DIY and Pre-Assembled Eurorack Products

Some useful basics...

to most people a synthesizer is keyboard with a control panel of knobs and blinking LEDs. Show people a modular synth and you get 'that's a weird mixer!' 'Is that an old telephone exchange?' 'What the hell is it?' 'Why are there all those wires?'

within a synthesizer is a selection of units. each of these units performs a task that is done in the 'keyboard' type synthesizers people are more familiar with - sound generation, effects, volume control etc.  Within each of these units are signal paths, components, inputs and outputs. Now imagine being able to move around and re-order these units, components and paths in any way - that's pretty much modular  modular synthesis!

a while back I seemed to be answering a lot of questions via PM, msn and email about real basic modular synth stuff - the same stuff i wish someone had told me when i first started, but was afraid to ask and wasnt yet ready to cope with reading whole books on principles of synthesis/engineering. (so, for those with zero knowledge here's some slightly oversimplified, sweeping generalisations, for the sake of easy explanations to those who want to get their newly acquired/setup modular tested and working):

p.s. You're using a modular - rules are meant to be broken; with  the exception of manufacturer warnings about specific module settings, inputs and outputs that dont like being used in 
certain ways, experiment! the whole point of a modular is to mess about and find unusual ways to do stuff [***dont fool with mains electric unless you know for certain what youre doing***].

before digging around inside your case:

please make sure that:
- you have a standard pinout eurorack bus board
- you have +12V and -12V power rails on that bus board [and if +5V supply is required]
- the power rails are not overloaded
!!!Before doing ANYTHING, disconnect the power from your system!!!
- Double check the polarity of the ribbon cable - The red stripe should be aligned with the -12V rail, on both the module and on the bus board [we use shrouded headers but it's still possible a cable has been assembled with the stripe on the wrong side of the shroud so always double check!].

Also make sure when using busboards without shrouded headers that the pins aren't transposed a row vertically or horizontally – all pins should insert into holes on the cable.

Although we use both PTC fuses and schottky diodes to provide reverse polarity and excess current protection, we do not take any responsibility for damages caused by wrong power supply connection! After you have connected everything, double checked it and ensured your case is closed such that no power lines can be touched by your hand or any stray cables drop into holes, turn on your system and test.

these links may be of interest/use to many: