To actually produce some sound you have to get the audio engine running: hit the Power button located on the left of the upper toolbar, and you should hear your sample playing back at normal speed. You can now use the Pan, Pitch, or Volume controls of the turntable, or you can adjust the master controls on the right side of the window. Adjusting the master controls affects all playing turntables.
Typically one turntable is not enough. terminatorX allows you to use as many turntables as your machine can handle (see Figure 2-15). You can add new turntables by selecting Turntables
Add Turntable from the menu. This creates a new turntable with its own control panel and audio panel. To save space, click on the Minimize button in the upper-right corner to minimize the panels, just like the
When you use your mouse for scratching, you cannot use it for operating the user interface at the same time. So in order to perform some scratching you have to activate the audio engine and enter the
One of your turntables should now be highlighted in scratch mode. This is the one that currently has the input focus. You can select other turntables by pressing the Tab key. With no keys pressed, the turntable keeps on spinning by the speed of its motor. When you hold the Space key or the left mouse button, it's like you're
There are more keyboard shortcuts in scratch mode, most importantly:
Both Alt and Ctrl allow you to mute the turntablesimilar to using a crossfader.
The F key enables scratching at warp speed, allowing you to quickly find a certain position in a large audio file.
The Esc key exits mouse grab mode, allowing regular use of the mouse again.
The speed of the turntable is not the only thing you can control with your mouseall sliders of a turntable can be mapped onto either the x axis (left to right) or the y axis (top to bottom) of your mouse. When you click on the Mouse button in a turntable's audio panel, you can configure the mappings.
On the bottom of a turntable's control panel you find the most important controls that are always visible: the Volume slider, the Pan and Pitch knobs, the Mute and Solo buttons, and a level indicator displaying the turntable's current signal. The knobs in terminatorX are quite easy to use: click on the knob you want to adjust and move the mouse in either a horizontal or vertical direction while keeping the mouse button pressed. When you find the setting of your choice, release the button.
Above the fixed controls you find a scrollable area that holds all other controls of a turntable grouped into sub-panels. A sub-panel can be minimized when it is not required (click on the button that holds the name of the panel). The Main panel allows you to give a turntable a more useful
The last two panels represent the effect queues of a turntable. At first the turntable signal is fed into the mono effect queue. The output signal of that first effect queue is then split into two channels and sent through the stereo effect queue.
While they are fun to play with, the two built-in effects are not the limits of the interesting sounds you can produce. terminatorX supports the LADSPA interface (http://www.ladspa.org) and loads all the effect plug-ins installed in the default LADSPA lib directories ( /usr/lib/ladspa or /usr/local/lib/ladspa ) that fit into the software automatically on startup. To add a mono effect, click on the FX button and select the effect of your choice from the menu. The effect will then appear in the queue just like the built-in effects.
The audio signal is fed top-down through the effect queue: the effect on top receives the original turntable output signal as input, and the effect below will use the upper effect's output signal as input, and so on. Obviously sequence matters here, which is why you can reorder the effects with the blue arrows below the effect's label. Click on the label itself to find out more about the plug-in. To remove an effect from the queue, just hit the small
button and it's gone (built-in effects cannot be removedjust disable them if you don't want them). Handling stereo effects works just the same way: create one by hitting the Stereo FX button and
I noted earlier that the echo signal is treated differentlyit is not fed into the next effect, instead it is mixed separately. That way you can have the echo signal use a different pan position than the original signal to add some room to your mix. You can also do weird stuff with this. For example if you put the Lowpass below the Echo you will find that the actual echo signal has no lowpass filtering applied to it in contrast to the original signal.
Once you have set up your turntables the way you want, you'll typically want to be able to save your setup so you can go back to it some other time. Select File
Save Set File to save and File
Open Set File to
Often you want to record the audio output of a terminatorX session: select Turntables Record Audio To Disk and choose the output file. TerminatorX will then record all audio generated from the next start (to stop) of the audio engine to a WAV audio file.
With multiple turntables in your setup, you might find that you don't have enough hands or mice available to modify all the knobs you want. This is where the sequencer comes into play. Using the sequencer, you can record all kinds of events, play them back and record additional ones. To record events, click the Record button to arm the sequencer and then the Play button. Now move some knob up and down or perform some scratching in mouse grab mode if you want. After you hit Stop and then Play again you will see (and hear) how terminatorX
terminatorX uses the popular touch-to-record approach: when you activate Record and then start sequencer playback all previously recorded events for each control will be played back until you "touch" a control by modifying it. As soon as a control is touched, old events are no longer
Sometimes you know you messed up before you hit the Stop button. In that case you might prefer to throw away the events recorded with such a take. When you activate Sequencer Confirm Recorded Events in the menu, terminatorX will ask you to confirm applying the recorded events after each take. The Sequencer menu will also allow you to delete events for a specific control (you can also right-click on the control to do so).
All the events you record are stored along with your set file so you can restore all your actions easily.
When you have access to some MIDI control hardware or want to use another application to control terminatorX, you can make use of the ALSA sequencer input port. First off, you have to "wire" the output port of your choice to terminatorX's Control Input port with a separate application like
, and so forth. The
Of course, all MIDI-related bindings, bounds and so forth are stored within the terminatorX set files as well.
Instead of sending the audio output straight to your sound card you can also use the integrated JACK backend and route terminatorX's audio signal through the applications of your choice, apply additional effects, and so on. A lot of users enjoy creating their own turntables for use with terminatorX. To find out more about those (there's a gallery of turntables at the web site) and new terminatorX releases check out the terminatorX website at http://terminatorX.org.