WavBuddy, MidiBuddy...

There are lots of posts asking about full midi transition etc. and Wav player enhancement for backing. I think a product niche not addressed is a standalone single instrument WAV player that is tightly integrated with a non-computer sequencer (BB). Some failings of loopers are that songs and patterns are not integrated with the sequencer playlists so more computer work and less play time, also more than one loop playing from a single audio out make mixing difficult. Full sequencers like Ableton with an APC are infinitely flexible but are designed for artists with at least one free hand. Drum boxes with Midi only like the SR18 etc. don’t have great sounding bass lines or wav support and the big negative to live use of most multiple instrument playback devices is also a single out to the mixer. Multiple vendor song management and live control is currently like having a band conductor trying to not only let band members know when to start/stop/slow down/get louder but also trying to run around and turn all their music pages to keep them playing the right parts of the song or having some players that only can play one or two patterns over and over and who wait to each be tapped on the head to know when make the changes.

So… dear Santa, Once the paint is dry on BBv1 please consider making a standalone single channel wav loop player that uses the BBM to load/manage patterns, wav samples etc. with an enhancement to BB that supports midi transitions so that BBM is the single source of playlist management. A separate WAV pedal is needed for dedicated output to the mixer with only a master vol and mute foot switch, could even be a volume pedal layout to make it able to be muted and tweaked live.

A MidiBuddy could be a similar minimalist pedal, that would be controlled by the BB as the master sequencer, song tempo, stop, pattern select etc. The midi buddy would also differ from BB in that it would output notes and other midi to sound modules and it would be a sound bank for one instrument at a time setup per BBM with dedicated audio out.

A tempo up/down by one BPM per push option via midi expansion or as a BB setting option in the pedal configuration would also be a nice feature for a live running song to avoid tap tempo trainwreck adjustments also.

There are plenty of loopers and plenty of and computer software for making beats. I’d not want to see BB expanded to attempt to concurrently play WAVs or other midi channels because it would limit CPU/RAM options for songs and also would be limited by its’ physical controls to try to control a more full band lineup.

I’ve read your post several times, yet I fail to get what your feedback is about, I’m sorry :frowning:

So, is it that you feel that your disagree with a lot of what is being suggested for BeatBuddy?
Or is it that you think should be done in a completely different way?

I understand what you’re asking for. You are asking for another pedal, or pedals, whose job it is to play other instruments, for example, a WaveBuddy could play loops of bass parts, or individual bass notes in a sequence, and the transitions ETC. would be controlled by the BeatBuddy.
I bet that a clever person could use another BB and create custom “kits” with bass notes in them instead of drum sounds, and create midi sequences to play these notes for each song.

the trouble now is that the BB doesn’t send out messages to trigger transitions from one song part to another.

But, pretty cool idea!


My main problem is that Boomerang III is likely never accept these messages even if BeatBuddy would send them :confused: I hope they’ll make a firmware update as well.

Sorry if it looked like a rant. I love the song structure of BB vs. drum machines but it is lacking in backing track support options. Loopers suck at backing tracks for many reasons and regular sequencers are no better than an MP3 player with karieoki tracks playing for flexibility. Another quirk of mixing midi and wavs that once wavs are used they have to pretty much run at at least that tempo and can’t be slowed down without time stretching artifacts. Speeding up isn’t so bad on them. So the dedicated wav player would be loaded via BBM with loops that are all set to run at whatever tempo they are quantized to and the BB would need to detect clock from it in those situations.

The BB would be the band leader in terms of telling other instruments when to switch parts etc. Each instrument (multiple wav/midi buds would have minimal independent controls other than to adjust volume via a floor option. If you wanted to use Midi bass and midi synth to sync, separate box for each so that the outs could mix separately at the PA and each could be dropped out while playing for breakdowns etc.

Picture a solo guitar act, wanting a bass player that could play random fills and transitions that BB would control with the option of adding a keyboard part (midi to synth or via sound module in a midi box). Keeping it dead simple to construct a song in BBM that would control all parts so no Jim Morrison in the band (A PC that shows up to the gig and can’t finish the set without crashing). There is no product on the market to really provide a flexible, plug and play solo guitar act backing band and no one wants to see a drum machine/guitar or looper all night. BB is a great start.

No, that was okay, no need to ever apologize for that! I’m probably just picking things slowly :slight_smile:

To be honest, I am not quite sure I am getting this your post well, but considering what RustyP have said, I’m guessing you are probably thinking to have something like a whole pedal board consisting of different BeatBuddies where each of them is responsible for their own unique part, like one for drums, one for bass, one for synth sounds etc. You also wish all of them to be tightly connected to form a single powerful studio-like solution.

Well, first of all, currently there are blocking issues that need to be fixed ASAP, like releasing a working Mac version.

Second, this suggestion is pretty cool (as it will definitely help Singular Sound get more money :)), but are you sure you are not already able to make something similar to what you want with the use of different pedals that are currently in the market? MIDI sync to/from BeatBuddy is a pretty powerful way to integrate/use it with other MIDI-enabled devices, like that very loopers you’re describing as inconvenient.

Third, why do you feel loopers aren’t that great to use as a backing track? What specific features do you seek from a hypothetical future BeatBuddy-series pedal the most?

