that’s a wrap

I found a temporary-ish solution to my touchplate/BeetTweek issues: a cable tie. I have this set of 100 microfiber hook-and-loop cable ties and have only put about 8 of them to use. So now one of them, with excess length trimmed, is wrapped around the BeetTweek encoder knob. No risk of sticky residue, easy to remove and replace, and it does the job. It’s not super elegant, but the tactile experience of turning a fuzzy knob is pretty amusing…

I got news on the Miezo front — it’s not ready quite yet (another few coats of finish and then assembly) but they sent me a photo and also made an Instagram post in video clip form. They genuinely seem proud of this instrument and want to show it off, despite it being close to their most “basic” instrument options. And I think that pride is well-earned, because this is a beauty.

WMD (William Mathewson Devices) is one of the longest-running Eurorack module builders there is, and are well-liked and I thought pretty successful. They’ve done some contract manufacturing for other Eurorack makers as well as a couple of lines of their own stuff. And… they’re planning to shut down by the end of the year. Wait times for the parts they need are measured in years, costs are up and sales are down, and things are just too difficult to keep going. I wonder how other makers are faring? Some do still seem to be thriving, aside from difficulty sourcing parts for popular designs that are sold out.

WMD, and their collaboration WMD/SSF (Steady State Fate) was never really a staple of my own rack — but I have had a few of their items during my modular journey. Mini Slew is a good design overall, though with some odd quirks that led me to favor Make Noise Function. MSCL is a worthy compressor. I’ve had a couple of their utilities, Blender and S.P.O. A limited edition black colorway of their Geiger Counter pedal was my second favorite pedal I’ve ever played with (second only to Red Panda Tensor). And then there’s the unique Synchrodyne, which combines a sawtooth VCO, a PLL with frequency multiplication and division, a switched-capacitor filter and a wavefolder in one slightly crowded but awesome package — and its expander which adds another VCO, PLL and filter (with more inputs and outputs) plus a compressor and some other goodies.

They have three more products that they’re selling limited runs of (because the parts availability is limited) and closing out their remaining inventory. Though I don’t really have any room in my rack, I decided to grab another Synchrodyne.

My thinking is, it’s the same size as Inertia, so I can swap between the two of them for different flavors of weird filtering. Or put it in the Pod if I must. Or otherwise find ways to make it work. It’s unlikely to be the last change I make to the modular anyway, so… we’ll just see what happens.

Switched-capacitor filters are weird things, and they are very rare in Eurorack. It runs in discrete time, rather than continuous time — it is clocked at a high rate, switching between different capacitors to change the filter cutoff, rather than the typical voltage-controlled filter which changes a resistor value instead. Clock it slowly enough and it starts getting glitchy and aliasing despite being 100% analog. Synchrodyne’s brilliance is to take an audio rate VCO, use a PLL to multiply its frequently drastically to clock the filter, and run the VCO through that filter by default. But in good modular form, each puzzle piece has its own I/O jacks and can be used independently or in tandem with the other pieces. It’s a little mad science lab in a single module.

When I had it originally it was great for experimenting with. At some point I kind of turned away from sawtooth waves and filters in general, obsessed with FM and wavefolding and LPGs and wavetables. So I let it go. Since then I’ve occasionally missed that crazy high rate clock for a few different purposes, and certainly come back around toward creative use of filters.

Grabbing it now at a discount seems like a good move. They haven’t always been available, and they’re going to be much less so in the future. If I decide later that I don’t want it, it should not be hard to sell for a good price — I’m not profit-seeking here with this stuff, but that likely increase in market value does give me confidence about grabbing it again now.

Speaking of shortages, there’s a global shortage of Ozempic now. A diabetes med injected once a week, it’s the exact same stuff that’s in Wegovy, though Wegovy is a higher dose. Wegovy is prescribed as an obesity treatment, but has not been well covered by insurance and has been a bit scarce in supply. So apparently some TikTok influencers have decided to push Ozempic as a weight-loss drug, and some doctors are perfectly willing to write scripts for whatever their patients ask for.

As a result, I need to call my doctor’s office tomorrow. I’m probably going to have to be switched to something else — most likely another GLP-1 inhibitor. Hopefully they don’t go chasing that one too.

As a result, I need to call my doctor’s office tomorrow. I’m probably going to have to be switched to something else — most likely another GLP-1 inhibitor. Hopefully they don’t go chasing that one too.

As a result, I guess I’m probably going to have to be switched to something else. Most likely another GLP-1 inhibitor, which also would likely have minor weight loss effects. So hopefully they don’t go chasing that one too.

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