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 Forum index » DIY Hardware and Software » YuSynth
Building a Yusynth modular!
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kkissinger



Joined: Mar 28, 2006
Posts: 1221
Location: Kansas City, Mo USA
Audio files: 29

PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 11:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

sebsongs wrote:
My first Yusynth VCO is now working perfectly! It started and worked as expected the first time i plugged it in! Very cool indeed!


Congratulations on completing your first DIY VCO and on it working on the first power-up!

Getting back to the Steiner filter (for your information, actually since you may want to build this one in the future)...

Yves has three versions of the Steiner filter on his web site (I will call them 1, 2 and 3). My Steiner filter was #1 and, while an interesting filter, was very hard to "tame" for musical use. Sometimes the filter would unexpectedly self-oscillate when changing the mode switch and the resonance could be a little tricky. Also, the transition to minimum resonance was scratchy.

Well, a couple of years ago I had etched the #2 version (at the time, it was the latest) but never got around to populating it until now. Well, the #2 version is a huge improvement over #1. I had to mess with a few resistor values to get it to behave exactly how I wanted it to however it sounds better than #1 and, after a bit of tweaking, the resonance is quite controllable across the range with no "bump" or scratchiness. Also, no problems when changing the mode, either. The filter is very effective in all of its modes. At high resonance, it can scream -- however it is controllable. I tweaked my resonance control so that it self-oscillates at the max setting so that I don't accidently dial it in. Smile

The #3 version is similar to #2 -- the only substantial change is #3 utilizes a voltage follower in the resonance (i.e., feedback) path whereas #2 uses clamping diodes. I would expect both filters to be similar except that #3 might have a little smoother sound at high resonance settings.

I used two matched transistors for the expo converter and it tracks ok. Again, I had to tweak a few resistor values.

And therein lies much of the "art" and the fun of sDIY -- particularly with filters. For example, you can choose to drive the input harder to intentionally overdrive the filter. You may decide that you want your maximum resonance to scream. Or, you may decide that you want a filter that is easy to use for live performance -- maybe a little "tamer" so you don't get an unexpected "scream" or "whistle" out of it.

Again, congrats to you on your VCO build -- all the best on your keyboard project.

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elmegil



Joined: Mar 20, 2012
Posts: 1524
Location: Chicago
Audio files: 14

PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 11:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Kevin:

Any idea how Yves' versions of these compare to the Ruberto Synthacon VCF from 2007? I have it built, but I'm a little way from having it panelled and wired, just curious if you've heard anything.
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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
Posts: 48
Location: Kristianstad, Sweden

PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 6:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

kkissinger wrote:
sebsongs wrote:
My first Yusynth VCO is now working perfectly! It started and worked as expected the first time i plugged it in! Very cool indeed!


Congratulations on completing your first DIY VCO and on it working on the first power-up!

Getting back to the Steiner filter (for your information, actually since you may want to build this one in the future)...

Yves has three versions of the Steiner filter on his web site (I will call them 1, 2 and 3). My Steiner filter was #1 and, while an interesting filter, was very hard to "tame" for musical use. Sometimes the filter would unexpectedly self-oscillate when changing the mode switch and the resonance could be a little tricky. Also, the transition to minimum resonance was scratchy.

Well, a couple of years ago I had etched the #2 version (at the time, it was the latest) but never got around to populating it until now. Well, the #2 version is a huge improvement over #1. I had to mess with a few resistor values to get it to behave exactly how I wanted it to however it sounds better than #1 and, after a bit of tweaking, the resonance is quite controllable across the range with no "bump" or scratchiness. Also, no problems when changing the mode, either. The filter is very effective in all of its modes. At high resonance, it can scream -- however it is controllable. I tweaked my resonance control so that it self-oscillates at the max setting so that I don't accidently dial it in. Smile

The #3 version is similar to #2 -- the only substantial change is #3 utilizes a voltage follower in the resonance (i.e., feedback) path whereas #2 uses clamping diodes. I would expect both filters to be similar except that #3 might have a little smoother sound at high resonance settings.

I used two matched transistors for the expo converter and it tracks ok. Again, I had to tweak a few resistor values.

And therein lies much of the "art" and the fun of sDIY -- particularly with filters. For example, you can choose to drive the input harder to intentionally overdrive the filter. You may decide that you want your maximum resonance to scream. Or, you may decide that you want a filter that is easy to use for live performance -- maybe a little "tamer" so you don't get an unexpected "scream" or "whistle" out of it.

