Error Instruments?

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bemushroomed
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Error Instruments?

Post by bemushroomed » Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:05 am

Any experience with them? How's the build quality, how are they to deal with?

I check their site like once every month because there's usually stuff there that's bordering to really interesting (interesting until i check the video and then the sound quality sucks so bad due to mobile phone mic, and i decide to not order).
Amazing how someone can be a manufacturer / shop, year after year, and still have zero interest in investing (≈$50) to get line-in-audio... they must really hate selling things.

Anyways. I now ordered Raw Drum and Cat Soap V3. I noticed a little later that there's V2 for 10 euro cheaper (the only difference seems to be a super slight panel graphic difference). The shop is overall a real mess.

I might put up a demo (with proper line-in audio) when i get the modules.

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by adaris » Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:53 am

I've ordered a few things from them either directly or through Etsy, in fact, I'm waiting on a Raw Spring V2 now. I have a couple of Duo Solar Theremins that I'm happy with, but yeah I would agree their shop is a mess.

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by Moerder » Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:54 am

ordered a few things a couple years ago. somehow my post people claimed the address I gave was not a thing and it had to be returned to sender. long story short, it never made it there either and must've gotten lost in the ether, but throughout the whole time I've been emailing back and forth with Paul. he's been very helpful and ended up refunding the entire amount without question. so can't really speak to build quality etc but interaction was pleasant and timely.

also, I prefer whacky ideas over decent recording equipment any day so I don't mind the presentation of it all :P

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by foliephonics » Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:56 am

Paul Tas is a great guy with a vision and a mission. He also seems to be very independant and kind-of lives in his own world.
His website reflects that, with the "colorful interface", the "not-very-intuitive navigation", the approximations, and the many orthographic and grammatical mistakes (yes, english is not his mother tongue). I found it difficult at first, but I now know my way around and actually have grown to enjoy the place.

When I order something, I just get a message about their receiving my order, and then the parcel arrives often surprisingly very quickly, without any tracking info or whatever.
(Sometimes Paul is away abroad and he mentions this on the front page of the website, saying stuff will not be shipped until such-and-such date.)
Once, I ordered something and Paul emailed me to say it was not in stock and would I like to order something else instead with a rebate. I declined and got a prompt refund.

I like his demo videos because, despite their lo-fi character, they do illustrate what the module can do. Also, I find them fun and appreciate his presentations.
I do specially give him kudos because he does demos for non-errorinstruments modules which would otherwise have no demos and sink into oblivion.

I sometimes find his modules weird and intriguing, often interesting. Certainly never "middle of the road" !

Quality-wise, errorinstruments modules are obviously hand-made. I've had a couple of shody-looking assemblies, but the modules do work as intended, it's never been an issue.
(There is one module for which I think I could have done a better job with the soldering, and that says something since I'm awful at soldering... yet the module does work as intended. I suppose someone with DIY knowledge would actually have lots of fun.)

Just for reference, my recent order was for a Blind Noise, a Cloud Busting, an Indian Resonator and a Rythmic Drones, and I'm having lots of fun with them (I specially love the Rythmic Drones and I highly recommend it for people into drones).

In conclusion, I say that if you are interested by the modules and other stuff and can get over the "weirdness" of the website, go for it !
:yay:

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by Zymos » Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:16 am

I only have one, and the build is laughable. I mean, I literally laughed when I saw it. The wires of the power cable are individually soldered onto the PCB, and there’s a wood screw going right through the middle of the ribbon into the circuit board to act as a sort of strain relief.

But what the hell, it works. I think. It’s a pretty wacky module (2 Princesses), so a little hard to tell if it’s malfunctioning.

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bemushroomed
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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by bemushroomed » Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:39 am

Moerder wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:54 am

I prefer whacky ideas over decent recording equipment

Image

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Kent
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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by Kent » Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:43 am


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bemushroomed
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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by bemushroomed » Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:46 am

foliephonics wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:56 am
In conclusion, I say that if you are interested by the modules and other stuff and can get over the "weirdness" of the website, go for it !
:yay:
Thanks, good info. I kind of enjoy the graphics of the website, but it certainly could be better arranged. It was super easy to miss out on the cheaper version of the Cat Soup module..

