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Piano16 - 88 Note Piano Sample Custom Unit

Following on from the discussion about voltages and slices it’s time to reveal what I’ve been up to.

Piano16 is full 88 note piano custom unit capable of producing really nice piano chords and melodies in your ER-301!

If you read the voltage/slice thread then you’ll know it’s taken some time to get this right, but I am super happy to say that if you send it a notes from the ER-101 using the 12TET scale then it all maps accordingly; i.e. A0 (Index 9) corresponds to slice 0 which is the bottom note on the piano i.e. A0, etc…

The trick to getting this to work correctly was to use a mixer and an offset before the gain and offset settings in the Sample Player slice parameter.

Now this principle has been solved, it should be fairly straightforward to create any instrument you like using this one note per splice sample method and know that you can simply use the default 12TET voltage table in the ER-101 to play it.

Of course once you have your sample nicely sliced and ready to go in a Custom Unit like this, it’s trivial to load this up multiple instances, adjust the Unit input parameters and either send chords, or if you use a sequential switch you could easily implement polyphony. Or both!

Why not use the first three channels of your ER-101 to generate up to 6 note chords (freaky fingers!) and the last channel to play a melody over the top! This is a relatively lightweight unit so while I haven’t tested it this far re. CPU usage, I see no reason for this not to work.

I also spent quite a lot of time going through making sure the slices were all accurately placed for maximum responsiveness, envelope time and zero clicking at the end of the sample.

You might also like to try mapping the pitch to the Pan CV in for an unusual ‘sat on the piano stool’ experience!

If you have any questions re. setting this up to work with other sequencers, ask and I’ll try and explain, but it should be a relatively simple case of adjusting the offset and gain parameters for the incoming slice selection cv.

Copy the piano16.lua file to your custom units folder and copy the sample and it’s slice file to your samples directory. It should just work :slight_smile:

I hope this is inspiring! Please share any creations based on this patch - thanks!!

Enjoy :smiley:

59.9Mb download from Dropbox:

  • Sample chain was created by @Joe - thanks Joe!!

Note from odevices:
Ever since the 12TET slice addressing mode was added in to the Sample Player (v0.2.0+), this custom unit is no longer necessary for using the piano sample chain that Joe built. Just insert a Sample Player unit, load and assign the Piano 88 Whole Notes 80 BPM.wav to it, and make sure to set the addressing mode to 12TET. Also make sure the Piano 88 Whole Notes 80 BPM.slc (slice data) is in the same folder as the wav file.


Here’s a litte ditty I threw together on the ER-101, 3 note chords plus a melody line, CPU ticking along quite nicely at 37% :smiley:

It’s a bit sketchy, but whatever hehe oh and a little reverb added!


Thanks a lot for sharing this! :grinning:

My pleasure @gwpt :smiley:

@DivKid just suggested adding some dynamics:

Velocity (whatever that is, attenuated stepped random I like so it’s like a humanize effect) controlling top end and VCA level to fake some more real. Gentle non resonant low pass works best.

He’s not wrong!! I might get around to this in a bit, but it would definitely add a lot to it, I guess you could add your own either random using a White Noise > S&H or actually programming it in using CVB on the ER-101 perhaps!

No I’m not :wink: kidding of course.

A low pass gate works well as you get that 6dB roll off with the level drop. It’s easy to over cook it though but loosing a little top end makes things feel more distant and couple that with level drop on a VCA (all attenuated nothing full range) helps to keep things dynamic and with some expression. Also if you’re really going for a piano thing how about some panning with pitch? Pan the sound slightly to the left and then let the 1v/oct signal you’re using pan things across to the right so it’s like a wide close mic AB pair recording a piano.

As I don’t have a 301 I can’t comment on how to do it (stereo channels with pan etc) but you could use 1v/oct and an inverted 1v/oct signal on two channels with a copied set up. Where one positive pitch signals turns up and otherwise volume attenuated output for one side then turn up the other channel a bit louder and have a negative copy of the 1v/oct signal turn it down. It should fake some basic panning nicely that way.


Absolutely, I did suggest this, but your explanation is better!

It would be cool if others made additions and improvements, I’m done for a little while on this kind of thing, need a little break :slight_smile:

Turned out great! Nice work. :joy_cat: It’s nice to know the ER-301 can do this kind of thing and handle it so gracefully. I guess really the sky’s the limit!

As an aside, I was also pleased to discover this forum software has a second page of emjois with additional smiling cats.

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this is great - going to try it out tomorrow!

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Indeed, loads of potential for all kinds of sampled instruments now :smiley:

I’m itching to get on the Steve Reich piano phase thing with this…it’s what I had in mind when I started building it, now this is done I just need a bit of head space so I can come at it fresh - it’s super easy now, just load up and start sequencing, don’t even have to think about voltages and notes, it’s all just there nice and clear and just works - I’m well happy :slight_smile:

thank you!

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Clever stuff.

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OK, so I spent a little time going through and adding some dynamics and effects to the same sequence as above, I thought about making these available as an update to the unit, but there are so many ways to do this that I think it would detract from the initial idea and be inconvenient for folks who didn’t want the decisions I made here. It’s so easy to add your own :slight_smile:

Here I added some white noise and sample and hold units on vcas for each instance, and filters as suggested by Ben! A cheeky use of a delay, a bit of reverb and compression and it’s all starting to sound rather nice!


Your generosity and savvy are appreciated. Why not make both versions available?

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Heh - cheers!!

I dunno, just seems like it dictates too much how it works, I could do I guess, but later, or tomorrow, going out now to enjoy the impending thunderstorms :smiley:

:thunder_cloud_rain: :thunder_cloud_rain: :thunder_cloud_rain:

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The first version is sort of a template. The second version demonstrates one way to build upon the template. Together, they constitute an immensely valuable learning tool.

How was the show? :slight_smile:

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Thank you Kel for sharing this, very nice to use

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Sure ok, I’ll get round to it :slight_smile:

Thunderstorms were good thanks, seen far more dramatic ones, but still always nice to smell the air and hear the bangs!

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Cool, on all fronts :smile_cat:

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I had a lot of fun with Piano16 and FM last night. I should have recorded…


Hehe, excellent - great to hear!!!

I’ve been doing this too, at one point it sounded like a slide guitar!