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Teenage Engineering’s Pocket Operator: New “Poor Man’s Modular” Modular Synthesizers
Old 4 weeks ago
  #61
Probably because they’ve cut the features to the bone to keep it cheap.
It’s also a sort of nod towards the Arp 2600, which is an all time classic.
The thing about modular is it is.....modular.
It doesn’t stop them from offering a more fully featured oscillator later on, or a headphone amp.
Midi is less useful in a monophonic modular synth. Cv and gate is definately the way to go.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
Probably because they’ve cut the features to the bone to keep it cheap.
It’s also a sort of nod towards the Arp 2600, which is an all time classic.
The thing about modular is it is.....modular.
It doesn’t stop them from offering a more fully featured oscillator later on, or a headphone amp.
Midi is less useful in a monophonic modular synth. Cv and gate is definately the way to go.
Can you clarify how is it a nod towards Arp 2600?

For a simple subtractive semimodular diy synth with no proper casing and limited connectivity, it’s also not exactly cheap.

It does look very cool, I’ll give it that.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #63
Subtractive modular or semi-modular synth with one low pass filter and speakers.
Arp also supplied a keyboard and a sequencer for the 2600.
It is a class of retro synths that had basic synthesis features, were portable and had included speakers, like the EMS Synthi. My Buchla 200 had two speakers and a touch keyboard.
It's a nod back to the first synthesisers - before the Mini-Moog did away with patch cables and speakers.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #64
Gear Head
 

Taking a deep look at the user manual pdf that TE provide on their site..

The #16 keyboard doesn't look like it can be powered externally, batteries only. And each time you want to change them you'll need to take the whole thing apart, unscrewing and rescrewing the top and bottom. The 4 AAs will probably last a while, but still, no easy access a la pocket operator.

In the #170 we got the same problem, only this time around the batteries to change aren't 4 but 12, still 4 below the keyboard bit but 8 more that power the rest of the synth. And again, you'll need to take the whole thing apart to change them (I guess this will be even more cumbersome if the batteries drain at different rates, between keyboard and synthesizer).

The #400 seems to be powered by just 8 batteries, only this time you can access them without taking the whole thing apart! In fact, the 400 is the only one out of the three with a fully sealed enclosure for the modules.

Let's talk about the modules: they only get very brief, general explanations about what each of them can do. No technical details, no patch point overview, nothing. I hope TE give us more details about what the modules' capabilities, either updating this pdf or with proper instructions once you receive your unit. Otherwise.. I'm worried. I mean, right in this manual it says that each module has it's own box, but the box contents consist only of the module itself, 8 screws (4 attach from the outside and 4 from the inside) and 4 screw leads. Not good.

I'm forced to look at the patch examples to try and deduce what each input and output on these modules do the words on the faceplate are a bit too vague..

Seems like the filter has got 2 cv inputs, and they both control the cutoff frequency at the same time. You could easily set up something like 2 LFOs or an LFO and an envelope modulating the filter at the same time.
All these VCOs have multiple outputs for their single waves, so you won't be needing external mults. In fact, most of these modules have 2 or 3 of the same output, which is handy.
Some patch points and knobs I still don't understand. Like the ones on the VCOs labelled as "control". Control of what? I'm guessing it's pitch CV, but then why have a separate input for pitch CV coming from a keyboard? Why label them differently? Am I missing something?
Also, good number of cv outputs but not as many cv inputs, that's for sure. Wanna play the 3 oscillators of the 400 in unison? Well, I hope you have an external mult or of those star-shaped splitters. Or you know, this 16 keyboard which has 3 identical pitch cv outs, would you look at that.

I like the concept of these TE modulars. I just don't understand some of the choices made.. I want to like these more, but I can't right now.

I'll wait for demos
Old 4 weeks ago
  #65
Thanks.
The battery thing could be a problem.
Yeah, I’m going to wait for demos or more explanation.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #66
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ArtFluids's Avatar


The individual modules will cost between $20-$100
Old 4 weeks ago
  #67
yeah
good morning
Old 4 weeks ago
  #68
Looking good. Onboard sequencer too
Batteries look easy to change on the 400 system.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #69
All the units can be powered with a separate AC PSU (Walwart).
Just bought the keyboard sequencer.

I love the industrial design. I like the idea behind the whole system. $29 to $100 per module is killer.
There was no pre-announcement/hype. Systems were already on sale at announcement, and the first run of 400 systems were already built - the 400 system apparently sold out in one day.
The system is a basic analogue subtractive modular, without being based on anything specific, like Roland 100M, or being named or styled after anything specific, like Roland 100M.

This is everything Behringer is not.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #70
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
All the units can be powered with a separate AC PSU (Walwart).
Just bought the keyboard sequencer.

