O|D ER-301: Sound Computer (Available Now!)

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hyena
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Post by hyena » Fri Mar 15, 2019 4:42 am

my only hope for the future is an expander with DC-coupled outputs, so we'll be able to spit out more audio but most important CV's!!!!
this thing is such a beast for cv generation\processing!

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Post by behndy » Fri Mar 15, 2019 8:31 am

wrong threeeeeeaaaad. my bad.
Last edited by behndy on Fri Mar 15, 2019 7:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Ypsi Kid » Fri Mar 15, 2019 10:24 am

hyena wrote:my only hope for the future is an expander with DC-coupled outputs, so we'll be able to spit out more audio but most important CV's!!!!
this thing is such a beast for cv generation\processing!
This would be f*#king excellent! Having the ability to send CV outs from the 301 would be insane - that's probably my one grip about it, thinking about the possibilities if we did have the ability to send CV's out of the module kind of blows my mind a bit - haha!

Here's hoping!

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Post by Sinamsis » Fri Apr 12, 2019 9:21 pm

I ended up snagging a 16n, thought it would be useful in several applications. Can someone point me to some resources, or direct me as to how one might connect the 16n and ER-301? Been reading the OD forum and I'm not clear. It looks like the TXb might be the best option perhaps?

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Post by starthief » Fri Apr 12, 2019 10:16 pm

Sinamsis wrote:I ended up snagging a 16n, thought it would be useful in several applications. Can someone point me to some resources, or direct me as to how one might connect the 16n and ER-301? Been reading the OD forum and I'm not clear. It looks like the TXb might be the best option perhaps?
https://llllllll.co/t/a-users-guide-to-i2c/19219

I personally think TXb is probably the best way to connect it. Just make sure you don't plug a normal TS patch cable into it (using tape or a plastic jack cover to block the second jack is a good idea), and make sure the 16n is plugged into the TXb before powering either of them on. You may need to power up the 16n before the ER-301.

Somebody on eBay was selling these -- I bought one and didn't try it, but I believe the wiring is correct and it might work if you don't have any other i2c devices.

Also if the ER-301 is the only i2c device you have, you'll want the 16n to run i2c leader firmware. Mine (built by Michigan Synth Works) came with the follower version by default, which is what I needed anyway.
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Post by Sinamsis » Sat Apr 13, 2019 10:22 am

starthief wrote:
Sinamsis wrote:I ended up snagging a 16n, thought it would be useful in several applications. Can someone point me to some resources, or direct me as to how one might connect the 16n and ER-301? Been reading the OD forum and I'm not clear. It looks like the TXb might be the best option perhaps?
https://llllllll.co/t/a-users-guide-to-i2c/19219

I personally think TXb is probably the best way to connect it. Just make sure you don't plug a normal TS patch cable into it (using tape or a plastic jack cover to block the second jack is a good idea), and make sure the 16n is plugged into the TXb before powering either of them on. You may need to power up the 16n before the ER-301.

Somebody on eBay was selling these -- I bought one and didn't try it, but I believe the wiring is correct and it might work if you don't have any other i2c devices.

Also if the ER-301 is the only i2c device you have, you'll want the 16n to run i2c leader firmware. Mine (built by Michigan Synth Works) came with the follower version by default, which is what I needed anyway.

Thanks, I did see that instructional page and it was very helpful. But I'm an idiot and it still wasn't clear to me. It mentions powered boards, etc, and doesn't address specifically connecting the 301 and 16n. If I only wanted to connect those two devices, would a cable like that suffice? I just am unclear on what actually needs a powered board, pull up resistors, etc. I got my 16n from Michigan Synth Works as well.

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Post by moogah » Sat Apr 13, 2019 10:26 am

I can't offer answers at the moment, but I've got a 301 on the way and a pcb+panel set for the faderbank so I'll be sorting this out at some point in the coming months. Will post here with how I did it.

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Post by starthief » Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:10 am

Sinamsis wrote:Thanks, I did see that instructional page and it was very helpful. But I'm an idiot and it still wasn't clear to me. It mentions powered boards, etc, and doesn't address specifically connecting the 301 and 16n. If I only wanted to connect those two devices, would a cable like that suffice? I just am unclear on what actually needs a powered board, pull up resistors, etc. I got my 16n from Michigan Synth Works as well.
I'm pretty unclear on the details too, honestly.

