They weren't kidding when they said options were plentiful

Anything modular synth related that is not format specific.

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whitewulfe
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They weren't kidding when they said options were plentiful

Post by whitewulfe » Sat Oct 23, 2010 6:56 am

Well, after lurking here for a while (and putting in a few words here and there on a few threads), I figured it would be best to finally step out of the shadows and actually say hi.

Yes, I'll admit, this will probably turn into another of the various (infamous?) "help me narrow things down" threads, although at this point I haven't exactly worked out which format I would like to go with, even after having spent a reasonable amount of time looking into such.

Initially I was looking into the Doepfer Basic System 2 (three years or so when I accidentally came upon modular synthesis, thinking they were the only company offering such), however at a cost of $2,600 USD or so, I find such a touch expensive for "starting out". A while later I discovered Synthesis technology, but at the time I considered such a system "too large", possibly due to the fact I was living in a fairly small room that had to hold all my stuff (ah, the joys of roommates).

Anyways, now that I've got more room to work with things (moving to an even larger place in the near future), I'm finally looking at building a modular synthesizer setup. I have no real experience with such systems beyond having fiddled around with Propellerheads' Reason (v3 and 4) software. Given the appeal of the DOTcom starter system, I'd say the budget I'm looking at is $1,500-$1,600 CAD, however such could potentially be stretched to $2k.

Things like DIY/kits don't phase me, even though I haven't touched a Weller for almost ten years now, hence why the whole 5U seems to appeal to me. On the flipside, there are quite a few drool-worthy EuroRack options out there, especially from The Harvestman, Flight of Harmony, Metasonix, and of course Livewire, although some of those companies have DIY offerings that sound like they wouldn't be too too difficult to adapt to whatever format I wind up going with in the end. My only worry at the moment is, at least for DIY, my woodworking skills, but I'm a quick learner, and hey, that's why they invented libraries full of information on such things *grins*

So here's the inevitable question. For doing styles that fall somewhere into a mix-mash of DnB, industrial, gabber hard house, and hardstyle, which formats would you guys think would be best for such, and reasonings behind such recommendations? For examples on stylings of music I'd say slightly similar to artists such as "Robot Death Squad" (DnB, favourite track as an example would be "Supercharger (Feat. Hyx)), Pendulum (DnB, tracks along the lines of "Slam", "Blood Sugar(2004)", "Axle Grinder", "Fasten Your Seatbelt"), Noisia (DnB, tracks "End Game"), Sunchase (DnB, track "Save us"), Combichrist ("industrial", tracks "F**K That S**t", "Sent To Destroy", "Today I Woke To The Rain of Blood", "Joy of the World"), Imperative Reaction ("industrial", tracks "Minus All", "Drown", "As We Fall"), Icon Of Coil ("industrial", tracks "Shallow Nation (2004 Remix)", "Floorkiller (2004 Version)"), Wumpscut ("industrial", tracks "War", "Embryodead"), Neophyte (gabber, "This one is for You"), The Stunned Guys (gabber, "Thrillseeker", "You Will Survive"), Angerfist (gabber, "Dance With The Wolves", "Revenge (done with Nico E Tetta)"), Matt R (hardstyle, "Deathmatch"), Sparx (hardstyle, "Satan's Little Helper"), Konflict (DnB, "Messiah (Spor Remix)"), and for hard house I'll just say Dark by Design >.> ...That list is longer than I was planning, sorry about that.

I've no hard leanings either direction in the 1/8" versus 1/4" jacks, although one could state there's a slight bias towards 1/4" jacks merely due to the fact that I'm familiar with such.

As for casing, I've no problem with semi-portable "studio styled" enclosures, although later on in the future portability very well might be something in the plans (be it live PA or just dragging it.. somewhere).

TL;DR/Summary: I'm looking for a semi-portable setup that's flexible, and can do raw/crunchy yet melodic basses as well as leads/melodies, and can't make up my mind as to which format to dive into initially, and am seeking advice on such.

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Post by revtor » Sat Oct 23, 2010 8:45 am

find someone near you with some stuff and play around..

