Wednesday, June 27, 2012

A-190-3 Product Recall / USB Error

Today Dieter Doepfer sent out a statement concerning a few batches of the A-190-3 USB-to-CV/Gate module.
Luckily the 'problem' only affect a small group of A-190-3-owners, but here is Dieter's statement:

" Dear members,
We discovered that our manufacturer made a mistake during the last series of the A-190-3 production.
The USB interface of the modules were not tested correctly.

If your A-190-3 is not recognized by the computer you probably received one of these faulty modules.

Modules with these test labels are affected:
J.K. 11.11
I.12 K.Ste.
II.12 M.Stej

The Midi interfaces of these modules work as they should.
Only the USB interface is affected (because two capacitors have been assembled in the wrong way).
Please return the module to the dealer where your purchased it for free replacement and free shipping charges.
Please accept my apologies for this fault.
Maybe we will have to check more control samples in the future.

Best wishes
Dieter Doepfer "

If you are lucky enough to have an A-190-3 that doés work, don't forget to check out THIS POST about the somewhat hidden arpeggiator. 
(I believe this arpeggiator function is still not mentioned in the manual or on the Doepfer website)

Monday, June 25, 2012

Locating the A-100 Fuse

The fuse-box is located between the
power inlet and the on/off switch
It's pretty basic, but every once in a while i receive the question: "Where can i find the fuse on my Doepfer rack?"
I must admit i had to search for it too the first time i blew up a fuse.

The answer is quite easy.
On the backside of the G6 rack (and G3 rack and most other cases and koffers) you'll find the power supply and the On/Off switch.
Between these two there is a small compartment where the fuse can be found.
Use a small screwdriver to
slide out the fuse-holder

Always remove the power-cord before you are opening the fuse-box!

With a small screwdriver you can gently pull this fuse-box out of it's place and replace your A-100 fuse.
Check out the Doepfer FAQ to see what fuse-value you should use in your rack, depending on rack-size and country.

Fuse-holder with A-100 fuse

Friday, June 22, 2012

A-156 Dual Quantizer Tutorials by Raul Pena

Raul Pena has published the first (of 5) episode of his next tutorial video series.
This time it is all about the A-156 Dual Quantiser module.

Video 1: Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer Basics

" Description and Overview of the Modes of Operation of the Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer Module. A basic demonstration of the Major, Minor, and Chord modes. Continued in Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer Modes of Operation Part Two. Sound and Video by Raul Pena."

Video 2: Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer Modes of Operation

" Description and Overview of the Modes of Operation of the Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer Module. A basic demonstration of the Major, Minor, and Chord modes. Continued in Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer Modes of Operation Part Two. Sound and Video by Raul Pena."

Video 3: Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer Modes of Operation Part Two

" Continuation of the Modes of Operation of the Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer Module. A basic demonstration of the +7,+6 and quint modes. Next Video Doepfer A156 More Voltage Sources, Transposing, and using triggers. Sound and Video by Raul Pena."

Video 4: Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer More CV Sources, Transposing, and Triggers

" Continuing Exploration of the Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer. This section examines using an Envelope as a CV source for the quantizer, transposing quantized sequences and triggers. Next Video Doepfer A156 More Voltage Sources, Transposing, and using triggers Part Two. Sound and Video by Raul Pena."

Video 5: Doepfer A156 Dual Quantizer More CV Sources, Transposing, and triggers Part Two

" This section continues examining transposing quantized sequences and triggers.Also demonstration of quantizing a modulated CV source.Sound and Video by Raul Pena."

More videos will be added after they appear online.
Don't forget to check out Raul's website at

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Big A-100 Book by Andreas Krebs Delayed

Sad news for some of the non-German-speaking A-100 fans;

The original German version
of the big A-100 book by Andreas Krebs
Das Grosse Buch zum Doepfer A-100 Modular-Synthesizer, the German A-100 by Andreas Krebs that was published half a year ago (also check my earlier BookTips) will probably not be available this year yet.
I recently contacted him about a possible release-date of the (pre-announced) English version, but he replied that the project is delayed.

He wrote: " There had been plans to release the book end of this year. However, there have been some big delays in this project due to personal reasons (currently we’re moving from Munich to the countryside).
I hope to be able to put some more efforts on the english version as soon as we have moved and everything is “in its place” again."

I hope his situation will improve soon...

