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Custom eurorack synth voice concept. Modular Synthesizers
Old 18th October 2017
  #1
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Custom eurorack synth voice concept.

I have seen a bit of Mini Moog Model D hype around these days. I don't have one, but I have a Creamware Minimax and I absolutely love the thick modulated leads from it. It has a layout very similar to a Mini Moog. So, that out of the way, it got me thinking about going toward that same idea with three of my favorite Osc's. I imagine several of you will have your own personal favorites, but you really do need one with 'sync in'. Part of the real charm is being able to pull them in and out of sync in a real usable performance aspect and of course normaling the V/Oct and PWM make sense too. Signal flow moves from left to right. Inserting a plug into either V/Oct or PWM breaks the normaled signal. Additional signal buffering for the V/Oct insures accuracy. The Sync has been a little bit of fun so far. I have quick latching push buttons in the center of OSC 2&3 and I am playing around with phasing the saw waveform for the use of Sync between those last two. Nice results so far I must say. Other features are obvious quick waveform switches that output to nice VTL5C3/2 Vactrols and then final mixed out. Mute and adjust each OSC output. This version includes much needed bufferred mult outs of pre and post-VCA and also CV control over octaves. My own personal taste, but those last few pieces could be custom spec'd to fit. It is now up to 48HP in size!

So in summary, I believe this gives you nice performance features and you still have access to all the usual power under the hood. But you will pay in cost for something in this direction. Figure I would need to charge at around $1K for these, so imagine that will not be a fast moving item, but fun to give it a go and at the very least a think about.

Give it some thought as to what OSC's you would choose for an ultimate three voice. Maybe not even all the same type? Maybe some modded stages in between? Too many possibilities. Of course you can manually patch everything to get there, but it becomes more efficient to just patch three cords and go, right?

Big thanks to WMD and SSF for aiding me in this venture.




Old 18th October 2017
  #2
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It's a very cool idea, no doubt. Trouble is that there's a lot of competition in Euro regarding full voices, plus since you're gunning for Moog, it's going to be hard for someone to justify dropping a grand on this when the Behringer is supposed to come out soon, and initial demos are making it sound pretty close to a Model D. Even just doing three oscillators in one module, you'd be butting heads with Instruo's Troika. While that doesn't have a lot of the CV ability of yours, it's less than half the cost, and much few HP. Good luck to you either way you go, but I think this is going to be a tough sell.
Old 18th October 2017
  #3
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Im with Derp on this one . Tough sell at $1k . It does look pretty sexy , but a grand is a lot to drop on one particular flavour of oscillator .

Ultimate 3 oscillator - 3 x Dreadbox Omikrons . Which would effectively give you 6 voices . If only it had a dedicated control for PW....
Old 18th October 2017
  #4
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Not sure I made it clear that this is just a personal concept for a synth voice. I would not be making these in any kind of quantity. It's more of question to all of you as to what Oscillators you guys would match up for a custom voice.

Yes, once the Behringer model D comes out, you should be able to pick up one for $100.00 used. No doubt there, but I am interested in a unique approach to a synth voice. What would you choose if money was not a factor, within $1K or so?
Old 18th October 2017
  #5
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For all of one type...

3 Dreadbox Omikrons
3 Vermona Unicycles - would love to see some knobs for FM / PWM amount
3 Omsonic RNO VCOs
Old 18th October 2017
  #6
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My current analog VCO section is 2 Dixies and an STO. I've been interested in a Spectrum though. I love SSF and I'd like to get a couple saw core VCOs to compliment the tri cores I already have. I'm also excited to see what the new SSF through zero VCO turns out like. I like the Rubicon but it's pretty huge for a single analog VCO. Still I imagine three Rubicon's all FMing each other would be amazing.
Old 18th October 2017
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by subdo View Post
Still I imagine three Rubicon's all FMing each other would be amazing.
Ooohh that sounds interesting! I modded one a while back with a ten turn pot. Here is the link for that. MUFF WIGGLER :: View topic - TEN TURN RUBICON

The FM'ing sounds VERY cool. Great ideas!




