SWAT : Swiss Army Tool, by TheTecnobear

swat - swiss army tool

swat is designed to be like the famous swiss army knife, a useful utility to bring out to solve your problems.

Download : https://bit.ly/2JgSIrW

Change Log

1.3.1 release, re-write using new infra and ui - more details
1.3.0 pre-release

1.0.1 Adjust for pitch cv changes
1.0.0 Initial Release

Developer: TheTechnobear

I develop these plugins for free, please consider supporting my efforts with a donation.

General Usage

The goal of SWAT is pretty open ended, its designed to be a plugin that I can extend quickly and easily.
It’s inspired by Expert Sleepers Disting (but shares no code etc…)

The plugin can run a variety of algorithms, that can do a variety of (unrelated) functions.

The ‘interface’ into swat is the same for all algos - each has 3 inputs X, Y and Z, and has 2 outputs A and B.
(This is fixed and cannot change!)

I aim to use thee as follows…


X - primary input signal
Y - secondardy modifier signal
Z - third input, often a gate or trigger


A - main output
B - alternative output (often, will be inverse of A, depending on algo)

however, the specific meaning of each parameter is particular to each algo.

important notes

  • most algos may be designed to work at audio rate.
  • different algos will have different computational costs
  • many inputs are optional, and have ‘sensible’ defaults (particularly y and x)
  • check inputs… they aim to be consistent
  • unconnected outputs will usually result in less cpu (dependent on algo)
  • input gates are considered high > 0.5
  • output gates are 0.0 low, 1.0 high (note: unipolar! )

note on signals levels

Theoretically, on the SSP , we have -5v to +5v currently -1.0 to 1.0f, where A4 = 440 hZ = 0v. where an octave = 0.2.
however, CV inputs are currently NOT calibrated to this theoretical values.
instead A4 = 0.02325f, and an octave is approximately 0.18837.

Usually, the user does not need to know/care about this, as all pitch voltages take this into account.
however, when mapping or using external voltages this can become important.
all SWAT algorithms that explicitly deal with notes/pitch take this into account.



No Outputs

Displays X, Y, Z inputs as float, voltages and note values

I use mainly to be able to see note values (including cents)

Min Max

A = min(X,Y)
B = max(X,Y)
Z gate

Returns min and max signals

Z acts a kind of sample n’ hold, also only using calculating min/max when high.


A = Z > 1 , X else Y
B = Z > 1 , Y else X

outputs flip between X, Y depending n Z

Handy simple switch alternative to MSW8


A = X + Note A
B = Y + Note B

Transposes pitch CV.
A0 = zero transpose, A#4 = +1 semi , A1 = +1 Octave etc.

if X is disconnected, its defaults to 0v , so A = Note A as v/oct


A = gate X > Y
B = ! A
Z Hysterisis

Returns a gate where X > Y
Hysterisis is useful X might be fluctuating slightly.

Windowed Comparator

A = gate X > (L-Y) & X < (H+Y)
B = ! A
Z Hysterisis

Returns gate high when X is between low and high.
Y acts as a ‘spread’ to low/high
Hysterisis is useful X might be fluctuating slightly.

if you set low/high to the same value (e.g zero), you can use Y to modulate around this.
low and high set to same value plus hysterisis allow detection of a particular value (with voltage/float imprecision accounted for)

Note Comparator

A = gate (X > L & X < H ) && Y
B = ! A
Z Hysteresis

Returns gate high when X is between low and high notes
Hysteresis is useful X might be fluctuating slightly.

Z is used to allow a bit of quantization around note values.
Low and High the same can detect a particular note
e.g. to trig a particular sample on SAM from a given note!

Logic - And

B = ! (X AND Y)
Z is gate

result is X AND Y , where high = 0.5
Z acts as a sample and hold

Logic - Or

A = X OR Y
B = ! (X OR Y)
Z is gate

result is X OR Y , where high = 0.5
Z acts as a sample and hold

Logic - Xor

B = ! (X XOR Y)
Z is gate

result is X exclusive OR Y where high = 0.5
Z acts as a sample and hold

XOR = X or Y NOT both !

Map Value to Value

A = X : in range to out range
B = Y : in range to out range

Map an input range to an output range.
output values are clipped to min/max out.

many usages e.g. converting unipolar to bipolar.
by making output min > max, you can invert ranges!

note: often you can do the same/similar by using the SSP scale and offset features.

Map Note to Value

A = X : in range to out range
B = Y : in range to out range

Map an input range of pitch CV to an output range.
Similar to Map Value to Value, however, this algo takes ito account how pitch is represented and convert to a numeric range.

this is useful when we want to convert a pitch cv into a modulation signal - mapping a midi keyboard octave to a range
e.g C4 - C5 -> -1.0 to +1.0 for start position of a sample or granular buffer

Map Note to Note

A = X : in range to out range
B = Y : in range to out range
Similar to Map Value to Value, however, this algo takes ito account how pitch is represented and convert to a new pitch.
This could be seen as a kind of transposition, however, it will not only offset the pitch, it will also scale or invert.


A = A + -0.5>X<0.5
B = B + -0.5>Y<0.5
Z = reset

A simple counter that increase by step amount when X/Y exceeds 0.5
however, X/Y are treated as bipolar
so X > 0.5 steps forward , X < -0.5 steps backwards !

Z high will reset to the minimum value on true, and stay there until taken low.

This is audio rate, so this can for a kind of stepped phasor.
Useful with MSW8 to act as a sequential switch


X = Signal
Y = Delay (% buffer)
A = Delayed X ( Delay + Y)
B = Delayed X ( Delay + Y) + X

This is intended as a ‘microtime delay’ down to sub millisecond, hence the small values by default.
(it will go to 5 seconds, but Delay parameter is more scaled to small size values :wink:

Y is an offset to Delay time.
B is wet + dry signal.

Important notes:
Changing the SIZE parameter resets the delays, if you want to modulate delay time then use Y with a larger SIZE parameters
modulation of Y is not really intended for audio effects, for effeciency it is read at control rate ( 128 samples@48k), so low audio rate,
and there is no interpolation across sample reads, and changes of Y are immediate i.e. its not really the same as changing read head speed.

I’ve no intention of changing this :wink: … I’d like to make a more elaborate audio delay FX with speed modulation and multi head but this will be a separate VST.

Precision Adder

A = X + Y + Z
B = X - Y - Z

Sums or Subtracts X/Y/Z
mostly a development tool, given SSP has native summing of inputs.


A = Constant A + X
B = Constant B + Y

mostly a development tool, given DCG can output constant values and SSP has native summing of inputs.

if X/Y are disconnected then they are 0v, so A/B are the constant values

Can you add this algorithm?

Possibly… of course this comes down to a couple of aspects.

  • do I have time :slight_smile:
  • does this fit SWAT? or would it be better of as a dedicated module?

Note: Whilst Disting may be a source of ideas, I do not plan to implement its algorithms!
This would be a mammoth task, and also pretty pointless…
there are many functions in Disting that can already be achieved by other modules or by the SSP natively.
e.g. you dont need a precision added on the SSP since summing is automatic and lossless on the SSP anyway.

We are not limited by hardware production costs or physical space…
So more complex functions would likely be better implemented as dedicted modules.
e.g. having simple sample/looper in SWAT doesn’t really make much sense, it’d be better to have a dedicated module to do this.

This document is based on the LATEST version of the plugin


see individual algos :slight_smile:
most important tip : read the help text on each algo, whilst inputs/outputs are hopefully consistent - sometimes they might be unexpected


Percussa SSP - https://www.percussa.com/


Dr. Bear! Strong work as per your usual.

Is there any chance to have scaling set to 1.2V/Oct as per the Buchla (pseudo) standard? I primarily use Buchla stuff along side the SSP. This request applies to anything that you develop like the (shq) S&H+Quantizer. 1V/Oct does me little good.
Maybe there is a way to do this already. If so, can you hip me to it?

I love the inclusion of Logic functions. These are annoying to patch up in Buchla-world (or incredibly ‘expensive’ in terms of using one or two modules to kludge something together. I’ll have to try these out over the next couple of days.

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hmm, yeah this would be possible…

theoretically its should be quite straightforward… and you can even do this with the built-in scaling.
basically you would need to multiply (aka scale) any pitch inputs from INP with 0.83333333 (1/1.2) and for any pitch going to the OUT, multiply (aka scale) by 1.2.

thats said…
you cannot ‘enter’ 0.8333333333 on the scaling (I think 0.833) is closest, but this should be close enough for the SHQ to latch on to the correct notes.

(*) as I mention in the notes… be aware that 0v = A4 (440hz) on the SSP, not C4 as is common. (not sure what the Buchla norm is) - but this is not really an issue, you can simply add an offset from the INP pitch output.

if you try this, and let me know… as basically this is all a SWAT algo would do, so it would be useful to know if this process ‘works’

logic functions, yeah these are fun… SWATs 2 op is a bit limited, but useful.
so, I’m probably going to do a logic vst some time, that has up to 8 inputs, which is useful for more generative purposes. though, also for that Id want some more gate ‘generators’.
in particular, things like : euclid, mi grids, clock dividers/multipliers (and another ‘secret’ I have in mind :wink: ), these combined with logic can be a lot of fun.

1 Like

great work as always @thetechnobear, congrats on the new release!

Dr. Bear,

What do we do with the .md files in “docs”?

And in the “other” folder: tb_scales.zip.

Do we do anything with these?

as stated in readme.txt :wink:
the MD files are markdown text files - you can read them with any text editor.
( i guess i could rename to .txt, but really markdown files should have .md suffixes)

tb_scales.zip these are scala files for MTQ that I posted a while back.

Thanks! I was reading the online notes and didn’t see it. I R Th3 Dumb.

holy bananas! you’re killing it with these! Well done!


ha ha @Kent , no worries, happens to us all :slight_smile:
I guess I probably should just rename to .txt to avoid confusion

thanks @NeilParfitt , look forward to seeing what you can do with these modules