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MFB Kraftzwerg
Old 3rd February 2009
  #1
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MonoBrow's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
MFB Kraftzwerg

I checked it out last week and thought it was pretty nice.Couldnt patch anything in the shops demo room but well.
Anyone here has one for a while? Would be glad for more input.

MFB-SYNTH3e

Last edited by MonoBrow; 3rd February 2009 at 10:51 PM.. Reason: added link
Old 3rd February 2009
  #2
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seen-da-sizer's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I do not own one (yet), but from what I heard in this video I want one:

Old 3rd February 2009 | Show parent
  #3
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CarlV's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
can you easily rackmount these?
Old 4th February 2009 | Show parent
  #4
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🎧 10 years
Thx for the video i should really pester the guys in the shop to hand me some patchcords.I think i am sold on one.heh
Old 4th February 2009 | Show parent
  #5
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seen-da-sizer's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by CarlV ➑️
can you easily rackmount these?
I don't think so but MFB has rack-mount modules based on the same circuits.

Old 4th February 2009 | Show parent
  #6
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Reptil's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
I want the SEQ02, and VD01. Cheap and useful.
The OSC02 also sounds pretty good!
Old 29th April 2009 | Show parent
  #7
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Derp's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I just ordered one of these today. I'll let everybody know how it is in person when it arrives.
Old 29th April 2009 | Show parent
  #8
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🎧 10 years
You can buy the Kraftzwerg in Eurorack modular format - KRAFTZWERGe

Their case including MIDI/CV & Power Supply is another 149 EU.
Old 2nd May 2009 | Show parent
  #9
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Derp ➑️
I just ordered one of these today. I'll let everybody know how it is in person when it arrives.
Got it yesterday, plugged it in last night, and toyed with it today. Once I get a proper power supply (Analogue Haven was out of the 12v ones so they sent a 9v which works fine when going by CV, but the pitch tracking via MIDI is just plain nasty) and my recording situation is a little better, I'll get some demo-ey sample-ey thing-ey's up.

First impressions: THICK! Compared to the Synth Lite II, this is a whole other beast. Same filter, but the oscillators are giant and nasty. It's a pain to keep in tune but hey, that's VCO's for ya! I thought the default signal routing could have been a little better (LFO to Oscillators, LFO to Amp, but no LFO to Filter or LFO to PWM.) Thankfully it's patchable, so that's easily remedied. There's no patching into the ring mod, but otherwise it's just like having a small self-contained modular. My only major beef with this thing is that the master output is an 1/8" patchpoint. ...I really had to dig to find a 1/8"-1/4" cable! I got this because Analogue Haven was out of the Analogue Solutions Red Square. I'd have preferred the Red Square because of it's 1/4" patch points (meshes more easily with my Dot Com) and the demos online but as far as in person sonic quality and hands-on ability, we'll just have to wait a millenium for when I can afford to buy synths in this price range again.
Old 2nd May 2009 | Show parent
  #10
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by zmoorhs ➑️
You can buy the Kraftzwerg in Eurorack modular format - KRAFTZWERGe

Their case including MIDI/CV & Power Supply is another 149 EU.
I'm glad I didn't know this existed because I would have justified holding off on the Kraftzwerg until I got started on a Eurorack. Since I've only barely started with my Dot Com, that would end up being a very long wait!
Old 2nd May 2009 | Show parent
  #11
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2 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
So affordable! I think I'll try one out.
Old 15th May 2009 | Show parent
  #12
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🎧 10 years
Hai guise! Still don't have the right power supply, but I did get an audio interface, so I thought I'd just track out a quick demo using CV (MIDI signals are hard wired in, so with CV ports open, there's more patching options open.) Not trying to do anything fancy with this demo, it's just a quick run-through of most of the basic functions like oscillator shapes, filter capabilities, LFO speeds, etc. Sorry about the long repetitive parts as those are the bits where I start busting out patch cables and am trying to figure out what would be the most interesting. Also sorry I didn't really get a chance to show off the full extent of the envelopes. I can say that it actually can do a really good string, even though there isn't one in this demo. Also, due to the nature of modular synthesis, you should know that this demo doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of what this synth is capable of! So anyway, here's the demo:

http://audio-kinetic.iswiz.com/stuff/kraftzwergdemo.mp3

So here's some quick impressions now that I've had it for a while: aside from not coming with the proper power supply, the only real niggles I can find are that it doesn't have a separate output for the noise generator and I really would have liked to see a mixer and a multiples module. Considering the price though, these are very small complaints and it's still a very clever machine on its own.