My guess is that the cable should work fine with the ER-301 -- but TXb is a safer bet. You can try TXb without the power cable, and if that doesn't work, try it with the power cable. One of those options should take care of the pullup resistor thing (which I honestly don't understand).

The worst things I've had happen are:

- Teletype crashes when I try to send over i2c. The problem there was TXb needed to be powered and I hadn't tried that yet.

- Teletype sometimes doesn't boot. When that happens I have to power it down, reboot the 16n, and then power it up.

But the ER-301 has been pretty robust with i2c for me.
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Post by Hovercraft » Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:14 am

This is all still fairly new, and I2C is usually invisible to users, so it’s confusing. The faderbanks from MSW are normally sent out without pull up resistors installed and the firmware set to follower mode. Connecting the 16n faderbank to the ER-301 will require pull up resistors somewhere—either on the faderbank pcb, or on an I2C bus like the telexb. The 16n faderbank will also need to have its teensy loaded with the firmware in leader mode. There are only 2 resistors that need to be added to the faderbank pcb, but they’re smt-so that can be slightly tricky. The leader firmware is available pre-compiled—so it’s simple to load via a micro usb cable.

If your ER-301 is from one of the first couple of batches (rev 7), it won’t have a dedicated I2C header, but can easily be modified by bridging one diode and using some alternative headers. You’ll also need a 1/8” TRS to three female dupont jacks to attach between the faderbank and the ER-301’s I2C connection.

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Post by Sinamsis » Sat Apr 13, 2019 1:04 pm

Hovercraft wrote:This is all still fairly new, and I2C is usually invisible to users, so it’s confusing. The faderbanks from MSW are normally sent out without pull up resistors installed and the firmware set to follower mode. Connecting the 16n faderbank to the ER-301 will require pull up resistors somewhere—either on the faderbank pcb, or on an I2C bus like the telexb. The 16n faderbank will also need to have its teensy loaded with the firmware in leader mode. There are only 2 resistors that need to be added to the faderbank pcb, but they’re smt-so that can be slightly tricky. The leader firmware is available pre-compiled—so it’s simple to load via a micro usb cable.

If your ER-301 is from one of the first couple of batches (rev 7), it won’t have a dedicated I2C header, but can easily be modified by bridging one diode and using some alternative headers. You’ll also need a 1/8” TRS to three female dupont jacks to attach between the faderbank and the ER-301’s I2C connection.
Nice. So that’s pretty much what I concluded from my reading. I need a TXb. Does anyone else make these or an alternate product? They’re sold out on his site. I’m also watching the OD forum where it looks like a MIDI to i2c converter is being worked on. That would be amazing. I also wonder if both of these could be use simultaneously in the future.

Anyways, once you have it properly connected is it plug and play with the 301? How do you assign faders? This whole concept is super exciting for me. I know for some it defeats the point of modular, but these possibilities are what piqued my interest in the 301. I hope Rossum will consider something like this as well. I guess in the end I prefer a semi modular approach where certain things can be normalled, and those connections being disrupted or augmented by patching into a jack.

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Post by starthief » Sat Apr 13, 2019 1:29 pm

Sinamsis wrote:Anyways, once you have it properly connected is it plug and play with the 301? How do you assign faders?
The 16n sends messages identical to Teletype SC.CV commands, on ports 1-16. So:

- On the ER-301 in the Admin menu, under "Monome Teletype", enable Teletype control.
- Make sure the i2c slave address is 0x31 (I think that's the default anyway).

Image

Among the units in ER-301 there's one called SC.CV. It has a "port" parameter, which you just set from 1-16 to match the fader number. The output of that unit will be the fader value.

Image

So you can insert that into any chain associated with a parameter (and you can follow it up with a slew limiter, quantizer, a mixer with another chain in it, etc. if you like).

For instance, I have a variation on someone's harmonic oscillator custom unit where I've assigned sliders 1-8 to the levels of the 8 harmonics (and then I can still use the other 8 sliders for whatever).
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Post by Hovercraft » Sat Apr 13, 2019 2:19 pm

Sinamsis wrote: Nice. So that’s pretty much what I concluded from my reading. I need a TXb. Does anyone else make these or an alternate product? They’re sold out on his site. I’m also watching the OD forum where it looks like a MIDI to i2c converter is being worked on. That would be amazing. I also wonder if both of these could be use simultaneously in the future.