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Post by bwhittington » Sat Oct 23, 2010 9:05 am

5U is for boys and Euro is for girls. It really is that simple. :lol:

No really, as of like last week or something, I have both now and another modular format as well. And I have lots of personal opinions on that gear that matter more than anyone else's, but the bottom line is that these tools are extensions of ourselves and we get no more or less out of them than the creativity we bring to them. Folks have gotten sounds and rhythms that facilitate the style you are interested in out of all this stuff . . . and other people could barely make the same system bleep.

Some people lean towards the the crazy though seemingly (to me) less unified concept of the Euro. Some people take stodgy "vanilla" 5U and make it totally purr. You seem familiar with the different ranges, and something is calling out to you. Pick a direction, start with something small but intriguing to you, maybe get a word of advice on what might be missing from that set up from us kindly folks in the know, and let your needs dictate your next purchase. In my opinion, it really is as simple as just giving it a shot.

But if you have a large penis, you'll pick 5U. :tu:

Cheers,
Brian

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Post by mome rath » Sat Oct 23, 2010 9:56 am

access virus
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Post by revtor » Sat Oct 23, 2010 12:39 pm

Used Euro or PAIA frack. start small, start cheap. Build skills and knowledge of what you want module-wise. You know what music you like - great. This does not translate in any real way to a module format or brand. So start small and cheap and grow from there. You will learn quickly where your patching leans sound wise and with knoledge you can then see what modules you might like.

we could all recommend anything and youll have fun with it, seriously.

look through the for sale posts and get some things used, play and learn. this is a long journey. If you want it to be: spend, done. then go for the virus or ante up and spend 2-3 g's off the bat for a full system.

~Steve

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Post by decaying.sine » Sat Oct 23, 2010 12:50 pm

bwhittington wrote:5U is for boys and Euro is for girls. It really is that simple. :lol:

No really, as of like last week or something, I have both now and another modular format as well. And I have lots of personal opinions on that gear that matter more than anyone else's, but the bottom line is that these tools are extensions of ourselves and we get no more or less out of them than the creativity we bring to them. Folks have gotten sounds and rhythms that facilitate the style you are interested in out of all this stuff . . . and other people could barely make the same system bleep.

Some people lean towards the the crazy though seemingly (to me) less unified concept of the Euro. Some people take stodgy "vanilla" 5U and make it totally purr. You seem familiar with the different ranges, and something is calling out to you. Pick a direction, start with something small but intriguing to you, maybe get a word of advice on what might be missing from that set up from us kindly folks in the know, and let your needs dictate your next purchase. In my opinion, it really is as simple as just giving it a shot.

But if you have a large penis, you'll pick 5U. :tu:

Cheers,
Brian
+1 on the large penis aspect. 8_)

There are great offerings in both the big format and euro realms.

If I were to start completely over again from scratch knowing what I know now, I might consider building a wooden rack (with wood rails) and the rack would have rows for both MOTM format and euro format. The distro board issue is easily solved and you can get power-one supplies for +/- 12 and 15 VDC (same ones, just trimmed to 12 or 15) for $40-$45 bucks for 3/3.4 amps on ebay. Portability is not a huge concern for me. If it is for you, just make the whole rig smaller and use PSU's that are about 1-1.5 amps in size. You can easily mount MU modules and MOTM modules side by side if you use the wood rails.

Anyways, just throwing out an option to go in both directions.
Brian
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Post by dude » Sat Oct 23, 2010 1:10 pm

what i did was start buying the things that looked awesome to me (plus necessary utility stuff) and get involved in the forum to try to make use of other peoples experience. i find the most useful bits tend to come in unlikely places as opposed to the the obvious 'help me build my system' threads. those obvious threads can be great to see what LOTS of people do. you may find certain aspects of certain users systems are attractive. let people guide by example. look at the system pic threads. anyway, if you just find some stuff and start making sounds, your experience as opposed to intellectual bs will guide you. try to get stuff little by little and realize that each time you add to your system with even simple passive modules, you greatly augment the patching possibilities. i as well as likely many other folks would be glad to discuss more specifics over pm if ever you had any questions. if you like 1/4" jacks and don't mind bigger heavier casing/units and are possibly into the idea of sdiy and are fairly patient, then 5u may be more for you. if you like fast paced immediacy small/diverse extreme functional density and non standard design philosophy as well as shoddy power supplies, well then euro is for you. and if you want to go straight for the unicorn penis then just grab some serge and/or buchla and your spaceship will look a lot more interesting. as bwhitt stated, anybody can do just about anything with any system. your patching balls will dictate what sounds you end up with.

