STG Digital Attenuator

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Bowman
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STG Digital Attenuator

Post by Bowman » Wed Mar 25, 2015 9:25 pm

Can anyone give me some practical applications of the STG Digital Attenuator? I've seen Erik's video, and while I enjoy the music, I can't really tell what the module is doing.
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Post by lvoemachine » Wed Mar 25, 2015 9:34 pm

It's a vca essentially. The modes control when the digital pot that controls the analog signal looks for cv to change. Zero crossing in a practical sense means you can use a smooth bass sound and get zero click. The way that the side chain input works is different in each mode.

When you use audio rate signals it's really interesting sounding as well. It's very clean sonically and is a great performance tool with the mode switch as you can change the sound of the filter getting eg control with a button.

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duluthdack
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Post by duluthdack » Thu Mar 26, 2015 2:07 am

So would an attenuator be essential for any modular setup??? ^^

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Thu Mar 26, 2015 2:19 am

duluthdack wrote:So would an attenuator be essential for any modular setup??? ^^
Yes! :tu:

While it would be rare but possible to not have any attenuators or even VCAs at all in a synth :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: you'd be missing out on a wealth of important control options.

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duluthdack
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Post by duluthdack » Thu Mar 26, 2015 2:48 am

Looks like I should pick up an STG attenuator.... or two!!

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Re: STG Digital Attenuator

Post by alternating.bit » Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:34 am

Bowman wrote:Can anyone give me some practical applications of the STG Digital Attenuator? I've seen Erik's video, and while I enjoy the music, I can't really tell what the module is doing.
You're not alone. I found that video completely cryptic in regards to exactly what Digital Attenuators are, or can do. Yes, the video is interesting, sounds very cool and is entertaining, but yea, I felt the same way about that.

Ironically, I just ordered my very first attenuator module (STG Active Attenuators) two days ago. Like many bread and butter modules its one of those you must have modules based on the veterans here. I followed that type of hype for the Dotcom Signal Processor (which I ended up selling not understanding its usefulness, then ended up buying back later, having a better understanding), and the Oakley VRG which I use quite regularly.

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Post by dan_e10 » Thu Mar 26, 2015 7:42 am

lvoemachine wrote:Zero crossing in a practical sense means you can use a smooth bass sound and get zero click. The way that the side chain input works is different in each mode.
What does this mean exactly? Is it that you can have a 0 attack time and/or release and still not get a click because it will wait until the input crosses 0 before jumping the gain up or down?
Dan

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Post by ear ear » Thu Mar 26, 2015 7:55 am

dan_e10 wrote:
lvoemachine wrote:Zero crossing in a practical sense means you can use a smooth bass sound and get zero click. The way that the side chain input works is different in each mode.
What does this mean exactly? Is it that you can have a 0 attack time and/or release and still not get a click because it will wait until the input crosses 0 before jumping the gain up or down?
Dan
Yes.
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Post by dan_e10 » Thu Mar 26, 2015 8:04 am

Is there a way to set attentuation with these, or is it done completely by the signal coming in on the CV input? I'm trying to envision how to use these as 3 VCA's, but it seems like you need another VCA just to set the gain and control strength of these unless I'm missing something?
Dan

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ear ear
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Post by ear ear » Thu Mar 26, 2015 8:21 am

dan_e10 wrote:Is there a way to set attentuation with these, or is it done completely by the signal coming in on the CV input? I'm trying to envision how to use these as 3 VCA's, but it seems like you need another VCA just to set the gain and control strength of these unless I'm missing something?
Dan
Have a look at the thread for the Euro version here.
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Post by dan_e10 » Thu Mar 26, 2015 8:40 am

ear ear wrote:
dan_e10 wrote:Is there a way to set attentuation with these, or is it done completely by the signal coming in on the CV input? I'm trying to envision how to use these as 3 VCA's, but it seems like you need another VCA just to set the gain and control strength of these unless I'm missing something?
Dan
Have a look at the thread for the Euro version here.
Thanks for the link. WMDevices post clears up my questions.
Dan

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Post by Bowman » Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:50 pm

dan_e10 wrote:WMDevices post clears up my questions.
Dan
Sorry should have mentioned that the Digital Attenuator was a joint product of WMD and STG. I should have looked at the WMD site myself. I'm cutting down my system and the STG DA is up for consideration.
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Post by analogjeff » Thu Mar 26, 2015 8:37 pm

not sure about this one..

