Bionic Lester MK3

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daphnid
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Bionic Lester MK3

Post by daphnid » Tue May 12, 2020 12:04 am

There's no dedicated thread for this baby (a few specific topics in the harvestman sub but no general threads).

There's also not many demos out there featuring analog oscillators.

Curious to hear general thoughts and opinions, as well as tips and tricks, favorite uses. How does it sound compared to old 90s VA? I've always loved the filter on my Nord Rack 1 and wished I could process external audio with it. Hoping the preset morphing and continuous filter type morphing make it a little more flexible and musical than the Morpheus in terms of modulated, evolving sound.

What do we think about this funky filter?

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by jwm » Tue May 12, 2020 10:19 am

some thoughts:

i love the mk3. i love the mk2 as well, but mk3 is like a whole different thing really. still, they sit side by side.

the routing options are vast, i personally like the stereo routing and the series routing the best and use both fairly often. the 4 pole mode sounds especially fierce with the input gain controls dimed.

one of the best things about the mk3 is the comb filter, which is crazy considering it was an afterthought, but man, it sets it apart. and being able to morph into the comb from say bandpass, or even better yet, in series mode, pinging filter A in full resonant BP > filter B as comb filter...totally bananas and worth the price of admission imo.

i hardly ever touch the preset manager on the lester (though i use it to great extent on ph mk3 and kermit) - i find that its very quick and easy to route things on the fly and alter cv inputs (which is also wild, having potentially 3 cv inputs controlling cuttoff or resonance or gain or morph)

my only (small) gripe really, is that sometimes i've powered on my rig and found that the lester just straight up won't recognize any audio input...and i have to cycle through the routing options till it returns to normal operation, which is weird, and i wonder if thats related to the power supply more than the module itself. its only happened a couple times out of hundreds of power ons probably, and i haven't been able to faithfully replicate it, so ymmv.

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by daphnid » Tue May 12, 2020 4:54 pm

jwm wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 10:19 am

one of the best things about the mk3 is the comb filter, which is crazy considering it was an afterthought, but man, it sets it apart. and being able to morph into the comb from say bandpass, or even better yet, in series mode, pinging filter A in full resonant BP > filter B as comb filter...totally bananas and worth the price of admission imo.
Yeah being able to run 2 filters in series with all that CV input and mode morphing has me really excited. My issue with the Morpheus is that while it has huge range with almost 300 filter cubes, you cannot seamlessly morph between them. I understand why that's not possible but I'm starting to find it limiting.

I got the new Kermit a little while back and, while frustratingly glitchy and cramped, I've had a lot of fun exploring it, it's just got vibe, and so many tricks up its sleeve. Hoping to get similarly sucked into the BL.

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by starthief » Thu Jul 23, 2020 8:33 am

I'd been ignoring BL mk3, but now the comb filtering has my attention. I'm interested in terms of resonator/feedback sorts of applications -- areas tangent to physical modeling. I'm thinking about it vs Morpheus for future exploration.

Can BL mk3 track one volt per octave?

It seemed from the video that the comb filter lowers in frequency as the cutoff parameter increases, which is the inverse of the other filter types. That seems potentially problematic where it comes to morphing from a bandpass to a comb, if you're trying to track pitch...

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by 6667 » Thu Jul 23, 2020 9:47 am

daphnid wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 4:54 pm
I got the new Kermit a little while back and, while frustratingly glitchy and cramped, I've had a lot of fun exploring it, it's just got vibe, and so many tricks up its sleeve. Hoping to get similarly sucked into the BL.
a bit off topic but. kermit 3 is absolutely incredible for its size, didnt take long to pick up on the button combos either (figured most of them out without the manual). pretty surprising how little attention it gets compared to something like batumi

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by dysonant » Sat Jul 25, 2020 7:16 pm

Is anyone using the BL as a VCA with envelopes controlling the gain? I am getting some pretty serious clicks.

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by Vess » Sat Jul 25, 2020 7:28 pm

dysonant wrote:
Sat Jul 25, 2020 7:16 pm
Is anyone using the BL as a VCA with envelopes controlling the gain? I am getting some pretty serious clicks.
I’m also interested in this also gunning for BL as my next module

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by Tim Lairy » Sun Jul 26, 2020 1:59 am

Not had mine long. Juicy filter & very nice to smoothly move between filter types. Has to be said though.. if you modulate the mode at all fast this thing clicks & pops. A little too much for me personally to consider a ‘feature’..a shame as its great fun but does mean it falls down in a few scenarios for me.
Sounds like a similar issue to the vca scenario posted above.. i.e it cant update its state quick enough for many types of pretty standard modulation. Would love to be wrong about this & pointed to an obvious error on my part, otherwise it would be great if this got ironed out in an update

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by Carrousel » Sun Jul 26, 2020 4:21 am

6667 wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 9:47 am
daphnid wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 4:54 pm
I got the new Kermit a little while back and, while frustratingly glitchy and cramped, I've had a lot of fun exploring it, it's just got vibe, and so many tricks up its sleeve. Hoping to get similarly sucked into the BL.
a bit off topic but. kermit 3 is absolutely incredible for its size, didnt take long to pick up on the button combos either (figured most of them out without the manual). pretty surprising how little attention it gets compared to something like batumi

It works out a lot dearer than Batumi if you’re in Europe (around 50% more) so that may be part of it.
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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by dysonant » Sun Jul 26, 2020 5:00 pm

Tim Lairy wrote:
Sun Jul 26, 2020 1:59 am
... if you modulate the mode at all fast this thing clicks & pops. ...
I have noticed clicking when modulating frequency or resonance when the mode is set to Comb but I thought this was a result of the comb filter. Now you have me wondering about mode and if mine clicks when modulating that too? Either way, I am a little agitated right now with the click/pop behavior I am getting from the Gain. I love that you can use this as a VCA but it becomes rather useless with all the clicks.