oh and i impatiently didn't read your whole post so if you covered half or all of what i commented on then please disregard my raving.
happy mufflating

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Post by goiks » Sat Oct 23, 2010 1:17 pm

going 3u doesn't mean that you can't diy modules normally associated with 5u. you may just have to get creative with pcb mounting, and have two different power supplies in your cabinet (or 12v and 15v cabinets). i have many 15v 3u modules, with 1/8 jacks. (dual mankato, klee sequencer, t. henry mega percussive synth, cgs master divider/slope detector).

also, the woodworking for a basic cabinet is so basic that you shouldn't have any trouble if you can use a circular saw, sandpaper, and a drill. or use an ikea rast cabinet.

and, if you're smart enough to patch a synth, you can learn what you need to know about hooking up a power supply.

mixing 1/4" and 1/8" jacks can slow patching down a bit, i prefer to have all my modules have the same size jacks.

when i started i was open to all formats that i could afford and were readily available used. that has evolved into a totally 3u, 1/8" jack setup with plenty of diy stuff.

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Post by whitewulfe » Sat Oct 23, 2010 1:21 pm

bwhittington wrote:No really, as of like last week or something, I have both now and another modular format as well. And I have lots of personal opinions on that gear that matter more than anyone else's, but the bottom line is that these tools are extensions of ourselves and we get no more or less out of them than the creativity we bring to them. Folks have gotten sounds and rhythms that facilitate the style you are interested in out of all this stuff . . . and other people could barely make the same system bleep.
I'll admit, if I had the money, I'd seriously consider just picking up 9U of euro, and 15U or so of MOTM/DOTcom, both in rackmount, but after having done all that reading and following of various peoples' experiences, I'd much sooner start off with only a few basic modules and go from there, probably why the DOTcom Starter System seems to curiously intriguing...
bwhittington wrote:Some people lean towards the the crazy though seemingly (to me) less unified concept of the Euro. Some people take stodgy "vanilla" 5U and make it totally purr. You seem familiar with the different ranges, and something is calling out to you. Pick a direction, start with something small but intriguing to you, maybe get a word of advice on what might be missing from that set up from us kindly folks in the know, and let your needs dictate your next purchase. In my opinion, it really is as simple as just giving it a shot.
That is an interesting way to put the comparison between the two "standards", although i do have to admit the unifed appearance of most 5U modules (aka black in colour, with there seeming to be a commonly accepted way of lining up patching jacks/points) does have me lean somewhat in that direction. Some of the modules I've been looking at (specifically those from Flight) are available as DIY versions, and I think there's even the option to order it with 1/4" jacks (although such is mostly assumption from the Plague Bearer barebones page: "The PBBP can be customized, however, with different knob colors, extra jacks, different format jacks, or even with the pots supplied loose and headers attached to the PCB instead.")

The EuroRack "crazyness" has an appeal to me, however at the same time, having to decide between half a dozen VCOs and six million VCFs makes it a touch harder (at least in my mind) to decide on a smaller starter system. DOTcom/MOTM's smaller offerings would probably coax me into the initial purchase sooner, simply due to the lower amount of modules I'd have to sift through to get it all started.

Another company that is of interest (even more so after people posted more melodic and not as destructive videos) are modules from The Harvestman and Metasonix, and some of their modules are the main reason why I'm having slight difficulties deciding between the two formats (especially given just how gorgeous the Polivoks VCF is). I'm sure that later on down the road I could add a Wretch machine to get the Metasonix "sound".

Yet another reason I tend to lean towards 5U is the availability of DIY kits. I absolutely -LOVE- building things, and there's just something about diving headfirst into a schematic. Oh, and the fact that cost tends to be lower with DIY, and initial expenses (read, a good soldering iron) would be recuperated in fairly short order. As well, at first glance, it seems a lot of the eurorack DIY stuff can be easily converted to 5U.

