Hello everybody,

I already posted this on reddit a little while ago, but didn't receive a ton of feedback.
I would say that I am pretty experienced with modular synthesis, I just never build anything to that scale before and all the module options seem a little bit overwhelming.

I am in love with the IDM and Outsider-House-Genre and its complex rhythms and textures, muffled fuzzy drums and overall raw quality.
The results should be musical, I.E in a set key, since I would like to further work on it in my DAW. Also, (and I know that this might be a bit more difficult to realize keeping the other goal in mind), I would love to process my guitar and integrate it musically. Maybe even allow other sound sources (like the radio!) to get in. It would be nice, if the build was also be able to be performed on, I.E change chords, melodies bass-lines on the fly, mute tracks etc, although thats not a necessity.
Sampling is also very crucial, I once saw someone sample a Drum and Bass type breakbeat, also vocals, I would love to do similar stuff.
As far as size goes, the Intellijel 104 7u case would be a good guideline, it doesn’t HAVE to be that case, its a good reference to what I am looking for sizewise.

In short:
-Create interesting textures and rhythms (inspired by the Outsider House Genre -> See Four Tet: Pink (Album), pretty much EXACTLY what I want to do on there.
-Play in a set key, to further work on it in my DAW
-Process my guitar and integrate it musically, allow other sources for example the radio to get in and be manipulated
-Finally, being able to be performed on (change melodies, mute tracks on the fly), although thats not a necessity!

I feel like I am not quite there yet: ModularGrid Rack
Thank you for your time reading this and have a nice day.


Hi Vincent

I think you are trying to do too much in too small a space

too many voices - I generally think 1 per row is enough - 1 1/2 at a push - you have 2 1/2 per row

this is because you won't have the space for the modulation and utility modules that are needed to support them - unless of course you aspire to perform like you are on crack - see frenetic modular influencers and 'artists' who constantly touch and micro adjust knobs - this is what modulation and utilities are for people

saying that I think you have enough modulation - maybe too much - but no way of doing interesting things with them - combining, multing, modifying them - not enough utilities - I don't think 6 vcas is enough for 4 sound sources, even if some have built in ones & where are the submixers? and how are you doing final stage mixing? mix up? not enough channels so you can listen to all the sound sources at once!!!

NB regarding vcas - they are useful for so much more than opening and closing audio - they can also be patched as compressors, crossfaders, auto-panners and are fantastic for control voltage

rainmaker is a huge delay - and a lot of people seem to buy it and then not get on with it

midi/sequencer/pams - all have built in quantization - the scales is redundant - especially in this size case

I would keep only 2 of midi/sequencer/pams - I would drop either midi or sequencer and if I kept the midi I would go with a midi interface that can support hte number of voices in the rack - I count 5!

I'd probably also go for a better melodic sequencer - especially if you want to dial things in easily

NB changing 'chord' and keeping disparately sequenced melodies in key - ie changing a major to a minor or vice versa is quite difficult in modular - there is a brilliant solution - sinfonion, but it is large and expensive and only really of benefit once you have a polyphonic voice and at least 3 others

a good ratio to start thinking about when planning a modular is:

sound sources < sound modifiers < modulation sources < utilities

and start with modules you want - add what is needed to support all these modules and leave 30% free for expansion (add 10mA/hp/rail for power to be on the safe side) and then find the right case for you

these last 2 statements will save you money (eventually) - maybe not to start with in that you will end up with a bigger, probably more expensive case - but in the long run as you will not end up buying/builidng cases as a hobby

Utility modules are the inexpensive, dull polish that makes the expensive, shiny modules actually shine!!!


@JimHowell1970
Hello Jim, thank you for your comprehensive comment. I already thought about ditching the chord in favour of some utilities.
What would be some good utility options there?
I would still like to have a quantiser to convert any random voltage into musical notes though, maybe there is a smaller, more fitting version of the scales module.
You also talked about a better melodic sequencer, what options do I have there? I also looked into that and saw the Winter Modular Eloquencer, which seemed to be a little complex and not ver intuitive at first sight, but maybe you are aware of some better options!
I also completely looked over the mixing issue, my first instinct would be to add another Mixup, because the are relatively compact and chain together nicely, also open for more fitting options here. I think I could also take out the 1U Outs module by Intellijel, because I just recently learned that you can connect the mixup to the case-internal outs, and put in another Dual 1U VCA to replace it. That would give me a total of 10 Vca's (2x Dual VCA, Tallin, Veils).
About Rainmaker, I once tried it out in a store and instantly fell in love with it, and it seems like a very well thought out and interesting module, but I would still totally be open to any smaller options, since it is quite big.
Thanks again for taking the time.


regarding keeping the Scales in the rack for quantization of random voltage sources, the uO_C has brilliant quantizers in the original firmware & Hemispheres Suite!


@cameliamusic
I have already heard about that, I would like to rather use the O_c for its complex CV Modulation, or can you use more algorithms at the same time?


@cameliamusic
I have already heard about that, I would like to rather use the O_c for its complex CV Modulation, or can you use more algorithms at the same time?
-- VincentDano

If you have Hemispheres loaded, both sides can be used independently as different algorithms :)


I love my Division6 sequencer, also in an affordable and doable DIY kit