The German version is still available;
Price: Euro 29,90 € plus shipping
Find more info and ordering details at:
German version is also available via Doepfer

Friday, June 15, 2012

Random Video: Doepfer-Acid-Distortion

I found this one on YouTube.
Both sound-wise and visually interesting enough to post here.

Video: Doepfer-Acid-Distortion

" Akai mpc60II, Doepfer A-100 system A-103/A-136, Video fx live. App
Audio - via headphones into iPads built in mic. Hence poor quality "

Uploaded by Corrosiveabuser
Find another one HERE

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Re-arranging my A-100 System

Last weekend i finally had some time to re-arrange my A-100 system.
I seems like this just has to happen every  few years...
It's was dirty job... a lot of screwing had to be done...

The main problem was the (old) location of my vocoder system, i had it in the middle of my rack.
That meant that i had a lot of wires hanging over the modules in the row below it.
I took out the vocoder modules and placed them at the bottom row.

My Joystick/Voltage inverter combo, the Modulation Wheels and the Manual Trigger modules were replaced to where the vocoder used to be, for maximum real-time control from the center of my setup.

The top three rows stayed the same, with mainly oscillators, noise mixers and filters (plus the 2 Theremin modules).
In row 4 i placed an extra A-180 Multiples next to my Quad ADSR so i can easily send multiple envelopes through my rack.
The rows below that have an assortment of various modules; LFO's, Distortion, Waveshaper, BBD and Frequency-shifter, to name a few... and my Trigger Sequencer, Divider, Inverters and Logic Modules.

At the lowest two rows on the left you'll find my inseparable section of modules from where i can switch playing-modes between Ribbon Controlled or by Keyboard (MIDI)-controlled... find and extensive post about this section HERE.

The Vocoder and its cables that were causing the main problem.
Note the frequency displacement

Saturday, June 09, 2012

Doepfer MMR4/4 MIDI Merger/Router

In September 1996 Doepfer released the MMR4/4, a dedicated MIDI Merger/ Router module.

This versatile module, available in 2 sizes (standard case 200 x 100 x 42 mm or the 19" version with 1 HU), was equipped with 4 MIDI inputs and 4 MIDI outputs on the backside.
It did not have an on/off switch, and had to be powered by an external power supply.

Inputs and outputs could be easily assigned in any combination. 
If you'd assign multiple inputs to a single output, the signals got merged.
The routing was set with 8 buttons and 8 LEDs at the front panel that were assigned to the 4 MIDI inputs and outputs.

The MMR4/4 had 4 non volatile memories (Presets) to store 4 different matrix configurations.
The LEDs displayed the input/output configuration and could be changed very easy with the corresponding buttons.
During normal operation (monitor mode) the LEDs displayed the MIDI activities on the inputs and outputs.
A panic button was available transmitting "all notes off" on all channels and outputs if activated.

Around 600 of these units were made until they stopped selling the last ones in March 2001
There are no plans of a re-release of this module.

Find out more in the online manual HERE

Monday, June 04, 2012

Doepfer A-172 Max/Min patches by Pete Shambler

Pete Shambler has made a nice video demonstrating the Doepfer A-172 Minimum/Maximum Selector module.
In the video he shows some of the ways he tends to use it... pretty interesting...

" Five quick patches with the Doepfer A-172 Max/Min utility module. The first three are in stereo, so headphones are recommended!"

More info at
,and find more about the A-172 HERE

Friday, June 01, 2012

New Doepfer Re-Designs Due to CA3080 Shortage

After the unplanned re-design of the Dark Energy (due to the unavailability of the CEM3394 chip ) there now seem to be more re-designs of Doepfer Modules coming up.

This time the problem is the availability of CA3080 (and 3080E) chips.
The CA3080 (datasheet PDF) is a 2MHz Operational Trans-conductance Amplifier (OTA), which is used in quite a few Doepfer (and other brands) modules and there seems to be no direct replacement equivalent.
The original chip itself hasn't been produced since 1975 and the wafers have all been used up a couple of years ago, according to some sources.
No-one seems to have decent stock anymore, and there was a buying craze when it went out of production.

That does mean that some Doepfer modules have to be re-designed in the near future because of this obsolete integrated circuit ( like the A-107, A-116, A-127, A-130, A-131, A-132-1, A-141, A-142-1, A-147, A-171). 

This will take a lot of precious time for Doepfer that would otherwise be spent on manufacturing new modules.
Sadly these re-designs will not have any obvious benefit for the customers.