Thanks, Ronin1973. The M32 does have a noise source in addition to the one VCO, but the 1U module you mention looks like it has a lot more than just noise to offer. Also, thanks for the recommendation on the Mimitec Digitalis. I'm definitely going to eventually want a dedicated sequencer module that's more intuitive to use on the fly than the M32's sequencer.

I definitely plan to take it very slow as I have a lot to learn about these modules before understanding where to go next, but I've seen enough warnings on this site and others to know that is easier said than done.

I had no idea that this Modular News section existed. Thanks!!!

Yeah, I noticed the 80mm depth on the modules’ page and thought it was weird. I haven’t measured the actual depths myself, but the half of the 6U Rackbrute without the bus board is the deepest the case gets, so I’m guessing that 75mm is the maximum depth.

The Rackbrute manual (and the module page on modular grid) seems like it has inconsistencies in general. Pay close attention to the Power Supply section of the manual. It seems like you need to distribute your power between the two rows of pin connectors on the board. This way you don’t overload the power supply.

Maybe someone with more Rackbrute experience can clarify?

I don't see a noise source on the M32. Maybe I'm overlooking it. But Intellijel makes a 1U sample/hold/slew/clock/noise module. It would be a great addition.

When you're ready to grow: think about effects like reverbs, delays, overdrive/distortion. Also a small clockable sequencer like Mimitec Digitalis would go well for some creative fun. Sequencers are great sources for modulation apart from generating notes.

Take it slow and experiment recklessly. This is a good entry point but you'll probably push the M32 out of the case within 6 months to a year.

Good day Garfield, Lugia and all the rest of the fine people on here !

Indeed, the A-160-2 is a much better option, I changed that and added the A-166 too. Crazy rhythmic patterns, here I come :)

As getting rid of the Doepfer mixer was maybe a little too minimalist, I put the A-138p and A-138o back in the setup. As much as I'd like to add a comparator or another small FX module, looks like by adding the mixer back and the logic module I filled up all the space, I even had to move the Clep Diaz up to get everything to fit in there. Oh God :)

Updated version:
ModularGrid Rack

I got an email back form Erica Synths stating that they could maybe offer a discount for a large purchase and I'll see if I can source some modules from the 2nd hand market to reduce costs, but now I feel comfortable about the setup.

I'm repeating myself but I don't care: THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP ! You guys made my day, for a few days in a row :)

Cheers !

PS: not sure if you have the same issue: on my machine the Pico MODs are not shown properly in the preview above, gotta click on it to view the rack which shows the modules properly.

Just tried Firefox from my wife's notebook, and, surprise surprise, no problems whatsoever !!
So it's definitely Firefox on my PC that doesn't do what it ought to.
Think I'll have to de-install/re-install it completely. Oh well ....

Thanks anyway, MG!

also, watch your module depths, as the Rackbrutes really only have about 40mm in practicality.
-- Lugia

According to the Arturia website —
The max depth available on a RackBrute 6U is:

53mm on the upper part. (power bus)
75mm on the lower part. (no power bus)

-- Footage

That's so weird. The Rackbrute's own power supply is listed as 80mm Deep..

Firefox should work. I have tested it on MacOS and Win10. I haven't heard of others with this problem yet, but maybe they just did not report.

Thanks, Lugia! Any thoughts on the Pico MScale for M32/Dixie pitch tracking? Could I replace with Disting mk4 (which seems to do precision adding and a lot more) instead?

I greatly appreciate this advice. It's given me a lot to think about in terms of future direction and helped relieve some anxiety about the footprint of the M32. For now, it provides some functionality that I don't have in other modules (e.g. MIDI, Sequencer). But it sounds like eventually I should replace with more efficient modules.

Thread: Tension

Hi Wedoh,

Yeah... Xaoc devices, I have a few modules of them, not the Belgrad and Zadar though but will keep them in mind, especially the Belgrad. Once I listened to your music and sent you my previous message, you motivated me with your music to play around with my NW1 and though I managed to get some interesting and nice sounds out of it, not so nice/beautiful as you manage to do that with the NW1. So thanks a lot for your information, I will have another look at it and see what I can manage to get out of the NW1 :-)

I put the NW1's output through the spring reverb (Stingray2) of Intellijel, also quite nice, missing a delay module though, so I need to look into that.

Kind regards, Garfield.
-- GarfieldModular

Thank you very much Garfield!
I do enjoy the NW-1. Do you have anything recorded that i could listen to with the Stingray? Sounds like an awsome combo!
At first i did not get the NW-1 to work for me. But some twiddling made me found a sweet spot.

This is what ill do
- Change the start position for the wavetable to around 12 o clock, or find a sweetspot
- Set scale to middle
- Change keyboard tracking to like 50%
- Dampen some spectrum and brilliance
- And try out the higher number wavetables, like wavetable "22".

