NEW Passive Optically-Controlled Attenuator VAC1 from FSS

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NEW Passive Optically-Controlled Attenuator VAC1 from FSS

Post by futuresoundsystems » Wed Nov 04, 2015 11:19 am

Hello!

Available today is the new Passive Optically-Controlled Attenuator VAC1 module from Future Sound Systems. It has been designed to give a set of vactrol-based gates in a compact-but-usable module. Its four gates can be set to act as low-pass-gates, or normal optically-controlled attenuators (for a "VCA" type action) via jumpers on the rear of the module. CV is normalled in a downwards fashion, so that control signals input to the top gate can effect the gate at the bottom. This is also true of the audio, but with a gate's output normalled to the next gate's input. This allows for steeper filtering slopes and sharper control. It is recommended, however, that only two gates are used per chain as external buffers may struggle with high impedance inputs. To summarise, the features of the P.O.C.A. VAC1 are:

-Quad optically-controlled attenuator module
-Jumpable LPG or VCA modes
-Normalling provides easy control and signal patching
-2mm thick fibreglass panel
-Sturdy but compact design and construction
-Hand assembled and tested by Finlay Shakespeare at FSS HQ in Bristol
-6HP wide with 32mm worth of electronics behind the front panel
-0mA draw - it's completely passive (...for now...)
-Price of £70 + shipping

And it looks like this:

Image
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Post by robbert » Wed Nov 04, 2015 4:28 pm

Very nice indeed

Is there enough space behind the panel, too, to put on some switches to switch between lpg and vca?

And what's tgat passive "for now"...?

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Post by futuresoundsystems » Thu Nov 05, 2015 4:08 am

robbert wrote:Very nice indeed

Is there enough space behind the panel, too, to put on some switches to switch between lpg and vca?

And what's tgat passive "for now"...?
There isn't enough space on the P.O.C.A.'s panel itself to fit switches, but the jumpers are on 2.54mm-pitch 3-pin sockets, so it's easy enough to add your own with a DIY expander module.

BUT

The "for now" refers to an expander module that will arrive in 2016, which will tap into the current vactrol configuration and add an active stage. This expander module will also feature switches for switching between LPG and VCA modes, as well as a few other tricks :tu:
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Post by robbert » Thu Nov 05, 2015 4:12 am

Ahhh, great. I love tricks :hihi:

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Post by ben_hex » Thu Nov 05, 2015 6:29 am

futuresoundsystems turning tricks! I'm into that.
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Post by windspirit » Thu Nov 05, 2015 6:53 am

Looks like an awesome module :D Image

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Post by futuresoundsystems » Thu Nov 05, 2015 7:24 am

ben_hex wrote:futuresoundsystems turning tricks! I'm into that.
:woah: :help:
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Post by futuresoundsystems » Sat Nov 07, 2015 5:31 am

Here's a demo video going through a brief outline of the POCA's features:

[video][/video]
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Post by chapelier fou » Sat Nov 07, 2015 7:42 am

Looks neat and handy.

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Post by futuresoundsystems » Wed Nov 11, 2015 8:09 am

Just put up some demos of four example P.O.C.A. gates up on SoundCloud. Check them out below:

[soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/playlists/164349987" params="auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true" width="100%" height="450" iframe="true" /]
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Post by futuresoundsystems » Mon Dec 14, 2015 9:18 am

These are back in stock over at FSS and will also be at Matttech Modular in the next few days. :banana:
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Post by erstlaub » Mon Dec 14, 2015 9:30 am

Funny, I was just looking at these earlier and was going to ask if there was a re-up due.

Does the £7 cover postage to Germany too? Doesn't seem to be option to change it on the paypal page it goes to.

Taa.

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Post by erstlaub » Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:25 am

Any first batch owners have any feedback on this one? Looks like exactly what I could do with right now but curious about any bleed/signal loss etc.

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Post by sloth713 » Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:47 am

this is very cool, but I would love a model where each of the 4 vactrols has a different response ((If it were up to me I would organize it by shortest "ring" on top and longest "ring" on bottom), though I know vactrol responses have to much variance to have any true sense of manufacturing unity over this). PS sorry to be"that guy"

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Post by futuresoundsystems » Tue Dec 15, 2015 7:33 am

erstlaub wrote:Funny, I was just looking at these earlier and was going to ask if there was a re-up due.
Does the £7 cover postage to Germany too? Doesn't seem to be option to change it on the paypal page it goes to.
Taa.
I think we've just received your order, but yes, that postage cost is worldwide - typically Special Delivery here in the UK then Airmail elsewhere :party:
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Post by futuresoundsystems » Tue Dec 15, 2015 7:38 am

sloth713 wrote:this is very cool, but I would love a model where each of the 4 vactrols has a different response ((If it were up to me I would organize it by shortest "ring" on top and longest "ring" on bottom), though I know vactrol responses have to much variance to have any true sense of manufacturing unity over this). PS sorry to be"that guy"
We were originally going to make the vactrols socketed so they could be changed from the back (module would ship with 4 vactrols, you fit them yourself, etc.) but we decided against it for durability's sake. Shoot us a PM if you'd like a socketed build though, it's totally doable.
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Post by erstlaub » Wed Dec 23, 2015 8:20 am

Nice. Arrived about an hour ago. First impressions are superb. Lovely sound on the LPG mode, solid build, great price, no obvious bleed or weakness of signal so far. I haven;t kicked the arse out of it but I'm unlikely to ever really do so so...

:tu:

Pings nicely with Maths, the Beatstep Pro, NanoRand and Batumi too.

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Post by erstlaub » Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:46 am

A week or so into using this module and absolutely loving it, lovely sound and great features for the price. It's a bit of a no brainer, highly recommend, particularly in the LPG mode.

:tu:

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Post by gridrunner » Thu Dec 31, 2015 8:43 am

Looks great! As a VCA, how much voltage opens it up all the way?

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Post by erstlaub » Thu Dec 31, 2015 8:54 am

I'm not entirely sure about VCA mode, LPG I'd say feels like it it is fully open at around 3v maybe?

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Post by EATyourGUITAR » Sat Oct 05, 2019 9:16 pm

does the VCA mode have the CV control reversed? it says attenuator but it also says VCA. not sure if 5v makes it get louder or softer? does this module have protection from negative voltages and over voltage to the CV inputs?
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