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Mutable Instruments Elements Manual page 2

Modal synthesizer
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Installation
Elements requires a -12V / +12V power supply (2x5 pin
connector). The red stripe of the ribbon cable (-12V side)
must be oriented on the same side as the "Red stripe"
marking on the board. The module draws 10mA from the
-12V rail and 130mA from the +12V rail.
Online manual and help
The full manual can be found online at
mutable-instruments.net/modules/elements/manual
For help and discussions, head to
mutable-instruments.net/forum
Understanding modal synthesis
To imitate nature and acoustic instruments, modal
synthesis breaks down the creation of sounds into two
steps:
1.
Synthesizing a noisy and/or percussive excitation
signal, which represents the raw energy transfered to
the instrument by the musician when (s)he bows, blows
or strikes it.
2.
Processing this excitation by a resonator modeling
the vibrating structure itself and its environment - be it a
string, tube or plate. Properties such as its size, tuning,
shape and material can be simulated by adjusting the
parameters of the resonator.
Control and exciter section
Overview
Three generators are available to build an excitation
signal:
BOW produces a continous, granular scratching noise,
which is smoothed by a built-in low-pass filter; and a
purer tone interacting with the resonator frequency.
BLOW produces a continuous granular noise, whose
pitch and color can be altered.
STRIKE plays samples of percussive attacks, or synthe-
sizes bursts of impulsions. These sounds are sculpted
by a low-pass filter.
The BOW and BLOW signals are enveloped by a built-in
ADSR contour generator.
Controls
A.
ADSR CONTOUR. Morphs through preset shapes.
B.
Excitation mixer. Adjusts the level of the BOW, BLOW
and STRIKE generators.
C.
Press and hold this button to trigger the exciter. This
is equivalent to sending a positive gate to the GATE
input.
D.
Air FLOW. Scans through various flavors of noise.
Controlling this parameter with a CV (for example, from
a slow LFO), will create an evolving texture reminiscent
of a turbulent air flow.
A
B
C
D
1
2
3
4
5
6
G
7
8
9
E.
MALLET type. This parameter controls the type of
percussive noise produced by the STRIKE generator.
Several synthesis methods are featured along the path
of this knob: samples; damped mallet model; plectrum
model; and bouncing particles.
F.
TIMBRE. Tone color (filter cutoff, sample playback
speed, or granulation rate) of each excitation generator.
G.
Attenuverters for the CV inputs.
E
Inputs and outputs
1. 2.
Main V/OCT CV input, and FM CV input. They control
and modulate the note to which the resonator is tuned.
3.
GATE input. Triggers the STRIKE generator and starts
F
the course of the BOW/BLOW envelope.
4.
STRENGTH CV input. This CV boosts or attenuates the
amplitude of the three exciters, with a gain of +3dB/V.
Ideal for velocity control or accentuation by a sequencer.
5. 6.
Resonator external audio inputs. Before being sent
to the resonator, the signal from the first input goes
through the BOW/BLOW envelope and diffuser; while
the second input signal does not undergo any further
processing.
7. 8.
Stereo audio output. Depending on the position of
the SPACE knob, this consists of either the individual
exciter/resonator components, or a true stereo pair with
reverberation.
9.
CV inputs for the five exciter parameters.

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