The setup and the execution of the electroacoustic part of this work requires a Computer Music Designer (Max expert).

Documentation date: April 7, 2020

Version state


Validation date: April 9, 2020

Version documentalist

  • demoulin (

Version realisation

  • Etienne Démoulin (Computer Music Designer)
  • Tom Mays (Computer Music Designer)

Version length

15 mn

Upgrade Motivation

Update for Max8
Documentation update
64 bit version of the resonator~ max object


Not tested in concert

Detailed staff

  • flute (also piccolo, alto flute), clarinet (also E-flat clarinet), 2 pianos, violin, cello
(Detailed staff comes from Brahms, send mail to for correction.)

Electronic equipment list

Computer Music Equipment

  • 1 MacBook Pro - Apple Laptops (Apple)
    OSX 10.13
  • 1 Max/MSP - Max (Cycling74)
    Tested on Max8
  • 1 Fireface 800 - Sound Board (RME)
  • 1 KX 88 - MIDI Keyboard (Yamaha)
    Or Kurzweil PC88 [Heavy touch] [88 keys]
  • 1 Footswitch / Sustain Pedal - Footswitch / Sustain Pedal
  • 1 Volume Pedal - Volume Pedal
    Plugged in the keyboard

Audio Equipment

  • 4 Microphone - Microphone
    2 for each piano (Ex.: AKG C451 or KM 140)
  • 1 Amplifier - Amplification
  • 2 Loudspeaker - Loudspeakers
    Stereo, in front of the audience
  • 1 Mixing Console - Mixing Console
    4 line inputs (max dacs), 4 microphone inputs, 2 Outputs (stereo), stereo reverb


  • June 11, 1993, France, Paris, Maison de Radio France


  • Lemoine


  • Tom Mays

Work length

  • 10 mn
Download all files
File Author(s) Comment
Download [20.6 MB] Patch rebonds-2020
Download [7.2 MB] Score Rebonds Levinas/Lemoine
Download [171.9 MB] Audio file(s) Record Ensemble L'itinéraire/aeon



This max patch simulates a 16th-tones piano with resonators. The mix between the sampled piano and its resonances should be carefully adjusted (see the calibration and tests section below).

AUDIO and MIDI Setup:

Diagramme Rebonds

Software installation

  1. Download Rebonds2020.dmg on your computer. Open it. Copy the Rebonds folder in your computer.

  2. Open Max 8 and choose .../Rebonds-2020 in Options/Files Preferences

  3. 0pen Rebonds2020.maxpat

  1. Check that there is no warning in the max windows, if it’s the case, correct the path in Files Preferences, close the patch and restart from step 2_._

  2. Double click on p config and choose your audio and MIDI configuration (see below : “Patch Presentation - Audio configuration).

<span style=”font-family:”Helvetica Neue”,Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; font-size:18px”>Initialization routine

When you open the patch:

  1. Check IOVS and signalVS (must be 64) and samplerate (must be 44100Hz)

  2. Click on Load samples (to be done only once in each session)

The window Rebonds-sample go in front of the screen and the buffer~ objects appear:

  1. Click on Init on the main window

  2. Click on DSP on/off on the main window

System calibration and tests

MIDI tests

After the setup process, test the MIDI input sent by keyboard to the subpatcher “Display>MIDI keyboard input display”.


  • sustain pedal

  • volume pedal

  • pitch bend controler

  • keys

If you have any further problems, check the MIDI configuration in the window configuration.

Don’t forget that the keyboard should be on MIDI channel 1.

Audio Tests

Activate the toggle DSP on/off and play some notes with the keyboard

Locate the piano sound in space

To make the setup easier, set the autoplay in the Interactive panel to 1 and the velocity to 70

In the mixer device cut the volume of the resonators

The stereo image of the direct piano must be as wide as possible (low notes to the left, hight notes to the right). Use pan and speaker position to give the feeling that the piano sound is coming from the KX88

The piano sound must not be “attached” to the speaker! In this diagram, the distance between the 2 speakers is used to create a wide virtual space. The main purpose is to simulate an acoustic piano mixed with the 2 other pianos

Balance between Pianos and Resonances

Set the level of the resonance to a minimum 10 or 11 seconds. The effect must be heard but subtle. You should not hear a “Lost in Space” effect ! In the Interactive panel, disable the autoplay. Play any sample from the MIDI keyboard, the sound must disappear after 7 seconds and the resonators continue for 3 or 4 seconds more. If the durations are too long or if you have the impression of hearing “Star Wars”, decrease the level of the resonances (config patcher, level section).

Staccato notes can be simulated by activating the toggle sampler/res sustain of the interactive panel.

The 16th-tone Piano

Adjust the 16th-tone piano to balance it with the acoustic pianos

1. Set the acoustic pianos mics to have a good amplification in the speakers used by the 16th-tone piano. Use similar pan.

