Go to: 01 On-Line Directory Book Info

01/W Sequencer Mode

rev: 2015 May 06

Sequencer Memory Capacity

01s without a floppy can hold 7,000 "steps" (MIDI events).

01s with a floppy can hold 48,000 steps BUT there is a 16,000-step limit for a single track or pattern.

You can see how much memory is available by playing a sequence and looking at the top line, right side of Page 0.

A PROG/SEQ DATA card can hold 7,000 steps. An 01 with a floppy must show "86% Free" or higher for that sequence to fit on a DATA card.

Sequencer Mode Pages - Overview

Sequencer Mode uses all ten pages. They are:

Page 0 
Track 1-8: Program/Volume/Pan 
Track 1-8: Mute/Record/Play 
Track 9-16: Program/Volume/Pan 
Track 9-16: Mute/Record/Play 
Song #, Track #, Real Time Record/Play


Page 1 
Track 1-8
Page 2 
Track 9-16
Page 3 
Ch/Window 1-8
Page 4 
Ch/Window 9-16
Track Status (MIDI Output) 
Track Protect 
MIDI Channel 
Velocity, top 
Velocity, bottom 
Key, top 
Key, bottom


Page 5 
Edit Song
Page 6 
Edit Measure
Page 7  
Edit Pattern
Step Recording 
Create Control Data 
Event Edit 
Erase Track 
Bounce Track 
Copy Track 
Erase Song 
Append Song
Shift note 
Modify Velocity 
Delete Measure 
Erase Measure 
Copy Measure 
Insert Measure 
Put/Copy Pattern
Real Time Record 
Step Recording 
Event Edit 
Pattern Parameter 
Erase Pattern 
Get from Track 
Bounce Pattern 
Copy Pattern


Page 8 
Page 9 
Effects Placement 
Output 3 Pan 
Output 4 Pan
Next Song 
Rename Song 
Copy Effects All 
Copy/Swap FX 
Copy from Combination 
Base Resolution

Sequencer Page Displays

Page 1 
Track Parameters 1-8
Page 2 
Track Parameters 9-16
1 Trk 1/9 Trk 2/10 Trk 3/11 Trk 4/12 Trk 5/13 Trk 6/14 Trk 7/15 Trk 8/16
3 Track Status
4 Protect
5 Transpose
6 Detune

Track Status (OFF, INT, EXT, BOTH)
When the sequencer plays back the data it recorded, where do you want the data to go? The data was recorded as standard MIDI messages, so we have a couple of options:

BOTH (Value slider all the way up). Stored MIDI data goes to both MIDI Out and the internal Sound Module. This is the power-on default.

EXTernal (Value down one from top). Stored sequencer MIDI data is sent to MIDI Out only. With no connection to the 01/W Sound Module, you will hear nothing from your 01. This option is used if you have a different Sound Module you want to use in place of the 01's.

INTernal (Value up one from bottom). MIDI data is routed internally to the 01/W Sound Module. This is the same as plugging a cable from MIDI Out to MIDI In and selecting External.

OFF (Value slider all the way down): The data goes nowhere. You will hear nothing.


Values Default Power Off Reset
OFF, ON OFF default default

ON (Value Up): Won't let you change Track settings or record data.

OFF (Value Down): Permits changes to be made to this Track's settings and/or data.

Transpose (-24 thru +24 half-steps/chromatic steps)
This setting is for the internal Sound Module and has no effect on MIDI Out data.

Detune (-50 thru +50 cents)
This setting is for the internal Sound Module and has no effect on MIDI Out data.

Page 3 
Channel/Window 1-8
Page 4 
Channel/Window 9-16
1 Trk 1/9 Trk 2/10 Trk 3/11 Trk 4/12 Trk 5/13 Trk 6/14 Trk 7/15 Trk 8/16
2 MIDI Channel
3 Velocity Window, Top
4 Velocity Window, Bottom
5 Key Window, Top
6 Key Window, Bottom
MIDI Channel (1 - 16)
("G" after a channel number indicates the Global channel, which is set on GLOBAL Page 0, Line 3.)
Each track can send its data on any of 16 MIDI channels. Here is where you set which channel a track will "play" (send MIDI data) on. When you power-up your 01, Channel numbers are assigned to match Track numbers (Track 1 sends on Channel 1, Track on Channel 2, etc.).

When You Play the Keyboard...
the Track you selected on Page 0 (Line 6, "Tr--") will be heard. That Track has a Channel number. All tracks having that same Channel number will be heard also. That is, you can play multiple Tracks at the same time by setting all those Tracks to the same Channel number.

