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Non-Traditional Oscillators in 5U
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Author Non-Traditional Oscillators in 5U
drob842
Is there anywhere I could find a list of all oscillators available in the 5U format? Specifically, digital and/or non-traditional oscillators. I already own three Q106s and two Mos Lab Kobol oscillators, so for my purposes, I'm set on that front. I also have the Free State FX Braids oscillator. I'm looking for one more oscillator and hope it will cover new ground. I'm strongly considering the upcoming 5U Orgone Accumulator, but I thought I'd see what other oscillators people can recommend. To be clear, I'm not interested in any more Moog clones, though I'd love some more Mos Lab.
JohnLRice
You can use Modular Grid to look at a list of a particular type of module:
https://www.modulargrid.net/d/modules/browser?SearchFunction=5
krisp14u
We are bringing out a TZ-VCO very soon that has a few features to do off the wall but also covers the basics



I'm very happy with it Rockin' Banana!
DomMorley
Wow - that looks amazing!

we're not worthy
duluthdack


Following JLR's link, I think this dual digi OSC is super rad and has unusual functions. Not sure of availability, Synthcube says they are out of stock.

http://synthcube.com/cart/index.php?route=product/product&path=72_63&p roduct_id=499&sort=p.price&order=DESC
Paradigm X
wow, very cool Paul! are you doing an MOTM version too?

we're not worthy
drob842
duluthdack wrote:


Following JLR's link, I think this dual digi OSC is super rad and has unusual functions. Not sure of availability, Synthcube says they are out of stock.

http://synthcube.com/cart/index.php?route=product/product&path=72_63&p roduct_id=499&sort=p.price&order=DESC


This is interesting. I'm going to search for some videos of this module. I love the basics, but there is nothing like a digital oscillator or two for some new flavors. I hope that isn't too sacrilegious in a 5U thread. Please don't exile me.
J3RK
I just got done prototyping the FlexWave VCO. Please ignore the prototype panel jack mistake. (accidentally doubled up the width and shape CV inputs d'oh! ) Anyway, it's a dual VCO with four quadrant multiplication, multiple sync modes, wave folder based partially on the Jurgen Haible "B" shaper, voltage controlled waveform crossfading with multiple waveform selections per channel, linear and exponential FM on the main oscillator (linear only on the modulation oscillator) VCO and LFO modes on both VCOs, excellent V/Oct tracking, etc. I'll be recording audio demos for this soon. It will actually be available in multiple formats. Mostly DIY, but I'll be making a handful of completed modules as well in 5U (MOTM format).

I'm also working on a Phase Distortion, wavetable, VCO, but that ones a little further out. More on that when it's ready to go.

drob842
J3RK wrote:
I just got done prototyping the FlexWave VCO. Please ignore the prototype panel jack mistake. (accidentally doubled up the width and shape CV inputs d'oh! ) Anyway, it's a dual VCO with four quadrant multiplication, multiple sync modes, wave folder based partially on the Jurgen Haible "B" shaper, voltage controlled waveform crossfading with multiple waveform selections per channel, linear and exponential FM on the main oscillator (linear only on the modulation oscillator) VCO and LFO modes on both VCOs, excellent V/Oct tracking, etc. I'll be recording audio demos for this soon. It will actually be available in multiple formats. Mostly DIY, but I'll be making a handful of completed modules as well in 5U (MOTM format).

I'm also working on a Phase Distortion, wavetable, VCO, but that ones a little further out. More on that when it's ready to go.



Hell yes. Please update MW when you move forward. I would love to hear this module, as well as the other one you're working on.
J3RK
I will definitely post some updates very soon. I made this one a little more focused, and a little less of a sandbox than the MCVCO. There are quite a few internally routed items for example. I thought it might make this one a little less confusing, and allow someone to just plug in a couple of patch cables and start playing, instead of having to patch the VCO up from scratch. It seems to work (at least in my opinion). Anyway, more soon.

w00t
Dave Peck
I have one of these MOTM e350 Morphing Terrarium wavetable oscillators re-paneled from Euro to 5U. It's awesome. The 5U version brings some PCB jumpers out to the front panel with new switches for more versatility, and adds three new modulation depth controls for the three wavetable mod inputs. There seems to be several of this particular version floating around. I recommend it.

bphenix
J3RK wrote:




Buy all the J3RK / Stroh modules you can. Especially, if he is the builder. I don't think I need more oscillators but then he comes out with another one.
sduck
I'm pretty sure there isn't a dedicated list of weirdo 5U VCOs anywhere. Your best bet is to just look at what we've thrown you in this thread, and go from there.

