SOMA Pulsar-23 Screw Analogue Drum Machine (Pink)

Semi-modular drum machine

CAP2: 0 £1,499.00
£1,249.17 ex VAT
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At a glance

  • Stainless steel screws replace expensive custom turrets
  • Semi-modular design for immediate use without patching
  • Unique patching method using alligator clips and binding posts
  • Four distinct voices (Bass Drum, Bass, Snare Drum, High Hat)
  • Dedicated Attack and Decay parameters for each voice
  • FX controls for the DSP Reverb and Delay section
  • Distortion module on the master
  • Unique tape loop-inspired sequencing approach
  • Robust MIDI integration with MIDI to CV binding posts
  • SHAOS module for pseudo-random voltage generation
  • Various utilities including attenuators and VCA
  • Optional Soft case

The Soma Pulsar-23 Screw Analogue Drum Machine (Pink) is a cost-effective alternative to the Pulsar Turret, utilising stainless steel screws instead of expensive custom turrets to deliver the same functionality at a lower price. It is important to note that the soft case is optional and not included as standard equipment, further reducing the base price.

The Soma Pulsar-23 reimagines analogue drum machines with an innovative, semi-modular design that can be used immediately without patching. Its extensive interconnectivity capabilities unveil a realm of sonic and rhythmic experimentation.

Flourish of Connectivity

The Pulsar-23 introduces a unique method of patching connections, using alligator clips and binding posts instead of conventional ⅛" and ¼" cables. This system offers unparalleled flexibility, allowing multiple cables to connect to the same post and encouraging tactile interactions. Many binding posts serve as inputs and outputs, enabling inputs to blend multiple signals automatically. This allows simultaneous clock and modulation signals to create intricate, interconnected relationships, aptly termed "Organismic" by the designer.

Powerful Voicings

The Pulsar-23 encompasses four distinct voices:

  • BD (Bass Drum): This module combines pitch and Tune controls with a Drive unit for shaping waveforms, allowing a range of sounds from subtle to gritty industrial tones.
  • Bass: This instrument features a comprehensive subtractive mono synth section with waveform selection and a low-pass filter and can transform into an additional percussion instrument.
  • SD (Snare Drum): This module is tailored for snare drums and clap applications. It offers a band-pass filter, clap control, and traditional analogue snare adjustments.
  • HHT (High Hat): This module uses white noise as its primary sound source and a high-pass filter to control tonality.

Each voice has dedicated Attack and Decay parameters with independent binding posts for modulation between voices. FX controls allow for the assignment of each voice to the DSP Reverb and Delay section. Further sound-shaping capabilities are provided by a distortion module on the master, with control over Drive intensity and a Mix knob for dry signal selection. The DSP Delay and Reverb section adds depth and space, offering various delay options and a hall-based reverb. These effects can be used independently or in series, with numerous modulation controls via the binding posts.

Innovative Sequencer

The Pulsar-23 introduces a novel approach to sequencing, departing from the conventional step sequencer in favour of a tape loop-inspired method. This innovative approach allows users to record sound events effortlessly, reacting to both start time and length. These loops offer an exceptionally high resolution, adding a human touch to compositions. Each voice features its rhythmic quantiser to synchronise with a chosen grid. An internal memory stores four banks of four sequences for easy recall. Robust MIDI integration empowers users to assign MIDI messages to drum parameters through the Learn function or one of the four MIDI to CV binding posts. The Bass voice can be entirely controlled via MIDI, enabling external keyboard playability with precise pitch tracking across five octaves.

External Clocking and SHAOS

External clocking is achievable through MIDI and an analogue clock for seamless synchronisation with external devices. Internal and external clocks can be divided into seven distinctive clock divisions, offering versatile triggers for inputs, LFO synchronisation, and more. Patching clock divisions between themselves creates unique swing patterns, and modulation of clock sync can be achieved by controlling the LFO frequency with an external CV.

The SHAOS module introduces an additional layer of unpredictability. It harnesses a pseudo-random voltage generator powered by shift registers and a sample and hold circuit, producing sequences of stepped voltages. SHAOS offers three modes: 1-bit mode with two states, 2-bit mode with four states, and 3-bit mode with eight states. Users can select the length of the pseudo-random sequencer from 63, 16, or 217 modes.

Utilities and Adaptability

The Pulsar-23 offers an array of utilities typically found in traditional modular systems, including four attenuators for fine-tuning parameters. The VCA accepts both audio and CV signals, allowing for dynamic variation. Eight 1/8" to binding post adapters and six 1/4" to binding posts facilitate seamless bidirectional communication with modular systems. Supplementing these utilities are CV-controllable inverters, gate-controlled electronic switches, triggered impulse generators, and an abundance of features waiting to be uncovered and explored within this remarkable machine.

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