Anyways, once you have it properly connected is it plug and play with the 301? How do you assign faders? This whole concept is super exciting for me. I know for some it defeats the point of modular, but these possibilities are what piqued my interest in the 301. I hope Rossum will consider something like this as well. I guess in the end I prefer a semi modular approach where certain things can be normalled, and those connections being disrupted or augmented by patching into a jack.

I thought I saw someone post a possible alternative I2C bus board on the lines forum, but I think I'd wait for the next batch of TXb's. since they're expressly made for eurorack. As starthief illustrated, you set the ER_301 to receive I2C on the correct channel, and use the SC.CV units to bring in each fader output. The faderbank seems exactly in the spirit of modular, since it's a non-specific device that outputs cv's, midi, and I2C. It's fantastic for the ER-301 on multiple levels--as a robust controller, and for the elegant use of the I2C interface, so you don't need to string 16 patch cables, and tie up the same number of inputs.

For the ER-301 Quad Spatiaizer I developed, the 16n faderbank is a manageable interface that can be played during performances. I couldn't find anything comparable that wouldn't have been multiple modules and an unholy tangle of cables.

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Post by Sinamsis » Sat Apr 13, 2019 9:03 pm

Thanks guys, I feel a lot more comfortable with i2c now. Looks like I'll hold out for a TXb, any idea how often they come out? I've signed up to be notified when more are available.

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Post by starthief » Sat Apr 13, 2019 9:11 pm

From the sound of things, it's probably going to be a while before bpcmusic builds more.

Since it's open source and there's probably continuing demand for it, maybe some other builder can be talked into making a batch of them?
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Post by Antlerface » Sun Apr 14, 2019 4:58 pm

starthief wrote:From the sound of things, it's probably going to be a while before bpcmusic builds more.

Since it's open source and there's probably continuing demand for it, maybe some other builder can be talked into making a batch of them?
Didn't realize it was gonna be a while, I'd be down to sign up for some sort of other builder doing a release. I need one and am shit w an iron.
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Post by Hovercraft » Sun Apr 14, 2019 6:30 pm

Probably a good idea to email BPMC and find out when a new batch is likely. If I was waiting on a TXb, I'd probably just go ahead and get the two pull up resistors soldered on the faderbank pcb unless you have other modules you need on the I2C bus. The obvious choice for a builder would be Michigan Synth Works, since he's already building a bunch of faderbanks, but no idea if that would be cool with BPMC.

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Post by behndy » Fri May 10, 2019 1:42 am

sooooo as amazing as the 301 is, 'm not really bonding with mines and have some stuff to cover, so listing mines in BST if anyone is interested in skipping the build time. with the People's Choice panel and a black panel.
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Post by mayyammay » Sun May 12, 2019 10:12 pm

Ypsi Kid wrote:I think the other thing to note is the wonderful UI. I was very hesitant to get one based on ready information and just the functionality. Hanging out in the forum, asking questions and watching the aforementioned videos helped alot, but once you understand the workflow, it just seems to click.

I'm not a jedi master with this thing at all, but I can get really fun, usable patches out it pretty quickly... and once you get something you like, you can save it!

I would highly recommend this module, it one that just keeps giving back. Then you stack the user community over top and it really is something.

Highly recommended from me as well and I feel like I've just scratched the surface! Now I want to leave work and go have a play - LOL.
Agree with this 100%. It is an amazing module!

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Post by Cobramatic » Tue May 28, 2019 9:55 pm

I thought I'd check out how far I could get using the ER-301 as the ONLY sound source for an entire set - seeing as the possibilities are endless and only limited by the CPU usage. Here is a video of how it went.

I set about building up the elements I wanted using both synthesised parts and some sample manipulation and ended up with 4 of each before I hit the wall with the CPU slowing down to a crawl.

The full set is sequenced and controlled by Monome / Ansible Grid running both Meadowphysics and Kria modes and the brilliantly useful 16n Faderbank (via i2c cable - very convenient!).

ER-301: 4 Synthersised parts (2 custom built Sine wave 4 op FM synths, a Sine wave and band-pass Kick drum, and a Sawtooth based duophonic Synth) and 4 sample based parts (Vocal Drone, Synth Drone, 2 x percussion and glitch mixed samples plus granular effects).
On most channels I also have Delay, Reverb and Band Pass filter units per track (All in the 301).