Here's some of the weirdos I've got. Not MU anything, but all stuff that could be put behind MU panels if you wanted them enough.

First, the most moldy oldy of the bunch. The J3rk version of the Verbos version of the Buchla 258. Has a big fat sound, and responds to cv in really quirky nonlinear ways sometimes, for maximum west coast style fun....

Buchla 258 clone front by Stephen Drake, on Flickr

Then there's the Ian Fritz Teezer through zero VCO. This is on the surface the most tame one of this bunch, very traditional sounding saws, tris, and sines; but throw the right cv at it with the right settings and it gets wild...

Ian Fritz Teezer VCO front by Stephen Drake, on Flickr

It's already been mentioned, but the Synthesis Technology e350 Morphing Terrarium is a tour de force of wavetable type beauty - this thing sounds incredible, it's hard for me to not use it in everything... (and a slightly different panel than Dave Brown's above)

MOTM e350 Morphing Terrarium front by Stephen Drake, on Flickr

And it's sister act, the e340 Cloud Generator is the king of fat sounding saw waves. This will cut through anything, in a happy way...

Motm e340 front by Stephen Drake, on Flickr

Another J3rk creation, the Dual Mirror Core VCO. This is kind of a do it yourself complex VCO - patch up whatever complex scenario you can dream up. Not for the faint of heart...

J3RK Dual Complex VCO front by Stephen Drake, on Flickr

And now for some extreme digital weirdness. First up is the PT Audio Dual Digital Oscillator. This thing has some serious depth - there's just tons of great sounding waves and modulations built into this thing. But it's a bit tricky - tweak it a little too hard and it all turns into noise. And, murdered out for some reason...

Dual Digital Oscillator front by Stephen Drake, on Flickr

If you want to hear this one -



And last but certainly not least, the infamous Orgone Accumulator. Who knows what this one sounds like. It's too busy accumulating orgone.

Neutron Sound Orgone Accumulator front by Stephen Drake, on Flickr
Vacancy Of Disco
Free state fx is also building Mutable Instruments Braids now as the Macro Digital Oscillator. Braids

It's pretty much an entire synth with in itself though. MY ASS IS BLEEDING
fac
Ian Fritz's Double Decka (SSL build shown here):
BendingBus
Speaking of wacky new oscillator types in 5U, here is my dream oscillator that I've been working out in my head recently...

* Analog, MOTM-300 sound quality and musicality.
* Produces 16 perfect sine waves (truly zero harmonics).
* Each sine wave is a note in the harmonic series. So if you set the first sine to 100hz, the following 15 waves are set to 200hz, 300hz, etc. This gives you the first four octaves of the harmonic series. Fully customizable timbres is where this is going.
* A master knob set the root frequency, and all other frequencies adjust based on this master.
* A dented knob for each harmonic sine wave (15 total) moves its position from aligned with the harmonic series, to left/right one harmonic spacing. So for the first time we can step outside of pitch physics and put harmonics where we want them. Why not have the second harmonic a perfect fifth instead of an octave?
* A knob for each sine wave (16 total) sets the amplitude. So if your song is in just-minor you can set the loud 5/4 major (the 5th and 10th harmonics) to zero, or you could increase the volume of the 7/4 minor (7th and 14th harmonics). Also, since you are setting the levels of each harmonic, you can program a roll-off of any cutoff and slope, without a HPF/LPF, and you can put a resonance anywhere you want.
* CV inputs for sine position and amplitude (31 jacks) lets you do a vibrato on the major third harmonic, or a tremolo on all perfect fifths. Nothing like this has ever been heard by mankind, to my knowledge.

Since I'm not an engineer/designer, I don't know if this idealistic design is even physically possible in analog. Maybe it would be 10U wide and $10K, only the genius Paul T Schreiber could make it, and even then only five people on the planet would buy it?? It would be possible in digital (I think), but if it's chintzy sound quality that can't be used on a record, that's not really useful except for goofing around. I know there are wave shaper modules like "turn some knobs and some wacky new timbres happen", that has its place, but that's different from specifically designed musically useful timbres.
bphenix
BendingBus wrote:
Speaking of wacky new oscillator types in 5U, here is my dream oscillator that I've been working out in my head recently...

