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What is arpeggiator - A powerful tool in music

what is arpeggiator

Arpeggiator, or arp for short, is a partial sequencer engine designed to break chords into separate notes, according to different definitions. Today in this guide, we will understand our options and how to apply them in depth.

How does Arpeggio work?

Arpeggio plays predefined notes or chords, as a rhythm in steps, rising or falling, or randomly,
Let’s take the AM chord as an example, you can play it in sequence, but it can sometimes be boring, but if we apply even a very simple arp to it, repeating the notes back and forth, there will be movement in the sounds, which adds a lot to the music overall.
Usually, this helps producers to process faster and get more creativity in production. 

There are several different types of arpeggiators with different options and functions. We will clarify this later in the guide.

How to use Arpeggio

In principle, you can apply an arp to any sound you want. As a result, depending on your style and mood, you will soon decide where it is more appropriate, but let’s go more into the standard settings of the tool.


The range determines what range of sounds you want your chord to play, i.e., how many octaves up or down from the original octave.


One of the most influencing factors on the arpeggiator’s behavior is the patterns, with the help of which you can decide whether your pattern will be upward, downward, perhaps a combination of both, or perhaps even randomly.


This parameter will help you choose between full synchronization with the tempo of your project, partial synchronization, or tempo.

LFO and Filter

This usually exists in synths in other sound engines, but it will take you to the next level. The parameters apply a filter to the note or chord progression.

Common uses

Arpeggioators in live preformences

Arpeggiators are a widespread tool used in live performances. They allow musicians to create a series of notes played one after the other. This can be used to create harmony or to solo over a chord progression.

There are many types of arpeggiators available, so it’s essential to choose the one that will suit your stage performance.
It is essential when choosing the tool that will accompany you during the live. It is to choose a fast and intuitive tool that will make your life easier.

Arpeggiators as effects processors

The arpeggiator is a powerful effect processor that can be used for various purposes. Here are some common uses for the arpeggiator:

1. Creating melodic patterns and sounds.
2. Adding a Rhodes or Wurlitzer-type sound to your instrument.
3. Controlling the speed and tone of your rhythms.
4. Making chord progressions more exciting and harmonic.
5. Enhancing vocals or acoustic instruments with added color and depth.

Where can you find the arpeggiator?

There are various plugins specifically designed for this. Still, synthesizers, samplers, and DAW software come with a built-in arpeggiator. For example, in FL Studio, in any virtual instrument you open, you can apply the software’s built-in arp with fantastic functionality and convenient presets.

Xfer Cthulhu

If you often use the arpeggiator, and the built-in tools do not satisfy you, Xfer Cthulhu is the best choice you can get today regarding arpeggiator and complex patterns. With a powerful sequencer engine, you can do almost anything you can think of rhythmically.


In this article, we have looked at some of the more common uses for the arpeggiator and what you can do with it to improve your musical skills. Armed with this knowledge, you will likely use the arpeggiator more creatively and create a sound that is uniquely your own. Whether you want to add an extra layer of complexity to your music or explore new sounds, the arpeggiator can be a great tool.

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