NAMM 2010 Big City Music Booth Overview

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This is an overview of the Big City Music booth at this year’s NAMM Show.

via bigcitymusic:

Here you see Eric Barbour (Metasonix), Wolfgang Michalowicz (Surfin Kangaroo) among others.

That is the new prototype digital Mellotron on top of the standard Mellotron, massive A.S. System 8500, 4ms goodies, Flight of Harmony Infernal Noise Machine, Sherman Rodec ReStyler, Dewanatron Hymnotron, Diabolical Devices modded & original gear, Ham Heart boxes, Eowave Persephone II, Metasonix D-1000 Tube Drum Machine + Eric’s new MIDI to CV and R-54 SuperModule , Signal Arts Tetra MAPS sequencer, Surfin Kangaroo Step Sequencer, Malekko modules, and last but not least, the handmade Dirty Boy pedals from Alex Saraceno.

100 Ways To Make Noise And Avoid Meeting Women

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Here’s 2:53 seconds of glorious, HD synth action, taken at the recent Trash_Audio Synth Meet 3, held Sunday, Aug 16th:

Surachai notes:

We saw the entire range, from noise boxes to full on modular systems in plenty of different formats. If it makes noise, we’re into it.

It looks like the event was a great synth meetup. Continue reading

The Synthtopia Guide To Eurorack Modular Synthesizers

Eurorack modular synthesizers have been growing in popularity over the last few years. Eurorack modular synths are relatively inexpensive, compared to larger formats, and pack a lot of functionality into a small space.

There are now over fifteen companies making Eurorack synth modules, giving Eurorack owners more options than just about any other modular synth platform.

Here’s a list of active Eurorack modular synthesizer manufacturers, along with links to recent coverage of their synths at Synthtopia:

