Friday, October 23, 2015

AJH MiniMod Ladder Filter review

I stated earlier that I'm a bit of an East Coast lover - I always want at least part of my modular system to have a classic Moog-y sound. This was pretty easy with the 5U system, because that's the alter at which they worship. However, in Euro world, there is a lot more interest in West Coast (or sometimes 'tween Coast) synthesis, and so there's rather little that is super-East Coast focused.

I was going to provide a review, and this MW thread reminded me that I need to talk about it!

AJH is diving into East Coast synthesis in a big way, and I recently picked up the Mini Mod filter. It uses voltage rails that emulate the internals of the Minimoog, and a UI that combines both a ladder filter and a Moog-style audio mixer.

And the damned thing nails it for me. Its reactivity to modulation input has the right 'curl' to it - it's easy to dial in an AR or ADSR to get that growl in the CV response. The resonance whistles appropriatey, and the mixer overdrives in a really awesome way. I generally use it as a filter for my modified Pittsburgh filter, although it really makes a Braids light up in a great way. The filter is clearly East Coast - it's not that useful without a classic 80's oscillator set - but have a pair of oscillators screaming out a fifth and it is golden.

I'm going to buy some more of these modules; the contour generator is next (since I think that envelope will light things up even better than my Peaks filter...), and I'm curious what it'll be like in a year or so when I have an entire AJH voice...

... 'cuz you know it's going to happen!

(for what it's worth, other East Coast things I've tried are the Minitaur, the Macbeth Micromac R, the Macbeth X-series devices and the various Moog-like things by Doepfer and Analogue Systems devices. So yeah, I'm not a novice at trying this in Euro...)



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