The current direction of Dotcom modules

Moog, Synthesizers.com, MOTM, Modcan, Moon and others..... Go big!

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Ockeghem
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Post by Ockeghem » Tue Jan 17, 2017 2:52 pm

Well, I was tempted by the Gate Math but ordered a couple of envelope++ modules in the meantime. I have other ways of generating gates and clock signals. But this envelope gives new timbres not easily producible otherwise. Same with the LFO++, which I have two of. Roger is going in a good direction and I hope he will explore new avenues including maybe some complex oscillator module(s).
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Post by Ramases » Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:10 pm

I think there is plenty of room for both the more traditional and the newer multi-function/compact modules. It's good to see Roger branching out a bit and hopefully attracting more customers by doing so.

Look at Modcan as a very good example in large format systems. You can get all the traditional one knob/jack per function modules you could possibly want. But then there are things like the Quad LFO, Quad Envelope, CV Recorder and other modules which give the lineup a different slant should one wish to go that direction.

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Post by alternating.bit » Tue Jan 17, 2017 4:29 pm

^ Cool, I didn't know that of Modcan. Touché

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Post by bandwidth » Tue Jan 17, 2017 4:49 pm

I think Roger is one of those endlessly creative types that is driven to do this stuff. I think he is one of those folks always asking, “What if?” It may not even have anything to do with business models or staying current. It may be that he just likes tinkering with circuits and making s**t happen. Then, he figures out how to make a buck off it!

Whatever, kudos to Roger! :tu:

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Post by XXXEsq » Tue Jan 17, 2017 4:51 pm

I am constantly impressed by Roger and his crew. Their customer service is the best I've ever encountered. They do what they say they are going to do, when they say they are going to do it. Seriously, who else in the modular world does that these days?
I bought an LFO++ and Gatemath shortly after they were released. The LFO++ seems to make its way into everything I do these days. I may need another! The Gatemath requires some diving, but its an amazing module once you understand it (and I don't have it 100% down yet!). I have an STG integer divider that I can use for basic clock divisions, but the Gatemath is so much more powerful. (I may sell the integer divider if I run short of space...)
Today, I ordered 2 of the new EGs. I think they are exceptionally well designed. Admittedly one can't always see every parameter by looking at the front panel; and that is something people feel strongly about. I don't quarrel with that desire. Its a matter of personal taste. But I don't generally adjust patches by sight; I listen. I can hear what's going on with my EGs, so I think these are going to be great - for me. YMMV
I think Roger is brilliant for going the increased flexibility route. This accomplishes at least 2 things... 1) It gives existing 5U people the ability to increase the functionality of their existing systems. Have an open space and can't decide on an EG, LFO or sequencer? Here you go... you can have all 3!
2) Moreover, it gives Euro(c)rack people a chance to purchase unique modules that are only available in 5U which should/could result in more 5U buyers. With more buyers comes increased scale and decreasing costs per unit.
It seems clear that Euro is dominant these days. I have a 3U opening in one of my racks and am considering buying a TipTop Happy Ending set and a few Euro modules that I can't duplicate in 5U. I far prefer 5U, but I think of modules as tools and will get what I need to do a job. Interfacing between the formats is (usually) pretty easy. If you look at the images of many prominent modular musicians' studios, most have combinations of large and small format modules. Trent Reznor, DeadMau5, Junky XL all come to mind.
I see increased 5U functionality as a win/win. If you want to stick to one knob/one function, you can buy a Q109.
But modular is - to me - about inspiration. I find Rogers latest offerings inspiring. I hope he keeps them coming.
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Post by TimeRaveler » Thu Jan 19, 2017 4:29 pm

I've always been a fan of knob-per-function interfaces and being able to see exactly whats going on at a glance. Its a lot of what I love about modular, especially MU format. The LFO++ is more dense but none of the functions are hidden - I love it.

Sooo, when I first saw this thing I decided it wasn't for me and the hidden (unlabeled) functions would give me a headache - I hate having to look stuff up...but after watching the videos and reading the manual I think I could deal with it.

It looks really cool and super useful. If I didn't already have a Corsynth Dual Looping EG, I'd probably get it straight away.

If only the labels could somehow change based on mode (printed overlays? tiny LCD screens?)

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Post by cftbl » Fri May 05, 2017 2:21 pm

Making a 2MU Q107 filter into a 1MU module works for me: http://synthesizers.com/q107a.html. I look forward to whatever come next.

