MapLooper: Live-looping of distributed gesture-to-sound mappings



John Sullivan

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Christian Frisson, Mathias Bredholt, Joseph Malloch, Marcelo M. Wanderley

Publication or Conference Title:

Proceedings of the 2021 International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression (NIME 2021)


This paper presents the development of a live-looping system for gesture-to-sound mappings. We first reviewed loop-based Digital Musical Instruments (DMIs). We then developed a connectivity infrastructure for wireless embedded musical instruments with distributed mapping and synchronization. We evaluated our infrastructure in the context of the real-time constraints of music performance. We measured a round-trip latency of 4.81 ms when mapping signals at 100 Hz with embedded libmapper and an average inter-onset delay of 3.03 ms for synchronizing with Ableton Link. On top of this infrastructure, we developed MapLooper: a live-looping tool with 2 example musical applications: a harp synthesizer with SuperCollider and embedded source-filter synthesis with FAUST on ESP32. Our system is based on a novel approach to mapping, extrapolating from using FIR and IIR filters on gestural data to using delay-lines as part of the mapping of DMIs. Our system features rhythmic time quantization and a flexible loop manipulation system for creative musical exploration. We open-source all of our components.

Publication Details:

Conference Paper
Shanghai, China

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