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Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

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Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby jon_kull » Sun Mar 31, 2013 12:04 pm

Most of the demos make it sound harsh and buzzy. Does it have a smoother, softer (Voyager-ish) side?
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby dswo » Sun Mar 31, 2013 12:43 pm

Owner of serial number 22 answers this question sideways: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=19224#p115446.
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby jon_kull » Sun Mar 31, 2013 1:17 pm

Hmmm...Maybe I'll just keep saving for another Voyager rather than trying to fit the SP into a box it wasn't intended to fit into.
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby mico » Sun Mar 31, 2013 2:24 pm

jon_kull wrote:Most of the demos make it sound harsh and buzzy. Does it have a smoother, softer (Voyager-ish) side?

It won't sound Voyager buttery smooth, but that is because they are two entirely different sound engines. Can it get Voyager-esque? Fairly close, I must say. Just be sure that you are working with the filter set to 4-pole/24dB per octave. In my experience, this has resulted in tones that are more subdued and mellow.

If you are truly interested in the Sub Phatty, take a look at the back of the manual and check out the hidden parameters section - accessible when in Shift mode. It is quite engaging how much is there already that I had not yet seen available in any other Moog offering. Bear in mind, I've only owned the Taurus and Taurus 3 and not the Minitaur. So some of this may indeed be available in that little box as well.

You're likely hearing a lot of "harsh and buzzy" demos because that is either a) what the synthesist likes to craft and/or b) they are fixated on the new Multridrive parameter in the filter section.

I've also owned a Voyager SS and LP SE II (w/CV Out mod). Can't say I miss the sound engine of either. That is my personal mileage however; yours may vary.
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby ZYKLIFF » Mon Apr 01, 2013 11:44 am

jon_kull wrote:Most of the demos make it sound harsh and buzzy. Does it have a smoother, softer (Voyager-ish) side?


Oh do You own one yet? I love the sound of the filter dialed back a bit, and the OSC's at just under 6. Marc Doty's Sub demos show this off... Last night I had some delay on it, and I was in ABBA territory for sure :D ... Very sweet and lush. I think Sub actually sounds less pointed than the Slim/Little Phatties in this regard. MiniMoogy with a screaming, evil side. :twisted:
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby jon_kull » Mon Apr 01, 2013 8:49 pm

No, I don't own one. That's why I'm asking. I had to sell my Voyager a few months ago out of financial necessity. I'd like to pick up another Moog. I actually like the harsher, overdriven tone of the SP but before I commit to the purchase I want to know if it can do a wider range of sounds or if it's more geared to the aggressive stuff. The new VCOs and overdrive circuit are (understandibly) getting a lot of 'press'. I haven't heard anything mello yet and figured I'd ask.
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby kingfriday » Fri Apr 12, 2013 6:57 pm

I just got my SubP yesterday and can speak a little bit to this. Yes, Sub can absolutely do the "softer side" of moog tones, though it won't sound exactly like a Voyager or an LP. The Sub has several places in the signal path where you can introduce overdrive, so it's very easy to get massive tones out it. If you are mindful of this architecture, though, it is fully capable of buttery smooth leads and other vintage sounds.

- The mixer section is capable of making those waves quite aggressive, but it doesn't have to! Keep those osc levels low.
- Keep the multidrive down all the way. I know its tempting to use it, but if you want super smooth, lay off that ish!
- As has been mentioned before make sure the filter is in 24db/4 pole mode.

The trick is really to keep your levels low at the various points where the Sub can introduce grit. I've never come across a synth that is so responsive to levels and, personally, I love it. Brining in all this distortion makes it loud, so you're going to need to boost your final volume pretty significantly when you're goign for smooth and silky. I still haven't quite figured out a perfect system, but basically if you make your smooth tones with the volume up, you can back it down for your louder, more aggressive sounds.

Again, this is not to say you will be able to duplicate the sounds of other moog synths, but you should be able to get into roughtly the same sonic territory.
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby dswo » Fri Apr 12, 2013 11:12 pm

kingfriday wrote:Keep those osc levels low.


I just got mine yesterday. How low is low for you?
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby ZYKLIFF » Sat Apr 13, 2013 1:00 am

OSC's 1&2 at 2 yields the softest tones. As long as those OSC's are under 6, there should be no overdriving. Sub Osc off. Play with Res, EG, KB and Filter per preference.
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby kingfriday » Sat Apr 13, 2013 11:12 am

Agreed. If I'm running a single osc patch, anything below 6 is super clean sounding. If it's 2 osc patch, maybe even less per osc, say 2 or 3. No sub osc, of course.

On another note, the sub osc is pretty cool on its own. It's a very symmetrical (proper!) square wave that I feel is almost impossible to get from the variable wave oscs.
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby dswo » Sat Apr 13, 2013 11:39 am

kingfriday wrote:On another note, the sub osc is pretty cool on its own. It's a very symmetrical (proper!) square wave that I feel is almost impossible to get from the variable wave oscs.


Yes, before anyone jumps in here and says, "You're missing the whole point of this new synthesizer": we're not trying to un-Sub the Sub Phatty, just maximize its tonal range.
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby dswo » Sun Apr 21, 2013 3:11 pm

<Deleted by author until he comes up with a worthier example.>
Last edited by dswo on Sat May 04, 2013 5:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby monokit » Mon Apr 22, 2013 3:03 pm

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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby dswo » Mon Apr 22, 2013 10:14 pm

I feel slightly ecstatic. Today was a long day at work and I didn't think I had the energy for playing. But I went and turned on my little machines and started riffing with one of my favorite Tetra patches, then moved over to the Sub Phatty and played the same riff with the patch I made yesterday afternoon. Even with the Sub Phatty's little keyboard, I could feel it singing under my fingers. That went on for about forty minutes, and then...I did something I haven't done since the Sub Phatty first arrived and I was testing all of the knobs. I turned up the OSC mixer knobs all the way to 12 and opened the multidrive a few inches! I know, I know: that's what the Sub Phatty is all about. But we had been going for soft, right? I dialed in a couple of squares, with a little wave modulation for both, and tuned the second oscillator up an octave and a fifth. Shifted the keyboard down to octave light 2 (as I'm calling it here) and...my dear friends, the saturated filter plus a little multidrive is one of the warmest sounds I have ever experienced. Two seconds into the new patch I found a couple of new phrases and embroidered them joyfully for the next twenty minutes.

If anyone is still worrying, "Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?" the answer is an emphatic Yes and Amen. It can be aggressive, if that's what you want, but it's just as ready to purr and sing. For the upper registers, try turning down the OSC volume as suggested above. But for lower notes, saturate that filter and give it some MD. The result, to borrow a phrase from one of my students, is ear chocolate.
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Re: Does the Sub Phatty have a softer side?

Postby dswo » Sat May 25, 2013 12:06 pm

If the oscillators seem too bright, explore the range between triangle and saw.
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