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Post by josaka » Fri May 05, 2017 3:01 pm

I would love to see more concern with the tone and sound of these things..
it seems to be all "functions" or just a "2 pole filter" or an "oscillator" or some other generic names but they are not all the same (and yes gates and LFO's don't make sounds).

people collect/covet certain older machines for the sound they make generally ..not really the functions.. most new stuff is sold on the number of osc or audio rate or some other gizmos.. need to get back to tone being king :)
Last edited by josaka on Fri May 05, 2017 3:04 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Post by ranix » Fri May 05, 2017 3:03 pm

yeah, I would have left the q107 out of a 10u mobile rack before but it fits a lot better in 1u

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Post by ranix » Fri May 05, 2017 3:09 pm

josaka wrote:I would love to see more concern with the tone and sound of these things..
it seems to be all "functions" or just a "2 pole filter" or an "oscillator" or some other generic names but they are not all the same (and yes gates and LFO's don't make sounds).

people collect/covet certain older machines for the sound they make generally ..not really the functions.. most new stuff is sold on the number of osc or audio rate or some other gizmos.. need to get back to tone being king :)
I like the functions. I like using logic gates and switches and sequencers and mixers all together to make a patch that represents the entire musical piece. It's fun, like programming in hardware.

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Post by coyoteous » Sat May 06, 2017 6:04 pm

josaka wrote:I would love to see more concern with the tone and sound of these things..
it seems to be all "functions" or just a "2 pole filter" or an "oscillator" or some other generic names but they are not all the same (and yes gates and LFO's don't make sounds).

people collect/covet certain older machines for the sound they make generally ..not really the functions.. most new stuff is sold on the number of osc or audio rate or some other gizmos.. need to get back to tone being king :)
Ditto... no different sound really of any new S.C modules other than maybe the LFO in audio range (don't know)... a lot of different control possibilities potentially leading somewhat indirectly to different sound, though.

The new modules seem generally as much as a few times more functionally dense (not that there's really a direct comparison) as the old ones, but at a higher price.

For me, price was the most attractive thing before, though I still don't have very many (maybe $1000 worth at used prices).

They're the Doepfer of MU, without as wide of a selection, but with turnkey systems and few, if any, real holes in a complete long-standing product line.

Anyway, I consider everything else in MU boutique, by comparison... happy to be on the boutique side here, but the new modules blur that line.

If you want a big (even huge) system without much effort at a decent price, it's really the only game in town... I've pretty quickly talked myself out of that a few times since they came out.

I'd have liked to see more filter choices and some sort of AB driver/slave(s) oscillator bank system... although, at this point I doubt I'll have much more, if any.
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Post by josaka » Sat May 06, 2017 6:54 pm

ranix wrote:
josaka wrote:I would love to see more concern with the tone and sound of these things..
it seems to be all "functions" or just a "2 pole filter" or an "oscillator" or some other generic names but they are not all the same (and yes gates and LFO's don't make sounds).

people collect/covet certain older machines for the sound they make generally ..not really the functions.. most new stuff is sold on the number of osc or audio rate or some other gizmos.. need to get back to tone being king :)
I like the functions. I like using logic gates and switches and sequencers and mixers all together to make a patch that represents the entire musical piece. It's fun, like programming in hardware.
me too.. but we don't buy a minimoog say for its "functions" or a SEM or other classics.. we buy them for the individual machines sounds.. I would buy more
"coloured" oscillators or filters.. just saying its a 2 pole an SVC or a ring mod means little really .. don't get me wrong most sounds great.. just very hard to differentiate.. its not an S.C thing more than anyone else it seems to be pretty much across the board.

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Post by ranix » Sat May 06, 2017 8:35 pm

that's why I bought a big ass dotcom system instead of a minimoog :sb:

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Post by coyoteous » Sat May 06, 2017 11:54 pm

Ramases wrote:I think there is plenty of room for both the more traditional and the newer multi-function/compact modules. It's good to see Roger branching out a bit and hopefully attracting more customers by doing so.

Look at Modcan as a very good example in large format systems. You can get all the traditional one knob/jack per function modules you could possibly want. But then there are things like the Quad LFO, Quad Envelope, CV Recorder and other modules which give the lineup a different slant should one wish to go that direction.
Yeah, but they're white and MOTM size (or black/odd size in original banana), propriety power connection, and from what I can tell... effectively out of business for years.

You're absolutely right about the module selection and complete system potential, though.
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Post by Dcramer » Sun May 07, 2017 1:39 am

Although I'm a Euro guy, as soon as I stumbled onto one of Roger's videos I immediately gravitated to these new module. I would need a few of these dense designs if I went MU and I'm certain I would start with Roger's stuff. :party:

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Post by stoke175 » Mon May 08, 2017 2:51 pm

Dcramer wrote:Although I'm a Euro guy, as soon as I stumbled onto one of Roger's videos I immediately gravitated to these new module. I would need a few of these dense designs if I went MU and I'm certain I would start with Roger's stuff. :party:
totally. im from Euro too and i looked at the ++ and said " i want that one" i didnt really even know why but have since discovered the multi funtionality
imagine how fantastic that is - - shopped like and idiot but soon discovered i made a great choice ---Yay!

