Count to five manual

This manual is slightly out of date (as of Oct 26, 2016) with the current firmware, we will be updating it soon, in the meantime you can read read this manual to get the idea then see these 2 posts to read what was added after this manual was written for rev k and l boards

Firmware version 0.963 update
Firmware version 0.962 update
Firmware version 0.96 update

Firmware Updates and Instructions
Identifying different versions
Quick printable 1 page reference card pdf (special thanks to Nick Gill for this contribution)


Facing the pedal with the text the right way up, the input jack is the one slightly more too the right, output slightly more to the left on the top side of the unit. The expression pedal input is the jack on the right side of the unit.

Power requirements are 9VDC negative tip for all versions. Version h, i and j require around 100mA, while k and l require 150mA.

How to use:

The pedal has three main modes. On rev h/i theses are selected with the "MODE" switch. On rev j/k the same switch is simply labelled "M". In all modes the "MIX" knob functions the same, and simply blends the wet and dry signal of the effect. On rev h/i fully ccw is fully wet. On rev j/k this has been changed to fully cw being fully wet.

Mode 1 (mode toggle up):

In this mode a buffer of fixed length is constantly written to at a fixed speed/ It is simultaneously read back  at a variable speed with possibility of feedback to the write head.

The DIR 1 knob controls the direction and speed of the read head.

The LEN B knob selects the length of the buffer.

The FBK knob controls the amount of feedback from the read head to the write head.

Also note the LEN B knob has discrete settings. The buffer length will jump as you move the knob between about 10 lengths. Each length is half/double the next/previous setting. You will see the LED change color when you change the length.

The "EXP" switch on rev h/i and "E" switch on rev j have identical functionality. In fact, E is just shorthand for EXP which stands for Expression pedal selection switch. If you have an expression pedal plugged in you can assign it to either the DIR 1, LEN B or FBK function using the 3 way switch.

Currently Rev k only:
Because mode 1 can really pump out some high pitches it may be desirable for some to have a low pass filter on the effected signal. You can do this in mode 1 by holding down the soft foot swtich and turning the DIR 1 knob. When you hold down the footswitch the LED will go green. While the footswitch is down, turning the DIR 1 knob ccw will lower the cutoff frequency of the low pass filter. Max cw is no filter applied/ very high cut off frequency. When you find the cut off you like simply release the soft footswitch and go back to using mode 1 as normal. The filter is only applied in mode 1, it is not global. The filter setting will however stay in effect if you leave Mode 1 and return. The setting will be lost if the device is powered down.

The filter feature will be added into the next firmware release for all older board revisions. I expect to release this at the end of February/Beginning of March 2016, currently this feature only appears in the rev k firmware.

Rev h/i only:
Accessing/altering the global quantization setting can  be done in Mode 1 on  rev h/i units as of firm ware 0.93. The purpose of this is to To set the quantization mode hold down the soft foot switch and move DIR 1. There are 6 modes and they are spaced evenly throughout the travel of the DIR 1 pot.

Mode 2 (mode toggle middle):

In this mode up to four seconds of sound can be recorded, and then played back in shorter segments randomly.

The DIR 1 knob controls the direction and speed of the read head.

The LEN S knob controls the length of the resampled slices.

The RAND knob effects how randomly the slices are selected. Ccw sets it to no randomness at all, the sample is always played from the beginning. Cw allows the start of the slices to be chosen from anywhere in the original recording.

The soft switch is used to record a sample. Hold it down to record. If you record for more than 4 seconds it will simply wrap around and layer on top of the first four seconds. Once you release the soft switch the sample begins playing according to the setting of the knobs.

While the sample is playing you can record a new sample while the old one is still playing. Simply hold down the soft switch again and when you release the new sample will play.

To stop and cancel the sample, tap the soft switch quickly.

Initially the LED will be flashing blue in this mode, before recording anything. While recording it will be red, and while playing back it will be blue. After a tap to cancel it will also be flashing blue.

The E/EXP switch functions as in Mode 1, but instead assigns to DIR 1, LEN S and RAND.

Mode 3 (mode toggle down):

In this mode up to 8 seconds can be recorded and played back by up to three read heads simultaneously.

The DIR 1 knob controls the direction and speed of the first  read head.

The DIR 2 knob controls the direction and speed of the second read head.

