Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

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Muse FTW
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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Muse FTW » Thu Jan 23, 2020 5:28 pm

Mine's in the mail. Will probably receive it tomorrow and get it racked. Super excited.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by corbetta » Thu Jan 23, 2020 6:21 pm

Once people have their hands on them I’d love to hear how the speed control responds to CV

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Hovercraft » Tue Jan 28, 2020 12:33 pm

Lubadh arrived yesterday. Love the design and the sound quality is great, but one issue has popped up. Scrubbing through samples using the Start control clicks like crazy on playback. Has anyone else noticed the same issue? Seems like when the playback heads are moved through the buffer, they don't automatically finish and start at the zero crossing of the waveforms. Other than that-Lubadh is fantastic--especially love the aux out that lets you crossfade between both decks.

Speed control is not 1V/oct, but you can sequence in the 0.5x, 1X, 2X zones for harmonically-related tones.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by StateAzure » Tue Jan 28, 2020 1:20 pm

Hovercraft wrote:
Tue Jan 28, 2020 12:33 pm
Lubadh arrived yesterday. Love the design and the sound quality is great, but one issue has popped up. Scrubbing through samples using the Start control clicks like crazy on playback. Has anyone else noticed the same issue? Seems like when the playback heads are moved through the buffer, they don't automatically finish and start at the zero crossing of the waveforms. Other than that-Lubadh is fantastic--especially love the aux out that lets you crossfade between both decks.

Speed control is not 1V/oct, but you can sequence in the 0.5x, 1X, 2X zones for harmonically-related tones.
Yeah my module did exactly the same, glitchy and very clicky when using Start and/or Length, hence i'm returning it. I was fairly certain I'd like this module, as Arbhar is freakin' amazing..but pretty disappointed with this one.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by cackland » Tue Jan 28, 2020 1:28 pm

IMO, that's a pretty big issue. Considering the whole point is to scrub and if you are getting these issues, yeah a no go for me too. I wonder if Jason will comment or knows about this and will provide an update?

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by bc3 » Tue Jan 28, 2020 1:53 pm

Yep, super clicky here too when adjusting the start and length points. Hoping this is something that can be addressed as the audio fidelity of the module sounds very good on first drive last evening. Also the LED feedback is some of the best I've ever seen in a eurorack module, very fluid and intuitive. 8-)
Last edited by bc3 on Tue Jan 28, 2020 1:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by brenbren444 » Tue Jan 28, 2020 1:55 pm

Per usual from Instruo the front panel is awesome. Demo's sound incredible!
Pedal Drawings
www.themaneb.com
Zing :cloud:

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Hovercraft » Tue Jan 28, 2020 2:58 pm

StateAzure wrote:
Tue Jan 28, 2020 1:20 pm

Yeah my module did exactly the same, glitchy and very clicky when using Start and/or Length, hence i'm returning it. I was fairly certain I'd like this module, as Arbhar is freakin' amazing..but pretty disappointed with this one.
Also love the Arbhar, and my immediate thought testing Lubadh was--this is so bad, it must be a firmware bug. My experience is also colored by getting one of the first batch of ER-301's and watching Brian work through DSP issues. The only clicking on the ER-301 loopers is when the playback and recording heads pass each other in the buffer--or the memory/cpu are heavily loaded. Hopefully, this issue can be addressed with a firmware fix relatively soon. If not, mine will also be going back.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Innerself2007 » Wed Jan 29, 2020 8:40 am

Yes getting the clicks as well here. I'm thinking maybe adding an envelope and vca to the output to maybe tame the clicks? I haven't had much time to play with the module.
Some things still are unclear for me as there is little information with the quick start guide. How do you record from say reel A to reel B and back?
I can see the possibilities with this module but I need to spend more time with it and work out the kinks, without a proper manual I'm struggling to figure this thing out.
Arbhar is almost perfect and makes complete sense to me, this will take some time I'm thinking.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Ray Finkle » Wed Jan 29, 2020 8:55 am