Change prime settings like that and you will notice it starts drifting without any pitch CV or modulation inputs. From there you can do allkind of crazy stuff with modulation. You can play the NW-1 through pitch, noise and simple travel/position modulation, without any pitch CV! :-) And when you run out of wavetables, you can always make your own.

The sound is so rich, so sending it into effect processors really make harmonics going. Something reeeeally cool is to send the NW-1 into Mutable instriments "Clouds". And play with the settings. Make it really drone´y.
Here this Soundcloud link for an example of that.

I have yet to try each of my 31 racks, but the problem definitely occurs on all that I have checked so far (approx. 10).
Just gave Chrome a try and, funnily, it worked like a charm.

I'd like to stay with Firefox, though, for a number of reasons.

Am I the only one with this problem?

Thread: delete?

ok, I take note.....
but.... not very practical, I must say....
also, not very hard to write that script, no? maybe....
nice day

Check also the Modular News section here:

Thread: delete?

Currently you can only delete messages one by one.

Does the problem occur with ANY of your racks? If it is a special rack can you send me the link.
Does it work in Chrome/Chromium browser?

Thread: autotune?

does any1 know if using scales to quantize the pitch shifting through the v/oct input on nebulae could act as an autotune of sorts for an audio signal??? pls help

First up, don't get used to the idea of the M32 being in the 7U case. It's a lousy idea. It wastes space that needs to be used for modules which don't have a case, for starters. Then if you factor in the cost of rehousing it in the 7U, given that it already has a case + power, your M32 would then wind up costing you about $765, figuring $599 street for it + about $165-ish for the 60 hp it would occupy in the 7U. Not a good deal.

The rest of the modules are actually quite sensible. The Quad VCA is the correct choice, fyi; the ALM Tangle's VCAs are all linear only. It's necessary to have those, but mainly for CVs and modulation signals where you want that response. Exponential VCAs are the ones needed for audio, because of how our ears respond to apparent loudness (logarithmically). By using the Quad VCA, you can select either linear for your CVs and mod signals, OR exponential to control audio levels...or anything in between due to the variable response controls. Besides, the Tangle costs $10 more.

The DixieII+ is actually a decent choice as well. If you plan to feed the M32 through the 7U's audio path, that VCO will serve very well to double the single Moog VCO to allow for detuning and sync and other things that will be pretty useful to getting a "bigger" sound. In fact, I would suggest controlling the DixieII+ from the M32's pitch CV and then feeding its audio back through the M32's VCF and just presuming that it should be a doubling VCO for the M32. While the Mother 32 does have that Moog LP only has the one VCO, which means it only has ONE part of the "Moog sound". Using the DixieII+ along with it fixes that issue to a decent extent.

As far as other VCOs/sources...wavetable VCOs aren't a bad idea as long as you can "scan" the wavetables, PPG-style. That's a big aspect of that sound, and one that comes to mind that has that ability is The Harvestman's Piston Honda, now in rev 3. Another route would be a pair of complex VCOs, something akin to the Make Noise DPO or Sputnik's Dual Oscillator; these are more akin to Don Buchla's 200-series oscillators, in which you have ample internal crossmod possibilities that can create loads of possible timbres before ever getting out of the VCO itself! Very convenient! But don't neglect other exotic possibilities as well, such as multi-op FM VCOs, thru-zero FM-capable ones, phase distortion oscillators (ala the Casio CZ series), etc. LOTS of possible directions there, from simple to utterly insane.

But this is coming along...just take this process slowly! It's not a race; consider ideas carefully, ask for advice/ideas, and the like. And don't expect the first build to be THE ONE...because it won't be. There's always room for improvement, along many fronts.

Yep, divider goooood...but choose the more capable A-160-2 instead. This gives you not just the usual suboctave division, but an integer count + divide by primes. Then, by adding a simple Boolean logic module such as Doepfer's A-166, you can combine the outputs from the divider + your regular clock to create more complex crossrhythmic gate patterns. Even better would be to add a comparator to this lineup, which would allow you to track voltage curves coming off of the Maths or the Black Modulator or EG to generate a gate pulse when the voltage crosses a determined level. Put this all together with the logic gates, and the rhythmic timing aspect will be bonkers!

And do put the A-138p and o back in there. The Quadratt is great for summing down the VCOs or attenuverting CVs, but it's not much on audio when compared to a proper stereo performance mixer. It's more of a "utility" mixer, plus offset generator and inverter, while the 138 series is very much audio-specific and allows you to build up a stereo image for your stereo Line Out. By feeding the A-138o to the Black DSP, then going from there to the Line Out and using the DSP's wet/dry knob (or CV control over it) to balance your stereo effects against the dry mix, you'll have loads of control over global effects...and STILL get to use the AUX send/return setup in the A-138p/o combo for something like a mono delay (something simple but with CV, like a Dreadbox White Line Echo) that you can mix in on a per-channel basis. Pretty cool, pretty neat!

