Monday, October 23, 2006

Zeroscillator by Cynthia Industries

A non SynthTech module on the site?

I won't do this too often, but this module is special, it is a MOTM format VCO with FM capability, but not just any FM, it is FM that has a smooth crossover through zero, something that has not been acchieved with an analog module until this module came along.
It's pricy, $750,- plus shipping, but it's worth the money. Go to Cynthia for more info on this great module. Be sure to check out the samples on that page.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

MOTM users in the UK

Not so much a post as a question to readers out there?

If you are a MOTM user / builder and are based in the UK, I'd like to hear from you. Perhaps we can exchange patches, idea's, and even think about MOTM gatherings at some point.
Leave me a comment.


K2K Koos

Monday, October 16, 2006

The OLD Cloud generator MOTM-520 design

The prototype design of the Cloud generator description is below, this was an 8 oscillator module, however the current module in development has twice that, 16 oscillators!

Yet to give somewhat of an idea what a cloud generator is read the below OLD description.

The MOTM-520 is an entirely new concept in VCO design. First, the module is NOT any sort of 'granular synthesis' device. This confusion is due to our use of the term 'Cloud'. But we really couldn't think of a more descriptive term, so this is what we call it.
The MOTM-520 contains 8 independent digital oscillators, each with Sine and Pulse outputs. The Sine outputs are very low distortion, less than 0.1% THD. The Square/Pulse waves can be PWM'd by an external control voltage or even audio. The sum of all 8 oscillators is routed to the SINE OUT and the SQR OUT jacks.
What makes the MOTM-520 generate what we call a 'Cloud' is by spreading apart the frequencies of 7 of the 8 oscillators (1 is the 'reference' pitch). This detuning can be manually adjusted using the SPREAD control, or with an external source (such as a LFO or EG). The WIDE/NARROW switch sets the overall frequency spread (NARROW = 1 semitone, WIDE = 1 octave). The module behaves just like any other 1V/Oct VCO, with standard COARSE, FINE and FM controls and inputs. The difference is that in a 2U space, you have 8 oscillators with no drift or calibration issues. Using SPREAD and SPREAD MODULATION, you can still get huge monophonic leads and interesting wooden percussive sounds. Each oscillator will spread up or down in different sensitivities, and in different directions. All of this creates the most massive bass and lead lines, all in a single VCO
module. But we were not content to stop there. You can ALSO independently modulate the relative phase of each oscillator to the reference. And then we went overboard and added one more 'modulation': CHAOS. The MOTM-520 uses the new MOTM-950 Power Supply, which supplies +5VDC as well as +-15VDC (uses a 6-pin MTA-156 connector)

Here is a sample of what the aboved would sound like.
This particular sample is NOT made with a 520, but it's a MOTM system *patched* as a '520. That is ~63 modules :)

LISTEN to the other samples on my previous post of the NEW design version, this is going to be a great new module! And yes, those are the real deal, no simulation!

Cloud generator Samples

The Cloud generator is the newest module from Synthesis Technology currently in development.
There are now some (low fi) samples available on their site, see below info.

(From Synthtech)
We have new MOTM-520 Cloud Generator samples running on hardware (not a simulation) here:


note that this hardware is 'lo-fi' recorded without any anti-aliasing outputfilters, so it's going to sound a bit "clangy". But you can get the general idea:)

Chaos_NB: this is all 16 oscillators running. Starting in unisonwith the chaos amplitude at minimum and the noise generator at its narrowest bandwidth, I step the amplitude up to maximum. I'm taking pretty coarse steps here, but the hardware allows very fine control.

Chaos_WB: this is all 16 oscillators running. Starting in unison with the chaos amplitude at minimum and the noise generator at its widest bandwidth, I step the amplitude up to maximum. As in the previous case, I'm taking pretty coarse steps here but the hardware allows very fine control.

PWM_LFO sweep : this is one oscillator playing alone while the pwm is swept from min to max by the lfo. The sine distortion is using a modulation/carrier ratio of 1.25 - many other ratios are possible.

All 3 samples have sine waves on 1 channel and pulses on the other.

MOTM 650 firmware update released.

There is new MOTM-650 firmware available for beat test:


Here are the release notes:

* Bugfix - Unison & Unison Steal voice allocation modes no longer
generate "VA_Hosed" errors when more notes played than there are
voices. Algorithm for dealing with released notes in Unison modes
changed, code cleaned up and made more understandable!
* Bugfix - Notes don't hang when note #127 received and sustain held.
* Feature Change - Note #127 (hex #7f) is ignored.

