[chuck-users] controlling individual chuck patches

Kassen signal.automatique at gmail.com
Fri Apr 8 04:02:34 EDT 2011


> could anyone offer advice on controlling individual chuck patches with an
> external device?  currently my mode of operation is to add several shreds
> and control their parameters with maudi sliders (buf.rate, reverb, delay,
> gain), but i'd prefer to use an external controller.
> i have an 8 channel alesis mixer with usb-- could this help to answer my
> question?  please let me know if you have any controllers in mind, and also
> which section of the manual is best to read for making these connections.
Yes! And it's loads of fun.

These days are good ones for tinkering musicians; lots of interesting MIDI
controllers are getting released and music games (which have nice
controllers) have apparently gotten over their prime popularity-wise leaving
many controllers to the bargains bin.

Go to your local second hand store or games shop bargain section. Find a
interesting looking controller with a USB plug, if you find something
especially exciting with a Playstation plug (or similar) find it a converter
to USB. Essentially all game controllers with USB plugs will conform to the
"HID" (Human Interface Device) standards, these should work everywhere
without a need for extra drivers. You can get a MIDI one too, but those are
most often more expensive and also less exciting (at least to me), they may
come with nice leds that can blink though.

Plug it into your computer (on Windows you may now need to hit "ok" and
"continue" a few times).

Open the folder in the /examples/ dir that deals with hid. These are quite
clear. Use those to figure out what kind of data you can get out of it. If
you found a MIDI controller instead use the MIDI folder, of course.

Write a file containing UGen definitions at the top, then a Shred that deals
with the controller, then use the main shred to deal with generating sounds
(for example keeping track of a sequence). Use extra shreds if you found
multiple controllers. You can mix MIDI and HID ones if you like, one per
shred. If needed borrow code from the HID example for the one shred, and
code from examples that generate sound for the other. A good "mapping"
between the controller and the sound will likely be more important than a
complex sound, if in doubt; keep it simple. If in doubt; try to not use
feedback on the computer screen.

Tweak this until it sounds good and seems expressive.


Presto; within two days and 20 bucks you have a completely new instrument.

Optional; look for other musicians and test your new instrument by jamming
with them.
Optional; play gigs using this as soon as possible and make notes of what
works well and what doesn't.
Optional; get addicted to finding cheap and unusual controllers, fill a
cupboard with those.

Good luck!
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.cs.princeton.edu/pipermail/chuck-users/attachments/20110408/6b8c49a5/attachment-0001.html>

More information about the chuck-users mailing list