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Thoughts on a new 3x11 5U setup? (moving from Eurorack)
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Author Thoughts on a new 3x11 5U setup? (moving from Eurorack)
aswefallintostatic
Hey,

I have been doing Eurorack for the past 2-3 years but am increasingly feeling that the layouts of everything to feel too cramped. I really love the experience of playing 5U so am thinking of trading up.

My Eurorack system is based round generative rhythms from clocks / switches / logic and simple drum synthesis. I want to do something similar with a 5U system, but I have also always wanted to play around with a 960 sequencer so have tried to put the two worlds together in the following proposed layout for a 3x11 (largely) DOTCOM system





How does this look? In theory I can build sequences on the Q960 and then disrupt / manipulate them with the two switches powered by the sequencer interface and the logic / divider. There is a bit of depth coming from the ++ envelope and ++S&H. and otherwise MIDI in for syncing from my other synths and a usual selection of filters / oscillators.

Are there any glaring oversights / useful utility modules i didn't factor in?

Will 3 oscillators be enough given they are also LFO's? How are the ratios of VCA's to envelopes to filters etc...

Any suggestions of MU/5U specific modules / module pairs that i should check out for generative rhythm approaches?

Cheers
d
JohnLRice
Looks like a fun system as is! thumbs up

Here's a rework of your system, I kept the Q960 and made other changes that I thought would either enhance functionality and/or save space without losing functionality. And yeah, it's now a lot more dense which is something you maybe wanted to get away from coming from eurorack? hmmm..... And it's also a little over $1,500 more expensive! Mr. Green


EDIT: I deleted the above from my MG so I replaced the linked image with one uploaded to Muff's andd below is a module list:

Club of the Knobs C 961S
Synthesizers.com Q960
Synthesizers.com Q961
Free State FX Ornament And Crime

Moon Modular 501D
Synthesizers.com Q106A
Club of the Knobs C 969
CGS CGS88
KL-Module 311A
Moon Modular 564

Synthesizers.com Q174
Grove Audio GMS-294A
Synthesizers.com Q107A
STG Soundlabs Envelope Generator
STG Soundlabs Envelope Generator
Moon Modular 502D
Synthesizers.com Q124
Synthesizers.com Q157
Synthesizers.com Q113
hamildad
To Add: For drum /rhythm, the Q170 allows MIDI notes to be gates which is ideal for sending MIDI data and then triggering rhythms. also works as MIDI to divided clock. w00t

To Change. 3x 106 or 2x Moon 501D & expander? I've gone with the latter and although more expensive, Its a really nice to have 4x full features oscs.

To Keep. STG envelopes are great at short durations which makes me think they will be really great for drum/percussive stuff. also different slopes for different folks. would agree they are a worthy upgrade.

also you might want to hold off the Q960 till you have the basic set up set in stone as there are many other ways of triggering /sequencing, especially if you are adding a midi interface. Not buying a Q960 till later gives you moar moneys for the magic burritos.
aswefallintostatic
Thanks for the replies.

I was looking at the Q170 but wasn't quite sure if it was stand alone or if it was an expander to the Q174.

the 501D looks interesting, a bit more cluttered but undeniably better value for the HP!

@JohnLRice - thanks for the alternate layout. what are the two 1u modules on the middle row to the left of the 564 Sequential Divider Switch?

Are there any more logic modules out there ?
JohnLRice
aswefallintostatic wrote:
@JohnLRice - thanks for the alternate layout. what are the two 1u modules on the middle row to the left of the 564 Sequential Divider Switch?
One is a logic module and the other is a switch module. If you follow the link above the image you can see it on ModularGrid and get the details. thumbs up It's helpful when ever posting a ModularGrid image to provide a link so people can learn what everything is and make a copy etc. (they can't make changes to your layout though)
fac
Some thoughts:

1) Even though a 3x11 MU system is physically large-ish, it's actually a relatively small system, so space is premium. In that sense, I would suggest considering swapping those three Q106 VCOs for single-space VCOs. I think the doctom Q167 LFO++ is a good choice. I don't have any of those, but they look perfect for percussive stuff: they reach audio frequencies and incorporate a simple envelope that can be used to modulate amplitude or frequency.

2) There are also single-space versions of the Q107 and Q150 filters. If they have the features you need, you could save two more spaces.

3) I would add a module that different patterns of triggers/gates. For example, the dotcom Q173 Gate Math or the SSL V-Gates.

4) The SSL Tap Tempo LFO is pretty good for all kinds of CV-controlled rhythmic stuff (ratcheting, clock mult, adding swing, and many other things).

So, I would replace the Q106s with Q167s and the two-space filters with their single-space versions. That will free up five spaces. I would add a Q173 Gate Math and an SSL Tap Tempo LFO and leave two empty spaces for modules you might want in the future.
aswefallintostatic
JohnLRice wrote:
aswefallintostatic wrote:
@JohnLRice - thanks for the alternate layout. what are the two 1u modules on the middle row to the left of the 564 Sequential Divider Switch?
One is a logic module and the other is a switch module. If you follow the link above the image you can see it on ModularGrid and get the details. thumbs up It's helpful when ever posting a ModularGrid image to provide a link so people can learn what everything is and make a copy etc. (they can't make changes to your layout though)


Wonderful, thank you!
aswefallintostatic
fac wrote:
Some thoughts:

1) Even though a 3x11 MU system is physically large-ish, it's actually a relatively small system, so space is premium. In that sense, I would suggest considering swapping those three Q106 VCOs for single-space VCOs. I think the doctom Q167 LFO++ is a good choice. I don't have any of those, but they look perfect for percussive stuff: they reach audio frequencies and incorporate a simple envelope that can be used to modulate amplitude or frequency.

2) There are also single-space versions of the Q107 and Q150 filters. If they have the features you need, you could save two more spaces.

3) I would add a module that different patterns of triggers/gates. For example, the dotcom Q173 Gate Math or the SSL V-Gates.

4) The SSL Tap Tempo LFO is pretty good for all kinds of CV-controlled rhythmic stuff (ratcheting, clock mult, adding swing, and many other things).

So, I would replace the Q106s with Q167s and the two-space filters with their single-space versions. That will free up five spaces. I would add a Q173 Gate Math and an SSL Tap Tempo LFO and leave two empty spaces for modules you might want in the future.


All good thoughts, thank you! The tap tempo LFO looks great. I have a rebel tech chronos in euro format which is pretty similar by the looks of things!

I have the logic modules to produce unusual gates at the moment, what i would love is to get an 5U build of an RCD, because that + logic + switches is pretty much all you could ever need from a generative gate sequence point of view!

Am i right in thinking that the Q128 switch works basically the same as a doepfer A150? (apart from the fact that both switch circuits are controlled from a single gate input, rather than individually on the doepfer?)
fac
aswefallintostatic wrote:

I have the logic modules to produce unusual gates at the moment, what i would love is to get an 5U build of an RCD, because that + logic + switches is pretty much all you could ever need from a generative gate sequence point of view!

Am i right in thinking that the Q128 switch works basically the same as a doepfer A150? (apart from the fact that both switch circuits are controlled from a single gate input, rather than individually on the doepfer?)


I don't have an A150 so I'm not sure how it works regarding the CV input. I can see it working in two possible ways:

A.- When CV is low (say, 0 V), it switches to I/O1. When the CV is high (+5V) it switches to I/O2.

B.- When the CV receives a trigger, it switches between I/O1 and I/O2.

The Q128 does A, whereas the Q962 does B. Both are essential to me and I often use them together.

Regarding an RCD-like module in 5U, I'm pretty sure you can use the Q173 Gate Math as an RCD. You can store six configurations (e.g., setting up different divisors in each configuration) and then use a CV to switch between configurations.
Rex Coil 7
aswefallintostatic wrote:
Hey
hey yur dayum own self.

hamildad wrote:
To Add: ... moar moneys for the magic burritos.
you Wise Magic, right there.

Teh sacred burritos of teh magicals ams quite guud. Must have majek burrito mojyewls .. synthies sukcs and makes poo noise with no magic burrito.



ass.

Skate or die!
Faustgeist
Hmmmmm... Cult of the Knobs.... Hmmmmm...
bwhittington
fac wrote:
Regarding an RCD-like module in 5U, I'm pretty sure you can use the Q173 Gate Math as an RCD.


Yes, definitely.

Also, someone produced/produces(?) a RCD/SCM conversion in 5U. Analog Craftsman, I think?
Tronman
If you use Box11 cabinets and shallow modules (for instance all Dotcom modules), you can get rid of the Q124. But you will need a power supply like the QPS5.

Replacing a Q106 with 2 Q167 LFO++, or even one, will give you more variety.
hamildad
I've got a LFO++ and its currently in the Fur Coat No Knickers category.

I am sure it'll reveal its charms to me, but for the moment, I'd not happily lose a Osc for one of these...
kcd06
A Q963 trigger bus is something you might get some serious mileage out of, if you do do go with a Q960. I enjoy mine. Its cool that a Q960 can support up to three of them, but it would be even better if they could be associated with one of the three discreet lines/tracks/lanes/thingy from the Q963 rather than receiving a blanket assignment.

Also, another +1 for the STG envelops. I have an dotcom envelope++ and honestly, its used more as an arpeggiation tool--frequently triggered from the Q963--than as an envelop generator. I've wondered if an ssl double decka vco would have been a better/more flexible choice than the envelop++. This is not to claim that the dotcom module is bad or anything, just that its not what I thought it could be.
cornutt
You might be interested in the SSL Segwencer. It's a sort of window comparator, and you can use it to create some unusual rhythms if you drive it from a sync'ed LFO, or directly using a CV from your MIDI interface.

