Eurorack, next to 5U?

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Dob
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Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by Dob » Mon Dec 30, 2019 10:47 am

This has been a tuff decision, but there's too much good stuff in the Eurorack format that's just never ported to 5U.
I will need to get some Eurorack.

Mainly because I like sampling and sample mangling a lot... just having a Clouds doesn't cut it for me. Also, sequencing options seem to be more 'creative' than on the 5U side. There's more audio-FX type goodies....

Also I'm starting to like the small format... I've tried to put my dotcom 22-space 'portable' cabinet in the kitchen the other day, for some cosy kitchen noodles, and it was HEAVY as hell, I might have displaced my shoulder. No I didn't.
Even more so, because it contains the heavy PSU.

So I'm basically looking into something that will adhere to my sampling/granular cravings in the first place. But it feels weird having to get all the bread and butter stuff all over again... VCA's, LFOs, mixers, random sources, filters and what not.
I.e. if I put it next to the 5U cabinets and I find a way to interface (cables with minijack on one end and jack on the other, or are there serious voltage issues?), that would solve the bread and butter issue pretty nicely for when in the studio.

and then, at the kitchen table, I would need to have SOME bread and butter stuff anyway...

Anyway, I'm probably not the first one to get into this format "twilight zone"...
Any thoughts on it?
Things to avoid? Is a format-mixed patch easy reality, or wishful thinking?
Is going "a bit Eurorack" like taking the first shot of Eurocrack? :zombie:

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by sduck » Mon Dec 30, 2019 11:38 am

It's like crack. That's why they call it eurocrack.

I started out with just a happy ending kit, and figured that would be enough for the few things I wanted to try. The 5U had gotten beyond huge, there can't be that much cool stuff in euro, right?

4 years later, this is where we're at -
IMG_1863.JPG
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And yes, it all plays nicely with the 5U - just get a pile of 3.5mm to 1/4" cables, and you're good.
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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by fac » Mon Dec 30, 2019 12:07 pm

Sure, why not? I like to explore not only different formats but also different environments and approaches to modular synthesis. At some point, I had MU, euro, Nord G1 and G2, plus software stuff like Audiomulch, VAZ and Puredata. I've sold the Nords since I no longer had the time for synths of such complexity, and now I only use Puredata rarely when I do a workshop or something. But I'm keeping the hardware modulars and have started again to use them more often. I rarely use them together as I prefer staying within each system's limitations, but each has their own sound and purpose, even if they are both have similar types of modules (VCOs, VCFs, VCAs, envelopes, step sequencers, no fancy digital stuff, etc).

When I decided to buy a hardware modular (15 years ago), I really wanted a Wiard 300 system, but they were hard to find and very expensive. I'm not even sure they were in production at the time. So my choices were either Synthesizers.com or Doepfer. After some research, I decided to get a dotcom system. Sometime around 2010, the Malekko/Wiard eurorack modules were released and I finally saw a chance to have a Wiard-based system. I planned for months and eventually settled for a 6U system; paid a guy to build me a cabinet but he made it 9U... hehe. I built my 6U system and then put my FR Mobius in the remaining 3U. Eventually, I decided to fill those 3U with more "experimental" modules for sequencing and algorithmic composition. In the meantime, the MU system kept growing until a couple weeks ago when I finally filled it.

I also Metalbox build me a 1U rack utility panel with 1/8" to 1/4" converters, a few multiples and a couple of passive attenuators for those times when I want to use the Eurorack and MU together. It's been pretty handy.

Right now, I don't see myself buying more modules or starting another system in the near future, but I would like to get some Buchla at some point. I have a Volca Modular, which I consider my poor man's Easel.

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by Dob » Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:40 pm

sduck wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 11:38 am
It's like crack. That's why they call it eurocrack.

4 years later, this is where we're at -
IMG_1863.JPG
That escalated quickly :party:
I'm very afraid this is my future. I mean, looking forward to it mentally, but not financially. Being confined to 5U is also a financial sanity measure, now I come to think of it.
sduck wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 11:38 am
And yes, it all plays nicely with the 5U - just get a pile of 3.5mm to 1/4" cables, and you're good.
That's nice!!

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by spinach_pizza » Mon Dec 30, 2019 2:26 pm

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by Flounderguts » Tue Dec 31, 2019 1:25 am

Yup. I have alternating rows of dotcom and euro. And a few rows of 1u tiles, too...

I built a jumbler patchbay panel that also works like a grid patchbay...that way I didn't need adapter cables.
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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by josaka » Tue Dec 31, 2019 2:01 am

Looking at the Behringer rack thing.. if its cheap enough (£150 ish) I may get some euro.. for the first time..
the system 100 and some of the sequencer time mashing euro are on the list.. metropolis voltage block/varigate etc.. :)

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by MrNezumi » Tue Dec 31, 2019 8:04 pm

Image

I just made a case for my Eurorack. I expanded from a 104hp metal skiff to a whooping 126hp wooden case. When it is filled, I’m done. I’ll sell the skiff soon. My modest 5u case also has room for a few more modules and it will be done.

