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Voltage Block 0-5V CV output limitation
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Eurorack Modules  
Author Voltage Block 0-5V CV output limitation
Xtheunknown
What are everyone’s thoughts on the 0-5V limitation on the Voltage Block CV outputs? I’m really intrigued by the VB’s performance features, but I’m visualizing patching it and I see the need for multiple amplifiers and offsets just to get the output voltages into the correct range for different module inputs. Some modules expect 0-8V, some +/-5V, etc. I suppose if you restrict using the VB to just melodies, you could live with 0-5 volts since most melodies don’t span 8 or 10 octaves. But I would probably use half or more of the VB output channels for voltage control of other parameters.

Is this something that could be enhanced with a future firmware upgrade from Malekko (I’d love to see the voltage range adjustable per track)? Are there any other voltage sequencers that offer a selectable output voltage range per track? If not, how do other VB owners deal with the current limitation?
Xtheunknown
Any thoughts?
CaneMan
Don't have a Voltage Block, but I do have a 3x MIA for just that kind of thing. My Rossum Morpheus also has attenuvert/offset built-in for the 3 main CV inputs. So it depends on your mix of modules.

If the Voltage Block were on my radar, I'd get it for what it does and not worry too much about what it doesn't do. If it started monopolizing my 3x MIA, I'd probably get a second 3x MIA.
Xtheunknown
3x MIA looks awesome, especially for $100! Very handy.... that’s a good solution to the offset issue. Now to find a cost effective way to double the voltage for those +/- 5 volt inputs.
oinkbanana
CaneMan wrote:
Don't have a Voltage Block, but I do have a 3x MIA for just that kind of thing. My Rossum Morpheus also has attenuvert/offset built-in for the 3 main CV inputs. So it depends on your mix of modules.

If the Voltage Block were on my radar, I'd get it for what it does and not worry too much about what it doesn't do. If it started monopolizing my 3x MIA, I'd probably get a second 3x MIA.

how does the MIA get a 0 to 5v signal to be 0 to +10v or -5to+5v?
Does it amplify or only attenuate?
Xtheunknown
oinkbanana wrote:
CaneMan wrote:
Don't have a Voltage Block, but I do have a 3x MIA for just that kind of thing. My Rossum Morpheus also has attenuvert/offset built-in for the 3 main CV inputs. So it depends on your mix of modules.

If the Voltage Block were on my radar, I'd get it for what it does and not worry too much about what it doesn't do. If it started monopolizing my 3x MIA, I'd probably get a second 3x MIA.

how does the MIA get a 0 to 5v signal to be 0 to +10v or -5to+5v?
Does it amplify or only attenuate?


It can attenuate, mix and offset -but not amplify. So it can convert a 0-5V signal to a -2.5V to +2.5V, for example, but not to a +/-5V signal. Getting anything larger than 5V peak to peak from a 0-5V signal requires an amplifier.
Hovercraft
In practice, I haven't found the voltage output range to be a limitation. I use offset and attenuation as needed for everything in my modular, but the VB outputs are generally useful as they are. You can always add two ouputs together--that's the nice thing about having 8 outputs available.
Southfork
Welcome to eurorack the Wild West of voltages and the need for so many damn utility modules. I find more things moving towards 5v these days so you're ok for most modulation duties. A switch or jumper on the back would have been nice.
Xtheunknown
Per channel voltage range would be ideal, but given only a single output voltage range, I’d prefer 10V peak to peak. Attenuators and offsets are a whole lot cheaper than amplifiers...

I’m wondering if the VB design would allow for a change like this via a firmware update? The voltage range is my only reservation - otherwise this module is a powerhouse and a phenomenal value.

