Doepfer Intros Five Polyphonic Eurorack Modules

Doepfer has announced the availability of five new polyphonic Eurorack modules: the A-111-4 Quad VCO, A-105-4 Quad Poly SSI VCF, A-132-8 Octal Poly VCA, A-141-4 Quad Poly VCADSR, and A-190-5 Polyphonic USB/Midi to CV/Gate Interface.

“Modular synthesizers are almost exclusively monophonic structures, since true polyphonic patches require a lot of modules — at least four VCOs, four VCFs, four VCAs, and eight ADSRs for a ‘classic’ four-voice patch,” notes CEO Dieter Doepfer. “But even then it’s difficult to control filter resonance or modulation depth of all the filters, for example, or the attack and decay time of all the envelope generators simultaneously.”

“Now it’s possible to integrate these functions into the modular synth world with our polyphonic modules, though the idea is not just to recreate a standard polyphonic synth within the modular system but rather (to) realize new polyphonic structures that go far beyond a standard polyphonic synth and also far beyond the typical monophonic structures of a modular system since they still offer access to all parameters via CV or gate.”

The new modules include:

  • The A-111-4 Quad VCO module features four precision CEM3340-based — triangle core — VCOs (Voltage Controlled Oscillators), each with its own separate internal +/- power supply (to ensure stability and prevent unwanted VCO synchronisation). Each VCO has the same individual controls, and inputs/outputs.
  • The A-105-4 Quad Poly SSI VCF module is Doepfer’s first polyphonic filter, featuring four identical 24dB lowpass (SSM2044-type) filters. The module itself includes the following controls and inputs/outputs: F (frequency); FM (frequency modulation) intensity; Q (resonance); audio input L (level); CVF (control voltage frequency) attenuator; CVFM (control voltage frequency modulation) attenuator; CVQ (control voltage resonance) attenuator; CVL (control voltage level) attenuator; CVF (control voltage frequency) socket; CVFM (control voltage frequency modulation) socket; CVQ (control voltage resonance) socket; CVL (control voltage level) socket; FM (frequency modulation) 1 – 4 sockets; audio In (input) 1 – 4 sockets; and audio Out (output) 1 – 4 sockets, so each filter features a separate FM input as well as an audio input and output.
  • The A-132-8 Octal Poly VCA module is an octal VCA (Voltage Controlled Amplifier), that Doepfer says is ‘primarily primed for polyphonic applications’. It includes four pairs of VCAs — each pair including two daisy-chained VCAs, with one VCA having a linear control scale and the other a linear or exponential control scale, selectable via internal jumpers. Two VCAs are provided for each voice, since one VCA is usually required for the loudness envelope and another for velocity (or other functions like individual voltage-controlled loudness of each voice, amplitude modulation, and so on). All VCAs are DC coupled.
  • The A-141-4 Quad Poly VCADSR module is a quad voltage-controlled envelope generator that’s tailored to polyphonic applications. It features four ADSR-type voltage-controlled envelope generators with exponential curve shapes (charge/discharge curves of a capacitor). Common manual controls and CVA, CVD, CVS, and CVR inputs with corresponding polarizers are available for the attack (A), decay (D), sustain (S), and release (R) parameters. All four envelope generators have a gate input (G1 – G4), a control LED, and an envelope output (Out1 – Out4). Applications include polyphonic patches, such as four envelope generators with the same envelope parameters to control four VCFs, VCAs, or other modules.
  • The A-190-5 Polyphonic USB/Midi to CV/Gate Interface module provides four voices with a 1V/octave-standard CV Note (pitch control voltage) to control VCOs and a Gate output (to control envelope generators), alongside two additional (CV2 and CV3) control voltages. The two additional control voltage outputs can be controlled by MIDI velocity, volume, modulation, pitch bend, aftertouch, or freely-assignable MIDI controllers. Multiple modes are selected by switches, with the result shown in the LCD. In play mode, for example, the LEDs of the first four switches display the gate states, while certain parameters of each mode can be edited.

“Modular synthesizers will still be predominantly used for monophonic sounds,” adds Doepfer, “But at least one polyphonic sound appears in many pieces of music and now it’s possible to integrate this into the modular synth world with our polyphonic modules.”

Pricing and Availability

The modules are available now, with the following pricing:

  • The A-111-4 Quad VCO, A-105-4 – €400.00 EUR
  • Quad Poly SSI VCF – €200.00 EUR
  • A-132-8 Octal Poly VCA – €160.00 EUR
  • A-141-4 Quad Poly VCADSR – €160.00 EUR
  • A-190-5 Polyphonic USB/Midi to CV/Gate Interface – €300.00 EUR

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