The DIR 3 knob controls the direction and speed of the third read head.

The soft switch is used to record a sample. Hold it down to record. If you record for more than 8 seconds it will simply wrap around and layer on top of the first 8 seconds. Once you release the soft switch the sample begins playing according to the setting of the knobs.

While the sample is playing you can layer on top of the original recording by holding down the soft switch again.

To stop and cancel the sample, tap the soft switch quickly.

Initially the LED will be flashing blue in this mode, before recording anything. While recording it will be red, and while playing back it will be blue. After a tap to cancel it will also be flashing blue.

In mode 3, the E/EXP switch controls how many read heads are active. When E is up only DIR 1 will have an effect since only 1 read head is playing. E in the middle enables 2 read heads, controlled by DIR 1 and DIR 2 knobs. E down enables all three read heads and DIR 1,2,3 will all have an effect. If you plug in an expression pedal in mode 3, it will always control DIR 1. 

Rev j/k 'Q' switch:

On the rev j and k models the quantization can be set in any mode at any time. Simply push the toggle up or down to cycle through the 6 possible quantizations. The possible modes are:

  1. No quantization.
  2. Chromatic quantization.
  3. Whole tone scale quantization.
  4. Diminished triad quantization.
  5. Augmented triad quantization.
  6. Perfect fifths and octaves quantization.

With the most current firmware (0.931) for rev h/i boards all six modes are available by holding the soft switch in mode 1, and moving the DIR1 knob. The original firmware for these boards only included 3 quantization modes (1, 2 and 6 in the above list).

Transcendence mode:

Under normal operating conditions the sample buffer is cleared when either LEN B in mode 1 is adjusted or the mode switch position is changed. Essentially all modes start with an empty buffer. Based on user feedback some people would prefer this did not happen, so the shipping firmware for rev k has a new mode which I have called transcendence, since the data in the buffer "transcends" mode switches. 

At the moment this mode is only implemented on the latest rev k firmware. However similar to the filter feature, it will be added to all older models in the next major firmware release.

Activating transcendence:

To enable transcendence simply bypass the pedal and then hold down the soft footswitch. You will see that the LED alternates blue/green/blue/green about every .5 seconds. If you release the footswitch while the LED is green you will enable transcendence. If you release when the LED is blue you will disable transcendence. 

When the pedal is re engaged all blue led indicators will change to green, and all green to blue if transcendence is active. SO for example in mode 1 where normally the LED alternated blue or red depending on th LEN B setting, it will alternate green or red. And when you hold down the soft switch to adjust the filter it will turn blue instead of green etc. Similar logic applies to the LED in mods 2 and 3.

Consequences of transcendence:

When flipping between modes the audio buffer will no longer wipe clean, instead it will keep what was written in the previous mode(s). An example would be that you could record a loop in Mode 3, then flip to mode 2 and have that exact loop played randomly, or flip again up to mode 1 and get the echoes added etc. There are a few caveats and subtleties to this though which are outlined in the rest of this section.

In Mode 1, while transcendence is active the buffer is not wiped when LEN B is changed.

In mode 2 there are no longer 2 swapping 4 second buffers. There is only one 8 second buffer. If you record a sample and release the soft footswitch it will start to play back, similarly to how mode 2 would work without transcendence. However, when you record again it will write over the current playback buffer, instead of a second unheard one. So an interesting effect of this is that you can hold down the soft switch while recording and have the audio be randomized more in "real time" instead of having to record a loop, then release the footswitch to start playing that loop.

If you record a loop from stop (ie you tapped he soft switch and had a blinking green led) in either mode 2 or 3, the length of that loop will transcend when changing modes as the loop length and will not be changed until you stop playback again in either mode 2 or 3. For example, you freshly record a loop in mode 2 that is 3 seconds long. When you move to mode 3 it will play this loop right away and any layers added will loop around this 3 second base. But then if you tap the soft switch to stop playback and record a new loop of 4 seconds, when you flip to mode 2 now it will randomize over a 4 second sample etc. 

Mode 1 follows this theme somewhat, but is a bit more complicated depending on what is happening before entering mode 1. If a loop has been recorded in mode 2 or 3 and you flip to mode 1 the maximum LEN B setting will correspond to the length of the loop, not 8 seconds. However if no loop was recorded or transcendence was enabled while in Mode 1,  the max length achieved  by LEN B is 8 seconds as usual.

