MU/Dotcom format VCO comparison?

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GearMedia
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MU/Dotcom format VCO comparison?

Post by GearMedia » Fri May 10, 2013 10:02 am

My small Box11 system only has one Q106 oscillator at the moment and I'm looking at adding a couple more. I'm not worried about using them as LFOs as I'm ordering a dedicated 1U LFO soon. I'll have 4 spaces vacant but would like to add another envelope.

I see Corsynth has a new 2U wide C104 VCO with loads of flexibility …and the SSL VCO1 looks nice as it's only 1U wide which is helpful for conserving space. Both look shallow enough for a Box11 cabinet.

Do any MU owners here have either (or better yet both) to give me a rundown of the pros/cons in comparison to the Q106? Which one would you get & why? Are there other MU VCOs I should look into?

Xposted from /r/modular but they seem to be averse to anything other than eurocrack. :doh:

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Fri May 10, 2013 12:21 pm

COTK?
Oakley/Krisp1?
maybe. . . Check depths

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Post by fyvewytches » Fri May 10, 2013 1:22 pm

I have to say I like the look of the new Moon Modular VCO... I'm looking forward to an audio demo.

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Post by JohnLRice » Fri May 10, 2013 3:03 pm

fyvewytches wrote:I have to say I like the look of the new Moon Modular VCO... I'm looking forward to an audio demo.
:tu: :hyper:

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Post by krisp14u » Fri May 10, 2013 3:26 pm

JohnLRice wrote: Oakley/Krisp1?
maybe. . . Check depths
Both our VCOs will not fit in the box11
The only Oakley 5U modules that will fit are the Overdrive II and the LFO/Mult soon to be discontinued ;)
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Post by Ockeghem » Fri May 10, 2013 4:00 pm

krisp14u wrote:
JohnLRice wrote: Oakley/Krisp1?
maybe. . . Check depths
Both our VCOs will not fit in the box11
The only Oakley 5U modules that will fit are the Overdrive II and the LFO/Mult soon to be discontinued ;)
Despite this, the Oakley VCO sounds fab to me.
SSL looks like a really good choice for Box 11 8_)
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Post by Bryan B » Fri May 10, 2013 4:15 pm

The Corsynth VCO is great! I love the sound and it adds hard and soft clipping as well as a ringmod. Comparing just the VCO section to the Q106, I would say the Q106 has a better way of quickly selecting octaves. Both are great VCO's.
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Post by GearMedia » Fri May 10, 2013 6:12 pm

I saw the new Moon Modular dual VCO too and it too looks awesome. No info on it's depth though. At this point I'm actually thinking I might get the SSL AND the Corsynth VCOs and have the best of both worlds. That might leave room for the Happy Nerding super sawtor or something more odd.

Bryan B: If you can confirm for me that the Corsynth VCO is indeed under 3" deep I'll be eternally grateful.

Someone needs to make a database of MU modules that are confirmed to fit Box11 enclosures. Maybe I'll design a badge that manufacturers can put on their websites to verify compatibility like Microsoft does for pc manufacturers… "Box11 Certified" or something. Maybe not.

I might just have to bite the bullet and build a larger cabinet for some of those tasty looking deeper modules. I like the Box11 in theory but in practice It seems to be forcing me to make too many compromises.

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Post by Just me » Fri May 10, 2013 6:29 pm

Develop a "Box 11D" that is 5" deep!
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Post by Thalassa » Fri May 10, 2013 7:01 pm

GearMedia wrote:Bryan B: If you can confirm for me that the Corsynth VCO is indeed under 3" deep I'll be eternally grateful.
Hello GearMedia, all Corsynth modules have less than 2" deep as you can see in the photo.

Image

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Post by GearMedia » Fri May 10, 2013 7:25 pm

Awesome! It looked really shallow from that photo but I wanted to be 100% sure. Thanks!

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Sat May 11, 2013 12:42 pm

I'm told the new Moon 501D dual VCO will be only 3" deep. :tu:

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Post by nlaudadio » Sun May 12, 2013 2:32 pm

Dang. That's the thing with Moon, they hit you with an awesome VCO and follow up with 2U more of more-awesomer expanders. Must stay away.

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Post by TimeRaveler » Wed Mar 04, 2015 12:07 am

I too have been wondering about the actual sound of the Corsynth VCO vs Dotcom, are there any comparisons using the same filter? I know I love all the Corsynth demos but can't figure out if its the filter or osc that I'm digging. (Arps and Rolands make up most my favorite synths, so maybe its a bit of both).

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Post by placidhouse » Wed Mar 04, 2015 5:23 am

TimeRaveler, not sure if this is what you're looking for but i found it on page 2 of this thread. no filter though, just raw waveforms and sync sound.


http://soundcloud.com/corsynth/c104vsq106

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Post by alternating.bit » Wed Mar 04, 2015 9:44 am

I have the Corsynth C104 and love it. Indeed that RM output is sweet.
The one significant drawback in my opinion of the C104 is the Frequency adjustment being a dialing knob vs a clicker like the Dotcom or Oakley, etc.
Other VCOs I can sync up and change octaves easier with a click, but I suppose it's a preference thing. The Corsynth does sound really nice though, and you may prefer to have VCO variety in your box vs two Q106s.
Yeah, those Oakleys are nice, but DEEP. I could barely fit them into my portable box, but it's a different box all together. My case has a slant to it (for DJ mixers) so I couldn't fit any Oakley modules in the top row.