Innerself2007 wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 8:40 am
How do you record from say reel A to reel B and back?
https://www.instruomodular.com/wp-conte ... -web-2.pdf

Page 2 of the guide, the little diagram in the bottom left (under normalised signal path) shows how to do this. I've had it doing this using this method essentially putting Out1->In2, Out2->In1

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Innerself2007 » Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:06 am

Ray Finkle wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 8:55 am
Innerself2007 wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 8:40 am
How do you record from say reel A to reel B and back?
https://www.instruomodular.com/wp-conte ... -web-2.pdf

Page 2 of the guide, the little diagram in the bottom left (under normalised signal path) shows how to do this. I've had it doing this using this method essentially putting Out1->In2, Out2->In1
Thanks for the quick reply, I did see the diagram but its not making much sense to me, Do I need to physically patch output one into input 2? Do I need to do something with the input trimmers? I tried things last night but was unable to get reel one sound to reel 2 and record. I didn't try physically patching though.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by vailsy » Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:20 am

Innerself2007 wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 8:40 am
Yes getting the clicks as well here. I'm thinking maybe adding an envelope and vca to the output to maybe tame the clicks? I haven't had much time to play with the module.
Some things still are unclear for me as there is little information with the quick start guide. How do you record from say reel A to reel B and back?
I can see the possibilities with this module but I need to spend more time with it and work out the kinks, without a proper manual I'm struggling to figure this thing out.
Arbhar is almost perfect and makes complete sense to me, this will take some time I'm thinking.
hmm not good to hear this since clicks are a complete no-go for me, but that seems totally fixable with a firmware update so i'll be keeping mine when it arrives

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by robbbiecloset » Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:33 am

How are folks finding the noise floor on this?

I got mine earlier this week and just started to play with it last night. Tons of immediate fun, but it's loud with nothing plugged in to it / nothing coming out of it.

I have a small case powered by a row power 40 with lots of digital modules, but I am well under the limit (close to about 2/3 at the moment), so I was hoping I'd be ok.

I'm in the middle of moving house so I have no second case to try it in, but will ASAP. Thought I'd see if anyone else has had similar experiences though.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by pinMode » Wed Jan 29, 2020 11:29 am

Hey folks!

I’d like to thank everyone for their support and enthusiasm throughout the development of this project. The Lubadh and arbhar represent a big step up for Instruo in terms of the sheer time spent in development but also in working collaboratively with other instrument designers to bring these modules to life. It’s been a long process to reach this point and these instruments will continue to develop long after their initial releases. A prime benefit of the hybrid digital/analogue platforms used in these modules is their potential for continued refinement and improvement as a result of the ongoing work of the developers and also in response to feedback from users. My role has been interface design, visual feedback and the actual hardware design. All the workings under the hood has been the real work. Kian, who some of you may have met at Superbooth the last few years, is also the co-designer of the SCÍON and Vinca. He is the reason Lubadh exists! This has been an amazing module to collaborate on and it’s only going to get better over time.

Some folk have got in touch with questions raised in this thread so I thought it might be helpful if I jump in and clarify some points, chat through some of design choices of the module and what is to come in the future in regards to firmware support and expansion.

To begin, here’s a bit of background to where the module came from.
Analogue tape machines are the obvious starting point. There are many samplers and loopers out there both in and out of Eurorack. The goal with Lubadh was to bring something new to the table in terms of control interface and methods of working with captured audio.

There are many iconic tape compositions, with equally iconic techniques tied to them, that served as reference and inspiration from the get go. Pieces like Reich’s “It’s Gonna Rain” and Bernard Permegiani’s “De Nature Sonorum” are a couple of superb examples. Both these pieces were created in the late 60s, early 70s. Listening to them today, there is much modern music that exists in much the same territory, but considering the tools and techniques at that time… It really is another level of craft beyond just the composition element. Music production has exponentially become quicker and more accessible.
I highly recommend checking out this clip of Mr Muller. He was one of Stockhausen’s assistants.

