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The Threeler
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Adam-V



Joined: Jan 29, 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Looks pretty good for something that is "low budget". Is that paper artwork glued to aluminium?

Cheers,
Adam-V

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Etaoin



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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 10:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Adam-V wrote:
Looks pretty good for something that is "low budget". Is that paper artwork glued to aluminium?


Laminated paper glued to 3mm plywood.

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Adam-V



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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2008 9:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Cool!!!

Do you get much flexing of the panels when you're patching?

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Etaoin



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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2008 11:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Not a lot. I got more when I used 1mm aluminium. Any aluminium thicker than that is both harder to get and harder to work, so I switched to 3mm plywood. They manage to get three layers into that, so it is reasonably solid, at FracRack sizes anyway. I use an aluminium L-shaped bracket on the back to mount the PCB. The bracket is fixed to the panel with sunken screws, the laminated front just glued over that to hide them.

Biggest problem I had was finding 3.5mm sockets that fitted through a 3mm panel. I tried countless until I ended up with the cheap Kobicon ones from Mouser.

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v-un-v
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2008 6:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

RF wrote:
here's mine. Just fits on a 2 1/4 by 8 1/2 inch panel.
I left off the fine-tune for the frequency. May have been a bit crowded with it.


you may live to regret that move. I can understand fully why Ian would have put in that fine tune control. The one thing that gets me about my MS20 is how difficult it is to tune when oscillating. Shocked

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RF



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PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2008 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I'm fairly new to music synthesis - I've apparently missed a key concept.
Is it the nice sine wave...or having another voice available...?

I've never really understood the attraction of using a filter as an oscillator.
Question
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v-un-v
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2008 4:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I think it's the nice extra sinewave. Having oscillation on the filter was very useful in budget 1960's modulars like the EMS VCS3. But I think another often overlooked reason was because of the screaming filter feedback, on boxes like the TB-303 so loved by dance music producers in the late 1980's.

But I have an MS20, and the Threeler is based on the MS20 filter design I believe? It is always very hard to get the filter to stay between no oscillation and cone-removing feedback, so fine tune both in feedback and frequency, I think is highly useful. Also don't let us forget that fine tuning is also helpful for microtonal stuff?

I've gotta get myself a threeler kit. (Just need employment! Wink )

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IST NICHT FÜR GEWERKEN BEI DUMMKOPFEN. DER RUBBERNECKEN SIGHTSEEREN KEEPEN DAS COTTONPICKEN HÄNDER IN DAS POCKETS MUSS.
ZO RELAXEN UND WATSCHEN DER BLINKENLICHTEN.
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Etaoin



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PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2008 11:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

v-un-v wrote:
you may live to regret that move. I can understand fully why Ian would have put in that fine tune control. The one thing that gets me about my MS20 is how difficult it is to tune when oscillating.


But this is not an MS20...

I find dialing in resonance pretty gradual, even with only the coarse pot.

Quote:
Also don't let us forget that fine tuning is also helpful for microtonal stuff?


I'm not sure I understand this. Why do you need finer tuning for microtonal stuff? Don't you just tune it perfectly with the trimmers and do smaller amounts of cv?

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Etaoin



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PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2008 11:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

And as Ian says in the docs, it does track differently in the four modes. So if you want to have accurate tracking every time, you would also need to bring to V/Oct trimmer out, as you would have to recalibrate for every mode.
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frijitz



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PostPosted: Tue Jul 08, 2008 4:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

RF wrote:
I'm fairly new to music synthesis - I've apparently missed a key concept.
Is it the nice sine wave...or having another voice available...?

I've never really understood the attraction of using a filter as an oscillator.
Question

Sorry I didn't get to this earlier -- I was out of touch for most of the last week or so. (Is it really true that there are parts of the civilized world that don't have satellite links, or were they just feeding it to me?)

For a traditional filter you want a stable hi-Q response over a wide frequency range for making ringing percussive sounds (etc.), so you get a high-purity sine VCO for nothing just by turning the Q up to the oscillation point. (Remember, many VCO designs do not have a sine shaper.)

The topologies of the Threeler and MS20 are not as stable as (say) a state-variable design, so the hi-Q and sinusoidal oscillation capabilities are somewhat limited. The fine freq control is useful because all the beyond-resonance nonlinear effects are quite sensitive to the relative frequencies of the filter and the driving signal. Scott Stites mentioned this wrt his demos in another thread.

Very Happy

Ian
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Etaoin



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PostPosted: Tue Jul 08, 2008 11:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

frijitz wrote:
and the driving signal


Indeed, that is what I noticed as well. If you turn the input up too much, you lose all oscillation (but you gain a nice overdrive).

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loopcycle



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2008 11:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

well, i just built this thing, and i think its probably the most aggressive sounding filter ive got. certain ms-20 characteristics jumped out at me at certain frequencies and modes--then, other times it spit out completely alien noises/chirps'n'twirps at me that the ms-20 has not even thunk of uttering.

anyway, this filter is incredible. it will be a good fun while until i get a hang of its pecularities. thank you ian (and thanks to scott/bridechamber for the killer panel and kit).
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machine.cuisine



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

A couple of quick questions Smile :

How do I wire up the 2P4T Rotary Switch?

Since I can't find an English 2SA798 Datasheet, how is it placed on the PCB - I'm thinking flat-side (side with writing) facing the middle of the PCB?

How is the Tempco placed on the PCB?

Thanks!

If I can figure out these issues, I should have this baby going tonight...and after hearing Scott Sites demo, I can't wait.
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Etaoin



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 12:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

machine.cuisine wrote:

Since I can't find an English 2SA798 Datasheet, how is it placed on the PCB - I'm thinking flat-side (side with writing) facing the middle of the PCB?


