Waldorf Blofeld Multimode

The most basic setup

I have many plans for live performances, but my current studio rig is too bulky to move around easily and requires a power outlet, neither of which is good for on-the-go performing. So I found a battery with both 12V & 5V DC outputs for the Blofeld and my other USB-powered gear, and then connected a speaker directly to the final synthesizer’s output. The Blofeld does not draw much current, so a small battery like this will power the whole rig for two hours or more. Short of an iPad or laptop, I think this is about as small as you can get and still have something approaching the abilities of a full studio while not limiting in any way where you can create or perform, and all on a rechargeable battery!

everything is powered from that battery on the top left. 16 part Blofeld + 4 voice JX-03 to a single 1/8″ speaker

You might notice one omission here: there is no external sequencer present, just a keyboard controller. Instead, I plan to use Blofeld’s  License SL and its extensive arpeggiator features to bypass the need for a sequencer and sampler.  Shuffle and other parameters of the arpeggiator should enable me to create nearly any pattern, and with clever modulation, the variations for those patterns can be virtually endless. In this blog I’ll share what I’ve learned about multimode, and in a future one, I’ll get into the arp and sampling sections.  A table with the relevant multimode parameters for my configuration is below, and below that are some tips that I hope will help you if you’re just getting started.

Dope Robot 2nd Test Multi

Part # / Ch.Key RangeInstrumentArp TimingNotes
01F#2 - D#3arp bass1/8main Effect 2 settings
02C2-C2kick1/4alt kick arp @ C#2
03D2-D2snare1/2alt snare arp @ D#2
04E2-E2closed hihat1/8map LPF to CC
05F2-F2clap1/2
06D3-F6high keysinternal or external (JX-03)

Multimode Notes

  1. The arp tempo knobs have no effect in multimode, which was sort of weird, because they are available to edit, so the number would be changing, but the sound didn’t. But as the manual says, globaI tempo in multimode “affects all arpeggiators, all LFO and all Effects and overrides the corresponding sound tempo settings.”
  2. Effect 2 is a global effect for the entire multi, and it is always on Part 1, so if you want to use reverb or delay on any sequence, you need to set up Part 1 accordingly. You can even change the Effect 2 parameters of other programs in multimode, but if you don’t save it to the Part 1 slot, it will not be saved when you return.
  3. Effect 1 is available for Parts 1-4, but its parameters are still stored in the
    the second multi

    sound program, including mix level. Parts 5-16 have no Effect 1, so if your sound program depends significantly on Effect 1, place it into Part 1-4. A reminder:

    1. Effect 1: Chorus, Flanger, Phaser, Overdrive, Triple FX (S&H/Overdrive/Chorus)
    2. Effect 2: everything in Effect 1 + Delay, Clocked Delay, Reverb
  4. Multimode is the only area where you can filter incoming or outgoing midi data like program change, control change, etc. There is no global location for these settings.
  5. Be careful that the key ranges you have set up on the Blofeld match the key ranges set up on your controller keyboard.
ultra portable yet complete

Now that I have a proof of concept I can transition to using the extensive modulation options of the Blofeld and QuNexus to design patches that will make a live performance inspiring, engaging and fun. If there are any errors or you have any feedback, feel free to leave a comment. Thanks and good luck!

4 Replies to “Waldorf Blofeld Multimode”

  1. You state: “A mix level (effect send level) can be set for every program and saved in the multi.” I think this might be in error — there is no multimode per-part mix level. However there is a mix 1 and mix 2 in individual patches. Was this what you were referring to?

    1. What is possible to control or not control in Multimode within the use of external controller?
      This is what everybody want to know.
      Can I, programing ad hoc, set a call per part , within the push of a button?
      ::This should be a sysex type of control: the switch between one patch to the other.
      I may assume the screen would not follow the order of the jump; for instance from part 1 to 16 with just one push.
      SO, if not, may be possible to program an external rotary encoder which follows the move of the 16 patches in one program. I may assume as well that the screen would not follow move of the external encoder.
      What people want to know , whatever the screen reacts or not, if it is possible to move at least blank in a controller where all the 16 parts can be , one by one, programed on their parameters.

      1. isn’t doing what you’re asking possible just with program change? audition each patch based on midi channel, then save either from front panel or sysex command right? init patches or pre-programmed sounds would need to be set up beforehand. edit buffers are available for any channel so when editing in multimode everything is possible that is possible in program mode, just per channel. i don’t know if what you’re asking for is possible because the Blo doesn’t send that information from the front panel, and i have seen some people trying to document some multimode sysex commands online, but it doesn’t seem like it’s necessary for what you want?

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