CatSynth Pic: Häbbmaster modules

Cat showing off this collection of unique custom synth modules from Häbbmaster. Via haebmaster on Instagram.

You can hear a bit of of his percussion modules in this video.

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A little bouncing ball demo. #sdiy #sergesynthesizer #sergemodular Sound is from the smooth generator, pitch modulated by a sequencer . Upper half of the DUSG is a sawtooth modulating the speed of the lower half and triggers the sequencer. Lower half triggers the envelope which controls a low pass gate.

A post shared by Rainer Burkhardt (@haebbmaster) on

NAMM 2019: Korg Volca Modular and Minilogue XD

We can always count on something new from Korg these days. Sometimes it’s completely new, but this year it was new incarnations of existing lines. We introduced them in a recent CatSynth TV episode and describe them in more detail below.

The Volca series continues to grow with its newest offering, the Volca Modular.

Korg Volca Modular

The Volca Modular is a self-contained semi-modular synthesizer in a tiny volca-sized package. It has a VCO and modulator for complex waveforms, a function section with envelopes and an LFO, a sequencer, and various patch points for splitting and mixing. Its novel element is the LPG, a low pass gate that can be used as an amp, a filter, or something completely different a la west-coast synthesis. It puts quite a lot in a little box for just $199.

It reminds a bit of some other “tiny tabletop semi-modular synthesizers” such as the Moog Werkstatt or the newer Bastl Instruments Softpop (my CDP bandmate Tom Djll uses one of these and thus I want one, too). Like those, the Volca Modular has tiny little patch points and chords, which are adorable. But unlike those, I found it difficult to patch. The wire tips were a bit flimsy and I bent at least one of them trying to create a new patch on the fly. Otherwise, though, I think this is a fine little instrument, and could end up in my Volca collection.

Minilogue XD

The other new instrument was the revamped Minilogue XD. The original Minilogue made quite a splash a couple of years ago as an affordable polyphonic analog synthesizer. In addition to a nice, darker finish, the XD adds their expandable digital wavetable technology from last year’s Prologue. The digital engine has several different oscillator types and functions, and is essentially a “third sound source” for the instrument. It’s not clear to me whether this includes the same open API that the Prologue has, which would be an unfortunate omission for us at CatSynth, though probably not an issue for most users. It also has microtonal capabilities, something which is missing from many structured MIDI-analog combinations.

Both of these instruments are interesting, incremental changes, with Korg seemingly defending the turf it established in the synthesizer resurgence. Neither is a top priority for us at CatSynth, but I would be surprised if they find their way to us at some point.

CatSynth Pic: Rackmount Cat

A new picture from our friends Eric and Marcel at polynominal.com

Rackmount cat: done

A lot of amazing gear in this one picture. We leave it as an exercise to our readers to identify (but there are some hints in the tags).

CatSynth Pic: Zoe, Modular, and Roland SH-01

Zoe sits atop a mixer next to a red Roland SH-01 and a large modular synthesizer.  The mixer seems to be her preferred spot.

From Mike Weakley via that same thread on Synthesizer Freaks from yesterday’s post.

CatSynth Pic: Trix and Modular Synth

Trix returns, this time with a rather impressive tower of synth modules!

By PJay Nyex via Facebook.

CatSynth Video: Nemo and Modular

Nemo the cat plays a modular synth via Novation and Arturia controllers 😺🎛.  From Stefano Girola (@squarewaves) on Instagram.

CatSynth Video: Electrofunk Cat (Shadow Justice Crew)

Cute cat with a modular system featuring Bug Brand and Serge-inspired modules.  From Shadow Justice Crew on Instagram.

CatSynth Pic: Trix

Meet Trix, who has quite a collection of modular and other synthesizers.  By PJay Nyex via Facebook.

Identification of the synths left as an exercise to the reader 😺🎹

CatSynth Pic: Maine Coon and Modular

Cute maine coon kitten with modular synthesizer.  I see a Make Noise Rene peeking out from under her, next to Harvestman and Serge modules.

From chichi_response on Instagram.

chichi_response
I will make the sounds for you

You can see a previous post from chichi_response here.

CatSynth Video: Modular Session with Marcel

Handsome Marcel returns, and enjoys participating in a modular-synth session with his human polynominal.  Both are longtime friends of CatSynth and you can see their previous posts here.