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Planning a Percussion Skiff ... Modular Synthesizers
Old 12th January 2018
  #1
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Planning a Percussion Skiff ...

Mylar did it with his percussion demos / jam. So, I'm thinking about rigging up a 104hp skiff for percussion duties. Something like this ...



Branches, the Tip Top drums, and the Mutant Hot Glue, along with the 1u's would be new. Everything else, I already have and would move around. I also have a spare Peaks, but can't really fit it into the rack unless I go some other direction with a mixer. Thoughts?

Edit: Looking more closely at the TipTops, they seem kind of lame ... no CV in so they're not really any better than using a Peaks in split mode.
Old 13th January 2018
  #2
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base615's Avatar
I have a few of the TipTop modules. The one which really stands out is Hats909 and it has some nice CV options. I would really recommend Steady State Fate Entity for kick duties if you can free the HP. It’s a beast.
Old 13th January 2018
  #3
I've had and sold the Tip Top drum modules. Especially now, there are far more interesting and more flexible percussion modules.
Old 14th January 2018
  #4
Looks like a sweet drum skiff.

Quote:
Originally Posted by void23 View Post
Mutant Hot Glue
Would love to sell you mine...in Reverb store link below!
Old 14th January 2018
  #5
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I've kinda secretly always wanted a full said of Hexinverter Mutant modules. A little less since they are no longer available DIY. Ultimately I still seem pretty content with ITB drums though. Lives drum racks are just so crazy flexible.
Old 14th January 2018
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slaughtrhaus View Post
Looks like a sweet drum skiff.



Would love to sell you mine...in Reverb store link below!
If it's still around when I have funds, you have a deal ...
Old 17th January 2018
  #7
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I think a skiff dedicated to percussion is a great idea. There's a lot of really great sounding Eurorack percussive modules out there, that sound so much better than your typical electronic music percussion. I kind of want to do this as well, but I'll have to see if it makes sense for me.
Old 17th January 2018
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rids View Post
I kind of want to do this as well, but I'll have to see if it makes sense for me.
Logistically, it really doesn't make sense as there's easier/more straightforward ways of building percussion with standalone boxes or a DAW. ...but it sure is a lot of fun!
Old 17th January 2018
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by base615 View Post
I have a few of the TipTop modules. The one which really stands out is Hats909 and it has some nice CV options. I would really recommend Steady State Fate Entity for kick duties if you can free the HP. It’s a beast.
I have the Hats808 and Clap909 because trying to recreate those sounds with other modules is not easy. Kicks, snares, toms are easy enough to create with noise and your standard EG, VCO, VCFs. It is true there is not a lot to CV on the tiptops but I can get a lot of variations running them through an LPG and modulating that. Plus there are some drum sounds that I don't really want to modulate all over the place. And when I do want that Dinky's Taiko is my go to for crazy modulated drums.
Old 17th January 2018
  #10
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I'm half way through doing the same at the moment.

SSF Entity BD, two Ladik ROM Players, Basimilus Alter Iteras, Dinkys Taiko, and Pamela's NEW Workout give me a pretty flexible bunch of modular percussion without getting out of hand.

Can't recommend them highly enough.
Old 17th January 2018
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derp View Post
Logistically, it really doesn't make sense as there's easier/more straightforward ways of building percussion with standalone boxes or a DAW. ...but it sure is a lot of fun!
Fun/inspiration is the name of the game But what did you mean not making sense? Because it's expensive? Atm, I'm definitely not interested in building drums in the DAW. Standalone hardware boxes are fun, but will always have that sound of the unit, good or bad. The mix and match customizable approach of Eurorack drums is very attractive. Of course the only thing it lacks is a way to save a patch, but the sonics you can get from a lot of Eurorack far outweigh that for me.

My idea was to build a small Eurorack that I would use to mine my bitcoin gold that I come up with and sample those drums for use, later in a composition. That fun part is the whole reason I would do it too. DAW drums can be very uninspiring and doesn't have my personal stamp on the sound.
Old 18th January 2018
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by subdo View Post
I have the Hats808 and Clap909 because trying to recreate those sounds with other modules is not easy. Kicks, snares, toms are easy enough to create with noise and your standard EG, VCO, VCFs. It is true there is not a lot to CV on the tiptops but I can get a lot of variations running them through an LPG and modulating that. Plus there are some drum sounds that I don't really want to modulate all over the place. And when I do want that Dinky's Taiko is my go to for crazy modulated drums.
I agree to an extent but it depends on your workflow. If you like to jam with a bunch of different parts all playing at the same time it's difficult to free up enough modules, EGs in particular, unless you have a system of multiple Derps in size.