Again, congrats to you on your VCO build -- all the best on your keyboard project.


Thanks for the heads up, Kevin!
I guess I´ll build either version 2 or 3 then. We´ll see.
Oh and thanks for the encouragement about the VCO. I absolutely love the sound it produces. Can't wait to stack a couple of them together. Smile

I'm in the process of deciding what to order next.
I think it will be four VCAs, four ADSRs, minimoog filter, arp filter, steiner filter and the diode ladder filter. I'll order the PCBs first and then order components as I get the time to build.
I think I get what you're saying about building filters. I haven´t done it yet but I see the fascination with it. A filter is not only a filter, it's a sine VCO too. I mean, I'll have 3 VCOs and 4 filters, and in practice that can be 7 VCOs if I want to. Not that I'll ever utilize it, but I will be able to.

I ordered a MIDIMPLANT yesterday. Midi in and 2x CV and Gate out with lots of tweekability. Seems perfect for my project and I can then also choose to sequence my modular from pro tools if I want to.
Oh, and it takes 15VDC. No extra PSUs. That's always a good thing.
I have an old Roland PC300 that I will screw apart and borrow the components from.

One cool thing with it is that it can put out notes on one CV channel and any other midi message on the other. So I can hook up modulation, pitchbend or whatever to the other CV. I can also use it as dual note CV and bring in MIDI from two sources on different midi channels. Gives me a lot of options, that's for sure!

The MFOS matrix scanner goes on the shelf for now. I´ll bring it out when I need some arabic scales. Wink
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kkissinger



Joined: Mar 28, 2006
Posts: 1221
Location: Kansas City, Mo USA
Audio files: 29

PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 6:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

elmegil wrote:
Kevin:

Any idea how Yves' versions of these compare to the Ruberto Synthacon VCF from 2007? I have it built, but I'm a little way from having it panelled and wired, just curious if you've heard anything.


I'm not familiar with the Ruberto Synthacon VCF -- if you have a link to a schematic I can compare it with the Yusynth VCF.

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kkissinger



Joined: Mar 28, 2006
Posts: 1221
Location: Kansas City, Mo USA
Audio files: 29

PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 7:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

sebsongs wrote:
Thanks for the heads up, Kevin!
I guess I´ll build either version 2 or 3 then. We´ll see...

I think it will be four VCAs, four ADSRs, minimoog filter, arp filter, steiner filter and the diode ladder filter. I'll order the PCBs first and then order components as I get the time to build.


My experience with the two Steiner filters is that, at least for me, I had to do some tweaking (which means changing some resistor values) whereas the other filters worked ok "out of the box". I'd recommend that you start as planned -- with the transistor ladder filters then tackle the diode ladders.

The trickiest thing about diode ladders is that the diode leads are narrow and cold solder joints can be hard to find. And -- out of all those diodes all it takes is one cold solder joint to keep the filter from working at all! You are at an advantage with pre-tinned PCBs and it probably won't cause you any problems. I like to etch my own PCBs however, without the tinning, they are a little harder to solder.

Keep me posted on your ARP filter clone -- I am particularly interested in how it compares with the Moog filter clone.

Sounds like you have a good plan for your MIDI to CV converter. Will your converter support Midi Clock?

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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
Posts: 48
Location: Kristianstad, Sweden

PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 7:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

kkissinger wrote:
sebsongs wrote:
Thanks for the heads up, Kevin!
I guess I´ll build either version 2 or 3 then. We´ll see...

I think it will be four VCAs, four ADSRs, minimoog filter, arp filter, steiner filter and the diode ladder filter. I'll order the PCBs first and then order components as I get the time to build.


My experience with the two Steiner filters is that, at least for me, I had to do some tweaking (which means changing some resistor values) whereas the other filters worked ok "out of the box". I'd recommend that you start as planned -- with the transistor ladder filters then tackle the diode ladders.

The trickiest thing about diode ladders is that the diode leads are narrow and cold solder joints can be hard to find. And -- out of all those diodes all it takes is one cold solder joint to keep the filter from working at all! You are at an advantage with pre-tinned PCBs and it probably won't cause you any problems. I like to etch my own PCBs however, without the tinning, they are a little harder to solder.

Keep me posted on your ARP filter clone -- I am particularly interested in how it compares with the Moog filter clone.

Sounds like you have a good plan for your MIDI to CV converter. Will your converter support Midi Clock?


I'll keep you posted when I get to the filters.

