controlling your old synth with CV

  • hey community
    i'm trying to implement a model D in a computer setup. Controlling notes seems pretty straightforward, both with hardware and software solutions. What I was more interested in is the vcf in, as this would potentially open the door to synchronized LFO vcf modulation with the daw and other synths for example.

    I have been looking at silent way and it seems a solid alternative, although I do not have one of the compatible audio cards at the moment. Are there other hardware / software solutions (midi CV converters) that would get me where I want relatively painlessly, especially with respect to synchronized filter modulation?


  • a dc coupled interface + max can talk CV

    kenton midi

    stretta's vcvi plugin suite


    the dc coupled interface is essential so that the CV tracks well (this is required for silent way, max, and stretta's vcvi). a kenton midi to cv box would be another possible solution.

  • thank you. But a kenton midi to CV would only allow to control the notes and not modulate the filter?

  • The Kenton MIDI/CV convertors all have Aux outs that you can use to control filter cutoff, etc. It's been a long, long time since I've used one so I can't remember how you set up the different modulation options, but I do know it's possible and it can be synced to a master clock as well.
    For the greatest amount of flexibility I'd recommend something like Silent Way. If you're going down this road you might as well get something that will allow you to expand further, and second hand DC coupled interfaces can be found fairly cheap nowadays


    "An analogue voltage, usually between zero and 10 volts, will change the cutoff frequency of the low pass filter. This usually adds on to the setting on the front panel of the synth, so if this is already at maximum, you won't hear any effect.

    Control this using an Aux (auxiliary) output on a Kenton converter"

    aux 1 output on kenton midi pro should do the trick.

  • thanks a lot, will look into this in more details. Silent way does look like a great solution.

  • so on the Aux outpout of the kenton converter, what should I send? Sine wave a low pitch for a sine lfo? and so forth?

  • Volta is quite a solution to this issue of sync and control, especially interesting is the tuning system...

  • that is a good point, I had forgotten about volta.
    I guess it is really time to get a hold of a soundcard with DC-coupled outputs...

  • i'm planning on getting the es-1 module. it's a nice solution if you are working with the euro format.

    dc-coupled interface is nice. second hand motu 828 mkii's.

  • I think you can do this with a doepfer dark energy. I don't know precisely what control it offers but I know some people have bought it for that reason.

  • i haven't used volta, but i do have a es-3 from expert sleepers for my modular that is wonderful. and once it is getting out of my computer, i can add adapters to plug into most synths.

  • what's the difference between the es-3 and es-1??

  • es-3 has lightpipe in, while es-1 is audio in. th es-4 is spdif in.

  • I love my ES3, gonna expand it with an ES5 soon

  • i wish i could! i have an older one that won't support it. oh well. @pat_00 have you played with the new make noise echophon?

  • @Active, if you mean you have the original ES-3, you can do a really simple modification to that to add the extra headers to be able to use the ES-5. Anyone comfortable with soldering could do that for you in a few minutes.

    Here's the instructions for that:

    p.s. - I just realized this was a thread from last year, but maybe this info would be useful to @Active. Expert Sleepers stuff is niche enough it's probably worth adding a little tidbit of info in case someone finds it in a search like I just did.