The screen-led TS1 offers complex compositional note and trigger sequencing and pattern generation over CV and MIDI for Eurorack.
The TS1 is unashamedly about programming notes, creating patterns and chaining scenes. It’s not trying to be generative or use clever algorithms to get it to play itself, it wants you to program in patterns of notes and beats to run your rack (and more) in a deliberately musical way.
There are 4 channels of note sequencing, 3 monophonic and one polyphonic, with up to 64 steps per pattern and 99 patterns. There are 2 channels of drums, each with 4 tracks with the same number of steps and patterns. At the moment I’m finding it hard to envisage exactly how that works because the physical patch points don’t quite match up to what I’m expecting. However, after a conversation with Bruno at BVR, I came to understand that the 6 channels of total sequencing are only available over MIDI whereas for CV you have the first 2 channels of sequencing via the CV/Gate outputs on the front and the first channel of trigger sequencing giving you the 4 visible trigger outputs. That makes a lot more sense and could be a bit clearer on the website.
TS1 supports up to 198 trigger patterns and 198 note patterns with 98 chord patterns on the polyphonic track. You can stack up patterns in the Song/Scenes mode to run your whole show.
BVR says that the interface is simple, easy to learn and notes are entered with a simple set of parameters. It’s designed to make things as easy as possible and be a bridge between your modular gear and your MIDI gear. I really like the idea of bringing some chords into your Eurorack via a MIDI polysynth or tying in a broader range of sounds. Normally you’d be looking at a desktop sequencer or a much larger module to be doing that.
They could do with a short demo video just showing how easy it is to program. There are a couple of long videos in French with the prototype TS1 from a year ago which are helpful if you turn on the subtitles. But just a quick 3-minute summary would be excellent. All their other videos are jams with the TS1 and lots of gear which are fun but don’t really tell you anything. Hopefully, as the TS1 starts to get out there we’ll be able to see more of its potential.
The TS1 is available now for €389.
- BVR Instruments website.