The Low-Key Joy of The Sequential Switch

Let us celebrate the humble sequential switch.

Let us share strategies, tricks, and favorite techniques for making The One, Many; and The Many, One.


So I’ve been doing modular for just about a year, which means couple of things:

(a) I’m starting to get my arms around how I like to work, what I want to do, and more or less how to get the sounds in my head to come out of a pair of speakers
(b) every now and then, a very basic tenet of modular will just knock my socks off. Like a bolt of Obvious Lightning, I’ll realize that one can use VCAs to amplify control voltage and not just audio. So simple, so obvious, so life-changing.

Switching has been a major (b) moment in my life over the past month or so. I thought I’d share my favorite setup.

I love taking an oscillator or two, multing it to a bunch of different processors, and then routing those into the Synapse. Then, using a lane in whatever sequencer is driving the oscillators to send gates into Synapse’s scatter input.

I monitor any two of the individual outs, and set them up as a stereo pair. A lot of the time, I’ll send them into a VCA before that, and let a couple channels of Zadar repeat, so that the stereo pair kind of throbs and breathes.

Synapse can crossfade between the two inputs per channel, which adds another layer to the sonic sandwich. Leaving some of these inputs empty creates some breathing room.

When this setup shares a clock, it can be really magical in this “same but different” kind of a way. I dunno. I love it.

(as usual, many thanks to @jwm for turning me on to ye olde switch)


You know, seq switches are one thing I’ve never clearly figured out. Does it just send out a gate signal in sequence (1 through 4, typically) every time it receives an input signal? So three gates into input would trigger gates 1, 2, 3? That it?

I can imagine a lot of uses for that, just never got into them. But is that the function in practice?

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they’re, in principal, simpler than that. one in and four (or however many) outs that also sometimes work in reverse, four ins and one out. you can send CV through them or you can send gates and triggers, but they’re really just an assignable routing switch. the “sequential” part is where the individual designs come in, as a lot of the time they can do more than just sequential. the Blacet Hex Zone can do per step assignment but gosh darnit is just not nearly as immediate as the Doepfer 151, so when I saw matt’s thread pop up I remembered I wanted to replace the one I sold and bought his. I’m not familiar with the Synapse, I have been looking out for a Mystic Circuits Tree.

really like that patch, matt.