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Post by Mirolab » Tue May 09, 2017 12:36 pm

Yes... I want to get the Q107A conversion.... a reasonable sacrifice.

I'd like to see .COM also do a Noise+S&H combo panel.
Or maybe add a mini mixer to the ring mod... just to make it more useful.

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Post by Ramases » Tue May 09, 2017 1:23 pm

coyoteous wrote:
Yeah, but they're white and MOTM size (or black/odd size in original banana), propriety power connection, and from what I can tell... effectively out of business for years.

You're absolutely right about the module selection and complete system potential, though.
They do fit quite easily into dotcom cases should one wish to expand in that direction :)

The Modcan power connector is a standard, readily available, 3 pin MTA connector - nothing at all proprietary about it.

Hopefully Bruce will continue to recover and they'll be back in production sometime. It's sad that Bruce has been ill and that such great modules are hard to get hold of at the moment.

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Post by Dave Peck » Tue May 09, 2017 1:29 pm

Personally, I think Krips1 / Oakley has consistently hit the 'sweet spot' in MU format modules regarding module density, versatility, and variety of sonic characteristics, all without resorting to cumbersome 'hidden functions'.

Things like the Sample Slew, which has only three knobs, one switch and eight jacks, all in just 1U width, but offers Sample/Hold, Track/Hold, slew generator, noise source, and clock source.

Or the Multimix with three knobs in 1U width, but can be a four channel mixer with inverting on every channel, or four separate attenuators with inverting, or something in between.

And they have SIX different sounding filters, all in just 1U width, many of which include a function that varies the response from 1 pole LPF through BPF to 4 pole LPF. Plus stuff like the VC phase shifter, a simple overdrive module, and a complex distortion module (discontinuity).

The next time I have a pile of money for new modules, most of it will probably go to Krisp1, plus a Rossum Morpheus filter repanelled in MU, but I do think Dotcom's new and more dense offerings are a really good addition to the product line.

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Post by coyoteous » Tue May 09, 2017 10:10 pm

Ramases: Yeah, best wishes for Bruce and Modcan... I should have said non-standard power (for the time).

Things could have been way different if he hadn't semi-straddled synthesizers.com and MOTM (black and picked one or the other panels/power).

Don't get me wrong, I've never experienced either Modcan format in person, but I've been watching all along (since I was but a wee laddy), and appreciate the greatness from afar.

The prices were/are a little on the high side for me, but the (off?) white thing was the ultimate no go here, unless maybe a whole row/system/sidecar.
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Post by coyoteous » Tue May 09, 2017 11:05 pm

Dave Peck: Krisp1/Oakley in MU addict here (I have some Oakley in bridechamber and stooge MOTM, too... functionally the same, but lacking the extra class of Ben's re:synthesis panels).

Anyway, I have a full rack-row/mini-subsystem of MU: 1of3 and slimB VCOs, noise/filters, diode ladder, versatile ramp and quad VCA.

(next below that is a mixed mostly boutique/etched row by manufacturer with 2x SSL VCOs, STG mixer/ARP filter/slot for soon-to-arrive active mult, finishing off with a S.C FFB aid I use as a little behind-the-scenes patchbay for MTA connections and two S.C EGs)

Also... some other full rows of Moon, a couple of mostly COTK, one of S.C utility modules, and a bunch of Synthtech MOTM and some other MOTM format (sorry to go on about all that, but once I got started, I felt compelled to finish in at least a general summary).

I like them all, even the synthesizers.com (especially for what it cost), but I do have extra fondness for etched MU over painted/silk-screened, and have only original-style MOTM panels (polene w/splatter).

In rereading that, it sounds more elitist than it is... back to K1/O: there's just a lot great design, history and build there thanks to Tony and Paul.
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Post by KSS » Wed May 10, 2017 1:04 am

I'd always assumed the current direction of Dotcom modules was the same as other modules. Electrons seeking higher potential and holes going the other way. :hihi:
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Post by coyoteous » Wed May 10, 2017 1:31 am

OK, that is funny! (additionally to me thinking of my self as an unintentional a-hole a lot of the time: self-destructive/seeking a lower level subconsciously)

Back to Oakley, Krisp1, etc.: Oakley panels are MOTM grid pushed Tony's special way first, and translated to MU... I think that has a lot to do with the appealing functional density, too.

In fact, I think it works even better in MU with mooogy panel separation, offset labels, switch boxes, etc.

It's all good... err, uh... Allgood! (and Darrow and paults)
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