Understanding the Krell Patch

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fhars
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Understanding the Krell Patch

Post by fhars » Sun Apr 17, 2016 4:20 pm

The Krell patch and its derivatives seems to be quite popular around here, and I always found it a bit challenging to figure out what is does, because most posts I have found that try to explain these kind of patches are accompanied by pictures of tangles of wires connecting moderately complex modules. So I finally tracked down a relatively readable picture of what someone linked to as the original Barton Krell patch and followed all the wires and cross checked the unreadable fine print on the modules with pictures on the BEMI site and drew a schematic of the patch. Maybe others find it helpful, too:

Image

The sound generation is driven by the cycling function generator in the center, with relatively short attack and decay times (the attack and decay pots on the 281e Quad Function Generator are set to 0.3, maybe seconds). It produces and AD envelope that controlls the VCA, and an End Of Cycle trigger (which should better be seen as a start of next cycle trigger here, that makes it easier to see what happens). Every time this trigger fires, the Stored Random Voltages module produces a new quantized pitch CV value, that is fed into the VCO, and then the audio out is sent through the VCA (which seems to be called a Dynamics Manager in Buchla land) controlled by the envelope and finally a band pass filter. So far this is a quite staightforward monophonic architecture.

The original patch uses another slowly cycling function generator (attack and decay set to three) as an LFO to control the timbre of the VCO, which seems to be some kind of wavetable oscillator.

The Stored Random Voltages module has its range and chaos controls set to maximum.

The long term development is driven by two Fluctuating Random Voltage channels set to low, but different rates of change. The slower one directly controls the skew parameter of the Stored Random Voltages which determines if it tends to select lower or higher pitches, while the other one controls the centre frequency of the filter. Additionally, they control two more slowly cycling functions generators via their decay respectively attack parameters, which in turn control the attack and decay times of the function generator that controls the audio generation. So when the attack time of the audio envelope decays slowly, the SRV preferentially selects high notes, although I am not sure if it is possible to hear this correlation.

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Dcramer
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Post by Dcramer » Sun Apr 17, 2016 4:49 pm

Awesome :tu: nice to see!

Here's a little vid I did a couple of years ago detailing a Euro version:
[video][/video]
I had to do a lot of Buchla research to figure out the equivalent module functions. Mine is a little different in that it's two voiced and the second voice is chords, that change root and quality, derived from the melody, but less frequently. My melody voice makes use of a highly correlated Wavefolder/ring mod patch, but doesn't have the high/low note tempo correlation. :party:

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Post by Dr. Sketch-n-Etch » Sun Apr 17, 2016 10:07 pm

Well, that's just about the best Krell patch I've heard, and I still maintain that Krell music is a real advance in synthesizer technology, and somebody should make a whole album of this stuff (if they haven't already). Back in the day, it would have been released on Nonesuch.
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Post by FatBob » Mon Apr 18, 2016 6:01 am

Great stuff!

We must keep the Krell thread going.

viewtopic.php?t=68872&highlight=

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Post by Dcramer » Mon Apr 18, 2016 8:15 am

Dr. Sketch-n-Etch wrote:Well, that's just about the best Krell patch I've heard, and I still maintain that Krell music is a real advance in synthesizer technology, and somebody should make a whole album of this stuff (if they haven't already). Back in the day, it would have been released on Nonesuch.
Thanks :oops:
I did actually do such an album, based on Krell and Dream Machine patching.
I've actually complicated the patch in two ways, one by creating a much more complex changing resonant melody voice, and two by introducing a Form Engine which alters the whole patch throughout.
[video][/video]
Next I start work on a fully polyphonic Krell patch :cloud:

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Post by carlosnyb » Mon Apr 18, 2016 9:01 pm

The Barton method can be boiled down to:

3 patterns w/ cv-influenced duration (vc lfo, vc envelope or slew, whatever has a shape and can be adjusted sufficiently by cv input to affect overall pattern duration)

2 different varying voltages to influence 2 of the patterns w/ cv-influenced duration

1 pattern w/ cv-influenced duration will be influenced by the other two patterns w/ cv-influenced duration, can be used for dynamics/volume cv, and at its end of cycle sample/hold will be triggered to capture 1 somewhat randomly varying voltage for pitch.
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Post by DanPacific » Tue Apr 19, 2016 11:46 am

Dcramer Those Krell patches are absolutely stunning! The way you've integrated chords in the patch is amazing and I feel really inspired to try something similar. Unfortunately, I don't have any chord generating module, but I have a quantimator, so maybe I can work around it somehow...

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Post by strangegravity » Tue Apr 19, 2016 1:22 pm

me too dumb

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Post by jimmie » Tue Apr 19, 2016 1:32 pm

Dcramer, that's SO good (Enigma's also fantastic)! Love your stuff. This is really getting to contemporary classical music. I guess you like Zappa by the way :hihi:

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Post by strangegravity » Tue Apr 19, 2016 2:08 pm

This is really awesome by the way. If I can figure it out I want to throw the QuBit Nebulae in there.