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Post by EMwhite » Thu Mar 26, 2015 9:38 pm

3 VCAs packed into a small space is pretty handy if you are downsizing to a smaller modular or one of those guys that can't have enough*

I bought one of these a while ago for use for utility purposes and it does the trick; no problems with the zero crossing at high pitch because it tops out well above my hearing range.

The ZCD is surely the killer app and I've also used it for general audio (aka non modular) such as on my Moog Minitaur.

One thing to be aware of is that this module is power hungry and uses ~100mA of +5V. I've been back and forth with William to confirm this; it's got 3 micro controllers onboard which do little but run as fast as they can to sample the incoming audio cycles.

The reversible attenuators module is a different animal all together since it is not voltage controlled but gives bipolar response similar to the Moon 563.

You might miss features that other VCAs have but this has other features; been meaning to try the S+H function, just haven't gotten to it.
Last edited by EMwhite on Fri Mar 27, 2015 7:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by nidas » Fri Mar 27, 2015 3:05 am

I get alot of clicks so I will definately check this out.. and 3 VCA`s in one unit is really good.. Would it be any problem using these with Mos-lab 1.5v VCO´s?

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Post by lvoemachine » Fri Mar 27, 2015 2:13 pm

this will work with your moslab just fine. The s&h possibilities with this module are fantastic. I asked suit why it was called an attenuator, and he wanted it to be clear that a digital attenuator is controlling the analog signal path so calling it a digital VCA would be misleading.

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Post by suitandtieguy » Sun Mar 29, 2015 1:13 am

yes the signal path is all-analogue. not only that, it's the _shortest_ signal path of any VCA out there ... this thing is extremely clean.

electrically speaking, it's literally a digitally-controlled passive attenuator with buffered inputs and outputs.

what you need to watch out for is when using the zero crossing detector, you have to be using very simple signals. high filter resonances and strong upper harmonics can make the detector freak out if the HF content is crossing zero _inside_ the fundamental, especially if it's too fast for the micro to keep up (it does have its limits.)

bright sounds don't really need the ZCD, it's more for perfect sine leads and basses. best dub bass in the biz, this does.
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Post by duluthdack » Wed Apr 01, 2015 1:55 am

Bowman

You are selling your STG attenuator??? How much?

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Post by Bowman » Fri Apr 03, 2015 1:03 pm

duluthdack wrote:Bowman

You are selling your STG attenuator??? How much?
No, sorry. If that changes, I'll let you know.
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Re: STG Digital Attenuator

Post by Dave Peck » Fri Apr 03, 2015 1:18 pm

(delete - misread the post)

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Post by Sir Ruff » Sat Mar 09, 2019 2:54 pm

Has anyone confirmed what the exact +/- power draw is for these? (STG himself doesn't know:)

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:14 pm

Sir Ruff wrote:Has anyone confirmed what the exact +/- power draw is for these? (STG himself doesn't know:)
I don't have one so I can't check but I might make a wild assumption that being one of his newer modules with a look and likely an under the hood design that is very similar to his Envelope Generator, it probably has close to the same current draw, maybe +/- 20mA? :hmm:

The Envelope Generator requires:
40 mA +15V
12 mA -15V
0 mA 5V

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Post by Sir Ruff » Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:16 pm

JohnLRice wrote:
Sir Ruff wrote:Has anyone confirmed what the exact +/- power draw is for these? (STG himself doesn't know:)
I don't have one so I can't check but I might make a wild assumption that being one of his newer modules with a look and likely an under the hood design that is very similar to his Envelope Generator, it probably has close to the same current draw, maybe +/- 20mA? :hmm:

The Envelope Generator requires:
40 mA +15V
12 mA -15V
0 mA 5V
Cool, thanks. There is a mention of 100 mA above, but in reference to the 5V line, which doesn't really make sense? Maybe 5 was a typo?

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:30 pm

Sir Ruff wrote:
JohnLRice wrote:
Sir Ruff wrote:Has anyone confirmed what the exact +/- power draw is for these? (STG himself doesn't know:)
I don't have one so I can't check but I might make a wild assumption that being one of his newer modules with a look and likely an under the hood design that is very similar to his Envelope Generator, it probably has close to the same current draw, maybe +/- 20mA? :hmm:

The Envelope Generator requires:
40 mA +15V
12 mA -15V
0 mA 5V
Cool, thanks. There is a mention of 100 mA above, but in reference to the 5V line, which doesn't really make sense? Maybe 5 was a typo?
Ahh, sorry, I'm probably totally wrong! :ripbanana:

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Post by dude » Sun Nov 24, 2019 6:44 pm

can anyone clear up if these use/require +5v to power proper?

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