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What draws YOU to IME modules? OR Tell your story!
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> The Harvestman  
Author What draws YOU to IME modules? OR Tell your story!
Perhaps I'm just projecting/imagining here so correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems to me that IME has a more cult/devout user base than most other module manufacturers (who here just has ONE of these modules???). I'm not trying to slight other manufacturers or put IME on a pedestal but these modules seem to scratch an itch that gets most people's attention.

For me personally, it's the cohesive sound and design aesthetics. Each module stands out individually while also fitting right into place alongside the whole system (of IME modules). It's like Scott has a master plan for THE industrial synthesizer and is just giving us the parts piece by piece. And each piece has this incredible attention to detail and unique quality that is (to me) unmatched.

My story is this:
I started out with a rack filled with modules from many different manufacturers and I found that despite having spent thousands of dollars on all this STUFF there was absolutely no cohesion in the system and I was truly just accumulating things which somehow amounted to less than the sum of their parts. But NOW after much deliberation I sold off all my other modules and have an IME only rack and I'm so incredibly happy with the results I'm getting. Everything just fits. And I don't even really get into harsh noise stuff-- I write structured synth-pop songs lol. MY ASS IS BLEEDING There's something really satisfying about taking these digital yet organic beasts and taming them to fit into the context of a pop song (and honestly, I find the pure single sine waves that come out of your standard euro vco to be far more unpleasant to listen to than a harsh drone coming out of my system).

Anyways, I thought I'd see what everyone else has to say. Go on!
Pretty much similar.
Though haven't felt the need to go Harvestma only.

The builtin utility functions are what always grab me.
Cohesion and play-ability. Simple stuff. Panel layout, voltage compatibility (mostly, barring some Mk1 vs MkII interfacing), enough territory covered by IME products to not need a bunch of augmentation from other manufacturers. The sound is obviously a draw. My rack of HM/IME is most definitely a cold-dead-desert-island-hands instrument at this point.

I like experimenting with other products and manufacturers, and have yet to try a rack full of only/predominantly Doepfer, Verbos, Cwejman or Buchla, so this is definitely a grain-of-salt point of view. That said, there's definitely something to the Gov's designs that make the sum greater than the parts.

All hail The Harvestman
before knowing the existence of an entity called THE HARVESTMAN i had a small 3u with makenoise stuff (that i still have, the usual dpo-maths-optomix combo) and then i started reading stuff about those nasty orange coloured was immediate attraction! the sounds i was hearing from demos (mostly donutz and hondas) , the layout and graphics...all attracted me. and so i started with trading stuff for a zorlon cannon mk2 which was and still is one of the oddest discoveries in the modular world for me. then i traded an echophon for a tyme sefari mk2 and just WOW! "this thing is made for experimentation and realtime fuckery!!!"
then came the two donutz, mk1 and 2 because i couldn't decide which one i preferred based on demos and i thought "i buy two, see which one i prefer and sell the others". never. i will always keep both because they are so different and i make very different uses of them.
so now i'm left drooling for a piston honda mk2 and maybe an andore (and here, again, which one? the dirtiest first edition with additional tables or the smartest mk2? obviously i'll sooner or later end up with both....) perhaps one day i'll decide to trade my rené for a stillson hammer mk2 but for now i'm keeping the makenoise snake charmer, i just love it...

side note: i'm totally into noisy industrial so that's another reason why i like IME so much.

post scriptum: the funny thing is that IME modules aren't the majority in my rack (i have more doepfer and makenoise than IME) but IME is the only brand i feel deeply in contact with. when i'll be rich (prolly never) i'll make myself a full IME-only rack.
Not sure about the order of events, but also started out with a mixture of manufacturers. Picked up the Stillson Hammer mkii along with the DA mkii and HD mkii. I used to have a Serge system, so kinda just used it like a smallish serge. Discovered that much fun could be had and now has grown to a 6u case. Has room for the Bionic Lester mkii and hopefully Escalation Dominance in the future. May also add a second Polivoks ENV/VCA.

Have added a PH mk11 (used to own PPG 2.2 and 2.3 so LOVE wavetable synths). Gotta sound warm and organic though, so PH delivers.

Love the sound of the Kermit (beautiful oscillator even though I know its an LFO really)

Have a small Polivoks 'section' (VCG-VCF-ENV/VCA). The VCG is an amazing sounding oscillator. Would really like 2, but only have room for 1 more module in that row so have to choose between VCG and ENV/VCA

Last pick up was Argos Bleak, which I was unsure about until I spent 15 mins with it. SO GOOD nanners

IME modules all work really well together, there are hidden depths to almost all of them. and together they have a ton of character. Not perfect and sometimes the HD mkii sounds like it has a constant 'slight wobble' that I wish wasn't there or the DA doesn't quite have the punch that I could get from a Serge DSG, but no synth is perfect.

And of course they all look fantastic together, in a truly OCD way.
wireangel wrote:
Last pick up was Argos Bleak, which I was unsure about until I spent 15 mins with it. SO GOOD nanners

This. Captures everything. That can be said. About something. That can't be said.

Various paraphrases of the above I've also expressed:
  • "Wow, $900 for a two channel quantizer? Do I need it, especially since I prefer to reside in the domain of atonal/inharmonic/nonscale/noisy soundscapes?"
    Uses module for XX minutes, where XX < 60.
    Never mentions price of the module again or regrets its cost, as if it wasn't even a concern in the first place.
  • Should I get the mk I or the mk ][ version?
  • Where is the manual?
    You are writing it while using it.
Dove into Euro with a PGH System 90, it was the hybrid digital/analog east/west system, about 3 1/2 years ago. A few months later I had quite a few Makenoise modules and started experimenting with other brands, WMD, Mutable, Intellijel and more. My first Harvestman module was the Piston Honda MKII. I almost immediately sold the PGH Symbiotic Waves because I realized how smartly design this module was.

Next was the Zorlon Cannon, which I had for quite a while, but had such difficulty wrapping my head around it. I think i was trying to hard or just not ready, but I sold it. Only to eventually buy another ZC about a year later which is now used in nearly every patch.

I proceeded to add nearly the whole digital IME line over time. The orange and aesthetics were undeniably an attractor, but the biggest thing for me, attenuversion on nearly every CV input. CV inputs placed near the knobs and functions they affect. One knob per function and no real menus to speak of, yes the SHII has some menu diving, but it is not very deep and all pretty much one step away from where you are. Which is amazing for such a complicated module. So at the very top of my list is the clearly well thought out interface on every module.

I actually think that IME and Makenoise are the only euro companies that are consistent in their design philosophy and share the same or damn close interface ideas. That does not and will not prevent me from using or buying other modules, but my cases are Makenoise and IME dominant for sure.
Was afraid these would resemble borderline softcore Harlequin romance novels (ergo why my reply is camouflaged in brevity...).

"I placed my hand on the Andore's attenuverter. Without even moving the knob a moist sub moan immediately projected from the speakers. Was this finally the configuration I've always been thirsting for?..."
Tunatoboggan wrote:

Very much this. SlayerBadger!
mt3 wrote:

"I placed my hand on the Andore's attenuverter. Without even moving the knob a moist sub moan immediately projected from the speakers. Was this finally the configuration I've always been thirsting for?..."

Twisting the delicate orange knob gave me goosebumps as it created more discontinuity than I had anticipated. I was pleasantly surprised to learn I am more of a P. Freq. "It hertz, donut?", I thought to myself, but in a good way.
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