Critter and Guitari Organelle

I love my Organelles - just did a quick vid on the new Organelle-M


I know you were focused on the new features that differentiate M from the original, but I think the OP-1 question missed an important advantage Organelle holds over that, in supporting expressive controllers. Or even external controllers that aren’t so expressive.

OP-1 isn’t a USB host. Connecting to MIDI controllers requires plugging the OP-1 into a USB host.

Not only does Organelle not require that, it can be the USB host that OP-1 requires.

…while simultaneously providing additional voices and fx.

(As with most things, “either/or” isn’t so interesting as “both”)

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yeah, totally agree… but only so much you can do in one video…
(I was already torn between should it be focused on current organelle users, or those new to the organelle)

… that said, I will be doing lots with expressive controllers and organelle-m, those extra cores really help me out on the eigenharp/soundplane side :slight_smile:


I am simultaneously glad to hear that, and sad that I can’t afford an M just now.

That said, my immediate plans for the Organelle are largely “glorified midi hub”, so I don’t really need the CPU or RAM. Or the speaker.

Those TRS MIDI ports might be handy, though.

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Excellent video! I’ve always struggled a bit to fully «grasp» the Organelle. One moment I’m thinking I got to get one, and then 5 minutes later I’m thinking it is just a big Raspberry Pi with extra IO I don’t need. I like how you manage to explain why this is not the case. Some gear is fun and inspiring, some is not, and one cannot judge these things from specs.

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The Organelle-M is like a Raspberry Pi 3 internally, right? So - has anybody tried to run Pianoteq on it?
With a MIDI cable or Bluetooth this could be a fitting battery powered “mobile-brain” with speaker and (not to underestimate) low latency option for getting sound out of MIDI keyboards.
If bluetooth+pianoteq work this could be interesting e.g. for users of the Roli Lumi keyboard modules - 6400 potential owners and counting :slight_smile: I am pretty sure the piano sounds in their App cannot compete with Pianoteq - and I fear latency on usual Android phones might still be far from optimal…

In contrast to a phone, the Organelle-M also comes with pedal jacks. (I still don’t get how they can build a keyboard without any pedal support. Immediately rules out a lot of the of the existing piano literature…)

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Organelle-M uses a CM3 (so yup same main board as rPI3), but also has a proper codec (aka sound card).

note: the CM3 does not include surrounding hardware, so no built-in wifi, or BT (afaik)

pianoteq - yeah I never got around to testing this on the rPI3, as many reported disappointing results, and I’d reached my activation limit… though I could test with a trial I guess.
… that said, Ive not looked to see if pianoteq have tried to improve performance, as I checked a long time ago.

for sure, it would be fun with a lumi keyboard via usb.
(pedal input would required a little app, as it outputs OSC on the organelle, so a small conversion to midi is required for pianoteq)

hmm, will have a look to see what pianoteq users are saying about rPI support, see if its worth investigating.

(organelle-m is using raspbian, so its going to be an easy install)

what my also be interesting to try, if performance is not good enough on rPI3, is on the new rPI4.
(which is compatible with pisound!)

Ok, couldn’t resist the urge to try :slight_smile:

so yeah, pianoteq seems to work quite nicely on the organelle-m… just download, unzip, and run :slight_smile:
i used default settings, which is 44.1k SR, 512 buffer - didn’t seem to have any audio issues as far as i could tell - and fun to have a steinway to play on such a small device !
I didnt do anything like overclocking etc , and got a performance index of 10.

I used my Virus as a midi controller, Im waiting on a couple of Lumi for something more portable!.

to just get running, I just started the normal pianoteq app from X,
but I noticed it had an LV2 plugin, so im wondering if that might be a route to a headless form, perhaps using pure data as a container - and then putting some parameters onto the organelle display.
(e.g. to change presets)

its fairly simple to add an ‘app’ to the organelle menu, so starting it without a screen/mouse is easy enough.


