I'm hoping I can bother some of you for some thoughts on my system makeover plan.

So far my strategy has been to cram as much capability into my small case as possible, but it's ended up just feeling like a bit of a mess, and with all the micro sized module's and mini pots it's also become a PITA to play.

So my plan is to simplify down my system to a more clear and sensible instrument, which will hopefully be more inviting to create on.

Here is the plan:

ModularGrid Rack

Quick rundown:

-I like the sound and the immediacy of the STO's, I only have one currently but I think 2 will compliment each other nicely.

-I have one 3 sisters currently. I really enjoy using it as a sound source, but also as a filter. So having 2 only makes sense.

-The SY0.5 is mainly for percussion.

-The Piston Honda will typically be for drones or waveshaping.

-The Koma VCA and the Dynamix will provide shaping and control over the sound sources.

-The Chronoblob and Clouds will be the systems effects(leaving room for clouds v2 here).

-From my little understanding of it the Cold Mac seems like it can fill many many useful utility duties, in 8hp it seems a no brainer for a small setup otherwise lacking in utilities.

One more thing to note is the bottom row is in its own seperate sequencing skiff, so that extra space is an illusion :p

I feel like it looks good.. But my modulargrid intuition has failed me before so my trust in my own judgement is feeling a bit shaken..

So please, any thoughts/critiques are very much appreciated!

If you're getting the Batumi, get the Poti expander. It's cheap and gives you instant access to different wave shapes, sync/reset options, etc. Most of these functions can be changed by pulling the module and moving jumpers without the Poti. But why suffer that kind of torment?

If you're getting the Batumi, get the Poti expander. It's cheap and gives you instant access to different wave shapes, sync/reset options, etc. Most of these functions can be changed by pulling the module and moving jumpers without the Poti. But why suffer that kind of torment?
-- Ronin1973

Hi Ronin1973, I’ve had the Batumi for some time now. I thought about getting the Poti for awhile because ya, pulling it in and out to change waveforms was kind of annoying.. But then some months ago this kind person made this alternate firmware(http://voltexture.hiho.jp/batumi-individual-wavebank-firmware-v1-0-released/)! This added random waveform types(which is typically all I use now) for the middle outputs as well as a new layer of menu to control the type. The added complexity paired with the expert firmware made it a bit of a learning curve, but now that I have it down it feels totally worth it.

So far, so good! This is definitely on the right track. DO make sure and get some sort of isolated stereo out module for your level step-down as well as isolating out any noise/hum/crap. Happy Nerding's got this one that I really dig, fits in 6 hp, and it gives you two stereo busses in with an extra level control...great for parallel processing your final mix with some FX and having direct control over the FX return. Plus, nice metering and a 1/4" stereo headphone out as well. A reverb might be nice, too...check that Purrtronics digital that came out some months back, as it has a mono-in/stereo-out architecture that would mesh really well with that second stereo bus on the HN module.

Thanks for the reply Luigia! Though I've more or less scrapped the plan from yesterday now(this is the final revision, I'm promising myself that)... I've realized that to truly craft the instrument I want I just need to more or less start over.

That said, Behold...!

ModularGrid Rack

Okay I also just really love how this system looks, but it also seems like it would be a lazerbeam of precision awesomeness to play..

To address some of your previous points - I do run my whole modular system through a Mackie 802VLZ4, which seems to more or less handle the modular levels, though I really have no comparison as this is the only way I've ever done it. Would you still think I could benefit from an output module?
I do have a seperate little 48 hp case which I'm currently using as a little System Concrete style sampler, but I could turn it into an output buffer zone... Maybe with Mutable Instruments Clouds, a Cwejman VC-SC and that Happy Nerding unit you mentioned... Now I'm getting into dreaming territory though :P

Also, I have an Eventide Space connected to the Aux-Send of said mixer, so am covered on the reverb front.

Any thoughts on this current plan?

(edit) Am debating now between Tides v2 and Just Friends.. I feel like I understand the capabilities of Tides a lot more, and that makes it more inviting.. But something about the mystique of Just Friends is hard to shake. It's almost as if because I understand it less it seems more capable -_-

Yes, the Mackie VLZs will handle synth level appropriately. Just back the trims way down, and there you go. I have an original 1202 that I've had for over 25 years, used it for literally everything imaginable, and it takes loads of signal level abuse and keeps on rolling. Even so, an output module with isolation can tease out some benefits in lowering noise floors, eliminating any potential of groundlooping, and the like. Since you're doing your FX on the Mackie's AUXes, there's another Happy Nerding output module that's just a straight stereo out...but with transformer isolation, and there is definitely some audio benefits to having a bit of 'iron' in your output path like that. Adds a touch of enharmonic nonlinearity that warms up sounds, as a rule, without really mangling them...unless (and this is a benefit, too) you push the transformers into saturation with some high levels, in which case you'll get a nice, warm, wooly saturated sound that you'll likely find some uses for.