Club of the Knobs

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SynthBaron
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by SynthBaron »

cornutt wrote: Wed Mar 30, 2022 5:28 pm
SynthBaron wrote: Wed Mar 30, 2022 1:35 pm At least Synth-werk is out there making a clone of the Bode shifters, both 5u and rackmount format. They also fixed the not shifting from zero to +- 5hz problem that Bob Moog couldn't figure out himself:
Now I'm curious... what was the issue?
I tried to find where someone said Bob couldn't get the circuit working right, I think it was Kevin Lightner. Couldn't find it. Anyway:

https://www.synthtopia.com/content/2021 ... y-shifter/

"The original Bode Frequency shifter and the SYNTH-WERK one consist of 4 boards packed with unique and hard to find components. All of them need to be selected and matched, otherwise you do not get the result it should be. Even most of the old Moog 1630 FS have a dead spot in the +-5Hz range because of not selected and aged components. The calibration work on the 1630 is very intensive and you have to adjust many, many trimmers in the right way and in the right flow. It took us about 3 years of research work to get it finally done."



"On this video you see the famous "dead spot" on the 5 Hz range of the original Bode Frequency shifter. This is a problem because it makes the 5Hz range impossible to use. It is the case on originals and on clones. Reading the patent and various descriptions from Harald Bode this should not be the case so we startet investigating this strange behaviour and we found the reason...It is a very complex relation between aging of components, bad quality cmponents and improper adustments. It is almost impossible to correct that on an old Bode Frequency Shifter because a lot of components could be involved."



You will not find this "dead spot" on the SW 1630 or 735 from SYNTH-WERK. As you can see on the video, the 5 Hz range is changing Hz by Hz in a very smooth way trough zero. Now this very important 5 Hz range is fully usable and offers a lot of sonic possibilities...Components matter!
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XXXEsq
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by XXXEsq »

jcr5213 wrote: Wed Mar 30, 2022 7:23 am I realize this thread has not been updated or replied to in a while, but I need to share my experience with this company.

I bought a Bode Frequency Shifter about 6 months ago from these guys. To say it was was extremely poorly packed would be a gross understatement.
...

Assuming the OP is being candid (which I do), there are really only 2 possibilities. It was badly packaged causing the damage, or (worse yet) it was already damaged when it was packed, possibly in an effort to blame the damage on the shipper or the customer. Neither is OK and any reputable business would replace it or refund the purchase. :foul:
Many years ago, I had a shipment arrive from a private seller that looked OK on the outside, but when opened, the device was badly damaged due to very poor packaging. Seller blew me off. Ended up in a PayPal dispute, which I won, but it took several months and was a PITA.
Since then, I run video on my phone whenever I open a shipping box for anything of value. I've only needed to use it one time when I ordered a desk for my wife and one of the shelves arrived with a seriously smashed corner. Due to the condition of the exterior box and the internal packaging, it was very clear it was damaged before it was boxed.
I emailed customer service, politely asked for a replacement shelf and sent a photo of the damage. After getting jerked around for a month, I sent a draft of a Yelp review and a demand for a refund. They refused the refund, accused me of lying claiming I must have dropped it, and actually threatened to sue me if I posted the review (which would have been an existential mistake!). I then sent a link to the video of my unpacking it from the sealed box, a draft of a small claims complaint, and gave them 48 hours to respond. They sent a replacement shelf the next day. Moral of the story, always record unboxing expensive purchases!
I've considered buying a few COTK modules over the years, but never have due to the numerous horror stories I've seen here and elsewhere. If they were in the US, they'd get sued. But I'm sure they know it's not worth the time or money to pursue them in another country, so the only thing that can stop this type of behavior is for people to share their experiences. (Photos are always helpful!) If they lose enough business, they'll either change or fold, either being acceptable outcomes.
As another option, I recently acquired one of Doc Sketchy's 5U Freak Shifts and its really superb! Doesn't have a built in LFO like the Bode, but does have sine and cosine mod ins, so any quadrature oscillator works great. :sb:
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KSS
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by KSS »

XXXEsq wrote: Thu Mar 31, 2022 10:23 am As another option, I recently acquired one of Doc Sketchy's 5U Freak Shifts and its really superb! Doesn't have a built in LFO like the Bode, but does have sine and cosine mod ins, so any quadrature oscillator works great. :sb:
Doesn't the FreakShift derive sin and cos from any VCO input?
I thought eliminating the need to use a quadrature VCO was part of its creation as an upgrade from the original FS with the DDixon Rubicon core?
Agree it's a fantastic module at a price that's unbeatable. Dr S-n-E says it's using the same general circuit topology as the Bode.
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XXXEsq
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by XXXEsq »

