z3000 or M15?

Cwejman, Livewire, TipTop Audio, Doepfer etc... Get your euro on!

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intellijel
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z3000 or M15?

Post by intellijel » Thu Nov 26, 2009 5:05 pm

I currently have the following VCOs:
Plan B M15
Plan B Elf LFO
Cwejman VCO-2RM
Livewire AFG

A while ago I borrowed my friends z3000 and I really liked it. I got very cool sounds out of it via FM and liked the overall design. Freq display and the fact you can go into LFO mode are extra bonus.

The m15 on the otherhand has some stroing points: it sounds really warm, there are very cool FM results as well at times. However there are some aspects of it I do not like at all (like the bi-polar attenuation controls and the pwm).

Any opinions on why I should keep the M15 instead of getting a Z3000?
I do not have room for both....

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chinard
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Post by chinard » Thu Nov 26, 2009 5:15 pm

despite its flaws its still an amazing oscillator... I'm not aware of too many other VCO's that are triangle core.
Yeah the PWM is kinda odd the way it is set up. For some reason you have to patch something to it before it behaves the way one would expect. (for example, patch the sine to the pwm on the same module and the pwm starts to behave.. i dont know why.. it just does)
I actually really dig the bipolar attenuators. lets you do some really funky stuff with modulated signals.

But given the current state of plan b if it ever breaks you are screwed.

If you do end up deciding to get rid of that m-15 i'd gladly take it off your hands for ya :domodance:

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Post by A Dingleberry Monstrosity » Thu Nov 26, 2009 5:26 pm

flaws? On the M15?
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chinard
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Post by chinard » Thu Nov 26, 2009 5:30 pm

A Dingleberry Monstrosity wrote:flaws? On the M15?
sorry.. i meant to say
"undocumented features"

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Soy Sos
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Post by Soy Sos » Thu Nov 26, 2009 5:48 pm

Z3000 .... A new, supported, quality device from a reliable, interesting and well run company.

M15........????

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Post by wetterberg » Thu Nov 26, 2009 5:54 pm

Soy Sos wrote:Z3000 .... A new, supported, quality device from a reliable, interesting and well run company.

M15........????
hell yes.
I do think the m15 is worth looking into... on the used market. But buying it new? It's like a fucking blood diamond to me. Ten foot pole, etc.

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intellijel
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Post by intellijel » Thu Nov 26, 2009 6:42 pm

So maybe a better way to phrase this is:

What is special about the M15?

What is the benefit of the triangle core?
Also isn't the ELF lfo a very simmilar circuit?


I have not given the Cwejman VCO a proper trial yet but my first impressions were not that hot... I wonder if that will be the one to go in the end!

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Post by Cybananna » Thu Nov 26, 2009 6:55 pm

I really love the M15. I have 4 of them. There's just nothing i've used like them.

However, If I were going to buy new oscillators today, of your options, i'd probably consider the tiptop. (there are tons of great oscillators out there though)

I've never used one but what I heard sounded good.

I would be comfortable buying from tiptop over plan B. I do hate to say that but it's true.

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Post by A Dingleberry Monstrosity » Thu Nov 26, 2009 7:09 pm

chinard wrote:
A Dingleberry Monstrosity wrote:flaws? On the M15?
sorry.. i meant to say
"undocumented features"
what is wrong with a perfectly good working one? I had a M15 and didnt run into any problems. :despair:

*edit*

are you talking about the lack of tracking beyond x octaves?
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Post by REwire » Fri Nov 27, 2009 3:58 am

I keep trying to find another Osc to match the M15. So far the AFG, Cwejmans, Z3000, Macbeth, Asol and Asys have not measured up. I always plug them into my mixers and A/B the saws with the M15 and the M15 just has more high and low end and thickness than them (louder too).

The square on the M15 I don't like very much (neither the PWM) but find now the Bubblesound uLFO to have a nice square and the saw is so close to the M15 I had a hard time telling them apart; maybe about 95% there. Is it a triangle core? My guess is that triangle cores make great sawtooths.

I will get another uLFO to have one each as osc and one as LFO/FM Modulator and when the wrVCO comes out that may supplant the M15's with it's modulatable sawtooth.

For now, I'd say the uLFO is the best sounding VCO in Euro next to the M15. But my taste is to have oscs that are similar to what's in the vintage stuff like the Synthi, EML and Arps.

As for M15's and warranty, treat them like vintage equip, there may be no more made.

Dan

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Post by wetterberg » Fri Nov 27, 2009 8:55 am

REwire wrote:I always plug them into my mixers and A/B the saws with the M15 and the M15 just has more high and low end and thickness than them (louder too)
(My emphasis)
While these points may be 100% personally valid, they are also subject to... well, subjectivity.
A/B testing has been shunned from any sort of scientific method for many decades now (I've read dozens of accounts of "audiophiles" being pranked with faked A/B tests), and words like "thickness" and "more high and low end" - in an A/B test - are really unquantifiable.

We had the same discussion over the a-138 mixers which people felt sounded "muddy". Turns out it's just a smidgen less loud than other methods, and since our ears are susceptible to that to a massive extent we perceive it as "muddy". Testing showed otherwise.

Personal opinion is awesome, and of course people come on here to ask "what we think", but I think we should avoid wrapping up opinion as facts.
:hug: Please don't take this the wrong way, I mean nothing personal about it.

The way modules respond to external stimuli obviously vary quite a bit. And then there's the feature set, too - the morph out, the 4(!) FM inputs, etc.

About the m15; it does behave in a really attractive way when FM'd - in fact, I think I rarely do a sound on it that isn't FMd? It (well, at least rev.1, the one I have) has terrible pwm response with the most absurd DC offsets, and it drifts like a motherfucker. But that FM, man... I feel it really does make up for a lot of its bad behaviour, and "that sound" is on all my "buchlaesque" patches.

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Post by Yohda » Fri Nov 27, 2009 8:57 am

(My emphasis)
While these points may be 100% personally valid, they are also subject to... well, subjectivity.
A/B testing has been shunned from any sort of scientific method for many decades now (I've read dozens of accounts of "audiophiles" being pranked with faked A/B tests), and words like "thickness" and "more high and low end" - in an A/B test - are really unquantifiable.

We had the same discussion over the a-138 mixers which people felt sounded "muddy". Turns out it's just a smidgen less loud than other methods, and since our ears are susceptible to that to a massive extent we perceive it as "muddy". Testing showed otherwise.
You know, this is very easy to match the volume of differents modules and, for me, there is still difference in the sound. Some are warmer than other etc...

In the end, it's always subjective, but it's easy to make a good comparison.

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Post by Fnord » Fri Nov 27, 2009 9:53 am

My M15's sound a lot like silence, because they're this big empty hole in my rack where they would go if Peter ever delivered them to me. Instead, I get the sound of air and my tinnitus. The dude's a liar and a theif, and I can't see supporting him ever.
I'd say get anything but plan B.
:soapbox:

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Post by wetterberg » Fri Nov 27, 2009 10:11 am

Yohda wrote:
(My emphasis)
While these points may be 100% personally valid, they are also subject to... well, subjectivity.
A/B testing has been shunned from any sort of scientific method for many decades now (I've read dozens of accounts of "audiophiles" being pranked with faked A/B tests), and words like "thickness" and "more high and low end" - in an A/B test - are really unquantifiable.

We had the same discussion over the a-138 mixers which people felt sounded "muddy". Turns out it's just a smidgen less loud than other methods, and since our ears are susceptible to that to a massive extent we perceive it as "muddy". Testing showed otherwise.
You know, this is very easy to match the volume of differents modules and, for me, there is still difference in the sound. Some are warmer than other etc...

In the end, it's always subjective, but it's easy to make a good comparison.
If you say "in the end, it's always subjective", then the next part of the sentence completely goes against what you've just said: but it's easy to make a good comparison."
I prefaces my comment by saying that:
"While these points may be 100% personally valid"--- that's all it is. What I objected to is the idea that a subjective truth can be applied collectively. That's the wrong way to go about it.

Re: "comparisons": like I said, even a/b testing things that are the same volume still yields incredibly unreliable results.

If you *want* to properly test things, shoot them into a sonograph generator, spectrum analyzer or similar.

Compare the actual frequency, not your feelings about the frequencies.

"Warm" isn't a valid parameter for sound in my end. "warm" means a whole multitude of things, it usually means "slight vintagey high end roll off", so "slightly musically attractive muffled sound" then yes. But then I'd say that the saw out of the m15 isn't warm... *at all*.

"Good comparisons" aren't personal A/B listening tests, in my book. I'll leave it there, I think.

:guinness: :hug:

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Post by Yohda » Fri Nov 27, 2009 10:19 am

"warm" usually means "high end roll off"
It's only your interpretation, not mine! It's not scientific. I have module that sound warmer than other for me without hi end roll off.
If you *want* to properly test things, shoot them into a sonograph generator, spectrum analyzer or similar. "Warm" isn't a valid parameter for sound... "warm" usually means "high end roll off", so "slightly musically attractive muffled sound" then yes.
You can do both (that's what I do) but In the end only your ear matter.

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Post by wetterberg » Fri Nov 27, 2009 10:26 am

Yohda wrote:
"warm" usually means "high end roll off"
It's only your interpretation, not mine! It's not scientific. I have module that sound warmer than other for me without hi end roll off.
that's exactly my point. "for me". My objection wasn't to the subjective experience, it's the little leap it does into an assertion of objectivity that I am wary of.
Yohda wrote:
If you *want* to properly test things, shoot them into a sonograph generator, spectrum analyzer or similar. "Warm" isn't a valid parameter for sound... "warm" usually means "high end roll off", so "slightly musically attractive muffled sound" then yes.
You can do both (that's what I do) but In the end only your ear matter.
exactly. I wholeheartedly agree. Which is why I objected to statements like "M15 just has more high and low end and thickness". I would love to be proven wrong, of course, but as a baseline I'd need qualifying, such as: "to my ears the M15 just has more high and low end and thickness" - at the very least. :soapbox:

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Post by Yohda » Fri Nov 27, 2009 10:30 am

Ok, I agree with you! :chug:

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Post by intellijel » Fri Nov 27, 2009 4:34 pm

hmmm now you guys have me wondering about keeping my m15 but selling the AFG and replacing it with a tiptop Z3000 and uLFO (those two take up the same amount of space as the AFG).
Last edited by intellijel on Fri Nov 27, 2009 6:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by wetterberg » Fri Nov 27, 2009 6:07 pm

intellijel wrote:replacing it with a Bubblesound and uLFO (those two take up the same amount of space as the AFG).
:hmm: Do you mean the Bubblesound VCO?

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Post by Fnord » Fri Nov 27, 2009 6:11 pm

I got to check one out last weekend at the wiggler get together, the bubblesound uLFO is a module that certainly lives up to it's reputation on here. Pretty awesome if you ask me. (and even if you didn't ask me, I just told you anyway).

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Post by intellijel » Fri Nov 27, 2009 6:42 pm

wetterberg wrote:
intellijel wrote:replacing it with a Bubblesound and uLFO (those two take up the same amount of space as the AFG).
:hmm: Do you mean the Bubblesound VCO?

oops meant z3000 and uLFO!

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Post by wetterberg » Fri Nov 27, 2009 6:47 pm

well that certainly sounds like a great set :)

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Post by Soy Sos » Fri Nov 27, 2009 6:56 pm

intellijel wrote:
wetterberg wrote:
intellijel wrote:replacing it with a Bubblesound and uLFO (those two take up the same amount of space as the AFG).
:hmm: Do you mean the Bubblesound VCO?

oops meant z3000 and uLFO!
Z3000 and uLFO will be my combo by the 2nd of December. I think it's going to be a killer!

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Post by D/A A/D » Fri Nov 27, 2009 8:25 pm

I yearn for the day to rid myself of my last 3 plan B mods... So I need a full featured tri-core VCO, a 4hp lfo/vco, and a 4hp dual attenuator/voltage source...

:despair:

...

..

.

:cry:

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Post by blungo2 » Fri Nov 27, 2009 10:53 pm

Maybe i don't get it, but while the M15 was a nice oscillator (didn't i get mine from you intlligel?) i wasn't overwhelmed by it's magical qualities. I much prefer the hertz donut. I'm seriously considering also selling off my AFG (a truly versatile oscillator) to buy another HD and then a piston honda. Warmth, schmarmth.

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