And regarding ordering stuff from Club of the Knobs... it's kind of a process. JLR orders from them a lot and can advise you.
Rex Coil 7
I'm trying something outside of my previous experience as an LFO. It's a dual LFO that uses a wavetable as the waveform source. It has all of the usual suspects used in most of the more mundane LFO tasks (sine, triangle, saw, square, pulse, etc..). But the intriguing part is using some of the more whack-ass waveforms as well as "morphing" between waves ... all used as modulators. It's just the buck standard Synthesis Technology E355 Dual Morphing LFO ... yea, but still! .... wavetable LFO YO!



Funny thing .... I'm listening to internet radio "70s Hard Rock" .... AC/DC "Girl's Got Rhythm" is playing, it's nearly in time with the picture above. Not quite right, but close enough to be fun!!


nanners
mutierend
The Q106 is a great oscillator, but I agree with others that a Moon 501D+Q106 would be a better choice in the interest of saving space. Also swap out the Q150 for the Q150A and the Q107 for the Q107A. You could also drop the two Q107s in favor of a Corsynth C102, which is two VCAs in one panel space. I would also 86 the Q118 and get two Q114s (Mixer++) so that you get some more utilities without sacrificing space. Those changes would save you four module spaces.

You don't have a quantizer in your setup, so I assume you're going to tune everything manually. If you decide a quantizer is appropriate, the Dotcom one is pretty good.
Rex Coil 7
mutierend wrote:
The Q106 is a great oscillator, but I agree with others that a Moon 501D+Q106 would be a better choice in the interest of saving space. Also swap out the Q150 for the Q150A and the Q107 for the Q107A. You could also drop the two Q107s in favor of a Corsynth C102, which is two VCAs in one panel space. I would also 86 the Q118 and get two Q114s (Mixer++) so that you get some more utilities without sacrificing space. Those changes would save you four module spaces.

You don't have a quantizer in your setup, so I assume you're going to tune everything manually. If you decide a quantizer is appropriate, the Dotcom one is pretty good.
Might look at the Oakley Journeyman filter. A pair of those would rule the planet!

thumbs up
Thalassa
mutierend wrote:
You could also drop the two Q107s in favor of a Corsynth C102, which is two VCAs in one panel space.


C108 is the dual vca the c102 is the VC lfo thumbs up
aswefallintostatic
Tronman wrote:
If you use Box11 cabinets and shallow modules (for instance all Dotcom modules), you can get rid of the Q124. But you will need a power supply like the QPS5.


Yeah, i wanted to ask about power. DO i need a Q101 and its associated modules? I noticed that the Dotcom 22 rack comes with 4 rear spaces i assume for power modules, and Dotcom themselves do a range of power modules, is there a goto that will cover all my bases or do i need to work it out on a module by module bases of who needs what kind of power?

kcd06 wrote:
A Q963 trigger bus is something you might get some serious mileage out of, if you do do go with a Q960.


- yeah, i was looking into that, definitely looks useful!

kcd06 wrote:
Also, another +1 for the STG envelops. I have an dotcom envelope++ and honestly, its used more as an arpeggiation tool--frequently triggered from the Q963--than as an envelop generator.



I am mostly interested int he envelope ++ for the fact you an control the attack / decay times via CV. It seems to work a bit like channel 1 or 4 of maths which is a feature i use al the time for giving percussion envelopes some life, i haven't found any other modules that offer this, particularly to alter the attack. Otherwise i could find a way to get CV control over the pulse width of a trigger going to an ADSR instead, as that would get a similar result.
hamildad
Sidecar of STG EG gives you CV control of all stages and trigger outs for all stages.

So you can use as a trigger delay, trigger sequencer, all sorts...

I’ve been using it for the basic duties of triggering a second EG during the release phase for some Timbral PWM on the die out.
s16016wb
You can never have enough VCA's. I've been very pleased with the Synthetic Sound Labs 1510 Octal VCA.

https://steamsynth.com/shop/moog-unit-modules/octal-linear-vca/

8 basic VCA's in one space!
Rex Coil 7
s16016wb wrote:
You can never have enough VCA's. I've been very pleased with the Synthetic Sound Labs 1510 Octal VCA.

https://steamsynth.com/shop/moog-unit-modules/octal-linear-vca/

8 basic VCA's in one space!
You're very passionate about your VCAs!! You've been a member for FIVE YEARS and this is your first post. Yup, I'd say .... quite passionate about your VCAs indeed! Enough so to motivate you to finally post something after FIVE YEARS of membership.

And, did I mention that you've been a member for FIVE YEARS without posting until today? Not sure if I mentioned that or not.







... FIVE YEARS ...
eek!





hihi
fac
Rex Coil 7 wrote:


... FIVE YEARS ...
eek!


Maybe he couldn't remember his username all this time?
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