Originally I was thinking that 5U was cheaper, but comparing a few select modules (say, a VCO) between companies like Doepfer, DOTcom, and MOTM shows they're all generally around the same price point for assembled and tested modules (A-100 is $199 USD, Q-106 is $195 USD, and the MOTM-300 is.. Okay, I lied, it's $449 so not exactly usable in this comparison).
bwhittington wrote:But if you have a large penis, you'll pick 5U. :tu:
Nah, mine's only average. Do I still qualify? :P

mome rath wrote:access virus
I am curious about you recommending the Virus, and reasoning behind such. I am interested in one, but right now $3,200 CAD for the TI2 Keyboard is a touch pricey ... Err, $3,000 CAD - amazing what exchange rates can do. Sure, the rackmount version is $800 CAD less (putting it just out of range of my extended budget), but then there's the issue of getting sounds out of it (aka i currently do not own a MIDI keyboard). I do know the Virus B seems to be a staple, and almost holy grail of certain types of industrial music (kind of obvious when half the industrial bands coming through Suburbs have at least one, and a good chunk of the local industrial producers either lust after it or have one).

At the price point of a new Virus TI, I'd probably be more willing to purchase a Vostok, as that suitcase synth has quite the lovely raw crunchiness to it while also featuring a semi-modular build (and pin matrix!). It's also $2,600 CAD through Moog Music, putting it out of my current budget.

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Post by dude » Sat Oct 23, 2010 1:39 pm

i think mr mome was joking

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Post by dude » Sat Oct 23, 2010 1:41 pm

ya'know, it would be hilarious and informative if we could do some sort of time-lapse style movies of people and their experiences/snags/module lists (bought/sold) and how they built their 'system'

clearly it wouldn't work for all, but i bet we could cull a giant amount of tendencies which could be really helpful or at least funny.

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Post by dougcl » Sat Oct 23, 2010 1:58 pm

dude wrote:as well as shoddy power supplies
FAIL

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Post by dude » Sat Oct 23, 2010 2:08 pm

dougcl wrote:
dude wrote:as well as shoddy power supplies
FAIL
you ever had one of these: :eurosmoke: ?

that is what i consider fail-some and completely worth mentioning.

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Post by dude » Sat Oct 23, 2010 2:13 pm

dougcl wrote:
dude wrote:as well as shoddy power supplies
FAIL
and you could add some helpful thoughts or insight or something as opposed to trolling. :roll:

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Post by whitewulfe » Sat Oct 23, 2010 2:21 pm

Wow, a lot of good solid advice from everyone so far. I'm especially liking how even if someone has a personal preference for a certain style they'll still talk open mindedly about the various options that are out in the proverbial field.

And wow, several more replies since I replied to the first three *laughs and grins*
revtor wrote:Used Euro or PAIA frack. start small, start cheap. Build skills and knowledge of what you want module-wise. You know what music you like - great. This does not translate in any real way to a module format or brand. So start small and cheap and grow from there. You will learn quickly where your patching leans sound wise and with knoledge you can then see what modules you might like.

we could all recommend anything and youll have fun with it, seriously.

look through the for sale posts and get some things used, play and learn. this is a long journey. If you want it to be: spend, done. then go for the virus or ante up and spend 2-3 g's off the bat for a full system.
Hmmm, I'll admit I've been quite curious about PAiA's offerings, especially given that for $550 USD or so one can get a mostly complete and basic starter system (the 9700S), and it would only take a few hundred more to add another 3U of utility modules (or whatever I find myself craving after acquiring the starter system). PAiA's offerings also are available in DIY, which for some strange reason I had completely forgotten about (and Frac also has the lovely, uniform "black beauty/beast" appearance thing going on). And at such a low entry cost, it wouldn't be all that hard for me to add in a sequencer or keyboard...

PAiA also has a vocoder kit for fairly cheap ^_^

As for used, I hadn't contemplated such, and will have to look at such - the only thing I've ever bought used has been car parts (back when I used to have a car, stupid engine didn't even blow a hole in the block when it blew, I was so disappointed).

