New Open Source Modular Synthesizer For Pure Data

Developer Johan Eriksson has introduced Automatonism – a free software modular synthesizer, featuring 67 modules, dynamic preset management and advanced parameter mapping, all on an open source platform.

Automatonism runs in Pure Data, making it compatible with all major operating systems.

Eriksson has also released several tutorials, embedded below, that demonstrate how to get started:

How to make a subtractive synthesizer:

How to make a ‘West Coast’ synth patch:

Wording with clocks and rhythms:

Eriksson has also released an album of music, maked with Automatonism, that demonstrates its capabilities:

Details on Automatonism are available at the project site.

21 thoughts on “New Open Source Modular Synthesizer For Pure Data

  1. This program is a bit odd and not immediately accessible. You have to dig a little to get it going. But once you get rolling it is pretty darn cool. The compliment of modules is quite large and it lends itself to “West-Coast” style analog synthesis models. The sound quality is okay – not great, but okay. And you can certainly get some wonderful, complex noises out of it. One thing is certain …ya just can’t beat the price. Imagine something like a Serge Modular with an almost unlimited array of modules plus the ability to create pre-sets. Then imagine it FOR FREE.
    One thing though: I personally do not like the graphics. The connections are tiny and obscure and there does not seem to be any logic behind where the module inputs and outputs are located. But I guess that is the kind of thing you just have to get used to.

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    1. The graphics are just PureData’s default GUI. It may be possible to modify the GUI with plugins, though it’s not very straight forward since Pd’s GUI uses a rather obscure programming language.

      But the inputs and outputs seem to be laid out inputs on top, outputs on bottom. Is there any more logic to it needed, or is the issue that not all the modules actually separate the inputs and outputs like that?

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  2. “Maked” is not a word. And I’m sorry to diss this, as its free, but it really doesn’t sound good. Why is it that everyone making west coast software can offer great ideas, but it sounds poor. Being free or “modular” doesn’t matter if it sounds bad. And if someone doesn’t realize “maked” isn’t a word… Lol

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    1. I do know what you mean, but anything to broaden my sonic palette has to be a good thing! I do a bit of sound design and things with unusual, raw or glitchy sounds are invariably useful – sound making tools most certainly don’t have to be musical, or even pleasing to the ear, as it really does depend on what you’re trying to achieve.
      Also, i’m guessing that english isn’t the Developer’s first language, so cut him some slack!

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    2. I found maked in the OED, in the 1913 Websters, and in contemporary dictionaries. It’s the simple past tense and past participle of make. It’s been in use for centuries. It’s a valid English word, although a bit archaic.

      1828 edition of The ancient English Romance of Havelok the Dane:

      At the beginning of ure tale
      Fil me a cup of ful god ale.
      Here y schal beginnen a rym,
      Krist us yeve wel god fyn!
      The rym is maked of Havelok,
      A stalworthi man in a flok;
      He was the stalworthest man at nede,
      That may riden on ani stede.

      The 1823 “Young Woman’s Companion, a complete Guide to being a Pleasing Companion, a Respectable Mother, and a Useful Member of Society” gives instruction in proper grammar and punctuation. In discussing the punctuative mark the Obelisk it reads:

      An Obelisk, which is maked thus †, and Parallels thus ||, together with the letters of the alphabet, and figures, are used as references in the margin.

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      1. Lol And the lesson here? Before ragging on someone for their use of grammar on the Internet use that wonderful feature called Google to ensure it is not you who is in fact the jackass. Or just keep it to yourself.

        Oh wait should it be whom? Oh crap! I gotta get to Google…

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    1. It’s far better than ms-dos, because its not discontinued!

      PureData is a programming language for interactive music/video, akin to CP/M which was the programming language of MS-DOS, which maked Microsoft. Similarly PureData gave us Max/MSP and Max for Live, which maked so many cool modules and other forms of artificial life.

      But wait, there’s more: Pd is designed for LIVE collaboration across the Internet, allowing musicians around the world to make music together in real time. So all of you saying that Automatonism doesn’t sound good can get together, and maked better (Na, na-na, na-na-na-naaaa).

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  3. To all those questioning pure data’s gui, I must tell you that there is a new pd distribution called purr-data that addresses a lot of user interface issues and bridges the gap between pure-data and max. You can find it here : https://git.purrdata.net/jwilkes/purr-data
    Purr-data supports zooming and theming so you can have a lot better looking widgets to fiddle with. automatonism runs fine in purr data so there you have it. An interesting and free modular emulator. Also you can use pure data’s object and intermix them with automatonism objects so for pure data users it is really useful and powerful. I am in no way affiliated with automatonism or pure -data, I just like those programs a lot. I am a max/ max4live user too and I am a max4cats oscillot user and it has its shortcomings despite being a commercial program.

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