That's why I have percussion modules more than an inability to synthesise drums. For example, since I got the BD909 and later the Entity, I've been able to use Ripples as a filter whereas it was always stuck on kick duties before.
Old 18th January 2018
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rids View Post
Fun/inspiration is the name of the game But what did you mean not making sense? Because it's expensive? Atm, I'm definitely not interested in building drums in the DAW. Standalone hardware boxes are fun, but will always have that sound of the unit, good or bad. The mix and match customizable approach of Eurorack drums is very attractive. Of course the only thing it lacks is a way to save a patch, but the sonics you can get from a lot of Eurorack far outweigh that for me.

My idea was to build a small Eurorack that I would use to mine my bitcoin gold that I come up with and sample those drums for use, later in a composition. That fun part is the whole reason I would do it too. DAW drums can be very uninspiring and doesn't have my personal stamp on the sound.
And if you add modulation you make sounds nobody else will ever create.
Old 18th January 2018
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rids View Post
But what did you mean not making sense? Because it's expensive?
Expense is a huge part of it. You can get a pretty decent drum machine/sampler for around $300 and load whatever the hell you want in it. Assuming a hundred bucks per module (which is of course seriously low-balling as we all know), then to get a four part drum machine you need four drum modules, one mixer, and a sequencing module of some sort. That's six hundred just for a basic four-part drum machine.

Now that being said, I'm not arguing against the idea. If you've got the space and money, definitely go for it. Like you said, you can put your own stamp on it and as mutilatedlip said, modulation makes wonderful noises. Just saying that if somebody magicked a couple grand out of thin air and asked me to help them build a good working system, I'd tell them to get their drums out of a drum machine, sampler, or DAW and focus on intelligent sound design.
Old 18th January 2018
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derp View Post
Expense is a huge part of it. You can get a pretty decent drum machine/sampler for around $300 and load whatever the hell you want in it. Assuming a hundred bucks per module (which is of course seriously low-balling as we all know), then to get a four part drum machine you need four drum modules, one mixer, and a sequencing module of some sort. That's six hundred just for a basic four-part drum machine.

Now that being said, I'm not arguing against the idea. If you've got the space and money, definitely go for it. Like you said, you can put your own stamp on it and as mutilatedlip said, modulation makes wonderful noises. Just saying that if somebody magicked a couple grand out of thin air and asked me to help them build a good working system, I'd tell them to get their drums out of a drum machine, sampler, or DAW and focus on intelligent sound design.
Since I have most of the stuff for the proposed build, it’s more about building a dedicated case for workflow purposes and freeing up some room in the other racks.

I’m a big fan of the Analog Rytm, but lack of CV is starting to catch up with me. I could always get an AR Mk II with its two CV inputs, but that would be the more expensive route and less flexible in the long run.
Old 18th January 2018
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derp View Post
Expense is a huge part of it. You can get a pretty decent drum machine/sampler for around $300 and load whatever the hell you want in it. Assuming a hundred bucks per module (which is of course seriously low-balling as we all know), then to get a four part drum machine you need four drum modules, one mixer, and a sequencing module of some sort. That's six hundred just for a basic four-part drum machine.

Now that being said, I'm not arguing against the idea. If you've got the space and money, definitely go for it. Like you said, you can put your own stamp on it and as mutilatedlip said, modulation makes wonderful noises. Just saying that if somebody magicked a couple grand out of thin air and asked me to help them build a good working system, I'd tell them to get their drums out of a drum machine, sampler, or DAW and focus on intelligent sound design.
Oh totally. I thought that's what you were saying. This is all very subjective to the buyer. So even for a startup, I would have to question the buyer as to what they really want because they might be more interested in the Eurorack route, if they're so bold to go that route off the bat. But as you say, the typical guidance would be for a setup like you listed. And I wouldn't want to feel quilty from getting someone addicted to the Eurocrack

Lately, I've going the route of swapping gear so that I can get it, record with it, and then sell for other gear I want to record with. In the process I get to find out what gear works for me personally and have an idea where certain gear sits in the low end / hi end or usefulness spectrum for me personally. I kind of like doing it this way. It allows me to focus a little more and I don't really have to worry about expense so much either.
Old 18th January 2018
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rids View Post
Oh totally. I thought that's what you were saying. This is all very subjective to the buyer. So even for a startup, I would have to question the buyer as to what they really want because they might be more interested in the Eurorack route, if they're so bold to go that route off the bat.
It’s all about the sequencers in modular as far as I’m concerned. As far as actual sounds, I don’t see any reason not to use anything you have, software, hardware, samples, whatever. But the ways CV can change your sequences is really key imho. Especially when it comes to drums, it feels incrediblely pedestrian to me these days to program drums outside of modular, where I can design evolving drum sequences based on parameters I set instead of programming in some boom-bap and alternate sequences. So deliberate and boring. If I was starting over now I’d likely design a killer drum machine and put my melodic approach outside of the modular if I had to pick.
Old 18th January 2018
  #18
The main reason I have Euro drum/percussion modules is the ability to make custom sounds. I have Maschine and the sound library is huge, the sounds are fantastic (and varied), plus Maschine is easy to use. So I don't need to use Euro drum modules. But using someone else's sounds from Maschine just isn't as satisfying as making my own sounds.
In actual use I tend to make drum tracks from 75% my own sounds with a bit of help from Maschine in the mix.
Old 18th January 2018
  #19
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The Noise Engineering stuff is crazy cool.. was listening to some percussive stuff my friend did the other day, and it was all done with a BIA and a FutureRetro Transient.