Yes, Daefecator you and RustyP have the idea, a foot controllable extensible family of backing BB boxes. Sorry for the length of this reply. :geek:

I get that BB is busy being the best at what it is currently designed for. I posted the suggestions here instead of another vendors place because BB team seems to have got it right with the BB/BBMM basic designs. Since the team seems open to topics regarding enhancing midi to/from it, aside from enabling midi for additional midi foot switch options, in my opinion it needs to be viewed in that new role more comprehensively with an eye on what the competition can’t or isn’t providing.

If/when BB pattern change midi is enabled it could open up any midi controlled device to be able to get track information to do pattern changes, but there is the problem. There are Akai MPCs, Ableton, MainStage, various Tablet apps that can probably be adapted to understand BB pattern codes but, how well they will integrate with the BB song structure is questionable and it is against the BB niche model of a floor pedal solution geared toward live use vs. studio or practice sessions.

One solution I tested was set up Ableton. I built a custom midi foot controller and tried using it for drums, bass and keyboard backing. The rig ended up with way too many switches that have to be continually tapped on to to control the patterns playing. It’s hard to make audience contact when looking like you’re stomping on fires all night and it’s just not fun, it’s work. In comparison, to control Ableton live Akai makes the APC matrix controllers for DJs that have free hands.

Ableton is a good complementary product to use to create beats, loops etc. needed for a Buddy band where you can jump from loop to loop and setup sequences to test out before downloaded to BB. That was the comment I’d made regarding enhancing BBM to do something similar. There is also really no need to make BB or BBM concerned with much pattern editing. Once people go beyond the presets and downloadable patterns (tons of it available) they will find that they need a fully featured editor.

I kinda pissed on loopers because when watching someone live, once they do the watch me record and play over it routine a few times it is no longer a wow event. When playing 80 plus songs the majority, if not all, backing loops need to be pre-recorded and available to play the song and part that is currently playing like a band member you practiced with would. This gets into separate song managers and loop sections that will never be seamless and is a major drawback to using loopers with the BB or other drum/sequencers. Then there is the issue with who is the timekeeper. Wav loops have to be so BB and other connected midi devices will need to follow their tempo.

Looper layering and lack of volume control is another big problem live. Some loopers have knobs for volume on each loop but that is on the floor and not independent at the PA/mixer. Loopers are also instrument specific. Generally the looper out is to a guitar amp not PA. Floor space is another drawback. Most small gigs don’t have 6ft of stomp box space and loopers are not designed to be operated remotely via Midi so try to have all controls of it’s own loops on the pedal foot switch and they’re not designed to control other band members.

On the midi side, moving additional midi members to dedicated units would allow different volume outs and allow for separate internal sound modules and can be used to send all notes out its’ midi port to play keyboards etc. vs. taking resources from BB to do it and limiting its’ song storage etc.

So to sum it up, the additional revenue units :slight_smile: would be designed for a seamless live performance that allowed a solo artist to orchestrate on the fly with minimal foot switch tap-dancing. Band practice (setting up the songs) would be done in BBM. Band members learning the songs would be done in a DAW or via purchased content. Packaged BB songs would be another product to sell or promote on the forum.

The experience would differ from a drum box gig where the artist could have access to much more dynamic backing and it would differ from pre-recorded backing sequences by allowing unlimited variations in how songs were played. The system would allow a solo act to bridge between traditional rock/blues/country material and EDM type live use that just can’t be done with what is out there now without looking like a computer geek holding a guitar and wouldn’t take 1 year on a computer to put a backing set together with.

With wav it could play quitar too…

Good point Pineears, a BB aware wav player could totally replace other vendor loopers for use with any instrument played thru it and be used as a loop recorder for live or to later upload to BBM. Biggest benefit would be single place to manage all the loops in BBM and could be as simple as a two button user interface. When song stopped Erase,Store, When song started - Record, Mute/Unmute all synced to the BB song in use with BB controlling the song, not the looper selection pedals. The idea probably needs other exploration but that’s it in a nutshell with both midi and wav oriented complementary products.

Your overall line of thinking matches mine pretty closely, so it will definitely need to be discussed when most hot topics in software and firmware for the current generation of BeatBuddy will get covered.

Cool, I’m looking forward to more great things from Singular Sound.

That’s cool, though we’d better have one super polished unit than a handful of… less polished ones :slight_smile:

:(Waaaaaaaaaaaaaa ! I want a WAVBUDDY!!!:frowning:

This will be the next step, I promise. Going straight to an MP3-Buddy :slight_smile:

:(Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! NOW I WANT A MP3-BUDDY TOO!!!:frowning: (Good thing I’m booking lots of gigs with my BB!!! I’m gonna need the $$$ for all these BB products! LOL

I think a firmware update will cost much much less (if anything at all) than a brand new BB product :slight_smile:

Actually there are a few products out there that will sequence midi files and have built-in awesome sound generators (Roland SD-50, for example) or play audio files. My Roland GR-55 guitar synth has foot-pedal transport control over audio file playback from a USB memory card. I think the current version of the Beatbuddy fills a certain niche of grab and go convenience in a small footprint, as well as a relatively easy way to program songs with pretty high fidelity drum sounds. More complex songs start to push the envelope of its capabilities and certainly trying to force it to do things like add midi bass pushes its design parameters even further. BUT… Yes, an MP3-Buddy would be awesome!