👋 I’m Nathan

Creating an immediate stereo mute in Eurorack 🤔

⭐️ a blog post

I’m just starting to learn about Eurorack and modular synthesizers, so I think I’m definitely missing quite a bit here, but I couldn’t find an existing module or an online post for how to push a button to mute two voltages at once…

So, and I suppose this is a normal feeling when working with modular, I had to invent my own mute.

I’m learning about Eurorack using VCV Rack, the incredible program which emulates voltage controlled modules in a very nice, visual rack. Here is the patch I was working on yesterday (a “patch” just means “I wired things up this way”):

Screenshot of the entire patch in VCV Rack

I’ve patched Plaits into Beads, and I wanted to be able to quickly mute the stereo output of Beads with a single click.

There is a built-in Mutes module, but it only lets me mute one thing at a time. I want to mute both the left and right output from Beads at exactly the same time with one click. So it’s a no-go.

Screenshot of the Mutes module in VCV Rack

In the short time I’ve been learning about modular I’ve learned that anytime I want to control the volume of something I want to reach for a VCA (voltage controlled amplifier). So I pulled two VCAs out into the rack and just starred for a bit…

Screenshot of two VCAs turned down to 0% wired up to a scope module

I browsed through all the modules I have in my library in VCV Rack and saw a “Push” module, which is just a push button to go from 0V to 10V when pushed, and then back to 0V when released. That is close!

Screen recording of pushing the Push button which opens the VCAs while held down

What I want is a toggle tho, I don’t want to have to hold the button down. I want to toggle between 0V and 10V.

Well, after just clicking around for quite a while, I accidentally learned that the “Hold” button in the Push module will “push and hold” the button, so it’s effectively a toggle for on vs. off. 🙌 So I already had all the modules I needed in place.

Screen recording of pushing the Hold button which toggles the VCAs on and off

It was super fun to have to look at the tools available and reason out how to accomplish my goal. I may have chosen a long or difficult path, but I ended up where I wanted to be 💪

I bet this is why a lot of people get into and enjoy modular and Eurorack… solving problems and puzzles which result in sounds and music is super addictive.