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looking for FM, sync and Harmonics tones module
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Modular Synth General Discussion  
Author looking for FM, sync and Harmonics tones module
analogsplitter
I picked up a ToppoBrillo Triple Wave Folder recently and was surprised that an external module (that's not a vco itself) could do FM-overtone sounds so well. It seems to have a wide variety of tones and smooth FM timbres (and sweeps evenly without the harmonics jumpyness that you hear when sweeping a VCO through FM).

I also noticed the Happy Nerding FM AID is a module that does FM, and sounds quite a bit different than the usual FM abilities of a standard VCO (the FM AID smoothly transitions between harmonics).

Any other modules come to mind that can achieve nice FM transients, added harmonics (or smoothly transitioning sync overtones)? (I'd prefer analog-only eurorack or frac only modules, and hopefully stuff on the non-gritty side of the harmonic spectrum.)

Verbos Harmonic Oscillator looks nice... but exceeds the budget...
Dave Peck
Wavefolding is not FM (frequency modulation), it is a type of wave shaping that is actually amplitude modulation. It is processing the signal by folding the top & bottom of the waveform back in the other direction, vertically (the amplitude domain). This process does not modulate the frequency of the waveform. Although it can sometimes sound similar to a 2-op FM sweep because of the way it is adding new harmonics as the waveform becomes more complex when folded.

It sounds like what you really are interested in are any wave shaping modules that add harmonics in interesting ways, regardless of the method used, rather than specifically "FM".

You may want to check out various other 'wave folder' or 'wave wrapper' or 'wave multiplier' modules, since they don't all sound the same.

There are also some interesting complex distortion modules like the MOTM "Wave Warper" you may want to check out, although it's a pretty rare item. The Oakley / Krisp1 "Discontinuity" module combines some wave folding with other non-linear processing/distortion techniques.
ranix
The fm aid is great, you won't regret getting one or two.
Dave Peck
You can also get these kinds of results by patching the audio waveform through a VC phase shifter and modulating the phaser center frequency with an audio - rate waveform, which could be either the same signal being patched through the audio I/O of the phaser or a different signal. Results will vary depending on the design & features of the phase shifter.
Rex Coil 7
Dave Peck wrote:
.... It sounds like what you really are interested in are any wave shaping modules that add harmonics in interesting ways, regardless of the method used...
I'm right there with the OP on that one ... I can recall having a hard time with some members being more interested in correcting me and wanting to explain all of these differences between various technical means and how ~this~ isn't (technically) the same as ~that~ (technically) and so on. I didn't really care how I got there, I just wanted brand names and model designations of "shit that makes it goo wub wub" (not really "wub wub" but I've made my point here).

I know my remark may seem as though it's aimed at Member *Dave Peck ... it is not. The End.

Dave Peck wrote:
You may want to check out various other 'wave folder' or 'wave wrapper' or 'wave multiplier' modules, since they don't all sound the same.
A lot of wave table modules can produce the same sort of effect that various FM/Wave Folding/Hard Sync Sweeping/Wave Shaping gadgets do. The Waldorf NW1 comes to mind as a fun one (among many others).

LINK = http://analoguehaven.com/waldorf/nw1/


It comes down to liking the way the upper harmonics morph and change as well as being able to modulate those upper harmonic sweeps at will. However, you need to keep in mind that some of these wavey wonders require a LOT of resources ... for instance the Intellijel uFoldII wave folder is one of my own faves ... but it needs a LOT of VCAs, modulators, outboard VCOs, and so on for it to be any good to you. Pretty much just like a VCF .. the same way that to really wring out the goods from a filter it needs LFOs, Env Gens, and other modulators as well as an audio signal run through it. So remain aware of that when shopping this set of sounds out.

Yup, I'm in the exact same camp as the OP in that regard!

To Member *analogsplitter ... if you have the means to use Euro modules, take a look at the Make Noise DPO. It's a pair of VCOs that are normalized in various FM ways as well as having built in wave shaping/folding capabilities built in. Think of the DPO as a "self sufficient" wavey weirdness thing. All of the harmonic sweepy stuff also has full-on CV inputs for using outboard modulators to mess with those aspects. I've one for sale, PM if interested (if it's so damned great at making those sounds why am I selling it? .... because I've gone neck-deep into Ableton Live and it has all of that capability).

cool
analogsplitter
Thanks for the tips and suggestions.

Yes indeed, I guess that the TWF is more of an amplitude modulation than a FM. There are two inputs that interact on the module. The second input must modulate the bias of the initial input.

