14 Apr 2013The new version of Hex is now available for download. This version has been completely redesigned from the ground up, and is significantly faster, smoother, and overall better and more intuitive than the original version. Please check it out in the Hex section.
Hex will now be available in two editions: Free and Professional. The free edition has a few minor limitations such as no multi-track functionality, but overall it is very usable. At the moment, the only option is the free edition, because we want to get some feedback before we release the professional edition. The synthesizers will remain free of charge.
Speaking of which, in addition to the release of The Viking yesterday, there is also a minor update to 2032 available for download. This new version is fully compatible with the new version of Hex.
13 Apr 2013We have some very exciting news today. First, we are releasing a new version of The Viking that has been rebuilt completely from scratch. This new version offers unique new functionality and is finally compatible with both Windows and Mac. See The Viking's page for more details.
Also, a new version of Hex has been completed and will be posted here very soon. We don't want to give away too many details yet, but the new version is very significantly faster and more usable. It is also worth noting that we are converting to a new, more comprehensive format for transmitting Dynamic Tonality MIDI messages, which all the new software will use going forward (backwards compatibility will not be maintained). The new format will allow you to use Hex to control all of the synths' Dynamic Tonality parameters.
2 Oct 2012We've uploaded a new video of a Dynamic Tonality performance—Yak Butter.
27 Apr 2012A slew of updates available for download... In particular, the size of the period (pseudo-octave) can now be set in Relayer and Hex and appropriately reflected in 2032 (in terms of the underlying tuning and spectral matching). Other updates include:
2032 (a modal physical modeling synthesizer that supports microtonal tunings and matching of the timbre to the underlying tuning. Tunings, timbral matching, and physical models can be changed dynamically)
- The size of the period can now be changed dynamically (in Setup or via Relayer or Hex)
- Improved sound quality (sustained notes no longer overload)
- Improved balance between low and high notes
- Fixed bug in OS X version where MIDI and audio options did not work correctly
- Addition of a hidden all-notes-off/panic/reset button at the top of the tower
- Fixed rounding errors which made tuning sent by Hex or Relayer, and that displayed by 2032, different
Relayer (for players of the AXiS-49 and the QWERTY keyboard - Relayer provides access to a broad range of note layouts and microtonal tunings. Can be used with 2032 or standard multi-timbral synths - e.g., Virsyn Tera, Pianoteq, Alphakanal Automat, probably others)
- Improved graphics
- Layouts can be rotated in increments of 60 degrees
- You can create your own layout presets (go to the text file Layouts.txt)
- Protection against MIDI feedback loops
- A MIDI thru port selector for control/pedal messages
- Compatibility updates for the new version of 2032
- Lots of useful new preset tunings
Hex (A MIDI sequencer designed to make sequencing in a wide variety of microtonal tunings as straightforward as in 12-TET. It replaces the familiar piano roll with a lattice roll)
- Efficiency improvements
- Compatibility updates for the new version of 2032
Note that the new versions of Hex, 2032, and Relayer, are not compatible with the old versions. So, if you update one, you should update them all.
We hope you enjoy (if you do - please email us to let us know!).
Also in the works... a C++ version of Hex - many more features, much more efficient, and generally better. A new version of The Viking (an additive synth, disguised as an old-fashioned subtractive synth but with dynamically alterable microtonal tunings and spectral matching) for Windows and OS X.
1 Mar 2012To coincide with the publication of our Computer Music Journal article about Hex, we have a new version (v1.5) available with some significant updates.
Hex is a free MIDI sequencer designed to make sequencing music in and across a large variety of novel tunings as straightforward as it is in twelve-tone equal temperament. It replaces the piano roll used in conventional MIDI sequencers with a two-dimensional lattice roll in order to enable the intuitive visualization and dynamic manipulation of tuning. It is compatible with the Dynamic Tonality synths—TransFormSynth, The Viking, and 2032—and, for static tunings, with any synthesizer that handles channel pitch bend.
The updates include:
- The lattice now shears, rather than rotates, when the tuning is changed. This looks much neater—particularly for more "extreme" tunings!
- The use of shear means that octaves are always vertically aligned. It also means that, in addition to vertical distance on the lattice being proportional to pitch, horizontal distance is proportional to distance along the cycle of (pseudo-) fifths.
