good way to start modular?

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novielo
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good way to start modular?

Post by novielo » Thu Sep 04, 2008 3:03 pm

hi, i'm looking to get a modular. i don't whant to buy a system at once but rather over a period of 2 years.

i tought about the dot com system for 1440$ you get a 22 space modular.

it's sounds fine but after looking mfb stuff got my attention. for 899$ (kraftzwerg) you got a basic modular with money left to buy an empty modular case, a psu for it and even maybe midi/cv for that same money. this will allow to add module over the mfb. plus it seems that eurorack got alot more of special effects and sequencer to offer.

does it sounds like a good idea or i will have issues using the mfb with other modules?
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meatballfulton
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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by meatballfulton » Thu Sep 04, 2008 5:18 pm

Your lucky day...I used to own that dotcom "entry" system and now have the MFB. The MFB has a MIDI/CV converter built in, you won't need another one.

If you're on a budget you won't find anything better than the MFB, the only cheaper modular is the PAiA 9700 (had that one too) and the MFB is a better starter for a few reasons:

1. Way more funtionality...3 VCOs plus 2 LFOs trumps both PAiA and dotcom in oscillator count, has stuff both dotcom (noise, S&H, ring mod) and PAiA (S&H, bipolar pitch bend) lack...so you can do more cool stuff with it before needing to expand.

2. It's semi-modular but 100% patchable, so it's usable out of the box even if you have no idea about how to patch stuff together.

3. You don't have to build it!!!!

As far as compatibility the MFB can be fully cross patched to any other modular that uses V/oct scaling and positive gating...that means almost anything except 70s PAiA, Yamaha, Korg and Moog analogs.

The big plus to dotcom is you can buy it over time (though you get the pieces over time, too :( ) if you're tight on funds. The downside is it's freaking huge...the cabinet is four feet wide. It sounds very good and it is more flexible than the MFB in a number of ways but you need to add more modules ($$$) to get the same feature set.

The PAiA is still a good starter if you're comfortable building an electronics kit and paying an extra $340 for MFB is impossible.
I listened to Hatfield and the North at Rainbow. They were very wonderful and they made my heart a prisoner.

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novielo
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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by novielo » Thu Sep 04, 2008 6:29 pm

is there an cv and clock out on the kraftzwerg? i don't think so. what i did have in mind with the second midi/cv interface was the one from mfb, http://www.analoguehaven.com/mfb/midicv/ i wrote to analogue haeven to know what they mean buy rack case.
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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by meatballfulton » Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:09 pm

novielo wrote:is there an cv and clock out on the kraftzwerg?
CV outs yes, clock and stop/start, no.

The CV/MIDI is on the rear of the unit so you can't see it in the photos.
I listened to Hatfield and the North at Rainbow. They were very wonderful and they made my heart a prisoner.

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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by n3wt15 » Tue Sep 09, 2008 9:47 pm

ive wanted to go modular for a long time, and never really felt like i knew enough at the time to get into it...

i picked up a nord modular g1 to learn the basics, and i think that really helped me learn some stuff, now i have the g2 and wire them into eachother, also into my spectralis, kp3, and vsynth....its my ghetto rig modular system, but i think its awesome...

im at the point now where i want to add something else, ive been looking at the analoguesolutions vostok for a while now....but thats a bit out of my range

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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by novielo » Wed Sep 10, 2008 2:08 pm

n3wt15; you seem to have a very good set-up like that. with all that stuff and a v-synth you sure can do alot! the vostok look very interesting but as you point out it's expensive. i beleive there is some kind of clones of these module tough. maybe: http://www.moogaudio.com/product_info.p ... ts_id=1163 and you could built your modular based on effects since you already have 2 nord you could do something like: nord--> modular effects--> nord.

meatball: did the mfb kraftzwerg came with patchchord?
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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by guesswho » Wed Sep 10, 2008 10:30 pm

I'm looking at starting a Modcan B series set up. Very pricey but I like what I've heard, the modules and rack look great and I live nearby if anything goes wrong. I had a nord modular G1 which I replaced with a micro, because I regret selling the G1.
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Roland JP-4/Roland JU-1 w/PG-300/Nord Modular G1/M.A.M. ADX1//Casio CZ-1000/doepfer MAQ 16/3/waldorf Pulse+/waldorf micro Q

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novielo
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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by novielo » Mon Sep 15, 2008 11:44 pm

haven't time relay to write last week 'cause uni started. 4 courses + full time job... takes alot of the available time.

i'll go with the kraftzwerg semi modular, couple of days to get the money and looking to have maybe a demo unit.

i also had time last week-end to do the cabinet that will work in parallel with the kraftzwerg. it's build for fracrak and eurorack modules.

Image

looks pink but it's more red-brown...

my wife laughted about me:

her: "what the h**l's that color? pink? hhhaaa salmon??"
i: "that ain't pink, it's white grain with dark red over"
her: "ya right"
i: "...i'll sand it again"

anyway, now i have to put a power supply in there. i looked at doepfer website, at 200$ + shipping i think there's something to do to have something similar for that price. i did found this:
Image

at this adress: http://www.escience.ca/hobby/RENDER/000 ... 12118.html
it seems that it could do the job. i
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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by Henfield » Mon Sep 22, 2008 9:39 pm

I like the idea of the Kraftwerg, but there is one component of a "typical" setup that is missing: a sequencer. If this unit had at least just a simple 8 step sequencer, I would sell off my Moog gear and purchase the Kraftwerg. I know that MFB also sells the Step 64 MIDI/CV sequencer, but having it all in one with the Kraftwerg would make it an all-in-one package that could be added into with other modular gear.

I like the cabinet that novielo built, but I think that I would spring for the Doepfer Power supply, as it comes with metal mounting rails for the modules, a connector board for the modules to plug into, and has the ability to give you +5V power (which is needed for some Eurorack modules).

I have looked at the modular route as well, but the initial investment in the case has always stopped me. The dotcom synth is a good idea, but it looks like there are more modules available for the Eurorack format, and they are very cost effective.

Does anyone have any sound comparisons to compare the various types of systems (dotcom, MFB, Doepfer, Analogue Systems, Analogue Solutions, etc..)?

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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by novielo » Mon Sep 22, 2008 11:37 pm

a step sequencer would be great on the kraftzwerg. but considering the price and the fact that here's a midi/cv build-in the kraftzwerg. i believe that something like a mmt-8 would be more appropriate and flexible.

i received it friday and this little thing is a blast. the only point so far that i don't absolutly like, but i haven't take alot of time with it, is the envelope. i think it's a little slow, but it sounds great it's just that when doing drums the attack seems slow. but like i said, i have play it alot this week-end.

the idea of getting the psu/rail/connectors of doepfer crossed my mind also, but i haven't whent forward to it. because, while looking at the dimension required i realised that frac and euro are realy close in height something like 1/8". i don't want 2 psu inside the cabinet, nor 2 types of rails. so, i used larger wood square, instead of rails, to be able to mount frac and doepfer in the same cabinet. and i use a power supply of -+ 24v, this way, with regulators i can have both -+15 and -+12 volts inside. for connectors, i use small terminal block (in french "bornier", i'm not sure about the term in english). i'll have to make my own ribbon cable for this, but this part of the job is more then easy.

about the 5 volt you talked about. it's not included with the diy power supply, you have to buy a 5v mini-something from doepfer.

doepfer psu would have been better if only using euro, but since i don't want to be "limited" with euro i'm taking the other road.

also, something realy cool from mfb: you can get a midi/cv-interface in the eurorack format AND a power supply (without 5v) WITH 8 available doepfer style connections for 135$ you may also add a 3u rack case for 260$ (including the midi1cv, psu, connectors). http://www.analoguehaven.com/mfb/midicv/
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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by Henfield » Wed Sep 24, 2008 2:19 am

novielo wrote:also, something realy cool from mfb: you can get a midi/cv-interface in the eurorack format AND a power supply (without 5v) WITH 8 available doepfer style connections for 135$ you may also add a 3u rack case for 260$ (including the midi1cv, psu, connectors). http://www.analoguehaven.com/mfb/midicv/
Thnaks for the info on the MFB, I had noticed that it was a low-cost MIDI/CV interface, but I didn't realize about the power supply and the low-cost case option (probably since they don't have a picture of the case). I have contacted AH to get more info about the case, as there isn't much info at AH's or MFB's site about the case and any limitations with the power supply. I think that this would be the way that I would start, and I would need to add one or two ADSR envelope generator and a VCA to interface with my Moogerfooger pedals to get my modular going. I then need to find a cheap CV or MIDI step sequencer to makeup for my lousy keyboard playing!

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novielo
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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by novielo » Wed Sep 24, 2008 1:14 pm

let us know after you contact ah if they got some. for the psu it's 8 available sockets and 500 ma
and i beleive the case is this one... empty of course

Image
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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by Henfield » Thu Sep 25, 2008 9:05 pm

Thanks for the pic of the MFB case. Shawn from AH sent me a link that has the same pic. He said that he did have one, but it was sold the same day that he received it, so he was not able to make an evaluation as to its sturdiness and value. He has more on order, and I plan on getting one when he gets it in. Initially, it will serve as just the MIDI/CV interface for my Fooger setup, but I will stock it with modules as soon as my bank account will let me.

Thanks again for the heads up on the MFB unit. I also like the Black with white lettering on their modules!

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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by novielo » Thu Sep 25, 2008 9:45 pm

no prob sir.

tell us when you'll get it what it feels/look like. alot of folks would be interrested by this i'm sure. a rack ready to receive modules for that price.

mine is almost done, i hope i'll have time to complete the psu this evening. i'll post pics when done
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Re: good way to start modular?

Post by chamomileshark » Fri Sep 26, 2008 10:37 pm

When I was thinking about a modular I was thinking about several things;

1. Size of the modules (full size vs mini modular)
2. Price bracket
3. Number of companies in that format. If I was going to take a while to build a system you probably need for there to be more than one company, just in case they stop for some reason.
4. Any "must have" functionality
5. I had a sneak around the forums to check on delivery/quality problems

There is a modular forum at http://www.modularsynth.net/index.php

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