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WIGGLING 'LITE' IN GUEST MODE

What next?!?
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Fractional Rack Modules Goto page 1, 2  Next [all]
Author What next?!?
J.w.M.
Okay-- I'm badly in need of a module to finish off my first frac rack. This has probably been covered before (I've seen the minimal system threads and whatnot), but not exactly for my situation.

So-- here goes: I've got a VCO, Filthy Filtre, EG1, and a Quad Mix VCA (RIP-- it's a great module). I'd like to get the maximum use out of this last space in my rack and am not sure what to add. Basically, I need some sort of core module that will compliment the rest of the modules and maybe pave the way for the second rack that I build. Any suggestions?

I've been looking at the Klang Werk and the Improbability Drive, but I'm not sure that either of those are "core modules" to the extent that I think would be useful to my synth. What do you say?
thermionicjunky
If you want to continue to build a core of basics, I would suggest another VCO or maybe one of Wiard's filters.
consumed
a VCS.
thermionicjunky
That's a great suggestion. The VCS can act as many different modules. This is THE maximum use of a single space. I have the Modcan version ( Dual LFO) and it is always useful for something.
consumed
i do have an order in with modcan for a dual lfo, and cant wait to put it next to the vcs for a feature comparison. voltage controlled slopes are really useful and interesting.
Kwote
both a VCO or VCS sound like great suggestions. however you might wanna strongly consider the Klangwerk as they won't be available after Blacet is out of stock on the current run.

i ordered one two weeks ago from blacet. generally i've gotten my modules from them pretty quickly so i'm guessing they're backed up on Klang orders.
Muff Wiggler
this is a no-brainer! MiniWave 8)
Kwote
Muff Wiggler wrote:
this is a no-brainer! MiniWave 8)


i'm curious how something like the digital miniwave affects the analog output of whatever it processes. i'm into analog wholeheartedly so i just wanna understand once and for all how digitally generated wave shapes or control signals change the sound.
Muff Wiggler
well, the miniwave uses digital calculations to determine what sort of analogue voltage (waveform) to output.

the stuff that comes out of the miniwave is voltage, simple electric current, +/-5v in range, in different shapes. that's as analogue as it gets, ever

unlike a Blacet VCO, the process by which the MiniWave determines the shape and rate of this voltage output is a digital process. the VCO also outputs raw current, also +/-5v, in different shapes. The VCO uses an analogue process to determine the shape.

the digital process employed by the miniwave allows the creation of analogue voltage in a manner that cannot be possible using an analog-derived calculation, thus offering the synthesist unique and new options within the analogue spund spectrum of their synthesizer

another common digital source in analogue modular synths is the digital noise generator. it is found on many hybrid modules along with analogue white noise. digital noise offers something unique and different from analogue noise, in partiular when used as a unique modulator for a CV input, makes it very useful in a synth, while still giving you complete analog sound generation and processing.

the blacet frequency divider module uses digital divider logic to divide an analogue source into - yep, a bunch of different analogue sources. no foul.

digital is also seen in shift registers (Wiard Noise Ring, many other noise generators) to accomplish that which is not possible in analogue.

the wiard, like the buchla, incorporates a hybrid philosophy, which retains analog processing wherever possible, and in the outputs of all modules (which need to spit out only 'voltage' to work with a modular synth anyway), and using digital techniques where they offer novel and unique processing and control options unattainable with analogue. i think all synthesists should embrace this philosophy and I do not think it in any fasion perverts any concept of 'analogue purity' within a synth

my opinion anyway
consumed
Muff Wiggler wrote:
this is a no-brainer! MiniWave 8)


miniwave is in a VERY close second. =) it should probably be his first module in the second rack.

oh yeah, *then* an lfo after that =)
J.w.M.
Yeah-- A second VCO might be a good way to go. However (n00b question alert), in order to get good results, would a second filter/eg be needed or could I go with my current setup?
Muff Wiggler
a second vco is very nice to have for many reasons - you can play tuned intervals, or 2/3rds of chords, also a proper VCO allows for you to use audio rate FM on your other VCO, and be able to accurately control the FM frequency

also with two vcos you can do the detuned unison thing, which is always good for thickening up a voice

one of my favorite 2-vco/unison tricks is the 'waveform animator' patch using 2 VCOs and a Bananalogue VCS, this one sounds so nice. The patch is on the VCS webpage.

