Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

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

Moderators: Kent, Joe., analogdigital, infradead, lisa, parasitk, plord

Post Reply
User avatar
razzkazz
Common Wiggler
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2015 1:10 pm
Location: Spain

Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

Post by razzkazz » Mon Jan 13, 2020 12:49 pm

There are various posts with people suggesting the Synthesis Technology E330 as a good module. I was looking to get some more user feedback on the module. I have watched all the videos on YT.

Currently I am making mostly ambient music, but also want something that's versatile. I am looking to replace my MN Telharmonic which I have tried to like but just ended up frustrated and feel I have to force sounds out of it.

I also have a DPO and Rings in a 6U 84HP setup. My main interest is live performance.

User avatar
bedhed3000
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 257
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:30 am
Location: California
Contact:

Re: Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

Post by bedhed3000 » Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:30 pm

I've had an E330 for a while and I'd say that it is definitely safe to say that it is versatile. If that is the main quality you are looking for in an oscillator, you can do a lot worse than the E330. That said, if I had more money to spend and more rack space, I would have gone for the E352. Both modules have the same "main" modes, and I think the synth engine is the same or similar on both. The larger module just has way more features.

I end up using the 2OPFM mode more the the others. It is really easy to dial in nice sounds (percussive and/or melodic) since the FM ratio is quantized. I was hoping to get more use out of the Cloud mode, but I found it hard to dial in chords. In the end I found ways to make glitchy percussive sounds with this mode, and of course you have the instant ability to make those detuned sawtooth lines and/or organ sounds. The wavetable mode is straight forward. One fun thing to do with the wavetable mode is to patch each output to the right/left of a stereo mixer and modulate the params at different rates, which gives you a cool stereo effect. You also probably saw in one of the youtube vids that you can get nasty, rubbery sounds from this mode by self-patching one channel into the modulation input of the other.

So yeah, I'd say grab one. They are cheap if you are buying used - your Telharmonic might pay for two.

User avatar
Fastus
Better safe than sober
Posts: 725
Joined: Fri Jun 08, 2012 9:31 pm
Location: Jersey City

Re: Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

Post by Fastus » Mon Jan 13, 2020 9:38 pm

Great module - cheap as chips, great sounds and like of all Paul's stuff, built for battle. IIRC John Rice bought 3 or 4 of 'em instead of going for the whole E370 gig. I made a demo some time ago - multi-tracked, 100% E330 sounds - this little box can do a LOT

"If fame is a penthouse in Manhattan, you're living in a yurt in Mongolia" - C. Berton Irwin

NEW EP: https://fastus.bandcamp.com/album/terra-incognito
www.soundcloud.com/fastus
www.soundcloud.com/problivion

User avatar
razzkazz
Common Wiggler
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2015 1:10 pm
Location: Spain

Re: Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

Post by razzkazz » Tue Jan 14, 2020 5:42 am

Thanks bedhed3000 and Fastus. Sometimes when you see a demo of a model on YT and hear the sounds in isolation it can sound impressive but in use it's a different matter. Hearing what you say about the Clouds mode relates to this. I wouldn't want to buy this and just end up using the FM mode the whole time. If either of you can comment, how versatile is the wavetable mode compared to a dedicated wavetable module?

Many people talk about how cheap this module is. That's nice, but I also don't want to compromise, though still get something for around €350 or less.

Fastus, that's a great demo! Do you find yourself using certain modes more than others. My main use will be for live performance.

User avatar
razzkazz
Common Wiggler
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2015 1:10 pm
Location: Spain

Re: Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

Post by razzkazz » Tue Jan 14, 2020 5:57 am

And speaking of modules that do a lot, any thoughts on the 330 versus Plaits, which has similar modes?

User avatar
Fastus
Better safe than sober
Posts: 725
Joined: Fri Jun 08, 2012 9:31 pm
Location: Jersey City

Re: Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

Post by Fastus » Tue Jan 14, 2020 9:53 am

Thanks Razzkazz! There's no doubt that the E352 presents a deeper feature set than the E330, which is essentially a "sampler" of three sound engines found in its more expensive siblings. At that price point the E330 offers two advantages - less anxiety in a live performance re:beer spills and potential theft, and it's a budget friendly polyphonic solution if that's your interest. But you''ll notice it doesn't have a microSD slot which allows easy O.S upgrades (which allows the designers to add new features) & even more importantly, you can upload custom made wavetables using the ingenious WaveEdit program - there's already a huge library of available sounds.

