Yesterday, I installed Make Noise René v2 into the top row of my 4x104hp tower. René has a quantizer function that I wanted to learn and so I threw together this quick patch. Two oscillators, STO and Dixie II+, are tuned about 1/5th apart. I'm playing Trident over the sequence using an Arturia Keystep while also playing René to affect changes to the sequence.
In this track, it's probably difficult to distinguish STO from Dixie since they are playing together, tuned about 1/5th apart, and run through Mimeophon for repeats and 'reverb.' The Dixie is sending out a saw wave and STO a variable wave shape (triangle/sin) with modulation to 'SHAPE' cv by way of a slow LFO. Dixie isn't showing off here. It's part of the weave.
These two VCO's run contrary to my main body of oscillators: Odessa (FPGA, additive, complex), Trident (3xVCO, complex timbral), and Telharmonic (additive harmonic, noise, phase modulation), and Plaits (4x(8x8) wavetable). They were my first two VCO's for good reason: They are simple but powerful oscillators. Small packages with gentle learning curves, capable of big things.
Since I'm currently doing deep, weaving ambient stuff, my 'complex' oscillators are useful in creating sounds with a lot of depth, width, fringe, and texture. When I want to back off of that and keep things simple or clean, I reach for STO and Dixie. Not to say that they can't do it all, but you get the idea. Oh, Dixie also goes into LFO range at the flick of a switch. Often super useful.
So, why does all of this matter? If you're going to purchase a Dixie II+, just know that you're getting into a very small, simple, capable VCO that can tie really nicely into a system with purpose. Personally, I wouldn't be without 2 VCO's like STO/Dixie/Plaits/etc, but: What basic waveforms does it generate? What CV does it eat? What can be modulated? What's the base character and personality of the VCO? How does it sound when filtered/fm'd? How does it track (lin/exp/thru-0)? How does it settle into my design plan?
Here's an example of someone scoping and test-driving Dixie II+ in their rack.
Thanks a lot for your additional information and explanation. The way you described how you use your STO, that's exactly the way I use it as well, I love the STO. Yes, it is indeed a more simplified VCO but somehow I love the thing.
From a point of view of using a module (love to use it or not), which one would you prefer the DPO or the Telharmonic? I know, that are two different things but if you had to made a choice? Which one gives you the most "fun to play with" value?
Well, I chose Telharmonic over DPO. I saw Telharmonic as a challenging VCO that required focus and attention to control in a musical way. Honestly, I sometimes struggle with it. If I invest time and focus then I am rewarded. If I hurry to include it in a patch then I am likely punished. I wanted confrontation and frustration as drivers to improve.
I have not owned DPO, so I know only what I've gathered via demonstrations and videos. Since I own two other large, complex oscillators, I can't justify adding it to my current layout. It presents as a very capable and versatile tool clearly designed as a complex sound for the Make Noise system. Down the line, if DPO v2 is released then I'll likely give it a serious look. I'm a big fan of Make Noise and most everything they do, but HP is prime real estate.
Stole a few minutes in the studio before dinner. Here's another example of STO and Dixie II+ playing well together.
This entire patch is driven by Rene and a clock shifter. There's a sprinkling of Trident and a Moog Mother 32 for accents, but STO and Dixie are the main voices. Both are run through QPAS for cutoff and resonance, then on to Mimeophon to add space and repeats. Really simple patch.