Exploring Dual Chaos Driven S&H with VC Slew: A Review of NonLinearCircuits Helvetica Scenario Eurorack Module

The NonLinearCircuits Helvetica Scenario Eurorack Module is a dual channel sample and hold module that offers a unique feature: voltage controlled slew for each channel. This module is designed for music enthusiasts who love to experiment with chaos signals. The module features a jerk chaos circuit running at 300Hz as a source for sampling, which is very similar to the Buchla 265 Source of Uncertainty but with less components and without weird power supply voltages.

The block diagram for one channel shows the three output options: Stepped Out only samples from the chaos circuit, whereas the S&H Out and Smooth Out are sampled from whatever signal is patched to the Sample In. The chaos signals are taken from different sections of the chaos circuit so if just driving the module with a single clock signal you can get six different chaos signals out of it, assuming you turn up the Slew pot a bit.

The module also provides a voltage-controlled slew feature, which can be used to smooth out abrupt changes in the input signal, thus creating interesting and unique sounds. The slew rate can be adjusted by the Slew pot, and this is voltage controlled.

The module is extremely user-friendly and offers various control options to explore chaotic signals. It is designed to take an external clock signal which is distributed to both channels. The channels work independently and can be controlled via their respective inputs. The module is compact and thin, with only 8HP, making it easy to integrate into most modular systems.

In conclusion, the NonLinearCircuits Helvetica Scenario Eurorack Module offers an innovative approach to sample and hold, as well as voltage control, which can be used to create unique and experimental electronic sounds. It is an excellent addition to any eurorack setup and is perfect for those who enjoy exploring the possibilities of chaos signals.

Example Usage

If you're new to using the NonLinearCircuits Helvetica Scenario Eurorack module, one way to start exploring its capabilities would be to patch a clock signal into the clock input and experiment with different signals in the Sample In. You can use the Stepped Out to sample only from the chaos circuit, or try the S&H Out and Smooth Out with other signals to see how they are affected. Remember that Clock 2 is normalled to Clock 1, so a signal on one will drive both channels. Don't be afraid to turn up the Slew pot to introduce some variation in the chaos signals. With some experimentation, you can begin to discover the unique sound possibilities this module has to offer.

An intermediate-level usage example for the NonLinearCircuits Helvetica Scenario Eurorack Module would be patching clock signals from two different LFOs into both Clock 1 and Clock 2 inputs. The Stepped Out of each channel can then be used to trigger drum modules such as the Tiptop Audio BD808 and SD808, while the S&H Out and Smooth Out can be patched to control the cutoff frequency and resonance of a low-pass filter in series with a waveshaper, respectively. The results are a unpredictable but exciting variation of drum patterns and synth tones that are both cohesive and expressive.

Further Thoughts

One creative way to use the NonLinearCircuits Helvetica Scenario Eurorack Module is to patch two different clock signals into the clock inputs for each channel, creating a dual chaos-driven S&H with voltage controlled slew. Then, patch a different signal source into each Sample In for each channel. Finally, send the S&H Out and Smooth Out signals to different sound modules, creating complex, evolving textures in your electronic music production. With the added chaos element, this module can generate unique and unpredictable patterns that can add character and depth to any track.