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WIGGLING 'LITE' IN GUEST MODE

My (Poorness) Eurorack Diary
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Eurorack Modules Goto page 1, 2, 3 ... 24, 25, 26  Next [all]
Author My (Poorness) Eurorack Diary
poorness
I decided to make 2016 “the year I get into modular.” I thought it would be fun to keep an online diary of my first year of Eurorack. I have already purchased my case and plan to buy modules throughout 2016. I’m hoping to buy 1-2 modules per month (depending on the cost of the module) so I have a full system by EOY. Some things may change along the way, but that’s the goal… and I’m excited about it. smile

BTW, I fully realize it is still 2015, but it will be 2016 by the time I get my first actual module... thus the name of the thread. Let's do this!

EDIT: Changed thread title
poorness
My Background:

I have been a general music nerd and synth enthusiast for many years. I started off by learning bass over 20 years ago. I played bass in my first few bands. Bass led to guitar. Guitar led to keyboard. Keyboard led to drums… and so on. So at this point, I guess I’m a multi-instrumentalist. I’ve owned several keyboards/synthesizers over the years and I actually own quite a few right now. I have a group of guys I jam with fairly regularly and here is my current setup in the jam space, L to R: Roland Juno Gi, Novation Mininova, Yamaha MG 10/2 mixer, DSI Mopho, Alesis SR-18, Midiclock, and Arturia Minibrute. I think you get the idea.



So Why Modular?:

I remember the first time I saw a Synthesizers.com system about 12 years ago. I thought it reminded me more of an airplane cockpit than a musical instrument. Still... there was something undeniably awesome about all those knobs and flashing lights. I was infatuated. Since then, I’ve gone to their website a few times a year to drool over all the knobs,LEDs, and cords. Every January I’d think about making the investment in a dotcom system, but it always seemed so far out of reach. Still… to this day, that feeling has not left me. I still go to Synthesizers.com and drool periodically. Ugh.

Fast forward about 5 years or so to the day I saw my first Doepfer A-100 system. It was like a dotcom system only smaller... and silver. Again, I completely geeked out on them by spending hours on the Doepfer website, dreaming of the day I’d own that big A-100 suitcase. Not surprisingly, I still do that from time to time. Despite the modular aspect of these systems and the ability to constantly upgrade, the initial investment always scared me. I’d always get serious about it, then back off once I started adding up all the components. "Maybe next year," I'd say reluctantly.

Finally, I remember seeing the Pittsburgh Modular System 90 at NAMM 2014. That was a pivotal moment for me. I was the day I realized modular synthesis was in reach. That tiny system did pretty much everything the big A-100 and dotcom systems did... but it was only $1700 and it was tiny by comparison. My life was changed... I knew my new synth direction. So, I planned to get into Eurorack in 2015. Well, 2015 came and went and I never made the investment due to various reasons, but that’s all about to change.

Side note... I did pick up a Microbrute SE when Sweetwater had them on sale for $249. I often do “floor jams” using my Microbrute and Korg Volcas. This may be the “tipping point” that made me decide its time to take the plunge. Well, for these and many more reasons... Eurorack here I come!



My 2016 Project:

So... I decided to make 2016 the year I get into modular. I already bought a 104 HP Eurorack case and I’ll be posting pics in the coming days. I’ll probably use my Microbrute SE as the controller for now and I also plan to pick up a Korg SQ-1 in the coming weeks so I can mess with sequences. Essentially, I’m going to recreate the Pittsburgh System 90 concept, but with my own module choices. I'm not trying to set any expectations but I'm thinking: VCO (x2), LFO, S&H, Noise, Mixer/Attenuator, ADSR (x2), VCF, VCA, and probably a MIDI interface. Well, that’s the plan at this point anyway, it may change.

I’m diving in guys... wish me luck. wink
Dcramer
Welcome to Muff's, here's some very pertinent advice:

Your going to need a Red Panda or two, they're hard to come by and only eat Cilantro, so like most you may have to settle for some cats or a pillow humping dog.

Build your system slowly, taking time to learn each module and combination and this will help inform your next purchases.

Keep your ski tips high on the big day, those sharks can really jump! Don't look down! MY ASS IS BLEEDING

Avoid the temptation to just buy the latest and greatest big modules! Take it from Paris, you need VCAs and Attenuvertors and other utilities.

Check out all the videos and study this thread every day:
https://muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=151763

Good luck w00t
Pizza_Bones
Very cool idea! I am also going to be getting into modular this year as well. My background and current progress are not nearly as far along as yours, but I'm also very excited to jump in. I'll be following this thread with interest!
Synthacon
Everyone will give you different advice and tell you to buy different modules.

My advice....

