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Sunday
May252014

Pittsburgh Modular Announces A New line of Limited Edition Modules


Three years ago Pittsburgh Modular Synthesizers started as a crazy idea to sell a few strange, handmade modules out of a basement. Thanks to your enormous response to those modules we've grown meteorically.

Shipping modules and instruments in large numbers takes a tremendous amount of time and resources. Resources that we can not commit to every idea we have. While we have been working hard to expand and improve our manufacturing capabilities, at heart Pittsburgh Modular is still a small company that remains committed to producing high quality, hand made electronic instruments. Over the past few years, we have chosen to focus our energy on modules that make up the core of our amazing synthesizers. Because of this, we have a lot of concepts and a lot of modules that were designed but never sold. Most of our ideas are too strange to fit in with what Pittsburgh Modular has become and it would be impossible for us to maintain a product line that included all of our designs. Still, we want the modules for our systems so here is the idea...

We are starting a line of limited edition modules as a way to share some of our more esoteric designs with the world. The modules will range from chaotic and noisy, to simple, to over the top.  Each production run will be limited to 50 modules, and each module will be hand signed and numbered on the rear of the panel. All limited edition modules will be available for sale exclusively on shop.pittsburghmodular.com, and once they are gone, they are gone.

We are pleased to announce the Dual Ring, our first limited edition module. The Dual Ring houses a pair of ring modulators with linked inputs and an output mixer, creating unique sonic and signal routing possibilities. The Dual Ring was a request of our good friend Dave Skipper. We were a little skeptical at first but the results prove this was an inspired idea.

The Dual Ring is available now at shop.pittsburghmodular.com

Wednesday
Mar262014

Cell Cases Now Shipping with Improved Power System

CELL [48] And CELL[90] cases are now shipping with an improved power system. The new flexible power rail allows for easier module installs and is +5v and eurorack bus compatible. The new Cell case power system is easier to use. Eurorack modules are installed simply by attaching the power ribbon cable included with the module to the new flexible power rail. The power rail uses keyed headers to ensure a safe and correct connection each time.

Monday
Feb242014

Pittsburgh Modular Records Presents Black Sun - Lightning In A Bottle Video

The video for Black Sun - Lightning in a Bottle (Soy Sos Mix). This is the first video off the new Pittsburgh Modular Records Encryption Cipher LP. The video is by Hard Science. All of the effects in this video were made using LZX Visionary video synthesizer modules. Other than Adobe Premiere for editing, no other software was used.

The Encryption Cipher release party will be on March 7th at 720 Music Clothing and Cafe. The event will feature performances from many of Pittsburgh’s top MCs including: Jon Quest, Shad Ali, Crystal Seth, R Sin, and Hunter with more TBA. Doors at 9pm. The LP will be available for sale at the event and afterwards at 720.

The LP follows Encryption Cipher Pt.1, a digital-only release. The project combines modular electronics with the production prowess of Tuff Sound Encoding to present a record that highlights the most talented MCs from Pittsburgh and beyond. Rugged rhymes meet strange and satisfying beats as veteran producer Soy Sos (3 Generations Walking, Soma Mestizo) and brash newcomer, DJ Thermos, create soundscapes for the dancefloor and headphones. If Run The Jewels collaborated with Brainfeeder and Diplo, it might sound like this.

Wednesday
Feb052014

PITTSBURGH MODULAR WAVEFORMS OSCILLATOR DEMO

Waveforms

Complex Waveform Oscillator
Suggested Retail Price - $239

A wide range, high quality, complex VCO designed to be the core of a modern, analog synthesizer. The Waveforms module offers a full complement of standard waveforms including sine, triangle, saw, and pulse waves in addition to a sub octave generator and a unique modulatable blade wave. The oscillator offers 5 octaves of 1 volt per octave tracking, and a frequency range starting as low as 7 seconds per cycle, allowing it to double as an LFO. Additional features include oscillator reset for hard syncing, attenuated linear or exponential FM input, pulse width, and pulse width CV input.

The centerpiece of our 2nd generation oscillator is the extreme amount of modulation options available. Frequency modulation is switchable between linear and exponential and pulse width modulation is augmented with a manual pulse width control in addition to a dedicated pulse width cv input attenuator.

The blade wave is a saw wave pitched one octave above the core frequency of the oscillator. What makes the blade wave unique is how many modulation options are available at the same time.

The shape of the blade wave can be controlled using the pulse width CV input and attenuator creating a sweeping or chorus effect on the wave. The manual pulse width control can be used to manually sweep the blade wave. When used in combination with the pulse width CV input and attenuator, the manual pulse width control sets the positive or negative starting point of the pulse width CV input and attenuator. In addition to the pulse width controls, the blade wave has a dedicated modulation CV input and attenuator. Using the blade CV input and attenuator creates a shifting or pulsing effect. The third option for blade wave modulation is the most extreme. The wave shape of the modulation source plugged into the Blade In jack directly defines the overall shape of the blade wave. Using a low frequency modulation source creates a square wave amplitude modulation effect. Using an audio rate modulation source creates waveshaping effects similar to ring modulation. Using any combination of the 3 modulation sources produces a living, breathing, evolving waveform that is still capable of tracking 1 volt per octave.

The sub oscillator is a CMOS based square wave pitched one octave below the core frequency of the oscillator. It can be controlled using the pulse width controls to create 2 distinct effects. Using the pulse width CV input and attenuator creates a unique pulse width modulation effect.   Adjusting the manual pulse width control sets the range of the modulation. Setting the pulse width range control to the extreme left or right creates a gate effect on the sub oscillator allowing it to be switched on and off within the oscillator.

