The Buchla IProgram Card is here!
The iprogram card is the 21st century interface to the classic 20th century Buchla Music Easel, analog synthesizer.
The card, in combination with its iPad app, lets you program all the parameters of the Easel’s sliders and knobs, save them as a performance patch, then recall the patch with the touch of a button.
The iprogram card App stores limitless performance patches. You can create your own “bank” of 24 performances and upload them to the card for instant recall.
The card can be accessed by the Easel in either “remote” mode or “both” mode.
In remote mode, the card takes precedence (all sliders and knobs become inactive) and you can control and change the Easel with all the parameters of the keyboard: portamento, arpeggiator, octaves and preset voltages.
In both mode, with creative programming you can also interact with Easel’s sliders and knobs.
Important features of the iPad App are:
Latching of the virtual keys in arpeggiation mode.
Extra patch points for CV of the Envelope Generator and Timbre Waveforms.
Ability to perform/control the Easel in a “live” performance.
The Easel is first and foremost a performance instrument. As Don Buchla stated in the forward to Allen Strange’s original 1975 Easel manual:
“Our goal was to create an instrument for performance. One with a vocabulary that was varied, accessible, and not presumptive. We weren’t particularly in¬terested in imitating any extant instruments, either functionally or acoustically. We did want the potential for expressive, real-time perform¬er-instrument interaction.”
The iprogram card goes a long way to enhancing and expanding the Easel’s performability. And keep in mind, both Don and Allen always thought of the original program card (where you soldered resistors to mimic slider/knob settings), not as a “preset” but as an “instrument definition” – that is each program card was a different expressive performance instrument.
Typically I do an entire concert set manipulating just one “instrument definition”, the fact that I can now have 24 “instruments” immediately available boggles my mind!
Check out the Buchla Easel Remote Control App its Free!
* Wireless functionality requires an accessible Wifi router or hotspot.
Todd Barton Spacial & Sonic Gestures with iProgram Card
Here’s my little study in Spatial & Sonic Gestures using the Buchla Music Easel/iProgram Card and Skylab with the 227e System Interface.
By programming the 227e with the 206e Preset Manager I was able to create separate patches for separate speakers in a quadraphonic array. Using the Last and Next buttons on the to 206e I can scroll through various speaker configurations.
I created 6 patches and saved them to the iProgram Card. Using the Down and Up buttons the iProgram Card instantly scrolls through these patches. By simultaneously pressing the buttons on both the 206e and iCard I can precisely control speaker placement and swirl speed. Or I can create a wide variety of patch changes and speaker changes.
The recording is from the headphone output of the 227e and thus captures all four speakers. My wish was to be able to do an actual “concrete” style piece in real time. So . . . this is in real time with just an Easel/iCard and a Skylab with a 259e/281e/292e. The effect for the majority of the piece are the Easel’s spring reverb. Near the end I kick in an Eventide Space pedal.
Todd Barton Easel iCard Tips and Tricks
Everything here for the newbie to intermediate Easel iProgram Card and App user. Apologies for the poor audio quality the focus is more on information than sound at this point.
Kris Menace´s recent Album ‘FEATURES’ includes collaborations with Julian Hamilton from ‚The Presets’ (Modular), the fabulous Miss Kittin, Daft Punk Collaborator ‚Romanthony’, House Legend ‚Robert Owens’, German Soulsinger ‚Xavier Naidoo’, Swedish Grammy Nominated ‚Unai’, Justice’s We Are Your Friends singer & Simian frontman ‚Simon Lord’, Get Physical and Royksopp guestvocalist ‚Chelonis R Jones’ and other great guest appearances.