I ended up regretting the purchase of Cat Soup, i switched it out for another module (so hopefully he'll read my email before he packages and sends it)..
The Atari Punk Console sound is.. well, its shit, but it's also the idea, its "punk" but i'm not sure how useful or fun it will be after the first hour heh.. i don't like having such modules in my rack, i have suspicion Cat Soup is such a module (and quite a few other modules on that site, tbh)
Zymos wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:16 am
I only have one, and the build is laughable. I mean, I literally laughed when I saw it.
haha, well yeah, as long as it works i guess :lol:

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Moerder
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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by Moerder » Sun Jan 12, 2020 10:13 am

bemushroomed wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:39 am
Moerder wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:54 am

I prefer whacky ideas over decent recording equipment

Why don't we have both?
as stated above, he's kind of in his own world and that may come with prioritising things that are important to him, and things he doesn't necessarily give a shit about. in this case, recording it with best possible audio to satisfy the sonic expectations of some people out there is clearly in the latter category, and since people have been buying error instruments for a good long while despite all that, it really seems like a you problem :razz:

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peabreu
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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by peabreu » Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:07 am

A "company" that answers no emails...nodocs, no support...uterly shxxx...
And 5 year old soldering skills.

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bemushroomed
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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by bemushroomed » Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:34 am

Moerder wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 10:13 am

as stated above, he's kind of in his own world and that may come with prioritising things that are important to him, and things he doesn't necessarily give a shit about. in this case, recording it with best possible audio to satisfy the sonic expectations of some people out there is clearly in the latter category, and since people have been buying error instruments for a good long while despite all that, it really seems like a you problem :razz:
I'm sure a few will buy since some of the stuff is rather unique, but quite a few will not when the sound is presented in such a way. Getting a line-in audio device to your phone isn't exactly an immense sacrifice, money or time wise.

Prioritizing sound quality when you work with sound should be a no-brainer, and other people should be important too if you make and sell stuff to other people, kind of obvious. If not then it can be easy to assume that maybe no shits are given in regards to build quality, support etc

Strangely enough he's not alone in the euroworld with this behavior, i used to do demos for a Swedish dude who makes and sells modules for a living. My videos got many positive comments and people suddenly got (more) interested since it was presented with good sound quality.

I mean what if a painter decided to show his paintings through a dirty window where you could only make out small parts of the painting. Maybe a few would still buy and be interested but he'd lose a lot of customers who would just think he's not very serious.. Its the same here.
peabreu wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:07 am
A "company" that answers no emails...nodocs, no support...uterly shxxx...
And 5 year old soldering skills.
Hmm that doesn't sound good. Will be interesting to see if he answers my email about wanting to change my order.

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foliephonics
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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by foliephonics » Sun Jan 12, 2020 2:01 pm

He's absent at the moment, as stated on the website...
Image
(The image will poof in a few days when he comes back and updates the website.)
bemushroomed wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:34 am
its "punk" but i'm not sure how useful or fun it will be after the first hour heh..
That's a valid statement for a number of things, and in particular with errorintruments... You gel with it or you don't...

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bemushroomed
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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by bemushroomed » Sun Jan 12, 2020 2:41 pm

totally missed that, i searched now and noticed that if you scroll down on the main page you do get to that picture.

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by Severed head » Sun Jan 12, 2020 4:57 pm

bemushroomed wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:34 am
Moerder wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 10:13 am

I mean what if a painter decided to show his paintings through a dirty window where you could only make out small parts of the painting. Maybe a few would still buy and be interested but he'd lose a lot of customers who would just think he's not very serious.. Its the same here.


contemporary art...
its bound to happen..
and bound to sell for a lot.
it'll be call an intentional decision and have some dip shit idea behind it about the world view and our society...
sorry, I couldnt help my self having working in what people buying art call the high end of the art world for so long..

back to ERROR, PAUL is a really nice guy, has always responded to me in a timely fashion and was very helpful even when I decided the module wasn't for me.
WTB: modules, MA35 filter.
:help:

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by nodog » Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:38 pm

Paul is one of the good guys.

