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Update to MF-101 lowpass filter

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Re: Update to MF-101 lowpass filter

Postby Quatschmacher » Sat Mar 03, 2018 7:08 pm

I’ve been in touch with Noam at Sonicsmith and he thought the behaviour I was experiencing wasn’t right and so I’ve sent him a couple of videos highlighting the problems.

I’m just using it with bass guitar (though I did try my Rhodes through it). I’m finding I need to have the HPF on 16Hz and the LPF at about 140Hz to get it to track all the way down. With the envelope decoupled from the VCA I get a hideous amount of noise. Using a gate pedal has helped but it still seems like all is not well. (Their new version has a built-in gate with adjustable threshold.) I often get situations where the Squaver makes noise all by itself, even when the bass is muted. I’m also hearing a lot of bleed from the oscillator into the bypass signal, which is unacceptable.

It’s a shame as I’ve managed to get some pretty cool sounds out of this thing. I still think they should add ADSR to it though as I’m finding the bass’s envelope isn’t snappy enough.
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Re: Update to MF-101 lowpass filter

Postby stiiiiiiive » Sun Mar 04, 2018 5:13 am

Quatschmacher wrote:With the envelope decoupled from the VCA I get a hideous amount of noise.

Even with IP set to the minimum?

Quatschmacher wrote:(Their new version has a built-in gate with adjustable threshold.)

Are you talking abou the "+" versions? If so, do you happen to know other evolutions over the current generation?

Quatschmacher wrote:I still think they should add ADSR to it though as I’m finding the bass’s envelope isn’t snappy enough.

It would much more time contrained as attack, decay a,d release times would be fix. I've tried a couple of triggered envelope devices and I never found them more interesting that envelope follower devices. They sound much more natural and subtle to me. I think the key is to manage the input signal with the preamp and/or noise gate (if any).
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Re: Update to MF-101 lowpass filter

Postby Quatschmacher » Sun Mar 04, 2018 7:45 am

Quatschmacher wrote:With the envelope decoupled from the VCA I get a hideous amount of noise.

Even with IP set to the minimum?

I’ll have to try again and see. I’m finding that the sound is much more interesting with the gain up; overdriving the filter a bit gives a pleasing sound.

Quatschmacher wrote:(Their new version has a built-in gate with adjustable threshold.)

Are you talking abou the "+" versions? If so, do you happen to know other evolutions over the current generation?

Yes. The input LPF knob will be replaced by a gate threshold. (The tracking filter will still be there, just won’t be manual control over it.) Other than that, there’ll be minor cosmetic changes. They’ve switched companies for the silk screening so that should be better (the paint on mine is faded in places).

Quatschmacher wrote:I still think they should add ADSR to it though as I’m finding the bass’s envelope isn’t snappy enough.

It would much more time contrained as attack, decay a,d release times would be fix. I've tried a couple of triggered envelope devices and I never found them more interesting that envelope follower devices. They sound much more natural and subtle to me. I think the key is to manage the input signal with the preamp and/or noise gate (if any).

Even dedicated control over the attack and release would be welcome. My Source Audio Manta and 3Leaf Wonderlove do this and it makes it easier to dial in the shape. (I’m still gutted the MF-101 doesn’t do this).
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Re: Update to MF-101 lowpass filter

Postby stiiiiiiive » Sun Mar 04, 2018 11:37 am

Thanks for that information, mate : )
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Re: Update to MF-101 lowpass filter

Postby Quatschmacher » Sun Mar 04, 2018 1:30 pm

stiiiiiiive wrote:Thanks for that information, mate : )


You’re welcome. In answer to your other question, yes, I still get the noise with the input gain on minimum. Part of the problem seems to be that, with bass guitar, I need to have the HPF set to 16Hz, which lets more low end rumble into the signal path. Still, it shouldn’t make these noises when the bass is off though.
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Re: Update to MF-101 lowpass filter

Postby stiiiiiiive » Mon Mar 05, 2018 6:29 am

I know SonicSmith proposes a mod to change the gate threshold. If they haven’t offered you to send back your unit, you may want to ask…
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Re: Update to MF-101 lowpass filter

Postby Quatschmacher » Mon Mar 12, 2018 12:26 pm

Noam offered to modify the gate threshold to eliminate the problem. However, I decided on a refund after all (which I got today promptly upon the return of the unit) as there were other things which weren’t quite doing it for me. These are not faults of the unit, just that, because I wanted to use this on a bass, the inherent latency (in any pitch conversion system) when tracking low frequencies made the feel not right for me.

I can not fault the customer service and dedication to improvement of their products and to customer satisfaction. It’s a great company with two lovely, talented, dedicated and friendly guys at the helm and I wish them every success with their revolutionary products. I’m keen to see what improvements they make in future.
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