Jim Singh has released FlexibeatzII, a free step sequencer software for Windows.
It is a free, complete pattern based music making machine, featuring a step sequencer that lets you set patterns of notes using a default grid of 16 buttons (or steps), each step being 1/16th of a measure, although you do have the option of changing resolution to 1/32nd of a measure if you desire. You then chain these patterns of notes together to form longer compositions. You are not restricted to a 4/4 time signature, it is possible to create compositions in 3/4 time, 5/4 time etc by setting the appropriate notes. You can sequence the sounds in up to 10 channels, and you can use any .wav sound samples of your choice, or sounds you synthesize with the application itself, in each of the channels. You can even combine samples with sounds you have created from scratch, such as frequency modulating one with the other.
Besides extensive sample editing and synthesis options, you also have a multitude of effects such as reverb, delay, reverse, compression, distortion, chorus, ring modulation, auto-wah, vocoding, waveshaping and 3-band parametric EQ per channel available. You can vary the pan, pitch and level of each sound in each channel, mute and solo sounds, specify which sounds can cut-off which other sounds, vary each sound’s start and end point, and accent and swing notes, all while the sequence is playing.
Tools are also provided to automatically chop up drum loops into individual hits, chop up samples into bits and automatically re-arrange the pieces, lock tempo of sounds in channels to master tempo, and auto-generate arpeggiator patterns. Once your composition is complete, you can record it to a .wav and .mp3 file.
FlexibeatzII can be operated as a standalone application working off its own internal timer, or you can slave playback via midi-sync to another DAW or external sequencer. I find it really helps with my workflow and creativity, and hope it can be of benefit to others.
FlexibeatzII for Windows is available to download as freeware.
More information: FlexibeatzII