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Control Forge or Voltage MultiStage?
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Eurorack Modules Goto page 1, 2, 3  Next [all]
Author Control Forge or Voltage MultiStage?
FatRocky
Hi all
I´d like to know your thoughts about Rossum Control Forge plus Satellites or Verbos Voltage Multistage (two of them plus Sequence Selector)?

One must be the ultra flexible and the other the more playable option.

Any advice about one against the other?^
Worwell
IMHO, Control Forge + Satellites are more flexible, more powerful and more playable. Plus less money, less buggy and less hp.
mdoudoroff
Worwell wrote:
IMHO, Control Forge + Satellites are more flexible, more powerful and more playable. Plus less money, less buggy and less hp.


“more playable” surprised me, but I have no experience with the Verbos Multistage. Care to elaborate a little?
Worwell
mdoudoroff wrote:
Worwell wrote:
IMHO, Control Forge + Satellites are more flexible, more powerful and more playable. Plus less money, less buggy and less hp.


“more playable” surprised me, but I have no experience with the Verbos Multistage. Care to elaborate a little?


Just that there are so many things that can manually be played if desired:

- Segment buttons to jump to any stage
- 2 triggers
- preset up, down and reset buttons
- time scale knob
- CV3 and CV 4 knobs that can be programmed to do many things. A good example of this is in the factory presets where one of the CV knobs controls (quantized) pitch or direction of the sequenced. Could also be used to control which preset is jumped to, whether the sequence stops, etc.

It can take a little programming to set up the playability but once saved as a preset, the possibilities are endless.

That is not to say that the VMS isn't a great module. I really liked it when I had it. The pluses to the VMS for me would be the glide switches which are very cool and the ability to quickly adjust levels on the fly. (But even there, if you are using it for pitch CV, the wide voltage range makes it difficult to dial in.)

I like the VMS. It just seems like the CF is the next level, modern version of the concept.
mdoudoroff
Thanks. Seems like a reasonable assessment. I admit I’ve done nothing much, yet, with the PLAY mode on the CF. I’ll have to remedy that soon.
Worwell
One other plus worth mentioning for the VMS is that you get two separate lines of CV, CVA and CVB. Whereas the CF has just one (with an inverse output).
MarcelP
Worwell wrote:
One other plus worth mentioning for the VMS is that you get two separate lines of CV, CVA and CVB. Whereas the CF has just one (with an inverse output).


This is what makes the Verbos playable - those to rows of sliders give visual and tactile feedback with immediate response: I can "improvise a tune" on it in realtime (admittedly once I have set the range of the sliders using offset/attenuation on the output...).

I keep looking at CF it as I find the idea of it very attractive in terms of its flexibility/precision/preset programability, etc, but keep shying way from it due to the quoted programming required to set up the playability. It seems to be just over my personal threshold for what I think of as "immediate playability"....but it is still on my "probably wanted" list. I think I need some hands-on time with it, or a project/plan for which it is uniquely equipped, to grasp the potential.... I am trying!
FatRocky
Very useful info
Thanks all!
porphyrion
Personally, I tend to prefer the interface and approach of the Multistage/ Sequence Selector (I'd also take sliders over knobs any day of the week; as well as preferring switches to push-buttons, but it's true, they're not 'exact' to dial in and 2 MS are huge hp-wise; I have 2).
Perhaps a limitation of mine, but I can only handle a few modules with the CF's digital ultra-precision that has to be planned in advance or that relies on loading pre-programmed settings.
Love the Morpheus filter and I do have a Control Forge incoming (it's too powerful to not see firsthand what it could do), but I wouldn't want more of my modules to start feeling like mini-DAW's, that's not really why I went modular.
luketeaford
A fun thing I've been doing is using the voltage multistage to the analog in of the sequence selector-- tune sequence selector to pentatonic scale and attenuateit so the highest note is the fifth scale degree. Now you are effectively quantizing the vms and have a really fun sequencer. However this does just sort of shift the problem to the sequence selector which now cannot be changed on the fly.
MarcelP
porphyrion wrote:

Perhaps a limitation of mine, but I can only handle a few modules with the CF's digital ultra-precision that has to be planned in advance or that relies on loading pre-programmed settings.
Love the Morpheus filter and I do have a Control Forge incoming (it's too powerful to not see firsthand what it could do), but I wouldn't want more of my modules to start feeling like mini-DAW's, that's not really why I went modular.


Yes, very well put. I think my threshold is very similar to yours; Morpheus is OK but CF possibly isn't - I would be really interested to hear how you get on with it!

I think each modular user needs to find their own line - many seem to have gone to modular to get away from (for want of a better term) pre-programming, but one needs to recognise the benefits of accessing all that power with a bit of menu diving/programming.
confusedmachine
[quote="Worwell"][quote="mdoudoroff"]
Worwell wrote:
I
I like the VMS. It just seems like the CF is the next level, modern version of the concept.


It looks like the antithesis of playable. Modal and menu driven. The VMS has the funk. control pitch and envelopes from the different channels and you get magic. Especially with the slides.
FatRocky
this thread is getting better

anyone got both and use them together in some way?
mdoudoroff
confusedmachine wrote:

It looks like the antithesis of playable. Modal and menu driven. The VMS has the funk. control pitch and envelopes from the different channels and you get magic. Especially with the slides.


CF has some mild modality in that there’s a PLAY mode and PROGRAM mode you toggle between depending on what you’re up to, but I don’t think it’s really accurate to describe CF as menu-driven (counter-example: Ornament & Crime is menu-driven). There is a settings menu, but you don’t tend to use it as a matter of course. Rather, the CF interface is largely focused on exposing all the features of an individual stage (or step) in the sequence, as opposed to representing the sequence as a whole. In this case, “exposing” means you tap the feature (associated button) and turn a knob. But it’s knob, not a slider, and there’s no hard stop.

