Roland SH3 CV Modification

Earlier this week I did a post about a band a stumbled across called Kline Coma Xero (read). I decided to give the man behind the band, Tony Williams an old school phone call. We did chat for a while and I discovered he also owns a Roland SH3 and recently modified it to work with CV/Gate. I’ve been thinking about doing this for a while and he promised to post a video showing the mod so here it is above. The SH3 is a really nice sounding synth because it has a proper Moog filter in it (among other things). Moog sued Roland and in response Roland created the SH3-A which changed the filter design.

“A video overview of my Roland SH-3 which I modified using the KENTON SH-3a CV/Gate/Filter mod. I intentionally left off the filter mod due to the fact that the SH-3a has a different filter than the SH-3.” – Tony Williams

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Control Voltage Faire

There is a modular synth show at the South Street Seaport (210 Front Street, New York) in NYC tomorrow today! It’s called the Control Voltage Faire and it runs from 3-8PM. If that’s not enough fun for you there is a Buchla Concert that follows from 8-10PM.

“Since most modular synthesizers are constructed at the cottage industry level and distributed online, it is difficult for users to interact with these instruments. Control Voltage Faire will be the first opportunity on the East Coast for amateur enthusiasts, professionals and the general public to experience analog synthesizer modules produced by DIY manufacturers and crafters. Like a small-scale NAMM show with the independent spirit of the Maker Faire, the Control Voltage Faire will zone in on the origins and future of modular synthesis. Presenters at the Control Voltage Faire include: Control, 4ms, Harvestman, Knas, Main Drag Modular, Make Noise, Malekko, SnazzyFX, MeMe Antenna and Pittsburgh Modular. And more to be announced! The evening will feature Buchla 200 Recital, presenting three composers exploring this powerful instrument: Alessandro Cortini, Carlos Giffoni, and Mark Verbos. To end the event, a late show featuring Xeno & Oaklander and Loud Objects will perform on all-analog instruments. The concert will take place in Lower Manhattan’s @SEAPORT!, located at 210 Front Street.” –…

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Sync Trigger

As I am about three fourths of the way done with my next album and my studio is a mass of wires. I’ve become obsessed with syncing my old drum machines and analog synthesizers using various methods. I’m not looking for perfectly quantized MIDI. I’m looking for some Control Voltage madness. Last night’s experiment will definitely make it to a full song. I haven’t shared anything with you in a while with regards to my upcoming music but it’s time I start breaking the ice. The audio sample may not be your cup of tea but the method can be used to create all sorts of nonsense in many music styles.

I have an old Korg Rythm 55 drum machine. I go out of it’s Trig Out to a Doepfer Dark Time analog sequencer’s Click In. On the Korg you can set the sequencer to trigger in various times. If you select a 16th note you will get your typical Giorgio Moroder type of thing. This time I have it set to follow the Korg’s kick drum (blue arrow above). The Doepfer is hooked up to one of the oscillators on an Analogue Solutions Telemark synth (both pitch and filter). This time around I don’t want the Dark Time telling the synth to play different notes. I only want it to Trigger a very slight pitch change and that’s why (see the green arrow) I have the pitch line stop after the second step. The two steps are just slightly detuned. The filter does change open and closed over 8 steps (which you can only hear when the filter is partial closed at the beginning). If you notice there is a grey Midi cable plugged into the top of the Dark Time. If I wanted I could play different notes on my attached MIDI controller and the entire sequencing line would change pitch.

Hit play on the Korg and off we go. I turn up the filter, bring in the Korg’s snare and you have something from a different decade. To add to the whole vintage feel the Korg has some Boss DM-100 on it. You can hear when I hit the fills on the Korg the synth follows and it’s really magic. One last thing to note is if you look at the Analogue Solutions Telemark photo above you see that orange arrow? That points to the other oscillator that’s not being controlled by the Doepfer. Its another reason you hear a detuned sound. I can bring it and the noise knob in and out for great effect (or verse/chorus parts). Time to add the vocals.

“At its most basic, an analog sequencer is nothing but a bank of potentiometers and a “clock” that steps through these potentiometers one at a time and then cycles back to the beginning. The output of the sequencer is fed (as a control voltage and gate pulse) to a synthesizer. By “tuning” the potentiometers, a short repetitive rhythmic motif or riff can be set up.” – Wikipedia

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Solar CV Moog Little Phatty


Oh pretty thing there you are. Sweetwater has an exclusive on a special edition Moog Little Phatty Stage II. Besides it’s pretty rear it has a Control Voltage output modification pre-installed at the Moog factory. Analog sequencer bassline fun is on the menu. This thing has CV, Midi and USB! I’m glad the economy is in the tanker because these are $1500. Do you want one too?

“You can also connect it directly to a computer running the Little Phatty Editor/Librarian. MIDI Clock Sync allows you to synchronize the LFO and arpeggiator rate to your MIDI sequencer, drum machine or software. Sample and hold, triangle, square, sawtooth and ramp wave modulations can now be perfectly timed with your rhythm track. With the pre-installed CV Output module, you also get CV output for the gate (0V – +5V), pitch (1V per octave), volume envelope (0V – 5V), filter envelope (0V – 5V), and off of the mod bus at a variable voltage.” –

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