Approaching: norns



Besides MLR, that looper was one of the main reasons for me to get Norns. Hope we will get some more infos about it.


not sure if it has been brought up. but rodrigos the chocolate grinder app would be incredible implemented into norns. i have no norns or ability to make this happen. just an idea that would help nornsers. nornies.


That wouldn’t surprise me either. But, I repeat:
The instructions screen is blank, and so is the interface.

There’s no visual feedback of any kind.

Press a button! Turn an encoder! Got a grid? Mash all of those buttons!
What changed? Hell if I know.

Given that it’s a four voice rec/looper, here’s a few questions that spring to mind:

  • How do I record a loop?
  • How do I signal the end of a recording?
  • How do I switch voices?
  • Are there tempo controls?
  • Can I mute and restore layers?
  • Can I adjust their relative volumes?

Not being able to answer any of those questions (and not having to ask with his other scripts) leads me to believe that this particular script got included in either a half-written or a broken state.

And presumably, there’s a more recent version somewhere, which isn’t half-written or broken.

That’s why I mentioned it.


@greaterthanzero, I am pretty sure that they just removed that EMB folder in the latest update.


Here’s the clarification on the state of the EMB folder from a few weeks ago, further up in the thread:


See, that’s why I figured there would be a new update available. But the version number matches what I have, so I backed out of the process.


yes, its a noninteractive test script, loads the SoftCut engine and sets some parameters. there’s not much else to tell. it is not actually broken or half-written, just not very interesting. sorry it was included on the shipped image. feel free to add some controls and make an interesting delay to your tastes.

no, i have not made any kind of “fully featured” looping application at the moment. most of my work on norns has been on backend features, building the device tree, the event loop, the SC class system, the scripting / C glue, the reverb and compressor, the ugens and engines underlying mlr and earthsea, &c. i’ve barely used it for music.

most of my musical applications of computers are noninteractive anyway and very simple (delays and sinewaves, most musical decisions and materials being relegated to human beings) - and i tend to make many small programs with specific functions, not big programs with lots of “features.” so they might disappoint you in the end.

i’ve basically taken a week-long break from norns. meant to do some backend work but have been busy with Life Stuff, day job and mixing a record. will get back into it shortly but my issues list remains backend work supporting the creative needs of others. this is fine. but my goal is to enable you to make your own looper. :slight_smile:

i do enjoy the elementary CA harmonic sequencer thing, which also demonstrates pitch sampling and other system features we haven’t really talked about yet. i’ll integrate it with param system and re-add.

really!? oh dear ok. well, the takeaway is that it is easy to adapt the SoftCut engine used by MLR to other kinds of looping / sample cutting / echo interfaces. i would prefer to leave the UI design and implementation to others but i can make an interactive example or two to get the ball rolling.

at the moment though, i am putting my time into looking to make better use of the norns’ multiple cores to distirbute DSP processing, allowing us to revert some last-minute cuts to audio quality, improving MLR and other applications of varispeed tape-like audio buffer manipulation. (

Norns: Development
split this topic #1822

2 posts were merged into an existing topic: Norns: Development

Norns: Development

just wanted to say briefly that my norns arrived yesterday and I spent sunup to sundown today fooling around with norns + grid + lunchbox. I’ve been poking around grids and software for ages now, though the max/msp and euro eras, and I can’t remember the last time I recorded so much stuff so easily and had so much fun. norns is a fantastic concept fantastically executed, and I can’t wait to keep watching it grow. kudos to everyone involved!


About the looper. Please don‘t get me wrong but right on the monome website it says that a “asynchronous looper (stompbox-style)” is included with Norns. So I thought “loops” would be said looper. Or at least that it was coming. Maybe @tehn meant some other (upcoming) looper, I don‘t know.

I understand that a big part of Norns is about developing your own applications. But it is also a bit of a bummer that this Looper might not be pre-made.


@boboter mlr can function as an async looper, but my intention was to implement a grid-less one— and the overwhelming response (selling out and the subsequent assembly/shipping crush) back-burnered that programming

but i’d be happy to put one together and i’d love to hear ideas of what the interface could be, if people have ideas.


@boboter I’ve been working on a completely async looper as well. Five slots, up to 10 seconds recording time for each slot (can be changed easily), it also allows a simple glitching effect on the loops (jumping around in the position of each loop). I’ll be happy to upload it to the github repo once it’s finished. And I could send you the lua script and sc engine if you wanted to check it out.

photo here:


I would love to check it out!


I would love to check out your looper. Just a heads up: I don‘t know any code, so I could just share some user feedback, if that help.

In my experience, loopers are used so differenly that almost everbody is looking for different features.

If you open up a thread about a norns looper, I‘m sure many folks around here will give input.


i’d love to see the code and try it out too!

@carltesta also very curious about your work on “sway” which appears to be an sc performance patch…might be educational even if it’s too advanced/impractical for use with norns


Norns arrived yesterday. 5 minutes in and Freyja wants to play with it


@boboter @tehn @carltesta

i’ll make a simply async looper later today, it should not take long and entirely consists of UI programming. of course should not keep anyone else from making one too. i don’t really wanna spend time on a design-by-committee right now, would rather post some code and invite modifications.


As a very inexperienced programmer, I am getting much further working from/on existing norns scripts. So this makes me very excited :slight_smile:


Norns = Metal House Machine

My norns arrived at the freight forwarding address. I love that the company named it a METAL HOUSE MACHINE on their packaging slip.


Fell asleep to “why?” last night after a brief but enjoyable session of poking around (kinda went nuts with “step” for a bit). Really long day consisting mostly of entirely too much work, but norns sure was a nice way to end it.

Studies, next!