Doepfer A-196

Phase Locked Loop (PLL) Modulation Module

  • Width: 8 HP
  • Depth: 40 mm
  • Power requirement: +40 mA (+ 12V) / -0 mA (-12V)
22 customer ratings:
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4.8 / 5.0
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Total

The A-196 - Something Different

Stephen662, 21.08.2014
The A-196 is a real 'fresh' module for those into the the Eurorack Modular. It does not fall easily into the usual categories, but believe me, it will give you really new sounds and possibilities.

The basic premise of the A-196 is to 'track' a pitch. Fortunately for us, the process of tracking is not perfect and so the module hunts around for the pitch to grab hold of and gives a CV output. The result is a very Arabesque output. Difficult to describe. But the unit can deliver trills and fills that belie the nature of the input.

There are numerous controls on the module that can change how it responds to its input. For example the input range lets you set the expected frequency range - but of course, this can be abused to good effect!

There are 3 modes of 'lock' for settling up the way the unit 'sorts' it's frequency lock - again this choice effects the result, often with slightly unpredictable results, so play with it and enjoy.

All in all, a very complex unit with a lot of controls and options. Examples and instructions are available at the Doepfer web site. But really, plug stuff in and experiment. It is an experimental module, so go and experiment!
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Total

Full weirdness. Fascinating to play with.

18.12.2015
The A-196 PLL is a fascinating module, especially if you're familiar with PLLs. If you're not, it's worth reading up a bit - basically, though, the circuit attempts to synchronize an internally-synthesized square wave with the frequency of an input complex waveform. This gives you an interesting output pulse that tends to "chase" the input which can be used to drive other things. It's not a module that you'll typically want to hear the output from, but using it to drive other modules (ex. clock divider) can lead to some very interesting modulation options that are related to the frequency content of the audio signal.

Magic stuff.
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