New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Everything Phatty.
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xombiexplox
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New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by xombiexplox » Sun Feb 19, 2012 9:07 pm

After what felt like an eternity waiting for it, and having UPS tracking go down the day it was supposed to be delivered...

...I have to say that this thing sounds fantastic!! I am a little daunted by all the controls though :( but I am reading through the manual like a madwoman!

Does anyone know any beginners guides to how all these knobs work? I am going over the layout of everything again and again, but I know a simpler explanation would help! I'm currently reading through all of the results that came back from a forum search for "beginner"
:3
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banyek
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by banyek » Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:01 am

:)
you can find anything in the manual - but what (i think) you can't is that you should tweak everything gently - in the analog world, even a small amount of tweak can result in a completely different timbre/sound/etc. the rest is patience and exploration i'd say.
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namahshaman
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by namahshaman » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:36 am

Congratulations on your purchase, and welcome to the Moog family.

With my SP I found it very educational to start with a simple wave form like a triangle (there should be a few presets in the upper 90s called simple triangle, simple square, etc.) Then, slowly tweak each parameter until you learn what it does. I found that this can be more educational that starting with a complex preset, since some of those can make it trickier to understand what exactly is going on when you turn the knobs. Starting from scratch with one oscillator and then slowly building from there will teach you a lot about what tweaks what. Of course, acquiring a basic understanding of synthesis will help infinitely: what are VCOs, LFOs, envelopes, ADSR, etc. This information exists all over the internet. Lots of good stuff here: http://www.indiana.edu/~emusic/analoglinks.htm

Good luck, and enjoy your toy.

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Portamental
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by Portamental » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:55 am

Welcome to the group. Nice to have a woman join in. There are far too few women playing the Moog, it seems to me.

There is a sort-of tutorial about synthesis in every Moog's user manual, I don't know exactly what they say and how, I have not been reading them for ages. If you can, search the web for user manuals of vintage Moogs, such as the Prodigy and the MG-1. You'll find plenty of things in there. The difference is that newer Moogs rely a lot on presets, so tutorial talk less about settings and approach synthesis on a more global basis, while earlier Moogs did not have presets, so the learning is presented in a step by step approach and always include some presets examples showing all the knobs or slider positions, and what kind of sound they are trying to "emulate".

The are three factors that stand out when trying to get that Moog sound. Pay attention to those and you'll be on your way to great pleasure.

1- The settings and relationship between the Cut-off frequency and Resonance. The Filter IS the Moog, so to speak. When you turn down the Cut-off frequency and put a bit (or a lot) of resonance, things start to happen.

2- Envelopes, often referred to as EGR (envelope generator). There are two of those, one for the Filter (VCF) and one for the level of sound (VCA). Each of them has 4 parameters : Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release. While is it the filter that produces the Moog sound, the filter alone would not do all that much. It is the variation in time of the VCF EGR and VCA EGR that enables the filter to produce so many sounds and textures. Mastering the envelopes is very important. For example : lead presets have a judicious amount of attack and decay, pads have long attack, decay and release (for a fading sound when you release the note), drum kicks and thumping bass presets have rather short attack and decay and no sustain (that in turns voids the release) and often negative EGR's.

3- Modulation. A little bit more complex, here. Modulation is usually achieved with two things : a modulation source (the most common being the LFO : low frequency oscillator) and a modulation amount. The modulation amount is controlled by a "controller", and the main modulation controller (besides the amount knob) is the Mod Wheel. Since you have a Slim Phatty, you don't have a modulation wheel, but your midi controller should have one, it will send modulation signals through midi. Modulation allows you to create some tremolo or vibrato effects when applied to pitch, and a whole lot of textures when applied to the filter.

That's it, being put in so few words, although I did not mention waveforms, also responsible for different kind of sounds.

Keep you Slim Phatty close at hand, not far way in a rack and out of reach. You will want to turn lots of knobs during playing a monosynth to achieve more expression. As it happens, you usually have a free hand to do that, your instrument being able to play only one note at a time.

Have fun, girl.

Edit : too many typos and bits added for envelopes.
Last edited by Portamental on Tue Feb 21, 2012 4:38 am, edited 1 time in total.

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acatcalledanarchy
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by acatcalledanarchy » Mon Feb 20, 2012 11:12 am

Welcome Xombiexplox,

The following videos may help:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dxx_YbHyBig

Peace, love and flowers...
A Cat Called Anarchy

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Voltor07
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by Voltor07 » Mon Feb 20, 2012 1:23 pm

Wow, a GIRL! :shock: Ok, now that that's out of my system, welcome! The SP, like my LP, is capable of some really amazing sounds. Familiarize yourself with the various waveforms from the two oscillators, and experiment with the envelopes. Of course, tweak the filter. Umm...yeah! And most importantly, have fun and make some noise! :mrgreen:
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thealien666
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by thealien666 » Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:59 pm

Yes, Welcome to one of the finest, and helpful, forum around !

