How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

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aaronshaver
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How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by aaronshaver » Tue Mar 03, 2020 9:43 am

Meaning, if pressed, how many distinct, identifiable sounds could you generate at once in your rack?

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Boodaleechees
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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by Boodaleechees » Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:15 am

If by voices you mean oscillator/trigger combinations, three - 2x Plaits and BIA. Otherwise, seven (Mangrove, STO, Dixie, Loquelic Iteritas). However, with Ears bringing other things into the system, I guess I could say eight.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by aaronshaver » Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:33 am

Boodaleechees wrote:
Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:15 am
If by voices you mean oscillator/trigger combinations, three - 2x Plaits and BIA. Otherwise, seven (Mangrove, STO, Dixie, Loquelic Iteritas). However, with Ears bringing other things into the system, I guess I could say eight.
Those latter ones count.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by mdoudoroff » Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:38 am

Dozens—too many to calculate. My limitation would be summing: I’d run out of summing opportunities before I ran out of sound sources. The beauty of modular is that you can turn any suitable voltage fluctuation into a voice. Even a simple trigger signal is a voice, depending on what you do with it (e.g., run it into a reverb). Filters can be pinged or self-oscillate. Various switches and devices can be run at audio rates...

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by MossGarden » Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:45 am

I second the fact it's too much to calculate, many of my modules have the ability to be patch in a certain way that they become voices themselves, Falistri for example.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by blw » Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:49 am

In my 6U, only 1 traditional voice, but if I was really streeeeeetching: MI Ears, Spring Reverb (physical manipulation, feedback, and fun power supply hum), Magneto (self-oscillation), Modcan Delay (self-oscillation), Cyclic Skew and 2 x Lightstrips for rough audio rate LFO, up to 16 simultaneous samples from bitbox, so 24. EDIT: if a symphony of individual DC clicks counted, I guess I'd be up to 40 :hyper: :hihi:
Last edited by blw on Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:57 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by Boodaleechees » Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:51 am

Well, yeah, Mimeophon, filters.... certainly more than eight! I forgot about Morphagene and Nebulae too, sooo.... yeah. A bunch.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by Kattefjaes » Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:56 am

Errr.. some. Depends if I include drum voices, filters that can self-oscillate nicely, things like Disting MK.4 that has a bunch of oscillator and sample player modes etc.., as well as what's actually in the rack this week. Also, when you have things which can be used to cobble together envelopes, VCA behaviour, it's all a bit of a movable feast.

Moreover, two voices patched one way can easily collapse down to one with a couple of oscillators feeding it etc..

Good question, I hadn't realised how weird the answer is until I tried to formulate one. I could probably would out an answer, but I guarantee that after a couple of weeks of tinkering, I'd have a higher number once I'd worked out some cheats.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by electricanada » Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:06 am

Do noise outputs count? Does each out on an osc or filter count separately? Do utility modules that can go into audio range count?
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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by Yes Powder » Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:15 am

You mean like the theoretical maximum simultaneous number of sounds I could generate in my system by any means, including audio-rate triggering of sequencers, feedback loops around high-gain VCAS and other such modular voodoo?

A lot and a half.


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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by CaneMan » Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:31 am

If I stick with modules/patches I've used as voices, about 10. Though using them all at once would be a challenge.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by MarcelP » Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:33 am

Way more than I need, less than I desire.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by plord » Tue Mar 03, 2020 12:34 pm

If I *insist* that every voice have at least one envelope, a VCA, and a sequencing source, and all voices have a filter of some kind, no West-ish complex osc no-filter voices, then...15. I would need to take over every input on the patch bay to sum all those voices to the main studio mixer, but it's possible.

I don't have a problem and I can stop whenever I want.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by GuyaGuy » Tue Mar 03, 2020 12:38 pm

Three core voices: 2 VCOs and 1 BIA in 6U
Plus whatever self oscillation tricks I could come up with but don't actually use.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by starthief » Tue Mar 03, 2020 12:41 pm

aaronshaver wrote:
Tue Mar 03, 2020 9:43 am
Meaning, if pressed, how many distinct, identifiable sounds could you generate at once in your rack?
There are so many ways to bend this, so many different permutations that I'm not going to try to figure it out.

Just looking at the Hertz Donut mk2, the obvious answer is one or two. But there are five outputs, and with clever sequencing and enough VCAs/LPGs, one could get five perceptually separate "voices" out of it. Or even mult the outputs through other processors to create even more voices...

So maybe VCAs are the limiting factor? Well, I only have one dual VCA and one dual LPG in my whole 12Ux114HP rack. But I've got modules with internal VCAs, I've got filters, I've got Maths... and I've got Bitwig Studio, which honestly acts as my "VCAs" quite often since I tend to play drone-ish voices with manual level control via my 16n Faderbank.

On a more practical level, I tend to run with 1-5 voices per recording, counting the modular, Lyra-8, Reface CS and rarer software voices. A "voice" is a bit arbitrarily defined even there.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by cg_funk » Tue Mar 03, 2020 1:01 pm

...... not enough?