What I like about it: VCO's! The default routing for the LFO's is that they modulate each other, so this saves patch cableing. Also, they're capable of audio-rate modulations, so they can really do some funky nutty experimental stuff. I really dig the envelopes. They can do some pretty good basslines as well as really loooooong string sounds. Of course, the fact that it's modular is just amazing. You do so much with it just on that basis alone. If this synth were 100% digital, I'd still love it to pieces just because it's modular.
Old 13th June 2009 | Show parent
  #13
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Derp ➑️
Hai guise! Still don't have the right power supply, but I did get an audio interface, so I thought I'd just track out a quick demo using CV (MIDI signals are hard wired in, so with CV ports open, there's more patching options open.) Not trying to do anything fancy with this demo, it's just a quick run-through of most of the basic functions like oscillator shapes, filter capabilities, LFO speeds, etc. Sorry about the long repetitive parts as those are the bits where I start busting out patch cables and am trying to figure out what would be the most interesting. Also sorry I didn't really get a chance to show off the full extent of the envelopes. I can say that it actually can do a really good string, even though there isn't one in this demo. Also, due to the nature of modular synthesis, you should know that this demo doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of what this synth is capable of! So anyway, here's the demo:

http://audio-kinetic.iswiz.com/stuff/kraftzwergdemo.mp3

So here's some quick impressions now that I've had it for a while: aside from not coming with the proper power supply, the only real niggles I can find are that it doesn't have a separate output for the noise generator and I really would have liked to see a mixer and a multiples module. Considering the price though, these are very small complaints and it's still a very clever machine on its own.

What I like about it: VCO's! The default routing for the LFO's is that they modulate each other, so this saves patch cableing. Also, they're capable of audio-rate modulations, so they can really do some funky nutty experimental stuff. I really dig the envelopes. They can do some pretty good basslines as well as really loooooong string sounds. Of course, the fact that it's modular is just amazing. You do so much with it just on that basis alone. If this synth were 100% digital, I'd still love it to pieces just because it's modular.
Hey Derp, did you get the proper power supply yet?

I just got my Kraftzwerg today, and received an e-mail from Analogue Heaven saying they were expecting the ps to arrive on Tuesday (June 16th) and they would send it out once they got it.
Old 14th June 2009 | Show parent
  #14
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🎧 10 years
Not yet. Just got an email from Shawn as well saying he was getting the new ones in on Tuesday. Can't wait as I'm getting kind of sick of not being able to use my Dot Com separately from my Kraftzwerg.

Just out of curiosity, did he send you the alternative power supply for the interim? Is that pitch tracking laughable or what!?!?!? I love how it starts sounding like it's doing FM modulation when you go really high up. Good stuff otherwise, though!
Old 14th June 2009 | Show parent
  #15
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Derp ➑️
Not yet. Just got an email from Shawn as well saying he was getting the new ones in on Tuesday. Can't wait as I'm getting kind of sick of not being able to use my Dot Com separately from my Kraftzwerg.

Just out of curiosity, did he send you the alternative power supply for the interim? Is that pitch tracking laughable or what!?!?!? I love how it starts sounding like it's doing FM modulation when you go really high up. Good stuff otherwise, though!
I've been driving mine from a Spectral Audio Cyclus 3 hardware sequencer...notes seem a little wacky though. Now that I have this thing (gear lust) I realize I have no idea about modular synthesis <LOL>. Where can I learn WTF i'm supposed to be doing to harness this thing?

I want to be Giorgio friggin' Moroder !heh
Old 15th June 2009 | Show parent
  #16
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🎧 10 years
Just start by understanding the basic synthesizer flow the way it is in a fixed-path synth. CV -> Oscillator -> Mixer -> Filter -> Amp. Then look at where the envelopes and the LFO's are placed on the chain. Now just look at it and see how you can improve upon it. Wouldn't it be cool to send one of the oscillators to a notch filter and bypass the filter that the other oscillators are using? What about using the LFO to modulate just one oscillator? What about using noise as an FM source? Just grab them patch cables and go freakin' nuts!

My current favorite trick is to send a guitar through a preamp and use that as an FM source for the oscillators.
Old 20th June 2009 | Show parent
  #17
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🎧 10 years
Tehehe. Got my PSU yesterday. Now that I can use it on it's own, its even more awesome than before!!! I love semimodulars, man. I mean, what fixed architecture synth can do stuff like this? (see attached audio file)
Attached Files

kraftzwergnoise.mp3 (282.4 KB, 2373 views)

Old 20th June 2009 | Show parent
  #18
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crufty's Avatar
 
6 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Derp ➑️
Tehehe. Got my PSU yesterday. Now that I can use it on it's own, its even more awesome than before!!! I love semimodulars, man. I mean, what fixed architecture synth can do stuff like this? (see attached audio file)

My speakers whenever my iphone gets a text *ducks* heh
Old 12th January 2010 | Show parent
  #19
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🎧 10 years
Sorry to drudge up an old thread, but just made this last night and thought this would be an appropriate place to stick it:

Old 12th January 2010 | Show parent
  #20
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Derp ➑️
Sorry to drudge up an old thread, but just made this last night and thought this would be an appropriate place to stick it:

Cool. What other equpment did you use?
Old 12th January 2010 | Show parent
  #21
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Jetty's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Derp my man, what did you pay for that?

