Buzz machines are application extensions which may be accessed, configured, and programmed from within Buzz to create, shape, and design sound and create music.
The single most correct definition of a Generator is a machine that accepts no input. A simpler and less correct definition of a Generator is "a machine that generates sound." Usually, Generators are connected to the Master machine, either directly or through effect chains. Each Generator provides the user with a collection of parameters, which may be manipulated or automated to design or mutate sound (respectively).
Types of Generators
Buzz comes with a large amount of synthesizers of various shapes and sizes, including additive, subtractive, FM, physical modeling, and other synthesis implementations. Some generators require samples (audio files) to process - trackers, loopers, and more advanced granular machines rely on this operation. Samples can be loaded in the Wavetable screen. Polac VST(i) Loader acts as a generator that runs the VSTi plug-in. BTDSys provides several unique Peer Machines, most of which act as Generators that create control-data that can be assigned to any machine's parameter. Apart from the Peer Machines, most of the rules described below apply to all Generators.
Generators in Machine View
Each of the parameters has a slider which may be manipulated in real time by dragging the slider with your left mouse button. Any Buzz machine parameter may be assigned a MIDI controller by right-clicking the slider, selecting "Bind to MIDI controller" and selecting a previously defined MIDI controller from the drop-down menu. Please consult the MIDI Input article for more information.
In addition to parameters, Generators may implement global settings, known in Buzz as [[Machine Attributes]. These may be accessed by clicking the machine in Machine View and selecting "Attributes..." menu entry. If a machine has no attributes, nothing will be displayed.
Generators in Pattern View
Generators utilize note triggers in pattern view, although some Generators are driven using switches (input consisting of 0 or 1) or by probability values (in usual hexadecimal format for Buzz pattern-coding. Note input is signified by a three-dot placeholder, which allows for an input of a pitch and octave. Pitch is entered using z-s-x-d-c keyboard input, while the octave is entered using the numeric input of your choice. For more information of Pattern View control of Machine Parameters, please consult the Pattern View article.
Generators in the Sequencer
Every Generator is automatically allocated an empty pattern, therefore auto-creating a track in the Sequencer View. Each of the patterns programmed in Pattern View may be placed in your Sequence. Pressing the sets a mute command to the generator, which turns off the machine. Pressing the comma key on your keyboard allows you to break (cease playback) of a pattern. (For example, if your pattern is 64 ticks long, and you use the break command on the 48th tick in your sequence, no data from 48th tick on in your pattern will be played).
Effects are defined as machines that accept input signal.
Types of Effects
It is difficult to categorize all of the processing that Buzz has to offer. In addition to reverberation, delay, chorus, and distortion machines, there are FFT-based machines, spatial effects, and experimental machines that allow for unique sonic results. PeerEnv of Peer Machines effect allows to generate control data from the audio input of the machine. It is safe to say that there is a rich collection of sound-processing machines in Buzz.
Effects in Machine View
Each of the parameters has a slider which may be manipulated in real time by dragging the slider with your button. Any Buzz machine parameter may be assigned a MIDI controller by clicking the slider, selecting "Bind to MIDI controller" and selecting a previously defined MIDI controller from the drop-down menu. Please consult the MIDI Input article for more information.
Generators in Pattern View
Generators in Sequencer
To add a track for any Effect in the Sequencer, you may use thekeyboard shortcut for manual track addition (or select the "Add Track" after clicking somewhere in the Sequencer background). Alternatively, you may simply create a Pattern for an Effect, as this auto-creates a track for the appropriate machine in the Sequencer. In addition to Mute and Break Sequencer commmands outlined above, Effects also utilize thru command, accessible as a keyboard shortcut for underscore. Thru is essentially a bypass command that turns of the computation of the effect, allowing the singal to come out of the effect unchanged.
With the exception of Peer Machines, the Master Machine is the terminal point of your signal path.
Master in the Machine View
The Master Machine is responsible for the summation (mixing) of all machines attached to it. The parameters of the Master Machine include global volume, BPM (beats-per-minute) and TPB (ticks-per-beat) settings, as well as the volume sliders for each of its inputs. Note that the Master machine allocates individual volume slider for every machine plugged into it. The Master Machine has no attributes.
Every signal that is expected to come out of your speakers must be connected to the Master machine at the end of its Effect chain. The only exceptions to this rule are the Peer Machines which broadcast their signals on their own, without the need of connections.
Signal Analysis of the Master Machine is an excellent tool to view the waveform and spectrograph of the master track in real-time as it plays. To access the Signal Analysis,click the Master Machine, and choose "Signal Analysis" from the drop-down menu.
Master in the Pattern View
Usually, the Master Machine automation is reserved for tempo changes within the track, where new BPM value may be implemented. Readers familiar with Metric Modulation in music may find such automation useful. The resolution of your patterns (TPB) may be automated to access non-integer multiples of your default tempo with minimal computation on behalf of the user.
Master in the Sequencer
The Master Machine track may be added manually either by creating a Pattern in Pattern View or by using thekeyboard shortcut in the Sequencer View. Mute and Break commands are available, just as for Generator machines. Keep in mind, however, that a Mute command in the Master track will mute the entire track.