Hi Everyone!

Jeebus, that's a mouthful.

First, thank you all for teaching me so much. I have been reading many of your threads while struggling with VCV and my dying laptop to learn the fundamentals necessary to get into modular.

With COVID, I have to suspend my work in spatialized sound and have chosen to use the time to create a more refined instrument capable of quadrophonic spatialization, so that I may continue developing my understanding of composing with space... Up until now I have only been using DAW-based instruments.

I am hoping you all will give me your thoughts on this modular rack:
ModularGrid Rack

It is meant to allow for organic and real-time weaving of controlled/generative ambient and the textures of speech and/or field recordings.

It's my intent to grow into this rack as I hope to eventually perform live, OR record tracks separately to then spatialize for more advanced spatial sound systems... but this is a ways off.

Thanks for reading this harrowingly genuine post! lol. Please, feel free to share any thoughts/concerns you may have. Really hoping to make something special to play with for many years to come.

I have some initial thoughts @jamesallisters but first off I'm curious what you actually want to do within quadraphonic space. Is it an open playground for you (i.e. you're not sure yet or you want to try everything you can imagine) or is it something that you want to accomplish particular goals within (e.g. making Ryoji Ikeda jealous of your cool rotating notch effects)? You say "It is meant to allow for organic and real-time weaving of controlled/generative ambient and the textures of speech and/or field recordings." but that's not necessarily something that requires quadraphony, so if you plan to make it a focus it'd help to understand the goals a bit more.

Hey @troux!

Thanks for this question! My current technical understanding is based on the capabilities of the Buchla 227e (CV quantized movement, swirl, etc.). At the very least I would like to be able to emulate that kind of movement.

Ideally, I would like to allow CV parameters to maintain movement of generative ambient across the room,
while I am sequencing harmonies or processing field recordings in opposite parts of the room (will need to invert signal...still searching for the right module/s). Stylistically, think Ciani // Pamela Z // Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe.

Trying to get as much spatial dynamics to explore ambient as possible AND trying to figure out advanced effect processing for field recordings and live vocals (not really reflected in this rack yet, but thought I'd mention).

Thanks for your thoughts!

This is a pretty interesting question @jamesallisters. I'm definitely not the best qualified to answer on the forum, but I went ahead and put together a rack (based on yours) to think about how I'd tackle this problem.

ModularGrid Rack

My theory (though I'd love to hear what others think) is that I'd want:
1) a ton of modulation: so I added the Ochd, the 4ms Quad Lfo, and the WORNG Vector Space, this in turn would make me want
2) a lot of VCAs: so I added the 4ms VCA Matrix
3) a quad effects path, so I added two Erica Synths Pico DSPs which are each stereo, and the Qu-Bit Tone
4) a ton of potential voices, so the Quad Morphing VCO and the Chord
5) something to fill in all the gaps that are missing, so a Disting EX which can be used in dual mode
6) one more inverter just in case, and
7) some way to manually control quad panning, so the Planar 2.

Anyway, I'm not sure I'd suggest you buy this rack exactly, but hopefully there's some useful ideas in there!

Am also moving in this direction. Recently added Planar 2 and Batumi while also close to swapping out Nebulae for WORNG Vector Space. I am working towards deep, wide, evolving sessions. I like to patch up something that is organic, textured, interesting and explorable while also playing over it with tactile modules like Planar 2. I'm not even close yet, but I know where I want to be.


Let's keep this thread going and see where it leads us. Record some patches. Let the gear lust be fed by what we learn and figure out.

Nice @mowse, I can see how you'd be moving in this direction with your rack. What do you think of the quad effects path question? That felt like the hardest part to me (which is why I went with the Picos since they're so small and cheap) but I kind of think you'd have to lean into it to really do this well.

I think it could work very nicely and I think also that there will be found several other ways to do it. That will be the fun part, experimenting with the concept in multiple ways. The weekend is coming and there will be time to exploire.

Thank you for your thoughts! I have a long way to go. @troux I'm going to play with your suggestions.

@mowse I agree. Let's have some fun and report back.

Hello! I've been thinking a lot about quadraphonic systems and the key element for me are the matrix mixers. Not only they can send audio to 4 different outputs but they can also mix dry/wet fx signals to multiple destinations without the need for many fx modules. It's hard to imagine the possibilities that's why not many people consider them.

Hi James! I hope you`ll back to any work you wish in a nearest time. COVID is going hard for real xd
By the way, your setup is good.
I can see that lockdown is pushing people to discover something new about themself.
For example, I acknowledged that I am antisocial man, that was curious lol