Exploring Sonic Space: Unleashing the Potential of the Triphase Oscillator

Opening new horizons in electronic music, the Triphase Oscillator module from New Systems Instruments pushes the frontier of what's possible with analog synthesizers. The Triphase Oscicllator is a versatile eurorack module that not only offers phase cancellation, pulse width modulation, and supersaw-like behavior, but also dives deep into the raw sonic space that traditional oscillators might overlook.

Picture this: three distinct sawtooth waves, all sharing the exact pitch, but each commanding their own independent phase control. These waves are in constant conversation, played out through a bipolar CP3-type mixer, creating a lush and complex output waveform. As you blend a wave of positive polarity, you bolster in-phase harmonics. Contrarily, by intermingling a wave of negative polarity, you diminish in-phase harmonics. Herein lies the sonic space the Triphase Oscillator is specifically designed to navigate - a kaleidoscopic echo chamber of shadows and frequencies. The shifting phase relationships distribute harmonic accents from in-phase to out-of-phase.

Such arrangements yield a comb-filter effect, the likes of which mirrors the phenomena spun-out by acoustic reflections, framed by evenly spaced peaks and valleys across the frequency spectrum. Traditional pulse width modulation can be achieved with the nimble blending of two sawtooth waves of equal but contrary polarity. If you're yearning for the lush environments of supersaw-like resonance, trigger all three phase controls with the same polarity. More exotic sonic spaces await your discovery. For instance, attune the phases to cancel the first harmonic, and you are rewarded with a saw an octave higher. Tune further to annihilate the first and second harmonics, and a saw an octave and a fifth above the fundamental frequency is birthed. The construct of modulation breathes life back into these otherwise discarded resonances.

This complex oscillator, while grounded in an utterly analog framework, carries a functionally stable sawtooth core resonating with sonic vitality. With all three waves equipped with linear FM, the Triphase Oscillator offers ample terrain for DIY wave-shaping. Add to this the swathes of hurricane-like harmonic sweeps provoked by the crisp hard sync functionality. The inclusive CP3 type mixer induces warm distortion at higher levels, facilitating the harmonious blending of three waves peaking at 5 volts without the concern of headroom.

Functional at both audio and CV rates, the Triphase Oscillator proves a competent fill-in for the conventional three oscillator analog setup when partnered with a driving LFO. The results? A full-bodied sonic force, so rich and robust that you might just call it the fattest thing you have ever heard. Yet, delving deeper into its potential, we understand the Triphase Oscillator is not merely a wave thickener; it is an artisan of fragile reedy sounds, and a weaver of subtly shifting harmonic drones.

The brilliance of the Triphase Oscillator lies in its seamless interoperability between complex waveforms and precision controls, turning every twist of a knob into an exciting exploration of sonic space. So, prepare your ears for a symphony of unexplored sounds, and let the Triphase Oscillator reveal the hidden symphony in your sonic universe.

Example Usage

Novice-level usage example:

Let's explore how the Triphase Oscillator can create pulsating rhythm patterns in your eurorack setup. By utilizing the phase controls of each sawtooth wave, we can achieve interesting rhythmic effects.

Start by patching the Triphase Oscillator's output to a mixer or VCA module. Connect the output of the mixer to your audio output module to hear the generated sound.

To create a rhythmic pattern, we'll manipulate the phase of each sawtooth wave. Adjust the phase control knobs for each wave to different positions. For example, set the first wave to 0 degrees, the second wave to 90 degrees, and the third wave to 180 degrees.

As you play a note on your keyboard or trigger the oscillator, you'll hear a complex waveform with rhythmic variations. The phase differences between the waves will introduce periodic cancellations and reinforcements, resulting in a pulsating sound.

Experiment with different phase settings for each wave to find the rhythmic patterns that suit your musical style. Try setting the phase of one wave to 0 degrees while slightly offsetting the others to create rhythmic accents or syncopated rhythms.

You can also modulate the phase control using an LFO or envelope generator module to introduce continuously changing rhythmic patterns. Connect the modulation source to the CV input of the phase control and adjust its parameters to add movement and variation to the pulsations.

