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Showing posts from January, 2012

Eurorack Modular Guitar Filter Fuzz LFO

I love the Eurorack DIY scene.
Although there are a lot of video's without any clear explanation, some video's are simply amazing.
Youtube user mmdroid has put guitar-strings in his Eurorack. Electric guitar-strings use the principle of direct electromagnetic induction to convert vibrations of its metal strings into electric audio signals.

It looks like 2 Dual-Coil pickups were used in this project. Double-coiled or "humbucker" pickups were invented as a way to reduce or counter the unwanted ambient hum sounds.  Humbuckers have two coils of opposite magnetic and electric polarity.  This means that electromagnetic noise hitting both coils should cancel itself out.
Video: 19zoll Gitarre

" modular guitar filter fuzz lfo "
Uploaded by YouTube user mmdroid

Video Synthesis - A-136 Solarization Tests

Besides for audio, some Doepfer (and other (analog modular) synthesizer modules can be used for other purposes too.
For example this A-136 Distortion/Waveshaper in combination with an LZX analogue modular video synthesizer.

LZX Visionary (by LZX Industies) is a line of EuroRack format synthesizer modules designed for creating and manipulating video and images.
Their range consists of 9 different modules so far: a Color Video Encoder, Video Sync Generator, Video Waveform Generator, Triple Video Fader & Key Generator, Video Blending Matrix, Voltage Interface I, Video Ramps, Triple Video Processor and a Voltage Bridge.

It looks like a very versatile range of products that will probably make a lot of video-editors happy.
For modular synth-geeks the layout, functions etc. looks quite familiar with what we do, and i like the idea of video-mixing, LFO-controlled color-swapping, and adding other effects to video with Eurorack modules.
The possibility of adding synthesizer modules that wer…

A-143-2 Quad ADSR - Power to the Quads!

Good value-for-money and serious rackspace-savers are Doepfer's Quad modules.
These modules offer four (-duh-) identical but individual modulation sources in one module.

My A-143-2 Quad ADSR is at the heart of my A-100 system.
With 4 envelope generators in one this is a very powerful module, and this is where the 3 individual gate outputs from my MAQ 16/3 come together.
Also see THIS post.

The Gate inputs of the units 2, 3 and 4 are normalled to the Gate input of unit 1, so Gate input 1 is connected to the switching contacts of the Gate input sockets fom submodule 2, 3 and 4 if no other input is connected.
With only one Gate signal applied to Gate input 1, it can be used to trigger all four sub-modules simultaneously.
A switch for each individual channel is available for switching between high, low and medium ranges.

All 4 sub-units have additional input sockets for Re-Trigger, but the re-trigger behaviour of the A-143-2 is slightly different compared to other envelope generators;

Controlling the Doepfer Modular Synthesizer with a Wiimote

I blogged about the Doepfer Mogli and gesture control earlier on this blog, but in 2007 it was already possible to control your A-100 with a Nintendo Wii Remote (or Wiimote) controller.

Video: Controlling Doepfer modular synth with a Wiimote

" This video is about controlling a modular synth with Nintendo's wiimote gamepad, using Doepfer A-100, Doepfer MCV24, Wiimote and computer.
Softwares used are Bluesoleil, Glovepie and Midi-ox.
This video is not an artistic demonstration but a technical explanation of this system (that can be used for making music ofc). "
Uploaded on Sept. 12, 2007 by YouTube user DamagedMeat

The Doepfer Mogli and Gesture Control

In 1993 Doepfer presented the Mogli MIDI Data Glove Controller, an alternative controller device that was based on a Nintendo Power Glove controller.
It had traditional NES controller buttons on the forearm as well as a program button and buttons labeled 0-9.

There were two ultrasonic speakers (transmitters) in the glove and you had to put three ultrasonic microphones (receivers) around your TV monitor.
The ultrasonic speakers took turns transmitting a short burst (a few pulses) of 40 kHz sound and the system measured the time it took for the sound to reach the microphones.
A triangulation calculation was performed to determine the X, Y, Z location of each of the two speakers, which specified the yaw and roll of the hand.
It could also sense the bend of the individual fingers, the only dimension it couldn't calculate was the pitch of the hand, since the hand can pitch without moving the location of the two ultrasonic speakers.

The Power Glove was originally released in 1989 and wa…

SiteTip VI : Vintage Synth Explorer

Okay, many of you already know this site, and i linked to it many times.
If you want to know everything about classic synthesizers, you should really check out before you look any further.

For over 15 years (since 1996) the Vintage Synth Explorer has been providing a fast and easy way to learn about vintage synthesizers.

