DivKid Mutes

Cwejman, Livewire, TipTop Audio, Doepfer etc... Get your euro on!

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Markthom
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Post by Markthom » Thu Mar 07, 2019 2:40 pm

Jalopy wrote:So... having received a shipping confirmation today and having reviewed the concerns regarding vactrols - How can one test a vactrol before committing it to the build? I read the page 22 in the PS3100 thread linked in the above post and did not see it explicitly discussed.

Thanks!
Jalopy, If you bought the full kit from MA, you will likely not need to worry, both myself and the other guy with an issue bought the pcb/panel and had to source the other parts - in my case this was because the full kit was sold out. I'd guess you will have no issues :)

For the record it's also important to point out that both Ben and Befaco have been ace in terms of communication and resolution, after reaching out Ben put me in contact with Manu at Befaco, after a couple of emails and some checks we came to the conclusion the issue is with the vactrols not with the PCB and being the lovely folks they are, they have sent out 4 replacement Vactrols which I'm just waiting on arriving.

Given the the vactrols I had the issue with came from Thonk, not as part of the kit, thats an excellent level of support in my book, above and beyond what they needed to do, so kudos to Befaco and Ben.

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JakoGreyshire
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Post by JakoGreyshire » Thu Mar 07, 2019 3:28 pm

Jalopy wrote:So... having received a shipping confirmation today and having reviewed the concerns regarding vactrols - How can one test a vactrol before committing it to the build? I read the page 22 in the PS3100 thread linked in the above post and did not see it explicitly discussed.

Thanks!

Good question really....I haven't thought that far through since I haven't had any issues myself but lets figure it out shall we?....

It's probably real easy to test them first rather than have to desolder them and fiddle with all that troubleshooting.... I normally test all components while I'm building modules before soldering them into place..

After reading the Ps3100 thread I posted again and thinking about what makes a vactrol, I'm guessing that a way to test a vactrol would be to supply a voltage to the LED and then test the resistance of the LDR. I'm not sure how much you know about electronics so, I'll break it down for everyone, eh?
I'm no expert but I know a little...
LEDs have polarity and probably require a maximum of 3 volts.. So, One could find the polarity of the LED side of the vactrol by doing a continuity test with a multimeter... Vactrols usually have a marking on them to indicate polarity, and if you know how to identify that then you won't need to do a continuity test. However a continuity test will also identify a working or faulty LED... When you know which leg of the LED is positive and which one is negative, then you could probably touch those legs to the positive and negative sides of a 3V coin cell battery...

The LDR (Light Dependent Resistor) side of the vactrol is not polarity dependent. So then you could use a multimeter to test the resistance while the LED has a charge from the coin cell battery. If they all test out to be around the same resistance then they are probably good... If one of them tests out to have a lot more resistance then the others then maybe the resistance is too much to let enough light through to the rest of the circuit...


Here is the quote from the other thread, and I've put in bold some of the important clues:
davebr wrote: Then you can just tack another one in and see how it differs. I didn't write down the actual resistance but a "good" one at whatever voltage/current I ran them at was a couple of hundred ohms, say 190ohms. The "bad" one was a couple of K ohms, like maybe 2300ohms. It was a big difference. I've matched vactrols before for some of the Buchla builds and I never saw that much of a difference. It was always something like 2X, not 10X.

Dave
So,I'm also guessing that the current supplied to the LED is not critical that it is 3V.. Just DON'T go over 3V... So if you don't have a 3V coin cell battery lying around you could use a single AA or AAA battery as they are 1.5V... The important thing here is that you use the same battery to test the Vactrols(same Volts)...

I haven't looked at the Vactrol datasheets and I don't know what voltage they need to function... I'm just guessing about the voltage and erring on the safe side.. So, looking at the datasheets is always advised when testing or understanding components...

As I said, I'm not expert, but I hope this helps... Any Pedantic rants and or corrections about my testing method are welcome as I just made it up as I was going along.....

Receiving bad vactrols is not as common as one might think. Now that a few wigglers "might" have received these bad vactrols, it could be safe to assume that the quota of bad vactrols have been fulfilled and no one else will have these problems..

