Nanoloop Mono

Quickstart Guide to Nanoloop Mono (1.0.5)
v.1.0 by EVYLZ & Croy Broodfood
made for the Squaresounds 2018 Nanoloop Mono workshop

Turn on your Gameboy with Mono cart inside

Hello® displays then Nanoloop Logo

Press START

Nanoloop Mono Loads

1. The Nanoloop interface

You can now see a grid of 4 x 4 squares. Depending on the speed that Nanoloop is set to, this grid of 4 x 4 could be used to sequence 4 beats. More detailed sequencing can be achieved by increasing the speed and programming 4 beats using 2 or 4 patterns. By default the pattern is automatically playing when Nanoloop starts.

The Letter in the top left hand corner indicates which of the 3 channels is selected. Nanoloop starts on the Rectangular Wave channel (R) by default.

The symbol in the top right hand corner indicates which parameter is being changed, musical note = (semitone & octave)

You can move around this grid using the D Pad and the highlighted square will change as you move, acting as a cursor to indicate where a note will be entered.

2. Entering notes

To enter a note on the grid use B and to cut a note that has been entered with all it’s parameters use A.
(keep in mind that using the A button to cut a note means that it will paste that same note the next time you use the B command)

To change the pitch of a note you have entered. Highlight the note, hold down B and press UP or DOWN.
A sharp will be displayed as a colon C: two dots next to the letter being C sharp.

To change the pitch of a note by an octave. Highlight the note, hold down B and press LEFT or RIGHT.

The octave is indicated by a small square aligned to the bottom of the selected block.

When the lowest possible octave is playing the small square will be aligned to the bottom left hand corner and the highest possible octave will show the small square in the bottom right hand corner.

3. Menu + Channel Selection

Press SELECT to enter MENU 1 which displays all the parameters for the channel you have currently have selected (which to begin with  is R).

Press B to return to the grid from the menu at any time to enter additional notes.Nanoloop mono has three channels  R (Rectangle) , C (Click) and N (Noise). While in MENU 1, press UP and DOWN to cycle between the three channels. The channel you have selected is displayed in the top left hand corner.

The current channel can be muted by pressing the start button. A muted channel will be indicated by an X next to the letter in the top left corner (this is useful for soloing etc).
MENU 1

The 5 symbols in MENU 1 are sound altering parameters

In order from left to right are
Envelope , Pitch, Modulation, Filter and Delay

Select your desired parameter and channel then press B to return to the grid.

Many of the channel parameters can be edited with the following inputs while in the grid

Hold B+ UP or DOWN
Hold B+ LEFT or RIGHT
Hold A+ UP or DOWN

Hold A+ LEFT or RIGHT
START (activates an alternate function)

Refer to the Nanoloop mono manual for a detailed guide on sound editing parameters

4. Utilities

Access MENU 2 by pressing select twice


From left to right

File menu, song editor, shift pattern, invert colour, tempo

Saving a pattern

Highlight the file menu and press b to enter the file grid, highlight a number

5. Make a quick pattern

Making a kick drum using the C channel (Click)

Select the C channel by pressing UP and DOWN when MENU 1 is selected and enter the grid by pressing B with the Envelope parameter selected. Enter a note on the first square

We will adjust the envelope by holding down B and pressing RIGHT to increase the decay. Then press select to move back to MENU 1 and press right twice so that the pitch bend parameter is highlighted. The press B to move back onto the grid and press B and UP to change the amount of pitch bend. Move the line to the left all the way to the top to increase the initial pitch. Press B and left to increase the speed of the bend to achieve a kick drum sound.
Press A to cut the note and press B to paste the note, we will paste the note on every 4th square.

Press SELECT to return to MENU 1 highlight the pitch parameter. We can adjust the pitch of all notes at the same time by holding B+ UP/DOWN while the pitch parameter is highlighted. Or adjust individual notes by entering the grid.

Creating percussion using the N channel (Noise)

Select the N channel by pressing UP and DOWN when MENU 1 is selected.

Enter the grid by pressing B with the Envelope parameter selected, enter a note on the first square and reduce the decay of that note by pressing B and LEFT.. This will achieve a closed hi hat sound, opening the envelope will give you an open hat/snare sound (experiment with lowering the pitch also). The N channel can also create tonal sounds, switching between noise and tone sounds can be achieved by pressing START on the note when the note parameter is selected. A small line will appear through the block at the bottom of the square, this block indicates the octave in a similar way to the R channel.

6. Using LFO and FM on the wave R channel

First, enter a note an the first square of the grid when the R channel is selected.

For a more obvious effect, lengthen the decay of the note by pressing select to jump to Menu 1 then selecting envelope by pressing left once. Then hold A and press Right to increase the decay on that note, the length of the note increases as shown by the square in the bottom left hand corner (the square in the top right represents the volume).

Staying in Menu 1, press right three times to move along to the FILTER parameter which looks like an arrow pointing down. Click B to jump back onto the grid and press START on the note you currently have selected to change the filter. An additional block will now appear. The outlined block represents the cut-off and the filled block represents the pulse width.

Then return to  Menu 1 by pressing B and move over to the Pitch Bend / Modulation parameter by pressing right once. Then move back onto the grid by pressing B. Hold down A and press UP. You will notice that the bars on the selected note change so that one appears with vertical lines through it. Now hold B and press UP to change the parameters. The bar on the left represents where the cut off starts and it’s distance to the bar on the right represents how quickly the cut-off changes from high to low. Hold down B and press LEFT to make the change from high to low frequencies shorter.

Now to edit the envelope for a different filtered effect, press B to move back onto the grid and then press START on the note you have selected. Now both of the lines representing the parameters will appear as though they have vertical lines through them. Hold down B and press LEFT and RIGHT to control the rate that the cutoff changes and use B and UP and DOWN to control the frequency. You can now return to the filter parameter and hear this filter change as you effect the whole pattern by holding down A and pressing UP and DOWN.

7. Using Detune, Intervals and Arpeggios on the R channel

With the pitch variable selected enter a note by pressing B then to detune that note hold down A and press RIGHT. The amount of detune will appear a block in the top left hand corner.

To create a two note interval enter a note using B then hold down A and press up, the amount of interval between to the notes will be displayed as a number (1 being 1 semitone)

To create and arpeggio enter a note using B then with the that note selected, press START to change from interval mode to arpeggio mode. Then in the same way that an interval was created, hold down A and press UP to change the key of the arpeggio. The speed of the arpeggio can be altered by holding down A and pressing LEFT and RIGHT, the speed is represented by a block starting in the top left hand side, the faster the arpeggio speed the closer the block is to the right hand side. For a more obvious effect, lengthen the decay of the note.