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Re: Echoplex LoopStart?

At 1:16 PM -0700 8/5/01, Neil Goldstein wrote:
>    I have  never successfully used the LoopStart switch.   From  reading
>the manual, its supposed to redefine the loop start at the instant of  the
>button press.   The  manual doesn't show any other settings before this
>feature should work.     Is  there any possible user error I could be
>making before I'll have to chalk it up  to a repair issue?    All  the
>other features are working fine.   Thanks  for the enlightening tips,
>meanwhile.    Neil  

This function of the EDP is actually called "StartPoint", and most likely
you are just not understanding what it does.

StartPoint lets you tell the Echoplex to consider a different point in your
loop the "beginning".

This has no audible effect at the time you do it, because the loop
continues looping as it was. However, it makes a big difference for any
functions that care where the start of the loop is. For example, Quantize
and SwitchQuantize will now use your newly defined startpoint as the spot
where they engage a function or switch to a new loop. (the point they
quantize to.)  If you are triggering loops to play from the start, this new
startpoint is the point where they will start from. It can also make a
difference for midi sync points.

It does have a visual effect. When you record a loop, notice that the
right-most decimal point of the display blinks each time the beginning of
the loop comes by. When you change the startpoint of the loop, you will see
this LED blink at your newly defined startpoint.

StartPoint is a little odd to use as a function, because it is actually
located in the Parameter matrix. So to access it you have to press the
parameter button once to get to the P1 row, then press the button for
startpoint. It doesn't have a midi command to directly access it in the
current version, but in the next software it will.

So let's try it. Turn the Quantize parameter On. Record a simple loop on
your Echoplex. Make sure it is something where where you can obviously tell
where the beginning is. (some percussive start or obvious rhythm or
whatever.)  Listen to it for a bit, and look at the StartPoint LED at the
right of the display. It should be blinking each time your startpoint comes

So you can see how functions care about the startpoint, press Mute
somewhere in the middle of the loop. (it could be any function, but Mute
makes this obvious.) The Echoplex will quantize this, and wait until the
startpoint comes before muting the loop. If you press Mute again, you will
again see the Echoplex wait until the startpoint comes before it UnMutes
the loop. That should give you a clear idea about where the startpoint is
and how it gets used. (you can also try triggering your loop from Mute,
which is done by pressing the "insert" button while it is muted. you can
press it repeatedly to re-trigger the loop and make it stutter from your

Now let's move the startpoint somewhere else. Press the StartPoint button
at some different point in the middle of your loop. (Do this by going to
the P1 row with the Parameters button, listening for the right spot, then
pressing the button for StartPoint, then go back to play mode).  You should
now see the StartPoint LED blink at a different point in your loop than it
did before, which should be the spot where you just hit the StartPoint
button. Press Mute again. The Echoplex will wait for this new StartPoint to
Mute the loop. Try some re-triggering, you will hear it start from this new

So why is this useful?

Say you created your loop in a very organic way, by slowly overdubbing bits
here and there. It might start off without much rhythm to it, but over time
some of the things you've overdubbed give the loop a distinct rhythm.
Probably some point has emerged that feels like the "start" of the loop,
and chances are it is nowhere near what the echoplex thinks is the
startpoint. Maybe you want to start doing more rhythmic actions on the
Echoplex based on this audible start of your loop, using quantize or
whatever. So you quickly reset the StartPoint to this new spot in your
loop, and then the Echoplex will use that as the beginning point for all
quantize and sync actions.

In the next generation of Echoplex software, these concepts will become
even more interesting.


Kim Flint                     | Looper's Delight
kflint@loopers-delight.com    | http://www.loopers-delight.com