It's symmetrical, it doesn't matter.

On mine the tempco is fixed to the side of the 2SA798. I could take a picture but that wouldn't be until tomorrow.

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frijitz



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 1:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

machine.cuisine wrote:
A couple of quick questions Smile :

How do I wire up the 2P4T Rotary Switch?

Since I can't find an English 2SA798 Datasheet, how is it placed on the PCB - I'm thinking flat-side (side with writing) facing the middle of the PCB?

How is the Tempco placed on the PCB?

(1) I don't know exactly what your switch looks like physically. You should see two identical sections, each with four terminals next to each other and a separate fifth terminal. The switch is wired off of J2. The fifth terminals are where A0 and A1 are connected. The others are connected to either V+ or ground as indicated on the schematic. The order on the switch is the same as the order on the schematic. Let me know if this isn't clear -- we can make you a picture if necessary.

(2) Either way around.

(3) Solder it into the R36A position indicated on the stuffing diagram. Leave the leads long enough to reach to the 798. Bend the leads so the tempco is along the side of the 798. Glue it in place for best results, although this isn't critical.

Thanks for your interest, and don't hesitate to ask more questions. The kits assume some prior experience in building, and we realize that the docs might not be adequate for some people.

Very Happy

Ian
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machine.cuisine



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I got the 2SA798 and Tempco set up, thanks for helping me (see the obvious - had I actually looked closely at what the device is, I would of seen that it's just two transistors...)

frijitz wrote:
(1) I don't know exactly what your switch looks like physically. You should see two identical sections, each with four terminals next to each other and a separate fifth terminal. The switch is wired off of J2. The fifth terminals are where A0 and A1 are connected. The others are connected to either V+ or ground as indicated on the schematic. The order on the switch is the same as the order on the schematic. Let me know if this isn't clear -- we can make you a picture if necessary.

Ian


I'm using a rotary select switch - with the two middle 'terminals' and the 'ring of terminals' around it and I've set the stopper on the 4th position.

I don't understand what's going on with the switch in the schematic.
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frijitz



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 5:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

machine.cuisine wrote:
I'm using a rotary select switch - with the two middle 'terminals' and the 'ring of terminals' around it and I've set the stopper on the 4th position.

I don't understand what's going on with the switch in the schematic.

Imagine the schematic bent around into a circle. The middle terminals are the A0 and A1 connections. Each of those connects to one of the outer terminals in each switch position. You can tell which ones by looking or by using an ohmmeter. In the first position they contact the terminals labeled "1" in the schematic. In the second position they contact the next pair in the schematic, and so on.

Very Happy

Ian
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machine.cuisine



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 5:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

frijitz wrote:
Imagine the schematic bent around into a circle. The middle terminals are the A0 and A1 connections. Each of those connects to one of the outer terminals in each switch position. You can tell which ones by looking or by using an ohmmeter. In the first position they contact the terminals labeled "1" in the schematic. In the second position they contact the next pair in the schematic, and so on.
Ian


Got it. Thanks Very Happy !

All that's left to do is wire the jacks, pots and the switch to the panel and hopefully I'll be exploring a beautiful non-linear sonic landscape tonight!

Chris
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machine.cuisine



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PostPosted: Fri Aug 08, 2008 4:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Man, this thing is awesome...I thought the Steiner VCF was nice...someone said "aggressive" - that is an understatement. WOW.

Very Happy Great job, Ian Fritz - thank you for letting us have a piece of your genius.

A note to whoever hasn't built the Threeler yet - Do use the "Fine" tune control - the "Coarse" is not subtle enough for minor tweaks - but the "Fine" control is a must, IMO.
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frijitz



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PostPosted: Fri Aug 08, 2008 5:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

machine.cuisine wrote:
Man, this thing is awesome...

Thanks, I appreciate that. I put a lot of time and effort into finding the gnarliest configurations. It was hard to choose among all the possibilities -- that's why I decided to put in the switch and bring out all three stages.

Very Happy

Ian
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machine.cuisine



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 10, 2008 5:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

In the spirit of this board, here's my Threeler "panel"...I know it's ghettotronic, but this isn't a hobby for me - I do it (diy) for the sounds.

Also, below is a dry and simple sample of a Threeler "pad", taking on 3 mixed VCOs. The cutoff frequency is being swept by a slow LFO. Mode I, output 3.


threelerpanel.jpg
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threeler panel
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threelerpanel.jpg



threelermode1_3oscPAD.mp3
 Description:
three VCOs mixed into Threeler, mode 1, out 3. cutoff swept by lfo.

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 Filename:  threelermode1_3oscPAD.mp3
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Scott Stites
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 10, 2008 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

That's a beautiful sample. And quite demonstrative of gentler side of the Threeler. Thanks for posting that!
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machine.cuisine



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 2008 11:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Scott Stites wrote:
And quite demonstrative of gentler side of the Threeler.


Yeah, I realize that. But I search for that quality in a VCF..which not all VCFs can do so convincingly.

Crazy grinds are easy with the Threeler. I love it.

Thank you, Scott, for all of your demos...they are like little songs to me.
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machine.cuisine



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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2008 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I'm getting juicy, fat and metal-guitar-like results in Modes 1&2 with VCOs to audio in, and routing 'Out 1' back to Threeler 'V/Oct input', and listening to audio from 'Out 3'.
Also, processing the 'Out 1' with something (say a CGS wavefolder) and routing it back to Threeler 'V/Oct' is nice, too...Of course, the Audio Input Level makes pretty drastic changes.
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frijitz



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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2008 7:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Machine --
Thanks! I haven't tried any of that yet. Any chance for demo clip or two?

Very Happy

Ian
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