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which DIY VCO PCBs?
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Music Tech DIY  
Author which DIY VCO PCBs?
Hey folks,

I'm planning on making 2 VCOs. Now I know about the MFOS and CGS PCBs and I've built me two MFOS modules from PCB before, but am curious about possible others out there. I would love to have a set of decent sinewaves and do a bit of FM'ing. Oh yeah and with both on 1 panel they would have to fit into my eurorack...

any ideas?
thanks in advance.
Not sure if it meets all your needs, but you might want to check out
Jurgen Haible's Living VCOs on the Electro-Music Forum.
Looks like a very nice triple oscillator unit.

For sines I recommend using filters that self-oscillate and track 1v/oct.
I'm in the process of building two MFOS oscillators into a 28 hp faceplate, Pcbs mounted and stacked parallel-wise. I'm populating the boards right now.

I've been messing around with the layout in Front Panel Designer, but am waiting for knobs and pots to arrive from Small Bear for final layout. Depending on how many attenuators included, it looks like it can get pretty crowded. . .

Honestly I don't know how well, if at all, this configuration is going to work. I've built some electronic circuits before, but this is going to be the first project I will have built to conform to some size standard. Ergonomics might get hairy with this, and may have to expand to a larger faceplate...

Bridechamber has some other oscillators available in 5U, but probably won't be able to fit into Euro. I went with the MFOS oscillator for Euro because it's not as wide as the CGS one, and can (theoretically) fit into 28 hp, which is convieniently 1/4 of the standard 84 hp width Euro rack. I was looking at bumping up to 32 hp for a dual CGS oscillator module, but I decided to save those oscillators for zthee's awesome Serge inspired, all CGS panel when it becomes available. nanners
I am very happy with my DIY'ed YUsynth VCO, maybe worth giving a shot?
Jurgen Haible's Living VCO looks real nice and looks like it will fit into eurorack. I just can't really find anything on pricing and ordering. He must be European right?

Now to google yusynth...
I've never used an MFOS oscillator, but I did build an Oakley VCO in 5U some time ago and was quite impressed. As subjective as it all is, I found the sine waves on the Oakley to have a very pleasing "full" quality to them, which I think is a good way to describe the Oakley VCO in general (which is heavily inspired by the Minimoog VCO). Unfortunately while the design would certainly fit into eurorack, I'm fairly certain it requires the extra 3 volts of +/-15v supplies to generate stable +10 and +5 voltages within the oscillator core, whereas some of his other designs do not. If you're building your own cases however this shouldn't be an issue, and there are enough designs built for +/-15v that you may enjoy having a rack with that level of power in it.
+1 for Jurgen Haible's living VCO if they're still available. otherwise i'd probably go for a ken stone VCO
it's a really good version of what is sort of the standard DIY VCO. and bridechamber has a really nice faceplate for it.
another vote for mfos. i just plugged in my mostly mfos modular for the first time in a month. MY ASS IS BLEEDING it sounds awesome!!!
I have two MFOS Oscillators myself and am pleased with them for what they are. If you're looking for something real simple you could try this single chip VCO located over at EM and created by "Nicholas."

Beware, it's V/Hz but that works well with a lot of my older stuff (ancient Korg, Paia, etc.) . I haven't built any of these circuits but plan to when my freaking parts order finally arrives..

Also, it doesn't look like there's a sine output but it may still be a fun project..
if you want fm'ing and 12volt go for the Ian Fritz thru-zero pcbs
Magic Smoke is doing a run of the Thomas Henry XR-VCO, and it seems like it's been decked out a little bit.
beat me to it! thumbs up these sound really nice, I gotta snag a few of those boards (sold out quicktime on the last run) This '3 octaves' from one VCO that Tim Servo mentions at the bottom of that thread has me drooling!
Well thanks for all the very informative replies.

I must add I'd like to buy a commercially available pcb so no Yusynth for me though the page does have a lot of other nice projects I'd like to try (on stripboard). A VCO I would like to work and not be all too quirky.

Oakley I just can't do for the power problems.

XR VCO I read about before, seems interesting. I'll read on a bit.

Ian Fritz aint so cheap, but likely offers something special(?) although I don't mind basic. Performance should compensate eh? (And boy do I love my own performances... help )

@Valis / Johnnymad: Any thoughts on FM'ing MFOS?

Well I'm still really biased towards MFOS likely because of previous experience. These VCO's seem versatile enough and parts are pretty available here. I think I will try my hand on a couple of them and later on try some of the other suggestions, when the need for VCO's arises again
that is.

Thanks people. we're not worthy
i like to find a stable vco with proper sines,tri,saw + square outputs has pwm and can be easly calibrated v/0ct minimum for 5 octaves
ive used a lot of different VCOs and can easily recommend either

MOTM 300
oakley VCO

for diy, although you might be space challenged with both (definitely the oakley). both sound absolutely fantastic and are designed with a lot of care. the oakley has a remarkable sync sound. the motm 300 is very precise but the pwm is very rich and pleasing. it is overall an outstanding vco.

i am getting up on a couple of these XR VCO pcbs though. very very interested in these.
Luka wrote:
if you want fm'ing and 12volt go for the Ian Fritz thru-zero pcbs

regarding the entrypost in this thread this is the only answer. if it has to be +-12V anyway.( but i'm not knowing the MFOS is 12V too as i just rmembered )
35$ is not expensive. motm, Oakley and Haible will cost you more.
the Haible is not what you asked for i guess.
motm300 is cool, has a wide frequenzy range, is very precise but you would have to take the partskit too, and is +-15V.

Ians Teezer has also a very wide frequenzy range, is also very precise, sine is good. The Thru zero capabilitys offers IMHO not the full TZ package,
but even without TZ is the Teezer a good VCO.
Goes into eurorack but you must set the PCb to an angle ( i've built one in euroformat) ( PCB has a stupid size )

at you find PCBs for yusynth projects. not shure if the VCO is available.
I've built two. the sine is not that good, the VCO simple, has nothing special, but is an easy build
what is the teezer missing in TZ functionality funky?
That Ian Fritz Thru-Zero sure sounds sweet...

Well I have a lot of other stuff to do before I can do any VCO actually, so I will do me some good researching.

Again thanks for the info folks!
I'm feeling allot of love Lotsa Love for the Oakley VCO but this doesn't surprise me as it's my favorite Module Rasta-nana

I know Tony is working on getting the Oakley VCO to work on 12V for a Euro module

Due to the size and apparent lack of Euro DIY It looks like it may use surface mount components so mabe no DIY waah
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