In the video he’s improvising with a few tape loops in a demonstration. It really shows the scale of that method of working.

So with all that to draw from, what stood out was the technique of using multiple tape machines and asynchronous loops in a very physical way.
The Lubadh is our tribute to these ways of working. With some extra capabilities thrown in that were only possible in the analogue realm with the most specialised equipment such as rotating tape head recorders.

How we approached the looping engine:
The choice of how to handle transitions in any looping sampler is always a tricky one as each method comes with its own advantages and disadvantages. Windowing techniques such as those employed in the arbhar where shapes such as a gaussian curve are stored in lookup tables and applied as an amplitude envelope over the audio played; whilst offering smooth click-free playback, they result in considerable amplitude drops. This may be less disruptive to shorter grains of audio, but smooth playback with gaussian windowing can only really be achieved when you have multiple overlapping playheads which act to smear any amplitude loss. This technique of course introduce phase artefacts which are part of the beauty of granular synthesis’s timbre. With no overlapping playheads like in granular, any transients or sharp attacks at the beginning or end of the sample will be lost altogether. In a looping audio context, trapezoidal windowing will go some way to preserving attacks and transient information at the seam and is generally considered more suitable for longer samples as it reduces the amplitude loss associated with gaussian (or Hann, Hamming, Blackman or any other cosine-sum windows for that matter).
Trapezoidal or any windowing which approaches rectangular will reduce the “click” introduced when going from one chunk of audio to another where zero-crossings aren’t present but this click is merely reduced to a consistent pop. The pop which will occur at the transition from the beginning to the end of the loop with this method also occurs regardless of the audio content, so when applied over a pure tone for instance the quick ramping of amplitude to 0 and back will always be audible regardless of zero-crossings.
That was the first hurdle. Capturing the initial audio with a clean seam.

The primary problem comes when the start position is moved mid playback. The playheads on the Lubadh are decoupled from the loop window which allows for very interesting dynamic playback of the source audio. A Paradox occurs when the start position moves with velocity at a speed faster than the playhead’s playback speed. On tape this is of course an impossible task. A decision had to be made as to how the mechanics of this approach behave in practice. Digital audio works in blocks at rates fast enough that processes can appear immediate. Especially at 96Khz!
An alternative to applying windowing functions to the audio signal at transition points is to calculate a cross-fade buffer where in a set number of samples from the beginning and end of the loop are summed with some form of interpolating crossfade function. This can be potentially seamless with the appropriate crossfade length if the audio is congruous between the beginning and end of the loop. But it’s always dependant on the audio you’re crossfading, to preserve transients the shorter the better for crossfades (when looping non drone-y sounds), if you have slower smoother sounds then longer crossfades may appear more natural. This by nature is always going to be a compromise and there’s not a one-size-fits-all solution which will suit the needs of every use case.
This is of course all well and good for a fixed length audio loop. Where the spanner really hits the works is with the introduction of dynamically changeable loop start and end points, speed and direction, all whilst simultaneously recording new material into the same buffer… During earlier development that was a hurdle we hit face first.
Choices had to be made between restricting the flexibility and responsiveness of the instrument to always ensure smooth playback or allowing people dynamic control over all of these features which can result in the playhead moving from one position to another which may well not be at a zero-crossing and may not be within a calculated crossfade.
At a static start position/length there is a linear crossfade of ~3ms used. Clean loop points is always going to be content specific but there is a lot of of precision in the controls. CV was added to all the parameters because we are in Eurorack! There will be sweet spots in every context.

The focus when designing the Lubadh was to try and create an instrument which would allow you to quickly grab chunks of audio and manipulate and transform them in a hands-on and intuitive manner. Curatorial decisions have been made in response to feedback from beta testers and time spent playing with it myself. Working mostly with complex dynamic audio the minimal windowing works to preserve transient information and the Lubadh allows for a new way of working within a modular system which is really flexible and really fun!
I’m still learning new ways it can be be used and performed with and look forward to hearing all the different ways people come up with to use it.

