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Focusfire



Joined: 01/10/10
Posts: 10
Doepfer Dark Energy Help new
      #903955 - 26/03/11 11:21 PM
hey everyone, im just looking for some help regarding the Doepfer Dark Energy.

Im new to alot of tech stuff, im used to just whacking guitar straight into an amp and being done with it, but ive really been getting into ableton, been converting tracks of mine into samples and playing them as a dj mix through the launchpad and nocturn by novation, and im really getting into the synth dj sounds, anyway i was looking for just a mini nice analog synth to get to grips with, although the dark energy is probably more expensive than i was hoping, i watched some videos on it and sounds amazing, and i really want one, however, im confused by their setup.

how would i go about installing it? do i need a midi keyboard to get sound from it?
can it be wired as an effect to a guitar/bass?

ive seen loads of people with additional equipment like sound modules and stuff, not really sure what these are or if i need one.

just looking to play around with it, have some fun and maybe try and gradually work it into my tracks.

any help would be greatly appreciated.

sorry if this is an incredibly newbie style question.

cheers!


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Richie Royale



Joined: 12/09/06
Posts: 4392
Loc: Bristol, England.
Re: Doepfer Dark Energy Help [Re: Focusfire]
      #904245 - 28/03/11 02:02 PM
http://www.doepfer.de/Dark_Energy_e.htm

The Dark Energy has both MIDI and USB ports, so to use it you could hook it up directly to the computer, connect the output to a spare input on your audio interface and be able to use it.

It has an Audio In, but you might not be able to plug a guitar directly into it.

You don't need hardware, but it is always nice to have something tangible rather than a soft synth, however if you are new to this, it might be better to experiment more with Ableton and software synthesis, so that you know how they work a bit better, before plumping for something which has no preset sounds.

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Bob Moose



Joined: 17/01/08
Posts: 885
Re: Doepfer Dark Energy Help new [Re: Focusfire]
      #904361 - 28/03/11 10:17 PM
Quote Focusfire:

how would i go about installing it? do i need a midi keyboard to get sound from it?



As far as I remember it can be controlled by:

- CV/Gate
- MIDI (DIN plug or USB)

So it can be connected to most digital and analogue devices, including analogue synths or synth modules. It works alone as well.

Quote:

can it be wired as an effect to a guitar/bass?



Yes, there is an external audio input. It accepts +/- 1 Volt line-level signals. You will not be able to connect the guitar directly. You need to convert from instrument level to line level between the guitar and the synth, which you can do with a preamplifier that has an instrument input. Such preamplifiers can be found on dedicated preamplifier devices, mixers, audio interfaces, and even some guitar amplifiers ("preamp out").
I don't have a Dark Energy so check in practice.

Quote:

ive seen loads of people with additional equipment like sound modules and stuff, not really sure what these are or if i need one.



I think analogue filters sound quite special and are difficult to emulate with digital filters. The contrary is true as well. Analogue filters include transistor ladder, SVFs, CEM, SEM and SSM filters, that all have a distinctive sound. Some use Vactrol photo-resistors.
So yes there are some objective reasons for getting such a device, as it has a specific sound and feel.

Quote:

just looking to play around with it, have some fun and maybe try and gradually work it into my tracks.



Another advantage of the Dark Energy: you can later upgrade it using some analogue modules, for example you can fit up to 4 Eurorack modules in the Doepfer "Beauty Case". The advantage of modules is that you choose the modules you need (or prefer). You can find a list of Eurorack modules here:
http://www.analoguehaven.com/what/

Best,
-j


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muncky



Joined: 30/11/10
Posts: 19
Re: Doepfer Dark Energy Help new [Re: Focusfire]
      #904882 - 30/03/11 04:59 PM
Hi - I'm a newbie to this synth thing too, and like you fancied the DE enough to buy one!

Yep, it does generate sound on it's own. you can also hook it up to a midi keyboard, or put anything else in and use it as a glorified filter.

it's a terrifying thing to control for the new comer (so many knobs! how do they all talk to one another?), but I did take it to a friend's (who owns a love big Analogue Systems modular system), and he was coaxing some lovely noises out of it, and thought it very decent unit. my main job is trying to tame it just now...!

hope that helps a little

the one thing I've struggled with, and would be delighted if a SOS-er could advise on, is how to configure it to receive MIDI data from Ableton. technically it should be possible, but I've been utterly stumped so far. I've tried hooking it up to Ableton with the USB to no avail, and the only MIDI info I can get it to receive is directly from my MIDI keyboard.


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Focusfire



Joined: 01/10/10
Posts: 10
Re: Doepfer Dark Energy Help new [Re: Focusfire]
      #905254 - 01/04/11 01:01 AM
thanks for all the help guys, really cleared things up, i'm going to hopefully try and pick one up soon enough.

cheers again for all the help!


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krushing



Joined: 04/04/11
Posts: 1
Loc: Helsinki, Finland
Re: Doepfer Dark Energy Help new [Re: muncky]
      #905819 - 04/04/11 10:33 AM
Quote muncky:

the one thing I've struggled with, and would be delighted if a SOS-er could advise on, is how to configure it to receive MIDI data from Ableton. technically it should be possible, but I've been utterly stumped so far. I've tried hooking it up to Ableton with the USB to no avail, and the only MIDI info I can get it to receive is directly from my MIDI keyboard.




This should be very straightforward - in my case I simply plugged in the USB cable and activated the MIDI output from the preferences; then it just showed up in the MIDI outputs list. This is on OSX, but I'm sure it should be the same (ie. no driver installation or anything) on Windows as well. The only configuration work you have to do is setting up the DE's MIDI channel via the MIDI learn method, which is described in detail in the manual's USB/MIDI interface section (3.3).


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muncky



Joined: 30/11/10
Posts: 19
Re: Doepfer Dark Energy Help new [Re: Focusfire]
      #906018 - 05/04/11 10:05 AM
yeah, I know! that's why I'm a bit frustrated - it does show up as USB DEVICE on the available optons, but I just haven't been able to get it to make any noise in a helpful way. Got this suggestion from the Ableton forum:

Quote:

then you need to enable track and remote out to the DE in Live's MIDI preferences. Then, the neatest way to configure the track is to use Live's External Instrument device and set the Midi To... there as well as the audio input.




fingers crossed, I'll get it cooking...


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