Im new to modular,im slowly building my first rack for Dark Ambient

ModularGrid Rack

i need some more vcas,what im not so sure about is what utility modules i am in need of?


I think you're actually in pretty good shape for VCAs (six VCAs for a system of this size seems fine). What you may find, though, is that you need more sound sources... unless you count filters self-oscillating, you only have one oscillator here. You don't need to add a second source immediately, but it should probably be high on your list for next steps.

You're in good shape for most other things, I think, but one thing I always like to suggest is Sloths. It would go very well here.

Finally, how are you controlling/sequencing this? MIDI? If not, then you might want some sort of sequencer module.


I think you're actually in pretty good shape for VCAs (six VCAs for a system of this size seems fine). What you may find, though, is that you need more sound sources... unless you count filters self-oscillating, you only have one oscillator here. You don't need to add a second source immediately, but it should probably be high on your list for next steps.

You're in good shape for most other things, I think, but one thing I always like to suggest is Sloths. It would go very well here.

Finally, how are you controlling/sequencing this? MIDI? If not, then you might want some sort of sequencer module.
-- Shakespeare

sloths is on my list for modules to check.regarding sequencing i need to do some research would love to hear from others that make ambient/Dark Ambient regarding sequencing modules


Not too shabby. Although, there's some areas that could be whupped on a bit more...

First up, you might find that a Wasp VCF is a bit too aggressive for ambient. It's also kinda simplistic, which (given ambient's reliance on shifting timbres) could be a drawback. Instead, look at some more complex filters such as Doepfer's A-106-1 (has an insert in the feedback path, allowing you to majorly screw with this via delays, reverbs, etc etc), Limaflo's Motomouth (morphing formant filter), a Rossum Linnaeus (stereo SVF with thru-zero capability), or Intellijel's Morgasmatron (complex dual state-variable, pretty much a "Swiss Army Knife" filter).

As for the VCO situation, I disagree with the above poster. You should look into a VCO setup that has a lot of capability for strange modulation methods, like Intellijel's Rubicon3 or Xaoc's Odessa, plus also consider a simple VCO or two (like Noise Reap's interestingly screwy Bermuda or uBermuda) for AF modulation of either the Cloud Terrarium or whatever second source oscillator you choose. But you DO need more than just the Cloud Terrarium for the sake of sonic complexity/density.

Modulation sources...first of all, that version of Maths is long-discontinued. The 2019 one should be in here unless you have one of these early ones on hand. Batumi + Poti = good. No envelopes (I don't consider the Maths to be just an EG) = bad. A good choice there would be Intellijel's Quadrax, which sort of condenses their Quadra and the Quadra Expander into a single quad function generator. And yes, a Sloths would fit very well here, as might a VERY long EG such as 4ms's PEG.

Things to lose: Links (don't use a mult module in a small build...use inline mults instead), Kinks, and the Ladik mixer. As for the latter two, you need a more comprehensive random source module, with the pinnacle being something like the Verbos Random Sampling (offers many Buchla 265 SoU functions, plus has a shift register for canonic polyphony)...and you need a better mixer that can offer CV over functions such as panning, level, AUX send; the Qu-bit Mixology would be a better fit, and also allow the Erbeverb to be used in a proper AUX send/return fashion.

Now, as for the sequencing...this is where the definition of "ambient" comes into play. Are you trying to do something more determinate and/or "Berlin School"-ish, or do you need something more random or generative and stochastic-based? Or does this need to be more akin to a controller/sequencer, such as a Make Noise Rene/Tempi combo? And whichever one is needed will ALSO determine what ancillary modules are needed to go with it, so it's a bit of a "hole" until/unless you can define how you want that to work compositionally.

Lastly...make the cab bigger. Not that you'll actually wind up with a huge cab, but it helps to be able to create a fully overblown version of what you have in mind first, then pare this back down to something more workable...unless, of course, big is OK.


have updated the rack abit,going home from holiday today so will update it more when i get home.

i actually have the newest version of maths arriving on monday

(dont know how i get the rack picture updated:))


(dont know how i get the rack picture updated:))
-- Broken-Form

Go back to the rack's page, refresh it, then check in View: Screenshot to see if the screenshot pic matches what you see in the layout. If not, refresh again and check again. If it works, it should be possible to refresh this thread and see the new version.


I see enough sound sources, modulation sources and sound modifiers for this size rack

I would keep links - not only does it have a buffered mult - which you should use for v/oct - you can then send a single v/oct to the 3 potential sound sources (odessa, e352 and clouds) but it also contains 2 basic mixers - which you will almost definitely be glad of - I do not see a dedicated sequencer!

the deficits in this rack are the same as in most newbie racks - although, yours is reasonably balanced - links and kinks are a great utility starter set imho - the lack of utility modules to support the shiny expensive ones - clouds (if it is an og or a 'faithful' clone) benefits greatly from some attenuators (I have a 2hp trim module either side of mine) - yes I know you have attenutaors in Maths, but why waste them like that - check the maths illustrated manual for why you shouldn't just see maths as a collection of utilities - but as a self contained analog computer for self-patching interesting functions


thanks for all the suggestions guys,got alot to research


regarding sequencing,would something like the varigate 4 work?


The Varigate 4+ is a cool sequencer for a small rack because it has options for 4 gates, 4 CVs, or 2 gates/2 CVs, and you could always add a Voltage Block later for 8 16-step CV sequences.


The Varigate 4+ is a cool sequencer for a small rack because it has options for 4 gates, 4 CVs, or 2 gates/2 CVs, and you could always add a Voltage Block later for 8 16-step CV sequences.
-- farkas

another sequencing option could be a korg sq-1.but dont know if that would limit me


The SQ1 is fun. I actually just sold mine though. It was definitely a very cost effective solution as I was starting out. I found that I wanted a lot more sequencing power very quickly, but everyone has different approaches.


Got an SQ-1, also. However, the best cheap external sequencer I can think of (and which I have two of, plus a Keystep and Keystep Pro) would be the Beatstep Pro. Very ample control, especially in live situations. Plus, you get two analog sequencer channels plus the trigger sequencer and its individual outputs.


decided to get the sq-1 as a starting point to get to know the modules,i can always upgrade


one module i am thinking on getting that i think might be a good fit for what i want to do with my eurorack,is the Soma Lyra-8FX