Hello everyone,

This is my first step in the modular world. I've been jamming ambient/neoclassical/drone music for the past 2 years with my digitone only and never acquired any other type of hardware. I play most of the time lush and self-evolving drone soundscapes. Ive many times wanted to buy extra reverb, extra delay and granular pedals/synths but never found what I really wanted until I looked into the modular world...

First, I should receive by the end of the year a generative sequencer to go with the digitone: T-1 by Torso Electronics (it will include 4xCVs and 2xGates). From january, i would start buying and building everything.

So this is the setup I've come up with. My idea is building a "small" tabletop live sampling and FX (mostly granular) processing unit to go with my Digitone which will be the main and only sound source (except manually added samples on the Morphagene). I would start with a 4ms Pod 64x HP case which would leave 8hp free.

Ears would be the entrance of the setup and provides simple line-level amplification for the Digitone. Morphagene would then provide live sampling in parallel or independently from Clouds/Monsoon. Meaning the Digitone could be plugged into the Morphagene for recording or playing an external sample at some moments or into the Clouds or with both flowing at the same time. Ochd by DivKid/Instruo and its 8 LFOs would provide slow drifting and evolving modulation (which is what I like the most in drone music) to both of Morphagene and Clouds. I could probably add in the future if the sound is too static for my taste, a Wogglebug by MakeNoise to bring randomness and some kind of uncertainty/craziness..
Finally the XOH by MakeNoise could make the sum of independent Morphagene and Clouds processed sounds as well as being the final output to my headphone (which I use 99% of the time when I play).

How do you think those 5/6 modules would work between each other with my Digitone? Am I missing extra modulation?

Thanks in advance for your feedback!

Hi Agarthha!

you really need to spend some more time researching - and think bigger (case), but start smaller (fewer modules)

you probably don't need ears (at least for inputting from digitone) - both morphagene and clouds are stereo anyway - both also work at both line and modular levels - you might want the envelope following or contact mic functionality though

whilst ochd is a great module - I would expect something like a maths to be more suitable - it is more hands on and more versatile - you'll probably want more modulation that is controllable - there is very little control over ochd and it only offers triangle waves shapes ) that's not to say don't get ochd - but I would get maths before ochd - see the illustrated manual (google) and marvel at it's analog patch-programmable computerness!!

you may be better off with chaos rather than random - triple sloths for example instead of wogglebug - random is random - chaos is a bit more centered

I would also add a kinks and a matrix mixer to help create more interesting modulation and some filters and other effects - fx aid xl, for instance

you will almost definitely want vcas for both modulation and audio - get a quad cascading one - veils or intellijel - they can also double as inputs if you need them to - as both of those VCAs are actually amplifiers! veils also has decent saturation - idk about intellijel

you'll also want some basic envelopes for those gates - to feed the vcas - if you want more keyboard like pressing get ADSRs, other wise ADs or even Ds are generally fine for most things

I would advise strongly against starting with such a small case - 104hp/6u is a more sensible starting point ) this will leave you space to expand - you will need it - Mantis is an excellent inexpensive choice with good power - and it is still tabletop/portable

Hello! Thanks a lot for your feedback. After more searching it looks like Ears is not needed for Monsoon and Morphagene indeed.

I would really like to keep it small and i've no real desire to expand it, but probably 84hp or 104hp like you suggest is more realistic for the long term budget yes! So instead of Maths, maybe PAM which would provide the modulation in 8hp (envelopes+lfos+randomness) and ochd?

Duly noted for the Triple Sloth instead of the Woggle Bug and for the Veils, maybe a dual VCA based on the Mutable Instruments Veils like the one made by After Later Audio could be enough for most of the patches?

As a start, I don't really see the point of adding filters+kinks+fx aid as most of the work will already be done on the Digitone (effects+filters) and the audio processing is done on the Morphagene and Monsoon? Could you please explain?

So here is a second version of the setup : PAM+Ochd+Morphagene+Monsoon+DVCA+MakeNoise XOH and later on, for more slow randomness, the Triple Sloth as suggested?


you really can never have too many vcas - watch the mylarmelodies video on youtube called "why you can never have too many vcas"
6u/104 is still a small modular!!! it won't fit in your handbag - but it is portable etc etc
always allow space to expand - you might not think you will want to expand from this now but you probably will - if your case is full that means buying another case - a bigger case to start with will work out cheaper overall
why filters: so you can stick a filter between morphagene and monsoon for example
why kinks: modify modulation - stop it being boring - the current rack is basically one patch - kinks will add a lot to it
why fx aid: so you have choices about how to route stuff - add layers etc etc
as for a modulation source - pams is great (i believe) but not so hands on - personally I like maths - its sort of a microcosm of modular - see the "maths illustrated manual" online to see why

personally I'm not that big a fan of ochd - no control really

modulation is quite personal though - it's a journey not an end - some things you have to work out yourself

@JimHowell1970, we gotta get you on the Ochd train, the control is in what you patch where as each output is in relation to the others. Using outputs 3 and 8 will get you a very different result than 7 and 8. In the end it can be pretty expressive c.f. this piece where the Ochd is driving the whole melody https://stevehand.bandcamp.com/track/akemies-drone

we'll see... I doubt it though - I'd want a reset I think!
I already have a decent amount of modulation!
who knows what the future holds though... it's a definite possibility - if only it was twice the size and pingable!

I do agree @JimHowell1970, a reset's the one thing I think it's missing (fyi @DivKid 👀)

nah it's a great module as is
I just think I'd rather have a zadar or a batumi or another stages...
or some inexpensive doepfer ones with resets