My Eurorack case is mainly for clocking/basic sequencing and for sampling. I got the Eurorack to compliment my existing 5u and it does that nicely.
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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by whitewulfe » Wed Jan 01, 2020 10:26 pm

Much as I debated between the two formats when I first got into modular, I'm kind of thinking I might wind up going with both when I get back into such. Sure, it means twice as many patch cables, but both of them have their own unique charms, not to mention different versions on the word "insanity"...

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by Stereotactixxx » Thu Jan 02, 2020 5:32 am

Would I have preferred everything to be available in MU? Sure, but since it isn't, there is no good reason not to enhance your setup with some eurorack. Works like a charm.
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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by Dob » Sat Jan 04, 2020 11:24 am

Been contemplating where to start.
Whether a 104 hp skiff would suffice, for starters, or whether to think bigger. As in, 2 rows.

I'm very charmed by Make Noise Rene, Morphagene and Mimeophon. I'm thinking of these as the core of what I'd want. But also things like the Rainmaker or Spectral Multiband Resonator... Then some CV sources like Wogglebug, Maths, something with touch plates and a Mikrophony. Some visuals with Data. Some clocking.

Funny how my 5U focus is / was on oscs and filters, my Eurorack focus is on sampling, sequencing and fx.

I'm having a hard time deciding whether I really need the Eurorack part to be self-contained. That will very much influence the choice of modules.

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by sduck » Sat Jan 04, 2020 1:49 pm

Get a Mantis case by Tiptop Audio. They're great, inexpensive self contained little things that work great. I've got 2 of them.
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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by blw » Sun Jan 05, 2020 10:42 am

I have both a Euro and 5u system, and of course they work well (enough) together.

If your 5U is completely in a 22u case, however, I might give it a hard look and decide if what you have in it is truly unique and irreplaceable in Euro. If you got into the Euro flow, it’s functionality could possibly be replaced with a row of Doepfer or something, and having a pair of 6u suitcases, say, would be a truly portable system together that probably weighs less than one Dotcom 22. And could be subdivided to one case for your kitchen table or going on holiday, etc.

I go back and forth a bit between that kind of heresy and enjoying the big 5u lab equipment vibe myself, but there might be something to be said for the idea of one cohesive system if your 5u is relatively small.

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by Henfield » Sun Jan 05, 2020 5:24 pm

I have tried Euro (twice!) mainly due to portability. However, the form factor of small cables, small knobs, and cramped knobs has brought me back to 5U for good! I can find what I need in 5U and a few outboard effects, samplers, and sequencers.

Now I just need to find some equivalents for my Korg SQ-1 and Walking Stick Ribbon Controller which do not use 1/8” jacks!
For Sale/Trade: 14U 84 hp Euro case . Willing to trade towards MU Modules, Moogerfooger pedals, Minifooger pedals, and other interesting effects boxes that work well with modular, try me!

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by johny_gtr » Sun Jan 12, 2020 5:22 am

I have both MU and Euro systems.
I still prefer MU analog voices (Mos-Lab and Synth-Werk). They are perfect for melody lines. Sampling/looping/sequencing/random/drums are from euro. And FX is still so much better from dedicated boxes and racks. Eurorack is very addictive, but first perfect voice of MU is addictive too. I waited for my Mos-Lab system more than a year.

Now I have limit of euro system by two 6u x 104hp cases.
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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by synthetic » Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:50 pm

At least in my system, they're different approaches to sound. East Coast/West Coast. So I do a lot more sound design/FM/weird looping envelopes on the Euro stuff and more straight ahead stuff on my MOTM (because I like that sound better.) I also have several drum modules in Euro.

I just got a Beatstep Pro and I'm really impressed, especially for the price. But it's all 1/8" outputs of course. I never have enough 1/4"-1/8" cables. I use the mixer in my Euro (WMD Performance Mixer), send to a stereo delay pedal (more combo cables needed), Beatstep to the 5U, it gets confusing but fun. (Did I mention how cool the Beatstep Pro is? Three sequencers and I paid $150 for mine.)

All that said, I doubt I'll buy any more Euro. I'm hoping to build a new MU cabinet when I get the cash. Life keeps getting in the way.

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by Dob » Mon Jan 20, 2020 8:41 am

synthetic wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:50 pm
Image
Love that lamp! Egypt, Egypt!!!

Hmm. I'm configuring my "starting point". My inspiration is/was the Make Noise tape and microsound music machine. http://www.makenoisemusic.com/synthesiz ... ic-machine

As has been stated on this forum, it doesn't allow for much to add (10 hp), and has very minimal modulation sources.
So, I soon decided I needed a little more space. There are brilliant 7u cases out there, and the Make Noise CV Bus case for me stood out, as it provides a couple of things out of the box that I will need anyway. (headphone/output, signal visuals, mults, a 'cover', a handle)

I was all over Morphagene but got set back by the 30 page manual, and pressing (and having to remember) button combinations. I've seen Nebulae but it seems complex in a likewise way. Then I started reading / seeing Instruo's Arbhar and I seem to be resonating with the concept and visuals; to see what's going on is great, and I totally like the idea of the pitch being set at grain start, the grain trigger, and the option of using it as a wavetable osc. It's not stereo, which was a first setback, but I can live with that. And 10 seconds per part is enough for me. It looks like an ultra-Clouds, and then some.