I'm pretty certain a few "destroy the heavens" styled modules will eventually work their way into whatever rig I wind up purchasing, especially given how delicious the various offerings from Flight and WMD are (as well as Metasonix). Hey, one can't be melodic all the time, and after having listened to various drone and amibence songs/samples people have come up with here on the forums it's caught my curiosity..

Much as part of me would love to do the whole "buy it and be done" stylings of a Virus TI2, I'd sooner go with something that I can easily muck around with patch cables and instantly change the sound, instead of delving through various menus, and that's after having lusted after a Virus for five years now. There just seems to be something deliciously enjoyable about the whole aspect of being able to go "Hey, what does this do?!" on the fly..
decaying.sine wrote:+1 on the large penis aspect. 8_)

There are great offerings in both the big format and euro realms.

If I were to start completely over again from scratch knowing what I know now, I might consider building a wooden rack (with wood rails) and the rack would have rows for both MOTM format and euro format. The distro board issue is easily solved and you can get power-one supplies for +/- 12 and 15 VDC (same ones, just trimmed to 12 or 15) for $40-$45 bucks for 3/3.4 amps on ebay. Portability is not a huge concern for me. If it is for you, just make the whole rig smaller and use PSU's that are about 1-1.5 amps in size. You can easily mount MU modules and MOTM modules side by side if you use the wood rails.

Anyways, just throwing out an option to go in both directions.
Hmm, a wooden rack to host both formats would resolve the dilemma (provided I put some thought into the design of course). At present portability is not really that much of a concern, however I'm sure in the years to come it would be nice to have a semi-portable system, although, after having thought about it, I could always just have a "studio" setup and then a seperate travel case - but your idea actually sounds better ^_^
dude wrote:what i did was start buying the things that looked awesome to me (plus necessary utility stuff) and get involved in the forum to try to make use of other peoples experience. i find the most useful bits tend to come in unlikely places as opposed to the the obvious 'help me build my system' threads. those obvious threads can be great to see what LOTS of people do. you may find certain aspects of certain users systems are attractive. let people guide by example. look at the system pic threads. anyway, if you just find some stuff and start making sounds, your experience as opposed to intellectual bs will guide you. try to get stuff little by little and realize that each time you add to your system with even simple passive modules, you greatly augment the patching possibilities. i as well as likely many other folks would be glad to discuss more specifics over pm if ever you had any questions. if you like 1/4" jacks and don't mind bigger heavier casing/units and are possibly into the idea of sdiy and are fairly patient, then 5u may be more for you. if you like fast paced immediacy small/diverse extreme functional density and non standard design philosophy as well as shoddy power supplies, well then euro is for you. and if you want to go straight for the unicorn penis then just grab some serge and/or buchla and your spaceship will look a lot more interesting. as bwhitt stated, anybody can do just about anything with any system. your patching balls will dictate what sounds you end up with.

oh and i impatiently didn't read your whole post so if you covered half or all of what i commented on then please disregard my raving.
happy mufflating
Eh, it was a wall-o-text, that's why I provided the summary at the bottom ^_^ I have this odd tendency to ramble on and on >.> Oddly enough, I can't really see anything you mention having already been stated in my post :)

I've been watching a lot of the "help me build my modular" threads out there, and like you mention (especially in the euro subforum) there are several trends and modules that are quite popular.

Well, odds are I probably won't look at Serge or Buchla. They look gorgeous, and sound absolutely great, but if I were to drop $4k on a single item, it would probably be a standalone synth like the Voyager (to be used in addition to modulars, naturally). And, if I remember from experiences ten years ago, banana cables and I don't really get along (such might be different now though).
goiks wrote:going 3u doesn't mean that you can't diy modules normally associated with 5u. you may just have to get creative with pcb mounting, and have two different power supplies in your cabinet (or 12v and 15v cabinets). i have many 15v 3u modules, with 1/8 jacks. (dual mankato, klee sequencer, t. henry mega percussive synth, cgs master divider/slope detector).

also, the woodworking for a basic cabinet is so basic that you shouldn't have any trouble if you can use a circular saw, sandpaper, and a drill. or use an ikea rast cabinet.

and, if you're smart enough to patch a synth, you can learn what you need to know about hooking up a power supply.

mixing 1/4" and 1/8" jacks can slow patching down a bit, i prefer to have all my modules have the same size jacks.

when i started i was open to all formats that i could afford and were readily available used. that has evolved into a totally 3u, 1/8" jack setup with plenty of diy stuff.
Hmm, I didn't know that it's possible to fit 5U designed DIY items into a 3U setup. One learns something new every day. Never thought to contemplate two power supplies in one case either.