But yeah, this is rapidly approaching "button 'er up" time. Think about those last two ideas, then I concur with Garfield...this'll be a damn fine system!

Yeah, the Intellijel 7u x 104 seems spendy...but let's look at it for a moment.

First up, it's powered. And not just powered in a typical way, but with an utterly bonkers amperage capacity: 3A on both 12V rails, 1.5A on the +5. Now, that's would be rather difficult (but not impossible [although very irresponsible!]) to overload that, even on the inrush at switch-on. A more typical supply in that size of case would give you perhaps half that current capacity. Also, the bus board IS the power supply...this means that you won't tend to have any power components near audio ones in a way that can cause noise/garbage. It also means there's basically NO internal cabling for your DC busses, ergo less to go wrong. See here for more: ain't no joke!

Next, check the construction: all aluminum attache case style, with a lid with enough depth to let you keep a patch in place during transport. Predesigned for a second case to attach, too, via Intellijel's bracket system. But then there's the I/O on this, which gives you MIDI I/O/T + USB MIDI, stereo audio in and out, and your power inlet/switch...all of which is kept off of the patchpanel, meaning more space! And the case comes with the necessary 80W Meanwell "line lump", which simplifies need to match up the right AC supply for the Intellijel TPS80 supply inside.

So, sure...$649 street. But what you get for that $649 in both hardware AND ease of use...worth it! Also, keep in mind that while you can shuffle modules relatively easily, your case is something you'll be locked into for a while. Get something solid and very capable to start with, and you'll be happy with it for years.

A synth designed to work like a bass guitar. Takes advantage of the surplus of "quad" modules out there. Bass has four strings so we've got four pressure point pads, triggering four envelopes, controlling four VCAs, fed by four Oscillators which are pitched by the four CV converted midi voices. It then runs into a compressor. Because what's a bass without a compressor. Then into a parametric EQ with all the channels running into a make noise panner, so that you can get some interesting harmonic tremolo options.

Hi Diego,

Looks nice! You got yourself a nice system there :-)

There is just one thing left...

Buy it and enjoy it ;-)

Have fun and kind regards, Garfield.

Hi ! Great input here :)

Here we go, v3:
ModularGrid Rack

Lugia, you have a point about the price difference for the black modules and I like the idea of using the aluminum panels as dividers.

The 7U case has been on my mind all day to be honest. It just makes more sense, I guess, the 1Us are great to get utility modules on the cheap while freeing up some 3U space down below. In case I want to get crazy in the future, they have a system to mount a second one on top. The case itself is pricier but it seems like it's worth it, so v3 has changed case :)

Intellijel has a 1U tile for headphones. But you'll have to split your stereo signal from your mix to the headphones and your 1U audio input. I think a better choice would be getting a 3U unit that has independent headphone and line outputs with separate control over each and keep the Intellijel in and out for line level gear you want to bring into your system like external reverbs or traditional synths.

-- Ronin1973

1U Audio I/O + 1U heaphones module + 1U buffered mult seems to get me what I want, all in the same space, and I feel like having a 3U line output module and unused line I/O at the back of the case would be sort of weird, right ?

The Mimetic Digitalis has replaced the Vox Digitalis, seems like a better option, thanks for pointing me to it (I had actually watched that video, not sure why I dismissed it). I also added a Clep Diaz, the module seems like a lot of fun (I watched the video only about that module, from Rick Tinez as well). I couldn't resist addind a Lapsus Os too.

I could use the 1U Quadratt as a mixer (and get rid of the Doepfer A-138 modules for now). Not getting me a 1U µMIDI would be folly at that point.

A second Pico Mod is back too, it's cheap enough. I removed the Batumi for now, but a clock divider made its way into the setup, I think it will come in very handy.

How does it look ? :)

I also have the Erica Synth Dual FX. But i don't like it that much. I would prefer a nice delay Module like the 4MS DLD and for Reverb something like the Erbe Verb. Both of these Modules are 20HP. I need more Space.

-- Quantum_Eraser

I've been looking at the Erica Synth Dual FX for a while but it seemed a bit underwhelming. What is your issue with it ?
Yeah, more space, I suppose I'll have that problem too at some point :)

Hi Marco,

I like to appologise to you for my earlier feedback. I can see you definitely had this better planned and looked through than I expected, so please forget my comments regarding that matter. Regarding the 3rd row for space wise you planned but didn't show it, that is a good one :-) That keeps you tight to a 2 rows planning with future possibilities to extend a few modules in your 3rd row.

Good luck with finalising your planning and I hope you enjoy your hopefully soon modular system :-)

Kind regards, Garfield.

Just bought a Kotelnikov from @Plexusgel. Very accurate description, no surprises there! Very responsive and super fast shipment. Recommended!