Sunday
Jan192014

PITTSBURGH MODULAR WINTER 2014 NEW PRODUCT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Pittsburgh Modular is starting off 2014 with a host of new modules, complete systems, and a great addition to our line of cases. 

NEW MODULES

 

DNA Symbiotic Waves

The Pittsburgh Modular DNA Symbiotic Waves is a powerful 8-bit digital oscillator and waveform processor. A unique dual oscillator system paired with a comprehensive waveform processing and modulation section. Even with all this power, the interface of the Symbiotic Waves module is as intuitive and easy to use as all of the analog Pittsburgh Modular eurorack modules. Nothing is hidden behind layers of menus, secret button combinations, or hard to understand graphics. This is naked digital synthesis.

 

Envelope

The Pittsburgh Modular Envelope is a complex multi-stage envelope generator with voltage controllable rise and fall. Using the sustain switch to toggle between modes, the Envelope functions as either a 2 stage attack-decay envelope or a 3 stage attack-sustain-release envelope.

 

Lopass Gate (LPG)

The Pittsburgh Modular Lopass Gate module is a new take on a classic. Our intention was not to clone but to reengineer and expand on the original circuit. Our module includes an amazing new self-oscillating resonance circuit and a quieter vactrol based VCA circuit with true unity gain. Voltage control of the module is handled using an invertible, attenuated input and ping input. The ping input takes any gate or square wave and converts it into a very tight trigger used to ping the vactrol.

 

Mix Mult

The Mix Mult is a multifunction utility module. The module combines three important functions into a single module. A high quality three channel mixer and/or attenuator and two sets of passive multiples.

 

Phase Shifter

The Pittsburgh Modular Phase Shifter is a complex, 16 stage, analog effect module designed to expand on the classic swirls, rich swooshes, and doppler effects associated with the phaser.

 

Synthesizer Box

Wired for instant access to classic tones without needing a single patch cable, the Synthesizer Box is a modern, complete semi-modular, monophonic synthesizer module. The Synthesizer Box is 100% analog and 100% Eurorack compatible with a complete set of patch points able to override the internal audio and CV signal paths.

 

Waveforms

A wide range, high quality, complex VCO designed to be the core of a modern, analog synthesizer. The Waveforms module offers a full complement of standard waveforms including sine, triangle, saw, and pulse waves in addition to a sub octave generator and a unique modulatable blade wave. The oscillator offers 5 octaves of 1 volt per octave tracking, and a frequency range starting as low as 7 seconds per cycle, allowing it to double as an LFO. Additional features include oscillator reset for hard syncing, attenuated linear or exponential FM input, pulse width, and pulse width CV input.

 

NEW ROAD CASE

MOVE [104]

The Pittsburgh Modular Move [104] is a fully featured, roadworthy eurorack case and power supply designed to safely house and power up to 104hp worth of eurorack modules.

The Move [104] case includes a removable lid. When attached, the lid fits over the patch cables allowing a fully patched modular to hit the road.

Powered with the new Pittsburgh Modular Power Rail supplying +12v/-12v/+5v power, the Move[104] is designed for maximum compatibility with non-Pittsburgh Modular eurorack modules.

 

NEW SYSTEMS

SYSTEM 10

MASSIVELY SMALL MODULAR

The Pittsburgh Modular System 10 offers direct access to a wide array of classic analog monosynth sounds. Without a single patch cable, deep bass and warm sweeping leads are just a few knob tweaks away.

SEMI-MODULAR SOUND LAB

Plugging in a few patch cables opens the Pittsburgh Modular System 10 to complex experimentation by offering unlimited control over both the modulation and audio signal paths. The full functionality of the Waveforms Oscillator, Lopass Gate, LFO, Envelope Generator, VCA, Midi, Mixer, and Outputs can be split apart and used as standalone modular synthesizer modules. All of the elements of a classic voltage controlled, modular synthesizer are available as an open, patchable, modern synth.

 

SYSTEM 90

HYBRID INTELLIGENCE

A perfect balance of digital depth and analog warmth, the System 90 creates a cutting edge playground for endless experimentation. The System 90 was designed around the complex power of the digital DNA Symbiotic Waves oscillator and the rich modulation options of the analog Waveforms oscillator. The analog/ digital tag team creates an amazing sounding synthesizer with unmatched potential.

ANALOG AND DIGITAL OSCILLATORS

At the core of the System 90 beats two very different hearts. The first is a 2nd generation, analog, complex waveform oscillator. The oscillator offers a full complement of waveforms and a serious set of modulation options. The second heart of the System 3 is the DNA Symbiotic Waves module, a powerful digital oscillator and waveform processor. It is a unique dual oscillator system paired with a comprehensive waveform processing and modulation section.

 

FOUNDATION 3

FIRE BREATHING DRAGON

The Foundation 3 is the next generation of a classic. A standalone, fully modular synthesizer styled after the great monosynths of the past with no hardwired signal path or fixed voice architecture to restrict creativity. Complex waveform oscillators and multiple filters driving an all analog signal path pushes the Foundation 3 to new worlds of sonic creativity.

COMPLEX ANALOG OSCILLATORS

At the heart of the Foundation 3 is a pair of 2nd generation, complex waveform oscillators. The oscillators offer a full complement of standard waveforms including sine, triangle, saw, and pulse waves in addition to a sub octave generator, modulatable blade wave, and serious modulation options, creating a huge sonic base to build on.