Piston Honda MKIII dual morphing wavetable oscillator

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Sinamsis
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Post by Sinamsis » Sun Feb 10, 2019 9:38 pm

xthrasherx wrote:
synonymist wrote:
Trying to buy a Piston Honda Mark II now...
This is the correct answer :zen:

Very happy with the mkII and mkIII. Lots of fun to be had
Me too. I regret selling my mk I. They're all different and great.

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Post by xthrasherx » Sun Feb 10, 2019 9:55 pm

I wish I had room for all 3... barely have room for the 2 PH and the mkI Hertz Donut. The joys of constraint.
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Post by synonymist » Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:30 am

xthrasherx wrote:
Sinamsis wrote:
xthrasherx wrote:
synonymist wrote:
Trying to buy a Piston Honda Mark II now...
This is the correct answer :zen:

Very happy with the mkII and mkIII. Lots of fun to be had
Me too. I regret selling my mk I. They're all different and great.
I wish I had room for all 3... barely have room for the 2 PH and the mkI Hertz Donut. The joys of constraint.
Ha! Well I did make a deal. If it goes well, I should have a NOS Pinston Honda Mark II in hand in about two weeks.

That will give me time to decide whether I can bear to cut more from my cases to accommodate it, or will alternate the Mark III and Mark II in the same spot. :|

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Post by xthrasherx » Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:35 am

synonymist wrote:
xthrasherx wrote:
Sinamsis wrote:
xthrasherx wrote:
synonymist wrote:
Trying to buy a Piston Honda Mark II now...
This is the correct answer :zen:

Very happy with the mkII and mkIII. Lots of fun to be had
Me too. I regret selling my mk I. They're all different and great.
I wish I had room for all 3... barely have room for the 2 PH and the mkI Hertz Donut. The joys of constraint.
Ha! Well I did make a deal. If it goes well, I should have a NOS Pinston Honda Mark II in hand in about two weeks.

That will give me time to decide whether I can bear to cut more from my cases to accommodate it, or will alternate the Mark III and Mark II in the same spot. :|
The PHII has an LFO mode plus the ability for either of them to process the other makes for a lot of possibilities beyond being another voice in your system. Check out this video if you haven’t already. The PHII is used to modulate the PHIII a lot in that video.

[video][/video]
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Post by synonymist » Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:19 pm

xthrasherx wrote:
synonymist wrote: ...If it goes well, I should have a NOS Pinston Honda Mark II in hand in about two weeks.

That will give me time to decide whether I can bear to cut more from my cases to accommodate it, or will alternate the Mark III and Mark II in the same spot. :|
The PHII has an LFO mode plus the ability for either of them to process the other makes for a lot of possibilities beyond being another voice in your system. Check out this video if you haven’t already. The PHII is used to modulate the PHIII a lot in that video.

[video][/video]
Thank you for that. I had not seen it before.

The fact is that the ratio of primary sound sources to other stuff (CV or audio manipulation or routing, etc.) is still too high in my modular synth. Partly that's because I want the sheer sonic variety, not simultaneity. But I am at the practical limit of that approach, given my space constraints.

That said, the prospect of using Piston Honda III and II together is enticing. So I will see what I can do. :)

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Post by Switchzik » Sun Feb 24, 2019 11:59 am

Hi all,

I'm ready diging the sounds of the TZFM on the rubicon 2 in this video.



Can the PH mkIII sound similar ?

I tried with my just friends which has also a digital TZFM but so far I couldn't manage to get so soft and more woody sound - Everything sounded nice but more harsh and metalic.
Last edited by Switchzik on Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by synonymist » Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:33 pm

Switchzik wrote:Hi all,

I'm ready diging the sounds of the TZFM on the rubicon 2 in this video.



Can the PH mkIII sound the similar ?

I tried with my just friends which had also a digital TZFM but so far I couldn't manage to get so soft and more woody sound - Everything sounded nice but more harsh and metalic.
Hello. Although I did not listen to the video you cited, I do own both modules. In my experience of them, the Rubicon 2 and the Piston Honda Mark III have TZFM in common, but sonically are otherwise fundamentally different oscillators.

The Rubicon 2 is a single analog thru-zero oscillator. The Piston Honda Mark III is a dual wavetable oscillator. If I knew only that about them, I would expect nearly everything about their respective voices to differ, including their TZFM sounds.

As for metallic sounds, the Rubicon 2 does them beautifully. To make hi-hat and metallics sounds, especially very fine and tiny ones, I like to use the Black Wavetable VCO as the modulator for the Rubicon 2 TZFM.

