Quick MOTM-490 VS Moog 9504-A Comparison Video

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JohnLRice

Quick MOTM-490 VS Moog 9504-A Comparison Video

Post by JohnLRice » Sat Dec 19, 2009 9:21 pm

I've been meaning to do this for a long time so rather than taking the time to do it as well as possible, I just did it relatively quickly:

[video][/video]

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SynthBaron
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Post by SynthBaron » Sat Dec 19, 2009 9:30 pm

The 9504 sounds a bit more, how to put it, "unstable".

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Post by Funky40 » Sun Dec 20, 2009 7:35 am

SynthBaron wrote:The 9504 sounds a bit more, how to put it, "unstable".
I know what you mean, but i guess i would call it more noisy/dirty, less clean(ical)
Love both, but the dirt/livingness one can patch


Thanks John !
very interesting.
Maybe i gonna get mine up this Year

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Post by doctorvague » Sun Dec 20, 2009 9:46 am

Wow, I really didn't think the difference would be so drastic. Is the Moog being powered with the same voltage it would have been originally?
Who knows what the Moog originally sounded like with new components? I don't know but I would suspect it was cleaner and at least some of what we're hearing might be aging components. I don't remember Emerson's sounding that dirty (would this be same model he used?) but I didn't hear his in isolation in a youtube demo either. :hmm:
As always thanks for posting this John.
I may have to throw Trilogy vinyl on later today. Trilogy, The Endless Enigma... :love:

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Post by SynthBaron » Sun Dec 20, 2009 9:56 am

Maybe it could be a little distortion on the input of the 9504a, the MOTM was designed for hotter signal levels.
doctorvague wrote:Wow, I really didn't think the difference would be so drastic. Is the Moog being powered with the same voltage it would have been originally?
Who knows what the Moog originally sounded like with new components? I don't know but I would suspect it was cleaner and at least some of what we're hearing might be aging components.
The 904a also has 3 different sets of capacitors. I think it's set to the "1" range most of the time in the video, while the MOTM one has one single capacitor set from the "2" setting. And I think the MOTM uses lower voltage caps. How much does either have an effect on the sound, I dunno. The top and bottom transistor pairs on the MOTM are SSM matched pairs too. There's probably an old post on TGS with Paul explaining things.

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Post by revmutt » Sun Dec 20, 2009 10:01 am

Is the Don Martin stuff exact the way Mike Bucki's stuff is?

I don't know much about the Don Martin stuff but I do know Mike, his work, history, etc.
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Post by SynthBaron » Sun Dec 20, 2009 10:07 am

revmutt wrote:Is the Don Martin stuff exact the way Mike Bucki's stuff is?

I don't know much about the Don Martin stuff but I do know Mike, his work, history, etc.
Don Martin Moogs are more of an attempt at a clone, while Mike Bucki is basically building stuff from surplus original Moog parts and guidelines.

This was Kevin Lightner's opinion about one of Martin's products:

http://www.keyboardmuseum.com/ar/m/moog/martinmini.html

The only person who I know who I think has a small system is Cary Roberts (pics at http://www.moogmodular.com/).

But Martin was another Peter Grenader, and took people's money and never delivered a lot of shit. So that leaves a bad taste in some people's mouths related to his products.

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Post by emdot_ambient » Sun Dec 20, 2009 12:23 pm

I don't know anything about the Don Martin Moog stuff, but to me this particular Moog sounded mushier and more diffuse than the MOTM, which has a crisp, tight sound. I much prefer the MOTM over this particular Moog.

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Post by ndkent » Sun Dec 20, 2009 12:55 pm

I guess Don Martin was the archetype for collecting modular orders, building a couple possibly at a loss and then not delivering the remainder.

I saw a small system at Five G in Tokyo. Apparently they placed a substantial order that was never delivered though they did get a row and a half of modules. Not priced.

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Post by JohnLRice » Sun Dec 20, 2009 1:07 pm

doctorvague wrote:Is the Moog being powered with the same voltage it would have been originally?:
I believe so, +12 and -6
doctorvague wrote: Who knows what the Moog originally sounded like with new components? I don't know but I would suspect it was cleaner and at least some of what we're hearing might be aging components. I don't remember Emerson's sounding that dirty (would this be same model he used?) but I didn't hear his in isolation in a youtube demo either. :hmm:

Keep in mind that my 9504-A is only about 15 years old so aging may not be much of a factor. Probably the munching YouTube does to the audio is a bigger factor.

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Sun Dec 20, 2009 1:11 pm

SynthBaron wrote:Maybe it could be a little distortion on the input of the 9504a, the MOTM was designed for hotter signal levels.
doctorvague wrote:Wow, I really didn't think the difference would be so drastic. Is the Moog being powered with the same voltage it would have been originally?
Who knows what the Moog originally sounded like with new components? I don't know but I would suspect it was cleaner and at least some of what we're hearing might be aging components.
The 904a also has 3 different sets of capacitors. I think it's set to the "1" range most of the time in the video, while the MOTM one has one single capacitor set from the "2" setting. And I think the MOTM uses lower voltage caps. How much does either have an effect on the sound, I dunno. The top and bottom transistor pairs on the MOTM are SSM matched pairs too. There's probably an old post on TGS with Paul explaining things.
Thanks for the info, I didn't know a lot of that! I did notice that when I first got the 9504-A up and running I though it might be broken because it sounded like crap, particularly when more wide open and using lots of regen/resonance. I then reduced the input level and it sounded better.

