If you’ve got Reaktor but haven’t had the chance to get deep into build your own instruments and effects, CDM forums contributor Peter Dines has some terrific resources for you. These should be particularly useful if you’re interested in building your own sequencers and such, which isn’t fully explained in the Reaktor docs.
Reaktor in Print
First, you should run to your local newsstand and see if you can catch the Aug/Sept issue of the new magazine Virtual Instruments; Peter wrote a great starter tutorial in there on clocks, tables, and sequencing. October’s issue should be out soon, but I still see VI at my local Wall Street Borders. (CDM’s own Lee Sherman also writes for VI.)
You can also buy a download-only subscription, handy not only for our overseas readers but those of us fighting a life-or-death battle with city-devouring stacks of paper magazines. (Some call it a clash of civilizations. I say it’s a battle for civilization.)
Online Tutorials and Files
It’s hard to fit a program the size of Reaktor into a book, let alone a magazine, so the better news is that Peter is continuing to post tips and tutorials online. He’s started up a new Reaktor blogspot blog, so head over there and encourage him. First up: PDF and ensemble on clock and modulo operations and building a sequencer to sync to host. (Get ready for Reaktor running inside Ableton Live, for some true computer music bliss.)
I was going to work some of this into the first chapter of a book – I still might – but decided I want to have this info freely available. That way people who want to write tutorials or instructional material on Reaktor don’t have to keep reinventing the wheel to teach the basics.
Comments and questions are welcome. If you already know this stuff, keep an eye out anyways because I’m writing some more advanced tutorials and will be posting them in the coming weeks.
The tutorial is written with the expectation that the user will have at least some nodding acquaintance with the program, has done the very simple build-a-synth tutorial in the manual, and has already configured his audio out and so forth.
There hasn’t been a book on Reaktor since Len Sasso’s reaktor 3 book, which was good but is now clearly well outdated. I hope ebooks and online information will fill the gap, because they’re more easily updated and better-suited to marketing to the niche audience of Reaktor users. Stay tuned.
More discussion on learning Reaktor with Peter and others on the forums:
Head count – Reaktor users?
And, as pictured at top, Peter offers another ensemble via the NI forums:
Phun with polyphony
… offering a different take on polyphonic synths using separate channels for data.
Okay, other Reaktor users: tips or questions about using Reaktor? Favorite user ensembles? The NI forums are vast and wonderful, but it’s nice to get the more-manageable CDM reader take on Reaktor.