Your best LFO tips on the digitone

Lately I feel like I’ve gotten stuck in a rut with the LFOs. I watched this after a mention in another thread, and these are all good ideas, but I need more.

Below are some modulations I tend to go to, to name a few examples on the top of my head:

  • FILTER cutoff or resonance are mandatory LFO destinations…
  • SYN ratio A/B has an interesting non destructive retro sound-ish effect on pitch since you don’t touch the carrier, but can get old quickly.
  • Tremolo: Triangle, trig mode > AMP volume (Sounds nice with a fade in)
  • Vibrato: Triangle, trig mode, low depth > SYN pitch all (Also nice with fade in)
  • Pitch warble: Slow triangle, free mode, super low depth > SYN pitch all

The above can sometimes be nice with individual track LFO phase to avoid having them all modulate in unison.

Besides these I’ve tried experimenting with some new ideas, but I’m still looking for other interesting alternatives without ending up with complete chaos. So, what’s your favorite LFO tricks on the digitone?

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Base filter modulation
LFO depth modulation
Delay time modulatio …. oh no, Elektron didn’t allow this and we’re missing out on all types of karplus strong bizniz :full_moon_with_face:


Random LFO 2 to LFO 1 speed, in full poly mode. Even a low depth is enough to have each note in a chord sound unique. I’ve used it to modify the speed of a downward ramp LFO on cutoff and it turns chords into almost granular clouds.


Awesome, gonna try that now

I think you can work around this, the delay parameters are MIDI CC destinations. So with midiloopback you should be able to control this parameter with an LFO on one of the MIDI tracks.

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can one of yas remind me how to do the full poly / individual lfo phase thing? Is it just trig / free in the second lfo page?

I’m pretty sure it’s the default setting, but isn’t as noticeable until you start intentionally throwing the LFOs out (like with my random method).

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By individual track LFO phase i simply meant adjusting the SPH parameter on LFO page 2, so that they’re different for each track.

I haven’t checked, but I’m pretty sure that in free mode all the LFO’s are running in sync (except for random).

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Not in full poly mode. They can go off sync when, let’s say you put them in trig mode, play a few randomly timed notes, then back to free mode.

In the track setup menu you can set a track to Poly mono lfo mode. That way all LFOs will sync to the LFO from the first note played.


My go to use of the DN LFO is the S&H mode that locks a random value for each trig, I usually send that to any modulator level, feedback, filter cutoff, envelope amount or decay. This usually gives some nice “humanity” and variations to any static sequence. That with conditional trigs is awesome to really make your patterns longer than they really are.

It can be nice to send it on delay/reverb send to add some space to random notes.

Now that I think about it, what’s kind of missing is something like an LFO designer tool, or a sequencer mode for the LFO to allow you some kind of predictable randomness on your modulations. Like a 5 steps sequence that moves by one step every trig to send to the waveshape or the modulator levels, like on the Buchla Easel.

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This is also what I mostly use the LFOs for, a but of randomness is especially nice on arped percussive sounds.
I like your suggestion for a predictable randomness/buchla style sequencer for parameters. There are already some tricks you can use to approach this, e.g. using some none random shapes for the LFO and only retriggering it on the first step of the pattern (or only on some steps within the pattern). This is not ideal for specific values in each step, but then again, why not just use parameter locks for this?
The second option is midi loopback, where you can program midi cc sequence (e.g. perfect for aftertouch, mod wheel or breath control), which are completely independent for the sequenced note values on the synth tracks. Good fun!

Good ideas!

Because with p-locks, the parameter changes are locked to the sequence, with an independant sequencer you could instead have a 5 step modulation play over an 8 step sequence for example and get some unpredictable results. I guess a S&H LFO gets you a similar kind of effect, but there’s something about a repeating sequence that gives a different vibe to everything.

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I like a not-very-deep LFO on Syn A or B level in some patches. Slow one, especially in ARPs, to give some real movement to the sound, like natural playing.

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Yeah, this does wonders for hihat release values

True, but I think you might have misunderstood me. You can get a repeatable LFO behavior by only retriggering it on certain steps. Using conditional trigs for retriggering the LFO makes it possible to have, say an 8 step sequence controlling filter cutoff with the ramp down shape on a 16 step melody. You can alter the sequence of the filter automation with the phase, depth and rate of the LFO, but not as precise as with a dedicated sequencer for that, sure.

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Oh I see! I thought you meant using the plocks in a straightforward way to sequence the synth parameter, not to retrigger the LFO. Interesting!

Exactly! Sorry, reading my sentence again, I can see that it can be understood both ways :sweat_smile:

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If I remember right the OT LFO hold mode works like this. It assigns the trigs random values but will lock that randomness into the pattern until you touch the LFO values again.

If you have a free running lfo (which can be triggered by a ‘1st-only’ conditional trig) timed by a bpm divider/multiplier … then a sequence of a step number (non-divisible, polyrhythmic style) then this kinda does what you’re after. I think

For example:
7 step sequence
Lfo multiplier set to 4/8

{forgive me if my terminology is not quite right. I do this technique on Korg Monologue … channeling it’s inner Buchla … a lot but I can’t quite remember how the Digitone denotes bpm-related timings}


Interesting! Lots of cool ideas to try!