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Why do low pass gates only exist in modular?
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Modular Synth General Discussion  
Author Why do low pass gates only exist in modular?
SunPulse
I've been wondering why low pass gates only seem to exist in the modular synth world. I love the sound of a LPG, but I can't think of a single non-modular synth that has had one. Any thoughts on why this is?
electricanada
SunPulse wrote:
I've been wondering why low pass gates only seem to exist in the modular synth world. I love the sound of a LPG, but I can't think of a single non-modular synth that has had one. Any thoughts on why this is?


Mostly fashion I would guess. The Shallow Water pedal has one though.
basstromme
Buchla Touché, 400 and 700 had them, one for each voice I think.
They are a bit harder to match than other filters wrt polyphony, they don't allow for instant grat "wooieeeeeeh" type resonant sweeps, they don't allow for fast attacks... Few people even knew about them until 10 or 15 years ago.
nios
a.) Everyone else in non-modular in the 60s copied Moog, not Buchla. There was no East vs West coast in the common scene, it was just all East coast.
b.) Vactrols were as far as I can tell, considered sub-par tech for their lag back then, not prized like today. Digital anything was prized, for the pure precision... there's a reason things went the way they did with analogs the first time.
c.) Variance between individual units probably made them unpalatable for mass-production models even if someone considered it

To me, it's far odder that wave folder/rectifier sections for extra timbre shaping never made it anywhere in normal-synth-land. You would have thought, that someone would bust those out as a major feature or even just a gimmick back in the 70s-80s or would have already heavily marketed them by now in this 10s analog renaissance. I guess it'll happen eventually.
Gaetan
Outside of historical reasons, I don't think a low-pass gate makes so much sense in a fixed architecture synth. I love LPGs in modular because they are fun to patch and basically combine filter, VCA and envelope in one module, as long as you're looking for that percussive sound. If you put it in a hard-wired synth, it turns pretty limited.
Most synths have either 2 envelopes for filter and amplitude, or one envelope that you can route to either. If you use the same envelope for both, you basically have an LPG already anyway.
SunPulse
I never thought of Buchla, I'm a big fan of the Music Easel and referred to it when selecting modules for my eurorack.

nios wrote:
To me, it's far odder that wave folder/rectifier sections for extra timbre shaping never made it anywhere in normal-synth-land.


Excellent point about wave folders!
tito_tunes
The extra VCA in the MS-20 is a vactrol
tito_tunes
nios wrote:
To me, it's far odder that wave folder/rectifier sections for extra timbre shaping never made it anywhere in normal-synth-land. You would have thought, that someone would bust those out as a major feature or even just a gimmick back in the 70s-80s or would have already heavily marketed them by now in this 10s analog renaissance.


Wavefolders sound amazing on guitars too. Would make a killer pedal.
notmiserlouagain
tito_tunes wrote:
...a killer pedal.

Exact description of Crowther Prunes & Custard we're not worthy
authorless
They are less versatile than other filters and VCAs.
Blairio
tito_tunes wrote:
nios wrote:
To me, it's far odder that wave folder/rectifier sections for extra timbre shaping never made it anywhere in normal-synth-land. You would have thought, that someone would bust those out as a major feature or even just a gimmick back in the 70s-80s or would have already heavily marketed them by now in this 10s analog renaissance.


Wavefolders sound amazing on guitars too. Would make a killer pedal.


Wavefolders tend to work best on simple waveforms, like sine or triangle waves. The more harmonically complex the input signal, the less coherent the output.

i write as a wavefolder fan (in eurorack). The intellijel uFold mk2 is my favourite, along with the wavefold/shape function in MakeNoise's STO.
tito_tunes
Blairio wrote:
Wavefolders tend to work best on simple waveforms, like sine or triangle waves. The more harmonically complex the input signal, the less coherent the output.


My favorite place for wavefolders is after a resonant filter, I use them to add "woodiness" and body resonance in analog physical modeling patches.
Easterner
I like pinging LPGs and am going to try adding two Optomixes for four LPGs to a 4x Behringer Model D modular polysynth that I’m putting together... and given the other ideas here, perhaps four wavefolders...
MindMachine
tito_tunes wrote:
Blairio wrote:
Wavefolders tend to work best on simple waveforms, like sine or triangle waves. The more harmonically complex the input signal, the less coherent the output.


My favorite place for wavefolders is after a resonant filter, I use them to add "woodiness" and body resonance in analog physical modeling patches.


Interesting. Serge thought they mostly would be before a VCF (if at all incorporating a VCF). Now you have me thinking about one prior to VCF and one post VCF.

Off to the Lab... Alien


Oh yeah, I've seen vactrols in several pedal designs before - maybe two or three. I cannot remember which ones right now.
tito_tunes
MindMachine wrote:
Interesting. Serge thought they mostly would be before a VCF (if at all incorporating a VCF). Now you have me thinking about one prior to VCF and one post VCF.



I came up with that configuration because I like to start with pulse waves, so the filter rounds them out a bit so the wavefolder can act on them.
UltraViolet
tito_tunes wrote:
My favorite place for wavefolders is after a resonant filter, I use them to add "woodiness" and body resonance in analog physical modeling patches.


I agree that is a really interesting use to add harmonic content after a filter.
EATyourGUITAR
maybe more importantly we should consider vactrols, LDR etc..what about the univibe? it was used on organs to simulate a leslie rotating speaker. before LED + LDR we had light bulbs + LDR.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uni-Vibe

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Univox

LDR was also used in many different organ companies to sense the position of a human interface device such as an expression pedal. Morley used LDR on a wah pedal. no string, no pots.

the LDR is inherently a low pass filter. if you use it in a synth, you can't really turn it off unless you bypass it to turn it off. they are also larger than opamps. it has already been said that they are inconsistent for manufacturing purposes. Buchla was making things in very small numbers so none of that mattered to him. I think Peter Blacer is today's modern equivalent of Don Buchla. you let the available components tell you what sounds they want to make. you use what you have available at the time. you start with a blank sheet of paper. LPG is a product of this philosophy. synth companies want to boast about product superiority. they also care about scaling up, making large amounts of money, dominating the market with extremely over engineered mass produced designs.
Michael O.
Nearly identical tech is used in a slightly different application in opto compressors. In the UREI LA-4, for instance, the gain reduction device is an LDR, and the fast attack/slow release characteristics are very similar to what one encounters with vactrol based synth circuits like LPG’s.
search64
nios wrote:
To me, it's far odder that wave folder/rectifier sections for extra timbre shaping never made it anywhere in normal-synth-land. You would have thought, that someone would bust those out as a major feature or even just a gimmick back in the 70s-80s or would have already heavily marketed them by now in this 10s analog renaissance. I guess it'll happen eventually.


The metalizer that's on Minibrute and Microbrute is a wave folder. There must be more synths that have it as well.

Thing is that most "normal" synths are still more east coast based, using complex waveforms that don't work with wavefolders.
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