[sdiy] Re: [AH] Vacuum Tube Motherboard
batzman at all-electric.com
Thu Jun 6 17:04:42 CEST 2002
And I see we're x-posted to AH. Morning AH people.
At 12:56 AM 6/5/02 -0700, metasonix at earthlink.net wrote:
> >Tube output from your PC! Yes, it's true! Well, maybe. Several comments on
> >Slashdot suggest it's a hoax. Interesting if it's for real... uses a single
> >dual-triode tube...http://www.hardocp.com/article.html?art=MzAy
>You gentlemen would be very surprised to learn
>how big tube audio is in Asia. AOpen is in Taiwan.
This looks interesting but is would seem to me to be more of a novelty to
me. Even if the sound is kick ass. Which I'm sure it would be. The simple
reason is this. "What do you do when you upgrade to an Itanium or
something?" There's a good chance you'll lose your valves in the process. A
far better solution seems to me, would be to have an outboard valve pre-amp
array. Then when your mo-bo becomes redundant, your valve sound remains.
And if you manage many audio capable machines, as is increasingly necessary
these days, then it doesn't make terribly good economic sense. Or at least
have some kind of sound card that has the valves on it (Somehow?) so that
you can change the Mo-bo underneath it.
But speaking of valves. I just took delivery of one of Eric's Metasonix
TM-1 modules. Honestly you gotta hear this thing. It processes noises like
nothing I've heard before. I wanted something that was unique for doing
folly sound effects in my animations and this is just the ticket. And more.
You couldn't emulate the things this processor does. It made me think
seriously about a wall full of modules just so I can have this as the
It's a bit hard to tame at first, it can get way out of control but that's
it's charm so to speak. The fact that it can warp a sound way out of
proportion is exactly what I was after. It's basically a ring mod on the
end of a unique device of Eric's own creation that pulses in harmony with
the incoming signal. This can range from hardly noticable to seriously
bent. All the way out to total runaway. And if you crank the preamp, you
get tube distortion on top.
I kinda expected it to be guitar oriented but your average guitarist
wouldn't get it. This is module material. It would be a waste on a guitar.
At first I was putting it on the end of things. Then I got the idea of
putting it into the loop of a DDL. Tweaked really subtle with a long delay.
Each repeat becomes more and more twisted and messes with the source. The
next thing I gotta try is patching it in before the filters on my SH5. :)
Eric, you must have been totally inspired to come up with this. This is a
unique edge. If you want totally warped valve stuff, this is where you'll
find it. And I haven't even got to the sound effects I originally envisaged
with it. It's just too much fun. I'm kinda reluctant to mention it because
then everyone will have one and it won't be so unique but on the other
hand, Eric needs all the encouragement we can give him to see what else he
can squeeze out of a bunch of valves. Bravo.
I can't get over the feel of the knobs too BTW. Where 'n' hell do you get
Anyway, enough of my waxing hysterical, but you should hear this thing. It
totally kicks ass.
When I'm suitably inspired enough to crank out my valve bits again, I'm
planning a bank of maybe 8 or so valve pre-amps with a view to processing
all my analogue sources. And a pair on the output of my rack mixer. I must
admit that I don't find working with valves trivial. The one pre-amp I did
build was an effort. Mainly in that obtaining the parts is difficult in my
current situation. But well worth it in the long run. And, I feel a far
better solution to buying motherboards with valves on-board. Cute though
Be absolutely Icebox.
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