Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by stepvhen » Tue Jul 28, 2020 9:15 pm

There are a lot of college kids who are eager to show how smart (or clever) they are. Or at least, there is always one around somewhere. Or at least, if engineering classes are anything like CompSci, there is usually one in one of your classes most semesters (less so in graduate courses).

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by Mr.Kus » Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:32 am

My experience from both engineering and computer science studies was that the information from classes where lecturer spoke alone was much more efficiently obtainable by reading a book and skipping the class. Classes with more open conversations provided a lot of knowledge that was not so easy to get just by studying alone.

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by AugustusArnone » Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:36 am

Totally off topic, I know, but after logging some hours with a ZPO after owning a Rubicon, my impression is simply these are two totally different sounding oscillators. The cool thing about both is the enormous range of timbres they both offer, and the multitude of simultaneous waveform outputs. I'm probably merely stating the obvious, but I think there's not s lot of redundancy in owning both. I also don't think they should be pitted against each other any more than against any other oscillator. The FM modulation on the ZPO sounds totally different than normal FM modulation, through zero or otherwise, because it has AM mixed in.

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by Dr. Sketch-n-Etch » Fri Jul 31, 2020 7:03 pm

keyofnight wrote:
Tue Jul 28, 2020 2:00 am
Dr. Sketch-n-Etch wrote:
Fri Jul 24, 2020 3:02 pm
Yes, engineering profs hate students who want to delve more deeply into the science in class. It interrupts the flow of the class and wastes everyones time, and most often is just a way of saying "Hey, look at me! Look how smart I am!" Pick up one of the infinite number of books on the topic and read it to your heart's content on your own time -- that's my advice to such students.
Hm. How cynical. :/
Well, I suggest that you stand in front of a class of 50 or 60 paying students, try to get through a lecture which is designed to take 50 minutes to deliver, with quite a few sophisticated concepts and worked examples, and then see how much you like it when some smart-ass monopolizes the discussion with some irrelevant sidebar while the other 49 or 59 students get more and more annoyed and impatient -- and then see if you still think I'm being cynical.

As far as the "nerd war" is concerned, and "science" vs "engineering," I'll just point this out: quite a few folks have designed through-zero VCOs. However, until very recently, only one delivered a reliable and affordable TZFM product and sold hundreds if not thousands of them. I'm talking about the Intellijel Rubicon and Rubicon 2. This is the difference between science and engineering: science is fun, but engineering is where the rubber hits the road.
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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by keyofnight » Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:00 pm

Dr. Sketch-n-Etch wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 7:03 pm
Well, I suggest that you stand in front of a class of 50 or 60 paying students, try to get through a lecture which is designed to take 50 minutes to deliver, with quite a few sophisticated concepts and worked examples, and then see how much you like it when some smart-ass monopolizes the discussion with some irrelevant sidebar while the other 49 or 59 students get more and more annoyed and impatient -- and then see if you still think I'm being cynical.
I'm not sure why you're presuming I haven't had that experience—given what I've told you about myself.

Yes, I've taught at the university level many times, and I've had lots of students like that. Students are students, though… and I just do my best to draw out the quiet ones and channel the enthusiasm of the talkative ones back into the material. Generally, I find that I just have to be open to figuring out how their comments relate to the lecture, and do my best to connect the dots back to some relevant part of it. If that's impossible, I just offer to talk to them after class so you can make it through the lecture? I mean, I'm sure I don't have to tell you any of this, you're much further along in academia than I am.
Dr. Sketch-n-Etch wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 7:03 pm
As far as the "nerd war" is concerned, and "science" vs "engineering," I'll just point this out: quite a few folks have designed through-zero VCOs. However, until very recently, only one delivered a reliable and affordable TZFM product and sold hundreds if not thousands of them. I'm talking about the Intellijel Rubicon and Rubicon 2. This is the difference between science and engineering: science is fun, but engineering is where the rubber hits the road.
This "science" vs "engineering" debate is not all that illuminating, as far as I'm concerned. "Science is fun, but engineering is where the rubber hits the road"? This is a funny slogan. Most of the scientists I know are deeply involved in engineering work (especially at my uni…where many of the scientists I know write patents, create products, and spin off startups). Most of the engineers I know do scientific work to understand the problems they want to solve, test their designs, and so on. I'm sure your university has seen similar crosstalk between science and engineering fields. (In fact, I'm pretty sure of it.) The distinctions between engineering and science are blurring more and more daily… but then again, they weren't very sharp in the first place. Further, many inquiries are better accomplished through interdisciplinary study / effort. All that to say, this weird "us" vs "them" stuff isn't all that helpful.

