Modular for bass studies

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moodle
Learning to Wiggle
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Joined: Mon Feb 17, 2020 8:28 pm

Modular for bass studies

Post by moodle » Mon Feb 17, 2020 8:56 pm

Hi there Wigglers,

I have frequented these waters for the last couple of years reading, following but never really had the guts to get into the fray, so to speak. 2020 alas has been the year I decided to go all in and start with the process of going hardware modular. Hence also this post :)

I have a long history of DSP and software modular, worked in Max back in the day, wrote custom core ensembles in Reaktor and eventually settled with the Kyma Pacarana system because it provided the most musicality for the experimentation. So I know my way around digital, but was always rather afraid of the hardware domain, until now. I am interested in exploring the bottom end, West Coast style. I will mostly control via a midi keyboard or perhaps a DAW midi out, and what I am currently in the dark in is how to use clocks in this domain. Im playing around in VCV rack but cant really wrap my head around clocks and what I need to synchronize EGs to custom BPM.

So this is what I came up with for starters. I would appreciate comments, scrutiny, advice, or anything else that may be missing, concerning my main interest, which is exploring bass :

https://www.modulargrid.net/e/racks/view/1133088

long live Muff Wiggler :hail:

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rew_
Wiggling with Experience
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Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2015 2:32 pm
Location: Chicago

Re: Modular for bass studies

Post by rew_ » Mon Feb 17, 2020 10:30 pm

choose one pitts oscillator or the other. if you choose the helix I'm not sure how necessary Warps would be in a system this size.

find room for a VCA (dual, at least), either traditional or a low pass gate.

there are smaller mixers than the A-138, for just a touch more money. you'll appreciate the space later.
whoosy boxes / zoomy panels

moodle
Learning to Wiggle
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Feb 17, 2020 8:28 pm

Re: Modular for bass studies

Post by moodle » Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:59 pm

Hello rew, and thanks for such a fast reply!

May I ask is there a specific reason why to have just one pitts osc? Regarding the Warps, do you mean that it comes into effect when more sound sources are at play? I was also looking at the phase distortion osc from WMD, would that be a solid complement to one pitts ?

Understood on the VCA and the mixer comments. I might as well go ahead and buy a three row case Im thinking....

:guinness:

Schrank
Common Wiggler
Posts: 120
Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2018 1:40 pm
Location: Switzerland

Re: Modular for bass studies

Post by Schrank » Tue Feb 18, 2020 6:45 am

moodle wrote:
Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:59 pm

May I ask is there a specific reason why to have just one pitts osc? I was also looking at the phase distortion osc from WMD, would that be a solid complement to one pitts ?
The double helix is already a dual oscillator, you will be able to get a huge range of sounds out of it. So better concentrate on that one and the complementing modulation and utility modules to form a voice.

advrsry
Common Wiggler
Posts: 72
Joined: Sat Apr 25, 2015 6:44 am
Location: Modular Grid

Re: Modular for bass studies

Post by advrsry » Tue Feb 18, 2020 10:24 am

moodle wrote:
Mon Feb 17, 2020 8:56 pm
Hi there Wigglers,

I have frequented these waters for the last couple of years reading, following but never really had the guts to get into the fray, so to speak. 2020 alas has been the year I decided to go all in and start with the process of going hardware modular. Hence also this post :)

I have a long history of DSP and software modular, worked in Max back in the day, wrote custom core ensembles in Reaktor and eventually settled with the Kyma Pacarana system because it provided the most musicality for the experimentation. So I know my way around digital, but was always rather afraid of the hardware domain, until now. I am interested in exploring the bottom end, West Coast style. I will mostly control via a midi keyboard or perhaps a DAW midi out, and what I am currently in the dark in is how to use clocks in this domain. Im playing around in VCV rack but cant really wrap my head around clocks and what I need to synchronize EGs to custom BPM.