Eurorack Synth Modular Manufacturers

  1. 4MS Pedals has moved from effects pedals into Eurorack Modules, with their Pingable Envelope Generator, Shuffling Clock Multiplier, Atoner, Swash and other modules.
  2. Abstract Data – maker of the ADE-10 Reactive Shaper module.
  3. ADDAC Systems – offers programmable modules, like the Voltage-Controlled Computer system and several stand-alone modules.
  4. ALM – creators of Pamela’s Workout and the SID Guts modules.
  5. AMSynths – a small scale, UK based, manufacturer of high quality analog synthesizer modules, as well as PCB’s for Synthesizer DIY.
  6. Analogue Systems (UK) – makes the RS line of synth modules, and unique keyboard controllers like the French Connection. Analogue Systems on Synthtopia
  7. Analogue Solutions (UK) – creators of the Concussor synth modules, along with a variety of synths and sequencers, including the Red Square, the Leipzig, the SEMblance, the TBX-303 and the Oberkorn.  Analogue Solutions on Synthtopia
  8. Atomo Labs has introduced a new line of AtomoSynth Eurorack modules.
  9. Bananalogue (USA) – makes several synth modules, including a couple of Serge-influenced modules. Their site is currently missing in action. If you’ve got additional information, leave a comment. Bananalogue on Synthtopia
  10. Blue Lantern Modules offers a small line of Eurorack modules, which currently includes the LM4250 VCF and the DIode VCF.
  11. Bubblesound (US) – makes Eurorack synth modules with original components to more accurately capture the sound of vintage gear. Their site is currently missing in action. If you’ve got additional information, leave a comment. Bubblesound on Synthtopia
  12. Circuit Abbey offers several Eurorack modules, including the Gravity Well wave warper, the Tripfire comparator and input and output modules.
  13. ControlVoltage.org – makes an analog Eurorack format VCF
  14. Cwejman (Sweden) – Cwejman makes semi-modular synthesizers and also a large variety of Eurorack synth modules. Cweman on Synthtopia
  15. Cyndustries (USA) – Cyndustries makes synth modules in Blacet, DotCom, ModCan, MOTM & Eurorack formats. Their best known modular is the Zeroscillator, a high end modular oscillator. Cyndustries on Synthtopia.
  16. Delptronics offers Eurorack synthesizer modules, effects boxes and other unique electronic musical instruments.
  17. Din Sync – makes several modules inspired by classic Roland gear.
  18. Division 6 makes a small line of modules that includes the Filtare SEIII multimode filter and some utility modules.
  19. Doepfer (Germany) – manufacturer of electronic music instruments, ranging from keyboards and MIDI controllers to complete analog modular synthesizer systems. Doepfer on Synthtopia
  20. Erthenvar has a line of utility modules, including input, output and power modules. They also carry Eurorack DIY parts, including mounting rail.
  21. Elby Designs (Australia) – makes the Panther series of Eurorack analog synthesizer modules and kits, based on Cat Girl Synth designs. Elby Designs on Synthtopia
  22. Electronic Music Works – has introduced a new line of Eurorack modules, including the Wave Composition Oscillator.
  23. Encore Electronics – makes the Universal Event Generator and a Frequency Shifter.
  24. Endorphin.es – a new Euro maker that has introduced one moduler, the Furthrrrr Generator.
  25. Eowave – makes the Titan modular system and a variety of Eurorack modules.
  26. Expert Sleepers – makes Silent Way, a suite of applications for integrating computers with modular synthesizers, and Eurorack interfaces.
  27. Flame offers Eurorack modules, in addition to other MIDI controller and electronic music instruments. Their current lineup includes the Clockwork, Tame Machine and Talking Synth modules.
  28. Flight of Harmony (USA) – currently has a small line of synth modules, including the Plague Bearer quad voltage-controlled resonant bandpass filter. Flight of Harmony on Synthtopia
  29. Future Sound Systems (UK) – Future Sound Systems makes synth modules in MOTM/Modcan/Dotcom and Eurorack formats. You can customize your modules with special panels and LED colors. Future Sound Systems on Synthtopia
  30. GorillaBox – makes a line of heavy-duty modular synth cases.
  31. Grayscale – creates alternate panels for Eurorack modules
  32. Harvestman (USA) – makes a very original line of voltage-controlled digital signal processing modules, including the Malgorithm, Zorlon Cannon, Tyme Safari and a Polivoks filter. Harvestman on Synthtopia
  33. Innerclock Systems – offers the Sync-Gen modular DAW synchronization interface.
  34. Intellijel makes some creatively designed and named modules, including hte Azimuth, Mutagen, Spock and Mind Meld.
