2 x Mangrove vs complex oscillator


I’ll give that a try next time I’m patching! :blush:

I am looking for a final VCO for my case, so I’m curious about more options.


I really hope that’ll include your set you just played with us :slight_smile:

Personally, I have had trouble integrating my Mangrove in a satisfying way. On tour, I actually am sending it an offset and using it as an LFO, which wasn’t ideal, but made the most sense right now. I love the sound of it on its own though and have kept banging my head on the wall sorting out how to get it in there. The little offset that someone above mentioned when you plug in a cable to the 1v/oct input is one frustration that I overcame, but is a frustrating complication when tuning with multiple oscillators.

Still in the case though and Karl’s work is a great testament to how wonderful they are when used in multiples.


Thonk has some new buchla style vcos, dannysound, one of it is as well thru-zero…


I have two mangroves and a cold mac and I feel like I’ve hit a bit of a wall in terms of building complex patches that utilize all three. I’m not doing much, truth told. Mostly just using mac to attenuate fm between the two.

Any ideas for 2xmangrove+mac patches?


I’m also interested in response to this. I’ve read through Cold Mac Ideas (though I need to give it another go) and I still struggle to do anything interesting with Cold Mac (which is my own failure no doubt, but I would benefit from others’ examples.)

(Maybe in the context of with 2 Mangroves, to keep on topic :))


maybe try this: patch formant on Mangrove #1 to or(1) and patch the or and and outputs to air and fm on Mangrove #2? this gives you survey control of a logical crossfade between AM and FM?

I’m gonna give my approximate go with patching up Mangrove and Just Friends via Cold Mac. I like thinking about the knob as giving me a certain amount of “multitimbrality” or shades of “polymorphism” à la the “patch surveillance” idea… although I admit it’s trickier to plan to use the technique than I’d like


One patch I like is just using Cold Mac to create a bank of waveshaped versions of the modulator. Currently I’m running:
Mangrove(1):Formant -> Cold Mac:Survey
CM:And -> Mangrove(2):Air
CM:Slope-out -> Mangrove(2):Formant
CM:Crease-out -> Mangrove(2):Barrel

Tune the two Mangroves to as close as possible (you want the beating to be on the order of 1second+). Now Mangrove(1):Air controls how much modulation, and CM:Survey(knob) controls some kind of transition / interpolation constant - huge amount of variety across different settings. This is giving me a great slow-pulsing drone. Lots of bass, with the sharp edges of CM:Crease for some ‘live electricity’ highs haha. I guess this is why I don’t write these in the manuals!


Back on topic, I’d encourage anyone with a single Mangrove to focus on using it as the modulator for a few sessions, rather than the more obvious carrier setup. Many of the great classic FM patches use a wavefolder between mod & carrier, so Mangrove’s Formant output can get you a lot of that interaction style with a somewhat different sound palette.

Finally, as I’ve said many times before - I think the Mangrove as FM-carrier really shines when you modulate formant & barrel rather than FM. It sounds different to most complex oscillators though, more focused on spectral modulation, often sounds like different waveshapes are fading in and out.


Your “place a wavefolder between modulator and carrier” combined with constantly referring to 1:1 FM as “wavefolder”-like sounds are giving me great ideas. thanks!


Can confirm that mangrove as the modulator for any clean sine osc in an FM setup is absolutely beautiful. I do this all the time. It’s very convenient having the air parameter: reduces the need to for tons of vcas in the modulation path (tho one is still nice).

When I first got a mangrove it threw me off that the FM input didn’t have the same depth as other oscs that I was used to (I think it’s audio rate only, right?), but I adjusted once I figured out how formant and barrel could interact to divide the wave. For trad FM I’ve also found the index input to be quite useful. You can set up FM feedback loops between multiple mangroves and then use one offset to quickly shift how chaotic/noisy things get.


great ideas above. (off topic):, I just got a Voltage Block for the 2nd time, also have O and C, Turing, Modseq, and thinking of replacing my Doepfer A-154/155 sequencer with a similar style-pitch sequencer, less HP, anyone have great ideas for a sequencer that you love that would work with what I currently have? To use with 2 Mangroves, Just Friends, Sisters, Cold Mac and several other garden variety VCO’s I have…Been thru a lot of sequencers the past 2 years, all the major ones, ended up with Doepfer.