Also, if you set Page 0, Line 6, "Tr" to "MULT", all Tracks set to the Global Channel will sound when you play the keyboard.

For sequencing, this means that you can have multiple instruments playing the same data without entering that data into the other tracks. Record your data into one Track, then assign your other Tracks (with different Programs) to the same Channel as the Track with the data.

Velocity Window (1 - 127)
You can filter the data sent to the Sound Module so that only certain velocities are sent. For example, if you only want keys that were struck hard to be sent to a Timpani track, you might set the bottom of the window to "90" while leaving the top at "127". Now, only notes with a velocity of 90-127 will sound, while notes with a velocity of 0 - 89 will be silent.

The Window can be used during recording or playback. Data already recorded is not altered.

Key Window (C-1 thru G9)
You can filter the data sent to the Sound Module so that only certain notes are sent. For example, if you only want low notes to be sent to a bass guitar track, you might set the bottom of the window to "C-1" while setting the top at "C4". Now, only bass-cleft will sound, while higher notes will be silent.

The Window can be used during recording or playback. Data already recorded is not altered.

Comments on Windows

You can "layer" and "split" sequences much like Combinations by using Windows. That is, the same data can be sent to different instruments, but only the windowed instruments will sound at the appropriate time.

What's a Sequencer?

A sequencer is an electronic stenographer (secretary). To record, you first press REC to alert the steno to grab a pencil and paper. When you push START, you start a digital stopwatch that the steno watches while you play the keyboard. Every time you push a key, the steno writes "Note On", followed by the name of the key and the time on the stopwatch. Every time you release a key, the steno writes "Note Off", followed by the name of the key you released and the time. This continues until you press the STOP button.

To hear what you just recorded, you RESET the clock back to zero, then press START. This time the steno reads back (plays on the keyboard) what was written.

This concept is not new. If you ever see a player-piano, take a look at the paper piano-roll. Wherever a hole is punched in the paper, that's where a key gets pushed ("Note On"). This is so like a sequencer that sequencer programs that run on your personal computer let you look at your sequences in "piano-roll" views, which look very much like player-piano rolls.

You can see the actual writings of the electronic steno by going to Sequencer Mode Page 5, line 3, column A-D.

Sequencers can record more than music data (which note turned on/off when). They can also record "control data", which is when switches open and close (like a damper/sustain pedal), or when a joystick is moved.

After all these "events" are recorded by the sequencer, you can go back and edit them. You can erase bad notes, insert extra notes, or shift a note to occur earlier or later. You can also edit Control Data. By the time you're done editing, the performance will be as perfect as you care to make it.

Introduction to Sequencing Tutorial - Not?

A tutorial, "The Korg 01 Integrated Sequencer", written by Dr. Reginald Bain of the University of South Carolina used to be online back in 1998. Dr. Bain still has a website at the University but I don't see the tutorial obviously listed. I don't know if it is archived anywhere. [15May05]

Demo Sequences

Korg provided demonstration sequences with the 01. 01s without a floppy drive had demos stored in ROM. For 01s with a floppy drive, a demo disk came with the unit. Early 01s with a floppy are reported to have the Demo sequence. ROM #35 is said to have the Demo sequences.

01/W without a floppy drive

Most 01s without a floppy drive have demonstration sequences stored in ROM.  If you re-initialize and re-load your 01, the demo Songs should appear in the sequencer.

There may be a Load Demo ("Preset Demo Song") option on Global Mode Page 7 - I'm not sure. If someone with the Load Demo option can e-mail me, I'll update this section. Note that if you currently have the Load Demo option, you will probably lose them if you upgrade to ROM #62. That is, you will no longer have the Global Mode Page 7 option "Preset Demo Song".

The sequences may include one called "Radio Zap". If your 01/W has the factory names for the Demo Songs, e-mail me and I'll include the list here.

Erasing Demo Sequences

(Done to free-up sequencer memory)

When demo sequences/Songs are loaded in the sequencer, they take up valuable memory space that you may need for your own sequences. You erase Songs by erasing the Tracks AND Patterns. (If you erase only the Tracks you will see 69% memory free, a clue the Patterns are still in memory.)

To erase Songs you must first unprotect the Songs, Tracks, and Patterns in a few places:

To unprotect the sequence:

  1. Go to GLOBAL Mode, Page 4:Protect
  2. Check the bottom line and see if "Seq:" is OFF or ON.
  3. If "Seq:" is ON, turn it off.

To unprotect the track:

  1. Go to SEQ Mode.
  2. On Page 1 and 2, Line 4 is used to prevent tracks from being erased.
  3. If any are set to "ON", turn them "OFF" one by one.

