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EssenceFM Firmware V4.3

AuthorMessage
KODAMO
Hi,
We're working on the EssenceFM V4.3 firmware, let's see what is planned:

- High pass filter: the filter is now multimode (low pass/high pass) with the ability to crossfade between them. Crossfade also controllable via the modulation matrix.

- True mono mode at the layer level: the "Exclusion Group" feature can be configured to either soft-cut the notes (current default behavior, it triggers the release stage of the envelopes) or hard-cut (like a true monophonic synth)

- Sync'd Voice Sequencer. That's not about the MIDI sync which is already there, but the ability to keep each Voice Sequencer instance in sync with each other. Since they are independent and per-note based, syncing them all allows you to play chords and anything you want while keeping a clean sound. This feature will most likely be named "Common" to avoid confusion with MIDI Sync.

- Algorithm in the modulation matrix destinations. Using this will dynamically change the algorithm using the 32 included presets.

- Events in the Voice Sequencer can be moved using the main jog wheel

- Tuning override at the Patch level.


We keep looking at your messages to find what is easily doable. More LFO's/feedbacks isn't (most likely), but we're open to ideas!
Have fun with your synth!
RB
Ordered the V2 of the EssenceFM
I also got a Seaboard and getting the Osmose, so for me the question of a good MPE, or even MPE+, implementation is paramount.
EssenceFM seems like the ideal MPE+ synth :)
Kopplog
As I'm playing with the EFM solely nights, my screen is always dimmed for a good amount.
I'm running the latest surface design theme, which I really enjoy. The only drawback there:
The selected bar/row is hard to distinguish from the background... maybe you make the selection slightly more light/distinguishable in color?!
TJontheRoad
Revamp the effects section a bit. Placing the input gain in same window(s) as the effect would eliminate the need to exit the effect window to adjust.

Clock sync for time based effects. Also delay times displayed in milliseconds rather than 0-127 resolution.
flec8
:) what a great list! excited for the release. thank you for being so engaged and receptive to the community's feedback.
That mono mode will be killer! And the algorithm control!

Given your note on LFOs and feedback, the only other thing was what was mentioned in the "Free running op phase" Topic.
Is this something which is could be done easily?
Petajaja
Yeah I'm really hoping for that free running phase, for me this makes quite a big difference in the kinds of patches that're possible.
KODAMO
Added to V4.3 after your remarks:

- Free running phase for operators
- Lighter background color for list item selection (more readable)
- Delay times displayed in ms

Clock sync for effects was asked a lot but it's still unsure if that will be in the next firmware, since it's fairly hard to implement.
RB
Great new editions!
-Free running phase... : So is EssenceFM also fully capable to do Phase Modulation PM?

What about getting Feedback possibilities on more operator blocks, right now we are limited to 1 correct?
KODAMO
PM is a way of achieving FM on digital synthesizers. Or we don't talk about the same thing?

Feedback will most likely stay at 1 per voice for performance reasons.
RB
Thanks for the quick response.
Well, in all honesty, I've only been involved with FM synthesis, and then mostly on the analog more simpler side. This will be my first truly deep dive into more operator driven FM style sound designing.

Guess one can make an approximation of more operator feedback loops through using additional voices.

Looking forward to experimenting with this. Even with 32bit there can be aliasing? the manual mention it when using more complex waveforms.
Petajaja
Amazing to hear that free running phase is being added, that's my number one desired feature.

Another thing that'd be really great to have would be an even smaller multiplier for op ratios, currently it goes down to 0.1 but would be great if it went even lower than that for even slower LFO's when using an op as LFO.

Personally my strongest interest in updates lie in features that expand the possibilities of the FM engine, I understand that there's limitations in terms of what processor / memory can handle but I think the free phase OPs is a good example of something (that I imagine is light on CPU?) that can make a pretty big difference to the possibilities. I'm going to study some other FM synths and see if there's anything else small that could potentially be added to the EFM that could make a big difference.

Anyway.. Thanks so much for making this synth Kodamo, it was an instant hit with me from the moment I turned it on :)

EDIT:

I remember thinking whilst making patches that it'd be so great if a single operator could feed into multiple carriers.. Is this already possible and if not is this something that could potentially be added?
Strider
Regarding clock sync for effect, you mean this could be canceled (or just that it will take more time to implement ?)
Giampo
A function that could be added could be to be able to morph between the wav of the operators inside the voice, as happens in the waveform editor, this would help the creation of wavetables ... even if you can already create fade with envelopes, but it's not the same.
Giampiero
KODAMO
Looking forward to experimenting with this. Even with 32bit there can be aliasing? the manual mention it when using more complex waveforms.

Aliasing is more related to frequency than bit depth. The EssenceFM runs at 48Khz, usually complex waveforms will create higher harmonics and aliasing is more easily reached than with sine waves. It's not a bad thing though, it's part of the FM sound and is often used on purpose to make noise or grittier sounds

I remember thinking whilst making patches that it'd be so great if a single operator could feed into multiple carriers.. Is this already possible and if not is this something that could potentially be added?

It's possible of course, you have to use two fingers to create links that aren't possible to do with simple drag&drop. Simply press both operators to connect them together. Some really weird algorithms are possible by creating lots of links!

Regarding clock sync for effect, you mean this could be canceled (or just that it will take more time to implement ?)

We'll release this feature only if it works reasonably well, so it really depends on the results we get.
pgoergen
Would it be possible to add in voicemode a screen showing some parameters for all operators at the same time, particularly Volume, Multiplier and Quartertones. This would make it possible to quickly adjust e.g. the volume and the frequency of each operator without having to switch screens. I think this could be very helpful when designing sounds.
These could be controllable by the six colored encoders (with a possibility to easily switch between volume, multiplier and quartertones)
and maybe it could even be possible to control these parameters by Midi CC messages, so it would be possible to use an external controller to easily adjust these parameters.
This would give quick control over these important parameters a little bit like the new opsix does with its sliders and encoders.
RB
Aliasing is more related to frequency than bit depth. The EssenceFM runs at 48Khz, usually complex waveforms will create higher harmonics and aliasing is more easily reached than with sine waves. It's not a bad thing though, it's part of the FM sound and is often used on purpose to make noise or grittier sounds

This is not the first time I've disengaged my brain and knowledge whilst typing away a question to a developer - always makes me feel ashamed.
But it does bring forth an other question, can you reduce bit depth at operator level or do other interesting things to bring some sounds closer to MEGAdrive fm and/or older grittier FM engines?

Having 'templates' for MPE would be nice though.
And with MPE+ that is 'heavier' on sending data one wonders when the midi-interface on EssenceFM will be overwhelmed. Still thinking about how using your countrymens Expressive E's Osmose high sensitivity to control EssenceFM...
KODAMO
But it does bring forth an other question, can you reduce bit depth at operator level or do other interesting things to bring some sounds closer to MEGAdrive fm and/or older grittier FM engines?

Yes there is a feature called "Disable Waveform Interpolation" that will disable waveform smoothing, sound will be closer to a Megadrive. Otherwise it's achievable by sound design, by limiting yourself to 4 op per voice, without effects, not using much polyphony.

Having 'templates' for MPE would be nice though.

We'll try too add a few ones. MPE setup is very simple to setup (long press on a patch in performance mode to assign to all parts)

And with MPE+ that is 'heavier' on sending data one wonders when the midi-interface on EssenceFM will be overwhelmed. Still thinking about how using your countrymens Expressive E's Osmose high sensitivity to control EssenceFM...

Most likely the max MIDI bandwidth will be exceeded before the EssenceFM slows down. If MIDI-DIN is too slow use the USB input which has approx double the bandwidth
Kopplog
But it does bring forth an other question, can you reduce bit depth at operator level or do other interesting things to bring some sounds closer to MEGAdrive fm and/or older grittier FM engines?
>>
Yes there is a feature called "Disable Waveform Interpolation" that will disable waveform smoothing, sound will be closer to a Megadrive. Otherwise it's achievable by sound design, by limiting yourself to 4 op per voice, without effects, not using much polyphony.


Now, THAT will be insane!!!
+1
KODAMO
Actually that feature already exists, it was added in v2 firmware a while ago
Kopplog
Doh! ...so true, so true...
highstandards
Is 14-bit midi CC on the cards? Could be via NRPN or SYSEX.

Discarded
What about USB audio? Would be nice to have something like overbridge. Just saw that the hardware doesn't allow it.
KODAMO
USB audio isn't possible on the EssenceFM. That's something we are considering for the VFM keyboards since it's a totally new design.

Do you have examples of hardware/software that take advantage of 14-bit MIDI CC ? That could be useful, but we need to ensure it's used widely enough before spending a lot of time implementing it.
Petajaja
The Motas-6 uses 14-bit midi and you can control it directly via NRPN / lsb/msb but you can also control it via it's editor that can be loaded into a DAW. I overlooked it initially but this editor has proven to be invaluable to me recently and I too would love if we had more control over the EssenceFM like this in the future.

I really love that you're reaching out to the community like this for ideas, this is one of my favorite things about boutique synths like with the previously mentioned Motas, the product just continues to grow into something better and better with time.
Kopplog
+1 on the last post - agreed to formidable open-mindedness to customers!
For real, this was one of the reasons to commit buying your synth - no regrets!
highstandards
Regarding 14-bit CC messages.
DAW: Ableton Live, Reaper
Hardware controllers: Electra One, Faderfox EC4

I'm mainly worried about stepping when controlling certain parameters. 127 values is not a lot.
jcsveth
Just repeating here what I asked earlier:
- Using the encoder pushbutton to move encoder focus from the banks to the patch selection on the patch screen. And maybe to use the button to cycle through entries on other screens. Cycle through the points on the envelope screen. As is, I can’t find where that button is used at all.
- Add a volume amount to the steps in the voice sequencer
And, as a “nice to have list” include an oscilloscope and/or spectrum analyzer on the voice page (like on the new Korg OpSix) to visualize your changes.
Xariylebrycean
Being able to modulate the algorithms was my biggest wish for this synth : )

Would be nice to be able to do a toggle comparison when editing a voice so you can compare with the saved version without having to copy to a new slot every time.
Kopplog
Would be nice to be able to do a toggle comparison when editing a voice so you can compare with the saved version without having to copy to a new slot every time

... If understood right, I'd give my vote on this: +1
(I also posted that idea/wish of implementation a good while ago)
KODAMO
Currently you can do a compare by pressing Recall (takes you back to the saved sound), then press Undo to get your latest sound back (Undoing the Recall).
A real compare function would be cool but that would require a dedicated physical key, or a button on the screen which doesn't fit the UI very well
Knights Who Say Neve
Hi, would it be possible to allow reception of Midi Tuning Standard Real Time Tuning Messages?

These let a sequencer retune notes on the fly. The Tubbutec uTune can do this, converting midi into microtonal midi. The Cirklon may be getting this functionality as well.

Currently the Korg 'logue series, and the Novation microtonal instruments (Peak, Summit, and Bass Station 2) all respond to these. Possibly the recent DSI / Sequential instruments. It has been announced that the Tooro will have this also.

It wouldn't require much in the UI - just a utility menu somewhere to turn it on. It's just a type of sysex message.
Xariylebrycean
Currently you can do a compare by pressing Recall (takes you back to the saved sound), then press Undo to get your latest sound back (Undoing the Recall).
A real compare function would be cool but that would require a dedicated physical key, or a button on the screen which doesn't fit the UI very well


That works great for me, thank you! Hadn’t thought to try it.

What about the ability to modulate the modmatrix? Specifically, I’ve run into a few situations where I’d really like to be able to route an envelope or lfo to the offset.
DX100
4 ideas.

1. Please can we have MIDI sync ratio as a modulation destination?
We could do some really cool stuff modulating this in real time.

2. Add volume to the Voice sequencer, this seems like a real necessity no?

3. Ability to text label the performance knob controls, or just default to the 'Mod Destination' as the label.
At the moment, for playing live you don't know what each knob is controlling?

4.Simple sampling capability! Use short audio waveforms instead of operators, would turn essence into a total BEAST sampler.
KODAMO
Hi, would it be possible to allow reception of Midi Tuning Standard Real Time Tuning Messages?

Receiving tuning messages create some issues, tuning isn't handled at the MIDI Channel level, it's a global tuning table used by voices. If we manage to solve that by creating temporary tunings for each MIDI channel then a way to "reset" it is also needed to make it linked to the tuning table again.

1. Please can we have MIDI sync ratio as a modulation destination?
We could do some really cool stuff modulating this in real time.

It should be possible.

2. Add volume to the Voice sequencer, this seems like a real necessity no?

You can easily do that by duplicating a layer (simply focus it then press "+"), with a different volume.

3. Ability to text label the performance knob controls, or just default to the 'Mod Destination' as the label.
At the moment, for playing live you don't know what each knob is controlling?

We can add the standard CC description ("Mod Wheel", "Channel volume", etc.). Since a knob can control lots of parameters (depending on the mod matrix of each voice of each patch), it's not really possible to display anything relevant in a small space.

4.Simple sampling capability! Use short audio waveforms instead of operators, would turn essence into a total BEAST sampler.

Well noted! No guarantees but we'll consided it.
Knights Who Say Neve
Hi, would it be possible to allow reception of Midi Tuning Standard Real Time Tuning Messages?

Receiving tuning messages create some issues, tuning isn't handled at the MIDI Channel level, it's a global tuning table used by voices. If we manage to solve that by creating temporary tunings for each MIDI channel then a way to "reset" it is also needed to make it linked to the tuning table again.


Loading a new performance should be sufficient for a tuning reset.

Also, I think you would only need one temporary tuning table, not 16. It would copy the global tuning table when the performance is loaded (there's the reset), and MTS messages would alter the temporary table. MTS real-time isn't channelized so it would have to work this way.

If you were to implement this, and wanted to be extra super nice, you could add a option on the tuning page to save the current state of the temporary tuning table as a new user scale - just pop up a dialogue when selected so the new tuning can be named :-)
Xariylebrycean
Another thought - unless I’m missing a setting somewhere, it seems the LFO always retriggers with each note, even if it’s not synced to midi. Would be nice to be able to leave the LFO free running without a trigger.
Xariylebrycean
Disregard, I figured that one out
Strider
"Simple sampling capability! Use short audio waveforms instead of operators, would turn essence into a total BEAST sampler. "

That would be fantastic !
highstandards
Agreed. Could be one of the main features of 5.0 if it takes a bit of time to implement right.
Merkur
What about a global option forcing to load the last actives voice, patch & perf at startup?
When switching my gear on, I like to have my setup in the same state I left it during the last session ...
Kaameleon
What do you think of a wonderful tracker, sorry I meant the most amazing tracker on a touchscreen with super smooth workflow.
super useful on a multi timbral machine
Giampo
Hi, I was thinking of a way to select multiple voices or voices to move them to other locations ..
Giampiero
Summa
Hi,

I'm new to this list and not an EssenceFM User yet.

Since EssenceFM allows one feedback per algorithm only (TG77 has up to 3, Reface DX per Operator, Opsix seems to have Feedback per Operator too - due to its flexible FM Matrix) is their by any chance a way to implement a function to reduce the harmonic contents of the waveforms (spectral Skirt like: FS1R, Montage - maybe even a bit smoother ;) ) as an per Operator parameter?
Since the amount of waveforms for the complete synth is (according to the manual and threads with this Forum) limited to 24 and that function would expand the possibilities to use the available ones greatly.
KODAMO
Hi, I was thinking of a way to select multiple voices or voices to move them to other locations ..
Giampiero

You can move whole banks by going into Global > Sorting. To select multiple specific voices, we could make it work like it is on many touch devices : keeping an element pressed allows to go into selection mode, where you can check several items before doing any action (Copy, Clear etc.)

About the Tracker/Sampler: these are huge features that require a lot of time and development costs. We don't want to give you false expectations, but it's at best for a far future.

What about a global option forcing to load the last actives voice, patch & perf at startup?

That could be implemented. Currently, only the last used performance is loaded at startup.
Kopplog
You were mentioning 3 points:
1) +1, exciting!
2) If you wanna install a donation option somwhere, I'm in to spend some bucks
3) +1... Nice!
bushbo
Easy way to disable operators, like double-tap to enable/disable.
TJontheRoad
A few more wish list items while you're asking :)

As much as like the funky voice sequencer, I'd really like to see a more traditional step and motion/parameter sequencer at the patch level.

MPE support at the patch level. Just switch it on/off.

Update the MIDI message monitor in global menu to something more readable than Hex. Something like a scrolling Note # > Velocity > Channel # > CC# > ...
Kopplog
MPE support at the patch level. Just switch it on/off.

... very intriguing thought
KODAMO
It sorts of make sense in Patch/Voice modes, the EssenceFM only enables the Global MIDI Channel in these modes (which is by default in "Omni" mode so all channels are merged into one).

Maybe in Global > MIDI we could add an "MPE Mode" for the "Global Channel" setting?
noyzelab
hi,
this really looks like an awesome synth & i'm eagerly awaiting the mk2. so am not in a position to add much as yet. the one thing i would love to see is the implementation of release velocity as a modulation source. i can see it does this in mpe mode, but from i've read this is not yet available unless mpe mode is selected?
KODAMO
Release velocity already exists as a modulation source.
The following sources are available:

Note number
Velocity
Release Velocity
Aftertouch
Poly. Aftertouch
Pitch Bend
LFO
Note count
RNG
Envelope
Control Change
MIDI BPM
noyzelab
ok, ace!! the thread i saw it on must have been out of date in that in case. roll on feb for the mk2 :]
TJontheRoad
Maybe in Global > MIDI we could add an "MPE Mode" for the "Global Channel" setting?


Yes, that would be better than the current Performance mode implementation. I'd guess you'd need to also add controller X/Y/Z source routings somewhere too?
Strider
Yes can't wait for my MK2 !
Xariylebrycean
If possible, it would be nice to be able to rout the knob CC functions to more than one channel per knob. That way, I can build different sets of percussion parts, effect/pan/route them independently, and still fade them in all as one ‘drum machine’.

Or. Just completely mutate the entire song with one twist!
DX100
Ability to change which operator has the feedback routed to it, rather than it always being [1] ?
Soarer
I'm considering preordering the EFM MKII and I have some suggestions based on my limited understanding so far.

Being able to layer sounds in one patch is a fantastic feature but I really want to have a stereo spread or unison without having to setup and edit each single layer just to get this. So please - make a stereo spread/unison mode for each layer for making huge and wide patches. This is my main feature request and something I want to use a lot in my sounds and music.

I understand there's no sync of delay times, right? I really wonder why you haven't made that from the start. That means I won't be able to use delay at all since my electronic music is very beat oriented. So please: Synced delay times.
KODAMO
Layering sounds to get a wide unison doesn't require editing each sound. Each layer has tune/transpose/pan and other attributes that you can change in literally 1 click, so creating this kind of effect is very quick and easy.

About synced delays, we're still working on that.

If possible, it would be nice to be able to rout the knob CC functions to more than one channel per knob. That way, I can build different sets of percussion parts, effect/pan/route them independently, and still fade them in all as one ‘drum machine’.


Should be possible, thank you for that suggestion

Ability to change which operator has the feedback routed to it, rather than it always being [1] ?


Not possible

Maybe in Global > MIDI we could add an "MPE Mode" for the "Global Channel" setting?


Yes!

I'd guess you'd need to also add controller X/Y/Z source routings somewhere too?


That should be done directly in the modulation matrix of the voices (selecting which CC affects which parameter)
DX100
Would there be a way to have an option of only using preset frequency values of certain DX's ?
For instance I think the DX100 [obviously Im a fan] has really interesting selections of frequencies which when you combine with all the other operators will lead you to a load of sounds you probably wouldn't ever discover?
Im attaching the DX100 chart out of the manual.
Soarer
Layering sounds to get a wide unison doesn't require editing each sound. Each layer has tune/transpose/pan and other attributes that you can change in literally 1 click, so creating this kind of effect is very quick and easy.


Right but if you want to then change your sound you will have to change each other layer with the same sound too. Maybe easy but I think I would still really like to have classic unison spread.
I’ll be ordering soon :)
Soarer
Now if you can/could edit the same parameter on all selected layers, that would be a great solution and a very very interesting feature. A bit like the “control all” on the Digitone. Would be so cool for live performances especially if the layers are a bit different.
So feature request: Change same parameters on multiple layers.
ZeroChief
Not an EssenceFM owner (yet), but I’d like to see a tape delay effect added. Something gritty and vaguely “analog” sounding.
Kopplog
Posted on 2020-12-22, 11:47 AM
Now if you can/could edit the same parameter on all selected layers, that would be a great solution and a very very interesting...

That sounds intriguing!
In my experience so far, I used the EFM in terms of live-action only pre-edited. To increase it's capabilities for playing live would be - for sure - something wishful
KODAMO
If you have totally different voices (layers) using different algorithms, changing a common parameter (eg. OP1 volume) would mostly create unpredictable results. Is that what you're looking for?
Soarer
Yes that is what I am looking for but only for selected layers if possible. This suggestions is in connection to my post about unison. Again it is based on my present understanding of the EFM which I do not own yet. Since there is no unison or stereo spread feature (operator wise, not fx) you have to first create/load your patch. Then you have to copy and paste that sound to say, 3 other layers and pan them separately and of course detune each of them a bit in order for them to differ from each other. Fine, done. Now you have a unison sound but if you want to change the filter (or another parameter) in your unison patch you'll have to do that for each of the four layers which is pretty tedious and not something you'll want to do in a live performance I think.

So I'm suggesting that it would be very helpful if you could change the filter (or whatever parameter) for all 4 layers simultaneously. Of course if there was a unison feature you could simply just change the filter in your single layer patch and all voices would change too, as unison usually works.

But if we go on with my suggestion about simultaneous multiple layer parameter change then that could as you mentioned lead to unexpected or really interesting results. I do this all the time with the Digitone where I change the Harmony parameter or operator level of all 4 track sounds simultaneously which causes a very interesting and often great sounding timber change, even if you have synth, bass, lead and drums on the 4 tracks.
Also there are numerous utility purposes possible with this since you can easily make each layer different but also set some of the same parameter values for all of them.

Just a suggestion of course but I can see myself getting annoyed whenever I just want to change a few parameters to my existing wide unison sound and then have to change that parameter on all other layers too. Unison mode would also do of course :D
Makes sense now?
KODAMO
On the EssenceFM it already works like the Unison system you describe because layers aren't copies of the actual voice they play. They're references to them. So if you need to change the filter, the algorithm or any other FM parameter, you have edit the sound only once no matter how many layers of that voice you have.
Soarer
Ok that sounds great! Not sure I completely follow. Maybe I have some confusion about patch, layer and voice.
So in order to create your unison sound you would duplicate your voice to other voice layer slots, then offset pan and pitch and have them play simultaneously? But how do you then change the filter or operator of all voices? At the patch level or?
It seemed to me like you can have different algorithms and settings within each voice layer or is that no so?
Please explain this clearly.
KODAMO
Added to the upcoming firmware: double-tap to mute/unmute operators.

Would there be a way to have an option of only using preset frequency values of certain DX's ?
For instance I think the DX100 [obviously Im a fan] has really interesting selections of frequencies which when you combine with all the other operators will lead you to a load of sounds you probably wouldn't ever discover?
Im attaching the DX100 chart out of the manual.

This is fascinating, we'll check that. Not easy to integrate well within the UI though.
DX100
Ah great news with the double tap operator mute!

Yes with the preset frequencies, looking at the ui, maybe just a check button like the 'FIXED' button
but one that says DX100.
Then if that button is checked the multiplier changes to 'Coarse Frequency' instead and quantises to those DX100 table frequencies
or 2 checkboxes, another could be DX7, where the course frequencies are not quantised.
Probably quite a few ways to do it.
Those DX100 frequencies are fascinating yes and lead you to make different sounds.
Kopplog
IMHO, the ModMatrix is not ideal:
Will I program a tip-top setup for my Linnstrument I cannot copy/paste the whole group of edited parameters for another voice. Well, that would be nice!
Then, do I want to use same voices for the Seaboard some saving/loading preset management would be pointful to regather old modulator-designs...
Kopplog
No one?
Xariylebrycean
Any eta on when we can expect the update? I’m very eager to have that high pass filter option, above all else.
Xariylebrycean
I just realized that the wet/dry balance on the filter doesn’t seem to be available as a destination in the mod matrix. Any chance that could be added?
KODAMO
Filter dry/wet is already available in 4.1. New firmware is ready and will be released this evening with the newsletter ;)
Kopplog
OMG, this is exciting!!!!
Feel like a child before CHRISTMAS CHEER
KODAMO
V4.3 Available in Support > Firmwares

Any feedback is appreciated!
Xariylebrycean
Hi guys, just loaded the update and it does seem amazing. I have already come across a bug though...

This is when playing around with the algorithm modulation feature, there’s kind of two sides to the problem.

Firstly, obviously changing the algorithm can have drastic results that you don’t necessarily want to keep. But if you go to recall the saved version, it actually just brings the voice up with whatever algorithm you last landed on by modulating, so you can’t actually get the saved voice back this way.

But then secondly, if you try to get back to your previous voice settings with undo instead, the entire synth basically locks up and stops responding. One of the operator blocks always seems to fly to the upper left of the screen whenever this happens.

Fortunately if you restart it seems to revert everything back to the last saved state, so not a total catastrophe, but should probably be fixed.
KODAMO
Thank you for the very quick feedback, we decided to fix it immediately. It's now named "v4.3b" and playing with any random algorithm should work well, feel free to install that updated version.
TJontheRoad
A tremendous update! Thank you.
TJontheRoad
Question please; In the new MPE mode, how are the X/Y/Z axis assigned? X is pitch? Z is aftertouch? Y is ??? Can these be added into the mod matrix sources in the next update?
Patate le mage
Thank you for this update.
Xariylebrycean
With the new algorithm modulation, is there any way to have the ‘root’ value of the offset indicate your original custom algorithm on the voice? For example if I’m using a knob as the source, is there any way to have it still set to my original setting on the voice before I start twisting the knob? It’s looking to me like the answer is probably no, but thought it would be worth while to ask in case.
KODAMO
Question please; In the new MPE mode, how are the X/Y/Z axis assigned? X is pitch? Z is aftertouch? Y is ??? Can these be added into the mod matrix sources in the next update?


I'm not aware of special MIDI messages for X/Y/Z, they are probably standard CC that can already be used in the mod matrix, you just need to know which CC they are (using the CCStatus page in Global > MIDI may be really helpful)

a little question : i don't find how to have a random LFO.


The feature is simply about having a dedicated checkbox to randomize the LFO when you press the Randomize button ("Base" tab of the voice editor). If you want an LFO that has a random shape, select the Random waveform for it (waveform #11 Noise) then set the speed to a very low value.

With the new algorithm modulation, is there any way to have the ‘root’ value of the offset indicate your original custom algorithm on the voice? For example if I’m using a knob as the source, is there any way to have it still set to my original setting on the voice before I start twisting the knob? It’s looking to me like the answer is probably no, but thought it would be worth while to ask in case.


It's not currently possible. Could be added in the future though
Soarer
I was a little disappointed to find that the EFM with its 16 parts multi timbrality and hundreds of voices only has 2 global effects. I find that very limiting since reverb and delay are so essential to most synth sounds and so it’s not easy to use other effects...
Can we have at least one more effect please? Or maybe 2 effects for part 1-8 and a separate pair for 9-16 (i.e. 4 global effects)?
Let me know if I’m missing something.
KODAMO
Effects are not the main focus of the EssenceFM, you're right that in Performance mode having only two of them isn't much.

We may improve that, but in the meantime here are some tips to simulate effects directly in your sounds:

- Two or more detuned layers will do a chorus
- Duplicate a layer with different volumes to create a delay in the Voice Sequencer (which can be also sync'd to midi clock)
- Envelopes can create a simple two-reflection delay (by creating a stair-shaped envelope)
- A bitcrusher-like effect can be done by using an operator with low volume and high frequency, above (modulating) other operators
- Ring modulator is the same as using an LFO modulating the amplitude of the sound (can be done with envelope loops too, if you want to use the LFO for other purposes)

Then you can use the two global effects for things that cannot be done in other ways like the Reverb, Shimmer and Distortion.
Soarer
Very good Kodamo - thanks for being honest about that. Actually just what I needed to hear - shifting my ideas about how to use the EFM. Sounds like your advanced layering system, the voice sequencer and looping envelopes can make up for it.
Xariylebrycean
Hi again, seems like I’ve found another bug.
I’ve been using the essence hard ever since the new firmware release, but this only started occurring today. It doesn’t happen every time, but quite frequently now when I hit the undo button while editing a voice, the entire synth stops making sound altogether. All patches in the performance are affected. It does start working properly again after a restart. Like I say, doesn’t happen every time so I’ll get comfortable working on something, then suddenly it’s all gone. I haven’t been able to pin down what could be different about the times when it fails.
Xariylebrycean
Still haven’t entirely pinned it down because it still doesn’t always fail when I test this, but it seems to always happen when I’m undoing a change related to the main 3 filter parameters: dry/wet, resonance, or LP/HP.
KODAMO
Are you using envelope loops on filters ? We found that using very short loops with high resonance can make the filter crazy loud which then mutes the EssenceFM completely. After that you either have to let the filter rest for 1/2 minutes then switch between modes (Perf, Patch, Voice) to get sound again, or simply restart the synth.
If that's the problem, we'll find a fix for it. If it's not, we'll keep investigating (any additional info you share is welcome, thank you for reporting that)
KODAMO
The firmware was updated again (to v4.3d) to improve it after feedback from users. We were really ambitious with the new filter and MPE mode, we hope it'll improve your overall experience with the EssenceFM !
hwk
just a minor quirk: the firmware is at 4.3d, while the usermanual references firmware 4.2 (which never went public).
i know its pedantic, but hey, i am from germany :-)
KODAMO
Yes user manual revisions can lag a bit behind actual firmware releases, as they require quite a bit of work to update. They'll catch up eventually!
Knights Who Say Neve
Hi, would it be possible to allow reception of Midi Tuning Standard Real Time Tuning Messages?

Receiving tuning messages create some issues, tuning isn't handled at the MIDI Channel level, it's a global tuning table used by voices. If we manage to solve that by creating temporary tunings for each MIDI channel then a way to "reset" it is also needed to make it linked to the tuning table again.


Loading a new performance should be sufficient for a tuning reset.

Also, I think you would only need one temporary tuning table, not 16. It would copy the global tuning table when the performance is loaded (there's the reset), and MTS messages would alter the temporary table. MTS real-time isn't channelized so it would have to work this way.

If you were to implement this, and wanted to be extra super nice, you could add a option on the tuning page to save the current state of the temporary tuning table as a new user scale - just pop up a dialogue when selected so the new tuning can be named :-)


Just wanted to add, that accepting MTS realtime tuning messages to alter the current tuning preset would allow tuning dumps directly from the Cirklon and from the Tubbutec Microtune - both of these send MTS single note tuning messages. It would be a lot less of a flow killer to be able to dump in a tuning from the Microtune then to have to design it on the Essence - no way would I stop to do that in the heat of the moment.

Having it alter just one tuning table is not a big deal - the limitation is that all multi-timberal parts would have the same tuning. But that's a reasonable limitation, I think.
Soarer
Not easily doable, I know but I could really use another LFO. Having multiple destinations of one LFO doesn't really help since it's always the same speed and shape.

I have run into this bug about 4 times now with my MKII: At times, after pressing undo 2-5 times, the sound disappears completely and I have to switch off the unit.
KODAMO
@Soarer Can you precisely describe the problem you encounter ? Does it happen only on some voices, or while editing a specific parameter ? Is there a loud noise before the sound disappears?
As a test, please wait about 2 minutes instead of restarting the EssenceFM the next time the "bug" happens, to see if the sound comes back by itself.

