There are several ways to generate percussion sounds with Eurorack modules:
1. Drum modules: These modules are specifically designed to create drum sounds and typically include various sound engines, such as sample-based, synthesis-based, and physical modeling. They can also have built-in sequencers and triggers for creating complex rhythms.
2. Sampler modules: These modules allow you to load samples of your drum sounds and manipulate them in various ways, such as pitch-shifting, time-stretching, and granular synthesis.
3. Digital synthesis-based modules: These modules use various techniques, such as FM, wavetable, or granular synthesis, to create unique and complex drum sounds.
4. Noise generators: These modules can generate white, pink, or other types of noise, which can then be processed and shaped into percussion sounds.
Classic percussion sounds like the 808 and 909 can be re-created by using drum modules that are clones of the circuits in these classic drum machines.
Synthesizer voice Eurorack modules contain all the necessary components to create a complete synthesizer voice, such as oscillators, filters, and envelopes. In addition, these modules can be connected to other Eurorack modules to create a more complex patch or used by themselves as a complete voice.
Synth voice modules create and shape audio signals through various electronic components, such as oscillators, filters, and envelopes. The oscillators create the basic audio waveforms, such as sine, sawtooth, and square waves, which are then processed by filters and envelopes within one module to shape the sound. The circuits chosen are sometimes from a specific vintage synthesizer, allowing a classic's original sound and personality to reside in the Eurorack system.
One advantage of buying a synthesizer voice Eurorack module is that it is a compact and all-in-one solution for creating a complete synthesizer voice. This can save space and simplify the process of building a modular
Until recently, it never occurred to me to use a ring modulator as a VCA. I typically have sizable systems with dedicated VCAs. But if I think about it, why wouldn’t it work? A ring modulator multiplies the X input signal by the Y or carrier signal. Essentially, this is how a VCA works, but the ring mod does not have a CV or gain control. Those with a small system already know this trick and save themselves space in their rack.
But what about a vacuum tube ring modulator? It’s a very different design than a solid state ring mod, even though they both perform a multiplication of the X and Y signals. The module uses tubes and transformers in a 1930s circuit design originally purposed for sending multiple telephone calls down one telephone line.
When I first began my modular synth journey, I had no clue what I was doing. Now mind you, it wasn’t because I was unfamiliar with synthesis. In fact, I was well-versed in sound design. My first synthesizers were the Access Virus TI2 and Roland V-Synth—neither were “simple” synths. Instead, both share complex menus, matrix routing, and effects engines, to name a few. To this day, I spend hours programming the Virus and V-Synth, as well as other complex synths, for hours until I get a “good” patch. So why did I have such a hard time at the beginning of modular synthesis?
I underestimated how quickly my system would grow. At the time, I looked at my budget and decided on a Doepfer low-cost wood case. It had a total of 252HP or 3 rows of 84HP. For some readers, that may sound like a sizable case, and it is! With proper planning, I would be able to obtain all of the modules I needed.