maanantai 26. lokakuuta 2015

Euclidean Sequencer

Godfried T. Toussaint has written a book "The Geometry of Musical Rhythm" where he uses an interesting geometrical representation of rhythms. There are many interesting topics in this book like Euclidean rhythms, Crystallography and rhythms, Radio Astronomy and Flat Rhythms, Deep rhythms and Symmetric rhythms.

The Elements (Stoicheia) is a collection of 13 books written by Greek mathematician Euclid 300BC.These books contain a compilation of algorithms to solve a variety of geometric and number theory problems. One algorithm called the Euclidean algorithm solves the problem of finding the greatest common divisor of two given natural numbers. Whith musical rhythms this means that Euclidean algorithm can be used to find how the beats (number of beats is k) in a sequence (of length n) can be distributed as evenly as possible. The rhythms generated in this way are called Euclidean rhythms and will be denoted by E(k,n). It's interesting how this simple algorithm generates rhythms that are used throughout the world. You can read more about Euclidean rhythms as described by Toussaint in this free paper (

What has this all to do with modular synthesisers ? I bought a Stoicheia DIY-module by Rebel Technology ( from Thonk ( Stoicheia is a dual Euclidean Sequencer that has the Euclidean algorithm programmed in it's Arduino ATMega168 CPU.

You can generate all the max. 16 step length Euclidean sequences with just three control knobs:

1. Starting beat of the sequence that can be rotated left or right
2. The length of the sequence 1-16
3. The number of on-beats from 1 to length of the sequence

These two sequencers can be chained to create sequences longer than 16 steps. You can easily generate as complex as you want rhythms with this simple module.

torstai 22. lokakuuta 2015

Ryuichi Sakamoto and Open Reel Ensemble

Nothing beats real tape recorders.

moiréwith Open Reel Ensemble / Braun Tube Jazz Band(Official)
Posted by Ryuichi Sakamoto Social Project, Korea on 8. lokakuuta 2015

tiistai 20. lokakuuta 2015

Moog Prodigy clone version 1.6

Here are the latest Moog Prodigy clone boards and the front panel. I am very happy with the original Prodigy so I am not going to add many modifications to it functionalities and properties. So far only one mod is implemented and that's the pulse width modulation for both oscillators. You can externally add PWM to oscillators from the front panel jack-inputs. There is also manual PW-adjustment for VCO2 near the VCO2 level adjustment. This is going to be a desktop version of Prodigy with pitch and mod wheels and jack-connections to CV-, VCF-, GATE- and AUDIO-inputs.

Board layouts are adjusted to the potentiometers and switches that I have gathered from different sources. I have also added bypass-capacitors to the original design where needed.

The main board.

This smaller board connects to the main board and contains the envelope potentiometers.

Front panel layout.

sunnuntai 18. lokakuuta 2015

Amsterdam Dance Event 2015

This year ADE had interesting events concerning modular synthesizers and synthesizers in general. In ADE Sound Lab I checked these three interesting lectures:

Cyril Lance, head of engineering and product development in Moog
"Evolving Analog Synths: Using the Past to Reflect the Future"

Roger Linn
Linnstrument development and DEMO

Dave Smith
History of Sequential Circuits/Prophet's and the new Prophet 6

Amazing to see and hear these two legends (Roger Linn, Dave Smith) lecturing at the same event. Dave had a brand new tabletop version of Prophet 6 with him. There was also a Modular Market with hardware from Moog, Roland, Abstract Data and Ginko Synthese. I talked with Abstract Data's Justin Owen about ADE-32 Octocontroller (8-output control,modulation, triggering and pattern module) and ADE-31 Logic Boss logic module. I liked very much the concept behind the Octocontroller and together these modules are very powerful ( There was also short concerts showing the modulars in action. Richard Devine was there also playing his euro-modular setup.

Moog Modular 15

The new Moog Mother 32 and AniMoog

There was also a DIY Moog Werkstatt workshop

The new Roland Juno 106. It sounded good !
Richard Devine performing

keskiviikko 14. lokakuuta 2015

Korg SQ-1

Tip of the week! Korg SQ-1 can be used to convert analog CV-clock to MIDI-clock. It's much cheaper than the boxes that are dedicated to this job and you get also a handy small step-sequencer!

SQ-1 can do this conversion as a clock master or slave. If you want only to do the analog/MIDI clock conversion then you must inactivate all the gate's (gate on/off) and steps (active step). Otherwise SQ-1 will send both the step information (note value and gate) and MIDI-clock. This has allowed me to use an LFO as a master clock and to sync all the other devices (analog and MIDI) to this one clock. With SQ-1 there comes a jack-to-MIDI-cable adapter.

lauantai 10. lokakuuta 2015

EMB Expansion Part Two

Front panel came from Schaeffer AG (notice the candy-box that comes with every order).

These three euro-modules must be moved to the expansion panel.

Expansion in place with to extra euro-modules (Intellijel uScale and uFold).

perjantai 2. lokakuuta 2015

EMB expansion

I designed an expansion panel for my Electronic Music Box synthesizer. It contains my favourite Turing Machine sequencer with Pulses/Voltages expansions. There is also small but handy place for some general Eurorack modules. Next I must combine EMB's separate +-12V and +-15V power supplys to one box.

torstai 1. lokakuuta 2015

Pictures from my NoodleBar gig in Rotterdam/Worm

We had a nice evening in Worm/WunderBar with NoodleBar. There was first a hack-a-stylophone workshop led by sound artist Tasos Stamou from Greece and after that the concert in WunderBar.
LAB (Martijn) started with his big modular setup that created huge modular-soundscape which surrounded us all. Very nice indeed! Then performed our Italian modularist Alberto Novell with his eurorack modules. Nice simple and structured performance. I liked very much the contrast between non synced at tightly synced drum parts. Very organic sound! After this performed our workshop leader Tasos Stamou with his interesting mixed electronic and acoustic setup. Demanding but very interesting music with not so usual instruments. The last performer was me as 1/2 Sigma. This concert was recorded so maybe we can listen it someday from web.
In the train from Amsterdam to Rotterdam.

We had a nice and not so expensive Hotel room from Bazar only 200m from WunderBar. Breakfast was included and it was very good.
My Eurorack modular and EMB. The cardbox contains my Modcan frequency shifter!

LAB's modular wall!
Martijn (right) and me.
Alberto Novell with his Eurorack modules.
Tasos with his mixed instruments. Notice the lamp on the table!
Host of the evening Mr. NoodleBar!

Rouding in Rotterdam Railway Station.