So this is what I came up with for starters. I would appreciate comments, scrutiny, advice, or anything else that may be missing, concerning my main interest, which is exploring bass :

https://www.modulargrid.net/e/racks/view/1133088

long live Muff Wiggler :hail:
I'd get a Rossum Trident and an Evolution

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hinterlands303
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 838
Joined: Wed May 14, 2014 3:57 pm
Location: Detroit

Re: Modular for bass studies

Post by hinterlands303 » Tue Feb 18, 2020 11:33 am

I would pick a midi interface that had a clock out as well as gate/cv - you'll need this to sync Pam's with your computer/external sequencer. The Intellijel Midi module has a couple of clock outputs as well as a reset and run/stop. Actually there are several ways to approach this (expert sleepers, sending a clock pulse directly from your soundcard) but for the sake of simplicity a midi interface with a clock out is a good start. Also, if you aren't sure how you're going to use clocks I'd go with a less advanced clock module than Pam's to start so you can get the idea. Something like the Doepfer a-160-2 is a good way to dip your toes in the water.

You'll probably find that you need a second VCA/LPG beyond what's in the double helix but you can always add it later. You could get started with the Double Helix, Maths, and your midi/cv module and then take it from there.

Wjbratcher
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Location: Bull City

Re: Modular for bass studies

Post by Wjbratcher » Tue Feb 18, 2020 6:49 pm

My first two eurorack modules were the double helix and the make noise maths. They are still key workhorses in my 15u expansion for my mother 32 :waah: (I hate myself)

Knowing what I know now a couple years in, I might not have bought the ‘helix — this makes no sense (hear me out). The DH does not have some features that I would have maybe thought I could have wanted: linear FM for the oscs, linear response on the built-in VCAs, ring mod, sync, triangle waves, etc. I thought it was ‘west coast’ cause of the lpg and bongo sounds.

BUT: now I dig this oscillator for its intrinsic value — for its core sound. I have other lpg modules and oscs that I use for wannabe Buchla and wannabe Serge (different philosophies of ‘west coast’), but the DH is great for making big intense noise that sounds good filtered - who cares if that’s east or west?? Just the saws are great! Let alone the built-in noise and third oscillator (lfo) and the routing switches.

You can do tons of cool music with just your midi to cv, the DH, and the maths (another great module with great value!), but don’t be afraid of FILTERSSS with the DH, especially for bass.

moodle
Learning to Wiggle
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Feb 17, 2020 8:28 pm

Re: Modular for bass studies

Post by moodle » Tue Feb 18, 2020 7:47 pm

Wow, so many awesome hints, really really appreciated folks!!

I hear the comments about more mod capabilities via VCAs or LPGs. And I definitely plan on getting them, Im just trying to get the ball rolling with the first selection. I play alot in the VCV and Tides always seems to creep into my patches and its usually maybe one more VCA for random other stuff. But I get it, control is power.

What advrsry suggested has swayed me I must admit. Checking out the Trident introduced some doubt re: DH. I understand DH has more shaping capabilities but the TRI seems to have more modulation capacities, if I am not mistaken ?

Regarding sequencing and the clock comment. Most of my usecases need not be fully "synced" via a DAW per se. I actually used Kyma (and the only other hardware synth I have, A6 Andromeda) for years in a manner where I basically experiment live and record to wav, then search for cool interesting parts in the wav and then resample them further. So I dont really need fully timed sync with a DAW, as long as I can punch in my native tempo into the modular and sync up what rhythmically needs to get sync, Im good to go. In that manner, does the Doepfer a 160 2 suffice? I only looked at the Pamela module due to its simple setup of the BPMs.

Wjbratcher, thanks for the thoughtful response. You make a great point.I love filters, have nothing against them, to be honest. Wrote a bunch of them in digital, so forgive me if I misuse the term "West Coast". Could you comment on a potential DH vs Trident situation ? Oh yeah and what I do almost always end up making in VCV is an extra simple VCO for subs to layer on top of the gritty stuff of the main VCO. Thats the only reason I started with two VCOs in the initial setup.

:hail:

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