Integrating Guitar Pedals into a Modular setup

well, ha, sure, i mean this is a 50-year old conversation. it happens to directly inform the topic here though, as i’ve experienced it.

you can of course level-shift or rectify audio or CV at any point in any system, so its never like a hard-and-fast division. its a design decision that optimizes some use cases at the expense of others. whether this is overall “better” or not has been discussed a lot and is kinda beside the point.

but here i’m just sayin, i’ve done many, many tours with a very small buchla system (like 2 panels) integrated directly into a pedal chain. like, the quad LPG/gate is literally a line level mixer. its handy for that! in a 2p case, the other module can give the mixer some control: preset, midi, envelope following+preamps, more bussing/routing, sequenced, arbitrary functions, or whatever you can do with 10v. it’s a thing.

also, i’m not advocating anyone buy 200e stuff (in fact, haha, please don’t) but it has inevitably shaped the way i personally approach the design of new stuff


Don’t mean to derail this thread but do you have some sound examples of Infinite Jets with Modular? There are so few synth demos of this pedal.


I don’t, but i can try and whip something up in the next couple days.


Awesome. Thanks a lot.

An Andrew Huang video (mostly about Plonk) popped up on YouTube and he was using some Intellijel gear. He made a point of showing a 1U pedal send tile. I’m assuming the adjacent tile attenuates volumes??? Anyhoo, looks useful.


I was going to mention this exact thing, haha. I think these must be brand new Intellijel tiles, as they’re not listed on the Intellijel website or available from the dealers I frequent yet. I just ordered an Intellijel 4U case, and I’m now thrilled at the prospect of ‘organically’ integrating the few pedals I have with a tiny euro system (somehow integration seems more cumbersome with a bigger system and less purpose-built I/O modules).

That one is a bit of a sneak peak :wink:


Ok, that small send/return tile seems perfect if it works independently (if it needs the tile on its left then it’s a bit useless as it takes far too much space)…

That looks like about 6HP or maybe 8 ?

Edit : my brain just kicked in and I realized that the small tile would need 4 jacks to be standalone… It would have been nice to have a module without the knobs and with fixed attenuation/amplification. As it is it seems to take too many HPs for me.

It wouldn’t be nearly as useful, a lot of pedal effects, particularly distortions, depend highly on the signal level. You can actually use it without the 1/4” jack tile as all the circuitry is on the one with the knobs. This way it can be plugged right into the jacks on the back of the 7U case, or any custom jack board design.

Ah, it can be used with the case’s jacks ? That makes the dimension a bit easier to accept… :slight_smile:

How many HP is the left module ? It looks like the size of the Plonk underneath + maybe 4 ? So 16HP ? That’s just the space I have left on my 1U row…

I still think something with fixed attenuation/amplification should work for most effects (and many effects already have some sort of mix and input/output control) but I understand the choices you made.

Yes, a lot of people don’t use the Audio I/O 1U for example so this is a way for them to use those in/out jacks for something else. I can’t remember the size at the moment…

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I think I speak for the entire lines community when I say that although we don’t have 1.1M youtube subscribers, we also appreciate sneak peeks and are great at keeping secrets.


I doubt most people (I mean, there’s not that many modular users, and many of them probably wouldn’t watch that channel) who were watching Andrew’s channel are familiar enough with Intellijel products to realize what it was :wink: Some keen eyed people around here though


I mean lines is just the best!


I’m currently using a bastl hendrikson for this.

I started on guitar, so definitely have more pedals that modules. Currently using it with a CT5 but have also used gated fuzz pedals and hooked up the wet/dry to a slow sine wave and had the fuzz fade in and out like a fuzzy flowing wave of seaweed.

not mentioned yet, but I’ve been pretty happy with the Malekko SND/RTN. only 4 HP & has cv control over the mix! the send attenuator can really make the input signal clip going into the pedal(s)…(great for overdrive/bitcrushing/etc.)

Felt worried right now because I go straight from Frames (mixing) to El Capistan > BlueSky. And like that for a couple of years now, never having a problem.

Can I broke something connecting it like that?

For those who asked, the Intellijel 1U pedal interface is now available for sale:

The return input can also be used to connect a guitar or other device that needs a high impedance input into your modular.


they’re relatively straightforward to build - I’m kicking the tyres on a simple DIY send/return module (that uses a TRS insert jack)… but the moment you want to add CV control over mix you go from a (very) simple attenuation/amplification circuit to needing to build a VCA or bung a 2164 on there. But that’s all you really need: some attenuation out, some amplification in, and then pots or a VCA in the right places.

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I really want to use distortion in my setup but I keep running into this same problem with multiple guitar pedals. Whenever I activate the distortion pedal my volume drops significantly. I don’t have this problem with any other type of pedal, only distortions.

Now, I thought I fully understood line level vs. modular level and impedance matching but I guess not. I am using a Melekko SND/RTN to do the level converting. I run the send out to the distortion pedal, into a direct box, then back into the return. I am still getting the volume drop! Has anyone had this problem and solved it?