SQ4 Sequence Processor by Dialog Audio Review
Did you ever come across an Instrument that sound great and you want to add some movement, did you try connecting your iPad as an x/y pad to an instrument? Do you wish to add some action and modulation to the Instrument to get more out of it?
Do you have old vintage gear that never included a sequencer? With SQ4 Sequence Processor, you can add movement and control to drive pads or effects in a hardware and software instrument.
SQ4 Sequence Processor allows users to create unique sequenced modulation patterns — four sequences with up to 128 steps per sequence. This is huge when it comes to the creation of advanced sequences to modulate and synchronize of vintage audio hardware and software parameters from within a DAW host application. Especially if the instruments do not come with a sequencer or a limited one. Dialog Audio did send a review copy with no strings attached.
You can download a demo version first and try it out first. The demo version will not entirely run as it stops processing from time to time and loading your presets is disabled. After purchase, you just enter the code received.
Dialog Audio has compiled extensive tutorials to show how you can setup your instrument within SQ4.If you never routed midi in your DAW the tutorials below are helpful
- Ableton Live Setup
- Apple Logic X Setup
- Apple Logic 9 Setup
- Avid Pro Tools Setup
- Cockos Reaper Setup
- Steinberg Cubase Setup
- PreSonus Studio One Setup
Dialog Audio has also tested several Audio Interfaces and provides more on the needed SysEx Messages and Synthesizer Command to assist you to get started quickly.
A warning if you use CV to control the external device: CV audio signals produced by the plug-in might damage your audio interface and/or other equipment such as synthesizers, speakers etc.
Through SQ4 you control hardware synthesizers with MIDI inputs via MIDI CC messages, RPN and non-RPN messages, or MIDI SysE messages. Or if you have really old hardware you can use CV (Control Voltage) signals, you need additional hardware and cables. The hardware you want to control needs to have input ports for example for MIDI.
SQ4 Sequence Processor drives and shapes sound generated by a software or hardware instrument. The hardware instrument needs to connect to your Computer. A software instrument is controlled through midi routing in your DAW.
You can select a Sequence Type, define the steps, direction, rate, add some natural movement through a swing parameter.
In the example below I did use SQ4 to add movement to a Kontakt Instruments most of us know. Thrill has that big pad in the middle that many of us control through their iPad (TouchOSC). Using SQ4 add value as it can produce a repeatable movement which I can modify at any time. I received a lot of feedback on how hard it is for some users to use TouchOSC with Thrill it makes that controlling the Pad much more accessible.
User interface & Usability
The UI follows the design that is established with Dialog Audios Modulation Processor 3244. The UI is easy to use. Preset management could be enhanced and is a bit complex. It is perfect to see that new products like SQ4 can be scaled to support retina displays. SQ4 Sequence Processor can be loaded by MP3244 Modulation Processor if you have the MP3244 in your toolbox.
Rating: Five out of five stars
SQ4 Sequence Processor injects new movement into vintage hardware synthesizer and adds energy to software instruments. Many of us have old hardware sampler or synthesizer, and rompler that never had a sequencer or a limited sequencer. With SQ4 Sequence Processor, you are able with the help of your DAW to combine & generate new sounds from your hardware. For driving software synths or instruments, SQ4 Sequence Processor can automate and drive through standard MIDI control your Kontakt, Falcon or any other Synth you have. The software would only need to be able to receive MIDI commands.