Image

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Post by TimeRaveler » Wed Mar 04, 2015 12:29 pm

Thanks placidhouse, I those are good demos, especially the limited pw.

The raw wave forms sound very similar, so it's really the extra features that set it apart for me.

Don't know if I see octave switches as a plus or minus, sometimes you want a big manual sweep, probably best to have one with and one without.

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Post by placidhouse » Wed Mar 04, 2015 4:23 pm

the noticeable difference, for me, was in the low end. the 104 sounds like it has a grit to it. regardless, they sound great solo and mixed. i definitely see this as a future purchase.

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Post by Squattamolie » Wed Mar 04, 2015 5:59 pm

I have both and like both. What you are paying for with the SSL is the form factor, the fact that it's in a single space. What you give up for that is all the little conveniences that you don't think a lot about until you're patching, things like an attenuator for the PWM input, or the fact that they have a single 1V/oct input - so if you want to (say) combine the outputs of a sequencer and a keyboard, you need to mix them. This is in no way meant to put down the SSL, I bought 2 for the system at the school, and I would again. The aspect of not having switchable octaves like the Q106 is both good and bad. It's not as convenient with not having an octave switch, but it's great to be able to just grab the knob and bang the pitch up, say, and octave plus a perfect fifth.

The Corsynth impressed me enough that I got a second one, these are in my personal system. They kind of split the difference in convenience between the Q106 octave switch and the SSL continuous range, this is a feature I have grown to really like. You have coarse and fine continuous control, but also an octave switch with 3 settings, so if you tune one (say) with the octave switch all the way up, you have a 1-octave down and a 2-octave down immediately switchable, etc. The extra features like the diode soft clipping and the ring mod are things that'll I'll just ignore for a month or so, and then suddenly in the middle of a patching session, will start going bonkers with them and they add a lot. Last patch I had the saw out from each of the 2 C104 going into the STG mixer, then also took the DSC out (being modulated by a slow LFO) from each, and also fed those into the STG - really big, warm, wooly sounding, lots of fun.

One thing to be aware of about both is that neither can go really slow (I can't recall, but I think each bottoms out around 4 or 5 Hz.?) - this isn't a problem, as you've said you bought a dedicated LFO. And now that I think about it, maybe you could input an offset in the CV inputs to slow them down more (I'll have to try and see).

What I think the two have in common are: top notch build quality and attention to detail, great sound, and both guys (Doug and Pablo) are not only truly nice people who clearly love this stuff, but both of them have communicated with me and treated me in a way that makes me want to buy everything they make.

IMO you cannot go wrong with either.

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Post by sonicwarrior » Thu Mar 05, 2015 3:46 am

alternating.bit wrote:The one significant drawback in my opinion of the C104 is the Frequency adjustment being a dialing knob vs a clicker like the Dotcom or Oakley
'Clicker'? Do you mean an octave switch? The Dotcom has a rotary switch for that.

The C104 has a three-way octave switch. How many octaves do you need to switch? :hmm:
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Post by Henfield » Thu Mar 05, 2015 6:51 am

The other advantage of a Q106 is that the PCB is small enough that you can repanel it into a 1MU wide panel!

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Post by alternating.bit » Thu Mar 05, 2015 8:22 am

Henfield wrote:The other advantage of a Q106 is that the PCB is small enough that you can repanel it into a 1MU wide panel!

Image
:woah: That's brilliant. Is the wav shape switch for LFO output shape or basic wave shape selection via the standard 'output' jack? (...or both?)
sonicwarrior wrote:'Clicker'? Do you mean an octave switch? The Dotcom has a rotary switch for that.

The C104 has a three-way octave switch. How many octaves do you need to switch? :hmm:
Yes, that's what I meant. Q106 has 6 choices vs 3. I guess I just like the quick, defined selection that's easy to match with other VCOs.

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Post by sonicwarrior » Thu Mar 05, 2015 8:43 am

For me switching three octaves is enough. But I also have a guitar tuner, so fast tuning ain't a big problem. Also in different intervals then only octaves.
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Post by Henfield » Thu Mar 05, 2015 1:03 pm

alternating.bit wrote: :woah: That's brilliant. Is the wav shape switch for LFO output shape or basic wave shape selection via the standard 'output' jack? (...or both?)
The Wave Shape switch is for the output, whether it is used for audio or LFO. Many of Synthesizer.com's PCB have extra inputs already on the PCB for the "Aid" modules. The Aid for the Q106 has a waveform switch and a single output, which helped me pare down the jacks required for all of the different waveforms. I also added a separate output for the square wave, but I could also hook that up to any of the waveform ouputs on the PCB to switch which waveform is on its own dedicated output. You can get these panels from Resynthesis, but you will have to either solder up your own 6 way rotary switch, have someone make it for you, or take apart a Q141 Oscillator Aid to get the 6 way rotary switch with the correct connector, as Roger will not sell one to you.
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Post by alternating.bit » Thu Mar 05, 2015 5:05 pm

Henfield wrote:or take apart a Q141 Oscillator Aid to get the 6 way rotary switch with the correct connector, as Roger will not sell one to you.
I love the oscillator aid! Having that knob for wave selection is awesome :tu:

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