I don't think it supports midi clock. I get that it would be cool to have to control LFO rates and such. Well, future upgrade maybe. Smile
For now I just want good stable CV keyboard.
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elmegil



Joined: Mar 20, 2012
Posts: 1524
Location: Chicago
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Schematic for the Ruberto version is in this thread on muff's:

http://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/topic-78669.html&highlight=

One of the primary differences is the FET being used for a "turbo", I assume overdrive type function.

I was more curious if you'd heard that particular card; I can't find any demos of it out there. I am at the last stage, just need to panel it and then I can post some demos.
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kkissinger



Joined: Mar 28, 2006
Posts: 1221
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 9:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I just put together a track where I demo the Steiner VCF (note that this is the 2nd design (that uses a discreet transistor pair).

http://electro-music.com/forum/post-380036.html#380036

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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
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Location: Kristianstad, Sweden

PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

kkissinger wrote:
I just put together a track where I demo the Steiner VCF (note that this is the 2nd design (that uses a discreet transistor pair).

http://electro-music.com/forum/post-380036.html#380036


Oh my! That filter is really aggressive! I do like the mod you did with the mode switch. Can you post what resistors you changed and to which values?
I'm interested in doing something similar.

Really cool demo anyway!
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kkissinger



Joined: Mar 28, 2006
Posts: 1221
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2013 7:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

sebsongs wrote:
I do like the mod you did with the mode switch. Can you post what resistors you changed and to which values?
I'm interested in doing something similar.

Really cool demo anyway!


Here is the schematic of the design that I built and demo'd (not the latest design):

http://yusynth.net/Modular/Commun/STEINERVCF/VCF-2SC1583-sch.pdf

Here are the mods:

1) Replaced R7 (1K) with a jumper to achieve 1 volt per octave tracking

2) Replaced R13 (22K) with an 18K and added a 32K between R13 and ground. The SPST switch is connected between the junction of these two resistors and ground. (In other words, the switch bypasses the 32K resistor.)

Here is Yves' latest design:

http://yusynth.net/Modular/Commun/STEINERVCF/Steiner-improved-sch.gif

The corresponding parts in the new circuit are R28 for tracking and R23 for resonance, however the values on these resistors are different from the earlier design and you may or may not want (or need) to tweak them.

Also, the new design has an additional trimmer (T2) that balances the input current to the diode ladder (this would be an easy mod for me to add to my filter and I may do it). Incidentally, it is a control voltage rejection trimmer.

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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
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Location: Kristianstad, Sweden

PostPosted: Fri Mar 22, 2013 4:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

So I got my Midimplant device this week and tried it out today. Works really well with the Yusynth VCO. I got it to track within half a cent over the 5V range. Can't ask for better than that!

Money's been low this month but soon it'll get better and I'll place some more orders. filters, envelopes, vcas and some other stuff will be built during april and may. by the end of may I hope to have a case full with panels and a keyboard, all working perfectly. We'll see. Smile
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Hollywood



Joined: May 22, 2012
Posts: 13
Location: Ireland

PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I just finally decided this week that building a modular is the only way to go, and I'd been pondering around deciding what to put in, and had settled on Yusynth (and some Doepfer), so this thread has been inspirational! I'll be keeping track of your progress while I get some money together... time to do some clearing out, some guitars and my reel-to-reel need to be sacrificed to start!
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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Glad to hear that I can inspire more people to start building!
I'm close to ordering a lot of components and pcbs now. VCA's, EG's, LFO's, filters, noise, sample and hold and probably some ac dc mixers too will be ordered.

My order list in excel is close to 400 rows long. A lot of components to source!
But I'm nearly done and almost everything gets ordered from one place.

Check out my webpage too if you like. http://www.sebsongs.com/category/modularsynth/

Feel free to ask me anything!

Hollywood wrote:
I just finally decided this week that building a modular is the only way to go, and I'd been pondering around deciding what to put in, and had settled on Yusynth (and some Doepfer), so this thread has been inspirational! I'll be keeping track of your progress while I get some money together... time to do some clearing out, some guitars and my reel-to-reel need to be sacrificed to start!
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2wice



Joined: Apr 03, 2013
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Location: Pretoria Gauteng South Africa

PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 12:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Hi sebsongs

Could you tell me where you where able to get the 1K tempco resistors please?
I'm planning on building my first VCO and banging my head trying to source these things in South Africa.

Thanks
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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
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Location: Kristianstad, Sweden

PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 11:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Hey!

