Patches for Live work - Seeking Inspiration

I’ve been scratching my head about how best to use VCV live. Totally fantastic in the studio, working with PC/Screen/Mouse can be tricky in a live setting. But I feel it’s worth persevering because of the benefits to be had.

Just to use it as a keyboard synth seems to be missing a trick, and there are more convenient units out there for not much money. No so much fun, but practical.

Looking at things like Beatstep Pro, and those Arturia performances where someone strides into an Edwardian drawing room set up with three synths and drum machine and sets them all running…I thought about something like that so I put together a single patch with four voices:

  • two PHRASE-SEQ-16’s sequenced voices that I can write to on the fly from the midi keyboard
  • a four voice ‘drum machine’ based off Impromptu’s GATE-SEQ_64
  • one synth voice to play freely with expression off the pitch and mod wheels

I think this is pretty good as a paradigm, and I’m planning to use the same structure on different songs but swapping out the voices to suit. It does need on-screen mouse work to edit the drum patterns live, which could be a problem. I’m thinking of one of those midi ‘grid of pads’ controllers for that.

So, if anyone has been down this road or taken a different approach to live playing I’d be very interested to hear what you’ve done - what works/doesn’t work.

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for drum sequencing it’s better solution now (I guess) is using Iverson and launchpad or TouchOSC for iOS touchosc controller or any another grid controller. 8 tracks - 4 pages - 64 steps, nice visual feedback.


For live perc I have a pool of very sparse & simple looped phrases that I can switch between, each individual perc voice has its own fader and also aux sends to two different delays, the faders, sends and delay controls are all mapped to a Novation ZeRO SL MkII so I never need to touch mouse or keyboard and can go anywhere from really simple grooves to OTT delay insanity seamlessly. Also have clock swing mapped. It’s great fun :slight_smile:


Yes that looks good, thanks. Just tried it looks like the way forward. I had the same clock/reset problems I’ve had before when not using the Impromptu modules, but I know how to fix that now.

For a moment I thought I was going to be able to map to my keyboard to write notes on the fly (as they go past I mean) but it’s not like that.

Like the GATE-SEQ_64, it looks promising for mouse use with the module zoomed to fill the screen. But we’ll see when I try it for real.

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How do you store and switch between them Ewen? That sounds like a good approach too - composing them beforehand then deploying them in the moment. That’s very much in the spirit of things.

Entrian sequencers, though you could use your sequencer of choice & switch using Stoermelder 8-FACE plus ML Trigger Buffer to keep everything in time. The real flexibility comes courtesy of the synced delay sends.


It’s also nice to have some sort of switch after the midi cv input module so it can be routed to different voices, switching them between playing (or programming) their sequencers and playing them live through the keyboard.


Ah yes, that is a good thought. Need to work out an elegant way to that. If so, I guess I could generalise it to have all the melodic voices either played or sequenced

I experimented with putting in switchgear for each voice begin sequenced/free play. It worked and I learnt some new things about multi-way switching, so that’s good I’m sure that’ll come in handy sometime. But looked like a plate of spaghetti and used quite a lot more cpu.

I concluded it was more elegant to have each voice on its own row, each with it’s own midi channel and dedicated to either seq or free play. Then the paradigm is more like component engineering.