2. Play the 16th-tone piano with the other; then with the two pianos simultaneously. At the same time, set the direct piano output equalizer parameters to produce a “spatial and timbral/harmonic” mix. Play especially tremolo, sostenuto around the F (middle of the 1/16 of a tone piano)

3. Adjust the location of the speakers and the panoramics if necessary

Adjustment of the resonances parameters

If the sound of the resonances is too poor, you can change them. Open the sub-patcher config>RESONATORS

To save the modifications, click on the button “store user preset” in the part RESONATORS - presets

Quick test - Playing the Piece:

After the initialization routine:

  • press any note on the keyboard. If the signal is sent to the mixing consol, that means it works.

  • test the pedal

  • The patch is ready !

Details - About the pedals (documentation for the performer)


To have optimum control of the dynamic on this piano, a volume pedal has been added. The performer must adapt his style to the sensitivity of the pedal to find the dynamic of this piece.


In this version, the sampler is integrated in the patch. That allows you to activate the pitch bend only for certain keys of the keyboard. There is a bend zone in the left part of the keyboard (between F1 and G#0).

The Bend pedal works only in this area. This allows you to play as far as the bass C by pressing slowly the pedal, leave the pedal pressed, then continu to play in the right side of the keyboard.

At the end of the resonance time of the note, release the pedal. In this way, medium et treble notes are not affected by the pitch.


The sustain is used continuously. The patch implement this functionality (cf. toggle sampler/res sustain locate in display>Interactive panel ).

Addendum : more details (Tom Mays)

Patch presentation - RESONATORS Configuration

  • Tuning: resonators are tuned with the samples (in 16th-tone)

  • divisions of a semitone: 8 division of the half-tone

  • starting note: 60 for central C

  • Sustain input level multiplier: 20, when sustain is activated the resonances are longer so you will need more volume

  • No-sustain input level multiplier: 1, when sustain is disable the resonances are shorter so you will need less volume

  • Resonance bank sub-division pans: each bank of resonators is composed of 3 parts to create 3 panoramic positions

  • Frequency multipliers: each bank is related to an harmonic range on the piano (Frequency multiplier = harmonic)

  • Amplitude multipliers: amplitude of each bank

  • Sustain decay rate multipliers: coefficient of decay of the resonators during the sustain

  • No-sustain decay rate multipliers: coefficient of decay of the resonators without sustain

  • Mutes: each bank can be stopped to get more CPU load. If you use a powerful macintosh you can activate all 4 banks (desactivate the toggle mutes)

Noise test:

  • noise pulse width: timing in millisecond of the noise pulse

  • noise volume: volume of the noise

  • trigger noise pulse: click here to activate noise pulse in the resonators

Patch presentation - Velocity Correction

In the INTERFACE part of the main window, click on the velocity input corrections button.

The response curve of the velocity has been set to have the best response from the KX88 keys. This should allow you to play pianissimo, then increase to 127 without pressing the keys too hardly.

  • Vel scale factor: muliplier factor of volume values where 1 = no change (default = 1.2).

  • Velocity curve factor: curve definition. Positive for exponentiel, negative for logarithmic (default = 1.4).

VEL - presets (Cf.: SAMPLER Configuration).

Patch presentation - Sample Keygroup Editor

In the INTERFACE part of the main window, click on the “open instrument editor” button

© IRCAM Creative Commons License
This documentation is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Program note

Rebonds est fondée sur le principe de la superposition de trois modes écrits pour trois pianos accordés différemment : l'un sur le principe du tempérament, l'autre en relation de quarts de tons et le troisième en seizièmes de tons. L'intérêt de ces superpositions ne se résume pas à l'utilisation paradoxale des battements. Ce qui me semblait essentiel était la relation enharmonique des différents modes qui provoque lors de la rencontre micro-intervallique des unissons et des battements complexes.

Rebonds utilise deux principes d'écriture. Le premier élucide la signification du titre : il s'agit d'une polyphonie par rebondissements à l'unisson de lignes écrites en canon selon les principes que j'ai déjà développées dans [work:10024][Préfixes] et dans mes [work:10031][Trois études pour piano]. Le second principe est celui de l'ornementation. Le piano en seizièmes de tons ornemente des unissons de la flûte, du violon, du violoncelle et de la clarinette.

La forme de l'œuvre est conçue en boucle fermée ou spirale. Le système tournoyant qui se referme donc sur lui-même procède de la superposition des modes micro-intervalliques. La forme n'est donc pas conçue comme une évolution directionnelle mais comme un système clos.

Michaël Levinas.

Version documentation creation date: April 7, 2020, 12:19 p.m., update date: May 6, 2021, 3:09 p.m.