Firmware updates aren’t supposed to be something that gets talked about. But somehow, Novation’s actually generate some buzz. There’s a lesson here for the whole industry. Social media strategy could actually be part of the development process. (Your engineers are part of your PR?)

Anyway, the new Novation Circuit continues to get cooler.

And some new features I’ve been waiting for arrived – the ones that made me stick it back into my MIDI rig, where it’s been earning lots of attention with that friendly face. The big ones for me: drum pattern length (for polyrhythms) and instant pattern switch.


You can set the length of drum patterns individually, for variations or polyrhythms.


You can switch patterns instantly.


MIDI clock can now be switched on and off (both send and receive, individually). That’s significant, too, as some gear may not want to receive clock, etc.


Now you can change session color from the unit, too, not just from software.

Circuit Packs let you load whole sets of samples and patches and sessions at once. That’s really lovely – and yes, you can make your own. (I think I may get on that!)

I have to say, actually, I’m generally impressed by the growing refinement of the Web interface. It’s a whole lot more fun to work with.


That means my single biggest request is offline functionality. Login and online access just to use the Web interface is a big pain. I have been a couple of times in places where that wasn’t practical.

Still, I can’t complain about the pace of progress – which also suggests that, while I’m waiting on offline mode, online delivery and Web tech is a real win.

I’ll stop blabbing about the Circuit when it stops being interesting.