Wednesday, July 30, 2008

AFGs Arrive!!!


Of course they have to arrive in the morning *before* I have to go to


Ok, so I played around during the day at work - shh, don't tell - and I am absolutely blown away! And, I'm pretty sure I've only just scratched the surface.

As most people have no doubt guessed, the real stand outs of the AFG are the harmonic animation features of the square and saw waves and the Matter / Anti-Matter. You no doubt have guessed what the harmonic animation sounds like (PWM on steroids) but you probably have no idea what the Anti-Matter mode does. Well, it makes it sound fucking awesome, that's what it does!!

Here's the first short demo. This is the animated square output, with the two oscillators of the Dalek in LFO mode and modulating the PWM+ and PWM- parameters (note, this is only half the parameters for harmonic animation). The start of the clip is with no modulation, and slowly I increase the CV amount for PWM- first and then PWM+. I let it get a little crazy and "bottom" out the PWM- cause I think it sounds cool. Then comes a sweep of the Frequensteiner filter. After the sweep, I engage the Anti-Matter mode. BOOM! Another filter sweep, then a quick pop back to Matter mode, and then back to Anti-Matter mode.

In this demo, we're listening to the standard square wave output. First a filter sweep, then engage Anti-Matter, then another sweep, and another quick A/B between Matter mode and Anti-Matter.

Finally here's the PWM output (yes, the PWM is separate from both the Square *AND* the Animated Square !!!). Same deal, starts with no modulation, I increase the modulation, filter sweep, Anti-Matter mode, another filter sweep, A/B Matter and Anti-Matter one more time. The PWM is absolutely sick!

Remember all of these sounds are with *A SINGLE AFG*!

So, on to a less "educational" patch. Here's the Sine outputs of each AFG into each half of the ring mod of the Dalek Modulator. The pitch changes are from the Plan B M23 Analog Shift Register. It's sampling the output of the Dual Cyclotron, clocked by Difference and Square outputs of the Vulcan modulator (I switch halfway through the patch), and each of the 4 outputs are going to the FM inputs of each AFG; one is set to Linear response, and the other Exponential on each AFG. It reminded me of a retro computer. About halfway through the clip, I start playing with Anti-Matter mode. First on the "modulator" AFG, then on the "carrier" AFG, and then finally on both.

And, at last, here's the piest de resistance. I've been into drones lately, so here's a patch I worked on throughout the day.
It's one AFG, using the Animated Saw output. Each half of the Vulcan is modulating the PPM+ and PPM- (I like these on the saw instead of the PWM+/-). The Sub Out of this AFG is set to Saw and plugged into it's own FM input, set to Exponential and adjusted just a tiny bit. This really fattens it up. I must say, I really like the FM'd saw sound on the AFG. I didn't like it at all on the M15, but I really like it here. Finally, the AFG is in Anti-Matter mode.

The "whine" sound in the clip is the Dalek modulator ring mod out, tuned to a harmonic of the first AFG. The "dry" saw part of the drone is just's the second AFG tuned to the same note as the first AFG, using the Saw output. I can't remember now if it was using Anti-Matter mode, but I think it was not.

The Frequensteiner filter is being modulated by the Dual Cyclotron, both the Aux and Main outputs. Throughout the clip, you'll hear me adjust the volume of each of the sounds, the filter cutoff, and the modulation amount of the filter.

Enjoy. Video demo should be ready end of day sunday. i hope.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Substitute Rig

This is what I've been working with the last few days. It's actually
really fun to take away a bunch (in this case, like half) of your
modules and just see how well you can work with just a select few.

In this particular patch, I was getting re-aquainted with using the
Livewire Dual Bissell to smooth out the rising and falling edges of
the square waves coming from the Dalek Modulator. You can really get
some subtle timbre changes with that alone. It's like being able to
low-pass filter only parts of the waveform. Actually, that's not what
it's like, it's what it is!

Another fun thing that I was doing here was driving the sequencer
(clock) with the MachineDrum. One of the MachineDrum machines, GND-
IM, sends a simple impulse, which happens to be plenty hot enough to
function as a trigger for the modular. So I simply sequenced the
pulses in the MachineDrum and the modular locked perfectly to it.
I'll definitely be exploring that functionality more real soon.

Speaking of triggers, I've lately taken to using trigger pulses
instead of EGs to hit the M13 low pass gates. Those vactrols respond
so smoothly, you'd never know an EG wasn't used. In this patch, I'm
using two of the trigger rows from the A-155 sequencer to open each
gate on the M13.

The basics of this patch are two halves of the Dalek, processes
through the Dual Bissell, and then each half goes into each half of
the M13, which are being opened, as I mentioned, by the triggers on
the sequencer, which is being clocked by the machinedrum.

Finally, to add a bit of character, I'm taking the ring mod out of the
Dalek, gating it with a A-132 linear VCA (opened by the M10, being
triggeres by the sequencer) and processing that through the A-188-2,
and mixing it in with the main signal described before.

I'm still having some trouble with the interface, so I'll leave it
patched up until I can record it.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I'm BAAA-ACK... the saddle again!

So here's the latest. I'm going to be getting a Single Doepfer Monster Case. Shawn's hooking a brotha up, as always. I'll be picking it up the weekend of August 9th, I'll be down in LA anyway, so I'll just swing by the new AH shop :D.

In the meantime, thanks to the boundless generosity of mr. bdu, I have a loaner 6U Doepfer rack to tide me over until I take delivery of the Monster Case.

Once I got it home, I immediately picked a few modules (Livewire Dalek, Vulcan, and Bissel, Plan B M13 and M10, Doepfer A-155, A-138c, A-132, A-188-2, and Harvestman Polivoks) and started in on a patch.

This was my first time with the A-188-2 and it seemed so well suited to noisy stuff, I went in that direction.

Unfortunately, I seem to be having some issues with my audio interface and can only get a few minutes of recording before it dies. This is the longest clip that I was able to get.

The sound source is the Dalek Ring Mod out, with one row of the sequencer controlling the pitch of one oscillator. That is being filtered by the Polivoks and run into the A-188-2. The Polivoks has a bit of self modulation (BP output patched to CV1) being attenuated by one half of the Vulcan and the A-132 VCA. The other half of the Vulcan is clocking the A-155 sequencer.

The A-188-2 has two outputs, each output has it's own delay tap mixes as well as overall Wet/Dry balance. One output of the A-188-2 (the noiser part of the patch) is going to half of the Plan B M13, being opened by the M10, which is being triggered by one trigger row on the sequencer. The other half of the A-188-2 is going to the other half of the M13 which is being opened directly by one of the trigger rows of the sequencer. The M13 vactrols almost make EGs unnecessary for plucky sounds.

So the intro is that second half of the A-188-2...I'm turning the mix from 100% wet to about 15% wet. Then, I slowly turn the balance on the Plan B M13 so you hear more and more of the noisy signal.

After that, it's just messing with adding triggers on the sequencer rows.

Then it cuts out >:(

I left the patch together, just in case I figure this interface problem out tonight.


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