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Input output to 1/4 inch...
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Eurorack Modules  
Author Input output to 1/4 inch...
WaveRider
Hi guys, another newbie question.

What are you using to get sound into and out of the modular?

I have a 1/4inch patch bay I am using now for synths and grooveboxes, effects.. I would like to go from my patchbay to the modular...

are you using:
1/4 to 1/8 adapters?
1/4 to 1/8 cables?
those panels like Harvestman Stillton adapter? since I do not use guitars I only use line level signals.. any other module you can suggest?

Plus I would like to have an Headphone socket!!!!! in the modular!

..so what do you guys are using?


I would love to have stereo in (2 x 1/4inch cables) + 2 x mono outs/stereo out (2 x 1/4inch cables) plus a headphones jack!!!
Kent
I use a salad of different solutions depending upon what is available. They all work for a given purpose. I've made a bunch of 1/4" to 1/8" cables. I've got Format Jumbler. There are some convertors built into my Vostok as well.
bastille
1/8 to 1/4 cables. 1/4 cables with stepdown adaptors feel too heavy; I worry about breaking the jacks.
automaton
I use the hell out of my Monorocket trunkline module for 1/4" conversion. That's one of the main reasons I went with the Gemini case... Well... that and it's an awesome case.

As for headphones, I have a Plan B Model 40 headphone amp, though, being Plan B, it can be a bit sketchy at times.
WaveRider
BTW In eurorack is the audio signal -10dbu or +4 dbu?


thanks


automaton wrote:

As for headphones, I have a Plan B Model 40 headphone amp, though, being Plan B, it can be a bit sketchy at times.


yeah that is perfect but can't order it anywhere! lol


bastille wrote:
1/8 to 1/4 cables. 1/4 cables with stepdown adaptors feel too heavy; I worry about breaking the jacks.


yeah that's what I figured, my 1/4 inch cables are too heavy they'll break the plugs




I have found the well named malekko heavy industry output witch is nice; they should make input as well!


So Format jumbler looks like a nice one....
sandyb
WaveRider wrote:
BTW In eurorack is the audio signal -10dbu or +4 dbu?


neither. it's higher than line level.
vanwulpen
What are you connecting it to mainly? For 'most' gear you will want to attenuate it going out or amp it up coming into the modular.
In general I'd recommend using caution and being conservative intially (just like anyone I have a little collection of small tidbits of audio toys) when hooking something up.
What I mean is...initially set the level going to such toys very low...easy enough to then crank it up to a reasonable level.
Most gear has adequate protection...but not everything (esp. vintage gear may not actually).
Also be warned that esp. some vintage gear does not tolerate DC levels...which are obviously easy to create on a modular.
Personally I use my Fonitronik Attenuverting mixer which has a DC/AC switch (and plenty other modules can do this) to make it AC coupled (unless it's some piece of gear I know is meant to be used and/or safe to use with DC)

It's hotter than +4dBu

First a fun link, online calculator
http://www.sengpielaudio.com/calculator-db-volt.htm

With most digital gear where +4dBu=-16dBFs appears to be one of those unspoken (in US at least) most-commonly used levels you're still fine for modular use..a bit hot coming in and a tad too weak going out..but still reasonable.
Taking that example put 20dBu in the calculator (which for +4dBu=-16dBFs) is a 0dBFs (maximum in the DAW) level...give you peak-peak 21.9V
modular typically is +12v to -12v (max) or 24v pk-pk) which is within the 21dBu range


I have it connected to my Symphony I/O and in essence set all IO to/from my modular are all set to +4dBu=-18dBFs, giving me levels which are very modular compatible (and using Silent Way the whole 10oct range :-) ). It gives me out upto 22dBu or 27.6 pk-pk and thus in practice a bit of headroom.

