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Today marks the beginning of a new project here at Voltage Control Lab: the launch of our Monthly Starter Rack series! We have partnered with ModularGrid.Net to present a new set of modules monthly, designed as a recommended set of complimentary modules for a small but effective first step into Eurorack. Each month will feature a unique collection of modules serving different musical uses, always below the $1000 limit. We would love your input on which modules are keepers, and what alternatives you’d prefer or suggest, so let us know in the comments on the ModularGrid.Net VCL Monthly Starter Rack discussion!

Paired with some sort of expandable power and rack mount (such as the Happy Ending Kit from Tiptop Audio) and multi-purpose keyboard or sequencer (like the KMI QuNexus keyboard or the Korg SQ-1 sequencer), you will be able to play your instrument and have room to grow, as well as sync with other devices, route midi from your computer to your modular, and more.

This time, we’ve chosen a few complimentary modules to create a simple two oscillator synth voice. The main oscillator is the Doepfer A-110-2 Basic VCO, which includes 3 wave shape outputs for some timbral variation. The Eon from Qubit is a space efficient, multipurpose module, including a square wave oscillator, a noise generator and an attack/decay envelope. The self-oscillating multimode filter from the WMD/SSF pairing provides a few important filter types, as well as generating a sine wave when the resonance is maxxed.

Also included is the DPLPG from Meng Qi, a cheap passive VCA, as well as Maths by Make Noise. Maths is a popular, swiss army knife module, with two loopable attack/decay envelope generators, and many other functions. While it’s unity outputs don’t play very well with passive VCAs, the variable outputs do, leaving the unity outputs to be routed to another function. Finally, for some always important randomization, the QuBit NanoRand has been included,

Of course, the Eurorack world is growing by the day. Just this week has seen new modules from Mutable Instruments, Malekko and a number of other makers, as well as a new table top modular synth from Make Noise, the 0-Coast, and a major Eurorack interaction-focused update for Native Instruments Blocks. We’ll have more details on these devices soon, but with an already enormous selection of modules to pick from, the Monthly Starter Rack seemed like it might be an asset in making some of the tough decisions.

The VCL Monthly Starter Rack is not sponsored by any module makers, but we have used or tested most (if not all) of the modules that we include. Nonetheless, these racks are merely suggested starting points, which you can duplicate to your own ModularGrid.Net account to edit, rebuild and grow.

What would you add or remove from the rack? Let me know, and we might include your suggestions next month…!

Our next round of courses starts in a few weeks, including The Many Faces of Maths! Join us!!

New VCL Monthly Starter Eurorack Project

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