Both of them got on my 'need' list.
Old 18th January 2018
  #20
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Originally Posted by biggator6 View Post
FutureRetro Transient.
Transient owner here: It sounds great, but be warned that it is a very tedious module to edit sounds on. It's like editing on an old E-Mu synth where you have one knob for every parameter, but you don't get the luxury of cursor arrows and have to click the knob through everything. Very painful editing on that one.

Back on topic-ish, I just did my first 'professional' work a few days ago where all of the drums were sounds I culled from the modular. It's the first time I've done any work where I didn't use previously existing drum samples or mangled up loops. I instead programmed the main beat in Renoise using drum samples I'd made and used the Trigger Riot (with CR as a clock) to create my own percussive loops. Turned out better than I'd expected and it's getting compliments for its drum section, so there's definitely something to the build your own drum rack thing.
Old 18th January 2018
  #21
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The idea of doing multi-voice drums in euro always leads to the desire to multi-track it for the mix.
more $$... euro, you're killing my bank account.

I'm eyeing a Praxis Snake Charmer at the moment.
maybe a nw2s, but attenuators in the eurorack before hitting my soundcard is nice - and the day I need more than 8 outs on my euro is the day I need a psych eval.... for now the sputnik 6 channel does the job.
As great as my "in the case" sound design is, it still needs to get mixed after with everything else... (eq, comp, verbs, etc..)
Old 18th January 2018
  #22
Quote:
Originally Posted by oinkbanana View Post
The idea of doing multi-voice drums in euro always leads to the desire to multi-track it for the mix.
more $$... euro, you're killing my bank account.

I'm eyeing a Praxis Snake Charmer at the moment.
maybe a nw2s, but attenuators in the eurorack before hitting my soundcard is nice - and the day I need more than 8 outs on my euro is the day I need a psych eval.... for now the sputnik 6 channel does the job.
As great as my "in the case" sound design is, it still needs to get mixed after with everything else... (eq, comp, verbs, etc..)
Something's gotta give at some point. One way or another it's all money when you get into a decent sized system. Rather than multitrack, I went with the stereo path plan and fully dove in headfirst. WMD Performance mixer, Kompressor on main bus, Vermona Twinout. It's a really nice stereo path, but it wasn't cheap. I went this way because it's the easiest setup I can imagine for playing live-2 XLRs to FOH, done.

If I was considering a studio multitrack setup I'm positive I would get a Snake Charmer (maybe 2), seems like a no-brainer. Depending on the setup, I'd get a patchbay with DB25 ins (rather than just cables with plugs) for more flexibility with outboard gear too.
Old 26th January 2018
  #23
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Just to make things more difficult for all of us:



Gotta give 2HP some credit, their modules are tiny, but damn are they cool!
Old 20th February 2018
  #25
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I get my Dial Up and One today. Can't wait to get home tonight to do some damage!
Old 20th February 2018
  #26
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Old 20th February 2018
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mutilatedlip View Post
Haven't heard them yet but who actually uses any of this sh1t?
Old 21st February 2018
  #28
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Originally Posted by mutilatedlip View Post
Jesus. Erica are killing it at the moment.

They're releasing modules faster than a Eurocrack addict can keep up with.

These things passed me by. They look great. Haven't heard them yet but who actually uses any of this sh1t?
I think they are 909 based.
Erica are usually very good, the only slight negative is that there are already a lot of 909 alternatives out there.
Old 21st February 2018
  #29
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Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
I think they are 909 based.
Erica are usually very good, the only slight negative is that there are already a lot of 909 alternatives out there.
Gotta have the uhn-tiss, right?
Old 21st February 2018
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
I think they are 909 based.
Erica are usually very good, the only slight negative is that there are already a lot of 909 alternatives out there.
Yeh, just noticed that.

Definitely a saturated market. That and the 808. I can't quite tire of the latter, however.

I'm still busy with the SSF Entity BD. Wonderfully beefy and wide-ranging module. Still not quite decided what sweet spot I like the most, though. I don't have a particular go-to sound as yet.
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