Modular synth and octatrack

I just took another look at the Shapeshifter manual, and it does in fact seem to have a simple envelope if you put it in “Percussion Mode”. You can send your gate signal into the sync/trig input and it will give you a simple AD envelope on the output amplitude. As the name implies this envelope is mainly for percussive sounds but nothing stops you from giving it a long decay tail. What you can not do is use the OT sequencer to control the duration of that AD envelope because it doesn’t have a sustain part.

You can also send the Shapeshifter into the external VCO input of the Atlantis as you said. This will give you only one voice, but a very thick sounding one.

What you can also do if you use Yarns in 2 Voice mode is send a CC from the OT into Yarns and use that CV output as an extra LFO/envelope to modulate parameters on the Shapeshifter.

If you get hold of Reaktor 6 and learn how to use it then you will understand modular very quickly. At a later date you can also add an expert sleepers module to your modular system (ES-8 I think) and send midi and cv from your computer. If you want to only use hardware then M.I Yarns is the way to go.

Is anyone using Pamela`s Workout … trying to get synced to Octatrack or A4?

I tried … but did not worked that good. Bought Yarns last week an now the modular is in sync with the Elektron Machines.

I’m using malekko sync, works fine so far

For those that clock their modular via MIDI clock from the Octatrack… have you found any reasonable workarounds to the issue that the OT is constantly sending clock after it has been started once? Even when it has been stopped again?

this is a “feature” meant to keep other gear in time with the OT´s tempo even when it isn´t running itself… sadly, my midi2cv module (by hexinverter, another great 4x cv/gate DIY option by the way) cannot be set up to only output clock when a start signal was received, so my sequencers connected to that clock output will always run as soon as the OT sends its clock, basically.

a bit annoying, not a dealbreaker though.

for those that look into ONLY clocking their modular from Octatrack:
you can download some clock pulse samples from Tip Top Audio´s website, put them on a OT track and have them output through one of the CUE outputs and put that (via adaptor cable to minijack) straight into your eurorack sequencers clock input.

WAY tighter sync than any MIDI clock could ever be.

1 Like

Hey, was just wondering if anyone knew the possibility of sequencing and sampling as I sequence my modular gear? Sort of modulating it at the same time in real time if that makes sense? Do I need another module since it OT doesnt have CV? Does anyone have a video they could post of them doing this with even just an 8 step sequence from modular?


Several options, but this might be one of the best

1 Like

cheers man, not sure I understand the video but appreciate the reply all the same, cheers

Would someone be so kind as to how this would work? Maybe a patch example? Im sort of new to all this. I know what I want I just find it hard to understand it all and take it in…

Would I be able to sequence my modular in real time with OT and then use OT to manipulate the modular? Would I be able to sample things like my DFAM into modular with something like a Midi to CV converter and then manipulate the samples at say a later date? Hope that makes sense…

In short, yes.

Sample things into your modular? I guess if you have a module that can sample. Considering you have an OT, I would figure you would be using that as your sampler.


MIDI is not audio. To sample something you need to sample it’s audio output. So, in your case, you would put the audio output into the OT and sample that audio signal.

A MIDI to CV translates MIDI messages into CV. With this you would “manipulate” (eg control) your modular yes but you cannot sample with it.


Ah okay, cheers man. So I could take the ‘VCA’ out of my DFAM to the ‘Audio IN’ of the OT and sample? Would that signal not be a bit hot?

I assumed the DFAM had an audio out (like my M32).

It may not be an ideal level situation but you can always turn down the OT input. I’ve read some people say modular directly into OT is fine.

Yeah it does but i’ve got it in the rack yah see!

Hey can anyone tell me how I would set up the octatrack with my modular? Is it possible to sample the modular realtime? Whats the best midi-cv module for sequencing? Any other things I should know when going about this? I’d love to know. Thanks a bunch

I don’t do modular but I imagine it is not that different from other synthesizers. The Octatrack has a powerful midi sequencer and with 8 channels and up to 4 notes and 8 cc values per channel. So what midi->cv module you want depends a little bit what your other modules do, if you need multiple channels, how many cc->cv you want etc.

Octatrack is very good for real time sampling. You can for example play your synth through the Octatrack adding effects, sample it as a loop and crossfade to the sample, repatch the modular and fade in the new live patch over the old one, maybe sample it on a different track and play it back backwards with an lfo modulating the playback speed etc. Or you can go ham with record trigs, recording snippets of your modular here and there and playing them back with a snappy envelope as a rhythm. Or you can go for something completely different, it is very versatile. Just search Youtube for “octatrack live recording” or “octatrack modular” to get a good idea on what you can do.

In the good to know department you find that a lot of people think the Octatrack is hard to learn and that it can be frustrating at times. I would say that it took me a couple of hours every day for a week or two to construct a solid mental model of how it works and I still feel like learn new tricks every now and then. Also the built in effects are a little bit dull (not bad, just not very exciting).


Search the forum for “Octatrack modular” there’s already a lot of threads on this.

Edit: and here we are!

1 Like

Thanksvery much Kalle, this was a good help.

1 Like