Use the MIDI updater program and install this code. Please report any bugs to Synthesis Technology. The main fix is the Unison modes and with the Sustain Pedal.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

(Modular) Synth Gathering California

=====Announcement ===========
Analog Heaven - California announces its 2006 annual synth gathering to be held
Sunday November 12 , 2006 at the Student Services Center of the College of Marin
in Kentfield, CA. Doors open at 9:30 AM and the venue will be open until 8:00
PM. The event is free but there will be a donation bucket to offset possible
janitorial fees.

Parking on campus on Sunday is free.
Take out and delivered food can be brought to the venue. There are plenty of
places to get food within a few minutes of the campus. The campus prohibits

The 5000 square foot facility should have plenty of room for all but if you plan
to plug in , extension cords and outlet blocks are probably in order. The room
has plenty of tables and chairs.

A campus map is at .
Attendees should enter at Laurel Avenue and park in Lot 4 for load in and load

From Highway 101, take the San Anselmo exit (northbound) or the Sir Francis
Drake Blvd. exit (southbound) and follow Sir Francis Drake Blvd. to College Ave.
(seventh stoplight off 101). Proceed a block to Laurel, turn left and go to
Lot 4 - see map.

Updates on the event will be posted to the Analogue Heaven mail list To
subscribe to that digest, e-mail:
analogue-digest-subscribe at

Hope to see you there!!


Thursday, October 12, 2006

MOTM Shopping spree

I'm on a shopping spree, but I need to stop now, my creditcard is starting to protest. :-)

I've ordered yet another kit, yes, it's true, yet another one, I ordered a MOTM-300 VCO , which will be my second VCO.
I contemplated a 310 for a while, and almost ordered it, but then I realised, hang on the kit business is nearly over, I would be smarter if I ordered the more expensive modules I have planned for my system as a kit while it is still possible. That way I save more money, and have more fun building these modules too.
A 310 will follow at some point but this will be in the future (sometime next year perhaps), and I've also decided that this 300 is the last MOTM order I place this year. I currently still await delivery of a 101, 390, 440, 910 , a 510 and now a 300, the list is long enough to keep me busy building for a little while and significantly expand my modest modular.
It will turn into a 2 VCO , 2 VCF, 1 s/h-noise gen, 1 dual LFO, 2 ADSR, a Wavewarper (unique!) and one RM/VCA plus midi CV and patch panel once these modules have been received. This should be enough to give a Minimoog and /or ARP 2600 a run for it's money, and it's brand new to boot and much more flexible. :-)

Stooge Larry

Remembering Larry Hendry, one of the 3 stooges, that ment so much for the MOTM community. I just read one message I received from him, after my question to him about cables, and reading his reply to me , not knowing me at all at the time, it illustrates again waht a great guy he was, and how helpfull he was towards fellow MOTM builders.
I didn't know him in person, only through the medium of e-mail, but I do miss him, and all his wisdom and help he offered.

Rest in Peace, Larry.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Project Aries sample

New sample of the single 'Victoria's Dance" is now available on the download page (see link column).
This 40 second clip is a 128bit/sec mp3 that avoids the aliasing and other artifacts on the full length version to give you a better impression (listen for the MOTM in the bass line ;-) )

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

1000 Visits! Thanks!

Need I say more, on October 10, at 21:07 GMT, my web blog was visited 1000 times.
Thank you all, this averages 8.3 persons a day, which brings the weekly total to over 58 persons a week, this is up 8 visits per week since I started, not huge, but nice none the less, keep visiting and I'll keep writing!

MOTM Kit Status and blog status.

As you may know the deadline for ordering your MOTM kits is December 1, but pls be aware that some kits may sell out before this deadline is reached, so look at the 'in stock' level of the modules to see if you could still order one, or not. If the level is 0 you are out of luck and can only hope to order the module as assembled only, provided it's not a sell out item that will no longer be available (like the 510 for instance).

While December 1 will be a milestone in Synthesis Technology's history in that respect, I am looking forward to my first with this webblog, we are approaching 1000 visitors, and I am excited and motivated by that. Thanks to all who visit my blog, and don't forget to check out the adverts, the more you visit them (no purchase needed) the better, it will help me finance my MOTM hobby, and be able to write about it here for your reading pleasure. :-)

Thursday, October 05, 2006

MY MOTM 510 is a GO!

MOTM-510s are a GO!

