Korg SQ-1 Step Sequencer

Korg SQ-1 Step Sequencer

Korg SQ-1 Step Sequencer

B&H # KOSQ1 MFR # SQ1
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Product Highlights

  • 2 x 8 Step Buttons
  • Hz/V, V/Oct, CV, MIDI, USB , littleBits
  • Sync with MS-20, Volca, Monotribe
  • Alternate, Order, Parallel Turn Modes
  • Parallel Order, CV/Duty, CV/Slide
  • Battery or USB Powered
  • Active Step Mode
  • Step Jump Mode
  • Slide Mode
  • Quarter, Eighth, and 16th Note Steps
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Korg SQ1 overview

  • 1Description

Harness the full power of your synthesizers with the compact 2 x 8 Korg SQ-1 Step Sequencer. The unit offers a wealth of jacks for connecting to synthesizers such as the MS-20. Inspired by the original SQ-10 step sequencer, this modern update lets you play your vintage and new synthesizers by ear with an intuitive hardware-based workflow.

Powered by either AA batteries or a USB connection, the sequencer supports the Hz/V control standard, which makes it suitable for controlling the MS-20 or MS-20 mini. It also supports the V/Oct standard with the ability to control the voltage level of the CV output and polarity of the GATE output can be specified as appropriate for the device that is connected.

To connect your synthesizers, the sequencer provides two CV/GATE out channels as well as MIDI OUT, USB MIDI, littleBits out (to connect to the littleBits synth kit by littleBits Electronics Inc), plus the SYNC IN/OUT channel that allows you to connect to Korg's Volca and Monotribe series of products.

The unit offers two channels (A and B) of an 8-step sequencer that can operate consecutively or in a variety of other modes. You can run A and B following each other to function as a 16-step sequencer, ignore the order to make the steps play randomly, or use A and B to control different parameters as they run in parallel. The variety of selectable modes enables everything from simple sequences to complex changes.

The 2 x 8 step buttons can be used in the traditional way to turn notes on/off notes or you can use the MODE button to switch their function, allowing you to perform the sequence. The "Active Step" mode lets you skip steps mid-way through a sequence and the "Step Jump" mode lets you instantly play just the step that you press to produce irregular rhythms or effects that are reminiscent of short loops. The "Slide" mode produces an effect in which steps are connected smoothly, which, for example, could be used on a synth bass to create an acid sound.

For fine tuning the sequencer, the step resolution can be selected as quarter notes, eighth notes, or 16th notes. You can specify the way in which the step knobs control the pitch. Either the knob values can specify the pitch directly or they can specify the closest note in a major, minor, or chromatic scale. The sequencer is housed in a sturdy sheet-metal enclosure.

MS-20 Compatibility
Uses Hz/V standard to provide excellent pitch stability limiting for control of the MS-20 and MS-20 mini
Connectors
Provides two CV/GATE OUT channels, a standard MIDI OUT, USB MIDI, littleBits out (to connect to to littleBits synth kit), as well as SYNC IN/OUT channel to connect to the Volca series or a Monotribe
Versatile Sequencer Modes
Provides two channels (A and B) of an 8 step sequencer that can operate consecutively or be used in a variety of other modes such as in 16-step sequencer mode, ignoring the order to play randomly, or with different control parameters for A and B run in parallel
Volca Style Step Buttons
Features a 2 x 8 step button grid that allows you to turn notes on/off or use the MODE button to switch their function for powerful performance possibilities
Active Step
Lets you skip steps mid-way through a sequence
Step Jump
Lets you instantly play just the step that you press to produce irregular rhythms or effects that are reminiscent of short loops
Slide
Produces an effect in which steps are connected smoothly
In the Box
Korg SQ-1 Step Sequencer
  • 2 x AA Batteries for Testing
  • Mini Plug - DIN Cable
  • Limited 1-Year Warranty
  • Table of Contents
    • 1Description

    Korg SQ1 specs

    Mode Sequencer Modes
    Alternate
    Order
    Parallel Turn
    Parallel Order
    CV/Duty
    CV/Slide
    CV/Duty Random
    Random

