Maybe someone can point me to a resource or explain this to me in a way I can understand.

I've had nanoloop on various Android devices for something like 5 years now, currently 3.9.1.

I really like the 'right amount' of limitation on the program, and I can see it'd be genuinely useful to my work and play, but I've never really got over a problem in the main pattern editing window, and I'm not sure if I'm using it wrong or just not getting the paradigm. I've been using computers in music for coming up for 40 years, and maybe I'm just stuck in the wrong brain thinkings. Or just stupid.

In the main pattern editing window, as I understand it, the letters on the lower bit represent instruments, and the numbers 1-8 patterns (I've seen these referred to as channels, though I don't quite get why, maybe this is relevant).

I create (for example) 3 instruments, bass, lead and kick on a,b and c, all on pattern 1. Fine. I change to pattern 2, and create 3 different patterns using the same instruments. In my mind, it seems I should now be able to hit 1 and hear the first 3 patterns together (to me this is 'pattern 1'), hit 2 and hear the second pattern together, but it will only change the pattern of whatever instrument I've got selected, everything is instantly jumbled up and I have to select each instrument and pattern to get them all playing together again (it's like every time i want to hear a pattern I have to reassemble it, or program it into the song window), which seems madness and totally breaks up what should be a really fast workflow.

I just don't get how to work with it, get frustrated and end up ditching it for another year just because of this strange (to me) behaviour, then try 'one more time'...

What am I doing wrong or not understanding? Or is everything as it should be and I'm just not compatible?

Thanks in advance


Patterns (1-8, above the sequencer sguare) are separate for each channel (a-h, the bottom row). Changing the pattern only changes it for the current channel.


Yes, that's what I'm seeing. For instance, to just change/hear patterns (in the pattern editor window) for a 4 instrument pattern takes 7 key presses, one to change on the current channel, then each instrument in turn, letter and channel. It's like the pattern is there, but you have to reassemble it every time you want to change something (at least to do so and hear how the loop sounds together).


Is the issue maybe that I'm taking the term 'pattern' too literally, and that it's actually a looser concept in nanoloop? What I mean is, what I'm expecting is that each of the 8 patterns is a fixed and coherent chunk of music made up of a number of tracks, and when I edit a pattern I expect everything to line up by default (and not have to do up to 15 keypresses to swap between). In the song window you can obviously mix whatever patterns/channels you it the intention that a pattern isn't really meant to be a musical chunk and should be treated more as just a general collection of parts?

barmyfluid wrote:

is it the intention that a pattern isn't really meant to be a musical chunk and should be treated more as just a general collection of parts?

I'm not that we'll versed in composing but that's how I see it when using patterns - each "pattern" is a combination of parts from each instrument. The composition is only really "alive" in the song window in my view, though I think there may be space for other approaches (some types of live improv oriented compositions could alternatively be "alive" in the pattern window).

With the current system, there is the advantage of having more space to do subtle variations in each instrument individually, which I appreciate.
I might go as far as to say that the current system would encourage more subtle transitions one instrument at a time rather than all instruments changing at once. That's how it feels for me anyway.

Unrelated to Android, but nanoloop one (maybe nanoloop two as well?) for Gameboy has a pattern screen that allows you to switch the "pattern" of all channels at the same time (by pressing A and a directional key).

I hope you can find a way that works for you!


Any plans for nintendo switch version?


No. 3DS maybe.

oliver wrote:

No. 3DS maybe.

well now i'm curious


Nanoloop for 3ds? It could be really great!