Old 19th October 2017
  #8
3 Furthrrrr Generators.
Old 19th October 2017
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slaughtrhaus View Post
3 Furthrrrr Generators.
That is a possibility too. Three of them makes 90 HP for just the modules. If you wanted to add to it in a standard 104 HP rack that would only give you an additional 14HP to work with. Could you use two and something else? I like the sync on these!
Old 19th October 2017
  #10
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Originally Posted by DSC View Post
That is a possibility too. Three of them makes 90 HP for just the modules. If you wanted to add to it in a standard 104 HP rack that would only give you an additional 14HP to work with. Could you use two and something else? I like the sync on these!
You could just use 2 and still have more oscillators than a minimoog. Each side (carrier and mod) of the FG tracks accurately and independently so 2 of them would be 4 fatty mcfatfat oscillators.
Old 19th October 2017
  #11
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I find that most of the all in one voice modules seem to lack the full functionality of individual modules. A 3 VCO module that's all interested me is the Living VCO. When I first got my STO, I paired it up with the DPO and standard OSC>Filter>VCA thing with it. It was huge sounding but, in modular it's really not my thing.
Old 19th October 2017
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slaughtrhaus View Post
You could just use 2 and still have more oscillators than a minimoog. Each side (carrier and mod) of the FG tracks accurately and independently so 2 of them would be 4 fatty mcfatfat oscillators.
Alright, I am liking that idea too. I will have to give that one some thought. I am thinking one more OSC to add to it, so you could pull all sources to sync and then with a switch, turn them all loose that would sound pretty interesting. Do you have one of these? Curious to how you use it.
Old 19th October 2017
  #13
Quote:
Originally Posted by DSC View Post
Alright, I am liking that idea too. I will have to give that one some thought. I am thinking one more OSC to add to it, so you could pull all sources to sync and then with a switch, turn them all loose that would sound pretty interesting. Do you have one of these? Curious to how you use it.
Yes, I am a proud owner! Sometimes I use each side as an independent osc and other times do modulation with the right one. It's cool to run a bunch of the waveforms out through different filter/env/fx chains too, especially with 2 different patterns driving each side. You can pretty much make a whole track with it if you are clever.
Old 19th October 2017
  #14
i see two interesting directions,

one is east coastish, saw core, minimooguish thing with three classic oscillators that are lively organic like great vintage designs, and layer/detune well. sync, pwm and other usual stuff there too. in this vein the nicest ive heard live is Dreadbox Omikron. it surpassed AJH too, which to me sounded more fizzy bright as in "modern". also like the sound of Omsonic RNO. very Rolandy if little cleaner. its got subosc and gorgeous pwm on board.

however, for a trio osc, dreadbox isnt suitable unless you are going two pairs and thats a hp hog. RNO even bigger if going three. i suppose for space saving one could get three of the single osc from Dreadbox blk and white line, but they are quite underfeatured, stripped down. which somewhat defeats the purpose.


in west coast domain, where more precision is required for fm pairings etc, and triangle core designs preffered for cleaner sines etc,,i like my Endrophin FG for classic 259ish theme with a twist. again i think putting two together is overkill. id rather pair if with either 110-4 or Dixie if i apsolutely needed three.

then, J3RK 258J design based more or less on Buchla 258 is really interesting. it has beautiful rich linear fm, but overall sounds more raw and vintage than any of the current complex oscillators. my favorite bar none. not dissimilar to old M15. i picked FG as most complementary to its in general colour. since one can buy a single osc pcb, 258J a nice candidate for a triplet design , tho it would be a very deep module, as its all thru hole goodness.

finally A110-4 a sine core osc, is small, and good candidate for getting three together in manner like the Spectrums posted above. they need some additional vcas, and most importantly multiturn pots. maybe an lfo range swithc on one of them. that would be a nice custom design indeed. think i even discussed doing something like that for a pair of them with the OP at one point in the past.


in digital domain, with wavetables, tzfm etc its much simpler - you just buy a Synthtech E370. done.
Old 19th October 2017
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord View Post

J3RK 258J design based more or less on Buchla 258 is really interesting. it has beautiful rich linear fm, but overall sounds more raw and vintage than any of the current complex oscillators. my favorite bar none. not dissimilar to old M15. i picked FG as most complementary to its in general colour. since one can buy a single osc pcb, 258J a nice candidate for a triplet design , tho it would be a very deep module, as its all thru hole goodness.
Just had a listen to the J3RK 258 , sounds fantastic . Whats the tracking like on it ?
Old 19th October 2017
  #16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brickman View Post
Just had a listen to the J3RK 258 , sounds fantastic . Whats the tracking like on it ?
i can usually get 4, sometimes 5 octaves.

Old 19th October 2017
  #17
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That good enough ! Thanks
Old 19th October 2017
  #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord View Post
i can usually get 4, sometimes 5 octaves.
So, I've never tried to test this on any oscillator. I wouldn't really know how except use my ears or a tuner. I suppose I could learn how to do it with a multimeter too but the point is I don't care. It's so rare for me to go more than one octave away from any starting point ever. Nearly any oscillator tracks that far...
Old 19th October 2017
  #19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brickman View Post
That good enough ! Thanks
i thought of it again, and now i remembered, yes i can get 5 octaves with help of expert sleepers, as it has autocalibration and calculates a slightly skewed cv function to compensate for offsets in high range. which is in nature of almost all vcos in their natural form.

it basically plays a few notes out, and "listens" to the vco output, and re-calculates new function (with straight linear being ideal reference) to compensate for any anomalies.


its great as ive managed to force some designs that really dont track - to track, if in limited range. like maths for example.


