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Listening to art. Playing with audio. Sounding out technology. Composing in code. Rewinding the soundscape.

Buddha Machine Variations No. 32 (Microloop Trial)

A series of focused experiments

This is a Saturday evening trial run at selecting tiny bits of a single loop from a Buddha Machine and having them pulse against each other. Eventually the main source line is eliminated so that only these microloops remain. Toward the end, two of the microloops are further affected by delays that warble by changing ever so slightly within a narrow range at a rapid pace. There’s not much more to it than that. The source audio is the third generation of Buddha Machine, called Chan Fang, which came out a decade ago, back in 2010. The instrument heard is the qin, a Chinese zither.

There are five channels into the mixer. The purple one, channel five, is the unadulterated source audio. Channels one through four each get their own individual micoloop in real time, one at a time. Channels three and four are the ones eventually set to warble (channel four starting at 3:24, channel three at 4:52). The loops and delays occur in the ER-301 (the large synthesizer module in the lower left, running the Pedal Looper and Delay units). The warble is a result of a pair of waves that come from a combination of the Batumi (the one with four vertical levers directly above the ER-301) and the S.P.O. (the one with four black knobs, two to the right of the Batumi). I’m going to explore this approach further, likely combining microloops from various loops of the Chan Fang.

For further patch-documentation purposes, here is a straight-on shot of the synthesizer:

Video originally posted at There’s also a video playlist of the Buddha Machine Variations.

Tags: , , / Comments: 2 ]


  1. Kent Sparling
    [ Posted May 17, 2020, at 6:28 pm ]

    I really enjoyed this experiment/piece Marc! Just lovely. Looking forward to your further explorations – it is great fun to find a rich vein in the strata and follow it down deep. All the best from across the Bay… kS

    • Marc Weidenbaum
      [ Posted May 18, 2020, at 7:19 am ]

      Thanks very much, Kent. It’s been really enjoyable, and helpful, to focus like this.

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