I got them from farnell just as Yves explains on his vco site.
In sweden there is a company called microkit that makes it possible for anyone, not only companies, to order from farnell. There is several distributors in south africa that can order from farnell. Check this site:

http://www.farnell.com/distributors/southafrica_ele.htm

Hope that helps!

I am aware of some workarounds to the tempco also, using regular ntc resistors. Google it!

2wice wrote:
Hi sebsongs

Could you tell me where you where able to get the 1K tempco resistors please?
I'm planning on building my first VCO and banging my head trying to source these things in South Africa.

Thanks
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2wice



Joined: Apr 03, 2013
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 11:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Hi

Yeah I did try the Farnell route and I received my quote from their distributor yesterday, but they declined to quote on that item.
So I'm going to have to make another plan.
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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
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PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 1:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

2wice wrote:
Hi

Yeah I did try the Farnell route and I received my quote from their distributor yesterday, but they declined to quote on that item.
So I'm going to have to make another plan.


Did you solve this? Maybe someone here could help you get them?
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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
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PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 1:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Finally this project is progressing! I got a big shipment of components this week and 25 PCBs are arriving next week.

The list of modules that I will be building now:
4x VCA
4x ADSR
4x LFO
1x Steiner filter
1x EMS filter
1x Moog filter
1x Arp filter
2x DC mixer
1x Sample Hold
1x Noise

And then some MFOS wall wart PSUs and my own layout of the ARP 2600 Spring reverb circuit.

A picture of the components:
Posted Image, might have been reduced in size. Click Image to view fullscreen.

Next weekend I will start the soldering process! Fun fun fun!
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2wice



Joined: Apr 03, 2013
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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 5:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

sebsongs wrote:


Did you solve this? Maybe someone here could help you get them?


Hi sebsong.

Yeah I was able to get them from the national Farnell distributor.

Module is built but still need to fire it up.

Thank you for your concern.
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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
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Location: Kristianstad, Sweden

PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 1:24 pm    Post subject: Lots and lots of PCBs came in the mail today! Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

So I got the PCBs today for all the modules I mentioned a post or two up.
The guy actually sent me more PCBs than I was asking for. Pretty neat.

Posted Image, might have been reduced in size. Click Image to view fullscreen.

I'm just waiting for some green coat and a few more components to arrive and then it is soldering time!
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isak



Joined: Dec 13, 2009
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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 10:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Wow, a lot of work for you there Smile
Green coat you say? Can you explain please.
What are those top right pcb's and top left pcb's? I don't recognize those...
Btw who made you the pcb's?

Sorry for lots of question Rolling Eyes

PS 1k Tempcos you can get at willzyx, they are also in the x0xb0x Wink
http://www.willzyx.com/collections/x0xb0x

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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

isak wrote:
Wow, a lot of work for you there Smile
Green coat you say? Can you explain please.
What are those top right pcb's and top left pcb's? I don't recognize those...
Btw who made you the pcb's?

Sorry for lots of question Rolling Eyes

PS 1k Tempcos you can get at willzyx, they are also in the x0xb0x Wink
http://www.willzyx.com/collections/x0xb0x


Yeah, it is going to take a while to get them all soldered!
Green coat is a coating that 1: protects the copper from oxidation and 2: makes the pcb green and more professional looking.

The top left pcbs are the mfos wallwart power supply boards, but my own layout. The top right ones are my own layout also, and is a clone of the spring reverb driver circuit from the ARP2600. I have soldered that one this last weekend and it works very well indeed. Smile Always fun when ones own layouts works first time.

I ordered the pcbs from a small company in poland (I'm situated in Sweden where pcbs often are expensive) and they deliver fine pbs at very low cost. This last batch set me back like $7 a piece. Not bad. Id probably pay $50 a piece in sweden.

Thanks for the tip about the tempcos. I already built the VCOs and got my tempcos from farnell, just as Yves recommends.
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isak



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PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 2:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Thanks for replying.
where can I get the green coat from?

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sebsongs



Joined: Feb 09, 2013
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PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

isak wrote:
Thanks for replying.
where can I get the green coat from?


I bought the Bungard green coat:
http://bungard.de/forums.html?option=com_content&task=view&id=65&Itemid=46&lang=english

If you're from europe you can get it at conrad.de. In the states I don't know, you will have to google it.
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capicoso



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Posts: 127
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PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

The green coat also makes soldering easier because it has flux.
If money is a problem(like here in Argentina) you can just buy alcohol and some rosin resin, mix them and there you have your flux. Soldering is a pleasure... After soldering it's good to remove it though.
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