Large system organization and patching techniques

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nsolarz
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Large system organization and patching techniques

Post by nsolarz » Sun Feb 21, 2021 7:36 pm

I am "graduating" to a Doepfer monster stack (8x168hp) up from my 6x150 hp case I have now. At this point, I'll be exceeding my patch cable lengths for any sort of cross-case runs. For those of you with equally larger, or larger systems, do you have any tips or techniques when it comes to system layout. Do you take in ergonomics into account (sitting vs standing for example). Does your system follow a set signal path, or is it more sporadic?

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IEC
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Re: Large system organization and patching techniques

Post by IEC » Sun Feb 21, 2021 7:49 pm

mines standing... i just grouped things into different sections, like i have the drums top left, synths top right, filters lower left, utilities/overflow bottom right and the long thin case along the bottom is a control/output section. I previously would group things so in my typical patch the cable lengths were all as short as possible (due to not having enough long cables mostly) but system is so big now that its just too hard to do this and it was a lot easier to just buy more longer patch cables and make a big mess...
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acgenerator
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Re: Large system organization and patching techniques

Post by acgenerator » Sun Feb 21, 2021 7:59 pm

I use the magical Muffwiggler search function to see if this question was asked a billion times already. (hint: it has)

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dubonaire
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Re: Large system organization and patching techniques

Post by dubonaire » Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:46 am

I have a Doepfer 6x168. Base plus 12U. I don't really follow much of a plan now, I just have lots of long cables.

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IEC
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Re: Large system organization and patching techniques

Post by IEC » Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:49 am

acgenerator wrote:
Sun Feb 21, 2021 7:59 pm
I use the magical Muffwiggler search function to see if this question was asked a billion times already. (hint: it has)
:yay:

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Pelsea
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Re: Large system organization and patching techniques

Post by Pelsea » Mon Feb 22, 2021 6:22 pm

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A bit of planning and organization can result in an easy to manage large system. I have a medium sized system with a span of 252 hp. There are 26 126 hp Units, including a pair of 1U strips.The system is in four cases, each case focused on the type of control: MIDI wind instrument, CV from the laptop, a battleship sequencer (soon to get a buddy), and a drone/ambient case. The wind instrument case and the computer driven case separate for performances. The heart of each case is a pair of rows with audio modules in the upper and CVs and utilities in the lower row. The modules are arranged to provide voices-- sources, processors, VCAs in the top and (overflow audio), utilities, CV generators and an output mixer below. The number of voices ranges from 2 to 6. This is essentially a stack of smaller instruments, each with its own personality, although of course any module in the system can be patched anywhere.

I definitely considered ergonomics in the design. The shape of the case follows the arc of my arm, the top is even with my eyes (sitting down), and the most often used controls are mostly on the desk. Combined with a decent chair, I have a very comfortable workspace. (Not shown to the left is my large studio mixer and a Mac Pro with a DAW that can be patched in if the spirit moves me.)

I don't fuss with super long patch cords--when I need to go a long way, I connect two together with one of these:
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Dcramer
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Re: Large system organization and patching techniques

Post by Dcramer » Mon Feb 22, 2021 11:06 pm

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Mine is designed all the way across, bottom to top, with controllers in front, sequencers on the bottom, functions/utilities next, oscillators/ LFOs in the middle, filters/shapers 2nd from the top, and FX/mixers/VCAs on the top.
I follow this layout fairly well other than the left side which has percussion modules and a Doepfer vocoder mushed in there.
This makes it easy to create voices from the bottom up, but I’ve also got some 4 foot cables and multi along the rack edges to patch lengthwise.
It’s easy to stand and patch but with all the controllers down low I can sit and wiggle away :hyper:

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indigoid
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Re: Large system organization and patching techniques

Post by indigoid » Mon Feb 22, 2021 11:35 pm

My main system (Doepfer monster base + 12u monster case) is arranged by manufacturer because typically when I want a <thing>, I know which manufacturer I want it from.

The rest is mostly a mess.
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Re: Large system organization and patching techniques

Post by nostalghia » Tue Feb 23, 2021 11:52 am

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Transistor
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Re: Large system organization and patching techniques

Post by Transistor » Tue Feb 23, 2021 11:58 am

I happened to have rearranged my whole system last weekend for the first time in years. Strikes me I should do that more often as a new layout provokes a different patching approach for me. But that’s another topic... my own notes unedited as I was trying to plan approach;

Reconfigure modules in order of priority, playability and most often tweaked. Start low-center and expand outwards in circular fashion. Balance with central modules which are communicating most, I.e., VCAs... Spread out utilities across. Attenuators and multiples not close to each other

Priority;
1. Sequencing, precision adder, quantizers, gates and controllers (base row)
2. Filters (third row [tilted] center, best ergonomics)
3. Envelopes (second row)
VCA VCA VCA (second row)
4. FX (fourth row center to right)
5. OSCs (second and third rows, left and right- not center)
6. Mixers (fourth row left to center)

Deviated a bit here and there with progressive elaboration while putting everything is, stuck to the plan mostly and really like the flow now. Drum system to the far left and to the right of my main system I ended up putting some modules that just don’t get too much attention but which I don’t want to part with either.
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