First of all I want to sincerely thank you guys for all of your feedbacks. I never ever thought I would so much response and I swear it means the world to me in this careful plannig phase. So, again, THANK YOU.

Starting with the size matter. Yes, while putting together this rack, I immediately felt that this size would unavoidably cause strong constrains and that very soon I would have need more space. Because of this, I confirm you that I actually was already looking to a 3 row case, as you are suggesting. Nontheless, I decided to put together this smaller rack in order to leave the third row for a time where I have deeper awareness of my musical direction and aspiration. I understand that it would surely be strategically convenient to plan a rack thinking directly to all of the space you may have available, but to me it felt just a shot too long to take and that I’d prefer to let the rack grow naturally over time. Right now, by the way, I’m looking at a very interesting offer in my hometown as a local studio is selling a 9U 104hp at a very good price, but that would be WAY bigger than the one I posted so I’m not totally sure about it. Aside from that, Ronin’s and Lugia’s suggestion of the 7U Intellijel case really blew my mind, as I see it as a way to maximize the potentiality of my build without twist its nature. I’ll surely think about it even if the only downside i see is the HUGE price of that case, to the point it becomes a crucial factor to take into consideration.

Concerning the mosorensen observations, I can confirm that the lack of percussive elements was “intentional” to a certain extent. Having to deal with a “restricted” number of modules, I tried to focus on a direction as clearely defined as possible, that being ambients and textures creation around melodic sequences. So this was the natural result of that thinking process, but I’m obviously completely open to the possibility to change my mind while building the case! As you mentioned, I think the Disting can be very useful to test that out as well many other features that can make me understend how other modules work I guess. I’ll also surely think about an alternative to Links! I didn’t thought about the stackable cables as a permanent alternative, thanks!

Finally, talking about the sequencer, I clearely admit that I don’t have a clear full picture of all the possibilities out there. What I can say is that while patching in VCV Rack, very often it come’s out my more traditional musical background. For example, I very often patch using Marbles and that modules really opened my eyes about what modular “can do” and how it can completely revolutionize the way I compose music. But still, there is always a time during my patching when I feel the need to lay down precise notes phrases to add to at a sequence or as an additional layer as fast as possible, so I guess that in this phase I still want to be able to have a deep control on the sequencing, even with external controller if I feel the need. That comes at a cost as basically the only randomness in this build may come from the randomize function of the hermod itself I guess, but that’s how I feel I need to start right now. Having this in mind, if you have alternatives to point me to, I would be really interested in hearing them.

Thanks again to all of you.

Thanks, Quantum_Eraser. Good call on the effects. I wonder if there's a way for me to squeeze something on the more basic side without breaking into that bottom level? I know there is a 1U digiverb module, so that may be an option. I'll definitely check out the ALM Tangle Quartet as well.

I always have fun playing wavetable synths, so I'll give those oscillators a look as a potentially better compliment to the Mother-32.

For more unusual stuff check out the DIY Stuff of Look Mum No Computer on Youtube.

He is the Dr. Frankenstein of Modular and much more :-)

Hi there

I'm also a beginner and there's not much advice I can give :-)

But if you want so save 4HP you can get the ALM Tangle Quartet. It's a Quad VCA like the Intellijel but you don't have adjustable response from linear to exponential. I have the Tangle myself and it does its Job :-)

You have a Moog and you plan to get a dixie. Maybe you could consider a Wavetable Oscillator instead of the Dixie?

Don't worry about the placement. Just put the Modules where you think its best and then you will see if you want to swap.


I see you don't have any effects like Delay or Reverb.

I use muffwiggler for any industry news or sometimes advice on how to approach a certain patch.

I use this site for planning racks.

Lastly VCV Rack to figure out what I need, and in the case that VCV Rack has a digital equivalent to a hardware item, I will play around with it on VCV Rack before I buy it, so as to avoid buying something that I either do not need or don't understand how to use.

Hi there

You will need more space sooner than later :-)

I just finished my first rack about 1 month ago. I see you are interested in the Mantis.

I also have the Mantis and it's already full. So when i want to try a new module i have to get rid of an other module (that's stupid)

Tiptop Audio will release a dual Mantis Bracket later this month. So you can mount another Mantis case on Top.

Thats probably the way i will go in the near future.

What I realizes so far is that I don't really like small Modules. I've got a Monsoon Clouds but i would prefer the Original Clouds.
(Modules like the 2hp Pluck and the Arp are ok)

I also have the Erica Synth Dual FX. But i don't like it that much. I would prefer a nice delay Module like the 4MS DLD and for Reverb something like the Erbe Verb. Both of these Modules are 20HP. I need more Space.