About the Rubicon… good job, and congratulations. People love the Rubicon. I hope you enjoy your success? There's no need to trash other people, though.
AugustusArnone wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:36 am
Totally off topic, I know, but after logging some hours with a ZPO after owning a Rubicon, my impression is simply these are two totally different sounding oscillators. The cool thing about both is the enormous range of timbres they both offer, and the multitude of simultaneous waveform outputs. I'm probably merely stating the obvious, but I think there's not s lot of redundancy in owning both. I also don't think they should be pitted against each other any more than against any other oscillator. The FM modulation on the ZPO sounds totally different than normal FM modulation, through zero or otherwise, because it has AM mixed in.
Thanks for the helpful comparison. I think this is usually the conclusion even for modules that are more similar than the ZPO and Rubicon2: they're different enough that you should buy both. The ability to shift between AM, FM, and some kind of bizzaro TZFM-thing so easily seemed to be a big part of the ZPO's appeal, for sure.
"…an answer which cannot be expressed the question too cannot be expressed. […] If a question can be put at all, then it can also be answered." Wittgenstein, Tractatus, §6.52

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by Dr. Sketch-n-Etch » Sat Aug 01, 2020 5:38 pm

I wasn't trying to trash-talk anyone, but the only TZFM VCO that was available when we first marketed the Rubicon was $1200 and not really "available" because the company making it had gone belly up at that point. Plus, I acquired one to test it against the Rubicon, only to discover that it didn't work. It also weighed a couple of pounds because it had so much circuitry in it -- the main PCB looked like a 1980s motherboard -- basically, an impossible module to troubleshoot and repair.

Also, concerning "science" vs "engineering" I don't really believe half the things I say. It's true that I never enjoyed doing science myself, but we do quite a bit of science in my lab at school. I have a brilliant chemist and all around science nerd in my lab, and he has been exceptionally productive when it comes to patentable matter. In fact, we have either received or applied for more than 10 patents since he has been with me. Also, the work we have done over the last five years has resulted in a spin-off company which has become very valuable indeed. In fact, there was a very positive story about it in the Financial Times earlier this week.
Tell me, someone: Alternate view! Alternate view, surely? Surely!?!

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by keyofnight » Sat Aug 01, 2020 9:42 pm

Dr. Sketch-n-Etch wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 5:38 pm
Also, concerning "science" vs "engineering" I don't really believe half the things I say. It's true that I never enjoyed doing science myself, but we do quite a bit of science in my lab at school. I have a brilliant chemist and all around science nerd in my lab, and he has been exceptionally productive when it comes to patentable matter. In fact, we have either received or applied for more than 10 patents since he has been with me. Also, the work we have done over the last five years has resulted in a spin-off company which has become very valuable indeed. In fact, there was a very positive story about it in the Financial Times earlier this week.
I know. 8-)

(Congrats on the story, btw. It always feels great when the lab gets press.)
"…an answer which cannot be expressed the question too cannot be expressed. […] If a question can be put at all, then it can also be answered." Wittgenstein, Tractatus, §6.52

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by VibratingMotorGate » Sun Aug 23, 2020 11:19 pm

I would like to recant what I said about the ZPO's FM "illusion" falling apart the lower the frequency range -- into something AM-like. After seeing the video again, it appears to be just like FM (maybe it's the "through zero" implementation that sounds slightly different?). It seems the ZPO has set a new bar, a totall game-changer. I'm still a bit dubious of the necessity behind the wave shaping/morphing section being so prominent, a video demonstrating that part in particular would be nice. The Dr. is right to be on full alert!

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by Besfar » Wed Sep 16, 2020 2:32 am

This is so boring im having a migraine just by skimming through the first three pages, and it totally made me forget what i came here for XD
Now i remember:

From the demos ive heard of rubicon, im hearing a more clinical sound (which is good). The zpo appears to be a bit more «warm» (also good). I am not a scientist.

So anyway, my 100% not engineering degree question is: which of these two can be more rubbery, dripping, runny and splatty when fm/am/whateverm-ed. Whitches Hyperdimensional brew, blop smut fzzzz smat whirl.

Sorry to bring in another osc, but like the dpo, in less hp :D

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by Dragonaut » Wed Sep 16, 2020 9:37 am

Besfar wrote:
Wed Sep 16, 2020 2:32 am
This is so boring im having a migraine just by skimming through the first three pages, and it totally made me forget what i came here for XD
Now i remember:

From the demos ive heard of rubicon, im hearing a more clinical sound (which is good). The zpo appears to be a bit more «warm» (also good). I am not a scientist.