When you leave mode 1 in transcendence, mode 2 or 3 will automatically start playing. The length of the original recorded sample is maintained if your journey was something like: record in mode2/3 flip to mode 1, flip back to mode 2/3. However if no loop was recorded when entering mode 1, or transcendence was enabled in mode 1, then the length of the sample played in mode 2/3 is determined by the setting of LEN B at the time of exiting Mode 1. 

Please feel free to ask questions or make suggestions in the comments below, and I will do my best to address them as soon as possible.


Jan-Paul said...

In mode 3, the expression switch toggles through the three tape heads when there is no expression pedal plugged in (it adds the knobs in one by one) , up, only Dir 1 does anything, middle, Dir1 and Dir2 are active, Expression Down all three knobs are active. Cool feature.

Adam Carter said...
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Adam Carter said...
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William Haworth said...

Is there really no way to update firmware from an apple computer? Will this be possible in the future?

Scott said...


in the future, yes. even now yes, just bootcamp windows on your machine. or use your computer to contact someone with windows and meet them for a coffee etc.

Olivier Malhomme said...

About cycling with the Q switch : does it mean when passed position 6 it goes back to position 1 ? Or do you flip the switch backward to 1 ?

Adam Carter said...

it cycles directly on to position 1.

Cortex said...

In mode 3, PLEASE try and implement a separate volume control of the three loop copies, I think this is essential to using all three copies. If using an octave up copy it is SO much louder than anything else and just obscures the other copies and makes the whole mode almost unusable.

For example you could try using the Q toggle, when one would hold Q up for a couple of seconds the pedal would go into the loop volume mode and then one would be allowed to adjust levels using the knobs for separate loops. Then upon holding the Q toggle down for a couple of seconds the pedal would return to normal operation.

I think this would greatly improve the usability of mode 3.


Alexander said...

Fantastic idea.

Troy Date said...

My Q switch reverts to the middle position as soon as I am done touching it. Is that normal?

Vacuous said...

Any plans on making the expression pedal affect the mix? this could be quite useful :) Cheers!

SageSkaggs said...

Hey, not sure if this is the right place for this but on my CT5 on mode one it phases in and out of working (almost as if there were a volume knob being turned up and down but only on the wet signal) and im not sure what it is or how to fix it. Any ideas?

Simon Greaves said...

Mac and Linux (and windows) users should be able to update firmware using dfu-util which is compatible with Dfuse. I haven't tested this, and careless use could brick your ct5, but it should work. Any thoughts Scott?

Scott said...

@Troy Date
Yes it is normal.

This is not possible on any of the released board revisions.

Yes it is normal, when the read and write heads cross paths, the playback is muted to avoid artifacts. It will be more noticeable the shorter the buffer length you use.

@Simon Greaves
Looks like it can work but i have not tried it myself either. If it works ok i will update the programming instructions

Shades Wade said...

hey scott, just got my ct5 today. it seems to be working great, but i just read about the rev k current draw. im using a 100ma. will anything detrimental happen if its only drawing 100ma?

Scott said...

@shades wade

i would recommend using something that can deliver 150mA. If it seems to work at 100mA i doubt any damage will occur, but it may not always function correctly or may burn out your supply eventually if it is only rated for 100mA.

Linus Schrab said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Linus Schrab said...

Hey Scott. I just played around with my new CT5. The DIR3 in mode 3 seems to be silent. Am I doing something wrong?

Shades Wade said...

good to know. i am now using a 1 spot adapter with it and everything sounds great. my white fritter has a new best friend. thanks a bunch Scott

Guillermo Pizarro said...

Any idea which power supply is good for Rev K?

Scott said...

@linus schrab

What is the position of E switch? Looks like part of the manual got cut out last edit, the E switch in mode 3 will control how many heads are on. Up is 1 head, mid is 2, down is 3. So if only one head is on dir 2 and 3 do nothing, if only 2 heads are on dir 3 does nothing etc. To get all 3 heads in mode 3 put E switch down.

Sorry this used to be in the manual in the mode 3 section, the first comment from JP actually copies part of it. I will add it back in.


@guillermo pizarro

Any supply which can meet the current requirement should be ok, but maybe other people can share what they use. Personally i have a 1-spot, because it is relatively cheap and can power many many pedals. But that does not mean it is the only acceptable supply. Do you have something already?