I bought a Mother-32 six months ago to test the modular waters and ended up buying an Intellijel 7U 104 hp case with a few 1U modules yesterday. Although I have experience with semi-modular now, I'm still basically a noob when it comes to Eurorack. My goal is to set up a beginner rack to learn the fundamentals before wading into more specialized modules down the line (I even purchased the blank plates as an additional reminder to avoid impulse purchases). Here's what I'm planning to start with:

ModularGrid Rack

Note that I haven't ordered the Pico MScale, Dixie, Maths, or Quad VCA, so I could still reverse those decisions. I don't have any firm plans for the future but am intrigued by the idea of adding drums (maybe paired with Trigger Riot) and am not married to the Mother-32 long term. I love the sound but find the sequencer difficult to use and wish it had more than one VCO. My questions are:

1) Any general feedback on this design?

2) Any suggestions for future expansion?

3) Does the placement of the modules matter much, and if so is this layout sane, or is there a better way to go?

4) Does the Pico MScale make sense here? It's designed to improve tracking between Mother-32 and other VCO, but I suspect there may be a better way. Do I have anything in this design besides the MScale that could do this (e.g. Quadratt or Maths)?

Any advice or insight greatly appreciated.

Hey Ronin

Whoops, Ok. Hopefully this will work now:

ModularGrid Rack

Thanks for pointing that out


Check your link again. Go back and fix it as well as your first link. If you view your own rack, you can go up to the URL and copy that like so. The URL should end in numbers. This one ends in 959778
ModularGrid Rack

It makes it a whole lot easier to check out your rack and look up the modules.

Intellijel has a 1U tile for headphones. But you'll have to split your stereo signal from your mix to the headphones and your 1U audio input. I think a better choice would be getting a 3U unit that has independent headphone and line outputs with separate control over each and keep the Intellijel in and out for line level gear you want to bring into your system like external reverbs or traditional synths.

Cookies are allowed, no adblocker active. Tried with and without "keep me logged in".

I'm without a clue here ...

Thread: delete?

is there a way to delete all the messages, together from the in or outbox, please?
thanks for the reply

Sounds like a cookie issue, but sadly I am not sure. Do you have an adblocker that might interfere with the site? Did you try the "keep me logged in" option?


I am currently moving from IE to Firefox.
However, Firefox keeps telling me that I have to login (which of course I have), whenever I try to edit one of my racks or make a new one.
I have looked everywhere in Firefox, have enabled Cookies, Javascript, and everything else that looks like it could have something to do with my problem.

With IE, everything still works just fine.

Any idea?

Ey up

Thanks for your advice Ronin.

I take on board that I don't know as much as you guys.

However through playing with what I have already I have come up with a revised rack plan.

Would you guys say this is a closer to a good/versatile/capable system?

I've attached a link to it here:

Again, thanks in advance for your help.


Hi Diego, Lugia and Ronin1973,

You are welcome and no problem :-)

Yes, perhaps I was a bit too negative on those Pico modules, I see you reduced them enormously now in your 2nd version. You might want to follow up on Lugia’s comment to go back to two of those Pico Mod modules; naturally up to you, at the end you need to be happy with your setup.

Lugia, thanks a lot for correcting me here :-)

Ronin1973, thanks a lot for sharing that video, nice one!

Back to you Diego, about that Befaco Output module, if you follow up Lugia’s advice to go for the Intellijel 7U case, you could leave it out. If you stick with 6U then you might want to keep it.

I got them both the Intellijel Audio I/O which indeed has no headphones, so that’s why I took as a second output module the Befaco for the headphones connection. The Befaco can be used for input audio as well as for output audio however not simultaneously. That’s why I kept the Befaco together with my Intellijel Audio I/O. With the later you can do both at the same time, getting your sound out of the modular system into your mixer but also getting input signal into your modular system.

That brings me to your point you mentioned that you want to put your desktop synth output directly into the Black Hole module input. I am not 100% sure on the exact details but modular audio is a slightly bit different on voltage levels than line audio (which is your desktop synth most likely). I forgot which one has higher levels and which one the lower voltage levels but that’s why I recommend you to use an Audio Input/Output module so you don’t need to worry about that.

Yes, it’s a pity that Intellijel’s Audio I/O doesn’t have a headphone connection. I remember I saw one or two modules who can do that, if I am not mistaken, just go here on to the modules section and try to look for one that can do both (input & output audio + headphones) instead of your Befaco I mean, but up to you. I could imagine that you can solve these problems by going for that Intellijel 7U case instead; just check out the options & possibilities.

He, he, fair enough about the TipTop Audio Mantis case with 2 rows of 104 HP. Of course you always can buy an additional single row 104 HP skiff case but I think on a per HP cost calculation that’s not going to make it cheaper. I don’t know where you live however I live in Germany and I calculated for most of the cases (that interested me, the rather bigger ones I must admit) the per HP price and I came to the conclusion that the Doepfer A-100 low cost cases are the cheapest on a per HP basis; not sure if that’s for every country the same, it might not be the case. If I remember well then indeed as second TipTop Audio came with their case. You can easily check that yourself (in case that’s important to you).

Regarding that Doepfer A-138pv module you don’t have to buy straight away two of them however if in the future you need more than 4 channels then it’s just easy to add one of those A-138pv modules and you got yourself an 8 channel-mixer, that’s how I meant it but you could easily start with just one A-138pv first, that’s exactly what I am doing now too, got only one A-138p at the moment (I just planned space for a second A-138p for future usage/extension).

Since it looks like you want to stick first with two rows ;-) Perhaps you should think about if you really need three envelopes (A-140v, Black VC EG+ext. & Batumi), perhaps take one of those 3 out first, build up some experience with two of them and then consider if you need a third one? I usually wouldn’t ask you to reduce the number of envelopes but in this case if you stick with the small space you might want to be a bit more space concerned and keep some “reserved space” left for future modules, if you know what I mean?

Yes would be nice if you could let me know about those mentioned 3 modules if you like those :-) That Fusion module from Erica Synths interests me too I must admit, let me know about that one too :-)

Have fun with the system and keep us updated how it goes, kind regards, Garfield.

Well... maybe Plaits is the way to go... but let me point you in another -possible- direction. Plaits is a digital module with various different waveforms to choose from. It's a good choice if you want some "bread and butter" sounds as a source.

A "through-zero" oscillator may give you some interesting waveforms and modulation to add to your arsenal. I bought an Intellijel Rubicon 2. It also has lots of interesting modulation sources. You can use it as a standard VCO. But things can get fairly interesting when you throw some modulation at it and use it in non-traditional ways. It also runs in LFO-mode so you can create some very interesting LFOs as well.

Noise Engineering offers some interesting digital sound sources as well. But you'll have to pick and choose carefully as some of them might be a little too aggressive sounding if you're looking to pair them with another sound source.

No matter what sound source you go with, I'd definitely add another mixer module as you may want to mix your oscillators before you get to your filter and then possibly after the filter with effects.

Looks like you did your homework in VCV Rack pretty well!
-- Lugia

This makes me uber happy. There's been a rash of posts from people who haven't done their homework. It's nice to go over the fine points of a build rather than telling someone to go back to the drawing board.

More posts like the original post please! :)

There are some great comments above so I'm not going to pile on. But here are a couple of this in no sense of priority.

The Intellijel 104HP 7U case is also available in black. (I'm sensing a theme)
Intellijel makes some nifty stuff in the 1U that includes a vector scope, a noise + sample/hold/slew module, and even some USB tiles that are great for mounting a USB reading lamp or two. You'll want that since your color scheme is going to be pretty dark to begin with.

For additional modulation you may want to check out Noise Engineerings "Clep Diaz" and/or possibily their Mimetic Digitalis.
Ricky Tinez uses a lot of Noise Engineering products and features both in this video.

I think you can also get replacement faces for the Maths in black.

If you're set on that 104 hp width, Intellijel's 7U might make more sense. It would allow you to remove the Befaco Out, and the Buffered Mult (although, tbh, you don't need that with this few can use inline passive mults and open up more space), plus add some option possibilities that can give you more control, such as a Quadratt, MIDI interface, etc etc. Just keep in mind that with that case, you MUST use Intellijel-format tiles; the "standard" Pulplogic sizing won't work in their case. And yes, go back to a pair of Erica PICO Mods, since these are extremely useful for quick-n-dirty EG + VCA control over CVs and mod signals. Finally, yeah, I know black looks snazzy and all that, but those Vintage panel Doepfer modules add up. Going with the sleepy-looking aluminum ones makes more fiscal sense. Yes, they break up the color scheme...but given the ones you've got here, you can make use of those aluminum panels to break up the patchpanel into functional "zones" that're easy to see. Oh...and definitely spring for the Batumi's expander, Poti. It's worth it in $$ and the 3 hp it needs.

Nah, I'm in there with Ronin...this would be better off in an Intellijel 7 x 104. There are some modules in the Intellijel tile format that can replace/better what's here currently, and also open space in the 3U rows. For example, the Triatt can go in favor of the 1U Quadratt. The Befaco Out would then get replaced by Intelljel's Audio I/O tile so that the case's 1/4" jacks are useable, which also takes the output pair off the front panel and gives you an audio input as well. Then you can also add a Noise Tools for a noise source, clock, and sample and hold, and a uMIDI for a MIDI interface...and all of those changes would up this build's game considerably, AND leave space for some more tiles to keep that trend going. Maybe Intelljel's Stereo VCA would be useful for controlling the overall output...or if you can scrunch things on the tile row a bit, their mono digital reverb...?

Otherwise, the module compliment is pretty good. Looks like you did your homework in VCV Rack pretty well!

Hi Garfield !

