Ingenious Instruments for Creative Minds
Skippy
Skippy is a matrix and nonmatrix polyrhythmic sequencer (linear and logarithmic) which offers four completely independent tracks with a very simple interface: one button per track, one function per screen, no submenus.
Skippy operates either on a realtime time passing calculation (nonmatrix mode) or based on a fixed step duration concept like many sequencers (matrix mode). Both modes can coexist track by track. For example, a TILES sequence is a matrix function where a step has a predetermined value in the sequence, and depending on the algorithm, a gate will or will not be generated at each step. On the other hand, with a Gaussian sequence, the notion of fixed step value disappears.
Depending on the algorithm, a new time value will be assigned to each step, allowing time progression outside any matrix notion. Some functions commonly found in sequencers as matrices are calculated in real time here, based on duration. Skippy’s EUCLID function, for example, operates this way.
To retain the notion of rhythm and repetition, however, the always fixed unit in a sequence is the time it takes Skippy to complete one screen revolution. This value remains repetitive regardless of the number of steps or the chosen algorithm.
Time in Skippy can speed up or slow down, allowing the exploration of unconventional and experimental rhythm combinations. For instance, one track can be divided into 31 steps, another into 17 steps, a third into 61 steps, and a fourth into 42 steps. This will create random yet repetitive confrontations, enabling the exploration of highly complex repetitive patterns.
An external clock can be used with Skippy, but in this case, some nonmatrix functions cannot be fully utilized. It's much better to use Skippy's clock output as a reference unit for the entire system.
Functions per track
– BPM (10 to 600)
– Number of steps (1 to 64)
– Linear or log
– Random function
– Chaotic function
– Direction: clockwise, counterclockwise, pingpong, pause
– Number of steps before the start of the sequence
– Number of steps before the end of the sequence
– Gate duration
Specific algorithms
– Euclidean (Bjorklund)
– Matrix Patterns
– microtiming patterns
– matrix rotation
Clock
– External clock input or Reset
– Clock output
– Clock division.
Menus
BPM
Each track can have its own duration, from 10 to 600 BPM.
STEP
From 1 to 64 steps per screen rotation for each track.
BEGIN
Where the steps start.
END
Where the steps stop.
GATES
Proportional or fixed gate time duration.
PROBA
Steps are played randomly.
CHAOS
The time between steps becomes chaotic.
WAY
Rotation direction of each track.
SWING
Introduces swing into the tempo.
GAUSS
Function for progressive acceleration or deceleration of time.
EUCLID
All Euclidean combinations can be used.
TILES
Distributes steps and rests by group.
POLYR
Polyrhythmic succession of steps.
JAZZY
Preestablished patterns.
SPIN
Rotation on the circle of matrix functions.
ROLL
Doubles or triples the steps with a regular or random interval.
PAUSE
Pauses each track individually.
RESET
Resets the playhead to the beginning of the circle.
SYS
Save, load, new, clock type, clock division.
Tech Specs
Width: 10 HP
Depth: 32 mm
Current Draw:
+12 V 200 mA
–12 V 0 mA
+5 V 0 mA
Power connector and Knurlies
2.31 FIRMWARE
work in progress...
2.2 FIRMWARE
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COMMENT APPRIVOISER SKIPPY 2.2
OLD FIRMWARE
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What's New in Version 2.32:
• Automatic Backup
All settings are saved when the module is turned off.
Skippy then restarts directly with these same active settings. However, it is possible to revert to the default configuration at startup with the NEW function or even return to the "factory settings" by pressing buttons 2 and 4 simultaneously at startup.
• New Patterns in JAZZY
We regularly add new patterns to JAZZY, based on your requests...
• New "polystep"
Input Clock It is added to the two existing clocks "poly" and "matrix".
It acts as a clock divider within the limits of time division possibilities (for example, the Gaussian function will always act progressively based on an average clock, as with the "poly" clock). Thus, it falls between "poly", which produces an average of the received beats (and for example, will not account for small variations like external swing), and "matrix", which strictly applies the received beats identically to all tracks.
"Polystep" will strictly use the beats from track 1 and adapt the timing of the other tracks according to their parameters.
The "polystep" and "matrix" clocks are only useful if you want to control Skippy with an external clock. Leave it on "poly" for internal use or to use Skippy's clock as the Master for your system (in fact, Skippy performs best in the GAUSS and POLYR functions with this clock selected).
• New TILES
We have added the following divisions: 2/1, 3/1, 3/2, 4/3.
• New ROLL Function
Beats can now be divided by two (2 "gates" instead of one) or by three (3 "gates" instead of one).
It is possible to choose a "roll" randomly: "1/??" and "2/??" add respectively 1 or 2 extra beats, randomly. You can also choose to add these "rolls" every 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 12, or 16 "steps". It is also possible to add a "roll" with each screen rotation. To synchronize the start of "rolls" on all tracks, use the Reset function (or with Skippy Live), otherwise, each "roll" starts when the option is set (for example, to avoid setting "rolls" per turn all at the same time).
The beat times of the "rolls" depend on the duration of each gate. It is therefore recommended to take a slightly longer gate for the effect to start being noticeable (from 6070 and up).
The new "proportional gate" function is also taken into account (thus divided by 2 or by 3).
• New Proportional GATE
The function that allows choosing the gate length for each track has been extended.
It is now possible to choose it in proportion to the existing time between two beats. This can be very useful for melodic sequences (with Zazou for example).
You can thus alternate between quarter notes and half notes, or eighth notes and whole notes, etc.
Each of Skippy's four tracks can have a different setting, including with variable time functions (GAUSS, POLYR…), which promises infinite explorations.
Access proportional gates by turning the encoder in GATE mode to the left: instead of stopping at 10 as in the previous version, the percentage of active gate time is displayed. You can choose the percentage in steps of 10, from 10% to 90%.
How to perform the update:
All commercially available modules come equipped with the latest update. However, for those who are using older modules, it is possible to do it yourself.
If you don't feel comfortable with this technical procedure, please send me an email (sav at kaona.fr), and we will find an exchange procedure.

Download the desired firmware version and decompress it to obtain a file ending with .hex.

Remove Skippy from its location and UNPLUG the power cable from the module.

Use the following method from your computer (Mac, Windows, Linux). You do not need to remove the controller card (Teensy) to perform this operation (you will need a USB/micro USB cable and to download an application). https://www.pjrc.com/teensy/loader.html When you connect Skippy to your computer, it is normal for it to start up as usual.

After applying the update method, Skippy will immediately restart and display "version 2.2" upon startup.

Disconnect the USB cable.

Make sure the SD card is still securely inserted.

Return the module to its location by reconnecting the power cable.
Version 2.21 Updates:
Version 2.2 Update
 The BPM range is now from 10 to 600.
 BPM change for a single track can now be done in realtime without interrupting other tracks.
 Two external clocks are available:
CLK Mode: The clock is calculated based on the average of the inputs, allowing adjustments of Skippy's polyrhythmic functions to the external world. The choice of multiplier applies to this clock. The Clock Out follows this clock.
MATRIX Mode: The clock is matrixbased and adjusts precisely to external pulses (enabling external swing or step advance, for example). Polyrhythmic functions in this case will be adjusted based on an average of the pulse rate. The Clock Out follows this clock. Multipliers do not apply to this clock.
Both clocks can also accept a Trigger or Gate signal.
 Enhanced Jazzy function: Added Bossa, Folk, Funk, Jazz patterns. The Begin and End functions now apply to the Jazzy function as well.
 Gaussian function can be overlaid on Jazzy, Euclid, and Tiles functions, allowing for progressive Euclidean rhythms, for example.