MacAtar Movie


(click the image to watch the movie)

This is a short movie of myself playing my Mac/Atari setup. Holding the camera with one hand and watching what I was filming while trying to do something musically worthwhile was not easy even though this is a simple example.

You can see my
Mac/Atari tutorial for technical details.

Here I will explain what is going on:

00:00 I start with a drum loop recorded on the Mac and the Atari synced to it but with all tracks muted. The sequencer on the Mac is “Logic 9” and on the Atari is “Realtime” .

00:37 I unmute the bass track on the Atari that sends data to “Camel Audio Alchemy” (a soft synth on the Mac).

All tracks are retuned to Carlos Alpha tuning system.

You can notice that, although the notes on that track are only two, you hear other ones due to Realtime’s algorithmic capabilities.

00:55 A second track is unmuted. Again played by Alchemy. Notes on this track are randomly chosen from a previously programmed look-up table (shown as S*).

01:10 The third track of this two-bars long pattern is unmuted. This one is played by “Ultrabeat” a virtual drum machine on the Mac. Here too notes come from a previously programmed look-up table.

01:20 You can see from the Mac screen that those tracks are playing something even though they are all empty (because they are receiving data from the Atari).

01:33 This is the Logic’s Environment page where the data flow is programmed:


data from the Atari come from port 7 of the MIDI/USB interface. Incoming data are sent to the sequencer input and to a channel splitter so that data on channels 1, 2 and 3 are sent to three instances of Alchemy (bass, synth and trumpet) and those on channel 16 to Ultrabeat (drums).

02:14 I unmute a track on the Mac playing a previously recorded trumpet part.

02:48 I select a second two-bars long pattern on the Atari. This one plays a simple trumpet part with notes coming again from a previously programmed look-up table. You can see that notes on a track can include specific pitches plus other notes coming from look-up tables.

03:34 Again I unmute a short trumpet part on the Mac.

03:53 I go from pattern A to pattern B on the Atari.

04:20 I edit some algorithmic parameters.

05:50 I show how to change patterns pressing keys on the Atari keyboard.

This is only a simple example but I hope I have been able to convey the potentiality of such a setup.