I love the industrial design. I like the idea behind the whole system. $29 to $100 per module is killer.
There was no pre-announcement/hype. Systems were already on sale at announcement, and the first run of 400 systems were already built - the 400 system apparently sold out in one day.
The system is a basic analogue subtractive modular, without being based on anything specific, like Roland 100M, or being named or styled after anything specific, like Roland 100M.

This is everything Behringer is not.
I don’t think the keyboard can be powered with a PSU.

I also don’t get your last sentence. I take it this is somehow superior to Behringer in your opinion? Nod to Arp 2600 is better than nod to Roland System 100?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #71
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
All the units can be powered with a separate AC PSU (Walwart).
Just bought the keyboard sequencer.

I love the industrial design. I like the idea behind the whole system. $29 to $100 per module is killer.
There was no pre-announcement/hype. Systems were already on sale at announcement, and the first run of 400 systems were already built - the 400 system apparently sold out in one day.
The system is a basic analogue subtractive modular, without being based on anything specific, like Roland 100M, or being named or styled after anything specific, like Roland 100M.

This is everything Behringer is not.
When TE can release a something like an 808 clone for 299.00 then they can be in the fortunate position Behringer is in now- you know, that position where they sell a ****-ton of new gear? Good position to be in.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #72
Nonsense.

Vague nod is waaaay cooler than a complete clone copy, piggybacking on someone else's name and heritage.
It's like you are going out of your way to misunderstand. I said it harked back to a whole series of early synthesisers, like the Arp, the EMS and the Buchla 200, all of which had basic features, the EMS and Buchla had touchplate keyboards and sequencers, all three included speakers. Surely that is different to copying artwork, features and module names even?
But the main thing is it is OUT, one system already built and sold out. It was announced and was available on the same day. It wasn't hyped months in advance and still not available.

The Teenage Engineering system is as cheap, if not cheaper, and can be bought now - delivery in 4 weeks.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #73
Quote:
Originally Posted by TRSC View Post
When TE can release a something like an 808 clone for 299.00 then they can be in the fortunate position Behringer is in now-
How is that superior to selling you're own modular system (not cloning Roland's) at a super low price point, delivered in your hands four weeks after announcement?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
How is that superior to selling you're own modular system (not cloning Roland's) at a super low price point, delivered in your hands four weeks after announcement?
TE make hipster stuff- you know it- everyone knows it. The TR 808 sound is legendary and timeless and used by the masses of producers and hobbyists worldwide in abundance. And here we have a company releasing an affordable clone of that drum machine-with extras the original didn't have. Have you see the demos of it? Behringer will sell a ****-ton of these easily, whether you want to admit it or not- it's gonna happen.

TE did one thing completely right- and that was the OP-1.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #75
First - the Behringer 808 has absolutely ZERO to do with the TE modular.
I mentioned the Behringer Roland clones because they were announced months and months ago, but haven't yet appeared. TE have stolen their thunder when it comes to cheap modular (as has Korg Volca).
Second - 'hipster stuff'? This is the most bizarre and wrongheaded argument ever. It's a very affordable analogue modular system. Simple as that.
It is like Doepfer but cheaper. Nothing else matters.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #76
Quote:
Originally Posted by TRSC View Post
TE did one thing completely right- and that was the OP-1.
What is 'wrong' about making a super affordable analogue, subtractive modular system and having it available four weeks after launch?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #77
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
First - the Behringer 808 has absolutely ZERO to do with the TE modular.
I mentioned the Behringer Roland clones because they were announced months and months ago, but haven't yet appeared. TE have stolen their thunder when it comes to cheap modular (as has Korg Volca).
Second - 'hipster stuff'? This is the most bizarre and wrongheaded argument ever. It's a very affordable analogue modular system. Simple as that.
It is like Doepfer but cheaper. Nothing else matters.
Did you forget that you came in bashing Behringer lol? The reality is Behringer has been releasing quality ideas for the last few years while TE gave us pocket toys and a concept of an OP-Z that took what- 4 years to materialize?

Have fun with your modular setup man, but don't think for a second that this little morsel from TE will hinder Behringer in any way, because it won't.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #78
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ArtFluids's Avatar
I know I want one but I think I'm going to wait a bit to see how they handle individual modules. I am kind of puzzled why the oscillators are separate, there's three oscillators here: saw, square, sine.
Would have been better to make a single multi-wave oscillator and put three of those in there. I'm sure it was to keep costs down but another way to keep costs down is to make fewer distinct products. A one oscillator fits all would have made more sense to me.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #79
Quote:
Originally Posted by TRSC View Post
Did you forget that you came in bashing Behringer lol?
Just pointing out some cold hard facts.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #80
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
Just pointing out some cold hard facts.
Meanwhile Behringer continues to produce more and more things that people want to actually make (and release) music with.