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Post by Abyssinianloop » Tue Apr 19, 2016 5:17 pm

Thanks for doing this work! Also, I admire your hole-punching.

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pitri
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Post by pitri » Mon Apr 25, 2016 8:39 am

I tried this last night - didnt really work out to be very krellish, but very random though once i threw the woggle into the mix. better luck next time

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Post by JamieH » Tue Apr 26, 2016 1:35 pm

I am still trying to get my head around it, but I know I love it, Krell type of patches are pretty much the reason I got into modular.

I love the Krell patch Jedi Master Barton did for the easel, I seem to gravitate to it every time I get the easel out.

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Post by Heliophile » Thu Apr 28, 2016 11:15 am

Fantastic sounds and explanations, Dcramer!!! :sb:
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Post by goom » Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:19 pm

DCramer - that is an EXCELLENT PATCH! :sb:

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Re: Understanding the Krell Patch

Post by PeterDeVault » Sun May 01, 2016 8:15 am

fhars wrote:The Krell patch and its derivatives seems to be quite popular around here, and I always found it a bit challenging to figure out what is does, because most posts I have found that try to explain these kind of patches are accompanied by pictures of tangles of wires connecting moderately complex modules. So I finally tracked down a relatively readable picture of what someone linked to as the original Barton Krell patch and followed all the wires and cross checked the unreadable fine print on the modules with pictures on the BEMI site and drew a schematic of the patch. Maybe others find it helpful, too:

Image
Hi fhars - Would you mind posting your diagram again? I was staring at it for a few days but when I reloaded my browser window after a restart, the link appeared to be broken. I'm hoping to play around with the concept today. Thanks!
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fhars
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Post by fhars » Sun May 01, 2016 9:27 am

Interesting... it just vanished from my list of uploaded pictures. Maybe it fell victim to the same gremlin that ate the search function. Should be back now.
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Post by PeterDeVault » Sun May 01, 2016 12:35 pm

Thanks! :guinness:
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Post by PrimateSynthesis » Sun May 01, 2016 3:53 pm

Dcramer wrote:Awesome :tu: nice to see!

Here's a little vid I did a couple of years ago detailing a Euro version:
:hail:

Awesome synthesis :tu:

(I would have rolled some of the high end off the master, although what I'm hearing might be the result of YouTube's craptacular sound quality :despair: )

Anyway, the picture in the first post is working again :banana:
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Post by Dcramer » Sun May 01, 2016 10:41 pm

PrimateSynthesis wrote:
Dcramer wrote:Awesome :tu: nice to see!

Here's a little vid I did a couple of years ago detailing a Euro version:
:hail:

Awesome synthesis :tu:

(I would have rolled some of the high end off the master, although what I'm hearing might be the result of YouTube's craptacular sound quality :despair: )

Anyway, the picture in the first post is working again :banana:
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Post by Don T » Sun May 01, 2016 11:10 pm

Dcramer wrote:Awesome :tu: nice to see!

Here's a little vid I did a couple of years ago detailing a Euro version:
[video][/video]
I had to do a lot of Buchla research to figure out the equivalent module functions. Mine is a little different in that it's two voiced and the second voice is chords, that change root and quality, derived from the melody, but less frequently. My melody voice makes use of a highly correlated Wavefolder/ring mod patch, but doesn't have the high/low note tempo correlation. :party:
:jawdrop:

:hail:

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Post by gonkulator » Mon May 02, 2016 11:14 pm

I'm confused as to how something "Krell" doesn't refer to the original music created by the Barrons in 1956, and instead refers to a Buchla based patch, which wasn't even around in 1956. What am I missing?
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Post by MacroDX » Tue May 03, 2016 8:12 am

gonkulator wrote:I'm confused as to how something "Krell" doesn't refer to the original music created by the Barrons in 1956, and instead refers to a Buchla based patch, which wasn't even around in 1956. What am I missing?
Mainly because the original music wasn´t a modular patch but tape music.
The Krell patch however tries to reproduce the original not only sonically but also in terms of composition, using a certain degree of randomness with yet a recurring pattern.
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Post by strangegravity » Wed May 04, 2016 10:07 am

OK I got one. How do I patch it.

Image

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Post by chvad » Wed May 04, 2016 1:21 pm

Dr. Sketch-n-Etch wrote:Well, that's just about the best Krell patch I've heard, and I still maintain that Krell music is a real advance in synthesizer technology, and somebody should make a whole album of this stuff (if they haven't already). Back in the day, it would have been released on Nonesuch.
I finished one a couple of years ago but the video part of it held things up for quite a while. It SHOULD be out on Silber Records in the next few months... I'll def share here...

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