So anyway, my 100% not engineering degree question is: which of these two can be more rubbery, dripping, runny and splatty when fm/am/whateverm-ed. Whitches Hyperdimensional brew, blop smut fzzzz smat whirl.

Sorry to bring in another osc, but like the dpo, in less hp :D
I don’t own the ZPO but the Rubicon definitely is capable of some SPLAT ZAP material once you start running it at super low rates and playing with the symmetry knob. I usually use it in a more traditional FM sense for bowed, plucked, and wooden sounds.

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by ferran » Thu Oct 22, 2020 11:23 am

I would like to add some simple comments about this thread, one of the most brutal I've read on muffwiggler. :eek:

Despite being an electronic engineer by training and I have read and understood this thread by 90%, in the end I got bored, 35 years ago I finished my studies, and frankly I have not looked at much again, except for specific issues not related to music.

I appreciate the efforts of the designers, they are incredible modules;
Dr Sketch is right about some things and I understand his position, but for me from the moment I made the decision to buy the ZPO, it was for musical reasons, not technical ones. Therefore I also understand the design of SSF, the reaction of analogPedagog and others.

What is clear is that I buy myself a musical instrument, not for a laboratory.

This is not an electronic fan forum, for me and for many people, the lack of purity of ZPO in TZFM is not so important, it was clear in the information on the SSF website.

Ah, finally, thanks to all contributors. :woah:

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by Funky40 » Thu Oct 22, 2020 4:38 pm

ferran wrote:
Thu Oct 22, 2020 11:23 am
What is clear is that I buy myself a musical instrument, not for a laboratory.
totally !



some folks really seem to forget that.
also do some folks seem to forget that its not important to just have *the best* Sound available.
the determing factor if a given sound is muscial or not, is also determinated by the context.
and if "to patch" is fun is again determinated by other factors, for example the flexibility and the achiveable range.


i for example patch for fun, .....and not to win a formula 1 Race :lol:


but the discussion here on that TZFM topic, was one of the best ones ever :tu:

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by PlateOfShrimp » Thu Oct 22, 2020 5:07 pm

This thread is such a trip lol

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by Dr. Sketch-n-Etch » Fri Oct 23, 2020 4:58 pm

I am hesitant to add anything to this thread, but I'll just say this:

If you want a TZFM oscillator, you can rest assured that the Rubicon 2 is a TZFM oscillator. When I design circuits, it is never to "achieve a certain sound" -- I'm not nearly good enough at electronics to know whether a certain circuit is going to make a certain sound, and I can never anticipate how end users are going to use my designs (a good example of that is the famous MylarMelodies Atlantis video, where he made sounds I never would have thought could be possible with an Atlantis).

No, when I design a circuit, it is simply for it to be the thing I set out for it to be. In the case of the Rubicon, I set out to create an excellent through-zero-FM-capable tricore oscillator, and that's exactly what it is. I take pride in the fact that end users can rely on my circuits doing the thing that they are advertised to do, and do it well, without glitches or compromises. If you have no use for such a thing, then so be it. If you think another module makes better sounds, that's great. Just know that the Rubicon is exactly what I intended it to be.
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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by brandonlogic » Fri Oct 23, 2020 5:12 pm

both sound great to me! like i said before, zero point 'tzfm' has more harmonics, rubicon 'tzfm' sounds smother, like pure liquid.
whats better depends on what your going for and what kinds of sounds your into!

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by daphnid » Fri Oct 23, 2020 6:12 pm

PlateOfShrimp wrote:
Thu Oct 22, 2020 5:07 pm
This thread is such a trip lol
Lmao, for real. Not the most helpful thread if you're trying to decide which to buy. "Let's see ZPO or Rubi? Oh fuck, equations."

The design approaches of these two VCOs are clearly very different. If you read the ZPO copy it seems as it was designed through trial and error to create an oscillator capable of making range of sounds the designer thought were cool or useful by employing some modified concept of TZFM, while the Rubicon, as stated above by its designer, was made to be a conceptually pure TZFM VCO (which, if you know linear algebra you can see clearly that it is lol). Best off just listening to the demos.

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by Funky40 » Sat Oct 24, 2020 9:59 pm

brandonlogic wrote:
Fri Oct 23, 2020 5:12 pm
.......whats better depends on what your going for and what kinds of sounds your into!
quoted for truth.



there is another aspect to add to the equation: how much experience one can bring into play.
can make a difference vs. what would fit best.