I make a distinction between "harsh" and "metallic". You were referring to the character of the sound, not to a class of timbres, I understand. But in my descriptors for sonic character, the two are not always coincident. For example, the metallics (class) sounds I make with Rubicon 2 are sweet (character) sounding.

Conversely, in my short time with Piston Honda Mark III so far, I find it apt to make timbres of any type that are harsh sounding. Yet it has a nice range between sweet and harsh, including its TZFM.

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Post by autopoiesis » Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:36 pm

Switchzik wrote:Hi all,

I'm ready diging the sounds of the TZFM on the rubicon 2 in this video.



Can the PH mkIII sound the similar ?

I tried with my just friends which had also a digital TZFM but so far I couldn't manage to get so soft and more woody sound - Everything sounded nice but more harsh and metalic.
you can get to similar territory, especially since you're able to use more complex sinusoid waveforms for either of the FM operators on the PHMK3, but FM on digital oscillators will always have a bit less liveliness to it than with analog oscillators. and i've found that somehow the PHMK3 doesn't support as much audibly deep TZFM as i have gotten out of my shapeshifter or heard from a rubicon when pushing hard on all their FM indices.

in short the FM on the piston honda is a wonderful tone shaping feature but i wouldn't try to lean on this for scratching an itch you have from rubicon demos.

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Post by synonymist » Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:53 pm

autopoiesis wrote:
Switchzik wrote:Hi all,

I'm ready diging the sounds of the TZFM on the rubicon 2 in this video.



Can the PH mkIII sound the similar ?

I tried with my just friends which had also a digital TZFM but so far I couldn't manage to get so soft and more woody sound - Everything sounded nice but more harsh and metalic.
you can get to similar territory, especially since you're able to use more complex sinusoid waveforms for either of the FM operators on the PHMK3, but FM on digital oscillators will always have a bit less liveliness to it than with analog oscillators. and i've found that somehow the PHMK3 doesn't support as much audibly deep TZFM as i have gotten out of my shapeshifter or heard from a rubicon when pushing hard on all their FM indices.

in short the FM on the piston honda is a wonderful tone shaping feature but i wouldn't try to lean on this for scratching an itch you have from rubicon demos.
Hello. Well said. This is the correct answer. Thank you!

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Post by Switchzik » Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:19 am

Thanks autopoiesis and synonymist for your answers.
I don't have enough space left in my rack for Rubicon amd PHIII, I was thinking about a PHIII and Dixie2+ combo but those Rubicon's tones are so delicious :eek:

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Post by synonymist » Thu Mar 07, 2019 2:20 am

synonymist wrote:...the prospect of using Piston Honda III and II together is enticing. So I will see what I can do. :)
Well I did get that done, though each is in a different case. I have yet to play them together. Something to look forward to. 8-)

Meanwhile, Piston Honda Mark III is making fantastic sounds with Tš-L. Here they are with nearly all their jacks in use, in a tangle with Kinks and Black Joystick Controller.

Except for Filter 8's percolating, sometimes squinchy percussion in the center (which the other modules also influence), PH III and Tš-L are making all sounds. Some of what sounds like spatial processing is actually PH III. Session notes are at each track's webpage:

https://soundcloud.com/synonymist/tau-cetian-song

https://soundcloud.com/synonymist/tau-cetian-dance

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Post by Stashy » Thu Mar 07, 2019 2:50 am

MK3 paired with Zadar is always the right move.

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Post by dooj88 » Thu Mar 07, 2019 3:27 pm

there are some amazingly cool and fucked up sounds in this thread. much higher concentration awesome than other wavetable oscillator threads. so this is where all the weirdos hang out eh? :hail: :hail: :hail:

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Post by rosten » Fri Mar 08, 2019 3:40 pm

Hopefully this is the right place to ask this somewhat dumb question.

The PHIII is my first wavetable synth. I'm loving it so far (and honestly have spent as much time using it as a waveshaper as I have using it for the wavetables).

I don't really understand how it differs from other wavetable synths or what would make it sound "more aggressive"?

If you loaded the same waves into this and a Synthesis Technology wavetable machine would they sound different? Is it the cross-modding or something about the wave is read out or converted to audio signal. Educate me!

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Post by sharkminusbear » Fri Mar 08, 2019 4:14 pm

Stashy wrote:MK3 paired with Zadar is always the right move.
That's been my experience as well, some really cool rhythmic shapes to modulate the wavetables.

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Post by tommygee » Fri Mar 08, 2019 4:34 pm

tommygee wrote:Spend the weekend with my new PH MK3, and was able to compare it side by side with the PH MK2. The new version does sounds more hi-fi like others have mentioned. More clear high end, but also a bigger overall sound. I always loved using the MK2 version for more mellow, melodic stuff with some of the top end filtered off. The MK3 doesn't disappoint here - it's awesome.

