Problem understanding the dub looper

Hi all,

I feel like I am mostly past being a total beginner (making synths, pre record stuff to then play that back in a chain, mostly, so far), but one aspect I still struggle with is live recording/looping.

So I set out today to finally “get” the Dub Looper. I am mainly using Neil Parfitts guide #4. It’s for an outdated version, but I think I can string it together. I set my buffer to a new empty one, I set a trigger to reset it for every measure, I set engage(play) on and punch (record) on (with both set to ‘on’ behaviour). I set start = 0, Dub = 1, Wet = 1, Fade = 0.

I would now expect that when I play anything into the looper, it get recorded, and I will hear that recorded bit, repeated for every reset trigger, since I have dub to 1 and wet to 1. But still, I only hear my source, as if it was set to dry.

The only way I can hear anything of remote interest is if I crank the fade parameter up, and I get some sort of echoing behaviour that fades away. I cant get anything to stay 100% wet in the buffer.

Also, seeing Neil Parfitts old guide, he gets a transport guide, where he can see the recorded waveshape in the buffer. I can’t seem to locate this in the submenu for the looper. Is that gone now, or is it somewhere else? I think that could help me debug my issue.

Really hoping I missed something obvious here.

PS: I tried looking for some sort of newbie question mega thread, so if I missed something like that, please forgive me and point me in the right direction. :slight_smile:

For this, put the cursor over any parameter of the dub looper and press “Enter”, it will show the content of the buffer.

If the dub parameter is set to 1, the looper will replace 100% of the buffer with the incoming signal. With wet to 1 you will only hear the output of the buffer, which in this case is equal to its input.

See: ER-301/Dub Looper - O|D Wiki for a reference of all parameters.


Oh thanks so much! Seeing the buffer being recorded really helped me understand what was going on!

I can see that when there’s silence coming from the input, that silence get punched in. Bit of a duh moment! :stuck_out_tongue: I tried copying the settings from the video, but I guess there’s something about the surrounding setup that I missed.


I haven’t watched it recently - but keep in mind some of those videos are going way back to OS 0.2. The 301 has grown so much since… so some parameter behaviour may have changed.


…too bad @NeilParfitt isn’t making new videos now that he’s mastered the fine art of crafting videos when he’s not busy working at McDonald’s.

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Yep I was aware. This problem just boils down to my own stupidity, being convinced that silence would somehow not overwrite anything. Seeing the buffer waveform just helped me snap out of that conviction. Hope you didn’t feel I was scapegoating your video! They might be on an old OS, but it’s still very helpful to learn from, so thanks a ton!

Wiki should maybe add how to bring up the buffer waveform, or reflect it in the GUI. Such a useful feature!

Btw if you’re interested in clock synced looping check out Sloop as well.

huh, a bit like if silence was a transparent background in a layer, to use a graphic analogy. That might be interesting. I’ll have to try that making the punch in state dependent on the input level.

Oh…I was just reminded that this @Joe Filburn character also makes some wicked great videos too, albeit without loud cats in the background. As a matter of fact, he’s made 35 video contributions to the ER-301 community plus a whole host of videos about the Monome Teletype.

But I wouldn’t want to bother him to ask for a video about the dub looper when he’s KNEE deep in developing stuff for firmware v0.6


Funny you should say that, as my dayjob is a VFX artist for games, and work with photoshop quite a bit. :stuck_out_tongue: But let me know if you figure something like that out. I tried it too, but my results were very choppy.

Yeah! Your unit seems really cool! I have been meaning to get more into the community units. I think once I am done with my current project I’ll do a firmware upgrade, and load up my card with community made custom stuff at the same time.

Thanks for the tip! A lot of great ideas in here (I found this: ER-301/Joe's Tutorials and Patches - O|D Wiki)

hahaha! Hey!!!

I will … I just need some ideas to spark something new. It’ll happen :slight_smile:


I’m having a little trouble with the dub looper also. I’m able to record my initial loop just fine. But when I attempt to record a second “layer,” the volume of the first layer is greatly reduced, and even a little bit altered (there was a wobble of some sort created within the loop that wasn’t there originally). I understand that if dub is set to one, everything is recorded over, and if dub is set to zero, nothing is recorded. I set dub to .500, for what I expected to be an even blend, but what happened was the new layer basically ate away at the original layer, and the sound deteriorated. Am I using this unit incorrectly? In Neil’s video it seemed he was able to record loops with abandon, and there were no issues, so I’m a bit confused.

What are you recording? Pure sine waves?

The first loop was a chord from Plaits chord mode. The second loop was a sine wave, also from plaits. As soon as I attempted to record the sine wave as a second layer over the chord, the volume immediately went down dramatically, and the resulting loop was a very odd/low volume blending of the two. Another seemingly odd thing was if the dub parameter is at .500, and you press “punch,” but don’t actually play anything, my original loop slowly gets eaten away until it’s completely gone. As if when the dub is set at 1, it overwrites the original loop in a single rotation, but if dub is set at .500, it overwrites the original loop slowly over many rotations.

The wobble is due to constructive and destructive interference. It is referred to as beating and is very noticeable in pure tones.

This is also expected. Does this help explain why?

If you don’t want this to happen then use the Feedback Looper:

I had read the wiki previously, but was still confused about the volume and audio quality drop after attempting to layer the two loops. If it is working as intended, that’s fine, I just hadn’t anticipated that. I also had assumed that with dub set at .500, I would be able to press punch, and the original loop would be unchanged, allowing me to layer the second loop as I pleased, and didn’t expect my original loop to slowly disintegrate. I’m used to the looper on the MPC, so I was expecting something similar to that. Now that I know this looper is behaving as intended, I will approach it with that in mind next time. Thank You.

The Dub Looper keeps the final signal from growing by averaging signals (i.e. unity mixing). However, averaging something with silence (i.e. zero) will result in lower volume, hence the decay.

The Feedback Looper is just simple mixing.

Got it. Thanks, Brian. Just got my 301 last week, and I couldn’t be happier. From the wooden box to the module itself, everything is top notch. It’s brilliantly designed, and completely fascinating. Thank you for your hard work, and dedication.

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