Right now in the workshop we’re building modules flat-out to meet demand, but continual work on the Lubadh will be ongoing. As I type, a new method of dynamically adaptive crossfading is being worked on behind me! The goal is a method that will not only remove any of the clicks which can occur when scrubbing through the audio but may also allow some degree of control over the transitions so you can select the crossfade to suit the characteristics of the audio you happen to be working with.
There should be a first firmware update coming very soon. I’ve no doubt there will be many more exciting changes and improvements to come over time, we’ve been bouncing ideas around the workshop and with our beta testers. But with the module out in the wild now there are going to be suggestions and ways of working that I haven’t even considered!
We follow threads and discussions and are very much listening ;)

Keep an eye out for announcements on the social medias etc.
Thanks again for all the positivity

Cheers!
Jason

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by fjoesz » Wed Jan 29, 2020 2:43 pm

thanks for the heads up!
I'm really REALLY looking forward to both lubadh and arbhar to land in my system

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by pyjamarama » Wed Jan 29, 2020 4:20 pm



so can you interact with the "tape" playback. i.e. slowing, bending by pressing on the tape graphic/panel itself as this video suggests? it looks like you can and that seems like such a great touch. if so to what extent?

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by obakegaku » Wed Jan 29, 2020 6:10 pm

robbbiecloset wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:33 am
How are folks finding the noise floor on this?

I got mine earlier this week and just started to play with it last night. Tons of immediate fun, but it's loud with nothing plugged in to it / nothing coming out of it.

I have a small case powered by a row power 40 with lots of digital modules, but I am well under the limit (close to about 2/3 at the moment), so I was hoping I'd be ok.

I'm in the middle of moving house so I have no second case to try it in, but will ASAP. Thought I'd see if anyone else has had similar experiences though.
Take the usb out, this helps a lot. Unit heats up a fair bit more when it's plugged in too.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by robbbiecloset » Wed Jan 29, 2020 10:36 pm

obakegaku wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 6:10 pm
robbbiecloset wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:33 am
How are folks finding the noise floor on this?

I got mine earlier this week and just started to play with it last night. Tons of immediate fun, but it's loud with nothing plugged in to it / nothing coming out of it.

I have a small case powered by a row power 40 with lots of digital modules, but I am well under the limit (close to about 2/3 at the moment), so I was hoping I'd be ok.

I'm in the middle of moving house so I have no second case to try it in, but will ASAP. Thought I'd see if anyone else has had similar experiences though.
Take the usb out, this helps a lot. Unit heats up a fair bit more when it's plugged in too.
Thanks for this! Will give it a go.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Ray Finkle » Thu Jan 30, 2020 4:27 am

Innerself2007 wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:06 am
Ray Finkle wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 8:55 am
Innerself2007 wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 8:40 am
How do you record from say reel A to reel B and back?
https://www.instruomodular.com/wp-conte ... -web-2.pdf

Page 2 of the guide, the little diagram in the bottom left (under normalised signal path) shows how to do this. I've had it doing this using this method essentially putting Out1->In2, Out2->In1
Thanks for the quick reply, I did see the diagram but its not making much sense to me, Do I need to physically patch output one into input 2? Do I need to do something with the input trimmers? I tried things last night but was unable to get reel one sound to reel 2 and record. I didn't try physically patching though.
yeah, I physically patched it :hmm: . (with some mults to (a)to bring new stuff onto tape 1, and (b) to send the out of 2 to my mixer) Input trimmers set to middle/decent volume.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Innerself2007 » Thu Jan 30, 2020 8:11 am

Ray Finkle wrote:
Thu Jan 30, 2020 4:27 am
Innerself2007 wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:06 am
Ray Finkle wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 8:55 am
Innerself2007 wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 8:40 am
How do you record from say reel A to reel B and back?
https://www.instruomodular.com/wp-conte ... -web-2.pdf