One question: when I trigger the random function with a gate, and have selected "waves only", unison modes gets randomized as well. Is there a way to avoid that ?
After spending some time with the MK3 I have to admit, that I miss the character of the MK2 - and regret I let it go.

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Post by synonymist » Sun Mar 10, 2019 8:17 am

rosten wrote:Hopefully this is the right place to ask this somewhat dumb question.

The PHIII is my first wavetable synth. I'm loving it so far (and honestly have spent as much time using it as a waveshaper as I have using it for the wavetables).

I don't really understand how it differs from other wavetable synths or what would make it sound "more aggressive"?

If you loaded the same waves into this and a Synthesis Technology wavetable machine would they sound different? Is it the cross-modding or something about the wave is read out or converted to audio signal. Educate me!
Hello. At least part of the answer is in @mt3's recent explanation to me:
mt3 wrote:Please note PHmk2 has 8-bit wavetables and PHmk3 utilizes 16-bit wavetables. There will be inherent differences from the bit depth alone.
Compare that to Synthesis Technology's description of its E352 Cloud Terrarium (http://synthtech.com/eurorack/E352/):

"16-bit wavetables (versus 8-bit for the E350) for 5x lower noise & THD"

Generalizing, then: As these module designers gradually walk their circuit designs down the path of technical refinement, in successive generations of the circuits, the audio made by the latest generation is to a meaningful degree measurably and possibly audibly different from the prior ones.

As such, the question would be not about 'if the same wavetables were loaded in IME and Syntech modules', but 'if the same wavetables were loaded in IME and Synthech modules of the same technological generation'.

Then in practical terms, and as always, there is a difference if the player hears a difference. :)

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Post by xthrasherx » Sun Mar 10, 2019 8:39 am

Forgot to post this here, but the Piston Honda has really become the heart of my system. Here both the MKII and MKIII are being used as waveshapers.

The PH mkIII is being used on a guitar track which was then split and then fed into a Metasonix R56 reverb and a Metasonix R57 & Casper Electronics / Bastl Dark Matter.

The PH mkII was also used as a waveshaper. It was fed a signal from the Zerosum Inertia Noise Sorcerer (a thyratron based sound source). This was brought into the mix by a looping envelope with no specific tempo / timing.

Tracked and filmed live after a couple of practice takes to work our general ideas.

[video][/video]
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Post by synonymist » Sun Mar 10, 2019 8:41 am

Here is a simple piece that features Piston Honda Mark III making fairly conventional sounds. I like them!

PH III does the melody and bass voices, which open the piece.

The melody here is an example of PH III's expressiveness under a combination of automated and manual CV. Each kind of source affects the sound's timbral and temporal aspects both.

The nice, fat bass here shows that a little time spent patching an external FM source with PH III (for example the classic modulator via VCA/EG to carrier FM in) is well rewarded.

Detailed session notes are at the track's webpage:

https://soundcloud.com/synonymist/jaunty-like-giant

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Post by synonymist » Sun Mar 10, 2019 8:52 am

xthrasherx wrote:Forgot to post this here, but the Piston Honda has really become the heart of my system. Here both the MKII and MKIII are being used as waveshapers.

The PH mkIII is being used on a guitar track which was then split and then fed into a Metasonix R56 reverb and a Metasonix R57 & Casper Electronics / Bastl Dark Matter.

The PH mkII was also used as a waveshaper. It was fed a signal from the Zerosum Inertia Noise Sorcerer (a thyratron based sound source). This was brought into the mix by a looping envelope with no specific tempo / timing.

Tracked and filmed live after a couple of practice takes to work our general ideas.

[video][/video]
Lovely! My only wish was that it didn't end suddenly. I wanted to hear a long fadeout. :mrgreen:

Your example is a good reminder for me. Thank you. A longtime bass guitarist, when I got into Eurorack last January, I meant to merge my bass and synth work anew in this context (I did so at various times in many years past, but with different kinds of synths). From waveshapers like Piston Honda, to filters, to samplers like Morphagene, there is a lot to do.

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Post by xthrasherx » Sun Mar 10, 2019 9:06 am

synonymist wrote: Lovely! My only wish was that it didn't end suddenly. I wanted to hear a long fadeout. :mrgreen:

Your example is a good reminder for me. Thank you. A longtime bass guitarist, when I got into Eurorack last January, I meant to merge my bass and synth work anew in this context (I did so at various times in many years past, but with different kinds of synths). From waveshapers like Piston Honda, to filters, to samplers like Morphagene, there is a lot to do.
Thanks! I was under some constraints with what the other artist wanted so while I agree a nice long fadeout would have been nice, I think was already pushing the desired track length. In context of the album, it should still have that fadeout feel (I left ample tail on there for the video).

