question about Nord Modular

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inoshi
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question about Nord Modular

Post by inoshi » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:37 am

Hi guys,
I've enjoyed a lot of the music made on Nord Modular g2s and would love to have one. But i'm wondering.... would it make any sense to purchase one when i could just use Reaktor + midi instead? I've never used Reaktor, but if i understand correctly it's like a more abstract max/msp with a lot of pre-built modules similar to the g2 editor.
Thanks in advance for any input.

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Voltcontrol
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by Voltcontrol » Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:07 pm

The obvious advantage is having a standalone hardware synth with Nord Modular (to a lesser extent with Micro Modular). If that does not matter to you, Reaktor or perhaps VCV Rack would be the route to take for me.

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DJFonzi
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by DJFonzi » Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:23 pm

Voltcontrol wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:07 pm
The obvious advantage is having a standalone hardware synth with Nord Modular (to a lesser extent with Micro Modular). If that does not matter to you, Reaktor or perhaps VCV Rack would be the route to take for me.
Why the "to a lesser extent" with the MM? It's just as standalone as any of the other Nord Modulars.

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Voltcontrol
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by Voltcontrol » Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:28 pm

DJFonzi wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:23 pm
Voltcontrol wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:07 pm
The obvious advantage is having a standalone hardware synth with Nord Modular (to a lesser extent with Micro Modular). If that does not matter to you, Reaktor or perhaps VCV Rack would be the route to take for me.
Why the "to a lesser extent" with the MM? It's just as standalone as any of the other Nord Modulars.
I mean that there's less of an advantage considering the amount of controls on the hardware.

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Pugilistas
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by Pugilistas » Thu Jan 09, 2020 6:18 pm

The Nord M2 having all the screens to give you info on what the knobs are doing is indeed very useful. Working with the Nord M1, even with a very organized setup, you are still moving knobs while wondering what exactly did this one do?

They are all still very useful/interesting. The crew I work with have everything from micro to M2.

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Navs
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by Navs » Fri Jan 10, 2020 2:44 am

Yes, there is something nice about the dedicated hardware. I was encouraged to seek out a G2 keys rather than get the cheaper Engine plus a MIDI controller and I'm glad I did - it just works.

That said, I can echo the sentiment about sometimes having to re-familiarise yourself with patches, even if you have the feedback of the LCD screens. Partly for that reason, my favourite patches are minimalistic and intuitive: three-knob-wonders on the Micromodular, where you don't have to think, just listen :sb:

But maybe the question you could ask yourself is which setting you'd be using the virtual modular in: if it is only in the studio, in front of a computer screen, then, yes, other alternatives are equally valid. Live, something like the MM is great: it is small and has patch recall.

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Voltcontrol
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by Voltcontrol » Fri Jan 10, 2020 3:24 am

Come think of it Axoloti Core or an Organelle running ORAC might be interesting too.




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Monotremata
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by Monotremata » Fri Jan 10, 2020 11:34 am

DJFonzi wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:23 pm
Voltcontrol wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:07 pm
The obvious advantage is having a standalone hardware synth with Nord Modular (to a lesser extent with Micro Modular). If that does not matter to you, Reaktor or perhaps VCV Rack would be the route to take for me.
Why the "to a lesser extent" with the MM? It's just as standalone as any of the other Nord Modulars.
Not quite, its ONE channel of the other modulars. And you're limited in polyphony (4 voices). Its only got one DSP where the Modular Key and Rack have 4. The 3 knobs and a single button leave a lot to be desired too. I finally sold mine a couple months ago, took me forever to get rid of it, but luckily a guy bought it that had a laptop ready and was planning to take it around with him and work outside the house. He loves the thing so power to him. Unless you get crazy assigning CCs to controllers in the patches (and making charts of what's what in each patch you make), it leaves a lot to be desired as a performance machine. I used to just make self playing patches and would let it run in the background, its not really very 'playable' without work. If you can find one Id definitely grab the keyboard or rack first. Its gonna be a bit more but you'll enjoy the modular alot more too. Its different than Reaktor and definitely compliments it well. The sound is definitely late 90s 'Nord' though.

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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by Blairio » Fri Jan 10, 2020 1:36 pm

Early Nord VA stuff has certain sound, which I really like. It carries over into later VA ranges, even up to the present. If you buy the current Nord Lead A1 it shares the same sonic gene code as the early Nord modular stuff (to my ears anyway).

So perhaps the question of whether something like Reaktor (which I really like and use occasionally), is beside the point. If you really want the Nord sound, then other VA substitutes are just that, substitutes.
Last edited by Blairio on Fri Jan 10, 2020 1:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

inoshi
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by inoshi » Fri Jan 10, 2020 1:37 pm

thanks for the input guys. I think i've decided to go with a reaktor / midi setup, as the benefits of the G2 do not warrant what would be an expense to me.
Although i suppose i will finally need to get over my absolute and irrational avoidance of all things midi.

