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Replace a Little Phatty with a Sub 37?

Posted: Sun Sep 13, 2015 7:54 pm
by fromheretothere
Hi everyone,

I'm new to the forum, so apologies if there are more threads about this topic. I searched and didn't find the answer I was looking for. Basically I've had a Little Phatty for almost 3 years. I really love the tones, but often I feel too limited with the sounds I can shape given that it lacks a few things like a second LFO, a sub oscillator, a noise generator and VCA level as a destination. I've been thinking about getting a Voyager for a while, but it's very pricey. Ever since the Sub 37 came out, I've been wondering if I should sell my Little Phatty and get a Sub 37 since it's more affordable. I've played it twice at the store and my reaction was mostly positive, except that the tones feel a little different - maybe too modern. Granted, I didn't spend that much time with it and the amp it was connected to can make a big difference.

The LP is my first Moog synth, so I'm also a bit attached to it. Thinking about replacing it makes me debate my decision quite a lot, thinking that with time I'll end up missing it. That said, has anyone here replaced their LP with a Sub 37? If so, what's your opinion. I know this question is very subjective, but in general can you share pros and cons? Things perhaps you miss about the Little Phatty? From what I've read - and correct me if I'm wrong - the raw waveforms of the LP sounds a bit closer to the Voyager than the Sub 37.

Cheers!

Re: Replace a Little Phatty with a Sub 37?

Posted: Mon Sep 14, 2015 8:00 am
by stiiiiiiive
Hi Fromheretothere, welcome to the forum!

I’ve had a LP for 4 years now. When the Sub 37 was announced, I saw that picture of the panel and was very, very excited: 2 mod busses, 2 LFOs, aftertouch, VCA as destination, sequencer, loopable envelopes… well, just like you said, so many possibilities the LP does not offer.
I’m still with my LP, though, and here is why.

My fellow guitarist bought a Sub Phatty –same engine as the Sub37- and I have to say I don’t like the sound as much as the LP’s. I’m used to put it like this: there is something in the LP’s sound, in particular in the overload circuit, that I cannot achieve with the SubPhatty, even using the multidrive. Something I tend to qualify of beefier, more on the rock’n’roll side than on the dubstep side. The fact the Sub’s oscillators are more straight must be a part of the cause, and I’ve read several times that the filter was not reacting exactly the same too.

Another point you may want to consider is the way you’re interacting with the instrument. The LP has this ability to always show you what’s going on soundwise, eventhough it only shows 4 parameters at a time (plus octaves and modulation source, destination and LFO rate). When I first played the Sub, I obviously fell into that situation where you hear some triangle LFO but the knob says “square LFO” … until you touch it. I a bit picky about that. I’ve grown up on LED collars knobs (Clavia G2 and Little Phatty) and must say the classic way is sometimes harder to get used to. BTW, my other synths have no collar LEDs but they don’t have patch memory neither.

So here am I, all in all. Not ready to sacrify sound for functionalities. But struggling not to :)

Re: Replace a Little Phatty with a Sub 37?

Posted: Mon Sep 14, 2015 11:25 pm
by fromheretothere
Hi stiiiiiiive,

Thanks for your reply! You touched on something very important that I ignored while testing the Sub 37 - "The LP has this ability to always show you what’s going on soundwise". You're right. It's good for me to know exactly where I am. I'm not a pro. Seeing exactly where each parameter is when switching presets helps me understand synthesis better.

Cheers!

Re: Replace a Little Phatty with a Sub 37?

Posted: Tue Sep 15, 2015 8:16 am
by MoogProg
stiiiiiiive wrote:... Sub Phatty –same engine as the Sub37- and I have to say I don’t like the sound as much as the LP’s. I’m used to put it like this: there is something in the LP’s sound, in particular in the overload circuit, that I cannot achieve with the SubPhatty, even using the multidrive. Something I tend to qualify of beefier, more on the rock’n’roll side than on the dubstep side.


I picked up a Slim Phatty earlier this year to compliment the Sub37. I was very pleasantly surprised at how good the Slim Phatty sounds! I find my self playing it more often than the Sub37. AS stiiiiiiives says, there is something about the Overdrive (and how the filter overdrives) that is very nice sounding.

That said, one day I decided to use every-trick-in the-book to make the Sub sound like the Slim, and with certainty it can be done! Secret was to mix the OSCs loud enough to overdrive the filter, to use the Multidrive in moderation, and also to apply Feedback in moderation. Lastly, I used MOD2 on a slow LFO to gently sweep the Beat Frequency, creating the impression of drifting OSCs. (Note: I am not a fan of the Variance parameter).

Re: Replace a Little Phatty with a Sub 37?

Posted: Tue Sep 15, 2015 4:32 pm
by stiiiiiiive
MoogProg wrote:
stiiiiiiive wrote:That said, one day I decided to use every-trick-in the-book to make the Sub sound like the Slim, and with certainty it can be done! Secret was to mix the OSCs loud enough to overdrive the filter, to use the Multidrive in moderation, and also to apply Feedback in moderation. Lastly, I used MOD2 on a slow LFO to gently sweep the Beat Frequency, creating the impression of drifting OSCs. (Note: I am not a fan of the Variance parameter).


That's good news (except for my banker haha)! Not sure I want to "struggle" to achieve that character, but good news anywa, thanks!

Re: Replace a Little Phatty with a Sub 37?

Posted: Wed Sep 16, 2015 2:32 pm
by Iliek
The Sub 37 is a more powerful and versatile beast than the LP. It can create the same sounds as an LP as well as many that are impossible on that instrument. If it doesn't sound as overdriven as you'd like even with multidrive and external feedback, you might have the oscillators turned down in the mixer.

Re: Replace a Little Phatty with a Sub 37?

Posted: Thu Sep 17, 2015 5:24 pm
by stiiiiiiive
That's not that it's not as overdriven as the LP. It's that it is overdriven in another way.

A worse way in my opinion. Tastes...

Re: Replace a Little Phatty with a Sub 37?

Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2015 9:13 am
by grenert
If you're reluctant to part with your LP, a CP-251 will give you some of what you're looking for. It would require you to do patching, however, which may not be your cup of tea.

Re: Replace a Little Phatty with a Sub 37?

Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2015 10:10 pm
by Rbwduece
I will say that these synthesizers are different beasts altogether! I love the Sub 37's warmth and versatility, but the LP has a meaner sound! However, if I had to choose between owning one or the other, I'd go with the Sub 37 due to the extensive modulation routing capabilities and smooth warm tone. Oh, and of course that awesome sequencer!

Re: Replace a Little Phatty with a Sub 37?

Posted: Sat Sep 19, 2015 6:45 pm
by psynthetic
Sub 37 will serve you will if you're looking for very modern sounds that require fairly precise modulation and settings.

EG: Certain bass sounds you just can't get with free running analogue oscillators, you need them to reset at every note on, the Sub 37 does this.

Just a side note.. I really don't use the sub osc on the S37 very much at all.. not needed in bass sounds, Moogs have plenty going on down there already.
Can be useful for adding some weight to lead tones... but once that's in a mix with other instruments I usually roll off the bottom end anyway.. *shrug*