I have no idea if it's propertly aligned or working correctly though. And I didn't take the time to verify alignment of the MOTM-490 either.

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Sun Dec 20, 2009 1:13 pm

revmutt wrote:Is the Don Martin stuff exact the way Mike Bucki's stuff is?

I don't know much about the Don Martin stuff but I do know Mike, his work, history, etc.
From pictures I've seen, Mike's offerings look pretty much exactly like pictures of the original Moogs. Don's stuff looks more modern and substantial (screened PCB, larger components etc)

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Sun Dec 20, 2009 1:28 pm

Here is the MOTM-490 part of the 'soundtrack' in MP3 format (the WAV wouldn't upload?! :mad: )
Attachments
From YouTube video MOTM-490 VS MOOG 9504-A
MOTM-490_1_JLR.mp3
(4.5 MiB) Downloaded 21 times

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Post by JohnLRice » Sun Dec 20, 2009 1:48 pm

Here's the Moog MP3 (I keep getting the error "No post mode specified" when I try to upload the attachments! :rage: ) I'll try once more but I gotta run so if it fails I'll try again later :waah:

OK, let me try a smaller one :roll:
Attachments
From my YouTube video
MOTM-490 VS MOOG 9504-A
Moog-9504-A_1_JLR1.mp3
(5.15 MiB) Downloaded 12 times

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Post by SynthBaron » Sun Dec 20, 2009 3:25 pm

JohnLRice wrote: I have no idea if it's propertly aligned or working correctly though. And I didn't take the time to verify alignment of the MOTM-490 either.
I think the only trimmers are for 1v/oct, so even if they were off there wouldn't be much affect on the sound besides different frequency cutoffs between the two modules.

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Post by SynthBaron » Sun Dec 20, 2009 3:37 pm

Hmm, I don't see any clipping on an oscilloscope on the 9504 MP3. I do see what looks like a DC offset from the envelope, which doesn't show on the 940 one. IIRC, the close matching of transistors is what stops the DC bleed-through.

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Post by CZ Rider » Sun Dec 20, 2009 4:05 pm

Hey John,
Thanks for taking the time to do that video. I get very similar results with my 904A. I have a difficult time playing most other brand oscillators thru the Moog, without attenuation, due to the higher output. The Moog oscillators are listed as 1.3V p-p. Generally with 901 oscillators into a CP3 mixer, overdrive begins around the 8 through 10 range, depending on the waveform. With MOTM 10V p-p, or Roland oscillators into the CP3, anything past 2 on the mixer results in almost unuseable distortion. The CP3's double the voltage, and my distortion patches usually involve a positive feedback loop and further gain with a second CP3. So the 904a can handle higher voltage, but at 10V p-p, the signal may be too hot. But perfect range for the MOTM-490.
I have both the MOTM-490 and the MOTM-1490. I actually prefer the sound of the smaller 1490.
Glad to hear that 9504a running. Good job! :tu:

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Post by revmutt » Sun Dec 20, 2009 4:47 pm

JohnLRice wrote:
From pictures I've seen, Mike's offerings look pretty much exactly like pictures of the original Moogs. Don's stuff looks more modern and substantial (screened PCB, larger components etc)
Hey John. Mike's stuff with the exception of a few modules are pretty exact except his soldering is nicer then most of the boards I have from the 60's and 70's.

For the record here are some custom or mods he has added to the line up:

1. 902 VCA he has added LED's, a mini toggle and has adjusted the volume difference that occurred in the two modes.

2. 928 S&H is now 1528 is upgraded and changed but I don't have an original so I can't compare.

3. He makes a 5U version of the CP mixer section called C3PO

I would imagine there are some other detail stuff that he now does that were already being done when he headed custom engineering with the original Moog Music, Inc.
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Post by kindredlost » Mon Dec 21, 2009 10:37 am

Thanks for taking the time to post this John. An interesting comparison.

I have a hard time affording the newer modules from Moon, MOTM, STG etc., so this type of collector's items are way off my list. I'm not into collecting, although I admire vintage Moog.

I'd rather spend my money supporting the guys making it happen now. To each his own. Congrats on the nice module!

-David

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Post by sunsinger » Tue Dec 22, 2009 12:10 am

I definitely like the MOTM better. Thanks for this John, though I would never even consider paying $800.00 for a filter. Well maybe.... a Zeroscillator... if I ever pull the Bank Job I've been planning.

OK, well... maybe a Serge or Buchla, if I were using that format... but those do more than oscillate being parts of other components.

But, nice demo, nice :yay:

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Post by JohnLRice » Tue Dec 22, 2009 11:56 pm

Thanks for all the encouragement and information, guys! :tu: :hail:

I'll probably do one more comparison, this time with some long sweeps with different resonance amounts. And suggestions of what you might like to hear in a comparison are welcomed.

For the next one I'll play around with the input levels until I find the 'best' level for each different filter.

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Post by SynthBaron » Wed Dec 23, 2009 11:51 am

If it's possible, mult off the oscillator and envelope outputs to each filter and hard pan each one in a stereo audio file so we can really hear them side by side.

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Post by wyrtti » Wed Dec 23, 2009 1:57 pm

These are wonderful demos, JLR! Please continue, the long sweeps sounds like an excellent, excellent idea. (I never get tired of long filter sweeps).

:hyper:
Eschew obfuscation!

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