How to quantize?

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Blckstage
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How to quantize?

Post by Blckstage » Wed Jun 12, 2019 9:23 am

Hi everyone,

I own for 70% of the following synth and start playing on it for some months now. Getting to know my modules, play some patches to familiarize myself with the system nothing concrete. But there is one thing I can’t get my head around. Quantization, playing proper notes. I read that oscillators have to be tuned, my klavis twin waves can output a quantized signal then I have the 2hp arp and Qubit octone which can produced quantize voltages. I connected one of my twin waves to the Disting and yes I can tune my oscillator to a “C” an “A” a “B”,…. But actually I don’t know what I’m doing. Also when I set my twin waves in quantized mode and then check the tuning with my disting it doesn’t gave any proper note on the display.

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What is the method of working in such case? Do I need to tune the oscillator always to the same cartain note? does it depend in which scale I’m playing? I”m a totally noob if it comes to quantizing and hope I can find some answers here so I can learn myself the proper way to work in this case!

Thanks in advance for help and advise!

Jazzy

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lisa
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Post by lisa » Wed Jun 12, 2019 9:54 am

You could just tune it to your liking. If it sounds good, then it is good. :party:

The main reason that one doesn’t get a clear reading from the Disting tuner, I find, is that the sound is a bit complex. Disting needs a rather simple sound to do a good reading.
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Dave Peck
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Post by Dave Peck » Wed Jun 12, 2019 12:15 pm

A quantizer will output DC voltages in 1/12th volt increments, giving you 12 different DC voltage 'steps' per volt, to correspond with the fact that western scales use 12 notes in the octave.

To get the output of a quantizer to work the way it is intended, you need to connect the quantizer output to the 1V/OCT (one volt per octave) FM input on your oscillator. Doing this will cause the quanitzer output to control the oscillator frequency with voltage steps that result in the osc playing notes that are all tuned to frequencies which match the notes of a 12-tone scale. Are you doing this?

If you connect the quantizer output to some other FM input on the oscillator, which has a variable FM amount control and is not calibrated to one volt per octave, this will change the quantizer voltage levels that are controlling the pitch of the oscillator and you will not get notes that match the pitch of notes in a 12 tone scale.

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Alphaman
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Post by Alphaman » Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:28 pm

i'm using the disting mk3 often to quantize the sequencer of my Moog DFAM. a bit fiddly, but it works somehow. a module that is specially built for this tasks, would be easier and faster to use of course.

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BenA718
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Post by BenA718 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:23 am

Your setup looks like a lot of fun!

Algorithms H3 and H4 on the Disting are dual quantizers, one with set scales. If you set both of your Distings for either of these you can get 4 quantized notes. For generating actual chords you are probably better off using a multi-track sequencer like the NerdSeq or Eloquencer, or get a polyphonic quantizer like the Quantimator.

When you tune your oscillators, the quantizer will provide chords or scales based on your "base" tuning; so if your oscillator is tuned to A, all of the quantized chords or scales will be based on A (A Major, A Minor, etc).

I supposed it's possible to tune your oscillators to different pitches, but once quantized there will probably be a lot of dissonance because of the way Western music is derived. With some basic applied music theory you could also set up your quantizers to play harmonized chords and scales but at that point I would personally much rather use a sequencer! (For example, you can tune an oscillator to E and use a minor chord quantizer and another oscillator to G an use a major chord quantizer; these chords are related to each other and will not produce dissonance)

On the other hand, you might really like the dissonance or are deliberately trying to use "rubs".

Blckstage
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Post by Blckstage » Mon Jun 17, 2019 2:11 pm

lisa wrote:You could just tune it to your liking. If it sounds good, then it is good. :party:
True! love it! :mrgreen:

Blckstage
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Post by Blckstage » Mon Jun 17, 2019 2:34 pm

BenA718 wrote:Your setup looks like a lot of fun!
Thanks it is!

Sorry for the late reply I was abroad for work...

If you are interested in the full version....

https://www.modulargrid.net/e/racks/view
BenA718 wrote: When you tune your oscillators, the quantizer will provide chords or scales based on your "base" tuning; so if your oscillator is tuned to A, all of the quantized chords or scales will be based on A (A Major, A Minor, etc).
OH YES!!! that's were I was looking for! :hail: quite straightforward if you tell it like this!