Then, for randomness, I thought about MI Marbles, but I think it's a RTFM affair as well... lot's of things possible, but what's actually going on? I've read the manual, but discovered most of it was already puzzling again after a couple of days, looking back at the panel. I discovered there's also something called the Qu-bit Bloom, which checks a lot of boxes without being too complicated interface-wise. I.e. it's a master clock, a divider, an easy to program 2 channel sequencer, a random source, a sequence 'evolution' generator. I like the fact a lot that it can also just act as sequencer. I've read the whole manual and think it's very well thought out; lot's of options, but most things have a dedicated panel spot, and the leds give a logical visual at almost all the settings. Or even all. In the end I would (also) like a Rene, but that's just getting too expensive for now.

Then for utility and LFO/Env duties, of course, I'll need a Maths. Also, considering the DUSG is one of my favourite 5U tools. (Maths is similar in concept, right?)

And then, for FX, delay and reverby, I still think the Mimeophon is and will be great. But the Arbhar can do reverb itself if need be.

So I've come to this "starter" setup. It needs to be both usable on itself, and also complement my current 5U stuff.
https://www.modulargrid.net/e/racks/view/1101888

Things I like to add lateron;
MN Rene and/or Pressure Points, MN QPas, and of course way more utilities like VCA's/switches/mixers.

Any thoughts?

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by TimeRaveler » Mon Jan 20, 2020 10:31 am

Decided to add a little control skiff (4ms Pod 40x) to house a couple of the modules I've been jonesing for in euro. Theres a company called BKM Panels who make black Make Noise-style panels, and I've heard Planar2 is in the works, so I'll probably have to convert that once they do. Also added a little rubber vacuum cap to the joystick so I can touch it while playing the Pressure Points.
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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by MrNezumi » Mon Jan 20, 2020 1:14 pm

Nice, TimeRaveler! Is that a 2 hp blank?! Time to go to www.twohp.com and fill that up. :lol: :nana:

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by TimeRaveler » Mon Jan 20, 2020 1:38 pm

MrNezumi wrote:
Mon Jan 20, 2020 1:14 pm
Nice, TimeRaveler! Is that a 2 hp blank?! Time to go to www.twohp.com and fill that up. :lol: :nana:
Yes, homemade! I'd love to fill it with a 2hp sequential switch if one existed...but it does not :(

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by MrNezumi » Mon Jan 20, 2020 2:44 pm

2hp has a CV-able switch that may do the trick.

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by TimeRaveler » Mon Jan 20, 2020 5:53 pm

Yeah I saw that, but I'd really need it to switch with a trigger in order to get 8/12 note sequences out of the Pressure Points. I've actually been fading between sequences with the Planar, which is kind of interesting.

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by synthetic » Mon Jan 20, 2020 6:40 pm

Dob wrote:
Mon Jan 20, 2020 8:41 am
I was all over Morphagene but got set back by the 30 page manual, and pressing (and having to remember) button combinations. I've seen Nebulae but it seems complex in a likewise way. Then I started reading / seeing Instruo's Arbhar and I seem to be resonating with the concept and visuals; to see what's going on is great, and I totally like the idea of the pitch being set at grain start, the grain trigger, and the option of using it as a wavetable osc. It's not stereo, which was a first setback, but I can live with that. And 10 seconds per part is enough for me. It looks like an ultra-Clouds, and then some.
Weird left field idea, for the price of a Morphagene you could get a used iPad, throw an app like Enso on there and be looping like a champ with a much better interface and sampling time. Just need some kind of interface to plug it into the modular.

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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by electricanada » Mon Jan 20, 2020 8:41 pm

sduck wrote:
Sat Jan 04, 2020 1:49 pm
Get a Mantis case by Tiptop Audio. They're great, inexpensive self contained little things that work great. I've got 2 of them.
They’re self-limiting in that they don’t stack—which is a pro if you want to limit your growth, but a con if you don’t. You can easily make a stackable wood case the same size for a third of the price.
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Re: Eurorack, next to 5U?

Post by electricanada » Mon Jan 20, 2020 8:46 pm

Dob wrote:
Mon Jan 20, 2020 8:41 am

I was all over Morphagene but got set back by the 30 page manual, and pressing (and having to remember) button combinations.
I play Morphagene all day without using any button combos. They’re more for advanced setup and such. I have none memorized and don’t feel handicapped at all by that. You can get all the beautiful MG sounds and play them without any button combos. It’s really much more user-friendly than your impression of it.
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