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Introduction and some noob questions
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Modular Synth General Discussion  
Author Introduction and some noob questions
Mr. Aloud
Hi all,

after a long time the day has come, I´m finally stepping into modular territory! I played with electronic music devices for quite some time and now want to go deeper, partly because I can´t buy what I want and partly because a deeper understanding of what´s going technically is driving me.

Of course, as a newbie, there is a few questions I didn´t find in the FAQs and tutorials. So if you can help me doing the first steps right, that would be much appreciated!

As much as I´d prefer 5U, Eurorack is the way to go: Already own a Neutron, looking at the Delta CEP and obviously the number of modules to choose from.

A general question: I´m not a big fan of loose pots and flimsy controls and I have no idea which brands tend to offer a more robust feel. For example, my Doepfer MAQ has very light pots, which makes me think about either selling the box or replacing the pots. If their modules feel the same way, they are probably not my favourites. In contrast, SE-1x for example feels much nicer, good old mono/poly as well, nord rack too. So which are the brands that offer that kind of controls?

In regards to projects, I have two things in mind. Let me know what you think.

ONE: The uber phaser. My favourite effect next to delay, I want to build something that does more than sweep a bit back and forth. Got the MF-103, which could be extended by a bunch of LFO and ENV modules, but a pure rack setup may be nicer. Long sweeps over 4-32 bars, modulation of low and high turning point/frequency, different modulations like saw, s+h and sequence are what I´m after. Not sure if MIDI is the best idea because of stepping, but then again, everything else here is MIDIfied, so it should at least be an option. I´d like to have this run on its own and surprise me by overlapping modulations on one day and be control freakish by drawing CC lines in the DAW on the next.

TWO: The morpholator. I like minimal music, simple sequences, evolving patters, where the beef is in the timbre modulations. That´s why I think of a Delta CEP (and this one finally made me go modular). But then again it´s the all in one box solutions and it may be more interesting to go for the Swarm OSC and add full modules instead of going the semi-modular way (yes, it´s probably going to cost more). Maybe it´s even wiser to not expect the morph magic being done in a single module, but aim for more control over the processe by running two or four OSCs and a bunch of mixers for audio and CV? That would probably allow for some mono/poly oriented playing as well, so one can either morph or switch. Not sure which approach makes more sense.

So, a long post, sorry for that, but my head is spinning and I needed to share smile.
Rex Coil 7
Welcome Home, Member *Mr. Aloud ...

Rex Coil 7
Doepfer modules use really nice ~solid~ feeling pots.

I believe the MAQ is a digital device and the "pots" are not pots, but are actually "encoders". Many encoders feel "loose" or sloppy, but that doesn't mean they are bad. I fully understand your preference for solid feeling gear (and I agree with you). But you need to understand that many digital things use encoders, many of which have that loose/cheaply made feeling.

Doepfer stuff, by and large, is built tough as a manhole cover and may even outlive you. Many of Doepfer's modules use through hole PCB components which makes repairs and/or modifications very simple to do. So there's another aspect of their longevity.

Many manufacturers use pots made by a company called "Bourns". Pots made by them are generally top-of-the-pile when it comes to quality and "cycle life" ... you'll note that many Bourns pots may be cycled up into the millions of times. Where less costly pots are rated far (FAR!!) lower than that. HOWEVER .... some Bourns pots feel loose, but that does not mean they are cheaply made.

It may take you some time to learn the ins/outs of everything, but the information you seek Young Skywalker is to be found within the forum known as Muffwigglers.

thumbs up
Mr. Aloud
Ah, I see, thanks for the heads up. The MAQ is digital, but reads analog pots to get the MIDI values it sends. Good to hear that my unit is not representing the feeling of current modules! Bad news is that I´m now even more tempted to replace those 48 pots, which is a job I tried to avoid wink

In a galaxy not too far away, a young apprentice will now study more...
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