All that took the CPU up to about 93% which created a few pops and crackles as it struggled to keep up! (But I left in there for 'character').
I certainly tried to optimise things to squeeze more out of it. Building up tracks via mixer units and sharing effects definitely helped.

The 16n Faderbank is incredibly useful with the ER-301 via i2c - it allows 16 internal connections so I could then easily use the 8 outs of the Monome Ansible plus extra clocks and modulation ins from Planar, Pam's and Levit8 - I think I've got 30 modulation destinations all up.

I use the Faderbank to both mix channels and as a modulation source (with several multipoint destinations per fader). Practising the set a few times helps memorise what fader does what, but I laid it out logically (for me) so I could drastically change things with a couple of simple fader swipes.
Having a smooth easy travel on those faders is a big plus.

The video was recorded at Sanctuary Point, NSW South Coast, as part of the 'New Sound Waves' - 'Modular in the Lounge' Series (MITL 7 - On Vacation!!) 25th May 2019.

Recorded in 1 take to a Zoom F8 and mixed in Stereo.


[video][/video]

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Post by starthief » Tue May 28, 2019 10:57 pm

Whoah, 93% CPU is more than I'd have risked playing live. It worked out though :)

I agree, the 16n Faderbank is ER-301's best friend and an all-around great device. In something I recorded last weekend, I had it controlling a couple of ER-301 parameters, a couple analog CVs, mix levels in my DAW via MIDI, and an 8-step sequence for Teletype simultaneously :D
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Post by Leverkusen » Wed May 29, 2019 2:06 am

starthief wrote:Whoah, 93% CPU is more than I'd have risked playing live. It worked out though :)

I agree, the 16n Faderbank is ER-301's best friend and an all-around great device. In something I recorded last weekend, I had it controlling a couple of ER-301 parameters, a couple analog CVs, mix levels in my DAW via MIDI, and an 8-step sequence for Teletype simultaneously :D
Huh, 93% sounds exciting (there is a stupid motorcycle analogy 8-) ) - how do you use the 16n in your setup? Sounds like i2c slave to teletype and CV to the ER-301, right?

I have not built mine yet due to stupid part purchase mistakes and I am still not certain how to handle the pull up resistor question.

Are the CV outputs good to use when all are populated? I guess the great advtantage of the ER-301 in this configuration are the internal CV-scaling options. The disadvantage would be having to use all the CV-inputs or going via teletype i2c and using a lot of code estate just to forward i2c from the 16n...

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Post by starthief » Wed May 29, 2019 6:06 am

Leverkusen wrote:how do you use the 16n in your setup? Sounds like i2c slave to teletype and CV to the ER-301, right?
Yeah. My default Teletype scene is:

Code: Select all

I:
L 1 16: SC.CV.SLEW I 25
M 25

M:
L 1 16: SC.CV I FB I
I don't usually mind giving up the metronome -- I can almost always just use a different clock source (like Marbles) or use DEL. If I really need it, I switch to using analog CVs in the ER-301.

This makes me wonder though, whether a future version of the Teletype firmware can do the FB passthrough as a built-in feature with no need for scripting...
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Post by Cobramatic » Wed May 29, 2019 8:42 pm

starthief wrote:Whoah, 93% CPU is more than I'd have risked playing live. It worked out though :)
Totally agree - I would not have risked it either for a high stakes performance, but this was very low key with a friendly audience of fellow Aussie Wigglers so no worries there!

For me it was more an experiment to see how far you can realistically push the 301. I'd stay clear of anything approaching 90% CPU in future - the pops and crackles alone are not worth it.

I will say that it is very refreshing to do a set with essentially only a handful of modules though.

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Post by geremyf » Wed May 29, 2019 9:09 pm

Was the 93% on the 48KHz firmware or 96KHz? I'm betting 48 but I just figured I'd ask anyway.

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Post by Cobramatic » Thu May 30, 2019 7:53 pm

geremyf wrote:Was the 93% on the 48KHz firmware or 96KHz? I'm betting 48 but I just figured I'd ask anyway.
Yeah, it was definitely the 48Khz firmware !
I haven't been game to try the 96Khz yet.

I was also running on the v0.3.25-stable (Jasmine) version.

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