By incorporating the Triphase Oscillator into your eurorack system, you can unlock the potential for creating intricate and evolving rhythm sequences that add depth and interest to your music. Enjoy exploring the vast sonic possibilities of this powerful module!

Intermediate-level Usage Example:

To explore the sonic space of the Triphase Oscillator, let's dive into creating a unique comb-filter effect. Start by patching the Triphase Oscillator into a mixer or VCA. Connect the output of the oscillator to an amplifier or your audio interface to hear the results.

Next, choose three different sawtooth waves at the same pitch from the Triphase Oscillator. Adjust the phase control of each wave independently to create phase differences between them. This will distribute the harmonics from in-phase to out-of-phase, producing the comb-filter effect.

Experiment with blending in a wave with a positive polarity to reinforce in-phase harmonics. This will result in peaks in specific frequencies. Conversely, blending in a wave with a negative polarity will reduce in-phase harmonics and create notches in the frequency range.

For an interesting variation, try canceling out specific harmonics. By setting the phases correctly, you can cancel the first harmonic and achieve a sawtooth wave an octave higher than the fundamental frequency. To cancel both the first and second harmonics, adjust the phases accordingly to obtain a sawtooth wave an octave and a fifth above the fundamental frequency. Reintroduce modulation to bring back these canceled harmonics for evolving and dynamic tonal textures.

Remember, you can further shape the sound by exploring the linear FM capabilities of the Triphase Oscillator and utilizing its hard sync feature for harmonic sweeps. Don't be afraid to experiment with different CV functions at audio rate for added versatility.

The Triphase Oscillator offers a wide range of possibilities beyond these examples, from pulse width modulation to supersaw-like behavior. Unlocking its full potential requires a creative and exploratory mindset. By leveraging its unique features and experimenting with different waveform combinations and phase control settings, you can uncover captivating sonic landscapes with the Triphase Oscillator.

Further Thoughts

In this example, let's explore how the Triphase Oscillator can be used to create evolving pads with subtle harmonic drones. By harnessing the potential of phase cancellation and clever modulation techniques, we can achieve a captivating sound that will add depth and atmosphere to our compositions.

To begin, let's connect the Triphase Oscillator to a modulation source such as an LFO. Adjust the LFO rate to a slow pace, around 0.1 Hz, to create gradual changes in the oscillator's phase. We can start with a simple triangle wave shape for the LFO.

Next, set the phases of all three sawtooth waves on the Triphase Oscillator to different values. This will distribute the harmonics from in-phase to out-of-phase, creating the comb-filter effect we discussed earlier. Experiment with different phase settings to find a balance that achieves the desired sound.

Now, by applying the LFO modulation signal to the phase input of the Triphase Oscillator, we can introduce subtle and continuous shifts in the harmonic content. As the phases of the sawtooth waves interact with the modulation, canceled harmonics will resurface, adding richness and movement to the sound.

To further shape the evolving pad, we can explore the linear FM capabilities of the Triphase Oscillator. By applying a low-frequency modulation signal to the FM input, we can introduce gentle frequency sweeps and additional timbral variations. Experiment with different FM depths and modulation waveforms to find the sweet spot for your desired sound.

To complete our pad sound, we may want to introduce some effects modules in the signal chain. A touch of reverb can add a sense of space and dimension, while delay can create interesting rhythmic patterns and echo-like textures. Feel free to experiment with other effects such as chorus or phaser to further enhance the sonic space we are creating.

With the Triphase Oscillator at the center of our setup, we can unleash its sonic potential by exploring a vast range of phase settings, modulation sources, and additional effects. By paying attention to subtle adjustments and carefully crafting our sound, we can achieve mesmerizing pads with evolving harmonic drones that will captivate listeners and add depth to our compositions.

The Triphase Oscillator truly excels in uncovering the possibilities of sonic space, and with a bit of experimentation and creativity, it becomes a powerful tool for sound designers, musicians, and enthusiasts alike.