(the SIO goes upto +4dBu=-20 or 24dBu which is a whopping 34V pk-pk which would be fine with a modular with +-17V rails !!! :-)...yes very hot)

now this is balanced ....on some gear and pending how you cable it you'd loose 6dB going balanced to unbalanced (depends actually on how the gear works...most descent gear that won't be the case)

(fyi I am using an ES-1 DB25, and the 6 trunklines on my Monorocket Lexington)
the trunklines are unbalanced so it comes back less hot, which is fine with me

Sorry the above is a bit a random mind-fart...if that would be of interest I someday can writeup a little properly written (well within my ability to do that) thingie on modulars and levels and considerations. I think once you grasp what to be aware of it's easy and not scary...but it helps to have some basic notions in my opinion.

Was actually considering starting a little blog or so to share euro-related thingies with the world. Maybe blog entry 1 could just be explaining how I setup my gear (and how I calibrated it and so forth).
WaveRider
sandyb wrote:
WaveRider wrote:
BTW In eurorack is the audio signal -10dbu or +4 dbu?


neither. it's higher than line level.
d'oh!


vanwulpen wrote:

Also be warned that esp. some vintage gear does not tolerate DC levels...which are obviously easy to create on a modular.

It's hotter than +4dBu

First a fun link, online calculator
http://www.sengpielaudio.com/calculator-db-volt.htm

With most digital gear where +4dBu=-16dBFs appears to be one of those unspoken (in US at least) most-commonly used levels you're still fine for modular use..a bit hot coming in and a tad too weak going out..but still reasonable.
Taking that example put 20dBu in the calculator (which for +4dBu=-16dBFs) is a 0dBFs (maximum in the DAW) level...give you peak-peak 21.9V
modular typically is +12v to -12v (max) or 24v pk-pk) which is within the 21dBu range


meh ...nothing is simple with modulars eek! ..that was supposed to be an easy question dam it.. lol


I just want to send audio lines to my soundcard, rack mount effects, so back and forth, i.e. send audio to the modular to filter up stuff etc... then back in the mixer...

...so I'll take great care to find modules with amplification/attenuation for input/output duties, that is probably a sound investment to have in the first place
WaveRider
http://malekkoheavyindustry.com/index.php/OUTPUT

The Output module accepts a mono signal into the two inputs, A and B either individually or simultaneously, and can be attenuated from a maximum of unity gain to zero. The module is AC coupled on both the input and output to lessen the interactive effect on bias of equipment connected to it.

If the input is a single signal, in either input A or B, it is routed to both signal path A and B, and the signal in A is inverted. The signal is then routed to the output jacks as a stereo signal on output B and an inverted stereo signal on output A. You may select either of the outputs for the desired stereo signal or you may select both outputs A and B for a dual mono output, with the inverse signal being presented at output A.

If both inputs A and B are used simultaneously, the input in A is inverted and routed through the module’s A side signal path to the tip of output A and the ring of output B. The input in B is routed through the module’s B side signal path to the tip of output B and the ring of output A. Now you may choose either output A or B for a stereo output or both outputs A and B for a dual mono output with the signal input into B displayed at output B and the inverse of the signal input into A displayed at output A.
-----------------------------


very frustrating why do they invert the signals? that's not quite dual mono if one is inverted? and stereo 1/4 jacks? again I am lost on this overly complicated description -why not A to A and B to B plain and simple?
cv slime 800
RCA cables with an RCA to 3.5mm on one end & a RCA to 1/4 inch on the other are what I use and they feel more secure and less heavy that other adapter plug options.
jca
Analogue Solutions makes a headphone amp.

http://www.noisebug.net/site/analoguesolutions/index.cfm?id=27

For converters, I just ordered the parts from mouser.com and the blank panel from AH. I've used this for CV's with no issues for years. If you don't want to soder,

http://www.noisebug.net/site/analoguesolutions/index.cfm?ID=70
tuj
Just get some 1/8 to 1/4 cables and run your modular into your mixer or soundcard and adjust the gain appropriately. You will be fine if you have a gain control like a soundcard or mixer, then you can take the line level signal from there and send it through whatever you want. No need for special output modules or headphone amps unless you really want them.
suboptimal
The Malekko Output module is great. Since getting it I'm using it as my final output in every patch (why I bought two). Previously I was using the MFB Drum-99 mixer as my output stage and was very frustrated by that.

