In over my head?

Moog, Synthesizers.com, MOTM, Modcan, Moon and others..... Go big!

Moderators: luketeaford, Joe., lisa, Kent

Post Reply
User avatar
r05c03
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 923
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2009 12:30 pm

In over my head?

Post by r05c03 » Tue Feb 02, 2010 6:19 pm

Okay, so I bought a Dotcom Travel case and about several modules from a fellow wiggler. I am reading the manuals, and there is all this stuff about calibration. Not to sound like a complete ignoramus, I mean, I tune my synths and all, but I am a little taken aback by the calibration requirements, trim pots and all that. I mean to adjust the trim pots, you have to take the modules out of the case yes? I do not have a voltmeter, a frequency reader, or a volt standard for supplying standard volts, and though I love learning about new things, I am mostly interested in making music, not fiddling and micromanaging modules. How much of the modular thing, is messing with the gear to make it function correctly? I would be fully willing to admit that 5U modular is not my thing if it is more than 15% calibration and detail work. Thoughts? Statement? Flames?
Gear List: Elektron Octatrack, Elektron A4,Microbrute, Bass Station, Rings Braids, Pitts Ring Mod, Pitts Osc, Echophon, Intillegel uFold / uMIDI, PNW2, Doepfer 138-c, 119, Tiptop Z4000, Maleko Fade / 8NU8R

User avatar
SynthBaron
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3379
Joined: Tue Jan 27, 2009 2:43 am

Post by SynthBaron » Tue Feb 02, 2010 6:21 pm

You shouldn't have to calibrate anything for at least a decade.

User avatar
bwhittington
Terrifying Brain Secret
Posts: 5797
Joined: Thu May 21, 2009 11:48 pm

Post by bwhittington » Tue Feb 02, 2010 6:24 pm

. . . and even then you can hire a tech or send it to Roger to do it for you. No biggie.

Cheers,
Brian

User avatar
NV
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2555
Joined: Tue Jul 08, 2008 7:40 pm

Post by NV » Tue Feb 02, 2010 7:51 pm

The only thing you really need to adjust somewhat regularly that requires taking modules out of the case is the tracking on VCOs, which varies according to the particular VCO and usually holds fairly well. It generally takes a fair amount of time and temperature changes to screw with the tracking enough to affect it to such a degree as to be unusable in a tuned application, particularly since you can accomodate for subtle variations in tracking through the front panel tuning controls and adjusting your sequences and CV sources to fit. Some people complain about VCOs tracking accurately over 5 octaves or whatever for only a short time, but realistically how often do you need an accurately tracking monophonic sequence that spans five octaves? Probably as often as you would need to tune the tracking anyways.

Other adjustments may be needed after years of use, but in the same vein as any quality instrument would need in order to perform at its best. A guitar for example may need bridge and neck adjustments, refretting, new tuning lugs, even correcting a slightly warped neck. The amount of effort and equipment placed into doing this is akin to the equipment you would need to service a well-cared-for modular, and much of synth maintenance doesn't require much more knowledge than basic soldering which is a quick and handy skill to learn. Plus you could always ship it off to a tech if things really start to degrade, but with the technology and quality that modulars are being built with these days (well, most anyways...) it's realistically something you will need to worry about less than compared to a guitar, piano, or any other instrument.

User avatar
r05c03
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 923
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2009 12:30 pm

Post by r05c03 » Tue Feb 02, 2010 7:59 pm

Thanks you. It sucks to expose your ignorance...

Well soldering I got down, fairly well. Yeah it is up and running. It tracks very well via midi out from Voyager, but not so well with pitch CV out from the same. I like the pitch CV out because I seem to be able to reach lower frequencies on the 32' and 16' than with the MIDI....Going to have to look into getting that set up correctly...

The problem is that I read manuals before I really start messing with thing. When I see the manual is talking about stuff I do not know about...well, I was thought I was in over my head and that you guys were keeping the calibrating thing under wraps to nail suckers like me...
Gear List: Elektron Octatrack, Elektron A4,Microbrute, Bass Station, Rings Braids, Pitts Ring Mod, Pitts Osc, Echophon, Intillegel uFold / uMIDI, PNW2, Doepfer 138-c, 119, Tiptop Z4000, Maleko Fade / 8NU8R

User avatar
bwhittington
Terrifying Brain Secret
Posts: 5797
Joined: Thu May 21, 2009 11:48 pm

Post by bwhittington » Tue Feb 02, 2010 8:12 pm

r05c03 wrote:Thanks you. It sucks to expose your ignorance...

[snip]

The problem is that I read manuals before I really start messing with thing. When I see the manual is talking about stuff I do not know about...well, I was thought I was in over my head and that you guys were keeping the calibrating thing under wraps to nail suckers like me...
I don't think it was a dumb question at all. This feedback would probably be valuable to Roger, if you think to send him a note. The Dotcom data sheets are an awesome technical resource, but it sounds like an estimate of the (in)frequency of needed calibration would be a useful edit, so as to not scare people off.

