Moog Werkstatt-Ø1

Moog Werkstatt with DIY sequencer

Moog Werkstatt with DIY sequencer

The Moog Werkstatt-Ø1 is an extremely compact desktop analogue monophonic synth, and despite its fairly basic spec, is capable of some decidedly meaty, Moogy tones. I often describe it as a bit like a patchable single-osc version the old Rogue: one LFO, a very simple AD envelope, thick filter, and perhaps more than anything a directness and simplicity that encourages you to mess about with it. The Werkstatt lacks a second VCO, but the LFO can be cajoled into keyboard tracking to act as an ad-hoc sub-osc; there’s no onboard Noise Generator, but there is an audio input and you can use audio-rate modulation from the existing design to mimic noise for percussion sounds. The Werkstatt’s keyboard is awful for actual playing, though it’s possible to just about get by with really simple parts; and the patch header is welcome and very useful, though it’s awkward to interface with anything other than itself…

…which is why I’m blogging about it. I’ve started to devise some mods for the Werkstatt that will provide standardized connections so you can drive your tiny new Moog from other equipment. The CV and Gate input mods are very easy to accomplish, and require very few components.

I’ll blog further mods as and when I make them, with complete details and schematics, so you can follow them easily. I intend to make them as unintrusive as possible, as I don’t like having to hack away existing circuits to accomodate modifications. I want to make things easily reversible wherever possible, so all you have to do to remove a mod is desolder it – the drilling of holes for the jack sockets excepted.

Here’s a demo I made of the Werkstatt-Ø1, recorded on an insomniac night with no editing whatsoever, just one or two takes, a couple of plug-in processing, and a bit of reverb to help hide the errors… 😉 All sounds are the unmodded factory-spec Werkstatt, played on its own button keyboard. I left mistakes in to show what happens when you play a tiny synthesizer with tiny tactile switches…



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