As to needing another filter/EG, well the answer is 'yes' in some cases, and 'no' in others.

If you are playing monophonic lines and are using the second oscillator for thickening the voice, or for applying FM to the primary oscilator, there's no reason you need another filter and EG/vca. Just mix the two VCO's outputs and put that into the filter (many filters have multiple inputs to make this easier), then run the filter into your VCA with single EG etc.

however if you want to do a duophonic voice, you will need two of everything, VCO, VCF, VCA, EG. Additionally you'll need a midi-to-cv converter that can handle polyphony, and not all of them can.

it's good to have multiple EGs regardless - a very common 'east coast' patch is the standard VCO-VCF-VCA(EG), however there's a second EG fired at note-on that opens-then-closes the filter a little bit from it's nominal frequency.

If you have a Blacet VCO, a nice 'second EG' trick is to use the VC Wave output, and have your second EG feeding the Wave Shape CV input, and have it rise and then fall with each note-on. Adds a little emphasis and sounds great.
Kwote
Muff Wiggler wrote:
well, the miniwave uses digital calculations to determine what sort of analogue voltage (waveform) to output.

the stuff that comes out of the miniwave is voltage, simple electric current, +/-5v in range, in different shapes. that's as analogue as it gets, ever

unlike a Blacet VCO, the process by which the MiniWave determines the shape and rate of this voltage output is a digital process. the VCO also outputs raw current, also +/-5v, in different shapes. The VCO uses an analogue process to determine the shape.

the digital process employed by the miniwave allows the creation of analogue voltage in a manner that cannot be possible using an analog-derived calculation, thus offering the synthesist unique and new options within the analogue spund spectrum of their synthesizer

another common digital source in analogue modular synths is the digital noise generator. it is found on many hybrid modules along with analogue white noise. digital noise offers something unique and different from analogue noise, in partiular when used as a unique modulator for a CV input, makes it very useful in a synth, while still giving you complete analog sound generation and processing.

the blacet frequency divider module uses digital divider logic to divide an analogue source into - yep, a bunch of different analogue sources. no foul.

digital is also seen in shift registers (Wiard Noise Ring, many other noise generators) to accomplish that which is not possible in analogue.

the wiard, like the buchla, incorporates a hybrid philosophy, which retains analog processing wherever possible, and in the outputs of all modules (which need to spit out only 'voltage' to work with a modular synth anyway), and using digital techniques where they offer novel and unique processing and control options unattainable with analogue. i think all synthesists should embrace this philosophy and I do not think it in any fasion perverts any concept of 'analogue purity' within a synth

my opinion anyway


that's totally the perspective i'm coming around to also. God dammit. haha. now i have to add more modules to my already staggering list. :( oops lol twisted
Muff Wiggler
welcome to the madness :shock: twisted
J.w.M.
Thanks for the advice. I swear-- an apprenticeship under you would be great.

Anyway, I'm thinking that a second VCO would really be a good way to go. While I couldn't fully exploit it without the aid of several other modules, the idea of getting some 2/3 chord and detuned unison stuff happening.

Awesome suggestion concerning VC Wave / Second EG trick. I've known that I'd need a second eg within about five minutes of powering up my first one.

For the time being, I think I'll aim for a powerful monophonic synth. Once I get an actual salary or discover that I had a rich uncle or something, I'll probably go down the road of polyphony.

About hybrid systems: I'm in the position of not at all being an analog purist (*ducks*)-- as long as it sounds cool, can be patched up in unusual ways, and plays well with the rest of my gear, I'm all for it. Digital, Analog, hybrid, whatever.

As for the VCS-- I'm being strange about this first rack and want it to be all kits that I build myself. Once I move into my second rack, anything's fair game (ranging from CGS stuff through the fully-assembled gear). The VCS looks amazing, though, and will be one of the first modules I'll buy for the next system.

Actually, I've been wondering what the VC Wave output is all about... Is it simply a shapable wave?
Muff Wiggler
the VC wave is very cool - the circuit is a Grant Richter design

when applying cv, or rotating the knob, it morphs smoothly from a triangle, through to a square, through to a variety of distorted square waves. many interesting waveforms can be dialed in (which makes for some fun syncs with other vco's), and the sound of the morphing is really cool as well
J.w.M.
Okay-- After waiting around a few months longer than I planned, my rack is almost done (as soon as my Improbability Drive kit gets here and gets built).

