Distinction between LFO and VCO - what to do?



Should there be a distinction between VCOs and LFOs, or should all VCOs be able to go down to modulation ranges easily and vice versa?

A big part of the reason I separated them is that people just expect them to be separate. But they don’t necessarily need to be.



I think the main difference in unipolar v bipolar. The secondary distinction is that VCOs will take 1/oct signals where LFOs will have a frequency knob. Both of these differences make the distinction worthwhile.


Yeah but we could have dual outputs without much overhead? Just wondering aloud really dunno if this is crazy or not.


Especially when we have normalized inputs - which are coming - we could have octave inputs on LFOs with a separate frequency knob that goes in the typical 0-20Hz range.


Way to bury the lead! NORMALIZATION!!!
That will be awesome for everything, a real unlock in the design of things.

I still think it’s a good idea to have separate modules as opposed to modes on the module, as scaling and attenuating are so nice to have on the LFO but not the VCO and vis versa for timbral controls on a VCO. Naturally there can be a class that is both, but reducing complexity in the library modules is a good trend and one that should be maintained.


Good point - the built in attenuverters really make LFOs special. But maybe they can just have octave inputs eventually?

The F/AM LFO is so fun modulation wise it makes sense that it would be good in audio range.

I suppose its best to keep them separate even just to make things seem familiar to modular users.


Another thing to consider is LFOs are normally not anti-aliased whereas the built-in oscillator and modules based on it are. The anti aliasing is a good thing from an audio perspective but it’s nice to have LFOs that have a “pure” waveform.


Yes but this might be a moot point in future versions of Audulus with internal up/downsampling…Taylor has some really innovative ideas to make this a real amazing possibility.


As a basic user Im using vcos and lfos in the same way but Im thinking to make my lfos more useful I would like them to have min and max values. Im just getting round to thinking about how I would implement this.

Is max/min for lfos generally desired or is there an alternative e.g. offsets and a bit of scaling


You can use the crossfade node to get precise max/min values if offset and attenuate isn’t doing it for you:

It never hurts to know your nodes :slight_smile:


Thanks for that, Ill investigate the nodes.
Here is what I came up with. I love these little logic/math problems. I think that might be half the fun for me

LFO min:max.audulus (6.5 KB)


There’s a little bug in the design you made - I made a response patch that points out one way to make a min-max LFO. Wrote some comments in there, hope it makes sense!

LFO min_max Bimini Road Edit.audulus (14.8 KB)


Thanks. Im studying nodes, Phasor, Sample and Hold, expressions. Im very impressed with the documentation. Im still trying to find my workflow for Audulus. I was experimenting with skipping the design stage and going straight to build. Lots of fun but after two hours I decided to do the math on a piece of paper and I eventually got a much simpler design. The math is painfully simple but fun all the same. I was going to go all the way back to pencil and paper but used my apple pencil in the end.


Have you checked out @robertsyrett’s Know Your Nodes series? I bet you’ll really love it! Worth it to start at first video and work your way through - the knowledge builds from video to video.



I’ve gone through three or four legal pads working on Audulus. Sometimes you have to draw it out or do the math. I met @robertsyrett when I was visiting my son in Palo Alto and I was very impressed with his notebooks. You can definitely see his artistic talent at work. Mine are more like scribbles by comparison.


you and @robertsyrett have had a meeting of the minds and Audulus has not imploded?? Not convinced. We need some AV evidence of that :smile_cat:


@stschoen did we forget to take pictures?


Thanks for the tips @biminiroad
Im enjoying @robertsyrett know your nodes series.
It would be great to see any scribbles/notes/notebooks. I see lots of creativity here and it is addictive.


Sure, I dug up a page with lots of doodles on it. It’s pencil on graph paper, so it doesn’t photograph well. But enough excuses…


For contrast, here’s one of mine. I told you he was talented! :cowboy_hat_face: