Tag: metasonix

What about… low-pass gates?

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The low-pass-gate is a traditional Buchla design that has some mysterious qualities to it. For decades it has mostly been seen in Buchla synthesizers and luckily is now available in various forms, formats and styles. But what is a low-pass-gate? It is an electrical circuit that combines elements of amplifiers and low-pass filters. Therefor it will be used to determine the amplitude of a sound and its sonic complexity.

Due to its technical structure it is possible to just send trigger to the CV inputs of low-pass gates and still get envelope-shaped results. This is because low-pass gates usually use vactrols –  photoresistive opto-isolators, or or opto-couplers. What is that? Basically vactrols are light-emitting diodes (LED) or another light-emitting component and a semiconductor-based photoresistor. With these two components you have a source of light and a detector of light, both sitting in a closed housing, electrically isolated from each other. When you send a voltage into a vactrol – the light-emitting part – will emit light and the detector will receive this light = this opens the gate. And because this special construction is some kind of slow, it has a special natural sound to it. And as the light received by the detector is opening the VCA and controlling the filter cutoff at the same time sounds   at low amplitude will sound duller. And this is where the magic happens, this behavior in combination with the “natural” respond of vactrols make low-pass gates sound so nice.

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Make Noise – Optomix (Rev.2)

All time classic: The Optomix is might be THE module people think of first when talking about low-pass gates in eurorack. It has been around for years and has built a large fan base. The Optomix by Make Noise actually features two low-pass-gates utilizing 4 vactrols to provide simultaneous voltage control over amplitude and frequency content of a signal. In Rev. 2 the damp circuit was updated to accept audio as well as CV for patching side-chain compression. Additionally Optomix offers a summing stage complete with an AUXiliary IN allowing for the chaining of multiple units to create larger mixes.

Rabid Elephant – Natural Gate

The Natural Gate might be the most advanced low-pass gate when it comes to engineering complexity. Due to this it has some unique features exceptional sound design capabilities. For example, it is possible to choose between three “material characteristics”, each of them responding differently to excitation signals. As the trigger frequency increases, the low-pass gates open up more and more. Additionally the decay varies depending on the pitch of incoming audio material. Thanks to this behavior Natural Gate has a very pleasant sound and a very natural sound. Its two channels also featuring ducking compressor, wave shaper or envelope functionality.

Doepfer A-101-2 Vactrol Lowpass Gate

The Doepfer A-101-2 Vactrol Lowpass Gate is a single low-pass gate with the ability to also be used as VCA or low-pass filter – and it features resonance control that not many low-pass gates provide. It has a rather aggressive sound, especially with lots of resonance. What also sets the Doepfer apart from others is that you can set the mode of operation not only manually but also via gates, which is the reason for two gate inputs; this is very interesting in combination with clock dividers or trigger sequencers.

  • Gate 1 high & gate 2 low = low pass mode
  • Gate 1 low & gate 2 high = VCA mode
  • both Gate 1 & 2 high = combo mode

Metasonix RK5 Dual Low Pass Gate

The Metasonix RK5 Dual Low Pass Gate is a very special module. It takes the concept of a low-pass gate, invented in the 1970s and uses technical solutions from the 1950s – vacuum tube audio circuits. The module offers a very special warm and gently distorted sound with a rather long decay. It is the perfect module for those who want to explore “new” low-pass gate timbres and want to create unique, somewhat dirty Buchla Bongos and other percussive sounds.

Verbos Electronics – Amplitude & Tone Controller

The Verbos Amplitude & Tone Conroller consist of a entirely discrete VCA combined with a vactrol controlled low-pass filter. The input stage lets you dial in a very pleasant distortion if you want it to. The sound is gorgeous somewhere between wood and acid. As all Verbos modules this is a very high quality module with a classy vintage sound. And you don’t only get the sound but also the look – how beautiful it is!

Make Noise – DynaMix

The DynaMix is the second Make Noise module in this overview, as Make Noise is constantly developing new modules featuring vactrols and keep exploring what low-pass gates can be. It is also as a two-channel low-pass gate with integrated mixer. Instead of vactrols, transistor circuits are used to control the integrated filters and VCAs. This results in a harsher and faster responds than with an integrated vactrol. Its sound is comparatively hard, but nonetheless very musical and the circuit is capable to gently distort the sound when you want it.

This is by no means a complete overview of the available modules or a full review of the modules discussed. The what about… texts are here to give you new ideas and maybe another perspective on things. All these modules offer more features than we have talked about in this post. For further information please click the provided links or – even better – visit the shop and ask the SchneidersLaden experts in the showroom.

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NAMM 16 – Horsecock

Master of offence himself, Eric Barbour does it again! Disguised behind the neutral name RK-2 XS-VCA is the Horsecock, a new unorthodox VCA based on a looooooooong TV tube, never before used for audio, poking out of the faceplate like a male organ thru a glory hole.

Like Ali G once said “Love – the most beautiful ting between a man, a woman and a ‘orse.”

horsecock_1 horsecock_2 horsecock_front

! Schneidersladen 2.0 !

attentionWe have a new webshop, now.  All of our existing clients will get an email latest tomorrow (july, 2nd) with their new login and pass to be able to see existing orders, to add new ones or so.
Some things will not work fine directly, some things will be better, please let us know about this per mail to shop@schneidersladen.de . WE will go ahead working it out. Thank you and good night.

METASONIX: WE DONT CLONE VINTAGE CRAP!

MS_F-1The S2000 tubesynth  and a very few units of the “complex distortion pedal F-1” by Metasonix are now available from the storefront at Schneidersladen in Berlin. We did not yet edit these products to our system cause they will probably be sold before we did this, so if you want one, please see the info on their website and just order on the phone or come in to do so.

Tubes again..

Eric Barbour alias Metasonix complained about the americans who often dont like his way to promote his products – so the new version of a tubesynth is just called S-2000 having no additional name as the earlier wretchmachine.

The cheapest metasonix product ever has now been released as the F-1, a tube distortion pedal. We brought some of them to get them reviewed asap.

The unbelievable I-cunt (no pic here) was an exclusive deal with our american colluege analogue haven alias shawn c. who probably was quite proud on having such a peversive looking unit in stock for just his own.  Because we could not check the difference, I would say the F-1 is probably better and most probably much cheaper!

Metasonix coming!

Metasonix has now sent a first bunch of the R54 supermodulemt_r54, what is in fact  a modular tube oscillator making his little series of modular components for the eurorack nearly complete (for now!). The oscillator is not yet uploaded to our webshop but you can send formless mail-orders if you want one.

Rogers Bigcities music..

sbmeetswmdRoger Cordell alias Big city music had a smaller stand upstairs that was totally crowded with stuff from our friends from jomox, sherman, Eric Barbour, Eowave, the surfin step sequencer, the tetra sequencer, racks with analogue systems only, several mellotrones, a lot of stomp boxes and interesting small stuff. With all those manufacturers standing in front of their units it was totally crowded mostly but a bit lost in between all those software sellers next to them.
Here we met the symphatic young guys of WMD alias William Matthewson, Eric Barbour, many friends from europe and the inventor of the 4ms modules and pedals called Dann Green. Definitely we will go with them soon after such a symphatic chat we had there.

more Metasonix

r60andr54supermodulesNew Eurorack modules from Metasonix will follow soon as well. There will be the  R54 Supermodule that can act as a tube Hz/V VCO or as a filter! The R60 MIDI/CV interface can tune itself when you patch back your VCO into the R-60. Tracking any type of VCO in possible.

Metasonix tube drums

metasonixd1000Eric Barbour alias Metasonix introduced his pre-production model of a tube drummachine with an internal sequencer called D-1000. The 8-step triggersequencer can run the  two drum instruments, SD and Cymbal with CV-able tuning, generating very interesting drumsounds. All housed in a grey plastic lunchbox as known from the KV-100 Assblaster. Available in about three months earliest.

Metasonix modules

The R52 by metasonix and some other modules are unfortunately out of stock at the time in schneidersbuero, but they are very attraktive for interesting sounds apart from just noise. In addition to this Video on you tube showing the R52 in use there is a great interview with its inventor Eric Barbour in this months german synthesizer magazin. In addition with the review about the latest Release called Assblaster KV100 it is a reason to go for it.

Synthesizer Magazin #14:

The german synthesizermagazin #14The latest issue of germans synthesizer magazin contents a well done review of the Metasonix Wretchmachine S1000 with 4 full pages of explanations and pictures. . in german only but well done.  Then there is another three pages about the Mutronics Mutator, out of production but a classic unit in between.  About the classical CS-80 by Yamaha there are another six pages including many links, and – by the way – I would like to remind you that there are CS-80 filters available for the Studio electronics Code also !! We have one demo unit with four voices and all extras now on special sale!
If you would like to buy the Synthesizermagazin, please feel free to buy it from Schneidersladen or just give em an email if its not yet online.

ABOUT STROMKULT


STROMKULT is our platform for updates and news on SCHNEIDERSLADEN and SUPERBOOTH, selected electronic musical instruments and events related to modular synthesizers, sequencers, competent drum machines, analog modular systems, midi tools, controllers, converters and related products of all kinds. You can find all kinds of events related to these topic in our EVENT CALENDAR. Also on this site you will find lots of videos from SUPERBOOTH – the world’s largest trade fair for electronic musical instruments, news about events and workshops at SCHNEIDERSLADEN.

Herr Schneider started in 1999 with SCHNEIDERSBUERO as a sales and marketing platform for the smallest manufacturers and inventors of electronic musical instruments. Products were shown online, in our showrooms and at the original SUPERBOOTH – workshops and countless reviews have been featured in magazines all over Europe.

These very special instruments and tools are now often available from specialist dealers all over Europe and can be purchased directly from our webshop SCHNEIDERSLADEN worldwide.