Guillermo Pizarro said...


I have the one spot, I thought that was only 100mA though. Excuse my ignorance.

Scott said...

@ Guillermo Pizarro,
no worries, maybe there are different models, mine reads: 9V 1700mA, which would power about 12 ct5s. I have not attempted that yet though :)


Shades Wade said...

Does the expression pedal jack take ts or trs ?

Scott said...

@Shades Wade



Calum McLaughlin said...

I've noticed that the output of my ct5 (rev k) is very low compared to my unaltered signal. Is this normal at all?

Scott said...

@Calum McLaughlin,

It should be pretty even. You can email me a clip if you want a definite answer.


Noah said...

Hi there,
What resistance works the best for the expression pedal? Do different EXP functions benefit from different values?
Unbelievably cool pedal. Thanks!

Scott said...


Try to get 10k or above.


Hovig Sarkissian said...

hey scott all of a sudden my ct5 started having an extreme volume drop when i turned it on. The whole signal can pretty much be barely heard. I first thought it might be some power issue but I'm pretty sure i have sufficient power. Im using a 1spot w/ 1700Ma. My cables are brand new as well. Sometimes when I switch to a new power it works but when i engage it off and engage it back on it cuts out. I can't tell if this is an internal issue or some short or something.

sourshoes said...

Will new features be added to firmware of older rev boards such as j? Or will I need to swap for a newer version ct5 to get those newer features, such as volume on each head in mode 3, etc.?? Thank you!

Sebastiano Rossi said...

I would also like to know if there will be a firmware upgrade for the rev j, thanks!

JazzMessenger said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chris Marvin said...

A footswitch to begin/stop recording seems essential (if the unit is not on the floor).

I'd much rather use the exp jack for a remote soft switch than a exp pedal, then knob-tweak on a stand.

Could a firmware update make this possible?

Or can the pedal be modified?

Steven Yost said...

No suggestions, just wanted to say that this pedal far exceeded my expectations. I sneak away from the family to go mess around with it and always come away inspired. Thanks!

James Forest said...

hey Scott!
i just received my CT5 ,it s amazing..
the only problem is that the pedal is hissing when it s engaged..and i m playing really soft music so it s really audible

is there sometinhg i can do to fix that


meanmedianmoge said...

I'm sure you've gotten this question dozens of times, but how is the progress on the firmware updates on the older models (h,i,j)?

Loving my rev j so far - you've really created one of the most crazy, but completely musical, pedals around!

Tom said...

Hey Scott.

Really digging my CT5. There is, however, some really irritating noise - almost like sample aliasing? - when I play in any of the modes. I have the mix knob set to about 45% so it's kicking out some good volume.

Someone said - and I can't remember where I read it - that there's some internal volume controls that can be set? Is this right? I don't want to go tinkering with the pedal innards if I can help it...


Scott said...

@Tom, sorry for slow reply. You can make a clip and email me.

Billy said...

I'm not sure about anyone else, but I do find the explanation of transcendence to be quite confusing. Can you create a demo video, if this does not already exist? Does anyone have one, or know if one exists? Thank you!

Sebastiano Rossi said...

Trying again hoping I could get a response, even negative :) about the firmware updates for version J? I think I'm not the only one waiting for those...

Unknown said...

What expression pedal is the CT5 designed to be used with? I've tried both a Boss and Yamaha and the sweep is not the full range on either. This pedal is absolutely outstanding though! Thanks!

Peter Belec said...

I've seen some peiole doing rhythmic things with their ct5, is there a tap tempo?

Unknown said...

Sounds like maybe your LFO is active

Unknown said...

I noticed some interesting behaviour in mode 1. This seems to mostly revolve around the trigger setting. Appears to have some kind of effect on the Len b. It's like it gets locked up or something. It seems to be resolved by deactivating Transcendence mode though. Although I haven't tested this repeatedly to make sure. Not sure if this is a bug or just the way that Transcendence mode works. I will look at it further and try to report back. Excellent pedal really fun

Unknown said...

Could you explain the quantinize modes? I can't understand how they work. I can see that when a Quant mode is active, the DIR knob only moves in the specified quant intervals.

But how does it effect the actucally feedback/playback?

Also when I change quant modes, the DIR knob seems to be "reset" to a random mapping