Let’s start 2017 even if we don’t have any busses or mA’s left in our eurorack modular system. Not mention cash… You may already know that passive circuits are more fun than just simple multiples or attenuators.
You must have been in the following situations (so have I):
- Running out of busses / power in your eurorack system
- Having a few HP’s of space left, yet you did not know what to do
- None of the above, but still not having a single passive module in your system (except multiples maybe)
So I thought to inspire you with some ready-made modules/concepts that are entirely passive and readily available for you…
If you have a signal (audio or CV) and another signal
the output will only show an “on-off” state IF only ONE of the input signals are present. Anyway, if you got lost somehwere, I can tell you that OR-combination is Ideal for rhythmic variations or audio mangling (that is, cutting the “upper” wave of your audio signal – so-called half-wave rectification). Most OR-combiners are usually 1 to 3 or 1 to 6 (or 7) setups… Except for Synthrotek’s massive Combine OR which offers you enough OR-combination channels… (8 times 4) for a while. I have an Intellijel OR in my case but the Doepfer one is pretty cool too.
2) Multiples with switches (or any manual switch basically)
My all-time favourite multiple module is the switched one from good ol’ Doepfer. Isn’t it wonderful that you can switch off any multiplication or switch to another channel. Wish someone made a monster version of it with 4-stage toggle switches and more interesting routing! Let your hands become the sequential switch!
Check out ADDAC’s Sustain Pedal Switcher too: it is a tool which accepts sustain pedals’ signals to switch between your audio/CV signal inputs!
You can never have enough of them (also, you can never have enough mixers and VCA’s). Once you had enough of the barbaric signal levels, you will realise that less is more. What is more, less sounds better. Attenuation is essential to fine-tune any patch. Even Aaron Funk said so. And now I say so, and a lot of people would. Of course you could always find fun to invert and offset input signals too, but hey, that would not passive any more, so I won’t include all those lovely utility modules here…
Doepfer A-183-1 – dual attenuation on two seperate channels. It won’t get any simpler than this.
SSF-WMD – Quad Atten – if two channels were
2HP Trim – Currently the world’s smallest attenuator
Erica Synths – Pico Attenuator – currently the world’s 2nd smallest attenuator
Finally, a few things I left out deliberately: I could have included ring modulators, but I prefer them buffered hence powered to for more massive sound), passive filters (go check the Bastl one!), too and tons of more DIY euro projects (attenuators, vactrols – also, lovely audio stuff happens too even when you just obstruct any signal with a simple LED!), yet I decided to go for ready-made and available products.
I hope you will have some passive fun!