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ButtSeqs - 2020

The ButtSeqs Button Sequencer is an ongoing project to make pattern-based sequencing as fully featured as using a DAW. The emphasis is on real time use and improvisation rather than simply pattern switching or playing an arrangement.

The paradigm is based upon modes. Each set of button's functions depend on the the mode. For example, the step keys may, in some modes, select each track and the note keys might add a note or select a menu item. These are programmed into the interactive help screens for each mode. This gives more flexibility than dedicated buttons.

We have focussed on the rule of squares and every buttons set has a square number of buttons, all adding up to 81.


  • Select multiple steps at once for processing or note entry.
  • Arrange mode - See a visual representation of tracks and changes - sit back and let the sequencer play itself
  • Process mode - Appply a chain of non-destructive processes like mutate and shuffle to each pattern.
  • Mute mode - Appply a chain of non-destructive processes like mutate and shuffle to each pattern.
  • Many more - Batch process, note-based / track-based mutes, live LFO mode.
  • Expansion port for CV expander / drum machine / bassline synthesiser


Buttseqs runs on a Teensy 3.6. Auxillary functions that could block playback such as driving the 0.5K colour screen and interfacing with the SD card are delegated to an ESP32 over a serial connection. The majority of the data is stored in blocks on an external 2MB ram chip. The block-based system has space for approximately 59,000 blocks. Each pattern uses one block, and a step containing notes takes, on average, 2 blocks.


Number of tracks16
Connectivity5 MIDI-DIN out, 3 MIDI-DIN in, USB MIDI
JitterLess than 0.5ms has been achieved in testing
Number of buttons81
Maximum pattern length256 steps - each divided into 16 substeps
PPQN48 - Low to simplify note entry

Important Information

This product is not final and specification and features are subject to change.

DR-110 Connector Mod connected to DR-110 What is included What is included The connector on the DR-110 PCB view 1 PCB view 2

DR-110 MIDI Mod - EOL

This mod brings the DR110 into the modern age (2018) with note triggering via MIDI, individual velocity sensitivity and a few variations on the original sounds. It does not support synchronisation of the DR110's internal clock to MIDI.

This is a kit for the mod itself and also the connection needed to connect it to the DR-110. The tools required to install this are a screwdriver, soldering iron and a drill and file/rotary tool to make a slot in the case.

The cost of the unit is £40 + postage costs and is available for purchase on eBay.

Purchase Kit

This is only designed with the DR-110 in mind and will probably not work with other drum machines. It may work to some extent if they use negative triggers, but that cannot be guaranteed.

This product is nearing end of life and will be made open source in accordance with our content sharing policies.


  • Per-instrument velocity sensitivity
  • Additional sounds (click to play):
    • Weak Clap
    • Rimshot
    • Snare Noise*
    • Hat Noise*
    • Cymbal Noise*
    • Clap Noise*
    • *Plays until noteOff without velocity sensitivity
  • Channel assignable by internal switch or CC
  • Customisable note-mapping
  • Simple user installation


Demo Track: Each sound with different velocities: A pattern playing with different velocities: