The MOTM-510 is a new kind of analog signal processing module. It's not easy to describe what it does, but we'll try.

Let's start with the well-known ring modulator (such as the MOTM-190). A ring modulator is a multiplier: the output can be written as OUT = X * Y, where X and Y are the two input signals (sometimes referred to as the modulator and the carrier). X and/or Y can be audio or DC signals. The output is simply the voltage X times the voltage Y. This produces the sum of X and Y (X+Y) and the difference of X and Y (X-Y).

The traditional ring modulator has no control voltage inputs: you just feed two signals in, and get one signal out. The MOTM-510 takes this concept and generates entire new types of waveforms.

Instead of the two audio inputs found in a typical ring modulator, the WaveWarper has three. The transfer function is OUT = X * (Y/Z)^m, where:

  • X is the Gain signal, controlling the overall amplitude of the output
  • Y is the main audio signal, the one that is getting "warped"
  • Z is the divisor signal, modulating the amplitude of the main audio signal before it gets warped
  • M is the warp Factor, a fixed exponential signal that is doing the "warping" (no, it's not voltage controlled)
  • M varies (by the Factor knob) from 0.2 to 0.6 (Root), 1 (Unity, which makes it similar to a ring modulator), to 2 to 5 (Power)
  • Each input (X/Y/Z) has its own attenuator
  • the Audio Out is AC-coupled and band-limited to 18Khz. The Full Out is DC-coupled and can go as high as 200Khz!

But wait, there's more! There are three DC-coupled inputs called Offset. These can be DC control voltages (LFOs, EGs, etc) that add to the audio signals. In this manner, the WaveWarper can respond to six different modulation sources simultaneously.

Great.. so what does this MEAN? Well, it means you can make an absolute mess of even the simplest waveform. You can warp LFOs, or the output of envelopes such as the MOTM-800, into bizarre new waveforms. Any line-level audio signal can be processed.

NOTE TO KIT BUILDERS: this kit contains an expensive IC. A REALLY expensive IC. It is in a socket, but will NOT survive if you put it in backwards. A replacement chip is $60.