:despair: :despair:
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Jalopy
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Post by Jalopy » Thu Mar 07, 2019 9:50 pm

Good news about the hopeful component integrity from the kit. I hate sourcing parts for builds for that very reason. JakoGreyshire thanks for the timely and thoughtful response. Will be sure to check back once I get my grimy paws onnit!

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Zerstorte Zelle
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Post by Zerstorte Zelle » Thu Mar 07, 2019 10:34 pm

My diy mutes is on the way. Psyched.

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Post by Halfgeleider » Fri Mar 08, 2019 7:03 am

Ok reading along here, i asked some advice last week with the guys from thonk, because thats where my kits came from. They told me to reflow my solderpoint but that didnt work... Now i read these newer posts so i guess i have the same issue with the vactrols? vactrols that dont work, strange, especially when you see the pricing of these components
I ordered 10 pieces at befaco because they where out of stock on Thonk. Any one know of troubles with the vactrols from befaco?

@ Ben, what can be done with those faulty vactrols from thonk?

Thanks in advance to everyone involved, i need 4 of these mutes in my case, a must have it is! :hihi:

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Post by Just another rookie » Fri Mar 08, 2019 12:22 pm

This is the module that broke my streak of builds that worked first time!

And I thought it would be a simple affair
:hmm:

Anyway......I love this thing, the circuit appears to work.
Powers up.....switches function, as expected.

However, I have the same problem as mentioned above.
The leds do not illuminate in any case.
Placement follows the silkscreen.
Negative to the edge, positive innermost.

All important parts as per BOM.
Switches from tme. Leds are kingbright 2mm posts.

Have checked and double checked;
led orientation
Inter board connects (8pin) for continuity etc.

Really baffled. My diy knowledge is not that great but I’ve a few far more complex builds under my belt.
Even the zlob min-eq is more difficult to build than this!

Otherwise it’s a great unit......

Please help if you can.
Thanks in advance.

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Post by Just another rookie » Fri Mar 08, 2019 12:25 pm

Well! Having read the above!

Looks like one way or another I will get some help!

Hooray!

Cos I want at least one more of these!

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ben_hex
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Post by ben_hex » Sun Mar 10, 2019 10:08 am

Hello all,

just to be clear LEDs just show signal activity audio/cv/gate etc at the input. That might be clear, I don't want to tell you something you all know. But I make silly mistakes with stuff like that sometimes so just wanting to be clear.

Speak to Thonk where you bought the kit about the vactrols and support. That way we can official follow through emails and support.

Of course discuss anything here, but just don't use it as an official support request for issues/faulty units/vactrols etc. Emailing the store you bought it from is always first port of call. They'll then pass it through to us (us being me and/or Befaco, Befaco will handle everything).

If there's a bad batch of vactrols I apologise, all of that is out of my control but everything will get sorted, I've full faith in everyone involved in the project to look after everyone. :tu:
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Paranormal Patroler
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Post by Paranormal Patroler » Sun Mar 10, 2019 10:32 am

ben_hex wrote:If there's a bad batch of vactrols I apologise, all of that is out of my control but everything will get sorted, I've full faith in everyone involved in the project to look after everyone. :tu:
:hug:

Couldn't be happier with mine!
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ben_hex
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Post by ben_hex » Sun Mar 10, 2019 10:58 am

:hug: indeed. Big love for the modular scene. Amazing to go from where I started to now. Couldn't happen without all the cool people along the way.
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Post by Paranormal Patroler » Sun Mar 10, 2019 3:09 pm

Proud of you mate. Looking forward to what else your line of modules has in store for us! :party:
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Post by Plugler » Mon Mar 11, 2019 2:38 pm

Any chance to get one of the Full DIY Kits in Europe before the upcoming (if no wonder happens) hard brexit?

Thonk.co.uk is sold out since mid february. Since then I'm on the waiting list, but did'nt got any message yet.

After a hard brexit, the full DIY Kit from Thonk will probably cost more then the assembled version from a German / French webshop...
:bang:

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Zerstorte Zelle
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Post by Zerstorte Zelle » Wed Mar 13, 2019 9:08 am

Mutes kit appeared yesterday. After knocking it together (very easy and straightforward build) I’m pretty excited about the potential. Vactrols all functioning here. Almost like a manual triggered decay envelope using momentary side. Pretty great idea! Thanks again.