And thanks for the phase shifter modulation technique, I haven't tried that yet (and have an Oakley Equinoxe that will be employed soon).

I also run multiple sine waves from my Andromeda A6 into external ring modulators, which is pretty massive and swirling. The upside is that RM can handle polyphony.

I don't believe that wave folding would do so good with polyphony (might get a little fizzy?)??

Are there any variants of ring modulation that you know of? I know it's just bringing the volume up/down at audio rates, but am looking for interesting experimental alternatives (or some sort of additional, or parallel modulation), although I'm blanking on how you could make RM much different... perhaps by altering the carrier frequency or something??
Rex Coil 7
analogsplitter wrote:
Are there any variants of ring modulation that you know of? I know it's just bringing the volume up/down at audio rates, but am looking for interesting experimental alternatives (or some sort of additional, or parallel modulation), although I'm blanking on how you could make RM much different... perhaps by altering the carrier frequency or something??
There are several variants of ring modulators. Some use amplitude modulation, still others use a form of signal rectification. By changing the carrier AND/OR the modulator frequency you'll hear a large change in the sound.

In essence, most ring mods simply produce two extra pitches ... one lower than the carrier, and one higher than the carrier. Mix the three signals together and you get very metallic tones .... "bell like" is what most people describe the sound as.

Your best bet is to spend a few hours digging around in Tou Yube watching/listening to videos of wave folders, wave tables, "FM" sounds, ring modulators, and wave shapers. Discussing this by using printed words to describe the sounds is like trying to describe what the color BLUE looks like to someone that was born blind. (think about that for a moment).

So hit up the video demos of various modules to obtain a better sense of what the different wave shapey/modulator/folder/thingies do. You'll get a LOT farther, a LOT faster.

If you want to hear wavey wonders in a polyphonic setting, see the video of the brand new Korg Minilogue XD, especially the one posted by Sweetwater Sound.

My opinion one of THE best ring modulators (outboard type) is the Electro Harmonix "Ring Thing". I have one of those, and I simply love it. I've built and tested many MANY variations of ring modulators, and while some have great usefulness, the "Ring Thing" is ridiculously useful and musical. If you want one of the single most rude ring modulators out there, the "ring modulator" model in the Line 6 M5, or M9, or M13 digital multi-FX units has it going on. That digital ring modulator model can create a screech and scream like no other. It works great with analogue synths or analogue organs (ie; tonewheel generator Hammonds). Add a half second long or longer delay on it, and use vibrato or pitch bend (or both) at the end of a run with the Line 6 ring modulator and the effect is similar to a guitar player using what they call "pinch harmonics" to put a cap on phrases.

I found the Moog analog ring mods to be very disappointing. Dull, lacking "life", and the added harmonics sound like they're just sitting on top of the original sound. I've used the MoogerFooger and the MiniFooger ring mods. Yuk.

Now go hit the 'Tube .... spend time listening to various forms of wave tweekage, and you'll be better informed than reading a thousand words (or more) of text.

thumbs up
dooj88
this sounds like exactly what you're looking for.. unfortunately it hasn't been released yet.

basically a 4 stage wave multiplier with individual and CV control of polarity of amplitude/folding!! ben did a video which is linked to the MG site below

https://www.modulargrid.net/e/cfm-vqm
phineas
The random source/serge wave multiplier is also really great!
analogsplitter
I didn’t know there were different types of ring mod. I’ll check into that more. That’s essentially the type of info that I’m looking for, like knowing the details of what’s going on (like ring mod producing a tone above and below the initial tone). Thanks for the details and specifics on techniques.

I picked up a Happy Nerding FM Aid and it says that it does FM, but somewhere else it said it actually is doing phase modulation (as I believe that Dave Peck was alluding to earlier in the thread).

This type of modulation i wasn’t aware of, and is what looking for (fm into a phase shifter which outputs a sweep of the harmonic spectrum). Feel free to pass along any other types of techniques (side band, harmonics, fm techniques, alternate RM techniques). The more organic, earthy the better.
analogsplitter
... also, wondering if there is any way to get several overtones at once. The FM AID only outputs on dominant overtone at a time. Maybe there’s a way to do a feedback (routing the output to the input) in order to get overlapping overtones (thus eliminating the need for several FM AID modules)...
Maybe there’s a way to do it which a phase shifter (and some kind of feedback-delay module) somehow? Just throwing out ideas...
cptnal
I bought one of these on the strength of the videos recently:

http://dpw.se/product/mog-wf-1-wavefolder/

When I got it in my rack at first I thought I'd been sold a turkey, but the more I use it the more I like it. Subtlety is the key.
Dave Peck
analogsplitter wrote:
... also, wondering if there is any way to get several overtones at once. The FM AID only outputs on dominant overtone at a time. Maybe there’s a way to do a feedback (routing the output to the input) in order to get overlapping overtones (thus eliminating the need for several FM AID modules)...
Maybe there’s a way to do it which a phase shifter (and some kind of feedback-delay module) somehow? Just throwing out ideas...


You could control the audio osc that is patched into the FM Aid with a complex CV signal that is composed of two different oscs at different pitches, mixed together. Example: Main audio osc tuned to a low "C", control osc #1 tuned higher, to a "G" and control osc #2 tuned up an octave, to an "E".

Try patching that complex CV signal through a slowly sweeping phaser or resonant filter before it goes to the FM Aid, to gradually shift the harmonic content of that CV source to add some interesting motion to the modulation which will gradually emphasizes various harmonics in the final output signal....

This is fun!
analogsplitter
Thanks Dave Peck. I gave it a try to nice results. The tuning of the 3 oscillators has to be right on the octaves and 5th, or else things get a bit fuzzy sounding.

I was curious about Rex Coil 7 talking about rectification type of ring modulation (which I've never heard). Can this be achieved with modules? That is - I heard that rectification is when you convert AC to DC (see 3:49 of the below video). How do you change AC to DC (in effect keeping only the negative, or positive part of a waveform)?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z0FO9AFuf2k

And one other question. I really like sine wave ring modulation, but am looking for a similar sound (bell like tones) that would allow those sets of tones to transition uniformly (without using a pitch shifter). With ring modulation, when you change the pitch of the carrier or the modulator, the tones pop in and out (kind of bubbling type sound). I haven't tried syncing any of the oscillators together to keep things moving linearly (like a chord evenly shifting up/down, or like a bell physically changing size) but am guessing that I'd get sync (cascading) sounds if I tried it...

My workaround is to introduce noise during the sweep, to obscure the RM-type bubbling sound. Crossfading between two different ring modulators (and oscillators) provides a smoother transition as well.
ranix
analogsplitter wrote:
Thanks Dave Peck. I gave it a try to nice results. The tuning of the 3 oscillators has to be right on the octaves and 5th, or else things get a bit fuzzy sounding.


You can get a good lock on the 5th (or the 3rd or whatever you like) by sending the square wave output of the "Carrier" oscillator to a cock multiplier or divider, then sending the output of the multiplier or divider through a band pass filter with low gain and high resonance. You tune the band pass filter to pass just the harmonic you're looking for, and send the same 1v/oct signal you use to tune the Carrier oscillator to the 1v/oct frequency control of the filter so your filter is always in the right "spot". That can get you a perfect 5th (or 3rd or whatever) to use as a modulator without much trouble. The math is a little easier with a clock divider than a multiplier but the divider tracks the modulator more slowly than a multiplier, resulting in a slightly different sound.

I've posted a few threads on this issue and my solutions to it, but I described what you call "fuzz" as "noise" and it seemed to have insulted the people I was talking to at the time.
Dave Peck
ranix wrote:

You can get a good lock on the 5th (or the 3rd or whatever you like) by sending the square wave output of the "Carrier" oscillator to a cock multiplier



ranix
ok you can just use the square wave directly for that don't make fun of me I just woke up w00t

you can also do crazy shit like sync your LFOs perfectly with the carrier oscillator and base your tempo off the carrier oscillator

edit: o wait I said cock divider zombie
dooj88
this thread is gold. imma have to try that technique.

not the cock thing tho, i dunno what that is.
analogsplitter
Yeah, considering the crazy names module makers like to make up for their modules, we don’t want to give them any ideas for a creative way to say clock divider.

And yeah, I’m definitely checking out that technique. Keep the ideas coming if there’s more.
ranix
I remembered why I use a clock divider to generate the 3:2 ratio for the 5th instead of just using the 3rd and 2nd harmonics of a base waveform.

The FM Aid needs a saw wave as its carrier input for the FM sounds I usually patch. It's a little tough (or at least idk how) to turn the sine output of the band pass filter into a saw.

I have been experimenting with using a ring modulator and another filter (low-pass this time) with a second oscillator to make a phase-locked loop of the output from the band pass filter. This has been fun but not entirely productive.
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