat. or whatever…

You have the right idea but the modular way is just a stream of pulses.

You have to tell the clock, and all attached when the start of the phrase of pulses is.

Typically “reset” is used to sync all to the new “downbeat”

You could also use a divided clock into sequencer resets to keep everything proper Etc etc.

Ah so the 16 steps of the white whale in that case don’t equal any division of a beat they just are 16 pulses ? Even if using a clock set to say like 95 BPM or whatever ? That’s kinda hard to wrap my head around with how you integrate this stuff with other things using a standard BPM structure ?

Hm that kinda makes sense but I’m not sure then how id go about integrating this with stuff using a regular BPM or concept of note lengths or notes within a sequence. So basically at an arbitrary clock BPM each pulse when attached to a step sequencer can’t really be thought of as a 16th note or whatever it’s just a pulse ?

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Gotcha so basically I could use something like pams with a x4 modifier for 16th notes which if fed into the white whale with 16 steps would equal 16th notes I think ? Or would it just be “quarter notes” on the white whale at a faster tempo ?

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Yes.

Ah that makes a ton of sense now, so basically I’m setting the step length with the clock pulse I’m feeding it and by using a 95bpm clock at 4x multiplication feeding it 16th notes at 95 BPM to progress the steps so each step is a 16th note and the full 16 steps is one bar of 4/4 at 95bpm ?

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Most everyone uses the (free) Imprompu Clock. It makes this kind of thing super easy.

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Exactly

But I’m the idiot who spent my money on the pams module loolol

That’s fine. But if this other module is free, does exactly what you need, and is easy to use…

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I do have clocked , I’ll have to try that for now…

I think the last part of the puzzle is to figure out if monome grid or white whale has any inherent step length I would assume no and that whatever clock I feed it each pulse will advance it one step and thus feeding it a 4x clock of whatever BPM I want will turn each of the 16th steps of the grid into a 16th note in whatever original BPM I started with basically ?

If I’m grasping that correctly.

Also I really dig a lot of your modules btw !

I think you are correct about the clocks and such. But of course like all modular stuff - try it and see what happens.

A scope helps you actually see what happens.

For sure then I gotta figure out importing the tracks to a DAW without the timing drifting between the DAW and vcv recording

Depending on what exactly you’re trying to accomplish, you could emit a click track from VCV and use it to align things in the DAW. Not suitable for live, work, but an option for an editing workflow.

I’m mostly at this point using it for drums ( though I may use it for more melodic and ambient / noise stuff too but l assume with drones and other noise it’s less crucial) but for the drums you mean record something like the clock out of the main clock I’m using in VCV in addition to the track and use that to match the drum track to the grid lines in the DAW ( just by bumping thr BPM (+/- by the decimal point they differ ?)