The Sonic XV Eurorack module is a four pole Diode Ladder Filter, featuring the circuitry and sound of the Musonics Sonic V synthesiser, which has a quite different character from transistor ladder filters. In addition to the regular 24dB Low Pass output we have added a 6dB Low Pass output and a Bandpass output, along with full voltage control of the resonance.
Two waveshapers have been added to hugely increase the sonic versatility of this module. There is a breakpoint based wavefolder on the input, with drive level that can be manually adjusted or voltage contolled. A bias control switch allows extra waveshape variations.
A second waveshaper is connected to the resonance circuit, which adds distortion and waveshaping to the resonance loop signal, again the drive can be adjusted manually or under full voltage control. A wet/dry mix control allows resonance waveshaping to be added from 0 to 100%.
These additions take the diode ladder filter core way beyond it’s original function, it becomes a harmonic filter module that can add harmonics and shape waveforms rather than simply filtering them. With four independant CV inputs very complex filtering and waveshaping sounds become possible.
The AJH Synth Sonic XV filter core is based on the diode ladder filter from the original Musonics Sonic V synthesiser dating back to the early 1970's. This particular diode ladder filter was originally developed by Eugene Zumchak (a former Moog employee) as a "work around" of the original patent (held by Dr Bob Moog) for the transistor ladder filter - the diode ladder was considered sufficiently different that it did not infringe the patent at the time. The diode ladder filter has quite a different character to it's transistor ladder parent, largely because the individual filter poles are not fully buffered as they are in the transistor ladder variant.
The diode ladder filter topology used in the Sonic V is rather different to the better known diode filters from EMS and Roland, as the frequency cutoff control voltage is actually summed with the audio signal before being added to the top of the diode ladder string. The early Roland and EMS diode ladders designs followed the more usual practice of feeding the frequency control voltage into the bottom of the diode ladder string.
It has a different character to the AJH MiniMod transistor ladder filter, sonically it is nearer to the Roland 303 and EMS Synthi A, but with it's own take on the diode ladder sound.
We have added many features which make the Sonic XV one of the most veratile Eurorack Modular filters currently available, and with the waveshaping features it can go way beyond traditional subtractive filtering.
More information you can find here: MiniMod Sonic XV