Eurorack cases/racks. Ask questions, share experiences


#1

They are so damn smart and attractive. And now they’re available again.

I realized though that I don’t travel with my modular gear; I don’t gig. I do find myself wanting to carry a single Intellijel 4U case around the house and play in different places.

I’m also getting my studio back to being operational again. I will keep a larger rack in there. Whether I build it around connected Intellijel 4U/104hp units I cannot say yet (joiners have been shown by Intellijel as a forthcoming accessory).

I’m curious about experiences having a hodge podge of different cases, skiffs, etc., pros, cons, etc., or if most of you find it really better to have a tightly organized master system and maybe one small portable system?

My biggest sudden hesitation with the 7U was that the cover just ends up being one more piece of thing I have to put somewhere?

Glorified dust cover?

Will I hate myself having an 84hp rack and a bunch of 104hp racks?

I wonder what size the new -isms case will be.

If a tree falls and Toshiro Mifune hears it, will MacBeth care?

What?


Isms is here
#2

if money was not a concern i’d have many cases of different sizes and shapes. form factor partially informs the concept behind the instrument (and i treat different cases as different instruments), so it’s nice to be able to choose a case that fits the instrument you’re building.

as it stands, right now i have the “main” modular which consists of two 2 row 104 hp Goike cases, and the rest (a couple of smaller cases) varies based on what i need at the moment. lately i haven’t been using the main modular so much though, so perhaps i will split it too. the problem with this kind of changes though is often i start thinking about rearranging soon after putting everything together, so one lesson i learned was to make it easy to rearrange since that seems the only constant…

which is one of the reasons i like the intellijel 7U, compared to some other cases i had it’s easy to rearrange (unless you want to rearrange the 1U part - you’ll have to remove some of the 3U modules to get access to the busboard). the cover mostly collects dust, yeah, but it was nice to have it the couple of times i did have to take my modular somewhere. and i like the form factor of it. 4U is a slightly different story, i find it a bit too deep for a desktop synth, i think isms depth is one of its best qualities.

very very curious about the new isms, would love to build a dedicated monome/whimsical case…


#3

a friend just got the IJ 7U. really well built. i love the kickstands. their 1U format is incompatible with PulpLogic tiles - a bit of a shame considering how many great tiles PL offers. on the upside, IJ is teasing more 1U coming soon (but will there be a breath controller?!)

the IJ case is amazingly light. one critique i have of most portable cases is the absence of shock protection. to me the ideal portable case is a basic frame that then nestles into a foam lined pelican (hello isms).

the pulplogic lbz54 is really well made & shock mounted - but perhaps too small for some? i personally love the size constraint.


#4

Great stuff guys; thank you!

As I’m getting further in to this, I’m realizing I seem to skew towards the ‘instrument-per-case’ side of things. My 6U case is more or less my hybrid version of a Make Noise Cartesian system meets modified CV System, but I’m very seriously considering taking the Pressure Points, Rene, and Wogglebug out, and putting them in a controller skiff, and then adding a couple Meng Qi controller pieces, and a few other bits and bobs. I’d use the Make Noise 3U skiff for that.

My 4U/104 Intellijel is mostly Mannequins and Ansible at the moment, and I need more space RIGHT NOW, as I’ve got other modules sitting on a desk. They are sad.

I guess I’m wondering if I’ll get annoyed at having all these different cases floating around, none of which can be attached together, like the 4ms cases, or the IJ 4Us once the joiners come out. So I’m on the fence: another IJ 4U, or 7U?

One additional albeit small benefit of the 7U case is that it moves a couple minor functions out of racked space altogether. The MIDI ports (assuming you need them) and audio I/O jacks are on the chassis, so it frees up a few hp more in the 1U space.

I’m really keen to see what other 1U modules IJ offers. Some mods would be nice, and especially a fully featured VCA. The Quadratt is so invaluable though. They’ve promised a headphone out, which would be great.

Once the new -isms comes out, I’d like to migrate my Mannequins/Monome setup there. But I’m not sure it’ll be big enough, as I have dual JFs and will have dual Mangroves, and eventually a TT and ES on top of an Ansible. We’ll see how it specs out.


#5

totally agree on the padding thing, the pulp logic cases are great but so small… i’d have thought some manufacturer would be making a 6 or 7U case with padding by now. i might have to go custom.


#6

We have been talking about doing a padded sleeve for the 7U cases but haven’t got to actually designing one et. The main problem is finding someone local to help design and prototype it.

The headphone 1U should be going into production soon, we have been testing the protos. There’s at least another 4 1U modules apart from that on their way as well.


#7

Ah! Nice to have Intellijel present here!

I know Daniel teased the buff mult 1U. I’m really looking forward to see what the others are, aside from HP out, which will be great.

I mentioned on FB that a pared-down Quadra would be great. One fourth of a Quadra basically, but with the EOC/expander functionality included (obviously no OR output option, which is fine). Half of a uVCA II too would be great.

Any idea when the 4U case joiners will be available?


#8

Thanks for the info!
I’ve been looking at the intellijel cases for a while and agree that the 4u case feels a bit too deep for a skiff. I have a shallow 90hp spot in my flight case for a skiff so I’ve been thinking of building my own.

On another note…
I would love to see a VCA/Mixer in 1u!


#9

I believe we got them in already, they’re just not on the website yet. I’ll check when I get into the office next week.


#10

It is around 80mm. We did that so there’s enough clearance above the busboard to fit the majority of manufacturers’ modules. Any shallower and we’d have been compromising compatibility. Since it’s an extruded aluminum piece the setup cost is the most expensive part, so we had to pick just one depth.

We’ve been talking about doing a VCA/mixer in 1U as well, but nothing designed yet. Have to get these other 6 modules out the door first :slight_smile: The eventual goal is to have all the basic utilities available in 1U and then leave the 3U space for the more exciting stuff.


#11

Oh excellent!

I actually got to see the 7U case yesterday. It’s a lovely piece of work. I’m deferring the decision for now, and may actually opt for expanding based on the 4U/104 cases with those joiners. I like the 1U strip a lot, and with the forthcoming utilities, it can only get better. As it is, the Quadratt and passive mults go a long way.


#12

I stand corrected:

http://store.synthrotek.com/Powered_Water_Proof_104hp_6U_1U_Portable_Eurorack_Case


#13

Yeah, it’s a real shame there aren’t more N+1U cases. I have a 7U skiff I built myself and, frankly, it’s wonderful - such a useful place to put all manner of utility gubbins.

(Lovely as the Synthrotek cases are, I am a real fan of the Pulp 1U format, and as mentioned everywhere, it’s a shame this incompatibility has crept in.)


#14

Joining the N+1U lovefest…

Everything about this is exciting. Cheers! A headphone out would be fantastic. Can’t wait to hear about the others. Hoping we see more bread-and-butter bits (a mini mixer especially and some mini function generators?)

Yes! And like @Larrea says, a pared down quadra would be amazing.

Emphatic +1.

@kisielk : thanks for the rationale on the depth. I suspected you were striking for the right balance of size and compatibility but it’s nice to hear it. That said, I’d kill for a shallower one. I love the trick @tehn and @Galapagoose did with ISMs to tuck the busboard up and out of the way. I’m curious, having not looked at the back of any of your 1U tiles, how feasible that would be (if only for a DIYer). Are your 1Us generally shallow or are you anticipating some deep ones?

Aside: I haven’t following the various threads but I wonder if there’s been any talk of more bus-like modules? Or of any access, via the back panels to normalization points so that we could do clever things to tie bits together like you’ve done with your various expanders. It seems like you’ve got all the hard problems solved already… Curious if it makes sense to reapply them here?


#15

We already had 3 power supply designs so we wanted to reuse those. I suspect it would be quite difficult to design a power supply with star grounding and fit it under the 1U strip, but I’m not sure since the design is done by someone who specializes in that… Most of the 1U modules are 1 or 2 PCBs deep, but at least one of the new designs will be deeper.
We have talked about doing a shallower skiff in the future, so it’s possible there will be a new power supply specifically for that.

The incompatibility with PulpLogic is unfortunate but there wasn’t much we could do. Their format is only compatible with vector rails and we didn’t want to use those for various reasons.

We don’t have any plans for bus modules at this time.

As far as access via rear headers, it’s a nice to have but it does take up a lot of space. We use very small SMT components and any kind of header is quite large in comparison. PCB space is at a premium especially for the 1U modules and as we get into more complex digital designs. Not saying it won’t happen, there’s just other things that are usually higher priority.


#16

To me, the Pulplogic cases are amazing. So great for small systems. I’ve got 3 of this size that i tend to connect together most of the time.
I’m strongly considering the 7U from synthrotek for touring. Those cases seem more ready for touring than the intellijel ones. You can even let the case patched !
The tile format issue keeps me away from buying an intellijel case anyway.
here’s a picture :


#17

wow nice spread!

i was eyeing the synthrotek too, but felt like it was too deep. the absence of shock-mounting has me questioning it’s ruggedness.


#18

So…wait…Intellijel 1U modules fit in the PL cases but PL tiles don’t fit in the Intellijels?

Confused.


#19

Look closely at the photo. Intellejel only fits the top screw. they are smaller. you can technically fit them in a synthrotech or pulp case but…


#20

I see it now.

I suppose if someone really, REALLY needed to have PL tiles in an Intellijel case, you could grind or cut off a fraction of the bottom of the top plate, and re-drill the bottom pair of holes, but that’s assuming the PCBs wouldn’t be affected. Easy stuff if you have basic metal-working tools (and confidence), but probably not worth the trouble.

If that crackpot idea actually appeals to anyone, the only other thing I’d suggest is unmounting all electronics before cutting to avoid possible heat transfer from the cut/grind. It probably wouldn’t matter, but better to be safe.