Exploring the Nonlinearcircuits MUN: A Powerful and Minimalistic Vocoder Module

Nonlinearcircuits MUN is a 22HP 10 channel vocoder module laudably echoing the design elements from the Syntovox 222. The decision to model after Syntovox 222 was an obvious choice, inspired by its magnetic sound and the streamlined elegance of its design.

The early prototype of this module had more comprehensive features. It included variable envelope lengths, envelope outputs and inputs, filter outputs and inputs, pause stuffing, external noise input, and unique carriers for odd/even channels. However, it quickly became apparent that the complex nature of this design was more of a hindrance rather than an advantage. Demonstrating an apt consideration for user experience, the design was simplified, leading to a more minimal but highly satisfying version.

The Voice section of the Nonlinearcircuits MUN has multiple inputs, allowing for a significant level of flexibility. A TRS/mono 6.35mm input has been included for microphones, ensuring compatibility with an array of mics. Simultaneously, a stereo/mono 3.5mm input is present for line level sources, and a synth level input provides an alternative for those seeking different sonic qualities.

The Carrier section, on the other hand, caters for a synth level input only, ensuring the module remains uncluttered and easy to navigate. It should be noted that this module does not feature voice/unvoiced switching. Instead, it brings an innovative approach: noise from a transistor-based source is mixed with the Carrier signal on channels 9 & 10. This allows users to achieve modified and personalized output through pots that can control the noise level and the colour (pink/white).

Nonlinearcircuits MUN also offers jacks for each frequency channel and the envelopes generated. This feature does not only add a level of customizability to the module but also extends the boundaries of experimentation. By patching in signals to stimulate the carrier signal on the corresponding channel, users can achieve a diverse range of sounds and effects.

It's important to know that Nonlinearcircuits is not offering assembled modules but there are several builders globally who construct NLC modules for sale. You can directly contact NLC for a list of these builders.

Indeed, the Nonlinearcircuits MUN is a powerful and minimalistic vocoder module. Its design calls upon the beauty of simplicity, while its flexibility opens the door to a horizon of soundscapes deeply rooted in the spirit of exploration and experimentation. A genuinely admirable companion for your Eurorack setup, this module encapsulates powerful vocoder effects within an intuitive and user-friendly interface.

Example Usage

Novice-Level Usage Example:

To get started with the Nonlinearcircuits MUN vocoder module, connect your microphone or line level source to the appropriate input. If you're using a microphone, make sure it's plugged into the TRS/mono 6.35mm input, while a line level source should be connected to the stereo/mono 3.5mm input.

Next, prepare your carrier signal by feeding it into the synth level input of the module. This can come from any compatible audio source, such as a synthesizer or audio interface.

To add some interesting texture to your vocoder sound, you can incorporate noise on channels 9 & 10 by adjusting the pots labeled "Noise Level" and "Colour" on the module. The color control allows you to switch between pink and white noise.

Now you're ready to explore the frequency channels and envelopes generated by the MUN vocoder. Each channel has its own dedicated output jack, allowing you to harness different frequency ranges and manipulate them further in your modular setup.

If you want to go even deeper with sound manipulation, try patching in additional signals to stimulate the carrier signal on specific channels. This can open up a whole new world of sonic possibilities.

Remember, the MUN vocoder module excels in simplicity and power, so don't be afraid to experiment and embrace the unique and expressive vocal effects it can deliver. Have fun exploring the potential of this minimalistic yet robust module!

The MUN vocoder module from Nonlinearcircuits is a versatile tool for creating unique vocal textures and effects. Here's an intermediate-level usage example to get you started on exploring its capabilities:

  1. Start by connecting a microphone to the TRS/mono 6.35mm input of the Voice section. Adjust the input level using the corresponding pot to ensure optimal signal strength.
  2. Take a line-level audio source, such as a synthesizer or a recorded vocal, and connect it to the stereo/mono 3.5mm input of the Voice section. Use the pot to balance the level with the microphone input.
  3. In the Carrier section, connect a synthesizer or any audio source to the synth level input. This will serve as the carrier signal for the vocoder effect.
  4. Experiment with different frequency channels by patching in signals to stimulate the carrier signal on specific channels. This allows you to modulate the vocoder effect with external sources and create dynamic textures.
  5. Explore the noise mixing feature on channels 9 & 10. Use the pots to control the level and color (pink/white) of the mixed noise with the carrier signal. This can add a unique character to the vocoder effect.
  6. Take advantage of the jacks available for each frequency channel and the generated envelopes. By sending signals to these jacks, you can further shape and manipulate the vocoder's output.

Remember, the MUN vocoder module offers a minimalistic design that focuses on sound quality and usability. Experimentation and creative patching will allow you to fully unlock its potential. Happy vocoding!

Further Thoughts

One creative way to use the Nonlinearcircuits MUN vocoder module is to create unique and dynamic vocal effects in a live performance setting. By connecting a microphone to the TRS/mono input, you can input your voice into the module and apply the vocoder's carrier signal to process and shape your vocal sound.

Instead of using a typical carrier source, connect a synthesizer or other line-level audio source to the stereo/mono input. This allows you to blend the synthesized sound with your voice, resulting in an interesting combination of organic and electronic elements.

To add an extra layer of sonic complexity, take advantage of the noise mixing feature on channels 9 and 10. Adjust the noise level and color using the dedicated pots to introduce subtle or intense bursts of pink or white noise. This will give your vocoded vocals a unique texture and character.

To further shape and manipulate the vocoded sound, make use of the frequency channel jacks and envelope jacks. You can route external signals into these jacks to modulate and stimulate the carrier signal on specific channels, creating intricate and evolving vocoder effects.

With the Nonlinearcircuits MUN vocoder module, you can explore endless possibilities for creating futuristic and experimental vocal textures, making it a powerful tool for live performances or studio recordings. Enjoy the beauty of its minimalistic design and immerse yourself in the sonic exploration this module has to offer.