Nice, having a standalone “pianoteq box” is a really great extra usecase!
Btw.: If you ask the Pianoteq guys nicely chances are good that they might allow a fourth activation slot :wink:

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yeah, this is becoming more interesting, as Im setting it up the organelle-m for the Eigenharps… so then pianoteq becomes useful.
(until I get lumi, Ive only my Virus and Pyramid as midi controllers - the former is not portable, the latter not a great keyboard :wink: )

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Vaguely off topic, but I suppose it’s testable on Organelle M…

I had a Pianoteq demo at one point that I was pleased to note respected multichannel input, complete with bend-per-channel.

I emailed Roger Linn, thinking “it’s not full MPE, but this is definitely something that Linnstrument users could benefit from”. He wasn’t particularly interested, but also, couldn’t replicate my findings.

So, I downloaded a newer demo, and that feature was gone.

I think what happened is, someone probably defeated the demo’s limitation of certain notes being disabled, by reaching for an adjacent note and bending to match. Which would take multichannel input to do right.

I guess my question is whether the full version still supports that, or if it’s been disabled for everyone.

(Won’t be an issue for Lumi, as you say. But I was enjoying the bendy piano strings, while I had 'em)

Also, this reminds me:

  1. I need to check on pi 4 compatibility again, with both them and Blokas. (The forums were very “wait-and-see” last time I looked)

  2. I need to check on my pi 4 order. It didn’t say backordered, but time just keeps passing…

Looks like some Surge devs are working on making it run headless on ARM, btw. I haven’t actually used it, but from just skimming the manual it looks very capable. MPE and bi-timbral. I don’t know what it would take to get something like this running on an Organelle-M even if an ARM build materializes. Just looked like something you’d find interesting.


works fine for me on the latest version 6.5.3 (standard)

oh, also found that on the arm version, you can add the option --headless to get it started.
so I think all thats needed is:

a) install, and initially set it up…midi controller/soundcard
b) assign presets to program change msgs, or a CC for instrument?
(so we can switch instruments/presets without a GUI)
c) run with --headless

what I could also do is create a MEC device for the organelle, such that the keyboard and pedal outputs midi… (simple OSC to midi converter for that!) , but perhaps I could even make it so the display is supported with pages of CCs
that way the organelles keyboard could, at a pinch, be used to play - or better still used as a quick way to select presets/change settings when using an external keyboard (like the lumi)

cool, it’ll be interesting to see how they do… is there enough performance on the rPI?

sure, once its on the rPI it’ll be simple enough to move to the organelle-m,
and similar to pianoteq ideas above, put some kind of UI on it to make it useful without a full display.

(I hope they implement it as a lv2 plugin thats the approach that makes the most sense to me)


That would be ideal.

So, then, the big obvious question:

Would it make sense to implement this as an Orac module (so, Pianoteq can be sequenced, recorded, played through fx, etc) or is that, realistically, too big a drain on the CPU?

(My guess is that it can work, but not at default quality settings)

And even further off topic…
I’m wondering if I can install it on Percussa SSP.
(My guess there would be “technically yes, but configuring presets wouldn’t be worth the considerable effort”)

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you could run the LV2 as a pure data patch, and potentially in Orac

BUT… given Pianoteq is pushing the PI to the limit, its probably not worth it… as you wont have any spare resources for other modules.

Percussa SSP - it’ll depend most likely on library dependancies - if SSP is using different versions of underlying libraries, then no its not going to work (and its not open source so you can’t just recompile it, which would be the normal solution)

(works on organelle-m, because its based on raspbian like the rPI thats pianoteq are using)

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Worth mentioning, in light of the web client:

…that there are cheap tablets available right now for anyone with Amazon Prime.

($30 for the 7", $50 for two of it)


organelle-m get the loopop treatment - will he like it?


Nice Loopop video. I think I am starting to understand :open_mouth:

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Oh yes he does :wink: and in love with orac…
Just dido from me.