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Mother 32 vs. DFAM (Is this a valid question now?)
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Eurorack Modules  
Author Mother 32 vs. DFAM (Is this a valid question now?)
slentthndr
Look past the obvious differences for a moment... we all know that the native envelopes and sequencing on the DFAM are set up to encourage percussive sound design whereas the Mother is set up for... general purpose I suppose?

But entertain this question for a bit. For a novice choosing his/her first semi-modular synth (the backbone of a new setup), the Mother has always been an easy choice. Is that still the case or is the DFAM just as capable as a starting point?

You're missing an LFO on the DFAM but that's easy enough to supplement. The upside of the DFAM is that you have two VCOs which opens up a lot of possibility.

Idk. Perhaps the Mother is still the reigning champion. I'm interested in everyone's thoughts.
Roy72
DFAM lacks quantised pitch, unless you have external gear to do that. So unless you have maybe a BSP or something its not going to play nicely in tune so much. The Mother is a useful entry, you can play along with anything pretty easily, the DFAM looks like the spice rack.
slentthndr
Roy72 wrote:
DFAM lacks quantised pitch, unless you have external gear to do that. So unless you have maybe a BSP or something its not going to play nicely in tune so much. The Mother is a useful entry, you can play along with anything pretty easily, the DFAM looks like the spice rack.


Well yeah I'm sort of assuming that this hypothetical newbie is using MIDI input from somewhere (a DAW, a keyboard, a better sequencer module, or something like the BSP). Most musicians who pick up the DFAM will have access to one of those.

Does that address your point or do I not really know what quantized pitch is? Isn't anything sending a pitch CV going to effectively 'quantize' the pitch?
AW198
The Mother 32 is a wonderful starting point for general modular stuff as well as being an excellent synth in its own right, and can be self-modulated as simplly or as complex as you want.

The DFAM seems like a fresh take on percussion, but is very specific in what it does, and looks like it happily receives modulation but isn't so happy about giving it.

Disclaimer, I haven't actually tried a DFAM but that's the impression I get. Can someone confirm/deny my claims?
gentle_attack
slentthndr wrote:
Well yeah I'm sort of assuming that this hypothetical newbie is using MIDI input from somewhere (a DAW, a keyboard, a better sequencer module, or something like the BSP). Most musicians who pick up the DFAM will have access to one of those.

Does that address your point or do I not really know what quantized pitch is? Isn't anything sending a pitch CV going to effectively 'quantize' the pitch?

You're correct, completely. The point being made is that if you sit down with the DFAM and I sit down with M32 (really anything that plays in westeren tuning) you would have to individually tune each step in your sequencer (if you wanted to be in tune with me)... rather than on a traditional melodic synthesizer where you'd get in tune with 'pitch' and maybe a 'fine' and then you're in business for the rest of the evening.

The DFAM can work just like any other synth using any quantized external sequencer (DAW, CV, or otherwise), but the builtin sequencer is not quantized.
Roy72
DFAM doesn't have midi or usb, its all analog, so unless you have something else with CV out like a BSP it won't play along or sync to anything.
monoscan
Mother-32 sounds awesome. I think DFAM seems super limited, but I also have never played one. I bet they are fun.

What I'm anxious to see happen next is a Moog delay / filter / spring reverb effects box in the Mother format. I mentioned it to Moog on Twitter when I showed them my Mother-32 in my classroom but they quickly undid that retweet with the suggestion about a new product in the Mother line.
alanza
AW198 wrote:
The Mother 32 is a wonderful starting point for general modular stuff as well as being an excellent synth in its own right, and can be self-modulated as simplly or as complex as you want.

The DFAM seems like a fresh take on percussion, but is very specific in what it does, and looks like it happily receives modulation but isn't so happy about giving it.

Disclaimer, I haven't actually tried a DFAM but that's the impression I get. Can someone confirm/deny my claims?


I guess it mostly depends what sort of modulation you're hoping to get out of it—it does send trigger, pitch CV and velocity CV from the sequencer, as well as three concurrently triggered but independently configurable AD envelopes with CV over decay.

At least in my theory-wiggling (is that a thing? fantasy-football-wiggling? what's a good metaphor here), it seems like those outputs would be most useful for self-patching, it's true.
Fugubot
Thanks for this thread. A salesman at a store advised me to get the DFAM because it could do everything the Mother32 could but he did not say anything about quantizers.
AW198
Fugubot wrote:
Thanks for this thread. A salesman at a store advised me to get the DFAM because it could do everything the Mother32 could but he did not say anything about quantizers.


That salesman apparently has no idea what he's doing eek!
yamzini
I own a dfam and have played around with a mother 32. The dfam is pretty eventually which is why I opted for it over the mother but I don't think it could feasibly operate as the backbone of a system in the way the mother can, partially because of the sequencing limitations, but also because the tools for shaping the sound interact in slightly more unpredictable ways than the circuits offered by the mother.

It's also at its best when self patching with a few external CV sources (PITCH!) as opposed to being fully intended into another system or relied on for heavy lifting.

Also it's only got an eight step sequencer!

As someone just learning modular, who is mostly sequencing samples and chops externally on a sampler, the dfam is great BUT I feel like the next few steps in my system will phase it out and, had I purchased a mother, it would have been worth consciously planning my build around it.
milkshake
If your really into techno, the DFAM is the first choice.

Anything else, go for the M32.
mayz
Just got started with the mother a few weeks ago.
Having watched the Promo Videos from Bana Haffar I really have to say that this combo could be my setup for the future.
falseeye
If i had never qwned or played either of these I would probably agree with most people on here that the mother would be a better starting point , but having played a mother 32 for 30 mins or so in the store im sorry but it didnt really click with me . its nice and all but ive never been into the whole band in a box type modules so maybe im biased but when i got ahold of a dfam i was blowen away . Its an industrial percussion monster . right out of the box i was getting amazing sounds , tons of fun , and very usefull in a melodic way . I find it very versitile to switch from industrial edm house to ambient and drones . I still am not at all interested in the mother 32 but ill never give up my dfam , its in all my tracks now
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