......adding the Generate3 to the list, which is not the one i´d suggest to take for beginners, since it has very big pitch and index ranges that makes it way harder to find the spots.
so its good if one has the typical (TZFM) timbres allready in mind, which helps alots to find the good settings.

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by VibratingMotorGate » Mon Oct 26, 2020 5:19 pm

is there a video demonstrating the Rubicon 2's symmetry in "lock" while being modulated at the same time as the through zero fm in a musical context? This and the warp circuit for the sub seems to be the most prominent differentiator separating it from the competition. What happens when you modulate the warp circuit with it's own sub out?

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by Dr. Sketch-n-Etch » Tue Oct 27, 2020 7:26 pm

VibratingMotorGate wrote:
Mon Oct 26, 2020 5:19 pm
is there a video demonstrating the Rubicon 2's symmetry in "lock" while being modulated at the same time as the through zero fm in a musical context? This and the warp circuit for the sub seems to be the most prominent differentiator separating it from the competition. What happens when you modulate the warp circuit with it's own sub out?
You open a rift in the space-time continuum and end up in the Delta Quadrant.
Tell me, someone: Alternate view! Alternate view, surely? Surely!?!

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by VibratingMotorGate » Tue Oct 27, 2020 9:07 pm

that's a Star Trek: Voyager reference (the best of the Treks imo :sstorm: )

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by ari ellis » Tue Oct 27, 2020 10:38 pm

VibratingMotorGate wrote:
Mon Oct 26, 2020 5:19 pm
is there a video demonstrating the Rubicon 2's symmetry in "lock" while being modulated at the same time as the through zero fm in a musical context? This and the warp circuit for the sub seems to be the most prominent differentiator separating it from the competition. What happens when you modulate the warp circuit with it's own sub out?
I don't have a video, but, the symmetry input behaves just like an additional TZFM input (but without an index VCA). Also, the warp circuit isn't just for the sub --- the X input opens up a lot of fun uses :)

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by daphnid » Tue Oct 27, 2020 11:01 pm

VibratingMotorGate wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 9:07 pm
that's a Star Trek: Voyager reference (the best of the Treks imo :sstorm: )
Weird I'm watching Voyager right now. Honestly I think it'd make sense at this point to just turn this into a DS9 vs Voyager thread.

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by studioutopia » Wed Oct 28, 2020 7:43 am

ari ellis wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 10:38 pm
VibratingMotorGate wrote:
Mon Oct 26, 2020 5:19 pm
is there a video demonstrating the Rubicon 2's symmetry in "lock" while being modulated at the same time as the through zero fm in a musical context? This and the warp circuit for the sub seems to be the most prominent differentiator separating it from the competition. What happens when you modulate the warp circuit with it's own sub out?
I don't have a video, but, the symmetry input behaves just like an additional TZFM input (but without an index VCA). Also, the warp circuit isn't just for the sub --- the X input opens up a lot of fun uses :)
This is something that I didn't really expect to be so useful. The Warp circuit, with the Squish function, is absolutely amazing. Self patching the sine wave into X gives you a whole universe of wave shapes, and adding various slow modulations to PWM and WARP can create textures that rival wavetable oscillators for complexity and variation.

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by ari ellis » Wed Oct 28, 2020 8:46 am

studioutopia wrote:
Wed Oct 28, 2020 7:43 am
ari ellis wrote:
Tue Oct 27, 2020 10:38 pm
VibratingMotorGate wrote:
Mon Oct 26, 2020 5:19 pm
is there a video demonstrating the Rubicon 2's symmetry in "lock" while being modulated at the same time as the through zero fm in a musical context? This and the warp circuit for the sub seems to be the most prominent differentiator separating it from the competition. What happens when you modulate the warp circuit with it's own sub out?
I don't have a video, but, the symmetry input behaves just like an additional TZFM input (but without an index VCA). Also, the warp circuit isn't just for the sub --- the X input opens up a lot of fun uses :)
This is something that I didn't really expect to be so useful. The Warp circuit, with the Squish function, is absolutely amazing. Self patching the sine wave into X gives you a whole universe of wave shapes, and adding various slow modulations to PWM and WARP can create textures that rival wavetable oscillators for complexity and variation.
For an extra degree of control, try patching the sine through a VCA before it goes to the X input --- with squish on, this lets you control the amount of folding applied to the sine

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Re: Intellijel Rubicon 2 vs SSF Zero Point Oscillator

Post by geographer44 » Wed Oct 28, 2020 8:54 am

This is awesome thanks for all your work. Great video explanation. It's a shame that such helpful videos rarely get many views ;)

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