You’re probably aware of it, but Korg SQ-1 is a nice step sequencer, 0 HP. 2 CV outs for your 2 Mangroves.

That new Random Source standalone version of the Serge TKB should be pretty awesome too, whenever it eventually comes out.


It’s Saturday, which is patching day around here.

I’m not particularly familiar with the sound of complex oscillators. I get that it’s “one oscillator modulating another,” roughly, but what can I hope to achieve musically by using my two Mangroves in this configuration?

I have been experimenting with routing and cross-patching Mangroves via Cold Mac but the results have been often that spinning Survey does nothing, or I produce “FM” which seems to me chiefly a way of making oscillators sound worse not better…

Are there any practical and highly musical outcomes I can look for here, or should I mainly be interested in this as more of an exploration of synthesis for its own sake?


I think if you don’t like the sound of FM, you might not get much out of this configuration. I’m tempted to be like “you’re entitled to your wrong opinion” here, but it is true that “here be dragons the weird sounds”


Hmmm… how are you “producing FM”? You can certainly make some crazy sounds, but also piano/bells/guitar/other “nicer” sounding stuff. FM is all about frequency ratios between the two osc’s, and keeping that ratio the same while playing, i.e. sending both osc’s the same pitch cv once you’ve tuned.

edit: this is my, very limited, understanding of FM.


Maybe you already are aware, but the result of FM is very dependent on tuning. If you didn’t like the results you got so far, maybe try carefully tuning the two oscillators to ratios such as octaves or fifths (e.g. 2:1, 3:1, 3:2) and then play a bit with the fine tune for slight detuning. It’s true that many FM sounds are a bit of an “acquired taste”, but if the oscillators are tuned well, it can also sound beautiful in a more “traditional” way.

Also, try modulating Air of one mangrove with the other. It’s easily my favorite thing to modulate at audio rates with mangroves.


Piano and bells please! This would be nice to achieve, really no idea how…

Edit: Ok so I should tune my oscs intervallically. This is a good start.


As @x2mirko said, the most musical results you will get by carefully tuning both oscillators to each other and using the same CV source for pitch changes. 2:1 is a good starting point but also try 1:2 for a great bass.
Try experimenting with adding envelopes to FM index. This can really help sculpting sounds.
Also experiment with Mangrove’s soft sync and uneven ratios between the oscillators (syncing the modulating oscillator with the square out from the modulated oscillator).

FMing Mangrove is nice, but modulating Mangrove’s amplitude (Air) is really where it shines (imho). Again, seconding @x2mirko:wink: When doing so, explore the differences in positive and negative attenuvertion of the modulating signal.

PS: Also check out Chris Meyer’s videos on FM and AM


Being an FM junkie myself, I thought FM on the Mangrove wasn’t ideal – the depth of modulation isn’t much, which is typical of linear FM that’s not thru-zero – and agree that modulating Air is much more satisfying.

Also don’t ignore 1:1 with FM, or 1:(almost 1). Tuning just slightly off of an integer ratio can lead to some really satisfying movement in the sound.

Of all the modules I’ve tried, Hertz Donut mk2 is my ideal linear FM choice, whether using it as a complex oscillator or as one or two carriers with other VCOs as modulators (like the E370 :heart_eyes:)


Thank you everyone!! I honestly had no idea I was supposed to tune the second oscillator or even feed it CV. I was just sort of playing the coarse tuning on the second Mangrove like a radio, looking for interesting things to appear.

Chris Meyer has a good article about sync (which is clearer now though not entirely understood) but I could use a little help as it’s not totally clear how to apply to my setup.

So would I send Square out from Mangrove 1 (my main oscillator) to Sync in on Mangrove 2 (my modulator)? Or does it matter which is sync’ed to which?


You generally sync the modulator to the main oscillator (as you described). What you want is to have each cycle of your main oscillator be influenced in exactly the same way by the modulator. If you reset the modulators cycle each time the main oscillators cycle starts again (that’s [basically] what sync does), you guarantee that this is the case.