KSS wrote: Thu Mar 31, 2022 10:51 am Doesn't the FreakShift derive sin and cos from any VCO input?
I thought eliminating the need to use a quadrature VCO was part of its creation as an upgrade from the original FS with the DDixon Rubicon core?
Agree it's a fantastic module at a price that's unbeatable. Dr S-n-E says it's using the same general circuit topology as the Bode.
It may, but I don't know (yet). It has a Mod in in addition to the sine and cosine ins. I only got the module 2 weeks ago and have spent maybe 20 minutes with it since due to work related time constraints. It did not come with any literature. I know Dr,S has some videos that explain it better, but I haven't yet had the time to review any of them. I've fed the mod in from LFO to audio freq ins and it sounds really cool. I have also used outputs from an oscillating Mankato and, using those at 180 degrees, it sounds really glorious. Can't beat the price!
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KSS
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by KSS »

As I understand it the toggle in mod position uses a plain VCO input for the internal SIN COS dome filter derivation and outputs them on those jacks. The Sin Cos position expects quadrature input and bypasses the first -of two!- internal dome filter.

It's a Freq shifter game changer.
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by cornutt »

SynthBaron wrote: Thu Mar 31, 2022 10:20 am Even most of the old Moog 1630 FS have a dead spot in the +-5Hz range because of not selected and aged components. The calibration work on the 1630 is very intensive and you have to adjust many, many trimmers in the right way and in the right flow. It took us about 3 years of research work to get it finally done."
Interesting. I have never heard this before. Thanks.
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sicknick
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by sicknick »

Yeah, big mistake buying a COTK frequency shifter when you could have gotten the superior Sketchy Labs offering. It is hands down the best Frequency Shifter I've ever encountered. I have the original with built in VCO.
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ericD13
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by ericD13 »

Ricochet wrote: Wed Mar 30, 2022 2:32 pm ...but by the way, to call someone "thief" who had delivered goods to you is more than adventurous..... :hmm:
He did NOT delivered goods !
The customer only received a pile of materials not the module he paid for.
When you sell something to a customer it's YOUR responsability to give him the right item.
Who would not call a thief a car seller who delivers a damaged car instead of a new one ?

There are numerous horror stories about COTK, the fact they can't even try to do better make them thieves or psychos.
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Lots of 5U modules to sell in europe :
https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewt ... p?t=219781
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by JohnLRice »

On a positive note . . . .

Because I've always wanted to try one of COTK's C 911P poly EG's, like for 10 years it has haunted me, I went ahead and ordered one!

Basic timeline:
March 28 - Ordered (exchanged several emails same day)
April 18 - Inquired on order status and Kazike replied the same day (was told they had a huge delay on a jack order from mouser)
May 3 - received email requesting address details confirmation
May 4 - received email with payment instructions and then an invoice after I paid
May 9 - started receiving messages from DHL that shipment was on its way
May 11 - received package

Packaging showed minimal signs of stress and module was well protected with bubble wrap, thick Styrofoam, air bags, and double boxed (with somewhat thin boxes).
COTJ_C911P_Delivered_Box1.jpg
COTJ_C911P_Delivered_BoxOpened.jpg
COTK_C911P_Delivered_Front.jpg
COTK_C911P_Delivered_Back.jpg
Quick wiggle to test it out, works great! :party:
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by boothnavy »

what are you using for VCAs here, JLR?
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by JohnLRice »

boothnavy wrote: Thu May 12, 2022 11:30 am what are you using for VCAs here, JLR?
Two Oakley/Krisp1 Dual VCAs :tu:
2726.f.jpg
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by levelhead3 »

JohnLRice wrote: Thu May 12, 2022 3:12 am On a positive note . . . .

Because I've always wanted to try one of COTK's C 911P poly EG's, like for 10 years it has haunted me, I went ahead and ordered one!

Basic timeline:
March 28 - Ordered (exchanged several emails same day)
April 18 - Inquired on order status and Kazike replied the same day (was told they had a huge delay on a jack order from mouser)
May 3 - received email requesting address details confirmation
May 4 - received email with payment instructions and then an invoice after I paid
May 9 - started receiving messages from DHL that shipment was on its way
May 11 - received package

Packaging showed minimal signs of stress and module was well protected with bubble wrap, thick Styrofoam, air bags, and double boxed (with somewhat thin boxes).
yay decent packing!!! :yay:
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KSS
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by KSS »

@JLR
Can you run a quick test on something about that EG for me?
Set T1 to max -10s- And feed an output to a VCO FM or V-oct.

