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Description

Dark Energy is a monophonic stand-alone synthesizer with USB and Midi interface. The sound generation and all modulation sources are 100% analog, only the USB/Midi interface contains digital components. Dark Energy is built into a rugged black metal case with wooden side plates. High quality potentiometers with metal shafts are used and each potentiometer is fixed to the case (no wobbly shafts and knobs). The distance between the controls is a bit wider compared to A-100 modules and knobs with vintage look are used. VCO Triangle based VCO core manual tune control (with an internal jumper the range can be set to ~ +/-1 half an octave or ~ +/-2.5 octaves) range switch -1 / 0 / +1 octave frequency range about 10Hz ... 12kHz FM (frequency modulation) control with modulation source switch (LFO1 / off / ADSR) manual pulsewidth control for rectangle waveform PWM control with modulation source switch (LFO2 / off / ADSR) waveform switch (sawtooth / off / triangle) the sum of the waveform chosen by this switch and the rectangle is fed into the VCF (to turn the rectangle off the PW control has to be set fully CCW) external CV input for VCO frequency (1V/octave) external CV input for external PWM of the rectangle internal CV input for frequency (1V/octave) connected to the CV1 output of the built-in USB/Midi interface VCF 24 dB low pass ~ 12 octaves frequency range manual frequency control tracking switch half - off - full (internally connected to the external frequency CV input of the VCO, i.e. the VCF tracks to the VCO if the switch is set to "half" or "full" position) XM: exponential FM (frequency modulation) control with modulation source switch (LFO2 / off / ADSR) LM: linear FM (frequency modulation) control to modulate the VCF by the triangle of the VCO in a linear (!) manner manual resonance control (up to self oscillation) external audio input (this signal is added to the VCO signal) external CV input for filter frequency 1V/octave tracking for usage of the VCF as a sine wave oscillator over some octaves (not as precise as the VCO and not temperature compensated, but much better than most of the other filters) VCA manual amplitude control (initial gain) AM (amplitude modulation) control with modulation source switch (LFO1 / off / ADSR) external CV input for VCA amplitude special control scale: exponential scale in the range from about -20dB to -80/90dB, linear scale from about -20dB to 0dB Remark: this special control scale results in a loudness behaviour that is a bit different from pure linear or exponential VCAs "CV clipping feature": as the amplification of the VCA ranges from 0 to 1 only, each negative CV and each positive CV that corresponds to an amplification beyond 1 will cause kind of control voltage clipping The control input of the VCA has been designed in a way so that with the AM control fully clockwise even with the internal AM sources (ADSR, LFO1) CV clipping occurs as soon as the position of the AM control is about 7 or more. To obtain e.g. the usual ADSR loudness contour the AM control should be about 7 while the initial gain (A) is normally set to zero. If AM is fully CW kind of trapezoid envelope is used to the loudness contour. Same applies when LFO1 is selected as AM source. In this case the initial gain control (A) is usually set to a middle position (~ 3...6) to obtain a basic loudness which is modulated into both directions by the LFO signal. LFO1 and LFO2 manual frequency control waveform switch (triangle / off / rectangle) range switch (low, audio, medium) LED display (dual green/red color for positive/negative share of the signal) the LFO1 signal is available as an additional socket (to use the LFO1 signal for external modules) an internal jumper can be used to select between the LFO1 signal or the inverted LFO1 signal ADSR manual controls for Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release range switch (long, short, medium) blue LED display ADSR signal is available as an additional socket (to use the ADSR signal for external modules) External Gate input (normalled via switching contact of the socket to the Gate output of the built-in USB/Midi interface) USB/Midi-Interface Midi channel and reference note are adjusted by means of a learn button and LED at the rear panel The interface generates the gate signal that controls the envelope generator and three analog control voltages: CV1 is used to control the pitch of the VCO, CV2 the VCF frequency (free assignable Midi controller) and CV3 is available as an additional socket at the rear panel (controlled by volume/velocity). It can be patched e.g. to the VCA control input. The threes CVs and the gate signal are also available at the rear panel as jack sockets cascading of several units via internal Midi Out/Midi In connection, because of shortage of space the unit has no Midi Out socket available this connection has to be established internally, for this the metal case has a hole on both sides so that the Midi Out/In connection can be made via this hole provided that both units are mounted to one another, the Midi Out has Midi Thru function with one exception: the signal does not include the Midi note messages that have been processed already, consequently polyphonic cascading (all daisy-chained Dark Energies on the same Midi channel) or monophonic cascading (different Midi channels) is possible, it's possible to connect only the first unit to USB and pass on the Midi data via the internal Midi link to other devices) In/Outputs (all monophonic 3.5 mm jack sockets, except USB, Midi and power supply) front panel: CV In VCO frequency (1V/oct) CV In VCO pulsewidth (about 5V range for full scale) CV In VCF frequency (~ 1V/oct) CV In VCA amplitude (0...+5V) Gate In (0/+5...12V) External Audio In (typ. 1Vss without distortion) inverted LFO1 Out (~ -2.5 ... +2.5V) Envelope Out (~ 0 ... +6V) Audio Out (line output, typ. 1Vss, monophonic) rear panel: USB Midi In Learn button Gate Out (with LED for Gate display and learn function), 0/+5V CV1: controlled by Midi note messages, 1V/Oct, 0...+5V, internally connected to VCO CV input CV2: controlled by Midi pitch bend, ~ -2.5...+2.5V or ~ 0...+5V (can be selected by an internal jumper), no internal connection, the socket can be patched e.g. to the VCO or VCF CV input at the front panel CV3: controlled by Midi velocity, 0...+5V, no internal connection, the socket can be patched e.g. to the VCF or VCA CV input at the front panel CV4: controlled by Midi control change messages, free assignale controller in learn mode, no internal connection, the socket can be patched e.g. to the VCF or VCO pulsewidht input at the front panel the CV4 socket can be used also as audio output, the function of the socket can be selected by an internal jumper, factory setting is CV4, when changed to audio output no cable at the front panel is required (unless one wants to patch something), in this case CV4 is not available power supply (12...15V AC, min. 400mA) internal connections Midi out (pin header with 2 pins for internal routing of the Midi signal to another Dark Energy) Midi in (pin header with 2 pins for internal routing of the Midi signal from another Dark Energy) By means of this internal connections several Dark Energy devices can be daisy-chained. Only the first device has to be connected to the Midi or USB transmitter. For this purpose the side plates of the metal case are equipped with holes that allow the internal connection of 2 or more Dark Energy devices. For this the metal cases have to be mounted directly to each other without wooden sideplate between the units. If a wooden side plate is desired between the devices one has to drill a hole to enable the internal connection. Several devices can be daisy-chained multiple monophonic (i.e. each Dark Energy received at a different Midi channel) or polyphonic (i.e. all devices are adjusted to the same Midi channel). For polyphonic applications a special stack mode is available. In this mode the device in question does not transmit note messages at the Midi output that are used to generate the tone in the device. Onl

Discussions

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