20/ Smartphones and Beyond

Modular Diary – 058

Mark Boyd has posted an Audulus Digital-Analog Hybrid Guide on with some thoughts on the advantages of mixing the limitlessness of software with the focus and sound that hardware might offer.

Interestingly Darwin Grosse recently interviewed Make Noise Music’s Walker Farrell on a recent episode of his Art + Music + Technology podcast, also discussing, amongst other things, what it is that computers might offer in modular contexts.

Modular Diary – 015

It seems to me that a large part of the increase in activity on the Audulus forum during the last half year has been due to recreations of hardware modules/instruments. The hardware models seem to provide a useful grounding – something to kick against in the open space of the software platform. In the absence of owning any hardware syths at the moment I’ve also found the fixity of app recreations – the Moog, Ripplemaker and VCS3 apps that I’ve looked at, a useful counterpart to the openess of instruments/devices created in Audulus. I do keep coming back to Audulus though – it still ends up being the place to get on with some real building after diving into the behaviour of the other apps.

A few weeks ago I had the Korg 2015 version of the ARP Odyssey under my fingers on a visit to a music shop, and now the Korg ODYSSEi also has it’s place on my iPad. While not exactly a modular synthesizer it has a wealth of routing options that make it extremely flexible, while at the same time practical to use as an instrument. GForce have created their own software version of it – the Oddity – and also provide a wonderful introduction to the original as part of their synth archive. As they mention in the video this can be a bit of an in-your-face punk instrument. The opposite of the distant spaciness of the (i)VCS3.

The iPad ODDYSEi sounds great, and especially with the white Rev. 1 face is a visual pleasure as well. The fader interface design1 (there are no knobs on this synth) seems well suited to an iPad touch-screen. I was delighted to find that the analogue tuning has been modelled as well. One can shift between pure equal temperament and the analogue version if it and clearly hear the differences. Richard D. James talks about layering similar differences between equal temperament and the analogue tuning of the Roland SH101 in his interview with Tatsuya Takahashi.

  1. With handy tooltips too.