I also got into modular synths after years playing both bass and guitar, but admittedly have done very little processing work like this. All my personal work has been synths & modular for percussion and atmosphere paired up with bass and guitar in more traditional signal paths (amp, cab, mic or profiler depending on context).
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Post by synonymist » Sun Mar 10, 2019 1:33 pm

xthrasherx wrote:
synonymist wrote: Lovely! My only wish was that it didn't end suddenly. I wanted to hear a long fadeout. :mrgreen:

Your example is a good reminder for me. Thank you. A longtime bass guitarist, when I got into Eurorack last January, I meant to merge my bass and synth work anew in this context (I did so at various times in many years past, but with different kinds of synths). From waveshapers like Piston Honda, to filters, to samplers like Morphagene, there is a lot to do.
Thanks! I was under some constraints with what the other artist wanted so while I agree a nice long fadeout would have been nice, I think was already pushing the desired track length. In context of the album, it should still have that fadeout feel (I left ample tail on there for the video).

I also got into modular synths after years playing both bass and guitar, but admittedly have done very little processing work like this. All my personal work has been synths & modular for percussion and atmosphere paired up with bass and guitar in more traditional signal paths (amp, cab, mic or profiler depending on context).
My pleasure. Keep going! It's all good, I think; any approach or technique. Good luck with the album. Please let us know when it is released.

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Post by synonymist » Sun Mar 17, 2019 1:16 am

Just two weeks in, it may be that I have a greater affinity with Piston Honda Mark II, but I'm not certain yet. Meanwhile Mark III continues to impress me with both its sheer power and its ability to be expressive.

Here is Piston Honda Mark III as two parts of a four-part arrangement. The rest is Loquelic Iteratis for the central bass and Tš-L for the pretty ostinato. Session notes are at the track's webpage:

https://soundcloud.com/synonymist/one-fine-day

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Post by synonymist » Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:53 am

Deeper still. So much sound, faceted and nuanced. A few observations about Piston Honda Mark III as of yesterday:

⦁ Though excellent as both a primary sound source and a waveshaper, I find its strongest suit as a sound maker is with an external modulator for FM. Extreme FM can be nice; but for depth, a small range just above the onset of FM can be the sweet spot.

⦁ There was no more room on the panel, so morph enable was moved to into a menu. That is fair and the feature is usable, but I prefer the Mark II hardware interface.

⦁ The settings in the tone menu can be quite impactful with the right sounds. I find it useful to revisit them occasionally during protracted sound design.


In this short piece, all of the above is represented. PH3 makes the shuddering, warped, glassy drone and the mercurial, squishy bass. Really... it is a deep module. Session notes are at the track's webpage:

https://soundcloud.com/synonymist/rapscallion-returns

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Post by synonymist » Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:24 am

Scanning this thread now, I see that at least a few people loaded non-stock waveforms into their Piston Honda Mark III. Yesterday I did and it was easy. Thanks to IME for making this feature so usable.

In three or four loads, I got one error. But I quickly concluded that I had not written the wave files on the SD card properly, corrected that and got no more errors.

I used whatever banks were made publicly available in WaveEdit. Since I did not make a note of which I chose, I have no attribution; but I thank the people who created or curated and published the banks. One I used was PPG waves, I think, but the rest definitely were homemade.

After my first tries at assembling a wavetable, I learned that I really want the first waveform in the first bank to be a sine wave. :) Each of my wavetable oscillator modules features this, so I guess it is a best practice.

Also I learned that the art is to find a good balance between gradation and discontinuity, both within each bank and across banks within a wavetable. Seeing this, I gained a newfound appreciation of wavetable oscillator designers' decisions about their wavetables. They can't please everyone or account for all scenarios, but they strike a balance and impart a personality to their module.

For my PH3, I settled on a set of waveforms that is less edgy than the stock set, but is similarly flexible and expressive. Eventually I will try other sonic directions. Meanwhile I remain highly impressed with PH3 as an instrument: mature, multifarious, flexible, beautiful, deep.

Here are two tracks based on one patch featuring PH3 loaded with non-stock waveforms. Slightly modulated by Tš-L, Piston Honda Mark III makes all the sound except the subdued bass voice (just left of center) which is Tš-L.

The first track is short. The second is long. Best for the patient or curious, it will reward with nice details. Session notes are at each track's webpage:

https://soundcloud.com/synonymist/thin- ... et-prelude

https://soundcloud.com/synonymist/thin-in-the-thicket

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