I am quite glad to hear that woodworking isn't that insanely difficult. I suppose any "fear" I have of such is that I haven't really done any of it, but come to think of it a single 4x8' sheet of plywood could be used for all sorts of things (Yes, i know 4x8 is excessive for building one or two cabinets, but I'd use half of it to build a gaming table).

That mixing of jacks is one thing that has me a touch worried. Like your experience has shown, I'd prefer to stick with just a single type of jack. If I do wind up going with a combination of 5u and 3u, I'm sure the slight disruption in workflow wouldn't be too too difficult to deal with...

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Post by CalvaryBand » Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:19 pm

You might want to check out the Nord Modular demo on Clavia's website if you haven't used a modular before. I also whole-heartedly recommend the Nord Modulars as very decent synths. Not exactly a modular replacement but super fun and may just quench your thirst (it's EXTREMELY deep).

I can't exactly give you advice on a regular modular as I'm just starting one myself. I've been putting together a 5U because of the bigger jacks and it's more nostalgic look/sound. 3U is cheaper if you get a lot of second-hand stuff. The parts are everywhere...

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Post by Cat-A-Tonic » Sat Oct 23, 2010 6:25 pm

Frac is a good middle ground between 5U and Euro.
It is functionally dense, and building Blacet kits is a great way to get started.
If you are at all interested in bananas you should check out BugBrand.
I use Frac and Euro together.
I am really glad that I started with Frac for the basic, essential modules.
Compare a Blacet EG1 to an ADSR from any other manufacturer in any format.
It is hard to beat on quality, functionality, flexibility, and price.

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Post by Rod Serling Fan Club » Sat Oct 23, 2010 8:15 pm

bwhittington wrote:5U is for boys and Euro is for girls. It really is that simple. :lol:
Thanks for clearing that up. All this time I labored under the false assumption that 5U was for the geratric croud. :hihi:

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Post by whitewulfe » Sat Oct 23, 2010 8:32 pm

Cat-A-Tonic wrote:Frac is a good middle ground between 5U and Euro.
It is functionally dense, and building Blacet kits is a great way to get started.
If you are at all interested in bananas you should check out BugBrand.
I use Frac and Euro together.
I am really glad that I started with Frac for the basic, essential modules.
Compare a Blacet EG1 to an ADSR from any other manufacturer in any format.
It is hard to beat on quality, functionality, flexibility, and price.
Hmmm, Frac was originally something I had contemplated and then set aside, but given my focus leans towards DIY more than pre-assembled (partially due to lower cost, partially due to a love of twiddling around with things and knowing how they work), as well as potential portability. I'll also admit that I was initially shy about Frac as it seems to be nowhere the same popularity level as other formats, however I should be focusing more on important things like those you mentioned (quality, functionality, flexibility, and price).

Both PAiA and Blacet have been mentioned, and given that Frac utilizes 1/8" cables such would resolve the conundrum of cable size differences (since in the future I will be wanting to add in a few eurorack modules). Frac also works for the gorgeous black panels. Since Frac uses a 3U sizing I can fit over twice as many modules into a 12U case, which would allow for a portable, single case setup...

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Post by decaying.sine » Sat Oct 23, 2010 8:42 pm

whitewulfe wrote:Hmm, a wooden rack to host both formats would resolve the dilemma (provided I put some thought into the design of course). At present portability is not really that much of a concern, however I'm sure in the years to come it would be nice to have a semi-portable system, although, after having thought about it, I could always just have a "studio" setup and then a seperate travel case - but your idea actually sounds better ^_^
One option is to make a case or buy a case (check out goiks's Case Study designs for nice wooden ones) and use vector rails and sliding nuts instead of wood strips (also consistent with Case Study racks). If you mount the vector rails you can easily choose the height for each row and the sliding nuts are cool and a nice alternative to wood rails. You wouldn't really put MU and MOTM format side by side from the "5U" world (slightly different height) but you could certainly have a row or several rows of whatever you wanted.