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ersatzplanet
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by ersatzplanet » Sat Jan 11, 2020 4:26 pm

There are many alternatives to the Nords in both software and in hardware. The software side can be more expansive (more module varieties and it will get updated) and with the right fader boxes or midi controllers, the actual playing of the software can be matched pretty closely. The big problem is of course this involves a computer to play and all the possible hassles that make doing so live a pretty headache situation. In the studio though it can be golden since the software can often play directly into your DAW without and loss at all.

In the hardware side, there are many pieces that do a similar job. Things like age ER-301 and the SSP come to mind as powerful Eurorack equivalents. They are often as expensive as a used Nord too. Another are boards like the Axoloti which will do a hell of a lot for it's $80 price tag and after you add the pots, sliders, switches, etc. to configure a control layout you like, it can be there custom synth of your own design. You can buy LOTS of them for the price of a uses Nord too. Hundreds of modules in that system too.
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advrsry
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by advrsry » Sat Jan 11, 2020 4:34 pm

Reaktor sounds excellent though, and perhaps something like NIs controllers or Novation's SL would be "good enough" to be something like a contemporary nord modular.

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DJFonzi
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by DJFonzi » Tue Jan 14, 2020 6:45 pm

Monotremata wrote:
Fri Jan 10, 2020 11:34 am
DJFonzi wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:23 pm
Voltcontrol wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:07 pm
The obvious advantage is having a standalone hardware synth with Nord Modular (to a lesser extent with Micro Modular). If that does not matter to you, Reaktor or perhaps VCV Rack would be the route to take for me.
Why the "to a lesser extent" with the MM? It's just as standalone as any of the other Nord Modulars.
Unless you get crazy assigning CCs to controllers in the patches (and making charts of what's what in each patch you make), it leaves a lot to be desired as a performance machine. I used to just make self playing patches and would let it run in the background, its not really very 'playable' without work. If you can find one Id definitely grab the keyboard or rack first. Its gonna be a bit more but you'll enjoy the modular alot more too.
When I bough my first Micro, it was one of the first ones in the States. First batch, anyway. Yeah, I'd have loved a rack version, but these were at brand-new prices, and I had to sell my MG-1 and Prodigy to afford the MM. I gigged the shit out of that box and never looked back at the Moogs. So, I suppose I'll have to disagree with you on how much it leaves to be desired as a performance machine, based on the performing *I* was doing with it.
I made some pretty cool patches for it back in the day, too, working around the polyphony limits. I love NMs. OK, I never really bonded with the G2 engine. I need at LEAST a volume knob. But I'm still not aware of anything nearly as flexible as the NMs, even the MM, that can run without a PC.

anotherjones
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by anotherjones » Mon Jan 20, 2020 6:58 am

After messing around with iPad apps for a year or so, trying various configs to work with my live rig, I've dropped the idea of any computers, USB cables or audio interfaces, and gone back to my expanded G2 Engine.

I have Reaktor 6, which is excellent and now much more powerful than the G2; but I prefer the interface of the G2!

The g2 modules are also relatively "low level" compared to the more complex modules in Reaktor 6 blocs.

As mentioned, it has the Nord character, in more "standard" synth patches.

IMV the G2 is also a killer drum machine.

I sequence it with an Octatrack. Patch recall isn't instantaneous, but v quick - never glitches or crashes. There's the status module to ensure LFO's re-sync with master clock on patch load, and/or variation switch. On some tracks, I use the OT scene buttons to switch between the 8 patch variations, sequence and modulate the morph groups with the OT's LFOs.

I build and familiarize myself with the patches, and always assign g2 controls to the same page on the OT, so I'm getting to a stage where I always know what's where. It's a very powerful and steady combo. I still don't see anything out there that for me could replace the G2.

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ersatzplanet
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Re: question about Nord Modular

Post by ersatzplanet » Mon Jan 20, 2020 2:14 pm

I have traded or sold, and later bought back 2 Nord G2's and 3 Nord Modulars. I currently just got a unexpended Nord Modular to go next to my current G2. I love these machines. I have always loved the G2 for the interface. It gets tiring using the "Find" button on the Nord Modular all the time to remember what the knobs are assigned to. The advantage to the Nord Modular is that the knobs on the front panel are al just pots so you can mod them to being joysticks or Vactrol CV ins or FSRs pretty easily. The G2's encoders make it not very easy on it.

The Nord modular sounds different than the G2 also. I have no idea why it should, maybe different converters or something. The NM1 seems a little fatter sounding.

I may make a dedicated MIDI controller for the NM1 to make it easier to run the basic stuff in a patch with dedicated control surfaces. Time to check out programmable controllers with their own writable LCD screens but that just may bee too much work.

While typing this out I accidentally mis-typed Nord Modular once and the auto-correct replaced it with Need Modular. The computer knows me too well...
-James

James Husted - Synthwerks, LLC - www.synthwerks.com - info@synthwerks.com - james@synthwerks.com
Synthwerks is a proud member of the Mostly Modular Trade Association (http://www.mostlymodular.com).
Always looking to trade for Doepfer P6 cases

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