Do you hear any stepping in the pitch?
Shouldn't need the full envelope to run for the test since its going to be max rate of change at the beginning for T1

Bonus test
Plug negative CV into the T1 control to slow things even further. Restart.
Any pitch stepping now?

I've always wondered where -if ever- stepping comes in with these digital EGs.
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by JohnLRice »

KSS wrote: Thu May 12, 2022 3:30 pm @JLR
Can you run a quick test on something about that EG for me?
Set T1 to max -10s- And feed an output to a VCO FM or V-oct.

Do you hear any stepping in the pitch?
Shouldn't need the full envelope to run for the test since its going to be max rate of change at the beginning for T1

Bonus test
Plug negative CV into the T1 control to slow things even further. Restart.
Any pitch stepping now?

I've always wondered where -if ever- stepping comes in with these digital EGs.
Zero stepping that I could tell! :tu: Bonus test didn't work though because the max time appears to be 10 minutes (edit: I meant to type SECONDS not minutes! :hihi: ), so with the control pot fully clockwise a positive input CV has no effect.
Last edited by JohnLRice on Fri May 13, 2022 4:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by ualslosar »

An improvement to this module, I think, would be to normalize the gate inputs. I believe you need an patch cord in each Gate Input for each envelope output.

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Larry
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by JohnLRice »

ualslosar wrote: Thu May 12, 2022 9:26 pm An improvement to this module, I think, would be to normalize the gate inputs. I believe you need an patch cord in each Gate Input for each envelope output.

Regards
Larry
I was pondering that and would be an easy enough mod to do, although I don't think I'd use it like that often?
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by defutura »

JohnLRice wrote: Thu May 12, 2022 4:20 pmBonus test didn't work though because the max time appears to be 10 minutes, so with the control pot fully clockwise a positive input CV has no effect.
Ten minutes? That's sixty times what it says on the tin...! :hmm:
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by KSS »

defutura wrote: Fri May 13, 2022 5:58 am
JohnLRice wrote: Thu May 12, 2022 4:20 pmBonus test didn't work though because the max time appears to be 10 minutes, so with the control pot fully clockwise a positive input CV has no effect.
Ten minutes? That's sixty times what it says on the tin...! :hmm:
Thank you JLR. Not sure I undestand the bonus test result? With neg CV to get 10 mins result the out to VCO stopped working? Not seeingh ow pos CV is involved in the test.

@defutura
Fairly normal to see increased times over panel labels with CV.
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by JohnLRice »

defutura wrote: Fri May 13, 2022 5:58 am
JohnLRice wrote: Thu May 12, 2022 4:20 pmBonus test didn't work though because the max time appears to be 10 minutes, so with the control pot fully clockwise a positive input CV has no effect.
Ten minutes? That's sixty times what it says on the tin...! :hmm:
:doh: I meant to type 10 SECONDS! :oops: :lol:
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by JohnLRice »

KSS wrote: Fri May 13, 2022 4:00 pm
defutura wrote: Fri May 13, 2022 5:58 am
JohnLRice wrote: Thu May 12, 2022 4:20 pmBonus test didn't work though because the max time appears to be 10 minutes, so with the control pot fully clockwise a positive input CV has no effect.
Ten minutes? That's sixty times what it says on the tin...! :hmm:
Thank you JLR. Not sure I undestand the bonus test result? With neg CV to get 10 mins result the out to VCO stopped working? Not seeingh ow pos CV is involved in the test.

@defutura
Fairly normal to see increased times over panel labels with CV.
:msnsmack: I meant to type 10 seconds, not minutes! :foul: :lol:

That said, the C 911P's max rise time is 10 seconds and that is obtained by either turning the T1 pot fully clockwise OR setting the T1 pot fully counterclockwise and applying enough positive voltage to the T1 CV input (I didn't take the time to get out a meter and measure how much voltage it took). You can do a combination of T1 pot setting and CV input but you wont get a rise time longer than 10 seconds.
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KSS
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Re: Club of the Knobs

Post by KSS »

That clears it up. :tu:
I should have realized the CV would be positive since its feeding a uP.

Choosing to have the limit always be 10s irrespective of CV input also prevents the type of stepping-aliasing I was asking about. <--Edit: When the uP ADC is used alone. Its bit depth will determine the granularity possible. An outboard or otherwise improved ADC could allow the ten minute timing. With proper attention to details.
Treat utility modules as stars instead of backup singers.
Treat power supplies like Rockstars instead of roadies!
Chase magic sound, not magic parts.
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