Modules/techniques for live processing an acoustic guitar (stereo)

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Modules/techniques for live processing an acoustic guitar (stereo)

Post by slentthndr » Mon Feb 22, 2021 4:02 pm

I've had the most success with clouds (monsoon actually) but I'm super bored with what I've been doing. If anyone has specific tips on clouds settings that might be useful for this, those are most welcome!

But really I was hoping folks might be able to point me towards some completely different workflows/modules.

Ideally I'd like to preserve the stereo image I'm getting from my mics. Ideally I'd like to preserve the full frequency range as well, rather than going lofi or filtering heavily. I mean... idk. I don't want to rule anything out. But thus far, the filtering/distorting approach hasn't worked well because it just shrinks the character of the sound. On the other hand, leaving the sound dry just sounds... dry, and not compatible with the other sounds coming from my rack. And if all I do is add delay and reverb, well then what even is the point of running it through the eurorack?

So there's where my head's at. I've had some success with this setup (guitar thru modular) but I'm at a crossroads and need some advice and/or inspiration. Thanks!!

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Re: Modules/techniques for live processing an acoustic guitar (stereo)

Post by japes » Mon Feb 22, 2021 7:14 pm

what are you doing now? that'll make it easier to suggest things that are not that (:

in terms of eurorack effects that have stereo input, intellijel rainmaker and morphagene come to mind.

if your question is - why go eurorack - the answer really is a) depth of customizability in terms of the effects you get, and b) the ability to have control over time of the parameters of effects in ways that don't really work on pedalboards.

you might want to try playing with triggered modulation etc based on guitar input. there's the adventure merge, which has a pedal send/return, but ears will do a lot of what merge does. the knobs video for the merge may be a source of some inspiration.

you can also try using things that convert pedals to CV, like the doepfer A-177-2. that will also help the performance aspect of it - pedals, obv, are easy to perform on while your hands are busy with a guitar.

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Re: Modules/techniques for live processing an acoustic guitar (stereo)

Post by fruitsnake » Mon Feb 22, 2021 9:07 pm

Here's something I did for a while that is pretty well aligned to what you're talking about - maybe. This was a while ago so I don't fully remember what I did or how it was accomplished.

I ran my acoustic guitar into a preamp (mono, but I split it) and then into two samplers. I used Nebulae2 and W/, but any two would work. I also ran a copy of the clean guitar to the envelope follower input on Cold Mac and some sort of comparator. Also I think one of the samplers had a band pass filter in front of it, but anyway, sampler A's record function is toggled by the comparator and sampler B's record function is toggled by means of a scenario involving Cold Mac's analog logic comparing a half rectified version of my guitar's audio to a stepped random voltage. This creates two audio streams - one consisting of small blips and one than contains samples of more complete phrases. Sampler B (the little blips) then goes into Rings and sampler A goes into whatever I was feeling at the moment: Clouds, Dark Matter, filter controlled by Mr. Grassi, Milky Way...

I did several tracks with variations of that patch; it was really fun. I actually released them as an EP, so you can hear what it sounds like here:

The second and third tracks are where I'm using the acoustic guitar; in the first one I'm playing a Hyve synth (I think). And basically all the sounds you hear are coming from the sampler arrangement described above. I wasn't using any oscillators in the traditional sense. Also there was a lot more going on with Cold Mac than I can recall, but I know it was extracting and distributing CVs from various input that were then used to control may aspects of sample playback and other effect parameters.

But yeah, that's certainly a different workflow than Clouds, although it can involve Clouds too which is cool. And it's also certainly something you could only do in modular, so I think that checks all boxes?

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