When I asked him about a case for my first system he:
-invited me to his place.
-picked me up from (and later took me back to) the trainstation in his town.
-advised me on which modules to get for my wishes (not his own noise ones btw)
-sold me his last (probably his own?) ginko sampleplayer for a stupid low price
-modded the case I wanted with some extra bits (jack to minijack converters and the like) and instead of letting me pay extra for it I got a discount
-chucked in a bunch of long blue doepfer cables for free
-showed me very interesting stuff he was working on/had laying around in the shop
-and on top of that was an all around excellent guy to have a conversation with/be around

As you notice, I can't say enough good things about him. I haven't got any of his modules so won't comment on the quality of those but I'm 100% sure he won't be shitty to deal with.

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by Richard deHove » Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:01 pm

Another vote for Paul. I recently got Cloudbusting, which is a fantastic weird noise generator. Scaled up and enhanced it would be like a super-Lyra. But even as-is it makes an exceptional range of interesting sounds. Build quality is average but it's probably my best looking module. (I got the "blinking eye" edition).

He is a great person to deal with, responsive and fair. He even chucked in a little surprise gift with my last purchase. Sure the website could be a little better organized but it does the job. Likewise his video audio quality is not great but you can appreciate the aims. I think he's got a good dose of the mad professor in him, always creating odd things, some really visionary and some just wth. Certainly the modular world needs people like Paul to create all the weirdness on the edges. For me he is in a group that includes Soma Labs and Schlappi Engineering.

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bemushroomed
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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by bemushroomed » Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:15 pm

Cool, cool. Seems like most people are happy with him then.

Maybe i'm a bit harsh when it comes to his videos but its only because i think if you make modules you're an artist yourself and you're not giving your work justice, its just weird and counter-intuitive to me to not present it in the best way possible. But sure, it also goes in line with the punk attitude i'm getting, i guess that's the idea..

Totally agree we need more mad professors. The quirky stuff was why i was getting into euro in the first place.

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by Neither » Mon Jan 13, 2020 12:39 pm

I've been an avid consumer of error Insturment's modules since the beginning of my eurorack adventure. The build quality isn't perfect but the very reasonable prices reflect it. Sonic Lullaby is fun with Phonogene. Often I combinen Raw String with MI ears. Acid Delay is my favorite monophonic delay. Error Instrument's variation of Kastle is surprisingly useful with all of the LFO's. Solar theremin is one of my favorite module. Insanely useful hands-on-controller, very simple, fun and dirt cheap. Here's an example where It's been used to modulate O_c:


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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by NARC NOISE » Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:18 pm

I have had nothing but amazing transactions with Paul Tas. I have ordered $2000+ worth of modules/synths/noise boxes from him, and communication is always swift. Last time I ordered, my bank flagged the transaction as suspicious, and even after I contacted my bank and explained the situation, his payment portal still would not let me pay via my bank (bank problem, no problem on his end) We ended up doing the transaction via paypal, and he dropped the price a bit to offset Paypals fees and threw in some extras to boot. On top of that, once it did ship out (keeping in mind this was maybe a 2 day holdup) I received my shipment from him BEFORE a shipment I had ordered on the same day from a prominent North American shop.

As to the comments about the webpage and sound quality, here's my 2 cents: Outside of the obvious language barrier, I don't find the webpage difficult to navigate at all. Even with the language barrier, a scan of the description (at least from someone who speaks English, can't speak for those who don't speak English) gives a pretty good idea of what you are dealing with sound/function wise. As to the sound quality, I shall be blunt here....I think it's pretty obvious that this company doesn't cater to the more traditional synth enthusiast. Yes, there will be those in that camp that may find something interesting here and there, but this man caters to the niche within the niche. I know from browsing this forum that there are not a lot of people that use Eurorack for stictly noise/power elctronics, but as someone who is into Eurorack for strictly that, I love companies like this. How much high fidelity sound quality do you need on glitched out/ esoteric weirdness??

