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VCS 3 / Synthi AKS inspired synth DIY
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Rykhaard



Joined: Sep 02, 2007
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PostPosted: Sun May 09, 2010 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

v-un-v wrote:
One thing that was unique to the synthi, was that each function that out-putted sound, had a level control- which then patched into the pin-matrix. In this case, connection could be done using banana cables/sockets, as these can be stacked (but I guess you loose any chance of normalisation or buffering?)


For this type of machine, I myself would still prefer the matrix idea. I think the 'output amount' control should be added as well. Either that, or input amount control, for each modulation destination.
Actually - rethinking that - output amount for each, would be preferable. Espeically in the instance of multiple things gonig to a single destination.

Quote:

I started designing a pin matrix board in Solidworks to house 2.5mm jack sockets- but like usual, something else came along at the time Rolling Eyes

It could easily be resurrected. There's a good shop just down the Coventry road that deals in Acetal modelling- but there would be an awful lot of wiring involved. Sad


I definitely prefer Frequency Central's matrix idea. As to wiring - it could be put together on a PCB, saving running the wires to the connections. The final bit of wiring would from each matrix point, to the sources and destinations.
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Peake



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PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2010 10:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

v-un-v wrote:
I have come to the conclusions, that the reason the vcs3 gets so much hype, is not only by the amount of now-famous musicians who have used it (Eno, Pink Floyd, TD, KS, BBC Radiophonic workshop etc etc etc), but the fact that there are so many cult pictures of those people say next to the thing, with it's "physics lab" look, then added to that it is rare and very expensive, makes it a highly desirable 'SFX' "instrument". Even chatting about it here is bumping up that elusiveness!


Noooo.... I hype it because I've owned some four of them in my days, and it is an amazing-sounding instrument, and very very fun to play. Who cares about engineering and "Used By..." photos? Really fun, and great-sounding. The only obstacle is price.

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v-un-v
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PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2010 11:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Okay, fair play. I've never owned, or used one. I've only seen and touched an AKS, which wasn't working! Goddam it!! I'd love a VCS3 if it were the only synth I ever owned. Crying or Very sad

But I still think they are overrated/overpriced. Evil or Very Mad

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sunny pedaal



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PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 2:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

he says he does stop selling the pcb's , but still keeps offering them, what to think 'bout that?
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adambee7



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PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 6:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

sunny pedaal wrote:
he says he does stop selling the pcb's , but still keeps offering them, what to think 'bout that?


It's either he has not updated his site or he is just testing the water. I would love to build one but i can't understand why they are fetching nearly $10000 in some cases second hand. We have diy'ed most well known makes why not this. Very Happy Very Happy
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v-un-v
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 7:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I've seen them go for much much more than $10,000. It's absolutely obscene, especially for a box with contains a rather rudimentary set of electrical bits. But it's not EMS's fault. What is EMS's fault is EMS's total fu*king incompetence at business. Somebody really should go and shoot Robin Wood, and start the factory up once again, do it properly. But then again, "properly" is something that has never really fitted into the British way of doing business! Evil or Very Mad
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sunny pedaal



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PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

nobody forces you to buy one.
the topic is if copying somebody's inventions , making money with it, even with the help of schemes given in trust , should be welcomed .
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2thick4uni



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PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Thanks to the miracle of SDIY its now pretty easy to get very close to Synthi A and VCS3 (or possibly even better?) without treading on anyone's toes.....

1 of JH Living VCO module gives 3 great VCO's (add tri and sin wave shapers if needed, MFOS VCO boards can be adapted for this)
1 of (newly launched!) JH Trapezoid Env / VCA, gives envelope and VCA
1 of Yusynth Diode Filter gives genuine EMS style VCF
1 of 20x20 Ghielmetti patch pin matrix

Not a lot more needed really, just ring mod, spring reverb and some buffer circuitry for patch panel but there are DIY options for these too.

As soon as I have some spare time and cash I'll be building one........

Last edited by 2thick4uni on Sat Aug 07, 2010 5:18 am; edited 1 time in total
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sunny pedaal



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 1:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

i don't have money much.
as soon as i have a few cents to spare i'll "buy" an illegal version of all wave plugins.
there is no other way i would ever be able to buy them all , as they are ridiculously expensive.
i think it's a good idea and feel very comfortable by this "legal"action .
i have rationalised it perfectly by the above mentioned method of reasoning.

cheers man , good luck with your waveplugins !
nice forum...nice guys...
please next time don't bother me anyway anymore by all shitchat of having to buy only legal software, people have cheated on ebay, somebody stealing your wife..
cheers
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adambee7



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 4:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

2thick4uni is right. That's the best way of doing it. Well its the way i'm going to do it anyway. Very Happy Very Happy
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v-un-v
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 5:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I tell you what, Fritz's Teezer, shits all over any EMS oscillator ever produced! I would have 3 of those in my clone vcs3 Cool

.....which brings me on to a new question, when is a vcs3 NOT a vcs3?? Shocked

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v-un-v
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 5:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

It's also very important, that the VCF has that lag time "sloppyness" on the CV input on the filter, giving that classic vcs3 'gloopy mud' sound. starting at around 0.45s;



Brilliant track! Very Happy

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adambee7



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 5:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Nice. Very Happy Very Happy
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v-un-v
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 5:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I think all one needs is a little passive filter or something? An RC combination? Or even just a single electrolytic?
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nerdware



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 6:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

v-un-v wrote:
It's also very important, that the VCF has that lag time "sloppyness" on the CV input on the filter, giving that classic vcs3 'gloopy mud' sound. starting at around 0.45s;

ISTR that the Yusynth clone has this.

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v-un-v
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 7:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

ISTR? TANOM CYTMWIM? Shocked

CHEERS! Very Happy

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softfin



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 7:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Building a modified/ custom version of the VCS3 sounds interesting to me. Not so interested in a one to one clone. One can always do something better or at least do something differently to suit one's needs better. Smile
Interested to see what people come up with this project. I'll probably build something EMS insprired as well if I have the time this fall.
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nerdware



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 8:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

v-un-v wrote:
ISTR? TANOM CYTMWIM? Shocked

CHEERS! Very Happy

I Seem to Remember

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v-un-v
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 9:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Laughing

TANOM

"That's A New One On Me"

CYTMWIM?

"Can You Tell Me What It Means?"

Laughing

Very Happy

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Peake



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

2thick4uni wrote:
Thanks to the miracle of SDIY its now pretty easy to get very close to Synthi A and VCS3 (or possibly even better?) without treading on anyone's toes.....

1 of JH Living VCO module gives 3 great VCO's (add tri and sin wave shapers if needed, MFOS VCO boards can be adapted for this)one........


Don't forget that you'll need to change the LVCOs to respond to the extreme modulation depth inherent in the EMS oscillators...something much less than 1V/Octave, IIRC. This is significant.

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2thick4uni



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 08, 2010 1:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Peake wrote:
2thick4uni wrote:
Thanks to the miracle of SDIY its now pretty easy to get very close to Synthi A and VCS3 (or possibly even better?) without treading on anyone's toes.....

1 of JH Living VCO module gives 3 great VCO's (add tri and sin wave shapers if needed, MFOS VCO boards can be adapted for this)one........


Don't forget that you'll need to change the LVCOs to respond to the extreme modulation depth inherent in the EMS oscillators...something much less than 1V/Octave, IIRC. This is significant.


Yep, good point.

IIRC the VCS 3 & Synthi A VCO's were 0.32 V/Oct; easily implemented on living VCO's with a single resistor change per VCO, could even add a switch to give a choice of 0.32 or 1V/Oct for more versatility.
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sunny pedaal



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 08, 2010 2:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

isn't osc3 0,28v/oct ? althought that might be a good mod not to be too puristic
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clarke68



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2010 11:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Does anyone know a way to build an ultra-simple spring reverb (Synthi-style, with just two control knobs - level and wet/dry mix)? I'm pretty sure there's a way to drive a tank with a headphone amp circuit, but I don't know how to wire it up. Seems like it may be one of those things that's so easy no one has bothered to post a schematic anywhere, but I'm new enough at this that I'd still like the help.
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2thick4uni



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2010 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

clarke68 wrote:
Does anyone know a way to build an ultra-simple spring reverb (Synthi-style, with just two control knobs - level and wet/dry mix)? I'm pretty sure there's a way to drive a tank with a headphone amp circuit, but I don't know how to wire it up. Seems like it may be one of those things that's so easy no one has bothered to post a schematic anywhere, but I'm new enough at this that I'd still like the help.

Could any Synthi A and VCS3 users out there let us know if there are any peculiarities with the EMS spring reverb driver and amp circuit that influences the sound or are we safe in going ahead with a simple op amp based design?
The EMS circuit is pretty straightforward but all transistor as it was designed before opamps were cheap. Spring reverb tanks are readily available so we could design it around an accutronics type tank unit.
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mark_olson



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2010 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

clarke68 wrote:
Does anyone know a way to build an ultra-simple spring reverb...


http://sound.westhost.com/project34.htm

I've had this on my to-do list for a long time but haven't built it.

Mark
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