Help moving from nodes to modules
  • so, I've used Audulus on OSX, primarily inside the AU since way way back ... I've enjoyed watching Audulus evolve over the years. It's flat out amazing, I have to say.

    Thing is, as I have been using it on the desktop platform, Audulus has been my Swiss Army knife. I pull it out when I need it, which is honestly pretty sporadically (depending on the project I'm working on). Every time I open it up I'm like "holy crap look at all this new stuff!", then I dive in and start catching up.

    I finally got an iPad, and I finally got Audulus on it last week, and so now I'm using it less as a tool and more as a playground. And just like every time I drop back into the Audulus scene, I'm completely blown away by all the new stuff. This time, I feel like I've dropped into the middle of the Cambrian explosion. I need some help making sense of all this.

    Nodes I get, but I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around the standards for interconnecting all these new modules.
    For instance, take the String Exciter ... very cool, however, I can't hook the keyboard up to it. It takes "o" as an input not hz which is what the keyboard spits out. I tried piping the Hz output of the keyboard through a Hz2o node, but the module still doesn't produce any output?

    Scale Quantizer and a whole lot of other modules want "o" as an input. I just don't understand how to use what I'm looking at.
    There are a few other inputs and outputs labeled with symbols I don't recognize like "e". I suspect these must be standards borrowed from the modular synth world, but I hardly know anything about it other than that it exists and all the lights and wires look f-Ing cool. :-)

    Actually I think "o" is my entry point. I have a feeling if someone can get me over that hump, the rest will start to make sense.
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  • Hey plurgid! Glad you're liking the new Audulus :)

    We're going to upload a new documentation section on the website soon, but it basically contains all this info here about each signal and what they look like and what they do.

    Are you familiar with modular synthesis in general and just need the patch below as a key, or after reading it, are you still lost? Let me know and I'll fill in the gaps!
    Input Output Glossary.audulus
  • Cheers, Plurgid!

    Looking at the screencap, I would say the adsr is the reason no sound is coming out. The String Exciter is Karplus Strong synthesis so you don't really need a traditional envelope signal.
    Screen Shot 2017-02-25 at 2.27.55 PM.png
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  • Mind == blown!
    My god, that room full of gear must have cost a fortune. I have an inexplicable desire to have one of those now! Wow that's cool.

    Yeah modular synthesis is not anything I know about really, not real physical stuff anyhow. I've plugged things up in reaktor now and then, but that and Audulus are about as close as I've ever gotten to it. Not that I'm completely unfamiliar with general synthesis concepts, but this is definitely new way of thinking about it for me.

    Thanks for the glossary, that's exactly what I'm looking for!
  • I know right? I'm going to a modular meet-up tomorrow where a bunch of tech dudes are going to have their huge set-ups. I'm gonna be there with just a few oscillators and Audulus, deeply suppressing my desire to go deep into credit card debt.
  • @plurgid... It also took me a while to understand the thinking behind the new module library as I have no experience of hardware modulars.

    The way I look at it now is that the objects in the module library are higher level than the native Audulus nodes, they are primarily designed to interoperate with each other rather than the native lower level Audulus nodes (although that is still possible in many circumstances)

    This is because the module library is an attempt to build a virtual representation of hardware modulars with their patch cables etc.. This is similar to Reaktor Blocks or the Softube Modular. So in the real modular world you can largely cable any output to any input and I think the Audulus module library allows for the same approach.

    This means that inputs and outputs need to follow a more standardised format and from what I can tell this is making sure that all control signals operate in the 0-1 range, even with pitch 0-1 is an octave rather than the Hz input used by the native nodes. In my experience if you are starting out with module library then its best to stick with modules from the module library even for the basic ones like envelopes and oscillators. They should work better together.

    There are advantages to this, certainly for quick patch and play the module library is faster to build patches. Also if everyone builds modules to a similar spec then user creations should work with the library better, higher level abstractions tend to make things easier for more users..

    Anyway that's my 2 cents... @Biminiroad, do correct me if I'm wrong on any of this..

    One question for all the modular heads here, in the Audulus module library control signals are generally ranging from 0-1 but Audio signals are -1 to 1.. If you want to do audio rate modulations then the audio signal needs to be converted. Is this an issue in the 'real' hardware world?
  • Well in my experience the module designers all have different approaches to to how modulation inputs deal with bipolar voltage. Some will just truncate the signal below 0 like the expr "clamp(x,0,1)" or rectify the wave "abs(x)" which sounds like a doubling of the modulation frequency. There are also modules like Makenoise Maths which allow you to attenuate and offset an audio signal so that it is all positive voltage, like "(x+1)/2" in Audulus.

    Personally I still like to take apart the library modules and make my own versions of them. Knowing how nodes work is the better skill set for long-term enjoyment of Audulus and seeing how others use them is best for comparative analysis. I rarely use the more complex modules except for a temporary solution before deconstructing them. I will say that the utility (and not just the ones in utility but a lot of the practical stuff in math) and LFO modules might be an exception.
  • @RobertSyrett - you know about creating your own custom library right? You can do it easily on the computer (Audulus 3 -> Open Modules Folder -> (Place custom folder here) -> Now available as right click option), and in the iOS version you can add your own modules to the library as well just by tapping on a module and pressing "Add Module."
  • @biminiroad, I actually thought that was a iPad only thing, like tag search and screen midi keys. LOL