I'm hoping Malekko also comes up with an Input module along the same lines, although the 119 is adequate for a lot of things.

The Evin/Stilton combo is awesome if you're going to use it a lot. I've found that I don't use mine as much as I'd expected and now and then I think about selling it on, but it's the kind of thing that rocks your socks when you do need it.
WaveRider
thanks for all the tips, I'll sure get the A119 for input as an env. follower is a must for me -filtering drums- so that's a very nice input solution.

I found the format jumbler hard to beat covering a lot and with a good price/features ratio. I suppose that with the A138 mixer I'll get enough attenuation for the output.

jca wrote:
Analogue Solutions makes a headphone amp.
http://www.noisebug.net/site/analoguesolutions/index.cfm?id=27


yeah funny I never saw a mono headphone amp ever before hmmm.....

this one is almost perfect, a pan control in the 2 first inputs is all what's needed. And stereo outputs of course for headphones... but could be real useful for me

suboptimal wrote:
The Malekko Output module is great. Since getting it I'm using it as my final output in every patch (why I bought two).


Do you have 2 of them because the inverted phase thing or because you need 4 outputs? It sure looks super nice but still can't get if you can get 2 unbalanced 1/4 inch outputs with 1 module seriously, i just don't get it I can't decipher the description that's why I posted it here


automaton wrote:
I use the hell out of my Monorocket trunkline module for 1/4" conversion. That's one of the main reasons I went with the Gemini case...
...funny I ordered a Gemini too; what about this trunk? what it does? from the photos I tough it was only a 1/8 multiple

thanks again
suboptimal
I have a fairly big system and like the ability to have more than one main output with dedicated volume control. That it can act as a kind of faked stereo is a great bonus. I tend to run the OUTPUTs through my pair of T-Resonators almost all the time, to give you an idea of how I'm operating (i.e. messily).

The inverted phase thing hasn't arisen as an issue for me so far. I'm pretty much a deer in the headlights when it comes to why these things matter.
WaveRider
suboptimal wrote:

The inverted phase thing hasn't arisen as an issue for me so far. I'm pretty much a deer in the headlights when it comes to why these things matter.


Thanks, bro. I am like you, in fact I don't even know if it matters, it just sounded kind of weird, I am afraid that the signal (or some of) would be canceled out if I sum that in my mixer. Just weird that it's 2 attenuated signals with inverted phases and all. I don't get it. Maybe it has its uses.
felix le chat
WaveRider wrote:

are you using:
1/4 to 1/8 adapters?
1/4 to 1/8 cables?

I personally first tried to use some 1/8 to 1/4 adapters for plugging the modular to mixers, audio interfaces, etc that all have 1/4 inputs, but the connection was not solid. I could not find an adapter that works with my patch cables (Doepfer and Ad Inifinitum) as they are too thin and often come out of the adapter.

Here in Europe those mini-jacks are often referred to as "3.5mm", but as 1 inch = 2.54cm then 1/8 inch = 3.175mm (thinner than 3.5mm). All the adapters I found should work with 3.5mm jacks but not with 3.175.

I finally soldered some custom cables as 1/4 to 1/8 cables are difficult to find commercially (Schneidersladen have some but they are pretty long).

Regards
Flc
zdarma
I use these 1/4 to 1/8 cables that i got at Schneiders coming out of the modular and into my mixer line input. The signal is pretty hot!

http://tinyurl.com/399s7an
rattlework
I'm using 1/4 to 1/8 adapters by Ad Inifinitum with Doepfer cables straight to a mixer. The cables and adapters are pretty light weight so if they are not moved around they work fine.
phase ghost
Output I use $3 1/8 to 1/4 radio shack cables. They sound good, no feedback or sound issues. I've never used input, but I imagine I would use the same cables.
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