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by bemushroomed » Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:26 pm

Good to hear.

Glitch and noise are very rich sounds, tons of stuff going on in the sound. That's why i want to hear the pure sound instead of hearing something smudged out via his room ambience + usually he uses reverb or delay too on the sound.

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by EATyourGUITAR » Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:37 pm

I know that 5 years ago he was trying to buy licenses for module and pedal designs. he put an advertisement out. he was also hiring soldering people. a good way to start a company I guess. buy product designs. hire people to build the products. scale up. I think it takes a kind of fearless business manager to do something like that.

what I like about error instruments is that they are like a curated collection of noise specific designs. what I don't like is the depth, the panel designs on some of them are eh. basically they have this wasted space thing on the front and back. I have very high standards though so could be nothing to complain about. I also see things in some of them that I would have done differently. lots of little changes. but I am not the designer so it is what it is.
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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by Lux A Turner » Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:47 pm

FWIW and for those who prefer to order through a more standard platform: there's an Error shop on Etsy (errorinstruments).

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by NARC NOISE » Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:49 pm

EATyourGUITAR wrote:
Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:37 pm
I know that 5 years ago he was trying to buy licenses for module and pedal designs. he put an advertisement out. he was also hiring soldering people. a good way to start a company I guess. buy product designs. hire people to build the products. scale up. I think it takes a kind of fearless business manager to do something like that.

what I like about error instruments is that they are like a curated collection of noise specific designs. what I don't like is the depth, the panel designs on some of them are eh. basically they have this wasted space thing on the front and back. I have very high standards though so could be nothing to complain about. I also see things in some of them that I would have done differently. lots of little changes. but I am not the designer so it is what it is.

They definitely are not the shallowest depth modules (some of them, at least) Having built my own custom case with a good 6 1/2" of depth for modules, his modules gave me no issues. You make a good point though. I could see people getting frustrated if they order a module of his without knowing that there is a PCB running 3 or 4 inches deep into the case. However, a quick email with any questions concerning any technicalities would almost certainly be answered quickly.

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by bemushroomed » Fri Jan 31, 2020 6:34 am

Got my modules today, so quick shipping, less than a week if he got home on the 26th or whatever it was.

As i said earlier i wanted to change one of the modules, price was 11 euro more, i said i could pay the difference to paypal. Never got a reply, so i expected him to send me the original order but i actually got the module i wanted instead, at no extra cost it seems. So that's really nice!

I don't solder so i can't comment on the build quality like a pro would, but everything looks like i would expect, doesn't look sloppy or anything. Both modules are quite shallow, Raw Drum a little less so - it even has a mini-USB connector on the back for whatever reason, there's no manual, nothing on the site.

Raw Drum. This was exactly what i wanted and what i had hoped for, but perhaps a bit better even. Really love this module, tons of sweet spots for crazy glitch, fun to CV, audio modulation was cool too. 100% to my taste. If the demo video had been Lined-in then no doubt it would have ordered it without hesitation, now it felt too much like a crap shot, i was far from confident that this would be a keeper.
Edit: this module does not work completely (trigger input only works sometimes).. will have to send back.

Marilyn's Bang. Not exactly to my taste unfortunately. I have Wreckage from x1l3 which is a little bit like this, not exactly the same flavor of noise perhaps but too similar for me to want to keep it. The return policy seems to be if something is faulty you can obviously send it back, nothing about returning something that just wasn't what you expected. If the demo video had better sound quality then i could have made a better judgement for this module i think. Edit: i could return it though.
Last edited by bemushroomed on Fri Jan 31, 2020 4:08 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Error Instruments?

Post by bemushroomed » Fri Jan 31, 2020 6:55 am

Some images

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