Michael Jan Releases FREE “Key Repeat” Sampler Instrument

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Michael Jan has released Key Repeat, a free (open-source) note repeat sampler instrument in VST3 and AU plugin formats for compatible DAW software on Windows and OS X.

Key Repeat is a simple beat repeat instrument. It can load any audio sample and play it repeatedly in sync with the host application’s tempo setting. The plugin features a simple ADSR envelope, adjustable humanize and swing parameters, as well as latch and triplet playback modes. The pitch, pan, and output volume adjustments are located in the upper-right corner of the user interface.

The user can adjust the repeat rate via MIDI. The plugin will sync to the host tempo automatically and the user can define the note repeat value via keyswitches. It is also possible to change the keyswitch octave, making Key Repeat compatible with any type of MIDI keyboard controller.

Key Repeat is a handy tool for generating repetitive rhythmic patterns. It is the perfect plugin for generating snare rolls, trap hi-hats, or glitchy stutter effects. Automating the pitch parameter will add even more interest to the generated percussion pattern. The plugin is easy to set up and it uses minimal CPU resources.

Key Repeat can be downloaded completely free of charge via Michael Jan’s website. No signup required. Simply extract the downloaded ZIP archive to your plugin folder. Only 64-bit host applications are supported. The source code is available on GitHub.

More info: Key Repeat (1.31 MB download size, ZIP archive, 64-bit VST3/AU plugin format for Windows & macOS)

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Tomislav is a content creator and sound designer from Belgrade, Serbia. He is also the founder and editor-in-chief here at Bedroom Producers Blog.

7 Comments

  1. Is there a demo video/clip for this plugin anywhere? I’d like to see what it’s purpose is. Or rather, why it would be preferable to use this dedicated plugin for the task of repeating a sample instead of just penciling in a repeated pattern in my DAWs playlist/piano roll? I’m not trying to be pessimistic, as I do appreciate plugin developers dedicating the time to create free tools for others to use. I’m just having a hard time seeing the practicality of this particular plugin.

    • As Tomislav said, it’s about the ease of use.

      Of course you can always use the mouse to paint in patterns, but tools that allow you to do things intuitively without too much mouse clicking will allow you to be more creative.

      This Beat Repeat thing is a famous trick that was used by any HipHop (and some other electronic genres) producers using the Akai MPC since the early 2000s. Actually, any good sampler plugin should have that option (typically they don’t, but dedicated beat production software like Maschine and the Akai MPC software has it).

    • Hey Trey! I did not make this plugin but I requested it and Michael made it for me (and everyone else!). I was specifically looking for a lightweight way to emulate the Note Repeat behavior of an MPC.

      If you head to Youtube and search “How to Pitch Hi Hats Trap Style (MPC X Tutorial)”, uploaded by Da Drank Kang (the url of the video I’m describing ends with “xRQ” but I don’t know if I can include links), you can see him perform this technique at 2:43. He’s holding the note to re-trigger the sound and using the division values to “play” the single sample live using MPC Software. I found that software to be clunky, especially as this was the only thing I used it for, so I got Michael to bring that functionality into Logic for me. Now I can drag-drop a hi-hat or snare sample and “play” the rolls live by manipulating the time division value (and pitch, by triggering the sample with other notes.)

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