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Tangible Waves AE Modular - new entry-level system
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Modular Synth General Discussion Goto page 1, 2  Next [all]
Author Tangible Waves AE Modular - new entry-level system
bricnic


Interesting entry-level take on modular that uses breadboard jumpers like the Moog Werkstatt. I dig the rubber-stamped faceplates. Just launched on Kickstarter:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/562102529/ae-modular-a-modular-sy nthesizer-for-everyone?ref=ndy

Full Disclosure: I work at Kickstarter, which is how I came across this, but have no personal connection to project. Just thought it was cool and would be of interest here.

-Nick
bobbylandry
I'm just watching the videos for this now and looks like my kind of thing. Assuming all the technical stuff is sound I hope they're able to get funding.
xclark
Looks interesting! Reasonably priced too!
soundinett
Looks elegant, sounds good. Pricing is very competitive.
Maybe I´ll jump on the bandwagon.
thetechnobear
its just hit funding target (4days!) Rockin' Banana!

I can imagine this being alot of fun, and its the same voltage levels as things like the NS1 Nanosynth, Bastl Kastl, Minisizer ... and micro controllers like arduino/PI/Bela... so lots of possibilities to experiment, without worrying your going to blow up an expensive bit of kit.
perhaps this could start/continue a trend for a micro (budget) modular format?

edit: oh, and now all backers are getting a free 1v/oct oscillator added to their racks hyper
Happiness Forever
oh, this looks like fun.
I really like the Rubber-stamped Graphix.
Huba-Swift
That's really unique. There's now finally a super cheap entry-way into modular. I think the option of paying a bit extra for some 1/8th jacks could be a good idea for those looking at getting into euro and to fill up all that free space on the panel, but I don't suppose it would be hard at all to add the jacks yourself.
euromorcego
Huba-Swift wrote:
That's really unique. There's now finally a super cheap entry-way into modular. I think the option of paying a bit extra for some 1/8th jacks could be a good idea for those looking at getting into euro and to fill up all that free space on the panel, but I don't suppose it would be hard at all to add the jacks yourself.

yes, it should be easy to go for an adapter like this one: http://www.sound-machines.it/product/ns1nanobridge/ or the one used for the moog werkstatt. Also in form of a "module".

This thing is certainly unique and interesting. But I am not so sure about "super cheap". Close to 400eur is not nothing, there are some modular experimental boards that are similar or even cheaper (like the NS1nanosynth. Of course, you can't add further modules there, but the system here is also not compatible mechanically with eurorack, so my guess is most people will stick to the original set of modules).
Huba-Swift
euromorcego wrote:
Huba-Swift wrote:
That's really unique. There's now finally a super cheap entry-way into modular. I think the option of paying a bit extra for some 1/8th jacks could be a good idea for those looking at getting into euro and to fill up all that free space on the panel, but I don't suppose it would be hard at all to add the jacks yourself.
This thing is certainly unique and interesting. But I am not so sure about "super cheap". Close to 400eur is not nothing, there are some modular experimental boards that are similar or even cheaper (like the NS1nanosynth. Of course, you can't add further modules there, but the system here is also not compatible mechanically with eurorack, so my guess is most people will stick to the original set of modules).
Take a look at the 2-row rack, 17 modules with an average cost of 30 euro per module, not even including the case and power supply, if that's not super cheap then I can't imagine what would be. I still think that people will still flock to other eurorack compatible beginner systems though, just because of their compatibility. It sounds like that if this is a success that he will be building a lot more modules. Dare I say that this could be the dawn of a new budget format?
eole
great time to start modular... thumbs up
Jarno
Did anyone here get theirs? First impressions?
thetechnobear
Mines here, forgot about this thread posted a new one here

That thread has a couple of videos I've made.

Overall , I'm enjoying it a lot and it's got a great sound
flx


Received my fully loaded AE Modular today applause It really does sound good and I like the module layout with the sockets at the top, away from the pots. The 16-step sequencer is also cool and unusual: you set up six voltages and then assign a voltage to each step, which is very live friendly.

Unboxing:
https://www.instagram.com/p/BkPwT7Ag8dr/?taken-by=tuesdaynightmachines

The synth in action (with mobile phone audio though):
https://www.instagram.com/p/BkQH89EA60c/?taken-by=tuesdaynightmachines
Nagasaki45
I don't get it. What does hold the panels and the PCBs together? In eurorack it's the nuts of the jacks and pots.
flx
Nagasaki45 wrote:
I don't get it. What does hold the panels and the PCBs together? In eurorack it's the nuts of the jacks and pots.

The black screws at the top and bottom of each module. There are spacers under the panel then and you screw the modules to the case from the back side There are no rails like with Eurorack.

EDIT:
Here are two pictures of blank panels where you can see how it works:
http://tangiblewaves.weebly.com/store/p31/Blank_module_1U.html

Regular modules have their PCB between two smaller spacers then.
Nagasaki45
flx wrote:
Nagasaki45 wrote:
I don't get it. What does hold the panels and the PCBs together? In eurorack it's the nuts of the jacks and pots.