I have a Plaits as well - there's a lot of power under that hood because of all the modes, but it's less immediate than the ST stuff - I always have to keep the quick manual around to track which mode I'm in and what the re-assignable knobs do in that context. Maybe if you fall in love with it, it'll all be second nature to you, but it might otherwise be a little nerve-wracking for live performance. Much like the Telharmonic, I found I was productive with it when I focused on learning it and had all the details immediately in mind, but if can be frustrating later if infrequent use always requires a visit to the manual to sort things, just as you're trying to develop a larger idea.

Here's a Plait's demo which shows off Plait's range of sounds:
"If fame is a penthouse in Manhattan, you're living in a yurt in Mongolia" - C. Berton Irwin

NEW EP: https://fastus.bandcamp.com/album/terra-incognito
www.soundcloud.com/fastus
www.soundcloud.com/problivion

User avatar
razzkazz
Common Wiggler
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2015 1:10 pm
Location: Spain

Re: Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

Post by razzkazz » Tue Jan 14, 2020 1:40 pm

Another great demo :) Having an SD slot would be nice, but my thinking is that most modules can't be updated so that's not a deal breaker. I get what you mean about needing the quick manual for Plaits, that's the first thing I thought when I saw it in action. Yes, I am looking for something that is immediate so the 330 could be better for that, but I am also practical so a small powerhouse could be just that.

I checked out your SoundCloud as you mentioned the Telharmonic I figured you might have a demo, nice job ;) For me it has certain sweet spots and sounds good in isolation, but together with other sounds/oscillators I have struggled to get it to fit since I got it a year ago. I tried just using it by itself for a month, to really get deep into but I didn't have any eureka moments and feel I am fighting to get something I like from it. I have come to the conclusion it's not the module for me, I have also come to not like its tone/character. I don't use sequencers, which I also think are necessary to unlock it's full potential.

I am still not completely sold on the 330, but it's a strong contender. Having used the TH, the clouds mode makes me nervous as dialing in chords is not of interest to me (now I am sure). Slight detuning is nice, but between that and where the chords start, I am not so sure about that. I have a DPO (might change down the line), which takes care of FM duties, though it is much wilder and difficult to dial in than what the 330 seems to offer. I never had a wavetable oscillator, but am also glad that the tables on the 330 dont seem to get too crazy, that's not really what I am after.

As I don't use sequencers, I am looking for something that works well for tonal sculpting and just sounds great by itself, or with some filtering and modulation.

galaxie
Common Wiggler
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Jul 28, 2018 12:36 pm

Re: Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

Post by galaxie » Tue Jan 14, 2020 3:12 pm

To me, Telharmonic sounds a bit like electronic chip making sounds. The sound of E330 seems more meaty.

User avatar
bedhed3000
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 257
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:30 am
Location: California
Contact:

Re: Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

Post by bedhed3000 » Tue Jan 14, 2020 3:57 pm

razzkazz wrote:
Tue Jan 14, 2020 5:42 am
If either of you can comment, how versatile is the wavetable mode compared to a dedicated wavetable module?
Not very. Like I said it's straight-forward, however the fact that you get two identical channels opens up some fun patching possibilities. The wavetables that are installed in the module do sound fantastic either way, plus the interpolation is nice and smooth. One thing to keep in mind is that the modulation inputs are offset by the knob position, not attenuated, so you'll want to dedicate a channel or two of attenuation/attenuversion to avoid sweeping the whole range.

User avatar
razzkazz
Common Wiggler
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2015 1:10 pm
Location: Spain

Re: Synthesis Technology E330 users thoughts?

Post by razzkazz » Wed Jan 15, 2020 10:16 am

OK thanks. Regarding the attenuation, I think I saw that mentioned in a video. Thanks for the reminder :) I have a Maths and Blinds, so I should be ok. I like that two separate outs feature, useful in many different ways.

Sound quality is of prime importance, so nice to hear that galaxie

Post Reply

Return to “Eurorack Modules”