Cheers,
Brian

drewtoothpaste
.
Posts: 2101
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2008 10:36 am
Location: Columbus, OH

Post by drewtoothpaste » Tue Feb 02, 2010 10:17 pm

I bought my first synth.com modules in 2004 & I haven't adjusted any trim pots on any of them, and the filters/oscillators still track as well as they did when I got 'em! Don't worry about having to calibrate anything.

User avatar
russma
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1403
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2008 7:50 pm
Location: Duvall, WA, USA

Post by russma » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:12 am

drewtoothpaste wrote:.... Don't worry about having to calibrate anything....
Really?

Guess I'll have to put my 'scope back in the closet. :waah:

Image

User avatar
megaohm
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1897
Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2009 6:11 am
Location: Chicago, IL

Post by megaohm » Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:26 am

idiotboy wrote:
drewtoothpaste wrote:.... Don't worry about having to calibrate anything....
Really?

Guess I'll have to put my 'scope back in the closet. :waah:

Image

Wow!!!
That thing is cool.
Where did it come from?

p.

User avatar
SynthBaron
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3379
Joined: Tue Jan 27, 2009 2:43 am

Post by SynthBaron » Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:32 am

I wonder how much X-radiation is coming off that little homebrew scope.

User avatar
r05c03
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 923
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2009 12:30 pm

Post by r05c03 » Wed Feb 03, 2010 8:55 am

Yes, I am not longer afraid...
Gear List: Elektron Octatrack, Elektron A4,Microbrute, Bass Station, Rings Braids, Pitts Ring Mod, Pitts Osc, Echophon, Intillegel uFold / uMIDI, PNW2, Doepfer 138-c, 119, Tiptop Z4000, Maleko Fade / 8NU8R

User avatar
Ranxerox
All the gear, no idea
Posts: 2163
Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 5:16 pm
Location: UK

Post by Ranxerox » Wed Feb 03, 2010 9:15 am

r05c03 wrote:It tracks very well via midi out from Voyager, but not so well with pitch CV out from the same. I like the pitch CV out because I seem to be able to reach lower frequencies on the 32' and 16' than with the MIDI....Going to have to look into getting that set up correctly...
I vaguely remember some mention of the CV output voltage from the Voyager being a bit weak... If it tracks fine via a MIDI-CV converter (as a standard reference) I would assume that the Voyager is the source of this issue and not the modules.

User avatar
r05c03
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 923
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2009 12:30 pm

Post by r05c03 » Wed Feb 03, 2010 9:25 am

Yeah I definitely was not getting the proper note to note tracking, seemed, well, kinda flat from note to note. I do have a MP-201 unit which converts MIDI to CV and have used that with the Voyager, not that, in anyway do I have to do stuff with CV, but it is nice to have the option at hand.

Ranxerox wrote:
r05c03 wrote:It tracks very well via midi out from Voyager, but not so well with pitch CV out from the same. I like the pitch CV out because I seem to be able to reach lower frequencies on the 32' and 16' than with the MIDI....Going to have to look into getting that set up correctly...
I vaguely remember some mention of the CV output voltage from the Voyager being a bit weak... If it tracks fine via a MIDI-CV converter (as a standard reference) I would assume that the Voyager is the source of this issue and not the modules.
Gear List: Elektron Octatrack, Elektron A4,Microbrute, Bass Station, Rings Braids, Pitts Ring Mod, Pitts Osc, Echophon, Intillegel uFold / uMIDI, PNW2, Doepfer 138-c, 119, Tiptop Z4000, Maleko Fade / 8NU8R

User avatar
SynthBaron
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3379
Joined: Tue Jan 27, 2009 2:43 am

Post by SynthBaron » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:59 pm

The Voyager tracks at less than 1v/oct. I thought this was supposed to be compensated for in the external interface boxes, but I guess not.

richard_k
Common Wiggler
Posts: 97
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2009 8:13 pm
Location: Mesa, AZ

Post by richard_k » Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:04 pm

idiotboy: Very cool! Make some more! :yay:
There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life--music and cats. --Albert Schweitzer.

User avatar
Peake
I'm in ur DIY. Filling cases with Buchla
Posts: 7081
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 10:00 pm
Location: Loss Angeles

Post by Peake » Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:46 pm

r05c03 wrote:Thanks you. It sucks to expose your ignorance.....
That's how we learn in a forum-oriented community. No worries.
This is not the place I'd imagined it to be.

User avatar
haricots
Droppin' Loads
Posts: 1501
Joined: Fri Jun 06, 2008 2:32 pm
Location: Chelsea & Cowansville, QC, Canada

Post by haricots » Sun Feb 07, 2010 9:56 pm

idiotboy wrote:
drewtoothpaste wrote:.... Don't worry about having to calibrate anything....
Really?

Guess I'll have to put my 'scope back in the closet. :waah:

Image
Is this of your making? :hail:

User avatar
russma
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1403
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2008 7:50 pm
Location: Duvall, WA, USA

Post by russma » Mon Feb 08, 2010 4:02 pm

Alas, no.

The only DIY I am expert with is Google Images.

:deadbanana:

However, behold.

Post Reply

Return to “5U Format Modules”