The black screws at the top and bottom of each module. There are spacers under the panel then and you screw the modules to the case from the back side There are no rails like with Eurorack.

EDIT:
Here are two pictures of blank panels where you can see how it works:
http://tangiblewaves.weebly.com/store/p31/Blank_module_1U.html

Regular modules have their PCB between two smaller spacers then.


Cool! Thanks for the clarification.
TheDegenerateElite
I forgot all about this system after the KS ended. I really like the looks and style.

How's he case construction?

The modules faces are MDF right?


It looks like it's actually cheaper now too.
flx
TheDegenerateElite wrote:

How's he case construction?

The modules faces are MDF right?

Yes, the faces are MDF or some other kind of wood-based thing. They're pretty solid, but of course if you press hard on them they do bend a bit.

The case is the same material I think, apart from the side panels, which are acrylic glass. Also pretty solid.

I really have nothing to complain about so far, especially at this price point. The modules are full featured, the sound is good too and the potentiometers actually feel better than some of the similar ones on Eurorack modules.
Grizaptimus
I quite like how all the I/O is up at the top of the modules.
flx
Grizaptimus wrote:
I quite like how all the I/O is up at the top of the modules.

Totally! The patch cables aren't as tight as those Eurorack minijacks obviously, so it's nice that the module controls are out of the way. I think in general there are some smart things in the AE Modular, like the MIDI-CV bus and the duplicate outputs and multiples on spare sockets.
TheDegenerateElite
flx wrote:
TheDegenerateElite wrote:

How's he case construction?

The modules faces are MDF right?

Yes, the faces are MDF or some other kind of wood-based thing. They're pretty solid, but of course if you press hard on them they do bend a bit.

The case is the same material I think, apart from the side panels, which are acrylic glass. Also pretty solid.

I really have nothing to complain about so far, especially at this price point. The modules are full featured, the sound is good too and the potentiometers actually feel better than some of the similar ones on Eurorack modules.


Cool. Thanks for the info. I couldn't find anything about the panel materiel on the website, but did see the case construction info.

That sort of 3mm (or whatever thickness) MDF is very strong generally. It has really overtaken building and terrain construction kits for wargaming in the last few years.

Should be plenty sturdy for a synth case and panels.


That 16 step sequencer is pretty cool looking and I like the preset voltage idea it uses.
flx
Regarding Eurorack compatibility, because that has been discussed earlier in this thread:

The system actually is usable with Eurorack. The Master I/O module (the MIDI, Minijack and Power Distribution module) can even be powered by a Eurorack system's 12V bus via a typical ribbon cable and there is an adapter frame to mount AE modules inside a Eurorack case too:

http://tangiblewaves.weebly.com/sunrise.html


As long as you use the AE Modular's minijack I/O sockets you can now freely patch stuff. They are protected and you can switch them between AC and DC coupling too:

http://tangiblewaves.weebly.com/store/p46/4I%2FO.html
http://tangiblewaves.weebly.com/store/p4/MASTER.html

The only difference is the voltage range now. AE uses 0-5V, so you might have to attenuate and maybe offset incoming CV from the Eurorack, so that anything below 0V and above 5V isn’t clipped. Going to the Eurorack, you might need to amplify audio. AE's tiggers are 5V, which is usually enough to fire Eurorack envelopes, etc.

So all you need is a Eurorack attenuator+offset module or two, like the Circuit Abbey Invy, which you should have in your rack anyway.

In the end though, I do see the AE Modular as its own selfcontained thing, like the Tinysizer or the Serge with its Banana cables.
flx
Filmed two short videos:

AE Modular Synth Format Introduction:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=701ArDtoWFE&index=1&list=PLa9Em_H8Xs_a 2PhTBp4A-Geqcr78uJyTO


AE Modular Synth Sound Demo:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kb1uYZwkH4s&index=2&list=PLa9Em_H8Xs_a 2PhTBp4A-Geqcr78uJyTO
Reality Checkpoint
Great videos! we're not worthy

Informative and concise. You should get a commission on sales!
thetechnobear
fantastic videos... hope we see more of AEM on TTNM.

Hopefully this will help more discover Robert/Tangible Waves, during KS i was emailing Robert regularly with ideas and questions, and is so enthusiastic, and it was a pleasure meeting him at Superbooth this year - and again feel genuinely excited and happy is about doing what his doing with AEM.

I got this last year, as an intro into modular, and have really enjoyed it, and only recently added a Eurorack case... and have been pleasantly surprised how they can nicely integrate...

as Felix i think said elsewhere, and perhaps because I had my AEM first.
I tend to use AEM quite 'standalone', so with separate voices, and perhaps have a few CV going between (clock/modulation) to help glue the two together.
(oh and audio for fx, though Robert has a multi fx planned soon!)


also, a bit after AEM, I also got a Folktek Mescaline (now in Eurorack case), and as that is also 0..5v, that acts as an interesting bridge between the AEM and Eurorack world.

anyway, lots of fun... for great prices... and Robert was showing some really fun new modules about to be released
(e.g. AlgoDrone was great, and quite unique)
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