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Patching Between Channels

I want to experiment on vacation with only the ER-301. No other module.

I find it limited in terms of cross patching between Channels.

As far as outs, it has only 4, and if im not wrong, they are not DC coupled and not reliable for CV/Gate.
As far as Local Patching, it can only be done within a channel, but not Between channels.

So, unless im not understanding something, there is no real way to do cross patching between channels, which seems like a HUGE design fault, unless you can enlighten me about that.

Now, i understand that there is no end to the sub chaining within a channel, so, in a way, 1 channel would be enough if you could just assign different devices to the 4 outs, if the 4 outs is all it is, as far as the difference between using one channel and 4 channels.

I might not getting something, since this is too weird. This thing can do anything any module on earth can, only it cant send CV/Gate… Bizarre…

If you want to use some cv or audio on more than one output chain then you can create a global chain for it. For example, if you want to share the same clock everywhere create a global chain “clock” and then patch it in wherever you need it on the output chains.

You can create them by switching to admin view and selecting “Global Chains”, they’ll then show up in the source menu when you need to patch something in.

Here’s a thread discussing how they work Global Chains

Thanks, but thats not like cross patching freely, is it? in other words, it an input module, not an output… hard to wrap my head around that concept in modular…

Global chains have an input just like any other chain, so you can use them to process things as well.

In terms of “patching freely” I think it just requires a little more forethought on what you want to share. e.g. if you want to use an envelope in multiple places then put it in a global chain. You can even copy and paste an existing one if necessary.

You could think of chains as analogous to a eurorack module with one input and one output (or two if stereo). Within that module any signal can be used anywhere else, but outside you can only touch the input and output.

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Thanks a lot Tom! Ill dig into the Global chains.

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Don’t forget that you can assign the input of ie: channel 2 to the output feed of other channels

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Hey Neill. Thanks. Not sure I totally get it. Could you give a practical example? Thanks!

He means when you select the source of a chain from the Jacks menu, you have the option to choose these sources:

  • INx
  • Ax
  • Bx
  • Cx
  • Dx
  • Gx
  • OUTx

The last group has the outputs from each of the 4 output channels.

0001

The way I usually have it set up is two stereo channels 1+2 and 3+4. I almost never use the outputs of 3+4 because it will be mixed in channel 1+2 as a submix. So I go into 3+4 to make or process a voice or a submix but I never have a need to get signals from 1+2, other than general stuff like clock and this would be either in a global chain or externally fed into one of the inputs, so it’s available anyway.

I think it’s really just a way of thinking, and understanding why it was designed this way. The separate channels are a great way of separating concerns in your patch. It makes you focus on a few parts separately, but it does not limit you in any way. I would get lost in the internal connections quite fast if everything was just connected. I still find myself getting lost, as the matter of fact :thinking: It just build up really quickly!

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Hey Brian. Thanks!

Since you are here, what are your thoughts on the main topic- the ability to cross patch between channels (locally or Jacks) and to play with other modules? Seems like it was designed to be a receiver only module and not participate in a patch, unless last, which can not change without hardware redesign. But what about allowing internally to cross patch between channels using Locals? Is that a software thing that can be implemented?

I believe it has been brought before. Personally, I very much like the way it is because I like having the extra imposed structure and it is especially convenient for simplifying the UI and implementation of presets (unit presets vs chain presets vs quicksaves). In general, I’m not very much into making the design process a slave to the quest for ultimate power. I’m weird like that and I’m totally ok with something coming across as bizarre as a result. :wink:

I try to be responsive to most feature requests but this is one area where I have been known to be pretty stubborn. However, I can sleep at night because at least I know that if one of my users really wants unrestricted patching description power, then they can always delve into the middle layer with lua as the language.

Edit: Oh yeah. The firmware is open source. So if someone was REALLY desperate, I guess they could fork and implement this but at that point it would probably be more productive to just design a new module. :rofl:

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Totally agree on limitations and restrictions. In everything.

However even that must have a vision and philosophy. What did you envision when restricting the ability to send CV/Gate and to not support communication between channels?

What kind if workflow? Mostly programming? What are you stubborn about in this aspect?

My apologies but I’ve said what I want to say on the abstract matters.

At this point, the most productive avenue is to make a feature request with a specific example that illustrates something that you want to do but cannot. If I decide that the problem is significant then I will definitely try to do something about it but in my own way. :bowing_man: I ask for your patience here.

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Absolutely Brian, Thanks for taking the time! Is there a dedicated Request Thread? Cheers and thanks for all the great work.

As a continuation to my last thread, As advised, im making a request here for implementing the ability to patch locally between channels.

Super simple case Example:

I have a sampler on Channel 1, with other devices.
I have a Synth voice, incl an LFO, other modulators, Filter Etc. On Ch. 2.

While building a patch and performing in real time i want to grab some of the modulators that are already at work in Ch2 and send them to Ch1 to modulate event there, Basic practice in Modular performance.

If i have to pre plan everything in advance then its not enabling some of the more exciting aspects of Modular patching.

If there could be a Global pool for “Local” Patching, that includes all channels’ devices, the whole 301 would behave as 4 modules that can cross patch, as typical to Modular Synthesis.
It feels too “Closed” right now, where there is no JACK (due to outputs not being DC Coupled, and only 1 per ch), and no LOCAL way to transmit any CV/Gate data out of a channel. Its all “Locked” Inside the Channel.

Also, that will enable to build 4 Machines, without too much clutter of endless sub chains, that can actually communicate between them. Total game changer in my opinion.

Appreciate your consideration.

I think one way to support this workflow would be an automated “Promote to Global” (ala Copy to Mixer) function for sub-chains. If the sub-chain has a non-global input then well… idk just fail :slight_smile:

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Local patching is something that would make my sessions easier too. While in the flow of building a patch, I find it ‘disturbing’ (too big of a word this one) to have to think about workarounds (i.e. moving something to global, dropping mixers…) to just use something in another chain…

Moved this here for continuity. Feature requests can be posted anywhere.

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Love love love this idea

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Or even, 2 options; “Move to Global” and “Alias in Global”, so you don’t lose the function as appears in the original location as you might want it there for other reasons., It just give is it an “Address” in Global.And you save the oh so precious CPU.

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