  35. Jomox has introduced a new line of Eurorack analog drum modules
  36. Jones – makes Eurorack modules for video synthesis
  37. Kenton has introduced a new Eurorack MIDI to CV converter, the Modular Solo.
  38. Koma has introduced a small line of Euro modules, including a State Variable Filter and Tap Tempo Clock Generator.
  39. Kilpatrick Audio offers some advanced modules, including a dual VCO, Step Sequencer, Pattern Generator and MIDI Convertor.
  40. Livewire (USA) – Livewire makes a small collection of very interesting synth modules, including the Dalek Modulator, Dual Cyclotron & the Vulcan Modulator. Livewire on Synthtopia
  41. Livid Instruments has introduced Eurorack format modular MIDI controllers.
  42. Low Gain Electronics manufacturers several utility modules.
  43. LZX Industries has a line of EuroRack format synthesizer modules designed for creating and manipulating video and images, the LZX Visionary Modular Video Synthesizer.
  44. MacBeth Studio Systems has introduced their X-Series  of synth modules.
  45. Macro Machines -
  46. Makenoise (USA) – makes a small collection of synth modules, including a Quad Multi-Mode Gate, modDemod and the Format Jumbler. Makenoise on Synthtopia
  47. Malekko Heavy Industry has a broad variety of synth modules, including Eurorack Wiard modules and the B:Assmaster fuzz effect.
  48. Manhattan Analog – creators of the Mutinator, and other Euro modules.
  49. Metasonix (USA) – specializes in vacuum tube based synth modules. Metasonix on Synthtopia
  50. MFB (Germany) – makes a variety of drum synth modules in addition to standard modular synth components (VCO, VCF, sequencers). MFB also makes semi-modular and mini-synths. MFB on Synthtopia
  51. Minimal Systems – has introduced a new line of Euro modules.
  52. Modcan is best known for their large-format modules, but they’ve started release Euro format modules, too.
  53. Monorocket – makes suitcase style Eurorack modular synthesizer cases.
  54. Mungo Enterprises has introduced a small line of Eurorack modules.
  55. Noise Engineering has a new line of ‘minimal mixed signal Eurorack modules.
  56. Oakley Sound Systems is a popular source of DIY synth module designs.
  57. Pittsburgh Modular makes a broad range of modules, including an Analog Delay, Generator dual oscillator and the Timetable clock divider.
  58. Plan B (USA) – Peter Grenader’s line of synthesizer modules features a wide variety of modules, many of which are influenced by classic Buchla designs. Plan B on Synthtopia.
  59. Qu-Bit Elektronix – new Euro builder that says ‘we love open source hardware/software’!
  60. Rebel Tech – creator of the Stoicheia Euclidean Sequencer.
  61. Snazzy FX has begun offering Eurorack modules, starting with the Dreamboat dual chaotic oscillator.
  62. Somatic Circuits offers several Euro modules in its Luna Modular line, including the VC303 bassline voice module and the VEM.
  63. Sound Machines offers a small line of Eurorack modules, including the RB1robotto and RC1radiostar.
  64. Sound Modular sells cases for Eurorack modular synths.
  65. STG Sound Labs modules are available in several formats, including Moog style and Eurorack.
  66. Synthwerks has introduced some unique modules, especially the force sensing resistor family of modules.
  67. Subconscious Studios – offers a small line of Eurorack modules, including a VCO and LFP.
  68. Synthesizer Factory – makes an all-in-one Euro synth module, the Synth Machine.
  69. Synthetic Sound Labs – makes both Eurorack and 5U modules
  70. Thonk – UK firm that is ‘here to sell you DIY modulare synth goods, including EuroRack module kits.
  71. Tiptop (USA) – makes a small, but cool line of synth modules, including the Z3000 Smart Voltage Controlled Oscillator and the Z5000 Voltage Controlled Digital Signal Processor. Tiptop Audio on Synthtopia
  72. Toppobrillo – makers of the Quantimator and other Euro modules.
  73. TouellSkouarn – offers several Eurorack modules, including a Germanium Fuzz, Fet Pream and Stereo HeadPhone output.
  74. Trogotronic offers ‘cruel and unusual instruments’, including Eurorack modules, vintage style controllers and ‘Crude Controls’. Current modules include the Model 676 Fury M tube synth and the Model 666 module, which packs a VCO, VCF and VCA into one module.
  75. Vermona has announced a Quad MIDI-CV interface for Eurorack modular synths.
  76. Voltergeist is a new Eurorack & 5U developer that currently offers Synthesizers.com and MOTM  power components.
  77. XAOC Devices, aka ‘The Eastern Bloc Modular Synth Vendor’ has several sequencing modules in development.
  78. WMD Instruments makes a line of Eurorack modules that includes the Eurorack Geiger, Micro Hadron Collider and the Gamma Wave Source.