Page 2 of the guide, the little diagram in the bottom left (under normalised signal path) shows how to do this. I've had it doing this using this method essentially putting Out1->In2, Out2->In1
Thanks for the quick reply, I did see the diagram but its not making much sense to me, Do I need to physically patch output one into input 2? Do I need to do something with the input trimmers? I tried things last night but was unable to get reel one sound to reel 2 and record. I didn't try physically patching though.
yeah, I physically patched it :hmm: . (with some mults to (a)to bring new stuff onto tape 1, and (b) to send the out of 2 to my mixer) Input trimmers set to middle/decent volume.
Thanks for this, I actually had more time to mess around with Lubadh last night and found if I have nothing patched into the input, I just need to raise the input trimmer on the reel I want to record to, and this will feed one reel to the next, it makes much more sense now. I was getting some cool experimental sounds last night recording to the different reels and then bouncing back and forth between them.
Awesome module, I'm still trying to get my head around certain things, tried the delay mode and got strange results, I believe I need more instruction on that piece, it appears the input trimmer again is needed to use this effect but I'm not sure what I'm doing, I got unpredictable and strange results, maybe someone here can shed some light on that mode.
The clicking didn't bother me too much last night, I was using the module with synced clocks and was just triggering the different reels and changing the start position when sound wasn't present. I think what I was originally thinking with the start knob was it would act like tape and maybe be like a fast forward or rewind effect so if you turn the knob clockwise it would fast forward like a sped up tape to get to the next start point or reverse when turned counter clock wise without the clicks, I believe I will have to approach the start knob differently to avoid the clicks.
A couple of negative points about the module, when using the aux output I am getting bleed from reel 2 when in the reel one position and I am also experiencing noise from that output. If I use the individual outputs its dead quite and no bleed. Hmmmm do I need to switch cases? Was bummed about that since I like cross-fading between the two reels.
Also I find that the input trimmers are needed for many aspects of this module and are tough to get to especially if something is plugged into the input jack, would have loved a regular sized knob since its used quite often.
As you can see I'm still trying to figure this module out, we need another hour long instruction video like the arbarh, because I'm sure I'm missing obvious things that I'm doing wrong. Still trying to figure out how to use one sound source to feed both reels without unplugging from one input and plugging into the next, maybe a splitter or switch? I know the outputs are normalled to the input but I don't always want the opposite real to record with my sound source. This will take some thinking on my part, maybe I'm missing something obvious?
Don't want to steer anyone away from this module, its a totally awesome module and I can see its potential, I just feel like light needs to be shed on a few aspects of it and it will be perfect.

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by mdoudoroff » Thu Jan 30, 2020 9:09 am

One of Jason’s in-depth videos cannot arrive soon enough!

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Ray Finkle » Thu Jan 30, 2020 9:45 am

Innerself2007 wrote:
Thu Jan 30, 2020 8:11 am
Thanks for this, I actually had more time to mess around with Lubadh last night and found if I have nothing patched into the input, I just need to raise the input trimmer on the reel I want to record to, and this will feed one reel to the next, it makes much more sense now.
this makes much more sense, considering the quickstart guide called it the normal signal path or what have you.

I'm definitely at the start of the learning curve with this one :lol:

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Innerself2007 » Thu Jan 30, 2020 11:03 am

mdoudoroff wrote:
Thu Jan 30, 2020 9:09 am
One of Jason’s in-depth videos cannot arrive soon enough!
No doubt!

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by cackland » Thu Jan 30, 2020 12:18 pm

mdoudoroff wrote:
Thu Jan 30, 2020 9:09 am
One of Jason’s in-depth videos cannot arrive soon enough!
I agree. Or DivKid's...

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Re: Instruo Lúbadh stereo looper

Post by Johnnyfive » Thu Jan 30, 2020 2:57 pm

obakegaku wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 6:10 pm
Take the usb out, this helps a lot. Unit heats up a fair bit more when it's plugged in too.
what is the usb for? is this where reels are saved (so that they are preserved after power down)?

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