Moon Modular 5U Monster Synths At The 2017 NAMM Show

At the 2017 NAMM Show, we talked with synthesist John L Rice, who gave us an update on the 5U modular systems of Moon Modular.

Moon Modular had two new modular systems on display, and also introduced the Quad Lag Expander for their sequencing system. 

The M569LE Quad Lag Expander is a companion module to the M 569 sequencer, which expands the sequencer’s four rows with four lag voltage outputs (aka portamento). Each row has its own lag rate control, as well as switchable on/off/gated mode and switchable lag function for rising or falling edge only or both.

Here’s Rice’s video demo of the new module:

See the Moon Modular site for more information.

8 thoughts on “Moon Modular 5U Monster Synths At The 2017 NAMM Show

    1. Counter question: Why would you want a modular synth if all you want is everything that’s already covered by decades of pre-patched synths?

      1. I know your question was probably rhetorical and you may know this but for those that are wondering, in general for any format modular synth I think the main advantages are the high levels of flexibility, expandability and customization possible.

        Modular demos unfortunately often tend to be a lose/lose situation since no matter what you do, there will be people who don’t like it! 😉 If you demo something that even the least expensive keyboard synth can do by just flipping on the power switch, people will say “why would you want that? It costs more, weighs more, takes up more space, and takes longer with greater difficulty to make even a basic sound?”. And then if you demo something that a keyboard synth couldn’t easily do or couldn’t do at all, it might usually be something that is an unfamiliar sound to most people and they might respond with something like “OMG why would you want that, it sounds horrible and looks like a nightmarish mess! Why would you spend all that money and put out all that effort to FAIL?!” lol 😉

        Convention floor demos are even more difficult then what can be done in a controlled studio enviroment. Most keyboard synths have the advantage of presets, so no matter what someone might of changed, if one of the important and much loved interviewers like Synthtopia <3 walks up and says they'd like to shoot a video on what's new and what it can do, you just have to hit a button or two and amazing sounds come out! With a modular synth at a convention, it's often a struggle to balance between being ready for an interview, showing someone unfamiliar what a modular synth can do, and showing someone who is an advanced modular user the depths of possibilities with a specific module. You can set up a great patch and not change anything at all during the convention but it leaves people with a negative feeling if you have to keep telling them to not touch the patch or that you can't show them something specific. Or you can happily let people try stuff so they can become less intimidated by modulars or create a patch for someone that demos a specific function but if an interviewer suddenly walks up your system might not be ready and since they are busy folks they might not have time to wait or be able to come back later.

    2. Thanks! 🙂

      There are all kinds of great sounding eurorack demos out there though (maybe even one or two of mine? ;-). I think the main perception problem with eurorack demo “sound” is that there are many THOUSANDS of demos available now and even a reasonably determined listener might make it through 5 to 10 randomly chosen demos before giving up and if they happen to be all noise/glitch type demos then the perception tends to stick in a person’s head that that’s all eurorack can sound like.

      1. Haters gonna hate, John!

        Your demo is one of the few NAMM modular demos this year that included something that actually sounded musical.

        Not saying that there aren’t a lot of interesting Euro modules coming out – but it’s unfortunately rare to hear them demo’d in a way that’s musical.

        To be fair, a noisy show like NAMM, with random people coming in an tweaking your patches, is probably a terrible environment to try and do something that sounds good!

        Too often, though, it seems like Euro owners use the idea of ‘experimental music’ or ‘west coast synthesis’ as an excuse for sharing bad noodling. It’s not music until you apply musical judgment and throw out the experiments that don’t lead anywhere.

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