changes are coming

A significant change is on the way…the Sequentix Cirklon, what in the electronic music world is essentially Unobtanium. I signed on to the mailing list in July of 2017, and now, on February 1st, 2021, the unit is being shipped. It is not even the same sequencer I signed up for back then, as they have updated it to what they’re calling a Cirklon 2, which adds USB host support and a color touch screen, but is otherwise the same instrument as the first Cirklon. It appears that this means that the MPC2500 may not have a very long future ahead of it. I already bought a new sampler to replace that part of it. The only unknown is if the Cirklon can send some basic sysex or not, as my TB-3 depends on that to load patches on the fly.

I have used an MPC since the very beginning, first the MPC2000XL and since around 2017 the MPC2500. It has four midi outputs, and since I have shrunk my setup,  it has worked great since I use only three synths and an audio interface. Now that the MPC might be displaced, that turns into two devices, but since the Cirklon has 5 separate ins and outs, it works out great. The Sensel Morph has an interface much like the pads on the MPC, and if they work as expected, every single  function of the MPC can be replaced. And with 5 inputs as well, I should be able to record the midi coming from any of my external devices that send information out on 5-pin DIN plugs, like the FR-512, BCR2000, or the outputs from the TB-3.

It will take some time to move everything over to the Cirklon, if in fact it will send basic sysex messages.  (I know it doesn’t support parameter changes via sysex or instrument-level sysex definitions, but maybe I can just record the track data into a regular CK pattern. Fingers crossed.) It does come equipped with what looks like a basic SMF (.mid file) conversion to CK pattern type.  The instruments will have to be assigned, and the songs reassembled, but it appears to be possible. If not, I can always play the tracks into the Cirklon from the sequencer and press record, presumably.

It represents a few things for me. One, it is a change from the platform I’ve always used, the MPC-style, to a new sequencing paradigm. The MPC hardware is getting old and has to be maintained with new parts regularly. The sampling capability is very old and I waited until I found a sampler that was a worthy successor. And, the case for the MPC now perfectly fits the Virus and Cirklon. That’s just a case, a handheld 2U rack, and a backpack with the RYTM, TB-3, and BlackBox, and cables. A very light load with a maximum of power and control with . I won’t even need a taxi anymore. Now ready to blast off into the future.

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