Roland x0x Programming - Pattern Writing

concepts - about patterns - pattern writing - about tracks - track writing

Programming Patterns in plain English

Standard editing workflow for all of the units:
Strictly speaking, the sequencer is always in overwrite mode, so when you do not clear the Pattern first, you will edit the current steps of the Pattern. The workflow is like this: in STOP mode, you first select the "Pattern Write" mode, then you choose the Pattern Group and Pattern number you want to edit. In the process you can choose to clear the Pattern and change the time scale (to 4/4 or 3/4) and the "last step". For some units, clearing the Pattern does not automatically clear all these settings, so these have to be set separately, if needed.

(For the 303, you can use the random pitches, slides and accents that are always present in every Pattern and which can never be deleted, only overwritten. If new pitches, slides and accents are desired, these have to be entered first before proceeding.)

After this, you press RUN and you enter the steps into the Pattern by "tapping" the notes or instruments to the running beat or to the metronome. And that is basically "it".

Deviant editing modes per unit:
There's also an alternative and a bit more accurate way of entering the note steps, in which mode both the 303 and the 606/707 differ. That's because, all in all, the 303 is still a synth and the 606/707 are still drum machines:
- in the 303, note durations (time) can also be entered one by one in STOP mode
- in the 606/707, the instruments can also be placed on the Pattern steps during RUN mode

Programming Patterns in 10 easy steps

  Workflow TB-303 TR-606 TR-707 & TR-727 TR-808
  --STOP the sequencer-- STOP STOP STOP STOP
1. Select Pattern Write Turn the MODE switch to PATTERN WRITE Turn the MODE switch to PATTERN WRITE Press Shift + Pattern to choose STEP WRITE Turn knob to PATTERN CLEAR
Set the timing scale 1..4 (PRE-SCALE)
2. Select a Pattern Group Turn the PATT GROUP switch to I..IV
Press PATT. SECTION button A or B
Press the PATT GROUP button to select I or II Press the desired PATTERN GROUP A..D button Switch
BASIC VARIATION to A, AB or B,
or I/F-VARIATION to A or B
3. Select a Pattern Press PATTERN button 1..8 Press PATTERN button 1..16 Press PATTERN button 1..16 Press PATTERN button:
BASIC VARIATION 1..12,
or I/F-VARIATION 1..4
4. Clear the Pattern Hold PATTERN button 1..8 + press PATTERN CLEAR
- note steps are cleared (time data)
- timing scale is reset to 4/4
- last step is reset to 16
- pitches, slides and accents are retained
Hold PATTERN button 1..16 + press PATTERN CLEAR
- all instrument steps are cleared
- timing scale is retained
- last step is retained
Hold CLEAR + press Pattern button 1..16
- all instrument steps are cleared
- timing scale is reset to 4/4
- last step is reset to 16
press the red button
- A, B or both are cleared
- 1st is set to 16 STEPS
- 2nd is set to 0 STEPS
  Perform the next steps: Still during STOP Press RUN first During STOP or RUN during STOP
5. To set the timing scale to 4/4 Check the scale (see 7.), else clear the Pattern (see 4.) Set SCALE switch to 1 and press FUNCTION Press SCALE to light the LED of the bottom row Set the knob to 1st or 2nd,
Set PRE-SCALE switch to 3, and press the red button
6. To set the timing scale to 3/4 Hold FUNCTION + press
- last step is now 15
- note steps are retained

You can not switch back to 4/4 without clearing the note steps
Set SCALE switch to 3 and press FUNCTION Press SCALE to light the LED from the 2nd row Set the knob to 1st or 2nd,
Set PRE-SCALE switch to 1, and press the red button
7. Show scale Hold FUNCTION and check the LED above
- off for 4/4 time
- on for 3/4 time
Hold FUNCTION (also SETS scale!)
- quarter note (sync steps) LEDS light up
See scale LED Set the knob to 1st or 2nd,
Press the red button (also clears Pattern)
8. Set the last step Hold FUNCTION + press the STEP button the number of desired steps
- clears note steps (time data)
- when pressing the STEP button 16 times in 3/4: reset to 4/4
Hold LAST STEP and press 1..16 Hold LAST STEP and press 1..16 Set the knob to 1st or 2nd,
- hold the red button
- press the Last Step (1..16)
-         To add a maximum of 16 extra steps to this Pattern, turn the knob to 2nd PART
- hold the red button
- press the Last Step (1..16)

Reset the 2nd PART to 0 steps:
- hold the red button
- press TAP
- 303: Change the existing note pitches Press PITCH MODE and enter the pitches C..C' one by one in order
- hold TRANSPOSE + pitch for higher/lower octave pitches
- press BACK to re-enter the last one
- press PITCH MODE to restart

To save the pitches
- press NORMAL MODE after you're finished

Press PITCH MODE again to enter Slides/Accents/Transpose
- hold WRITE/NEXT (pitch sounds) + press DOWN, UP, ACCENT, SLIDE or nothing to toggle the property
- release WRITE/NEXT to save
- press BACK to re-enter the last one
- press PITCH MODE to restart

To save the pitch properties
- press NORMAL MODE after you've finished
xxx xxx  
- Choose for the 303:
Enter the note steps
- using TIME MODE (right), or
- using TAP recording (see 9.)
Press TIME MODE and press in order:
= get the next pitch & play it
= sustain the last pitch
 = rest (play silence)

After the "last step", the 303 returns to NORMAL MODE
xxx xxx  
  --RUN the sequencer-- during RUN only Already RUNning during RUN only  
- Choose for the 606 & 707:
Enter the instrument steps
- using step mode (right), or
- using TAP recording (see 9.)
xxx Use the INSTRUMENT switch to select a sound
- press the desired step button to switch the sound on/off
- hold PATTERN CLEAR to erase the current step
Check if the display shows "STEP WRITE", else press Shift + Pattern
- hold INSTRUMENT + press pad 1..16 or ACCENT to select a sound
- press the desired step button to switch the sound on/off
- hold INSTRUMENT + same pad number again (only 3..7) to write the FLAMmed instrument
Use the INSTRUMENT-SELECT switch to select a sound
- select the A or B mode to select the variation
- press the desired step button to switch the sound on/off

(TR-08) hold SUB STEP + press a step button, to place a sound between this and the next step (flam effect).
9. Prepare TAP recording Press PATTERN CLEAR
- clears note steps
- arms the TAP button
- starts the metronome sound
Use the INSTRUMENT switch to select a sound
- there is no metronome
Check if the display shows "TAP WRITE", else press Shift + Pattern
- press the INSTRUMENT button to switch the metronome on or off
Use the INSTRUMENT switch to select a sound
10. TAP record Press the TAP button to the beat to play the pitches one by one
- hold any button 1..8 + press TAP to sustain all notes.
- after the last step, the 303 plays the Pattern.
Press the TAP button to the beat Tap the desired instrument pad to the beat
- hold FLAM + pad 3..7 to add flam
Press the TAP button to the beat
(TR-08) Press SUB STEP + TAP the place a sound between the beats
  Done?
RUN in Pattern Play mode
Press STOP
- turn the switch to Pattern Play
- press RUN
Turn the switch to Pattern Play Press STOP
- press PATTERN
- press RUN
Press STOP
- switch the knob to MANUAL PLAY
- press RUN

There, I nailed it.

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