There are a number of standard approaches used throughout the collection of modules. As many modules are deliberately stripped back (to make the most effective use of space), these might not be completely obvious to start with, but once you’ve understood the approach in one module, it will typically be consistent across most if not all of them.
This section provides a breakdown of some of these common approaches, to help you as you start using the modules.
Clock In / Host Sync
In many of the time-based or beat-based modules, you will see reference to Host Sync and/or Clock In and a Speed/Divider knob. The approach here is simple but flexible:
- Host Sync is driven by the host or DAW speed as recognised within Voltage Modular. Effectively this bypasses the need to use the SYNC out on the main input/output panel and a Sync Divider. If nothing is connected, this currently seems to default 120 bpm.
- Clock In allows the timing to be calculated from a gate or trigger input. This takes a couple of gates/triggers to start working (for obvious reasons) and can adjust as the clock is changed – although big changes to the clock may take a few beats to settle down again.
- Time/Speed/Divider Knob allows multiplication and division of the speed or time from these inputs – from 1/16 to x16. When used on beat-based modules, the speed increases clockwise, when on time-based modules, the length of time increases clockwise.
BPM CV Inputs and Outputs
I have also used CV signals for BPM on a number of the modules, both as outputs and inputs. In all these cases, the mapping is 1 Volt = 100 bpm, with an expected range of 0V – 5V (>0bpm to 500bpm) although it does not limit it and only if over 1000bpm does it trap it. If at 0V or negative, it is ignored. This is often included as an option alongside Host and Clock In sync for beat-based modules.
A typical set of inputs for BPM-based timing is shown on the right, with a CV input (yellow), an External Clock (Blue) and a switch to select them or the internal Host DAW timings.
Speed/Divider Knob LED
On most beat-based modules, there is an LED with the Speed/Divider knob which shows the speed of the internal gate after the speed/divider factor is applied. These will typically (and in time, consistently) flash Blue for the calculated beats and will go Red if a 0bpm signal is received.
Voltage Modular Module Bypass
Most of the modules (except for metering modules) now support the new Module Bypass functionality. Depending on the functionality of the module, the behaviour does differ, but the general approach is that for audio paths (or audio capable paths) the Bypass operation simply a passthrough of the audio input to the audio output.
For CV Processing modules, a similar approach is taken, with the Bypass mode simply passing through the input CV to the output where this makes sense; for Envelopes, typically the Bypass simply passes through the gate signal to the envelope out; and for Gate and Trigger manipulation, the input is passed through to the output where this makes sense.
For some modules that generate signals and do not process signals, for example the delayed LFOs and other sources like the Clock Generator, the outputs are simple nulled.
For metering modules, and in a small number of other cases (e.g. the I/O Bus Plus modules), where the Bypass functionality was so limited as to not make sense, the option is not offered.
Voltage Modular I/O Panel Inputs
Following the addition of new features in Voltage Modular 2, it has been possible to have some inputs default to the DAW/external controller inputs provided from the I/O Panel.
Typically, these inputs will be shown on the module with the input name in a rounded box and arrow to the jack which it is connected to (see example from ENV-20 above). In some cases, additional switching to disable the internal connection is provided, as illustrated above.
There are a series of personalisation/customisation options available for modules across many of the modules:
1. Mid-Point for Log-Scale Time Controls
Modules which have time-based controls now have the ability to change the mid-point for the logarithmic behaviour of the knobs. This applies to e.g. Delay, Attack, Hold, Decay, Sustain and Release times on envelopes, Gate Times on the Gate Processor (Re-Gater) Module and the Delay and Fade times on the new CV Delay modules.
This setting is available through a “pop-up” configuration box and allows the mid point to be set to 500ms, 750ms, 1000ms, 1250ms, 3000ms (what is effectively a “legacy” mode) as well as to a standard linear mode. The legacy mode is automatically set (on existing modules) when loading presets from previous versions so that their behaviour is as expected.
2. Minimum Gate/Envelope Times
Minimum Attack Time, Decay/Release Time and Gate Time switches are also available on many modules such as Envelopes, Gate processing modules, Ratcheting, etc. and allows the default behaviour of allowing the times to be 0ms (a simple trigger for gates) or a minimum of 2ms, even if the control plus a CV make it less. This ensures that the gate will fully open the envelope on Cherry Audio’s standard Envelope Module which has a 2ms minimum Attack time, and will remove the possible clicks from envelopes when used at 0ms.
Accessing the Settings
Where a setting is not directly available on the module, the settings will be available through a “pop-up” configuration box accessible by pressing the cogwheel settings/config button to open the control. Full details of the settings and customisation options are available on the Customisation Options help page.
Global UI Customisation
There are a series of customisation options available for all modules related to the display of Release Notes and of the custom popup “tooltip” style help in some modules. These settings are accessible by right clicking on the logo . Full details of the options are available on the Customisation Options help page.