For more LFOs you can try using envelope loops instead. OP's pitch/volume envelopes for vibrato/tremolo, or you can also set an OP's volume to zero then use its envelopes as sources in the modulation matrix
Soarer
The sound did actually come back one of the times. I the went to the global settings so I thought that fixed it but the next time it happened I did the same but the sound did not come back. After about four minutes I switched it off.
KODAMO
Ok, we need to find when does this happen. We have no other users reporting that so it may be triggered in very specific conditions.
Soarer
I’ll be attentive about details and report back onward.
Kopplog
Hi Kodamo,
for all future development/firmware-updates/bugfixing to come -
Maybe you would want to implement some kind of an "export machine-setting-status for development" feature aside refining your export/import issues your about to fix anyway soon?
The idea is, that you, as the developer may virtually recreate his machine-settings by simply asking the customer-in-urge for an exported "key"?
It would make it easier and faster for all fixes to come...
Soarer
The undo bug happened again and the sound didn't come back. Tried to change settings in Global output etc. but it didn't work. Turned it off.
KODAMO
We found the issue, fix is incoming. It happens sometimes when using Undo while no operator is selected.
KODAMO
Firmware is available
We'd greatly appreciate any feedback, it should fix your issues @Soarer
Soarer
Sounds fantastic Kodamo :) I’ll check when I get home.

About the LFO I have some suggestions.
The pitch envelope is great but a sine shape is not possible and you have to copy/paste it to all carriers.
Maybe a full featured LFO is not necessary. Some synths have a dedicated LFO sine for vibrato, that would maybe be simple to make.
Also a random value generator (for each note event) would be great as a mod matrix source.
And here’s a very important one I think: an alternating value generator/LFO as mod source for pan spread. It would also be great to have this in the pan env section. Here’s a description from the OB-6 manual:

“Pan Spread pans audio in the stereo field individually per voice. Set to 0, all voices are panned to the center. As you turn the pan spread knob up, the audio in each voice is gradually moved away from the center by greater amounts. Every other voice goes in a different direction, left or right. This creates a broader stereo field while playing..”

If already possible please tell me how but it would be great if it could be done without using the LFO. I really hope you will grant us this one as it will make even single voices sound wide when playing chords.

Best
KODAMO
There is already a random number generator for each note event, it's called RNG in the modulation sources. You can assign it to Pan for example, to make random panning like the Pan Spread feature you describe.
To get some additional modulation LFO without having to use each carrier's pitch envelope, you can set an operator's volume to zero and use its envelopes as sources in the mod matrix, then you only have 5 operators left but usually not a problem since you have the infinite layering ability in Patches
Petajaja
I usually use a spare operator for vibrato, advantage to that is you can then modulate that operator too for more complex vibrato effects.

There's so many voices on this thing, you can afford to be wasteful with them :)
Soarer
Great I’ll try the RNG.
The pan spread I mentioned is not random. It is alternating the pan equally left and right. It would be really useful.
Soarer
And here’s the description of this feature (mod source) in Omnisphere:
“Alternate – Every keystroke alternates between positive and negative values (polyphonic)”
Soarer
"USB detection: Cannot find any drive"
I tried several times with 2 different Sandisk USB drives (Format: Mac OS Extended Journaled) and no luck. Why is that and what do I do?
KODAMO
You need to format your drive to FAT32 or exFAT, proprietary Apple formats aren't supported. Some searches on the web seems to indicate that it's possible to do that with the built-in formatting tool
Soarer
Ok I got it done by formatting my drive. But I do find that a pretty tedious way of updating. Why are Mac users's USB drives not supported? Maybe find a better way of updating the firmware like connecting the unit to a computer via USB.

So I did a lot of undos and it seems to work fine now. Thanks for the fix.
Failed Muso
I'm not sure what the issue is here because a Mac will read FAT32 and exFAT natively and most USB drives come formatted in FAT32. I bought a Sandisk Ultra Fit 64GB USB drive for £9 GBP and had no need to format it at all. I just connected it to my Mac, copied the files I wanted over to it and then popped it into my EFM where I was able to import everything, including native EFM patches and TX816 voices, as well as perform a F/W update and system backup.
KODAMO
It was only realistic to support FAT since it's very common, unlike the more specific/proprietary formats (NTFS for Windows, Extended Journaled for Mac).
There are also very high license fees for these formats, that's why most devices outside the computer world only support FAT and derivatives.
Soarer
I see. That's fine then. I didn't know that I can use these formats just as well with Macs so I'll keep this format then.
On your download page it just said "put the file on a USB drive" which I did so maybe you can include this info for new users like me :)
Soarer
Sorry for my complaining here earlier. I actually really like this way of upgrading now and particularly the very convenient way of backing up everything. Feels very good to always have full backups on a tiny USB dongle.

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