Sunday, November 29, 2009

Quick Tip: 7x OSCs Thor

As I previously mentioned, Thor can have more than the standard known 3 simultaneous OSCs.
Here's an example of a 7xOSC Thor: 6 polyphonic OSCs + 1 monophonic OSC

(For demonstration purposes, I enclosed this example in a Combinator, allowing easy access to some of the available parameters to tweak. This is completely usable as a standalone Thor patch, and basically that's the advantage of extending the available OSCs)


Low Frequency Oscillator

One of Thor's components that can be used as an OSC is the LFO. If you look closely at the available LFO rates, you'll see that the rate can be pushed to audible frequencies (so it's not as "Low Frequency" as one would expect, uh? ;).

LFO1 is easy to sync to the keyboard input, making it possible to control its frequency in the usual musical scale. To do the same with LFO2, you'll need to make some modulation routing.
The Pitch-Wheel can also be added to the mix, to control both LFO's like a normal OSC.

This will allow you to use the available LFO waveforms, musically, and with careful planning, an LFO can be a quick way to add a sub-OSC without sacrificing a regular OSC or resorting to a multi-synth Combinator.

So, 3 OSC + 2 LFO's that's 5 "OSCs" right ? We're missing 2 more, uh?


Filters

Self-Oscillating Filters (and the Comb Filter too, because of its special characteristics) can also be used as rudimentary OSCs :) ...do some experimenting and you'll see how easy it is to do so, locking the filter frequency to the keyboard tracking, so it can also be played musically, like any other OSC.


Polyphony

One thing to keep in mind is that, any component in the "dark/black" slots of Thor, is polyphonic, i.e. it'll have as many simultaneous instances triggered as there are notes played, the limit being what's set as the maximum polyphony. This makes the 3 OSC's, Filter's 1 & 2, the LFO1 and the Mod, Filter and Amp Envelope Generators, "polyphonic".

The same doesn't apply to Filter 3, Global Envelope and LFO2, making it "monophonic".
(Maybe now you understand why these show up in a different section on the available Modulation Matrix Source/Target possibilities)

This is why this patch mentions "6 poly OSCs + 1 mono OSC", where the mono OSC is LFO2.

So, with all these hints, can you achieve a phat 8xOSC monophonic Thor patch ? ;)

Monday, November 23, 2009

Quick Tip: NN-XT controllable Sample Start

Usually, whenever we need to do some real-time messing with the Sample Start, we usually discard the NN-XT (because there's no way to automate it's sample-based Start/End, and Loop Start/End settings) ...
...and think immediately of the NN-19 because it has, right there, on the upper right corner, a little knob to easily tweak the Sample Start, controllable through Combinator's modulation routing matrix...
...but, there's a way to do the same thing with the NN-XT, indirectly :P

There's a NN-XT setting that can be used to do exactly the same thing and be as controllable but through CV and affect all the loaded samples at the same time. :)

Turning the NN-XT's Velocity S.Start all the way to the right will mimic the NN-19 Sample Start behavior, controllable by the CV values sent to the Gate CV input at the back of the NN-XT.


Now, imagine using Thor's Sequencer Note and Gate/Velocity CV outputs to control the NN-XT (or a NN-19 inside a combinator) taking advantage of the high rate resolution... can you see what's possible to do ? ;)


BTW, NN-19 reminds me of
Paul Hardcastle's "Na-Na Na-Na Nineteen"

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Quick Challenge: Thor has 6 polyphonic OSC's (and more...)

You know that Thor can have up to 8 independent built-in OSC's, 6 of them being polyphonic, don't you?

A future Quick Tip will show you how to turn LFO1, Filter1 and Filter2 into perfectly playable sound producing polyphonic oscillators, and LFO2 and Filter3 as monophonic oscillators :P

It's even possible to a certain degree to use Thor's Sequencer as a "user-definable" wave-shape monophonic OSC, but... I haven't sorted out some quirks with it, so... forget I mentioned this one ;) (at least for now!)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Quick Demo: CV Graph, CV Display, CV Scope, ...

Sorry, but I only have time to show what's possible to do with some of the available rack devices, to show the CV values, like I mentioned in my previous post.

It also shows one possible version of the CV Scope, using the CV Delay and CV2Audio2CV :)


As soon as I have the time, I'll explain in detail how to achieve each of those unusual device uses.

It's quite simple, as many will quickly figure out. Some of you may already use something similar to do your CV debugging, like I do.