Anyone else?

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by kindtree » Tue Aug 11, 2020 10:38 pm

I snagged the BL mk3 and the Kermit mk3 about a month ago and I’m really in love. I had recently downsized to a very small skiff and they really are the center piece of my synth. You can basically use them together as a mono synth and it’s incredibly fun and unique. Love the character of the filter and it’s resonance. Definitely can get a bit noisy but for the size and price it’s such a versatile filter. Very fun using it in stereo switching modes. Makes you think outside of the box a little.

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by Besfar » Fri Aug 14, 2020 2:19 am

Would be nice to know a bit more about the clicking issues reported. Seems like a nice, although expensive filter, but i like to fm things and for them to stay clean. I know its IME so not clean clean, but certainly not damn wtf is this unusable mess i paid 500 euro for dirty either :)

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by droningspaghettimonster » Sun Aug 16, 2020 2:24 pm

Vca pops are normal according to Scott, however we need to spam him with requests of making various vcf modes on each vcf in stereo mode... id love to have lp on left and morph slowly towards bp on right or something I feel like.... biggest module flaw by a mile rven though it surely sounds lovely.

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by euxine » Tue Aug 18, 2020 8:21 am

Man i love IME and Scott, but vca pops*couldn't* be a feature. I'm not putting my monitors and ears through that. 😥

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by Voggg » Mon Aug 24, 2020 12:24 am

Pops when it goes from zero into overdrive with a quick envelope? Or pops at any time when the vca is being modulated?
If it's like the vca performance on the Malgo and PH mk2, I can live with that. I never expected to use those as a substitute for "clean" analogue vcas.
I'm more concerned with the sound of the resonance and smooth cutoff performance.

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by Joelgrind » Mon Aug 24, 2020 12:42 am

Honestly, the comb filter in the MK3 is really cool but it’s a bit vanilla to me. I much prefer the previous one, that one is just nasty in a good way (to me). But what I dig about IDE/Harvestman is the new iterations of the modules are like new designs instead of the just updates. Basically: you need both lol

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by crumb dinger » Tue Aug 25, 2020 4:20 pm

Recently acquired one of these and operation is totally click/pop free as far as can tell. I'm on fw 1.2. Just tested it in all modes with modulation to every possible destination, various shapes into the CV ins, and it was totally fine. Am I just lucky? Sounds silky! Even morphing from the comb/delay-like behavior all the way back to LPF sounds smooth, which I wouldn't necessarily expect.

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by GregIcky » Tue Aug 25, 2020 4:49 pm

I’ve not noticed any clicks other than the comb “zipper” effect from sweeping the cutoff too fast (doesn’t take much) but that’s a byproduct of the way it’s implemented and is mentioned in the manual.

It can be a bit tricky to dial in the exact reaction to cv input, sometimes being to responsive or not enough. And I’ve noticed a tiny bit of a slow response to fast and heavy modulation. None of this was sufficient enough to be a deal breaker for me.

On a side note, I’ve found that if you overdrive the shit out of it in 4 pole mode I can actually get it to self oscillate to some degree. I had it humming so low the floor was rattling! Sweeping the cutoff I could feel the frequencies passing through various parts of my being. It was quite spiritual.

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by Besfar » Tue Sep 01, 2020 5:14 pm

What do you mean slow response to fast and heavy modulation? It doesnt track fm well?
Im drooling for this filter, and i dont known why. 90s virtual analogs mostly sucked imo, but still this seems so nice.

Can anybody FM this filter a bit hard and make a video/soundclip of it please? I fm everything all the time, so it has to be able to handle that for it to win me the broker than ever award.

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by Besfar » Mon Sep 14, 2020 9:24 am

Ah i see why you dont want to show off the lester under heavy fm; cause it doesnt take it so well :D
Ive aquired one now, and were also a bit sad when i first tried it. Pretty vanilla. But soon as i put it in series, im hooked.

There is something so good about the sound of this filter. Its just satisfying. Together with the honda, or any oscillator that makes a lot of noises, like the loquelic iteritas aswell. It really shines.
Scott seems to just make good stuff, whatever he makes.

Also, it sounds nice under not so fast audiorate, so thats ok :)

Edit:
Wow really good with the hertz donut too. Or just about anything. I thought about selling my hdmk3 (for the second time around), but now im keeping it.

In love with this filter :)

Also, no crackles or bad sound Artifacts to be found yet.

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Re: Bionic Lester MK3

Post by GregIcky » Tue Sep 22, 2020 1:02 am

Yeah, it can get crazy with the Hertz! I thought it was kinda vanilla too at first, same with the PH3, but then you add external FM and drop an octave on one.... you gotta really push it hard, but it pays off when you do... the Piston MK3, is what I mean.

I didn’t show it off cause my Mac is finally on it’s death bed. So I can’t record anything decent let alone upload. But yeah, my experience is that’s it’s a bit slow on the response, pry cause it’s digital. Wasp, Belgrad, etc seem to just react a hair faster. But the BL has its own golden moments that make it a keeper.

Series is ace. I like setting the comb on the top and then LP or near HP on the bottom. And overdriving the output. I got these super low frequency sounds out of the PH going thru it and it was like a doom metal downtuned thundering feedback sound. Like watching my studio monitors cause they might not handle it. :sb:

Never put the LIP thru it.... now you got me thinking 🤔

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