I was able to get the minimum order quantity, and also able to find AD538s
that will ship this year :)

So, everyone that has (or will) order a '510 will get one, but probably
not until Nov 20th at the *earliest*. It will depend on the Indiana work
load (remember, they are doing this to me as a favor for Paul H. His
brother/nephew are doing all of the work and making about $2/hr)

Paul S.

hooray, I will be able to get one example of the last ever run of the MOTM 510 wave warper.
What can it do? Listen to samples on : Wave warper And be amazed!

K2K Koos

Studio 35D

What's this?

Let me explain, a good friend of mine runs his own webblog, started of in dutch, but switched to the english language recently, which is better for the rest of the world.:-)
He among others is one of te people I correspond with regulary and we discuss all matters regarding synths, music, etc, and this includes modulars like the MOTM.His blog is relatively new, but more material will follow. Be sure to watch his post of his pscycho Yamaha DVD player........It is weird.....
I wanted to share with you two links of music he has recently created, one is for an art project, and the link to this is:
Crying Angels
This piece is a very nice evolving soundscape with some drums thrown in, the other piece below was made totally with only one Sequential Circuits Pro one, recorded track by track in to Logic Express. This song can be found here: Probe One.
Funny actually as I was planning to do a similar experiment with just the MOTM I have now. :-)
Anyway I'd nearly forget to share with you the link to his blog, this is: Studio 35D.


Monday, October 02, 2006

Firmware upgrade for MOTM 650

There is a new file to update the MOTM-650 to V1.3 RC1 (called beta code by most

Firmware update

This uses the updater program under WinXP ( in that directory). This
update fixes a know issue with UNISON and UNISON STEAL modes causing lock-ups
under certain conditions.

Those of you owning an MOTM 650, and have a computer with Win XP (which exludes myself, I'm waiting for an OS X version of the updater:-) ) can follow the above link to get the firmware and the updater.
It is still Beta, but if no problems are found within the next 10 days, it will be regarded as release version.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

The MOTM 510 Wavewarper Exit!

The next two weeks are your last chance to get your hands on a MOTM 510 Wavewarper module, both kit and assembled will be discontinued, although a Fracrack format module will be available in January.
So if you want one, order now. There will be a last run of this module if a minimum of 25 are ordered in the next two weeks, starting today! It will then be delivered starting December 1st, and you will not be charged until then provided there are enough ordered.

For those of you that want to know what a wavewarper is: see below description from the Synthesis Technology website

Oh yes, I did (pre) order one, as I did not want to miss out.....

The MOTM-510 is a new kind of analog signal processing module. It's not easy to describe what it does, but I'll try.

Let's start with the well-known Ring Modulator (like the MOTM-110 or MOTM-190). A Ring Modulator is a multiplier: the output can be written as Out = X * Y, where X and Y are the 2 input signals (sometimes referred to as the modulator and the carrier). X and/or Y can be audio or DC signals. The output is simply the voltage X times the voltage Y. This produces the sum of X and Y (X+Y) and the difference of X and Y (X-Y).

The traditional RM has no 'control voltage' inputs: you just feed 2 signals in, and get 1 signal out. The MOTM-510 takes this concept and generates entire new types of waveforms.

Instead of the 2 RM inputs, the basic WaveWarper has 3: X, Y and Z. These are audio inputs. The transfer function is OUT = X * (Y/Z)^m, where:

X is the GAIN signal. It controls the overall amplitude of the signal
Y is the 'main audio' signal, the one that is getting 'warped'
Z is the DIVISOR signal. This is acts to modulate the amplitude of the main audio signal before it gets warped
m is the Warp Factor. This is a fixed exponential factor, which is what is doing the 'warping'. No, it's not voltage controlled.
m varies (by the FACTOR control) from 0.2 to 0.6 (ROOT mode), 1 (UNITY, which makes it similar to a RM), to 2 to 5 (POWER mode)
each input (X, Y and Z) has attenuators
the AUDIO OUT is AC-coupled and band-limited to 18Khz. The FULL OUT is DC-coupled and can go as high as 200Khz!
But wait, there's more! There are 3 DC-coupled inputs called OFFSET. These can be DC control voltages (LFOs, EGs, etc) that add to the audio signals. In this manner, the WaveWarper can respond to 6 different modulation sources simultaneously.

Great....what does this MEAN? Well, it makes an absolute mess of even the simplest waveform. Effects range from frying bacon to a frog in a blender to sticking your head into a jet engine. You can warp LFOs into bizarre new waveforms, as well as the output of MOTM-800 EGs. You can process any line-level audio. Hours of fun!