[sdiy] Nord Modular DIY

Bruno Afonso bafonso at gmail.com
Thu Mar 3 20:37:50 CET 2016


At the end of the day, you just need some people invested in making it
happen. Axoloti is here because Johannes decided to make it, so he designed
a PCB board and coded all the needed bits to make it a reality and now
there's a growing community around it. Communities grow fast when the
barrier to entry is small and there is big potential for novelty. This
seems to be the case, while you will likely not see the highest quality
algorithms being developed by amateurs, it will be certainly good enough
for most users. The STM32 is very capable for A LOT of audio stuff but not
everything of course.

To make a DSP version of the axoloti you would need someone that is an
expert on DSP programming to pick a chip, design a PCB around it and spend
a huge amount of time to make it have the nord/axoloti/max-like interface.
THIS IS A HUGE EFFORT. Again, this is not something that people just decide
to do on their spare time. Most people :)

The idea that DSP is a must have for a digital modular approach is maybe
naive. DSP destroy STM32 in many things, but not ALL. And in order for it
to achieve high performance you need highly skilled people with the right
mentality and ability to develop code with *others*.

As far as I understand, if you implement high quality oscillators in the
nord modulator you don't have a ton of juice left, see
http://electro-music.com/forum/topic-65409.html

Maybe the question you may want to ask yourself first is, what do you want
to do that axoloti can not do right now and why is that? I can think of
many reasons to use an axoloti vs reaktor for example, but unless you want
to massively explore things DSPs excel at, axoloti is currently a very nice
platform. I can only see it get better as ARM chips evolve.

Have you considered exploring Aleph? It is DSP based, but as far as I can
see, it has not attracted a lot of DSP coders and I would venture to say
that it is a dream piece of equipment in theory. But programming it? Not so
trivial is it ? What would you envision different than Aleph ? Also,
compare the price difference and ease of development between aleph and
axolotl.

just my 2c
b




On Thu, Mar 3, 2016 at 12:05 PM Tom Wiltshire <tom at electricdruid.net> wrote:

> +1 agree here too.
>
> Even on the dsPIC, the DSP instructions are able to do five different
> things in one instruction - do the MAC, preload registers for the next
> instruction, increment pointers, store the other accumulator. Efficient DSP
> code on dsPIC boils down to making use of as many of these features as you
> possibly can in a given situation!
>
> Tom
>
> On 3 Mar 2016, at 16:19, Tim Ressel <timr at circuitabbey.com> wrote:
>
> > DSPs have special hardware to speed things up. Even though an STM32 can
> do single cycle MACs they don't have the other things that make DSPs fast.
> Figure 4-5X speed improvement DSP vs CPU for a given clock speed, approx.
> Of course one can put more than one STM32 in a design...
> >
> > --tr
> >
> > On 3/3/2016 7:39 AM, Simon Brouwer wrote:
> >> Right, so the MS2000 used a 100 MIPS DSP56362 for 4 voices of polyphony.
> >>
> >> I get that a DSP is significantly more efficient in signal processing
> tasks than
> >> a general purpose processor, but  wouldn't a STM32F446 (225 MIPS) be
> able to
> >> achieve similar performance?
> >>
> >> Best regards
> >> Simon
> >>
> >>> On 03 March 2016 at 14:31 Gordonjcp <gordonjcp at gjcp.net> wrote:
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> On Wed, Mar 02, 2016 at 08:17:07AM -0800, Tim Ressel wrote:
> >>>> Hi,
> >>>>
> >>>> I've always been interested in a software based synth that was
> >>>> configured through an app. I took a whack at it many years ago but
> >>>> never got very far. Then I found the Nord Modular and that seemed to
> >>>> fill the need nicely. Why re-invent the wheel?  But then they get
> >>>> discontinued, and used G2s go for $1000.
> >>>>
> >>>> So maybe its time for the DIY thing after all.  Anybody interested?
> >>> Grab a copy of the service manual for the Korg MS2000.  It looks pretty
> >>> DIY-able ;-)
> >>>
> >>> --
> >>> Gordonjcp
> >>>
> >>> _______________________________________________
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> >>
> >
> > --
> > --Tim Ressel
> > Circuit Abbey
> > timr at circuitabbey.com
> >
> > _______________________________________________
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