Go slow. Whilst 1/2 modules a month is wise, I'd say maybe a few to start, so vco, vcf, vca and modulation, then go slowly from there. You might not need to buy for a few months until you discover what you need extra.

Don't fall in to buying complex modules if you do not understand what they do. It can be a quick way to waste money and become frustrated.
homodyne
Expect much poorness Dead Banana
guestt
Excellent decision, welcome smile

Will look forward to following your progress, it's a good idea, more folks should do this I think - ok, maybe I should do it I mean oops

My advice for what it's worth, buy what you like when you like, do get some sexy modules and as already mentioned, get some utility modules early on too! I think as a starting point 3U 104hp is perfect, enough room for a sound source or perhaps two, the second being a dual function OSC/LFO perhaps? and a few utilities and one super sexy module that takes your fancy!

Truth for me was, no matter how many videos I watched, I didn't know what I really liked and didn't like until I spent some proper time with it. Even trying it out in a shop doesn't always reveal the goods! Just buy and try,,, if you don't end up liking it you can always sell smile
calaveras
I'd advise you to set some ground rules for yourself so that you don't end up spending yourself into a corner.
I've known several enthusiastic people who jumped in head first to the tune of several grand. Only to liquidate said modular a few months later when they decided it was too much.
On the plus side modular holds value better than guitars and basses. Mr. Green

When I made the jump I decided to focus on things aside from oscs and filters. Stuff like VCAs, clock dividers and LFOs are pretty boring. But an osc into a filter by itself is super duper boring. Way more fun if you have tools in your box to shake, wiggle and staple that osc and filter.
shreeswifty
and all that stuff in the pictures you've shared.......
Sell it all NOW.
risome
I always look for multifunction modules as a rule Maths Streams Disting Peaks are good examples of this ideal Miley Cyrus
Orwell
My advice is do the opposite or reverse of what everyone does:
Buy really creative and high end cool vcos
Simple Adsr
Use max for live or expert sleepers as modulation devices lpos, ads, sequencers, random sources, renes, weird shit, Turing machines
Well that's how my brain works anyway
Computer for mod sources and seq stuff
Euro for vcos and filters and say a simple spring reverb
Oh and disregard this message just buy a complete verbos system and a complex make noise system Guinness ftw!
bradfromraleigh
Things that worked for me:
* Started with 3 modules - basically a Make Noise System 0, all bought used. I am a fan of single-brand systems and think that, generally, they can save a beginner a lot of time and frustration.
* Spent a while with just these and moved on from there. Beginners don't know what they don't know so I think that my system allowed me to have a starting point, a very good one with Make Noise, and get my feet wet instead of pondering over the quickly growing vast sea of modules on the market. Plugging in and making music versus surfing the web.
* They are all fairly complex modules so allowed me to experiment with some more sophisticated patches - I still learn new things every time I play with them

Things that I wish I had done differently:
* Bought some modules that I thought were *essential* only for them to be collecting dust now - i.e., a MIDI converter
* Bought some really cool modules just because I didn't want to wait - unfortunately my system wasn't robust enough to fully utilize the modules
* Adding to above, my understanding of how to use said cool modules wasn't fully developed and I made a lot of uninteresting sounds with my equally underdeveloped system. I kept the modules shelved them for later..
* There are many things that are done better outside of the modular interface - mixing, MIDI converting, and maybe some effects like basic reverb are a few that come to mind. In general, if something is done mostly through software, it probably doesn't *have* to live in the modular realm. Its still fun to add these, but don't get carried away.
poorness
Entry #1: The Case

The modular gods hath delivered the first load of gear. Here is a pic of said pieces complete with the illusive synth cat inspecting the goods to make sure the items are acceptable. Luckily, all components were deemed worthy. Whew! It's peanut butter jelly time!



I decided to go with the Make Noise Skiff for a case. Why? Because it was the only case I could find for less than $100 that seemed durable. I thought about making one of the cardboard cases, but I know how I like to drop/slam things. I didn’t see that working out well in the long run. Fortunately, this baby is built like a tank. It is heavy and solid! I think I made a good choice.

To power this beast, I decided to go with the 4MS Row 30 power supply. I love the modular aspect of the 4MS system. It’s easy to add more cases later without having to start over and you can daisy chain them to just use a single power brick. Its also easy to move it to a new case if you decide on a different form factor. I elected to purchase the 4MS Bus Stick in lieu of the flying bus cable. The latter choice is definitely more cost effective, but there’s just something about them that feels unfinished to me. Unfortunately, my OCD just won’t let me do that. d'oh! Here’s a quick shot of the module and bus.