My 2400 baud US Robotics makes the same sounds!
Old 13th January 2010 | Show parent
  #22
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Derp's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielW ➑️
Cool. What other equpment did you use?
Nothing. It's just the Kraftzwerg on its own in this vid.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jetty
Derp my man, what did you pay for that?
I got it for about $750 after shipping. Worth every single penny, imho.
Old 27th January 2010 | Show parent
  #23
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
CV/Gate Out

Are you able to get CV/Gate out from the Kraftzwerg like you can with the Schlagzwerg? I'm planning on starting a eurorack modular and this would be a great start if I could do that.

Joel
Old 28th January 2010 | Show parent
  #24
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Derp's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by joelisrich ➑️
Are you able to get CV/Gate out from the Kraftzwerg like you can with the Schlagzwerg? I'm planning on starting a eurorack modular and this would be a great start if I could do that.

Joel
Yep. The CV/Gate outputs are on the back of the synth where the MIDI connections and stuff are.
Old 28th January 2010 | Show parent
  #25
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SWAN808's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
what are the envelopes like on this? And the filter?
Old 29th January 2010 | Show parent
  #26
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Derp's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by SWAN808 ➑️
what are the envelopes like on this? And the filter?
Filters are typical Moog-wannabe kind of affair. Not spot on, but close enough for most. The envelopes... to be honest, I've never been the best judge of envelope speeds, but at a guess, I'd have to say they're on the sluggish side. Here's a video I made where the envelopes on the Kraftzwerg are set for 0 attack, so hopefully this helps:


(Kraftzwerg starts at :53)
Old 29th January 2010 | Show parent
  #27
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
a friend of mine has one of these, so i got an extensive play around with it on a session.

i was extremely surprised at how small/compact it was... seeing it on youtube etc... doesn't really make the small size obvious. It's a really cool little modular device you can take anywhere with you. Very portable (and light!)

i thought the weakest link of the unit was the filter actually (& ring mod...not the best). found the filter very uninspiring. yes it tries the moog thing, but sonically doesn't get there really. it does the squelchy thing, but the bottom end lacks a little and the it's quite "muddy" if that makes sense.

the best part (imo) was the dual Lfo...where crossmodulating the lfo's is really easy to do without the need for patching. very expressive & encourages creative modulations.

i didn't get round to using the midi, as i'm all cv & gates here, but i was told that the midi is a bit suspect (could be his unit only??) and the power supply was easily knocked out a couple of times when playing with it

overall...for the money, it's very cool if you want to dip your toe into modular gear. personally...i'd rather go eurorack, and build you're own to your particular tastes (although this is a much more expensive route.
Old 29th January 2010 | Show parent
  #28
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1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by sashbash ➑️
a friend of mine has one of these, so i got an extensive play around with it on a session.

i was extremely surprised at how small/compact it was... seeing it on youtube etc... doesn't really make the small size obvious. It's a really cool little modular device you can take anywhere with you. Very portable (and light!)

i thought the weakest link of the unit was the filter actually (& ring mod...not the best). found the filter very uninspiring. yes it tries the moog thing, but sonically doesn't get there really. it does the squelchy thing, but the bottom end lacks a little and the it's quite "muddy" if that makes sense.

the best part (imo) was the dual Lfo...where crossmodulating the lfo's is really easy to do without the need for patching. very expressive & encourages creative modulations.

i didn't get round to using the midi, as i'm all cv & gates here, but i was told that the midi is a bit suspect (could be his unit only??) and the power supply was easily knocked out a couple of times when playing with it

overall...for the money, it's very cool if you want to dip your toe into modular gear. personally...i'd rather go eurorack, and build you're own to your particular tastes (although this is a much more expensive route.
hi sash

yeah Eurorack is cool - but last time I specced a system I was easily over Β£1000 for something fairly basic.
I had a feeling that filter would be mediocre-but apprently the Osc are pretty decent. I heard the ringmod and it seems way harsh. Over a standard Monosynth I think the patchability and dual LFOs are that you can modulate things like the Osc full range...

An idea might be to hook it up to a MF101 Moog filter ...

How snappy were the envelopes?
Old 30th January 2010 | Show parent
  #29
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
hey steve! hope you're well...

the envelopes on it are pretty good actually. it's got the standard attack/decay/sustain/release.... but it also has an 'attack hold', which is really useful for when you've got the decay real short/quick and want to add more punch to the vca/output signal. very good for percussive stuff. the envelopes are switchable between linear & exponential too, which is handy. i usually use the linear curves for vca's & exponential for filter cutoffs etc...

the osc's are ok. no sine & i didn't like the octave range switches on them, i prefer osc's to have their entire range controllable with one pot (but that's my preference, might not be everyone else's). but overall it's a very creative little box....definitely worth intergrating it with other bits...moogerfooger could be cool....when i used it, i felt it definitely needed 'grunging' up a bit, with external overdrive/distortion.
Old 30th January 2010 | Show parent
  #30
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
I've sold mine now, after about two months. The lust for proper modular became overwhelming. I rather liked it though. It's very versatile. Great for noise, but can be made to sound quite pretty as well.

You really should use some effects with it though, and a better filter.
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