About My Modular [2014] / by BendingBus

Well, the new modular synth is up and running! 

Why modular? If you're into the primordial thing that is sound itself, not a specific instrument, it's the ideal sound-shaping tool for studio work. You can craft nearly any imaginable sound using a modular; strings, bells, percussion, cymbals, ocean waves, a dying cat, as well as otherworldly abstract sounds. The audio quality, and all the available outputs, make it a serious tool in the studio. 

The system uses MU modules (which stands for "Moog Unit"), the original large format of the 70s. The system is equally split between MOTM and MacBeth modules. MOTM modules have a clean "modern" tone, big as a house sound, and highly musical. MacBeth has a slightly more "retro" tone. Both are among the best sounding synths available, very hi-fi to my ears. 

Modular synth  setup 2014

Modular synth setup 2014

The modules are controlled by a central unit -- the MOTM-650 (one of those rare "vintage digital" pieces that is long out of production but simply can't be beat). This unit takes notes played on the keyboard and converts them into controlled voltage, which is sent out to the modules. What makes it special is that it outputs pure intonation with deadly accuracy (1.00 volt = root note, 1.25v = a major third, 1.50v = a perfect fifth, 2.00v = octave, etc, all user programable). And it's polyphonic, controlling up to four oscillators gracefully. 

Rhythmic patches are controlled by a MOTM-730 (also discontinued, but Paul Schreiber built me one). 

Ross Lamond in the UK created a fantastic custom cabinet out of cherry wood, outfitted with dual power supplies... 

Lamond Design  custom case

Lamond Design custom case

Finally, for monitors I wired up a pair of Focal CMS-50. These little guys have fantastic thick midrange, which is where you want the focus for synth recording.