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Analog Sequencer Simulator



By Neil Wakeling
New version released October 2002

I am now happy to announce a new version of PULSAR which brings us to Rev 2.13! Pulsar is a simple riff sequencer, recreating analog-style sequencer effects. It works on three channels at once, each channel having up to 16 notes (individually configurable). All note values and velocities are fully alterable, and can be entered using the mouse or from an attached MIDI keyboard. Each of the three rows has an independent tempo control, and playback of each row can be forwards, reverse, shuttle, or random.

I have had the pleasure of being BETA tester of the new version (and hopefully future versions) of PULSAR. It was quite a thrill to be able to suggest a change or idea and have Neil come back with a new version implementing those ideas.

PULSAR: Features

* MIDI song start/stop and MIDI timeclock
This allows you to send Midi clock to a sequencer or drum machine so PULSAR can be in even time sync with those devices.Works well if you have a second Atari or PC with sequencer to record PULSARS output.This is a major addition !

* Use of the numeric keypad for realtime transpose of sequences:
This idea came from my use of Dr T Algo-comp products such as Tunesmith and Fingers which use this method for transposing. A very FUN feature which allows interactive play of PULSAR.

* Use of function keys for realtime control of sequence playback:
F1, F2, F3 turns each row on and off (Muting)
F4, F5, F6 scrolls thru the playback features for each row (FWD/SHUTTLE/REVERSE/RANDOM)
* Use of spacebar for song start/stop
* Demo files: ( The PUL folder)
* Stable timing - completely rewritten timing code.
* STeem compatible - run on your PC's soundcard.
* 3 Control rows - send MIDI controller data at each sequencer step, to any MIDI channel.
* Improved mouse control options for data entry. This includes use of the SHIFT key for data entry of most values: Inc / dec by +- 1, or by +- 10 at a time if SHIFT held down. Notes and transpose amounts inc / dec by +- 12 semitones (octave).

Controller list

*Added menus to control rows - if not playing, this lets you choose from list of standard controllers.
Default control row file added, DEFCON.PLC, should be in same folder as pulsar.prg

Menu for Controller copy and paste

*Added menu entries to copy / paste controller row information.

Menu for first / last / channel selectors

*Added menu to first / last / channel selectors. If pulsar is NOT playing, then a menu appears for instant selection. If playing, then works by adding one per button click. (Cannot use menu when playing as the menu dialog prevents notes playing)

While beta testing, we exchanged some humor in our responses. Some were rather wild referances to the creature Gollum from JRR Tolkiens fantasy Lord of the Rings ( and now very popular because of the movie(s) releases. Thus the rather interesting ABOUT PULSAR dialog.

Menu for first / last / channel selectors

However, there was in a grain of truth in the pocket statement: everytime Neil made a new version for me to try I would bring home the disc from work in my front pocket.So you could say: Pulsar was in my Pocket!

NEW! NOV 2002. Neil has made another beta version of PULSAR ( which brings us to version 2.14. This was at my request to increase the tempo limit which can now be set to 999! This means you can create nice fast sequencer effects. I have also included some new PULS in the file, one of which is the sequence used by Pink Floyd on their "Dark Side of the Moon" album and the song : "On the run". ( thus the file is called: "ontherun.pul")This featured an EMS Synthi AKS doing a very fast sequence, which now you can replicate using Pulsar! Another neat trick is to program a nice up and down scale, then speed up the tempo, and then use the transpose keys to "play" the arpegio effects in real time. Feedback is appreciated. Download it below.

I would also encourage you to visit NEIL WAKELINGS web site, Home of PULSAR
Neil Wakelings Web Site

Neil Wakeling

Check out his other Atari programs as well as his other pages including his CDs.
Neil is also part of the Atari-Midi Mailing List.