Thanks to everyone for your feedback and ideas. Greatly appreciated!
coolshirtdotjpg
10V would make the voltage block unusable. It's hard to land on an exact note as is. I don't see it as a huge limitation, but I also don't often need the entire range, and you can offset to the range you like with most modules.
Hovercraft
Think about the usual ways you process modulation voltages. People don't have racks full of amplifiers--most often you're offsetting or attenuverting. The 5V range was probably the best choice they could have made for the VB. The VB is a sequencer, so it's outputting unipolar voltages in a reasonable range. Sure, a jumper would have been nice--or even an input for a reference voltage, but I think the 5V choice requires the least possible processing to be useful.
Southfork
Xtheunknown wrote:
Per channel voltage range would be ideal, but given only a single output voltage range, I’d prefer 10V peak to peak. Attenuators and offsets are a whole lot cheaper than amplifiers...

I’m wondering if the VB design would allow for a change like this via a firmware update? The voltage range is my only reservation - otherwise this module is a powerhouse and a phenomenal value.

Thanks to everyone for your feedback and ideas. Greatly appreciated!


Doubtful it's in the hardware design if it's not got something already (switch, jumper etc). Funnily I just modded an ornament and crime just for 10v eg's and it required changing resistors to alter the voltage bias.
CaneMan
Xtheunknown wrote:
It can attenuate, mix and offset -but not amplify. So it can convert a 0-5V signal to a -2.5V to +2.5V, for example, but not to a +/-5V signal. Getting anything larger than 5V peak to peak from a 0-5V signal requires an amplifier.


Its natural gain is 1x. However, if you send a signal to both inputs on a channel, you can adjust the knobs to get 2x gain or to use it like an attenuator.
hinterlands303
A trick I use for voltage amplification is a multing the voltage signal into two inputs of a summing mixer or adder.
CaneMan
hinterlands303 wrote:
A trick I use for voltage amplification is a multing the voltage signal into two inputs of a summing mixer or adder.


I do believe we both just talked about the same trick.
resynthesize
here is my solution:

Hovercraft
The Levit8 looks helpful, but your cabling blocks a bunch of the VB controls. Going to assume this is not how you actually do the cabling—haha.
bc3
resynthesize wrote:
here is my solution:



So you can get -5v to +5v out when running the VB in through four of the channels that can invert the incoming voltage?
hinterlands303
CaneMan wrote:
hinterlands303 wrote:
A trick I use for voltage amplification is a multing the voltage signal into two inputs of a summing mixer or adder.


I do believe we both just talked about the same trick.


Right you are! I missed your post somehow.
wm.wragg
There’s always the Frap Tools 321 (http://frap.tools/products/321/). Each of it’s 3 channels has a 2x amplifier, as well as attenuator, offset, and inversion. Pretty cheap as well.
bc3
wm.wragg wrote:
There’s always the Frap Tools 321 (http://frap.tools/products/321/). Each of it’s 3 channels has a 2x amplifier, as well as attenuator, offset, and inversion. Pretty cheap as well.


So just to confirm, the Frap Tools 321 could take in the 0-5V range from a channel on the Voltage Block and covert it to a range of -5V to +5V?
wm.wragg
Yep as far as I know. The manual for it isn’t up yet, but I know the scale can multiply by 2, so that would take 5v to 10v, and I’m pretty sure the shift can shift by +-5v.
nickgrys
IMO, it's easier to attenuate or simply offset a 0-10V range than it is to amplify a 0-5V range. But it sounds like some people here have good solutions for amplifying that works well for them.

I haven't used the Voltage Block, but I have a Verbos Voltage Multistage. The VMS has a 0-10V range and there have been discussions about it being difficult to make melodic sequences. However, unless eurorack somehow standardizes voltage ranges, I think a larger range is generally more versatile.
Multi Grooves
Southfork wrote:
Welcome to eurorack the Wild West of voltages and the need for so many damn utility modules. I find more things moving towards 5v these days so you're ok for most modulation duties. A switch or jumper on the back would have been nice.



Dis^

Aside from the 321 (which is brilliant) there's the Doepfer 185-2...Though the former is the more elegant option.
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