* Analog, MOTM-300 sound quality and musicality.
* Produces 16 perfect sine waves (truly zero harmonics).
* Each sine wave is a note in the harmonic series. So if you set the first sine to 100hz, the following 15 waves are set to 200hz, 300hz, etc. This gives you the first four octaves of the harmonic series. Fully customizable timbres is where this is going.
* A master knob set the root frequency, and all other frequencies adjust based on this master.
* A dented knob for each harmonic sine wave (15 total) moves its position from aligned with the harmonic series, to left/right one harmonic spacing. So for the first time we can step outside of pitch physics and put harmonics where we want them. Why not have the second harmonic a perfect fifth instead of an octave?
* A knob for each sine wave (16 total) sets the amplitude. So if your song is in just-minor you can set the loud 5/4 major (the 5th and 10th harmonics) to zero, or you could increase the volume of the 7/4 minor (7th and 14th harmonics). Also, since you are setting the levels of each harmonic, you can program a roll-off of any cutoff and slope, without a HPF/LPF, and you can put a resonance anywhere you want.
* CV inputs for sine position and amplitude (31 jacks) lets you do a vibrato on the major third harmonic, or a tremolo on all perfect fifths. Nothing like this has ever been heard by mankind, to my knowledge.

Since I'm not an engineer/designer, I don't know if this idealistic design is even physically possible in analog. Maybe it would be 10U wide and $10K, only the genius Paul T Schreiber could make it, and even then only five people on the planet would buy it?? It would be possible in digital (I think), but if it's chintzy sound quality that can't be used on a record, that's not really useful except for goofing around. I know there are wave shaper modules like "turn some knobs and some wacky new timbres happen", that has its place, but that's different from specifically designed musically useful timbres.


This is all pretty trivial to do in the digital realm. I've done very similar stuff with my Kyma system. It doesn't sound chintzy at all.

In the analog realm, it is doable, just extremely expensive.
BendingBus
bphenix wrote:
I've done very similar stuff with my Kyma system.


Found a Vimeo demo, interesting stuff. Was surprised that I wasn't immediately offended by the sound quality, actually it sounded fairly legit.
drob842
I've been MIA for a couple weeks, but I want to say thanks to everyone who posted a response. There are some great options that I am going to further explore. Thank you!!
Tronman
I've really been enjoying using my 2 Dotcom Q167 LFO++ as audio oscillators.
cornutt
BendingBus wrote:

* Each sine wave is a note in the harmonic series. So if you set the first sine to 100hz, the following 15 waves are set to 200hz, 300hz, etc. This gives you the first four octaves of the harmonic series. Fully customizable timbres is where this is going.


Add something else to this and you've got a capability that is similar to the harmonic generators on a K5/K5000. For each harmonic, give it the ability to be routed to one of four output busses. Now you can dynamically vary the timbre by running different groups of harmonics through different VCAs with different modulations.

To keep the panel from getting ridiculously large, if you're doing this in the digital domain then you probably want some kind of display, with one switch that allows you to select a harmonic to be routed, and another that selects the routing. Another alternative that doesn't involve a display would be a 4-position slide switch for each harmonic. You probably don't want to use rotary switches because 16 rotary switches would take up a ridiculous amount of panel space.
choice_of_meat
I did not see this, so sorry if it's already been mentioned, but the
FSFX Free State FX Mutable Braids Macro Digital Oscillator
Looks pretty cool. Oops was mentioned above...
unwar
the Club of the Knobs dual morphable wavefront VCO is a weird one. it can get classic sounds...awesome fat PWM and, with subtle modulations, the wavefrot offers some nice moving textures.
the digital modifier is fun but limited until you use it as a mod source and feed it back into the VCOs, then things gets very weird. and with further cross mod action it slips into wtf territory.
cornutt
Hey sduck, did you build that J3RK Dual Mirror Core VCO yourself? How difficult a build is it? There's one kit for the MU version left on Synthcube, and I'm thinking about getting it.
sduck
It's been a while. I seem to remember the basic pcb build to be fairly easy, although there are 3 boards, so it's not easy in the time sense. The wiring was a lot of work. I suspect that the synthcube version will be well documented at least.

J3RK Dual Complex VCO back 2 by Stephen Drake, on Flickr
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