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Post by rexxxx » Wed Mar 13, 2019 9:16 am

Question: On the PCB/Panel DIY.... What effect would using homemade vactorals (LED/LDR-shrink tube wrap) have on the response? I use them on quite a few DIY modules and get excellent results? Workable or not recommended? Cheers on the project. Rexxxx

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Post by Halfgeleider » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:24 pm

Got me some vactrols from befaco, but no marks, lines or symbols on these... how can i tell which is + or - :hmm: ? Multimeter maybe?

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Post by Halfgeleider » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:36 pm

[Image
Image
There seems to be a slanted side on the top left of the vactrol when placed sideways, could that be the LED side?[/img]

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Post by Halfgeleider » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:38 pm

Think i got it, there is one longer leg, being the + i suppose

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Post by Befacosynth » Fri Mar 15, 2019 7:04 am

After receiving a few reports of failed builds, we found that we made a HUGE MISTAKE in our BOM, Stating the wrong Vactrol reference.

The right reference is VTL5C1 not VTL5C3.......

For anyone out there that got the wrong vactrols and a non working module, please drop me a mail at manu@befaco.org and I will be sending a set of vactrols ASAP.

Sorry for the mess..... :hail:
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Post by Just another rookie » Fri Mar 15, 2019 8:45 am

Yeah!
I just got my email!

Absolute relief.
Glad it wasn’t me! I thought my luck had run out!

I’ll say it first, you guys handled it like true professionals.

Thanks for all you’ve done!
:yay:

....and don’t worry Manu, it happens to the best of us!
What’s the old saying....a man who never made a mistake, never made a thing!
I certainly will not be holding a grudge!

Thanks to both Manu and Steve.

All the best jamie.
:banana: :nana:

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Markthom
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Post by Markthom » Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:10 am

Just logged back in to report that I recieved some replacement Vactrols from Befaco at the start of the week, fitted them and it works like a charm....

As Jamie says above, mistakes are easily made and great communication and support has been provided to alleviate any issues.

The best bit of all is that the module itself is fab, really nice response when bringing things in and out of the mix, and the send option using 2 channels normalled is great.

Bravo to all involved...

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Markthom
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Post by Markthom » Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:11 am

Halfgeleider wrote:Think i got it, there is one longer leg, being the + i suppose
Yes, if you consult the Build doc, it tells you the short leg is -ve.

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Post by Halfgeleider » Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:51 pm

Thanks Manu for clearing things up and the quick response. Desoldering the vactrols and waiting for the new ones....

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GNSDG
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Post by GNSDG » Fri Mar 15, 2019 5:03 pm

Are these available anywhere right now? Was going to order one a couple weeks ago from (I think) modular addict, and now they are sold out. : (
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Post by Just another rookie » Thu Mar 21, 2019 12:02 pm

Hurray!

My replacements arrived today!
To be fair it took me a while to sort my reply so....
Good job you lot, I’d say!
In the mean time, after everything was sorted,
I bought another pcb and panel set.


Image


All I need now is a bigger rack.

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ben_hex
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Post by ben_hex » Fri Mar 22, 2019 7:00 am

Paranormal Patroler wrote:Proud of you mate. Looking forward to what else your line of modules has in store for us! :party:
Cheers mate! Certainly lots of idea :)
Plugler wrote:Any chance to get one of the Full DIY Kits in Europe before the upcoming (if no wonder happens) hard brexit?

Thonk.co.uk is sold out since mid february. Since then I'm on the waiting list, but did'nt got any message yet.

After a hard brexit, the full DIY Kit from Thonk will probably cost more then the assembled version from a German / French webshop...
:bang:
Not going to happen before Brexit, these are currently under manufacturing for a second batch. However it's all sold and sorted through Befaco in Barcelona, Spain. So within the EU you should have no differences. Leaf Audio are interested I think so DIY kits can come from them. I can't speak for Thonk but knowing they're great people I'm sure they'll do as much as they can to have a minimal affect for customers anywhere in the world.

A huge thanks to Befaco for sorting Vactrol issues and everyone for reporting back everything is ok. Really appreciate it :tu:
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