So... I've put together another plan for my next rack. Since both plans include a VCS and a Miniwave, those two modules will probably end up in my next rack in either case. Everything else is up in the air.

So-- this first image is the design I came up with a while back.


The second one (below) is what I'm currently thinking of:



Any thoughts? Suggestions, criticisms, etc. are all welcome. I intend to get all of the above at some point. The real issue here is what would be most useful for a small synth (which currently houses a VCO, Filthy Filtre, Improbability Drive, EG1, and VCA Quad Mix). Thanks!
Muff Wiggler
"I can has cheeseburger" lol awesome

that looks great really. I get a little carried away worrying about layout as well - but I also find it's fun and inspiring to change it around from time to time

I think you have come up with a very elegant plan in that second pic, with the HZ bookended by the splitter and mixer. good plan.

a couple of thoughts i have - one probably doesn't apply in your system

but for one, i can't really consider a miniwave as less than 3 spaces. A miniwave needs the expander :shock:

for two, again, i really like your plan and changing it for this reason would probably be stupid - but in my system, which being such an elephant obviously has a lot more space for 'sections of stuff'... anyway i sorta think the Hex Zone will work nicely in the 'timing/clockwork/sequencing' sorta section of the synth. It really asks to be placed near at least a Binary Zone and a Frequency Divider, not to mention Scanner & Sequential Switch.

not to, you know, throw your plans for a loop or anything razz
Muff Wiggler
ps i freakin' love the way you mock up your panels with graphcs. very slick. also good for the ol' gearlust. helps you visualize things. sweetness 8)
J.w.M.
Awesome advice! Thanks.

Yeah-- in the long run (once I have a more extensive system), I intend to reorganize the whole thing to create a more efficient workflow for patching. Rather than create sections devoted to one function, an idea I've thrown around a bit is to basically build sub-synths, with each one a capable synth in its own right. They can of course be combined. We'll see...
That's a beauty of a modular system, I suppose-- I can always scramble it up and reorganize it.

The expander looks mouth-watering. Maybe I'll learn my way around the basic functions of the MW (and socket rocket), and add the MW expander to my third rack (by then I can start thinking about creating some real dedicated layouts and moving them together or something).

Thanks again! I love passing time (that I should be spending reading about soil processes) making up modular setups.
zerosum
Quote:
Maybe I'll learn my way around the basic functions of the MW (and socket rocket)

There is a *TON* of potential uses right there. A lot, I'm sure that will be fine for months while you focus on funding other modules and learning how they can interact with eachother to get you the sounds you need.
I think you will really enjoy the miniwave, especially as a distortion device.
plord
J.w.M. wrote:
The expander looks mouth-watering. Maybe I'll learn my way around the basic functions of the MW (and socket rocket), and add the MW expander to my third rack


Good plan. As you work on your layouts, be advised that the Expander connects to the primary miniwave by a short-ish ribbon cable. You should be able to mount them directly over/under each other in 2 racks, or next to each other obviously, but you won't be able to split them wsith another module in the same row, for example.

The Socket Rocket has some crazy stuff in it, a window comparator with variable width and some crazy transfer functions. It's a beast!

Paul
Muff Wiggler
plord wrote:
be advised that the Expander connects to the primary miniwave by a short-ish ribbon cable. You should be able to mount them directly over/under each other in 2 racks


I can't get mine to reach to be above/below each other, I need to place the expander right beside the MW. It's also tricky to have it to the left of the MW - I keep it on the right.
J.w.M.
Okay-- I'm the luckiest dumbass around.
I got my Improbability Drive kit yesterday and spend every non-school waking moment building it. Everything seemed to go okay-- I looked it over before plugging it in. Upon plugging it in to test it out, the S/H, quantization, and LP filter were only audible once I cranked my limiter. I decided to remove the module and see what was up.

Turns out, I'd forgotten to solder four pins of an IC socket down. There must have been some contact, hence the extreme quietness. Upon soldering everything together, the module works like a dream and sounds great.

Whew. This'll teach me to really closely examine the PCB's before putting them in in the future. I'm really lucky I didn't cause serious damage.
nathankirchner
2008 is going to be a big year, start saving.
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