    Step Modes
    Gate On/Off
    Active Step
    Slide
    Step Jump
    Resolution Quarter notes
    Eighth notes
    Sixteenth notes
    CV In/Out Controls Out Pitch: Linear, Minor, Major, Chromatic
    Out Voltage: 1 V, 2 V, 5 V (Oct), 8 V (HZ/V)
    Gate Output Polarity: +(positive polarity), -(negative polarity)
    Sync In/Out Polarity: +(rise), -(fall)
    Connectors
    LittleBits out jack (mini monoaural phone jack)
    OUT (MIDI OUT) jack (mini stereo phone jack)
    CV-A OUT-Gate jack (mini monaural phone jack, CV OUT: Output level 1 V, 2 V, 5 V, 8 (Hz/V), GATE OUT: output level 10 V)
    CV-B OUT-GATE jack (mini monaural phone jack, CV OUT: Output Level 1 V, 2 V, 5 V, 8 (Hz/V), GATE OUT: Output level 10 V
    IN-SYNC-OUT jack (mini monaural phone jack, SYNC IN: Max input level 20 V, SYNC OUT: Output level 5 V)
    USB jack (type B, USB MIDI)
    Power Supply 2x AA batteries (alkaline recommended) or USB power
    Battery Life Approximately 5 hours (when using alkaline batteries)
    Dimensions (W x D x H) 7.60 x 3.31 x 2.48" (9.30 x 8.40 x 6.30 cm)
    Weight 1.41 lb (641.00 g)
    Packaging Info
    Package Weight 2.2 lb
    Box Dimensions (LxWxH) 9.9 x 4.5 x 3.4"

    Korg SQ1 reviews

    SQ-1 Step Sequencer is rated 4.8 out of 5 by 4.
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great sequencer, unbeatable price For the price, the korg sq-1 can't be beat. I can use this to control all my synths including a Moog sub phatty, arturia minibrute, kawai k1 and a korg volca beats. Its compact, sturdily built and can be used with both midi and cv. It comes with 2 aa batteries (it can be powered by batteries or usb) and a midi to 1/4 input converter. I only wish it had come with some patch cables in order to readily be used to sequence via cv. I made the mistake of assuming it came with and i had to run out and buy some. Otherwise i am very pleased with the sq-1 and would highly recommend it.
    Date published: 2015-08-04
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from great buy within a day of ordering this simple yet impactful addition to my MS 20 mini arrived and days later I'm still finding new ways to utilize the SQ-1. The easy hands on nature of the seqeuncer allowed me to dive right in and learn as I went. The simple design allows easy connection with my hardware and software synths and the overall build quality is sturdier than I had thought. However useful it has been it is a bummer that it only runs on battery power but having used it for many hours I have yet to replace them.
    Date published: 2015-03-09
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great sequencer at an unbeatable price. With a $ price tag, the Korg SQ-1 really cant be beat. I can easily use this to control my Moog Sub Phatty, Arturia Minibrute, Kawai K1 and my Korg Volca beats. It is compact, sturdily built and can be used with both Midi and CV. It comes with 2 AA batteries (it can be powered by both batteries and USB) and a midi to 1/4 input adaptor. I only wish it came with some patch cables to readily be used to sequence by CV. I assumed that it did, and had to go out and buy some. Otherwise, it's highly recommended.
    Date published: 2015-08-04
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Easy, Fun, Simple For the price, this device does offer a host of great ways to trigger many analog devices. One great thing is the C/V out jacks which are a serious plus. It is a very basic sequencer but I have looked all over and I believe this is one of the best ones for the price. A basic sequencer can be surprisingly hard to find! The different settings also make this unit better. One the down side however, It would have been nice to have a simple digital screen built in so you could see the notes you input. There are 16 clear knobs to tune each step to your desire, but it would greatly help to be able to see the actual note positions. Personally I would have rather it come with a screen and a simple memory bank like the Volcas and the price be about $$but maybe I'm asking too much. All around it is a useful device and it is fun to use. It is also cased in a very durable shell which is nice if it gets dropped or falls. Sounds great with my Moog Sub Phatty.
    Date published: 2015-06-28
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