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Modular Synthesizers

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Cascading Analog Waveform Sculpting Oscillator
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True analog innovation, the Lifeforms Primary Oscillator was designed to stretch the boundaries of pure sonic sculpting. The Primary Oscillator uses unique cascading waveform processing to create increasingly complex, fully modulatable waveforms. Through the use of multiple interwoven waveshapers, a simple waveform can quickly mutate into something deeply dynamic and harmonically rich.

Custom waveshapers include a harmonic sine wave; a sine processed to add just enough harmonics to give a resonant filter something to dig into. Next, the included blade wave processor is an evolution of our custom modulation circuit, creating modulatable ramp and pulse waves. The fragments generator is an analog downsampler capable of crushing waveforms to dust without ever sounding thin or cold.  Also included, the timbre wave folder enables deep spectral change by repeatedly folding the waveform in on itself until the original waveform is unrecognizable.

The Primary Oscillator is not meant to be a clean oscillator that produces perfect waveforms. Controlled signal interactions and the unique set of cascading waveshapers at the heart of the Primary Oscillator allow for a uniquely musical approach to experimenting with a wide array of interesting sounds. Instead of relying only on a standard set of simple wave shapes, the Primary Oscillator builds on the basics to offer a powerful palate of infinitely variable waveforms. No other analog oscillator offers such a creative and deep set of audio processing tools.

Primary Oscillator Controls

Based around the custom dual VCA oscillator designed for the Microvolt 3900, the Primary Oscillator takes advantage of calibrated temperature stabilization paired with hard sync and both linear and exponential frequency modulation. The result is a stable saw core oscillator fine tuned for deep sonic exploration. 

Frequency Slider - Frequency control sweeps from LFO through the full audio range.

Fine Tune Slider - Limited range frequency control.

FM | CV Button - Switch the destination of the FM input jack between linear FM (on) and exponential CV (off) modulation.

Harmonic Sine Button - Switch between sine wave (off) and harmonic sine wave (on). Harmonic sine wave adds a minimal number of harmonics to a sine allowing for a new set of timbres to emerge.

FM | CV Amount Trimmer - FM input attenuator control.

Pitch Input Jack - 1 volt per octave pitch tracking CV input.

FM Input Jack - Linear FM or exponential CV input jack.

Sync Input Jack - Hard sync oscillator reset input jack.

Sine Wave Output Jack - Sine wave or harmonic sine wave output jack.

Saw Wave Output Jack - Saw wave output jack.

The blade wave is a modulatable ramp wave that produces an evolving waveform capable of stable pitch tracking. The shape of the blade wave can be controlled using the blade | pulse CV input and attenuator creating a sweeping or chorus effect on the wave. The blade | pulse shape slider manually sweeps the blade wave and pulse width.

Blade Core Wave Source Button - Select the waveform used as the core wave for the blade wave. Triangle (on) or sine (off). If sine is selected, the harmonic sine button affects the blade wave shape.

Blade|Pulse Width Shape Slider - Manual Blade wave shape and Pulse width control. This slider acts as an offset when modulation is used.

Blade|Pulse CV Amount Trimmer - Blade wave shape and Pulse width CV input attenuator.

Blade|Pulse CV Input Jack - Blade wave shape and pulse width CV input jack.

Blade Wave Output Jack - Blade wave output jack.

Pulse Wave Output Jack - Pulse wave output jack.

An analog downsampler with an effect similar to a bit crusher however, unlike a digital bit crusher, the analog fragments circuit sounds full and warm. Taking advantage of unlimited bit and sample rate resolutions, the fragments section avoids lo-fi digital results by smoothly downsampling at infinite resolution. The density slider sets the periodic voltage sample timing, breaking down a sine or triangle wave into ever-larger static chunks. Perfect for subtle analog aliasing effects or total waveform destruction.

Fragments Wave Source Button - Select the waveform used as the core wave for the fragments wave. Triangle (on) or sine (off). If sine is selected, the harmonic sine button affects the fragments wave shape.

Fragments Density Slider - Manual fragments density control. This slider acts as an offset when modulation is used.

Fragments CV Amount Trimmer - Fragments wave periodic voltage sample timing CV input attenuator.

Fragments CV Input Jack - Fragments wave periodic voltage sample timing CV input jack.

Fragments Wave Output Jack - Fragments wave output jack.

The timbre section of the Primary Oscillator features a highly tuned, voltage controlled wavefolder used to add odd harmonics to either the sine wave or blade wave. The timbre depth and timbre CV controls set the density and amplitude of the folds. When processing a sine wave, the wavefolder creates a spectral change from zero harmonics to square, with an infinite harmonic series. The effect on the blade wave is complex and uniquely rich.

Timbre Wave Source Button - Select the waveform used as the core wave for the timbre wave. Blade (on) or sine (off). If blade is selected, all of the modulation and modifications made to the blade wave will cascade into the wavefolder. If sine is selected, the harmonic sine button affects the fragments wave core.

Timbre Depth Slider - Manual wave folder control. This slider acts as an offset when modulation is used.

Timbre CV Amount Trimmer - Wavefolder depth CV input attenuator.

Timbre CV Input Jack - Wavefolder depth CV input jack.

Timbre Wave Output Jack - Wavefolder output jack.

Technical Specifications

Panel size: 10hp
Depth: 25mm
Power Usage: +12v 112mA, -12v 104mA.  Does not require +5v. Reversed power polarity protection.

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