So in a nutshell. You tune an oscillator to a certain note let say "C" and then any quantized-sequencer-ish module wil play a chord, an arp,... in the scale from that note (basenote).

so let say I use my Qubit octone to drive the Klavis twinwaves. I tune the Twinwaves (let us forget it can be set in quantized mode) and play a quantized pattern
BenA718 wrote: I supposed it's possible to tune your oscillators to different pitches, but once quantized there will probably be a lot of dissonance because of the way Western music is derived. With some basic applied music theory you could also set up your quantizers to play harmonized chords and scales but at that point I would personally much rather use a sequencer! (For example, you can tune an oscillator to E and use a minor chord quantizer and another oscillator to G an use a major chord quantizer; these chords are related to each other and will not produce dissonance)
Thanks! this helps me a lot!

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artilect99
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Post by artilect99 » Tue Jul 16, 2019 12:29 pm

What do you guys use as a reference when tuning? A guitar tuner pedal, or...? I usually tune everything based on my moog minitaur just because I can play it with a MIDI controller. God knows if my C is really a C though.

I know there are one or two modules that just put out an A440hz tone. That would be useful but it would be better if you could select a pitch.

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Pelsea
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Post by Pelsea » Tue Jul 16, 2019 12:51 pm

Books and tutorials on modular synthesis at http://peterelsea.com
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pqe

jorg
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Post by jorg » Tue Jul 16, 2019 1:34 pm

Any guitar tuner will do - just make sure you feed it a fairly simple waveform and attenuate the signal so you don't blow up the tuner.

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Post by Triscus » Tue Jul 16, 2019 1:53 pm

BenA718 wrote:
When you tune your oscillators, the quantizer will provide chords or scales based on your "base" tuning; so if your oscillator is tuned to A, all of the quantized chords or scales will be based on A (A Major, A Minor, etc).
That's a bit misleading, you can set the quantizer to any scale in any key you want, not necessarily the key the oscillator it tuned to.

What I normally do is to input a CV value of one note into the osc and tune the osc to that note. But you need a CV source where you can be sure it puts out the correct voltage for that note. For me it's the Beatstep Pro or my Sonic Potions Quantizer.

In the end it doesn't depend on the concrete value, but you have to be sure that all you osc output the same frequency when fed with the same 1v/oct voltage.

Recently I got this tuner:

CHERUB WST 910

It's really fast, you can even tune while playing a sequence and the analog needle is good to read

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BenA718
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Post by BenA718 » Tue Jul 16, 2019 7:30 pm

Triscus wrote:
BenA718 wrote:
When you tune your oscillators, the quantizer will provide chords or scales based on your "base" tuning; so if your oscillator is tuned to A, all of the quantized chords or scales will be based on A (A Major, A Minor, etc).
That's a bit misleading, you can set the quantizer to any scale in any key you want, not necessarily the key the oscillator it tuned to.
I think you may be confusing a sequencer with a quantizer.

Triscus
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Post by Triscus » Wed Jul 17, 2019 3:40 am

BenA718 wrote:
Triscus wrote:
BenA718 wrote:
When you tune your oscillators, the quantizer will provide chords or scales based on your "base" tuning; so if your oscillator is tuned to A, all of the quantized chords or scales will be based on A (A Major, A Minor, etc).
That's a bit misleading, you can set the quantizer to any scale in any key you want, not necessarily the key the oscillator it tuned to.
I think you may be confusing a sequencer with a quantizer.
No I don't. How I understand your explanation: After tuned the osc to A (assuming 0V input to 1V/Oct) and feeding the 1V/Oct Input with quantized voltages, the osc is always playing notes in scales with the Key of A.

Sure, somehow all the frequencies are related to the base tuning, but they don't have to be in a scale with the Key of A.

Edit: I just noticed, the osc of the OP can be set in quantized mode and I thought there was an external quantizer used. :roll: So I think were were both right... Sorry for the confusion.

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mosorensen
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Post by mosorensen » Wed Jul 17, 2019 8:34 pm

Maybe this is the way to think about it. To tune my modular, I start from either an external keyboard (say, connected through Expert Sleepers FH-2) or from a sequencer. I press the "A" key on the keyboard, or set the sequencer to play an "A" note, and feed the resulting reference CV into the v/oct on a VCO. Then I tune the VCO, so with this reference CV, the VCO plays an "A" (440Hz). Now the VCO is in tune with the keyboard or the sequencer.

Looking at your rack, I don't see any modules that generate a reference CV associated with any particular notes. AFAIK, none of the modules are note sequencers or would allow you to connect an external keyboard.

This means that when tuning the VCOs, you don't really have any reference voltage to tune up against. You could tune the two VCO, for example, to play a "C" when you feed them 0V in v/oct, but this choice of reference voltage is pretty arbitrary, and tuning the VCOs to play any other note with a 0V CV would probably work equally well for you. So I wouldn't worry about it.

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