Now for the moment when this pile of miscellaneous parts transforms into a functional Eurorack case. Are you pumped? headbang Here we go! I grabbed a couple of screws from the bag, moved the sliding nuts in position and secured the Row 30 module to the Skiff. Gee, that was easy. What! You mean you don't have to be a genius to figure this stuff out? (yes that *sarcasm* was intended) So far so good I guess!



Now for the power distribution board. 4MS includes three sticky pads on the bottom of the board and the instructions state it is safe to attach it directly to metal. Within a minute or two, I had it secure to the Skiff and I had assembled a functional Eurorack case. Woo hoo! I made sure to mark the case with the -12V and CV pins to eliminate confusion later. thumbs up



Finally, it was time to plug her in and see what happens. Granted I have no modules yet, but all 3 lights came on which I presume is a good sign. At this point, I can only assume I did everything correctly, but I'll know for sure when I get that first module. I officially have a Eurorack case now. Day 1 was successful. Now I have to go earn some money to buy modules. wink

Chugging Beers

EDIT: fixed broken images
poorness
Entry #2: First (unpowered) Modules

It’s New Year’s Eve and today is a big day on my modular journey. I did two important things today:

1. Installed my first unpowered modules
2. Ordered my first powered module

So, for my fist two modules I chose a Make Noise 6HP blank and a Pittsburgh Modular Multiple. I realize the blank doesn’t do anything other than fill space, but I did actually have a reason for choosing that one. Most MIDI to CV interfaces are 6HP. I don’t plan on getting one right away because I have several keyboards with Ptich/Gate outputs. However, I may want one someday. So, the blank will make it easy to slip one in later if I change my mind. For now though, I’m going to concentrate on oscillators, envelopes, VCAs, and such. The PM multiple serves and obvious purpose. Well, here is what I have so far.



Yeah... I know... its a bit underwhelming at this point, but still exiting for me. hyper Anyway, I also ordered my first powered module, an oscillator, today, so that should be arriving next week. I’ll post pics when it arrives.

HAPPY NEW YEAR WIGGLERS.

EDIT: fixed broken image
poorness
Oh, I also picked up a few patch cables. I have a feeling I'll need them later. I even ordered a few more with the oscillator. Thinking ahead... wink



EDIT: fixed broken image
dysonant
poorness wrote:
Anyway, I also ordered my first powered module, an oscillator, today, so that should be arriving next week. I’ll post pics when it arrives.


which OSC did you order?
Dcramer
I see you've already got the feline unit in place, excellent, you're going to need that. Of course in the future you'll need a case big enough for the cat to hide in side and poke it's head out hihi
When you get a chance, please check out the power sticky topic:

https://muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=15109

There's lots of issues with connecting power and even improperly made cables MY ASS IS BLEEDING
1960strat
You and I are on the same page. 2016 modular GAS here we come!


poorness wrote:
I decided to make 2016 “the year I get into modular.” I thought it would be fun to keep an online diary of my first year of Eurorack. I have already purchased my case and plan to buy modules throughout 2016. I’m hoping to buy 1-2 modules per month (depending on the cost of the module) so I have a full system by EOY. Some things may change along the way, but that’s the goal… and I’m excited about it. smile

BTW, I fully realize it is still 2015, but it will be 2016 by the time I get my first actual module... thus the name of the thread. Let's do this!
guestt
Row power looks like a real nice & neat solution!

Good work so far... thumbs up
thingstocome
I advise you to buy a ton of modules and new awesome ones when they come out even if you have no idea what they do! That's what I did and it's a lot of fun (really!!). Oh and... cats.
poorness
@dysonant: Pittsburgh Waveforms

@Dcramer: Ha ha. That thread was one of the first things I read here. Actually, that's one of the reasons's I joined the community.

@1960strat: Good luck man. Let's do this together.

@Baddcr: Thanks bro. SlayerBadger!
moremagic
poorness wrote:
Oh, I also picked up a few patch cables. I have a feeling I'll need them later. I even ordered a few more with the oscillator. Thinking ahead... wink
way to go on starting your modular (feelin jelly)
may i ask why you chose a passive mult module instead of something like an intellijel hub or two? thats the route im planning on for passive mults, and it seems to me thatd be more useful with your other cv gear. ofc take this with a grain of salt, im a noob to modular though ive been wiggling moogerfoogers and mono poly for years
poorness
moremagic wrote:
may i ask why you chose a passive mult module instead of something like an intellijel hub or two?


Dang it! Why did I think of that? I guess I'll be ordering a couple of those with my next module. Nice suggestion. See... Muffs is paying off already. wink
makrel
poorness wrote:
Oh, I also picked up a few patch cables. I have a feeling I'll need them later. I even ordered a few more with the oscillator. Thinking ahead... wink



You can get stackable patch cables too which is just another way to do unbuffered multing
Cortega
welcome...have a nice Modular Journey
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