I have the best of what TE ever produced, 2 of 'em actually. They haven't done anything remotely as innovative as the OP-1 since.

Just pointing out some cold, hard facts
Old 4 weeks ago
  #81
First you bring a clone drum machine up then you assume people won't want to make music with the TE modular.
Lots of reaching there.
It's this simple - Korg and TE have brought very affordable modular to the market at the beginning of 2019, and without pre-announcing it at the beginning of 2018. Nothing else.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #82
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
First you bring a clone drum machine up then you assume people won't want to make music with the TE modular.
Lots of reaching there.
It's this simple - Korg and TE have brought very affordable modular to the market at the beginning of 2019, and without pre-announcing it at the beginning of 2018. Nothing else.
So what? Behringer announces a product in 2018 and delivers in 2019. TE announces a product in 2016 and delivers it over 2 years later? What is your point- that Behringer had us wait 1.5 years less? I already know that, but thanks for reminding me.

And common sense tells us that more music will be made with an 808 clone (because its loaded with new features the original didn't have) rather than a modular setup by TE that reminds one of Tonka-truck stylings.

I'm not saying TE is incapable of doing great things because the OP-1 is truly great-even now, but this modular idea is nothing that will capture the minds of the masses like Behringer's latest gear will.

Common sense man, look around- open your eyes and ears.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #83
As I said, the 808 clone has absolutely zero to do with this thread.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #84
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
As I said, the 808 clone has absolutely zero to do with this thread.
Ok, how about this? Behringer Neutron Semi-Modular Analog Synth | Sweetwater

14 x 5 star reviews. Everything they've made lately is a hit, purchased by producers and musicians. IF Behringer decided to go all-in with modular in 2019, do you think it would be any different?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #85
Again.....
Quote where I've said Behringer haven't offered cheap gear that many people happily bought.
I haven't.

I said: Behringer promised very cheap modular something like 9 months ago (along with a mountain of other clone gear) and it still hasn't been heard or made available to purchase.
In the meantime, Korg and TE announced very cheap modular synths that have already been heard and are basically ready to buy.
What's more, neither Korg nor TE copied another classic synth lock, stock and barrel in order to design and sell their cheap modular.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #86
Gear Head
 

that keyboard does look nice! might grab one some day.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #87
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Somebodyperson's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TRSC View Post
So what? Behringer announces a product in 2018 and delivers in 2019. TE announces a product in 2016 and delivers it over 2 years later? What is your point- that Behringer had us wait 1.5 years less? I already know that, but thanks for reminding me.

And common sense tells us that more music will be made with an 808 clone (because its loaded with new features the original didn't have) rather than a modular setup by TE that reminds one of Tonka-truck stylings.

I'm not saying TE is incapable of doing great things because the OP-1 is truly great-even now, but this modular idea is nothing that will capture the minds of the masses like Behringer's latest gear will.

Common sense man, look around- open your eyes and ears.
and with this, I bid a farewell to this thread
Attached Thumbnails
Teenage Engineering’s Pocket Operator: New “Poor Man’s Modular”-2rxelb.jpg  
Old 4 weeks ago
  #88
< moderator message - what a fantastic idea to troll a Teenage Engineering thread with a fight about what Behringer is, or isn't. Well... the damage has been done. carry on (and leave Behringer out of it, please) >
Old 4 weeks ago
  #89
Kja
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by TRSC View Post
Meanwhile Behringer continues to produce more and more things that people want to actually make (and release) music with.

I have the best of what TE ever produced, 2 of 'em actually. They haven't done anything remotely as innovative as the OP-1 since.

Just pointing out some cold, hard facts
Opz is the most innovative sequencer of it's kind that has been developed before, literally world's ahead of elektron, that's not innovative? It's so powerful it took them four years of development to get it right, it can run a whole studio of synth's while doing things that were just not possible before it, plus it's can sequence your show lights and your show clips.. they are about 1/10th the size the elektron as a company.. Behringer is many times over the largest instrument company besides Yamaha because they make not just musical equipment. Is really not fair to compare their output ability, and even the lowly pocket operators have been extremely innovative, maybe you confused not being something your into as being not innovative? I think they are the most innovative company it right now, they remind me of buchla how they do things and they have a sound and a soul in their stuff, I think they will be seen as the new buchla in time.. when the op1 came out everyone dead it was a toy and sounded like garbage, now everyone says how great it is, maybe you should give the new products time before making such statements?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #90
‘Troll’ is increasingly overused.
I merely pointed out two positives:
1) Building a new product with your own aesthetic.
2) Announcing it when it’s ready to buy and four weeks from delivery.
That’s all.
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