Their library contains over 750 synths, samplers and drum machines, and is updated regularly.
They claim to be the world's leading synthesizer resource and have grown to include modern digital synthesizers, analog emulators, soft-synths, plug-ins, and other forms of electronic musical instruments.

On this site you will find detailed descriptions and reviews, pictures, audio and video samples, technical specifications, lists of famous users, links and more!

Very nice are also the site's Interactive Timeline of Synthesizer history, that shows a timeline together with synths ordered by production-date and their Glossary of synthesizer t…

A-165 Dual Trigger Modifier

The A-165 Dual Trigger Modifier contains two separate and identical trigger modifiers for use with logical / digital levels.
In fact it works pretty similar to the A-175 Dual Voltage Converter, only this module works on Gates, Clock and Triggers.

Each half of this module enables signals, generated by the A-100, to communicate with other instruments (such as an external sequencer), or is simply used for reversing a trigger's polarity.
Whatever signal is patched into the input is inverted by the module, and fed out of the Inv. Out (inverted output) socket.
At the same time, a short trigger signal (of roughly 50 ms) is generated every time an edge of the trigger pulse is sensed (negative as well as positive).
This trigger signal is available at the +/- output.
Two LEDs show the level of signal available at the two outputs.

Because the original and inverted trigger signal are often both needed at the same time, it is possible to use these two inputs as a mini-multiple - using one of …

Booktip XII - How To Make A Noise by Simon Cann

Simon Cann is a musician and writer based in London. He is the author of a range of music-related and music business-related books and published this book in 2005. (my copy is the revised 2007 edition)
The book is " a comprehensive, practical guide to sound design and synthesizer programming techniques using subtractive (analog) synthesis, frequency modulation synthesis, additive synthesis, wave-sequencing, and sample-based synthesis. "
Every function of a synthesizer gets discussed in this 278-page book, and the author shows practical uses for these building-blocks to make/recreate sounds. The book is illustrated with many pictures and screen-shots from (software) synthesizers that i had/have never heard of, and that might be the only 'problem' that i have with this book.
In my opinion this book is a bit too much focused on Software synths and some of the sounds can only be created with these soft-synths. For analog purists (like me) this can be a bit of a trouble, but …

Random Video: Doepfer A-100 Modular Madness 1 by Frequenzverschiebung

A new A-100 video that caught my eye today is this next one by YouTube user Frequenzverschiebung, simply called 'Doepfer A-100 Modular Madness 1'

" Random Doepfer A-100 patch, all movement controlled by two LFO modules (A-145, A-146) and noise, S&H (A-118, A-148), SSM2044 filter (A-105), ring mod (A-114), 2 VCO (A-110) and more.
Additional delay and reverb with software plugins ValhallaÜberMod and ValhallaRoom. "

Subscribe to his YouTube channel at

Filters VI: A-122 24 dB Low Pass Filter VCF3

Module A-122 (VCF 3) is a voltage-controlled low-pass filter, which's circuitry uses a Curtis Electromusic chip (CEM3320), and sounds very similar to the classic Oberheim filter that was used in the OB8, OBX-a and Xpander synthesizers.
(and also in the Sequential Circuits Prophet 5 and Roland SH-101)

Because of its different circuitry and controls, the A-122 has a considerably smooth but thin sound, different like the A-120 'Moog-like' filter and other Doepfer filters.
Also the way the resonance behaves is quite different.

Luckily this module does have Voltage Controlled resonance that cannot only be controlled manually, but by voltages as well, right up to self-oscillation.
In this case, the filter behaves like a sine wave oscillator.
In this oscillation mode, you can simply use the FCV1 input to contol the pitch because it also works on the 1V/ octave rule, like regular VCOs.

I love the sound of it, you can use it to make fat and smooth basses up to the squelchier TB-303…

DIY Modular Case Ideas

There are many ways to house your (eurorack) modular synth, i wrote about the pre-manufactured options from Doepfer earlier, find that post HERE, but of course you can also try to build you own case.
There are many ways to make your own A-100/Eurorack case if you start out with just the basic rails and busboard, and you can make it as cheap or expensive as you can.

Check out a few ideas;
Wooden cabinets and side-panels are still very popular amongst (modular) synth enthusiasts.
These simple case standards for the pre-manufactured LC9 cases are very simple, and can be sooo useful Also check out the other great modular pictures on his site.
Matthew Goike (@Goiks) also has some nice wooden cabinets on display and for sale on his website:

...or do what Stretta did (or rather what his brother did), make a high-end wood/brushed aluminium cabinet with integrated LED-lights and some …