Mannequins Just Friends

Discuss… :grinning:



I’m on the verge of a similarly irresponsible decision. I was really looking forward to this one, but the final product has really surpassed my expectations. So many potential uses and avenues to explore. Mind boggling!

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Also oredered, looks like it will be a bit of a brain twister. Looking forward to some coldMac esque videos when all sandwiches are eaten. :grinning:

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ordered two – i’m so ready for this.

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i’m afraid to read the manual because if i understand it i’ll want it RIGHT NOW

cant pull the trigger yet tho


Ha! If any module needed a proper video demo it would be this. Confused, excited, and contemplating what I can sell to pay for this…

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somethings gotta go
just about to bump my auction thread on muffs with the sacrificial lamb

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Stolen from muffs ( from senor whimsical himself)
A back story

Just Friends has been an all consuming project for the better part of six months. Through the process Whimsical Raps has transitioned through numerous stages of development and decline. These have materialized both personally and professionally, the lessons of which have formed the foundation for how this new creation can be conceived and described.

Originally described as a ‘tempo-relative modulation source’ the design centred on LFOs running at musical ratios relating to one another. Onward this concept was imagined in a simple series of integer-multiplied cycles, then extended to variable relations and eventually embracing an obsession with Harry Partch and the utonal series for an inverse relationship of rhythms. Just Friends follows the habit of other Mannequins modules by itself containing multiple, independent functional blocks, driving them with unified controls while providing ‘relational’ elements. This desire propels the idea of complex interactive systems where small gestures have manifold influence.

The functional endeavour was clearly aligned with the archetypal west-coast universal & function generators. Of course this small world already has enough wonderful recreations of these designs and any effort in this direction would need to look outside of boxes. Nevertheless, some concepts seeped in- three fundamental modes for different kinds of envelopes & LFOs, leading to individual trigger inputs. Reimagining the traditional Attack/Decay mentality replaced with Time/Ramp was a logical borrowing from the Mangrove (itself inspired by the DUSG), which prompted an appraisal of the modulation vs sound source question.

Running modulation oriented devices at audio rates has always been an inspiration- perhaps hearing the Moog Ring Mod transition from tremolo upward was a formative experience. Thus Just Friends was always intended to reach audio rates for some of these effects. It wasn’t until reading some of Allen Strange’s work about the temporal relationships in sound & music that I saw the importance of breaking down this duality, to embrace the many scales of time used in music. While this bears itself out as a panel switch between shape/sound, both modes are capable of control & audio rates (albeit with limited ranges) a principle difference being in their output voltage scaling (unipolar / bipolar).

From this dualistic modulation source / oscillator mentality some refinements of the Curve control were obvious. Ramps needed to approach sinewaves for pure oscillator tones, and inversely squarewaves were a welcome addition. The combination of Ramp allows lovely PWM sounds over squarewaves, and the ‘sliding’ transition from ‘log’ into square is designed to allow EMS-style trapezoid shapes. Frequency Modulation is also indispensible in my own sonic endeavours, so it seemed natural to add that capability here, and utilize the digital nature of the device to implement through-zero sweeps and define sounds not otherwise possible in the Mannequins range.

Rather than a menu system, Run adds modality via CV control. It began with a desire to have sequence-style control amongst the generators which ended up more gimicky than musical. Regardless the seed was planted and instead developed into a way to expand the 6 permutations of Mode & Speed. Of particular note the ability to add a sustain stage, burst generation and lpg-style oscillator pings pushes the device into alternate realms and functionalities. These additions are more of an aside than a driving force though, and they intend to ease exploration of some more complex patches without being intended as primary functionality.

The four fundaments are honed in as the primary direction. Envelopes are incredibly varied and the shaping possibilities are musically oriented. Tempo-oriented LFOs an obvious focus, with reset-style sync allowing for drifting polyrhythms that come back around. Then as an oscillator the possibilities are wide open both in terms of additive synthesis with separate (sub)harmonics, as well as FM & subtractive methods depending on your patching approach. Finally the wave impulses at audio rate push the Mangrove formant concept to a new plateau- Timbres are more gritty & glittery depending on your perspective though with multiple outputs begging for filtering.


might be a sign of WR fanboying but this origin story is 10x better than a demo right now

you’re still not completely off the hook @Galapagoose :grin:


lucky i already sold some stuff these past few weeks.
order put in. whatever…

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Yeah, it looks fun - much as with Tides before, I love seeing the application of the same functions at both audio rates and slower. And: those related outputs feel like they’re inherently musical, if you catch my drift.

Needless to say, if you want a thread of people going but what does it DO, MW is your place. Sigh.

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I think there is a lot of room in eurorack for creative envelope generators.

(One of my secret wishes is that there would be an Arc4 centric module that does specifically that: a performance oriented unorthodox envelope generation.)

So, reading the “back story” text on this one got my attention immediately. I usually prefer to see the module in use, and ideally actually have it in the studio for a few days before buying, but since this seems to offer exactly what I am looking for, I ordered it!
Here is hoping that it does not turn into the months of waiting like the Omnimod fiasco!



My Isms holds an Intellijel Dixie II (6 hp) and a Make Noise Functions (8 hp)…
…so if they go, Just Friends can join!

Now I have to wait until Schneiders Laden has it in stock.

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Fabulous - does this mean the isms complete systems are a little closer?

the complete systems are already available.
limited edition of 10.
have a look at the monome site here:

LOVE :heart_eyes: that it goes into audio range and all the intonation stuff… want to hear samples of it approaching harmonic series etc

kind of miss end of cycle/rise… but i suppose in a teletype system one has enough trigs, especially if also metaphysics etc… alas for us grid-less


That was the really exciting feature for me, and it’s a great illustration of what I love about all the Mannequins modules. For me the whole range has a functional point of view that makes complete sense but is somehow unexpected and fresh.

never used an EG module

what are the EOR and EOC good for?

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To me EOR EOC triggers/gates are good for inegrating multiple layers and events with/within envelope based rhythms. Tying a sweep of an envelope to several different events elsewhere in the system, or structurally conecting it to another sweep or wave form, etc.

In other words doing the kind of thing that Just Friends seems to be totally focused on, but arriving from the opposite direction: instead of having an envelope shape generating the EOC/EOR triggers/gates it constructs experimental envelope shapes based on the incoming triggers and gates. All the while keeping the crazy envelope shapes locked in a proportional relationship with each other, so that some form of voltage cohesion emerges…

at least that is how I am interpreting the descriptions so far. OR how I am imagining using it in the beginning of exploring the capabilities of what appears to be a pretty flexible and expansive apparatus :wink:



so that’s why karl mentioned using teletype for trigs…these two modules seem perfectly tuned for one another