So my question is,
Don't you guys think design is something we should be pressing more onto module manufacturers? I think there are two types of companies when it comes to this thinking, 1) Panel first design, designing the module to be an instrument that sounds good AND IS usable 2) The module first and then the panel. Now I understand you need to read the manual to fully get a module, but why not just color code inputs vs outputs, or put some arrows to show normalization, or LEDS to show clipping/+ or - cv etc... No matter how complex of a module you make, you can always imporve the panel readability and usability to reach usability standards.
I personally think that panel design is where Eurorack lacks most. We should be DEMANDING companies make more usable layouts. If we are shelving out
for this stuff, a little extra thought into the design of your module would go a long way. (Maybe Metasonix was a bad example to use because I feel like their OSCs sound broken all the time anyway
but i understand thats the point)
Snipped a bit, but anyway. Quite a few Eurorack module makers are one man shows, which comes with built in limitations.
A module mu--should probably have:
- Intuitive controls
- Easy to follow, easily legible graphics that do not obscure labelling the controls
- Solid engineering (ie, you won't murder it by feeding it +12V into the control input or something, there are limits to this)
- Good documentation
- Reasonable cost
Here's the thing. Very few people are able to do all these things all on their own. Plus, to quote Pterry, if you line up ten people and tell them to pull, four will pull, four will push, and two will go "What?", ie, what is easy to follow for one person is damn near useless for another.
As for the panel first vs module first thing, I'd prefer that the designer develops the best possible module for the particular application/niche' he's aiming for, not one that fits a pretty panel the best.
Plus the mention of Metasonix in the quoted part shows, IMO, that you don't really get part of the Eurorack sensibility. If you don't LIKE something, then get rid of it (trademe, ebay, buy/sell subforum, grind it up and smoke it) and replace it with another module that is closer to what you want. Part of the beauty of Euro is that in how anarchic it is (compared to Dotcom, Serge, or Buchla), there's going to be something for everyone.