@ slaughtrhaus : i always get linearity (v/oct) in nice ballpark first just by listening, and do fine tuning via tuner. of course, there is the question of how accurate the input cv signal is, if 5v is really 5v etc - a multimeter can serve there well if dealing with analog voltage sources. however, i usually input stuff from daw/es i.e. a digital source that is very precise so never had the need to use the multimeter.
Old 19th October 2017
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord View Post
i see two interesting directions,

one is east coastish, saw core, minimooguish thing with three classic oscillators that are lively organic like great vintage designs, and layer/detune well. sync, pwm and other usual stuff there too. in this vein the nicest ive heard live is Dreadbox Omikron. it surpassed AJH too, which to me sounded more fizzy bright as in "modern". also like the sound of Omsonic RNO. very Rolandy if little cleaner. its got subosc and gorgeous pwm on board.

however, for a trio osc, dreadbox isnt suitable unless you are going two pairs and thats a hp hog. RNO even bigger if going three. i suppose for space saving one could get three of the single osc from Dreadbox blk and white line, but they are quite underfeatured, stripped down. which somewhat defeats the purpose.


in west coast domain, where more precision is required for fm pairings etc, and triangle core designs preffered for cleaner sines etc,,i like my Endrophin FG for classic 259ish theme with a twist. again i think putting two together is overkill. id rather pair if with either 110-4 or Dixie if i apsolutely needed three.

then, J3RK 258J design based more or less on Buchla 258 is really interesting. it has beautiful rich linear fm, but overall sounds more raw and vintage than any of the current complex oscillators. my favorite bar none. not dissimilar to old M15. i picked FG as most complementary to its in general colour. since one can buy a single osc pcb, 258J a nice candidate for a triplet design , tho it would be a very deep module, as its all thru hole goodness.

finally A110-4 a sine core osc, is small, and good candidate for getting three together in manner like the Spectrums posted above. they need some additional vcas, and most importantly multiturn pots. maybe an lfo range swithc on one of them. that would be a nice custom design indeed. think i even discussed doing something like that for a pair of them with the OP at one point in the past.


in digital domain, with wavetables, tzfm etc its much simpler - you just buy a Synthtech E370. done.

Excellent input. I'm off to go research.
Old 19th October 2017
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord View Post
i thought of it again, and now i remembered, yes i can get 5 octaves with help of expert sleepers, as it has autocalibration and calculates a slightly skewed cv function to compensate for offsets in high range. which is in nature of almost all vcos in their natural form.

it basically plays a few notes out, and "listens" to the vco output, and re-calculates new function (with straight linear being ideal reference) to compensate for any anomalies.
Cheers Clusterchord . ES-8 is on the to-buy list .
Old 20th October 2017
  #22
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In case it was missed above, just thought I'd mention the Haible Living VCOs again. Supposedly can track up to 8 octaves. If I were on the hunt for a 3 oscillator setup, it would be one of my first choices. It sounds glorious.
Old 20th October 2017
  #23
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Just my two cents to the OP: I would definitely consider the module for a grand. It all depends on what it sounds like though.
Old 3rd March 2019
  #24
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Ok, the next one I am working on is the Quad Octoginta II. Four CEM3340 Oscillators run through four YuSynth wavefolders and then put through the four poles of a joystick and then to several outputs. I'm hoping to finish this one in the next couple of months. 70HP!!! This sucka is huge! Curious to all ideas and reactions!! What do you like, don't like, would add, take away....

Old 4th March 2019
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSC View Post
Ok, the next one I am working on is the Quad Octoginta II. Four CEM3340 Oscillators run through four YuSynth wavefolders and then put through the four poles of a joystick and then to several outputs. I'm hoping to finish this one in the next couple of months. 70HP!!! This sucka is huge! Curious to all ideas and reactions!! What do you like, don't like, would add, take away....

Good idea with the CEM's. I've got four EM3340's in my system currently and will have two more when Pro One comes out. Very brutish, powerful, and cheap. The wavefolder per oscillator idea is intriguing. Will there be CV control as well for the joystick?
Old 4th March 2019
  #26
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Originally Posted by Derp View Post
Will there be CV control as well for the joystick?
That's an interesting idea. I need to think on exactly how I would do that. Maybe either or? Or both at the same time? Have each pole of the joystick have in-line CV jacks that would either be normaled to a steady voltage or whatever CV you would insert.

That way you could use an external CV to control one axis and manually control the other at the same time? That sounds like a pretty good idea. Thank you!
Old 4th March 2019
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSC View Post
That's an interesting idea. I need to think on exactly how I would do that. Maybe either or? Or both at the same time? Have each pole of the joystick have in-line CV jacks that would either be normaled to a steady voltage or whatever CV you would insert.

That way you could use an external CV to control one axis and manually control the other at the same time? That sounds like a pretty good idea. Thank you!
Yeah, I get where you're going with the performance aspect of the joystick to make it a little vector-ish, but I'm just thinking how cool it would be to have those controls under the command of like a Complex Envelope, Wogglebug, PEG, or Stages.
Old 16th April 2019
  #28
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Ok, finally got this wrapped up! Made a few changes from the rough drawing above. Basic specs are, 4 CEM3340's going into 4 YuSynth wavefolders then output to a four pole joystick. I decided that CV over the 'Range' parameter yielded the best bang for buck as far as CV control. Really sounds like an OBX-a on crack!!! I have a special spot I am going to put this monster. I will post pics when I get it installed! Final size 72HP!!! Ouch.
More info here: Quad Octoginta II | Million Machine March


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