To Erase a Song:

  1. Go to SEQ Mode, Page 0
  2. On Line 6 (bottom line), highlight the song number (SNG) and select the demo song you want to delete.
  3. Go to Page 5
  4. Highlight Line 3 in the right column: Erase Song
  5. Press the G button

To Erase the Patterns:

  1. Go to Sequencer Mode, Page 7, Line 1, "Erase Pattern"
  2. Erase one Pattern at a time until the Demo Patterns are all erased.

01/W Demo Floppy

The demo Songs are on a floppy disk (XSD-00P) that you "Load All Data" from. The sequences are:

Sequences on 01/Wfd demo floppy
0 70mmFilm 2 The Phantom 4 Arabesque 6 TooMuchSax 8 Rock Show!
1 ButIsItArt 3 LateNiteTV 5 For Fujimi 7 WKRG Radio 9 (blank)

Korg also had a promotional CD with 01 demonstrations on it, but I don't think there was any way you could load them into your 01.

Quantizing Theory

Based on the word "quantum", which loosely means packets – things occur in fixed quantities. In simple music, all notes occur on the beat. If you "quantize to quarter notes", then all notes are adjusted to be on the nearest quarter note. If you happen to hit a note a little before or after the beat, the 01 will change the time to be exactly on the nearest quarter note.

A conceptual perspective: By it's very nature, a sequencer imposes a grid on measures. This grid consists of intersecting horizontal and vertical lines. Horizontal lines indicate frequency (pitch) - notes on different horizontal lines have a different pitch. Vertical lines indicate time - notes on the left happen earlier than notes on the right.

Horizontal lines are literally drawn on paper as staves. The vertical lines are implied by the way we draw the note (quarter, 8th, 16th, 32nd). Notes (and all MIDI events) can only happen where a horizontal and vertical line intersect.

Quantizing is changing the spacing of vertical lines. If you have four lines per measure, you are quantizing to quarter-notes. If you have eight lines per measure, you are quantizing to 8th-notes. High-resolution means more lines per measure, which means finer timing. Songs quantized to quarter-notes sound simple and choppy. Quantizing to 16th or even 32nds sound more natural, but still a bit mechanical. Pure natural performance has no quantizing applied.

Quantization is only done in SEQ Mode, and only for the following actions:

Action SEQ Mode
Real-Time Recording of Sequences Page 0, line 6, column C
Real-Time Recording of Patterns Page 7, line 1, column A
Edit Measure Page 6, line 1, column A

The possible values for quantizing are:

quarter-note, 8th, 8th-note-triplet, 16th note, 16th note triplet, 32-nd note, 32-note triplet, and HI.

The value for HI depends on the Base Resolution setting.

If the Base Resolution is "low", then HI = 48 ticks per quarter-note.

If the Base Resolution is "high", then HI = 96 ticks per quarter-note.

In both cases, quantizing on HI will move the event to the nearest tick.

Direct Entry in the Quantization Field

The quantization value can be entered using the VALUE Slider/Buttons or Direct Entry. For Direct Entry, press and hold the letter button below the Quantization field while using the numeric pad to enter the numbers shown in the table below:

Direct Entry # 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7, 8, 9
Quantize to: HI 32nd

Author's Comments

I Recommend a Computer-Based Sequencer

If you have a personal computer, you should be using MIDI to talk to your 01. The 01's sequencer is great for capturing ideas when you are away from your computer, but it's much more difficult to use than today's computer-based sequencers. I highly recommend moving to a computer-based sequencer if it's at all possible. Song writing can be a tedious business, and you need all the help you can get. On-screen editing of sequences is wonderful. However, if you must use the 01 sequencer, I hope these notes make life a little easier.

I Recommend Trying Step Recording

At the risk of slowing whatever search you're on, I'd like to recommend that you try Step Recording a musical score some time. There are several music books of "transcribed scores" that have detailed music for every instrument used in a song. Bands include Steely Dan, Led Zeppelin, Hendrix, even The Beatles Complete Scores. Many of these are remarkably accurate, and when you play the sequence back, it's much like playing the CD without the vocals. Not only do you learn to read music better, you learn different ways to play the instruments. It's very tedious at first – it could take days to finish entering the entire score - but it can be fun and rewarding. Look for your favorite song as a "transcribed score" and give it a try.

Copyright ©1998-2003, 2015 by Ken Westover at Cliff Canyon Publishing Co. All rights reserved.
This material may not be distributed without the written permission of the author.
  E-mail questions or comments to cliffcan@indra.com.
Go to: 01 On-Line Directory Book Info Top of this page.