If you’ve got additions, corrections or comments about any of the manufacturers, please leave a comment below!

via MusicOfSound, MuffWriggler; image: thumbuki

EuroRack Modular Synthesizer Planner Lets You Make Your Plans To Rule The World With Synth Power!

The EuroRack Monster Planner is an online application that lets you make your plans to rule the world with synth power!

It’s the crack cocaine of synth fantasies, because you can use the Regular 12U Planner to design a relatively reserved modular synthesizer or you can choose the Monster Planner and plan your TyrannoSynth.

Bwa-ha-ha-ha!

There are some great examples of what you can do with the EuroRack Monster Planner at MusicOfSound.

And if you use the EuroRack modular planner to create an awesome modular synth of your own, put a link to it in the comments!

Flight Of Harmony’s Plague Bearer

Surachai damages some audio in a good way while demoing Flight Of Harmony’s Plague Bearer synth module. 

The signal path is a Cwejman VM-1 sine going into the Plague Bearer into your ear. The first sound you hear is the dry signal then immediately after, the Plague Bearer gets its way. The LFO’s are from the A-143-3 Quad LFO and Livewire’s Dalek Modulator. The repetitive 8 beat sequence is being pendulum-ed by an A-154/A-155. 

“I have no idea why my video has the quality of a 70’s porn, but I like it!” adds Surachai. “Modular sluts unite!”

Details at the TrashAudio site.

Plague Bearer Barebones Kit

Flight of Harmony is offering a barebones kit for their Plague Bearer synth module, designed to infect, corrupt and pervert a signal beyond recognition. 

Each filter has controls for varying the high and low corner frequencies of the passband, as well as variable gain and an input attenuator. It can be used as a filter, an oscillator, a noise generator, or even as a resonance oscillator.

Depending on the settings, the filter can be a lowpass, highpass, single-bandpass, or multiple-bandpass.

Adjusting the resonance point can cause the filter to self-oscillate in many ways: By adjusting the controls to just below the point of oscillation, and then applying a pulse, square, or other abrupt-edged input signal waveform will “ring” the filter. A simple “click” on the input can give a percussive output sound – from bass drum to bell to a harsh metallic clang; Crank the controls up and this beast will scream like a banshee!

The oscillation can be damped or continuous. Chain a couple in series and get accumulating feedback – the build-up can be slow, fast or instantaneous.

White Noise is easy to do – you don’t even need an input signal! Turn the input all the way down, and then slowly turn the gain up. You can adjust the “color” of the noise with the frequency controls. Daisy-chaining multiple filters can give a “comb” or multi-phase noise. A single filter can give a STRONG chorus effect if so desired, useful as a sub-oscillator or just to “fatten” a sound.

The barebones kit is $35.

The Plague Bearer – A Quad Voltage-Controlled Resonant Bandpass Filter

Flight of Harmony’s Plague Bearer is a quad Voltage-Controlled Resonant Bandpass filter, designed with the goals of maximum signal alteration and maximum parameter controllability.

Flight of Harmony appears to subscribe to the Metasonix school of gear naming.

The Plague Bearer is currently sold out.

Description:

Each filter has controls for varying the high and low corner frequencies of the passband, as well as variable gain and an input attenuator. Each section of the Plague Bearer can be used as a filter, an oscillator, a noise generator, or even as a resonance oscillator!

Depending on the settings, the filter can be a lowpass, highpass, single-bandpass, or multiple-bandpass. Adjusting the resonance point can cause the filter to self-oscillate in many ways: By adjusting the controls to just below the point of oscillation, and then applying a pulse, square, or other abrupt-edged input signal waveform will “ring” the filter. A simple “click” on the input can give a percussive output sound – from bass drum to bell to a harsh metallic clang; Crank the controls up and this beast will scream like a banshee! The oscillation can be damped or continuous. Chain a couple in series and get accumulating feedback – the build-up can be slow, fast or instantaneous.

White Noise is easy to do – you don’t even need an input signal! Turn the input all the way down, and then slowly turn the gain up. You can adjust the “color” of the noise with the frequency controls. Daisy-chaining multiple filters can give a “comb” or multi-phase noise. About phase-shift characteristics: A single filter can give a STRONG chorus effect if so desired, useful as a sub-oscillator or just to “fatten” a sound.

The Plague Bearer’s patchbay is designed to fit the most patch options possible in the small space available. Each filter has four Input/Output (I/O) connections: High CV, Low CV, Signal In, and Signal Out. Each of these has two jacks, one 3.5mm phone jack for external signals to avoid floating grounds, and one 0.080” tip jack for internal patching between filters. Each pair is direct-connected as a multiple – NOT a summing node!

For maximum flexibility, the Plague Bearer can run off two 9V batteries or a 12V.A.C. wall wart (wall wart included with unit). The batteries are mounted externally in an unobtrusive location for ease of replacement. The power source is selected via the power switch.

Details at the Plague Bearer site.

via Matrix