Modules like the Verbos Multistage represent the sequence as a whole: each stage (or step) has a dedicated set of controls right there in front of you. It is what it is. On the Verbos Multistage, you can grab two or more of those sliders and flick them up to the top or bottom simultaneously, or tweak them in parallel. You simply cannot do that on CF, because it is so digital and because it’s stage/step-focused.

On the other hand, CF does have some ability to jump around that the Multistage does not. The momentary buttons can be “played” at a sort of macro level while in the flow. And of course, the list of what CF can do that the Multistage cannot is quite long, but the process is so utterly different.
mdoudoroff
Having spent a little time with the PLAY features on Control Forge, I’m inclined to generally agree with MarcelP and confusedmachine: this is not what I’d call a playable module.

You can manually start/stop presets you’ve set up, prior, or simply unleash a one-shot burst of CV gobbledygook. You can kind of rhythmically mess with a playing sequence by tapping stage buttons. Yes, you can manually emit triggers, but there’s nothing all that special about that! Spontaneous randomization may be useful in some specific circumstances—depends on what you do—but again, you’ve got to have planned that out ahead of time. Manually fussing with the time multiplier might be useful for intro/outro situations (you could do the same on the VMS). Fussing with CV3/CV4 can be done, but you’d have to have a specific plan for that going in, because they do nothing otherwise. And see below. Anyway, I’m not sure any of this is really “playing” so much as “interfering”.

With CF, you’re certainly not sculpting anything directly in the manner of—say—manually adjusting a filter cut-off up or down. The dials on CF directly interfere with that. The second you wiggle either the CV3 or CV4 dials, the given value leaps to whatever the dial is set to. The primary encoder either raises or lowers a value very slowly (high precision) with no physical sense of where you are (turn and turn and turn) or, if you’re holding the knob down, leaps around in large increments.

(Note that little of this even applies to Satellite—I suppose you can still interactively punch the stage buttons or twiddle the time multiplier.)

I still feel that CF’s attraction is that it makes certain things possible that would otherwise be impossible, but it doesn’t necessarily make anything that immediately accessible. The UIs focus on an individual stage, rather than the sequence as a whole, really moves the tool into its own category.

There’s hypothetical potential here for a huge and very expensive “Super Control Forge” where each of the eight stages has dedicated controls (at least for the key parameters). A long, ER-301-like display would probably be necessary to display critical info above each stage, and the unit would wind up over 50HP. There might even be a market for it if Rossum could figure out a way to support external clock sync.
MarcelP
mdoudoroff wrote:
Having spent a little time with the PLAY features on Control Forge, I’m inclined to generally agree with MarcelP and confusedmachine: this is not what I’d call a playable module.



Hi, Thanks for that detailed and considered response - this is still a module I can't quite get out of my head...so...I wondered what it would take (module wise) to simulate what the CF can do.

I stopped when the price reached 5 times that of the CF - and certainly don't think this could do what the CF does by a loooong margin!

Control Forge Simulator

On the plus side for CF: I think it shows how powerful CF is, how much cheaper the CF is over the discrete module approach and how much space it would save. Also it shows how damned clever the interface really is to get access to all those parameters so easily.

However... given the choice of a shed full of discrete modules with individual control of their many parameters and access to all the patch-points for "other purposes" - and that the individual modules can be utilised for anything else when one isn't needing to form a mega-waggly control voltage (or 2)...the discrete module approach wins for me....

But the CF is so damned clever!! very frustrating
methodius
Have both, for me VMS is def more playable. CF is more powerful but it is still lacking syncing segments(/segment divisions) to external clocks which for me would make it ultra awesome...hope they can still implement that somehow.
FatRocky
would it be logical to say that (regarding the cv segment function only) the Control Forge can be emulated by two Voltage Multistage, a Sequence Selector and something like the FLAME QUAD CV RECORDER, PLAYER hmmm..... ?
MarcelP
FatRocky wrote:
would it be logical to say that (regarding the cv segment function only) the Control Forge can be emulated by two Voltage Multistage, a Sequence Selector and something like the FLAME QUAD CV RECORDER, PLAYER hmmm..... ?


Well - that was where I was coming from when I made the link to the control forge simulator above - but each stage can be such a wide range of variable LFO wobbles, noise, different curve shapes, etc, that any emulation would need a 6U rack of kit to get close... And that is without triggering the stages individually, getting the timings set precisely... What the SF can do is fairly mind-boggling - but it boggles my mind thinking what to do with it! It's like a fabulous solution to a problem I didn't realise I have...
FatRocky
Which one would you try-study first?
The flexible or the playable?

hmmm..... thumbs up
nectarios
Its all down to what you see your self doing and how you like to program things.
I haven't used the CF but I've used the VMS and the way its build, it was just spitting out magic constantly, just need to get used to the sliders as there is a short throw for so many Volts.

I saw demos of how the CF is programmed, I can definitely say that its not for me.
MarcelP
nectarios wrote:
just need to get used to the sliders as there is a short throw for so many Volts.
.


I always have a ALM O/A/X2 on the output to get the range "playable"...
FatRocky
decided ! CF is a beast but not my kind of module

Im going VMS x two
jesselucas
FatRocky wrote:
decided ! CF is a beast but not my kind of module

Im going VMS x two

applause w00t applause

What switch are you planning to use to chain them together? I'm trying to decide between the Verbos SS and the A-151.
FatRocky
i have the WMD switch matrix

screaming goo yo SlayerBadger! w00t
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