Wow, thanks a lot for the great feedback ! I’m really appreciative of the detailed answer, helps me out tremendously :)
So taking into account your input, here is v2:

ModularGrid Rack

I understand your concern with the Pico modules. In fact, I have the same concern, but my plan was to use them as “set once and forget” modules, setting parameter values for the patch and the never touch it again until the next patch, as opposed to bigger modules with bigger knobs and more space I will use in a more performance-oriented manner. Now that you’re expressing those doubts, I’m thinking I should really see if those couldn’t be replaced by more user friendly modules.

You’re absolutely right about EG’s, the A-140v alone probably isn’t enough. I was originally thinking that the Pico MOD’s that I added would do the job (I put one between the VCA module and the mixer), but taking into accounts your remarks about the size of the modules not being practical, I’m now leaning again towards a bigger EG module. Turns out the Black VC EG and its expander have been discontinued but they still have some stock over at Erica Synths, with a nice discount (40%), I’ll go for that. There would still be some room left for another A-140v but would that be useful ?

I’m not sure either why the Black Mixer was left in there, I added the beefier Doepfer mixer and forgot to take the Black Mixer out but indeed it’s not needed, well spotted. Frees up some space for that EG and its expander too :)

For output, I have no idea what I was thinking, thanks a bunch for setting me straight ! So I got rid of the Erica Synths Output module and introduced the 138-o. For the final balanced output, the Intellijel Audio I/O brings balanced input to the game so I could bring the rest of the instruments easily but I went with the Befaco Output for now because Audio I/O has no headphone output, which I think would come really handy for “quick” patching jams with just the modular. I’m no expert at levels, but using a 3.5mm To 1 / 4" Jack adapter, couldn’t I simply plug my desktop synth output to say the Black Hole module input ? That would be neat ! It would totally kill the need for an Intellijel’s Audio I/O, wouldn’t need such a complete i/o module. I'll do some research.

About the double modules, you’re right again, there are duplicates: the 2 Pico Logic were there to provide Maths-like functions but it might just be overkill. Erica Synths confirmed over email that the reason I can’t find any on their site is because they have been discontinued, so I guess that solves the issue. The 2 Pico Mod were, well, me guessing they’d be fun and that you can never have too much modulation. The v2 of my rack only has 1. Pico DSP was to complement the Black Hole, basically to have 2 independent effects on 2 different sound sources to blend them together at the end of the chain, but my plan was to get only the Black Hole first and see what’s up. I removed the Pico DSP, I’ll see if that space gets filled up by something else.

You bring valid points about the presence of the Pico Atten while already having similar modules and since Erica Synths confirmed that module has also been discontinued, it’s now simply gone.

I agree again with the need for more LFOs. Erica Synths Modulator was discontinued by Erica Synths as well so that’s another one I’ll get on discount I suppose. It has multiple outs. I also added a Batumi from Xaoc Devices in the plan but that’s probably one that will come later.

Another thing I did is get rid of the MIDI module, I figure the Analog Four that I already own has 4 CV outputs so I’ll just use those. I might get one of those BeatStep Pro that everyone seems to be rocking or some other similar CV sequencer in case I need more, the MIDI was a way to reduce things to only OT + modular, I'm still undecided about that. I guess the plan is to start without it and see what makes sense while playing.

About the number of rows, my plan is to get a TipTop Audio Mantis case, those are 2 rows of 104 HP, hence my choice. Would it be a terrible idea to get a separate single row 104 HP skiff when it’s time ? I expect that since my drum needs are way too complex to create from modular, I’ll rock the OT for that, so extra modular needs would come much later ? Maybe I’m just naïve, I honestly don’t know what to think here, one one hand the case is pretty filled already, on the other hand this setup seems like it’s going to keep me both busy (and poor) for a while. Foolish ?

I hereby promise to report on Maths, Black Hole DSP and Dual VCF modules once they’re home and I’ve had time to play with them a bit, seems like I owe you that at least :)

Again, thanks a lot for the time you took to help a stranger, it is super helpful !

All the best,

Hmm. To me this looks like a perfectly usable case.

Of course you could go larger, or get a bigger case so you can grow more. But this isn't a bad build by any means.

You've got everything you need to make a good subtractive synth voice, with a backup voice that can be a bass-line or drum AND a chordy pad voice. With effects and a decent amount of modulation. And you can load basically anything you want into Nebulae. I'm not sure exactly what Garfield is getting at.... but I do agree that picking a sequencer is a highly personal thing - and that you really want to be sure you 'gel' with the choice as you often build around that.

Most of all, have fun! This case still looks pretty fun, so you'll be OK I think.

I'll concur with the idea of buying a bigger case or be prepared to buy a second case if you're looking to expand.

The Dixie II is a good choice for your basic analog VCO. You've also included a digital one. That's fine as well. The Joranalogue is a good filter to get going with. Lots of outs and features to keep you busy creatively.

The Hermod can handle some LFO duties as well as some ADSR if I remember correctly. Dedicated LFOs and ADSRs (besides the stages) are nice to have. But there's some leeway on starter builds.

How do you intend on using the Chord module? Also, the Erbe Verb and the Nebula, I would purchase in a second round of buying. If you're going to keep a case of this size then you may want some wiggle room if you need to drop in a couple of more utilities or just-one-more module.

I don't see anything technically wrong with the rack. I'm glad you included some attenuverters. I'd think about the Intelljel 7U case if its in budget. They make a 1U Quadratt that could go in the 1U row. There's also an Intellijel compatible 1U Ornaments and Crimes that's pretty tasty... as well as buffered mults and a few other items.

Overall it seems that you put some thought into this rack and your time with VCV Rack shows.

I think this looks like a great case. There is a reasonable balance between sound generators (VCOs), effects, and modulation. I don't follow GarfieldModulars' comments about envelope generators (ADSR). I use Stages for envelopes all the time, and it is excellent for that (along with Maths, which I don't have).

I really really suggest expanding slowly, if at all possible. I know everybody says that, but I built out my case too quickly, and I am still learning what modules I really need (though, some of my first modules were Filter 8, Disting, and Stages, and they are great!) Garfield Modular is exactly right that you should get a case that is twice the size of what you think you need.

I would hold off with the Links. Get some TipTop Stackcables, and then you don't need the mult (and you have other mixers). I will bet you, that you think of more interesting uses for those 4hp (e.g., Make Noise, LxD; Happy Nerding, FX Aid; Steady State Fate, MMF; Noise Engineering, Viol Ruina; just for some very different ideas of other uses of those 4hp).

I don't see much "percussion", but you can load some drum samples on the Disting, and use it as a trigger based drum machine (it can do two at the time). That was my drums for a while.

EDIT: Typo

Hi Marco,

Interesting rack... with many fancy modules if I may say, never thought so many fit in such a small rack :-) Welcome to the club of modulars and prepare yourself for getting a huge loan with the bank ;-) Haven’t come across a bank who wants to finance my modular “needs” but that might be just me...

Just joking of course, here a few matters you might want to look into it:

  • I feel your rack is pretty small, sooner or later you will regret to start with such a small case and you have to get yourself another case, so better get started with 3 rows and at least 84 HP, if possible wider. Don’t complain about the costs because just leaving out one or two of those fancy modules should easily get you a bigger case ;-)

  • To repeat your words: “Many fancy modules” :-) That’s of course nice and fancy but you should also focus on classic and simple modules/functions like LFOs, envelopes, filters, etcetera. And yes most of those fancy modules can do that but that’s an expensive way of doing so. Maths for example can be an ADSR but I wouldn’t use a Maths for just being a simple ADSR, so get yourself some envelopes planned

  • The above regarding an ADSR is just an example, I think you need to rethink your entire concept to see if the complete system is that what you really require? My advice is to read in this forum in this racks section the replies of senior persons like ronin1973 and lugia, they replied to many cases, similar like yours and my advice is to follow up on their advice :-)

  • This shouldn’t put you off though but getting the basics right, make sure you got a clear picture what you want with modular is important because it’s just too expensive to make wrong setup mistakes and yes I read your text but I think you have to go a few steps back and think on how to archive your goals with modular, must it be modular? Etcetera

  • Another thing is that sequencer, the Hermod, that might be a good sequencer yes but is it really the sequencer you need? I am myself rather new into modular as well but almost one third of all the time I have spent into modular and synthesizers went into comparing different sequencers. I bought a few (Tirana II from Xaoc Devices for example and Hikari Analog Sequencer II to name a few) however the ideal sequencer I still haven’t found. Just don’t simply get a sequencer and assume that one will do. Try to get to a dealer and test there a few. Start with a simple sequencer like I did and then consider for yourself what’s important for you for a sequencer? I am still busy with that question and still don’t have a very clear answer to myself about that, it’s very difficult and one shouldn’t under estimate the choice of a right sequencer. Unless of course budget is no issue, then just get the Hermod and try it out :-) And then from there reshape your opinion about a sequencer to see what you need

Or wait for to come up with their new sequencer Ground Control or Erica Synths with their Black Sequencer, both are not available yet but waiting for it might be worthwhile. I will wait for these two, have them tested at my dealer and then I try to make a decision which sequencer I want and then still I might not know but let’s see.

Good luck with the reading, studying modular materials, basic principles like VCO, LFOs, filters, envelopes, VCAs, etcetera. If you can read German consider this book: Synthesizer from Florian Anwander or just read yourself through the feedbacks people got here on their racks, there is really useful information coming from many people as long as you are open minded for it :-)

Then after that I wish you good luck with your planning, redoing your hopefully bit bigger case and I look forward in seeing your updated case/rack but please take your time, don’t rush it.

Kind regards,

Garfield Modular.