I mean, I can patch quite a few different sounds up simultaneously, but now that I've downsized to a 7U case from my 14U, I feel like I come up to the limits of the system pretty often. I typically have about 4-6 different types of sounds going on, and I can surely do a bit more, but I have a very very limited system right now:

Let's see, the BIA is an all-in-one voice. And I also have Fracture, which is all-in-one. So there's 2 easy ones.
Then I have a Sinc Iter, and Lifeforms Primary oscillator. Those can be another 2-4 voices depending on if I want to take multiple outs from the lifeforms.
The Filter8 can be a voice in self-oscillation.
Then I have some noise sources and some LFO's that can be pushed to the audio range.. That could be another 3-4 voices.
Just Friends could be another 6 voices.. Batumi can technically be a voice..
Even on my 'limited' system, I can actually patch quite a few things. I have a WMD-PM mixer that has 8 inputs, and it's not hard to use them all if I want.

I guess in practice the main limitation for using it all simultaneously is the number of envelopes and VCAs I have: which is 2-channels of Maths, 1 channel from Contour1, and 2 from my Doepfer A142-2 dual env-controlled VCAs. (so 5 envelopes).
For VCAs I have a ModDemix (2 channels), XAOC Talllin (2 channels), The Doepfer A142-2 (2 Channels), and the WMD-PM (8 channels).
I guess I have more VCAs than envelopes, so envelopes is the practical limit today.

This was fun! I guess that anyone with a significant-sized system could do a LOT more. ha ha.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by lisa » Tue Mar 03, 2020 1:05 pm

15-20, if I’m being a tad creative. Way more than I’d ever use at once anyway.
My first modular track where I used drum modules! There's also a ton of FM cross modulation from the Instruō Cš-L in there and the Metasonix R56 is a big part of the sound. :star:



We also just did a live performance. Just eurorack, a mixer and two nitwits. :hyper: http://tiny.cc/8ndspz

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by insoul8 » Tue Mar 03, 2020 1:37 pm

mdoudoroff wrote:
Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:38 am
Dozens—too many to calculate. My limitation would be summing: I’d run out of summing opportunities before I ran out of sound sources. The beauty of modular is that you can turn any suitable voltage fluctuation into a voice. Even a simple trigger signal is a voice, depending on what you do with it (e.g., run it into a reverb). Filters can be pinged or self-oscillate. Various switches and devices can be run at audio rates...
This is the real answer. I looked at my modular grid to try and count but my head exploded first.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by target_destroyed » Tue Mar 03, 2020 2:49 pm

If we're talking traditional east-coast voices (osc>filter>vca) with their own sequencer channels, then four in my 12u case and 2 in my 9u, excluding drum voices.

If we're talking "things that can be used as a sound source" then I dunno. A lot more than I'd ever use in a single patch at any rate.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by Ivo Ivanov » Tue Mar 03, 2020 3:38 pm

MarcelP wrote:
Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:33 am
Way more than I need, less than I desire.
:yay: Exactly!

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fac
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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by fac » Tue Mar 03, 2020 3:43 pm

I planned for my humble 9U system to be a 2-voice machine (with at least 1 or 2 VCOs, 1 env, 1 VCF, 1 VCA, and sequencing) but I can usually squeeze a third voice out of it.

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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by Pelsea » Tue Mar 03, 2020 5:13 pm

It's really about limiting factors. I wound up spending a fair amount of time analyzing my setup in terms of voices and realized I needed a better definition, so I've come up with three types of voice: sustaining, pitched percussion, and drums. One obvious limit is set by the signal sources available. Disregarding tricks like driving filters into resonance:
I have 10 VCOs capable of sustained tones, plus enough VCAs, LPGs and function generators to complete 10 sustaining voices and enough mixer inputs for 17.
I have 2 modules that are best at pitched percussion.
I have 4 simple drum modules.

So, 16?

Looking at it another way, I counted the voices by my ability to control them. I have 20 CV channels from my laptop-- sustained and pitched percussion require two (one as trigger), drums get by on one each, so the laptop controls 12 parts. I have a QuNexus and WX5 to control sustained voices and two sample and holds with clocks to bring that total up to 16 also.
Definitely 16.
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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by indigoid » Wed Mar 04, 2020 3:09 pm

Such a strange question.
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Re: How many "voices" do you have in your modular?

Post by sir stony » Wed Mar 04, 2020 3:43 pm

Weird question indeed. I mean, I could probably squeeze 20 and a few voices out of my modular, but then, most of these wouldn't be interesting at all. Of course, for a melodic base structure, some of these "simple" voices really are used.
But the modular realm gets interesting when we stray off that path and create voices that we can't get out of the countless pre-built synth engines. Like when I made a monster bass voice that used I think eight modules, not counting the sequencer. That shook the dust out of my cans, but it ended up so "phat" there was no way to use it sensibly in any melody arrangement that I could have thought of. It was still cool. :goo: :hihi:
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