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 Forum index » DIY Hardware and Software » MusicFromOuterSpace.com designs by Ray Wilson
Which MFOS should I get?
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Netdewt



Joined: Jan 31, 2013
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Location: Minnesota, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:26 am    Post subject: Which MFOS should I get? Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Hello,

I'd like to build a synth, and I'm sure a WSG would be fun. I am new to synths, but a little more experienced with building electronics. In the long run, building a modular is very attractive to me. What modifications should I make to the WSG to make it eurorack modular compatible?

Would it be better to just dive into making some modular components? Which ones are recommended to start with?

Thanks.

Last edited by Netdewt on Tue Feb 05, 2013 10:27 am; edited 1 time in total
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elmegil



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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

WSG is not remotely modular friendly. Smile There is no voltage control, unless you add mods described on the page. That wouldn't be something I'd recommend as a first or early project.

I think you'd probably be much better served with one of the several Soundlab variations from MFOS. I still wouldn't want to panel it, but at least it could be hooked up to a modular, depending on how you patch it out etc. I've done one where I brought almost all the oscillators and things out to 1/4" jacks and it would be just as easy to do 1/8" jacks for Euro.
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Uncle Krunkus
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

The WSG isn't designed to be part of a modular synth, but it is a fun project to start with, and could be easily added to a "real" synth as a strange noise or modulation source.
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Netdewt



Joined: Jan 31, 2013
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Location: Minnesota, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 6:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Ok then, I won't bother thinking about that for now.

Really, I'd like to build a Sound Lab MK II, or perhaps build multiple MFOS modular components, but I like to know what I'm getting into by doing the WSG first.

Other synths I am looking at:
Pittsburgh Cell[48] System 1
Doepfer Dark Energy
DSI Mopho (or used Tetra maybe)
Korg Monotron or Monotribe
Korg MS-20 (the new one)

Not really sure what kind of gear I would want ultimately (mono or poly, keyboard or pads, software or sequencer, or all, etc). I like music, audio gear, and building electronics. I hadn't realized this stuff was so fascinating.
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elmegil



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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 8:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Quote:
I hadn't realized this stuff was so fascinating.


You're doomed. Smile I think the SL MK II would probably work pretty well if you are good with soldering and general electronics, Ray's warnings notwithstanding. The WSG is fun, I did one early on, but I rarely play with it much these days....
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Netdewt



Joined: Jan 31, 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 9:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

elmegil wrote:
Quote:
I hadn't realized this stuff was so fascinating.


You're doomed. Smile I think the SL MK II would probably work pretty well if you are good with soldering and general electronics, Ray's warnings notwithstanding. The WSG is fun, I did one early on, but I rarely play with it much these days....


I know, and I have so many hobbies. I have been wanting to get back into music for 10 years, since I sold my stuff from high school band. I also just bought a ukulele to mess with, and we're looking into digital pianos for my kids to learn with.

Hmmm. Maybe I should take a closer look at the SLmkII... would I actually need an oscilloscope?

I had an instructor in college that is very into experimental electronic. He told me about MFOS in the first place I believe. Neat stuff on his SoundCloud:
https://soundcloud.com/ostraka
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elmegil



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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 9:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

This is a soundlab plus, running noise into the sample & hold

Cigarlab sample & hold by elmegil


As for a scope....I don't think I used one for the cigarlab, but then again I'd already troubleshot a previous soundlab.
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Uncle Krunkus
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 3:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

No, definitely don't need a scope to get started.
Invest in a mid range digital multi-meter, probably around the US$40-60 mark.
The only reasons you wouldn't get a US$30 DMM?
1. One which will do frequency and duty cycle would be very handy.
2. A capacitance range will also show up on the US$50 DMM which has limited, but unique usefullnessl in these kinds of circuits.

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Netdewt



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I have a super cheapo DMM that I own, and I'm borrowing my brother's Fluke. It's more suited to home electrical though, I don't recall seeing capacitance or frequency on the dial.
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Netdewt



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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 10:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I have talked to some people, located a scope I can use, and I am now thinking of building the Sound Lab mk II. It will be a challenge, but I think I can do it.

What d o you think about building a few modular components from MFOS, such as one of each, VCO, VCF, VCA, EG, LFO, wall wart power supply? That way I could continue to build more modules and buy additional modules in the future. My thought is that maybe they would be a little simpler to build and troubleshoot individually.
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capicoso



Joined: Nov 19, 2012
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 11:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Like you said, i'd start building individual modules(i etch them myself so, etching a SL mkII won't be fun). Easier to troubleshoot, more fun, expandable, and more more modules
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otcx



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I do not know your skills, but you can also consider old good SL minisynth. That one was very good startpoin at least to me, and you can patch that out to be part of modular.
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Netdewt



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 5:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

capicoso wrote:
Like you said, i'd start building individual modules(i etch them myself so, etching a SL mkII won't be fun). Easier to troubleshoot, more fun, expandable, and more more modules


Why etch them yourself? That's what I keep thinking!

Quote:
I do not know your skills, but you can also consider old good SL minisynth. That one was very good startpoin at least to me, and you can patch that out to be part of modular.


I am no expert, but I like a challenge. I've done a couple of electronics projects before. I have access to an oscilloscope and help from a friend.

Hmm, maybe. I was thinking that one earlier. I change my mind every day!
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elmegil



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 6:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

In my opinion, the biggest challenge of a Soundlab is the wiring Smile Placing and soldering components is the same regardless of what you're making, but wiring and panelling a synth board without getting lost is definitely a challenge. Very Happy
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otcx



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Yes that is defenetely right. But it is not that hard if you follow istructions.
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bubzy



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Netdewt wrote:
Why etch them yourself? That's what I keep thinking!


because its a lot cheaper than buying premanufactured PCB's (and a lot messier)
and once you get used to it, it's a piece of cake.

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capicoso



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 10:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

bubzy wrote:
Netdewt wrote:
Why etch them yourself? That's what I keep thinking!


because its a lot cheaper than buying premanufactured PCB's (and a lot messier)
and once you get used to it, it's a piece of cake.

Yeah, where i live, the usd dollar is expensive 6:1 . Shipping can take up to 2 months to reach my country. So, if i etch them myself i have them right at the moment when i want to. I don't like etching double sided, but the rest, it's fun, and i like drilling them
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Netdewt



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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 8:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Anyone have a few "MPF102 (or 2N5457, PN4391, 2N4391) N JFET" I can buy off of you? MFOS's are $25.
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elmegil



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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 9:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Unicorn Electronics (http://unicornelectronics.com/Transistors/FET.html) Has them for $0.12 each or $10 for 100. Not sure what Ray's pricing is about. I have a couple handfuls, but it's not necessarily worth shipping you 5 of them, even if I marked them up and charged you a dollar or two for them.

Of course, Unicorn has a minimum order of $25 (before tax & shipping), but that $25 will get you a fair bit more than 15 MPF-102's....
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Netdewt



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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 9:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

What other obsolete parts would be worth buying from them if I do more MFOS and other synth stuff next?
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elmegil



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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 10:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

They have CA3080 OTAs which are used various places, and a few other things in that series which I've seen referenced but never had cause to use.

http://198.170.117.30/IC/RCA.html

They have LM13600 and LM13700 OTAs as well as the 3080's.

http://unicornelectronics.com/IC/LINEAR.html

I got my XR2206's from them, used in el Cerrito VCO.

I got my LF442 and LF442's from them.

They have PIC microcontrollers, if you are thinking of doing any digital stuff (though you'll need more than the microcontroller to get going).

Edit: not all or even most of these are "obsolete" but they are among the less common things I've bought.
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Netdewt



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PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

User "RF" is sending me parts! Thank you thank you!
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