- Adjacent Predominant Seconds (APS) layouts* are now available for any MOS scale** with nineteen or fewer tones. You choose an MOS scale by selecting its number of large and small steps in the Setup window, then click on "APS" to display the appropriate APS note layout for that scale.
- Hex now supports microtonal pitches for standard multitimbral synths. In Setup, you can select either "DT" (for a Dynamic Tonality synth, like 2032) or "std" (for a standard multitimbral synth, like the synths built into Windows and OS X, or SimpleSynth, or Virsyn Tera, etc.). In both cases, the tones are played at the correct microtonal pitches. When using a non-DT multitimbral synth, Hex uses pitch bend to get the correct microtonal pitches.
- You can play the hexagons by clicking on them with a mouse (or finger, if you have a tablet). This is a great way to find the correct pitch when composing in an unfamiliar scale or tuning.
- Various other small enhancements...
* APS layouts are isomorphic generalizations of the Wicki layout, and are applicable to any MOS scale. In an APS layout, the most common (predominant) steps (e.g., diatonic wholetones) run along rows, while the less common steps (e.g., diatonic semitones) are given by a "carriage return" to the next row above. To learn more about APS layouts, try the above-mentioned CMJ paper.
** MOS scales (also known as well-formed) have only two steps sizes that are evenly distributed. Familiar examples are the pentatonic and diatonic scales—the first has 2 large steps and 3 small, the second has 5 large steps and 2 small—but there are numerous unfamiliar possibilities that may hold great musical potential. For a technical discussion of MOS scales, try our paper Scratching The Scale Labyrinth or the free preprint.
15 Apr 2011A new app called Relayer is now available (Mac version or Windows version). Relayer enables musicians who play the AXiS-49, the QWERTY computer keyboard, or the Thummer, to play in a wide variety of isomorphic note layouts and tunings using either a Dynamic Tonality synth or a standard multitimbral synth.
14 Jan 2011We've uploaded a new video of a Dynamic Tonality performance to the Media section, and a new sample .hxp (Hex project file) to the Hex section.
06 Nov 2010We have updated the Learn and Hex sections. Both now offer better information, and the Hex section now provides a sample .hxp (Hex project) file for download. We have also produced a short demonstration video for 2032:
01 Nov 2010Our first version of 2032 is now available in the new 2032 section. 2032 uses modal synthesis to model physical objects, but integrates Dynamic Tonality in order to eradicate, annihilate, eliminate, devastate, incinerate, exterminate, mutilate, obliterate, and/or pound into oblivion the laws of natural physics. It is fully compatible with Hex and any standard digital audio workstation, and works on both Windows and Macintosh computers. We have also made a small update to Hex, which is available in the Hex section.
04 Oct 2010Hex, our Dynamic Tonality MIDI sequencer, is now available in the Hex section. It is a free download, and works on both Windows and Macintosh computers. Over the next week or two, we will be updating 2032, The Viking, and TransFormSynth to ensure full compatibility with Hex.
09 Feb 2010Obviously it's been some time since this website has been updated, but on the bright side, we've been busy bustling along with Hex and 2032, which will both be available very soon. In other news, our article mentioned below was published in Computer Music Journal and is available here. We are also working on a new article about Hex and 2032 which is nearly complete.
08 Nov 2008The site is undergoing some changes in preparation for our article "Spectral Tools for Dynamic Tonality and Audio Morphing" which will soon be published in Computer Music Journal. We are also making significant progress with Hex (a forthcoming sequencer designed specifically for composition with Dynamic Tonality), and a new DT modal synthesizer, 2032. These should both be available in late December, along with an accompanying paper. In January, we are planning to port The Viking over to Max/MSP so that Mac users can try it out.
14 Sept 2008In preparation for the Haptics and Audio Interaction Design (HAID) 2008 conference in Jyvaskyla, Finland, we have updated this site with much more useful information. Our demo submission paper can be found in PDF format here. Hello to everyone from the conference!
26 June 2008The site is now up and running. Please bear with us as we fill in the content over the next few weeks. We're currently finishing up an extensive learning section where you can read about all the fun theory for Dynamic Tonality. In the meantime, feel free to visit the contact section and email us for further information.
This site is maintained by Anthony Prechtl and Andrew Milne. Feel free to e-mail us if you have any questions: aprechtl [ a t ] gmail [ d o t ] com, or andymilne [ a t ] tonalcentre [ d o t ] org