Sorry I can't be of more help to you... :lol:

No, seriously, may I suggest this short article that explains the very basics of subtractive synthesis ?

http://www.kvraudio.com/wiki/?id=The+Ba ... +Synthesis

It's not exactly explained using a Slim Phatty, but you'll probably understand everything anyway. Just skip right to the main article: "The very basics". :)

Al.
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David Smyth
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by David Smyth » Mon Feb 20, 2012 5:12 pm

Along the top of the Slim Phatty you will see the sections: Modulation, Oscillators, Filter & Envelope Generators. These are different parts of the system which work together to produce the end sound - I touch on each section below:

The "Oscillators" are the sound sources you start with, and there are two oscillators on the Slim Phatty - which you can mix together at different volume levels, octaves and wave types for different types of sounds.

This is then sent through a filter which in this case is a low pass filter. This means when you turn the "Cutoff Frequency" knob to the left, only low frequencies will pass through (all the higher frequencies will be filtered out) resulting in some more bassy sounds. Turning the "Cutoff Frquency" knob to the right will allow more and more high frequencies through (aswell as the low frequencies).

When you press a keyboard key, the sound occurs. This is because the key press triggers the envelopes (one for volume, and one for the filter's cutoff frequency). The best way to imagine an envelope is as a graph - best shown under the Envelope Generator section in the manual. You can use the ADSR (Attack, Decay, Sustain & Release) envelope controls to shape how the volume or cutoff frequency behaves when you press a note (e.g. a longer volume attack means the sound will fade in slowly).

Modulation is using a slow cyclic wave to automatically control any parameter for you. Being a wave, it will contantly repeat. It is linked to the "mod wheel" on your keyboard (next to the pitch wheel) and when this is turned up (often during playing), it will be active. You can choose a source wave and a destination parameter to be controlled (e.g. you can choose a Triangle wave to effect the "Filter" and the wave will sweep the filter's cutoff frequency back and forwards, or a Triangle wave to effect "Pitch" for a more traditional vibrato effect). The Amount control allows you determine how deep the effect the wave has on the parameter you've chosen (when the mod wheel is fully engaged), and the rate control determines the speed of the wave (try speeding it up slowly to maximum for some rich timbres called "FM" - Frequency Modulation).

This turned out being pretty long, but hopefully it helps in some way. I haven't included everything, but I think I've explained the general idea of what each section does. Experiment with the different controls and have some fun with the awesome sounds you can create!

Regards,
David Smyth
NZ
Minimoog Voyager XL, Little Phatty Stage II + CV Output Mod, 2x Slim Phatty, Minitaur, MP-201, EP-2, 2x CP-251, MF-102, MF-104M, MF-107

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_DemonDan_
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by _DemonDan_ » Mon Feb 20, 2012 5:23 pm

xombiexplox wrote:Does anyone know any beginners guides to how all these knobs work?
I am going over the layout of everything again and again, but I know a
simpler explanation would help!
Hi Xombiexplox,

Welcome!

Here is a book that I was hired to proofread before it was published.
As such I can say that I believe everything in this book. It is the only
book I require my students to buy for my Music Synthesis courses:

http://www.amazon.com/Power-Tools-Synth ... B001RF3U0E

It can be found for under $15 and it comes with an audio CD
featuring sound examples throughout the book.

Hope this helps:-)
_ :twisted: _DemonDan_ :twisted: _

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Omaroo
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by Omaroo » Mon Feb 20, 2012 7:44 pm

_DemonDan_ wrote: Here is a book that I was hired to proofread before it was published.
As such I can say that I believe everything in this book. It is the only
book I require my students to buy for my Music Synthesis courses:

http://www.amazon.com/Power-Tools-Synth ... B001RF3U0E

It can be found for under $15 and it comes with an audio CD
featuring sound examples throughout the book.

Hope this helps:-)
Hi Dan - would you do Australians a favour and ask the publisher to make these available in Kindle form to non-Americans?

Amazon:
This title is not available for customers from: Australia(change region)
Why? Arrghh! THis is SO annoying in this day and age.
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gruvsyco
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by gruvsyco » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:37 pm

Was poking around here today and found this... look no further than the Moog site itself. Looks like it's a work in progress 3/5

EricK
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by EricK » Tue Feb 21, 2012 2:12 am

Welcome to the forum.

This video is a Voyager instructional video, it goes through the Oscillators, Filters, Envelopes, and modulation.. The Phatty has the same basic architecture as the Voyager (minus some more complicated modulation), just the Voyager has a knob-per-function interface. See what the narrator is doing and do the same action on your synth and you should be able to figure out just how easy the Little Phatty is to operate.

Analog Synthesis has a high learning curve, but once you tackle the very basics, you are gravy.

You have a PM.

Eric
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xombiexplox
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by xombiexplox » Tue Feb 21, 2012 3:37 am

YOU GUYS.

Thank you so much!! All of this is going to be extremely helpful! I've been trying to find a new hobby since I moved on my own and I like the SP so much I am in the market for a Microkorg to go with it, and possibly a Little Phatty if I'm feelin' saucy!

This is my first time touching a synth, thank you all SO much for the help :) I wish there were a way I could return the favor!!!
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xombiexplox
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Re: New girl with a Slim Phatty!

Post by xombiexplox » Tue Feb 21, 2012 4:50 am

gruvsyco wrote:Was poking around here today and found this... look no further than the Moog site itself. Looks like it's a work in progress 3/5
Yeah! I've been watching those, I added Moog on Facebook and was very pleasantly surprised to see these videos popping up as I was first getting into learning about this stuff!
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