Vector rails come in 30 inch long version. I like this size because it is not too wide. I think it would be fun to have something like.

Top Row: MOTM format
Next Row: MOTM format
Next Row: MU format
Next Row: Eurorack
Next Row (on the slant for things like pressure points, brains, rene, synthwerks): Eurorack

You could even design a portable version of something like this.

There are really tons of options and your only limit is the time you want to invest in constructing your case.
Brian
"I must create a system or be enslaved by another mans; I will not reason and compare: my business is to create." William Blake

"Vactrols ringing, Dude." "Thank you Donny"

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Post by bwhittington » Sat Oct 23, 2010 9:13 pm

I would respectfully suggest not heeding decaying.sine's advice, at least initially. The man is a sick synthesis masochist who wears t-shirts emblazoned with unicorn penises for goodness sake. :lol: He's not to be trusted. There really isn't any reason to start messing with adaptor cables after your first $1500-2000 purchase.

While I will readily admit to having warm-fuzzies for Dotcom--despite owning a handful of other formats including a bit of exotica, it really is still my favorite--be aware that the entry system selection basically gives you a patchable Moog monosynth. This can be good or bad, depending on your wants, but to me Dotcom starts getting fun somewhere north of 20 spaces. For similar money in Euro, you could buy a Hertz Donut, Maths or VCS, Polivoks, and a couple vcas (or something like that--I'm no Euro guru) and have a very different kind of experience with your starter set. It depends on what appeals to you and where you want to go thereafter.

One of my favorite things about Dotcom that seems right up your alley is the wealth of technical data available on the website and wiki, as well as expertise on the Yahoo group, etc, about modifying the modules. There's something about the Dotcom format and price point that begs to be hacked in a way I would never contemplate with my Buchla modules, say. You can certainly adapt many pcbs to use in Euro format, and the inverse is true as well: a number of people repanel their favorite Euro modules for 5U. It really depends on what you want to do.

The nice thing about all of it is that you can take a step one way and if you don't like it, there is a *very* active market for used modules. I mean some stuff changes hands in minutes, and at least in 5U I've rarely had a sale post last longer than a day. If you buy used to begin with, you can try out stuff for the cost of shipping, or sometimes even make a few bucks on a sale.

Cheers,
Brian

PS. Only teasing you mr. d.sine!

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Sat Oct 23, 2010 9:38 pm

Welcome whitewulfe! :party:

I'm a die hard 5U so of course I think you should go 5U! :hyper:

That said, for some reason when I read the list of bands you are into my first though was you should go Euro. :hmm: That coupled with the cost factor. Sure, you can start small, but to probably get enough 5U modules and associated racks, power supplies, patchcords to do what you want you are going to spend at least $5000 IMHO.

I gotta go eat dinner but I need to comment my concern for Dude! In a thread about format choice where the OP is leaning towards 5U and Dude doesn't even mention Modcan???? :woah: I hope he isn't ill or being held captive and this is his way of letting us know to call the police! :lol: 8_)

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Post by dude » Sat Oct 23, 2010 9:50 pm

nah, i just know it doesn't seem like the right fit.

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Post by bwhittington » Sat Oct 23, 2010 10:22 pm

:zen: Not all are worthy of the White Synth! :zen:

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Post by sduck » Sat Oct 23, 2010 10:26 pm

Those of us with really large unicorn peni all use 5U. It's the law.

No. Seriously, you're not adverse to diy? That's where the real fun is. Sure, anyone can buy lots of cool modules and make some really cool music, but when you've actually built your own modules (even if it's just one or 2) the music you make is MUCH cooler.

See this mess?
Image
I built every module in it. And a bunch more. And if I can do it, anyone can, really.

So 5U is where it's at, at least in my tiny spot of the world. The next best format is +-15v banana euro. Or at least it should be.
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