Shifty

Shifty is essentially a combination of four sample and hold stages, a sequential gate and sequencer controller. This collection of functions allow for some specific and useful utility application.

One of the primary uses for Shifty is to take a monophonic sequence source and route each new note of the sequence to up to four different synthesizer voices in a specific pattern. In this way you can create pseudo polyphonic sequences since each voice can be triggered to play and sustain while the next voice int the sequence gets triggered. Another term for this is hocketing.

The other main application of the Shifty is to function as an Analog Shift Register. In this mode each new gate input received causes the current set of pitches to be shifted to new output locations as a new one is added and the oldest one is replaced. This can be an interesting way to create chords that are up to four stacked notes when used with a pitch sequence source that has a harmonious series of notes (e.g. a pentatonic scale works really well). Even just using two of the outputs will yield very interesting melodic interplay and is an excellent way to make a simple sequence much more complex and interesting.

In a more basic way the Shifty could be used as a simple Sample/Track and Hold module or as a sequential gate.

Features:

  • In voice allocate mode (VOICES 2-4) the direction switches are for UP, DOWN, PINGPONG and RANDOM
  • In Shift Register mode (SR) the directions are UP, DOWN, TOGGLE (via reset) and SCATTER.
  • Manual button for sampling/tracking and advancing the sequence
  • Manual reset button and jack
  • Gate input can configured to act as a track or sample control via toggle switch
  • Pitch input can sample or track pitches in the range of 0-10V
  • The pitch outputs are driven by a precision quad DAC.
  • Firmware is updateable by USB so if there are some interesting alternative modes of functionality or special features we will be open to adding them.

Have any questions? Have you come up with some cool patches? Post them here.

1 Like

Hey so I finally picked this unit up. Trying to figure out the pseudo-poly bit via hocketing. So far i’ve only managed to get some kind of chords via the SR mode. Here’s how i’ve set it up:

Keystep Pitch β†’ CV in
Keystep gate β†’ Gate in
CV outs β†’ 1v/oct ins on my oscillators
Osc β†’ VCA ins
Gate outs β†’ envelopes etc β†’ vca cv ins
Vca outs β†’ soundcard

Simple enough, but in voice allocation mode i only get sequential movement of the voices, not any kind of polyphony.

Wish there was more in the manual or videos on this thing! Help!

Voice Allocation mode is meant to be sequential, SR mode fires all 4 gates together so this is the one you want for chords.

Or you could also just mult the keystep gate to fire on every key press then use the sequential gates to trigger other elements of your patch.

Aah okay understood. So when the manual refers to pseudo polyphony in voice allocation mode, it just means that longer envelopes would allow the notes to ring out then?

Any word on when these might be available again?

There is another batch in production, hopefully not too long now

2 Likes

Great to hear. Thanks!