Eurorack noobie

I was wondering if there is a place (website) I can go to understand how to build my first portable (battery operated if needed) eurorack, which modules to get, best options for my money, etc. I would like to have synth, sequencer, sampler, drum machine… all I can get for like $3k, while I wait for my vector synth!

PS: any ideas :bulb: suggestions with brands and models will be appreciated


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Thanks I’m familiar with this site, in fact I have an account and tries to build a rack, the problem is, it won’t guide you as I need, like noobie that knows what I want, but don’t know where to get and which models


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Great site, thanks!

jokes aside, you honestly are gonna get 10,000 opinions, and the only one that’s right is what modules inspire you. watch youtube and write down the modules you’re into. then build a rack and THEN show people (us) the rack, and we will point out any missing stuff.

it’s much easier than asking like this. it’s also extremely genre specific, i couldn’t tell you what to buy bc i don’t know your genre. do you want to interface with elektron gear, etc. there’s many variables. make noise is a good brand to start with. it was my first love.


Eurorack is an expanding universe… you’ll have thousand different advices.
I can tell you only one thing: don’t start with a big and complete system. Buy first few essential modules (vco, mixer, vca, filter, lfo, envelope and output), start patching and take your time to understand what you need/like.
It’s a long journey… :slightly_smiling_face::slightly_smiling_face::slightly_smiling_face:

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Decide on which aspect of synthesis and music - melodic, drums; sound design; drones - you want to focus on and go from there: how do you get there and what else do you want to do when you arrive. Don’t just get all the hot modules. Plan small at first: 84/104 HP at most.

Also try out VCV Rack and the Patch and Tweak book.


these questions where asked a lot , the common sense is to try to understand how the basic workflow & patch is made , you do not want to spend a grand on something you don’t understand so here we go
learn with software , don’t try to download all the module there’s already 2500+ .
recently Instruo created vcv versions of their modules and you have to try the audible instruments , it’s exact replicas of the mutable instruments classics.
then the common start is to buy a semi-modular ; mother 32 , 0coast… as they have a lot of basic module and a good selections of sound generator/ modulators and utility modules.
Have fun

Or, alternatively, start with a complete system :slight_smile:
I dont think any advice is going to be right for you. eg I started with a (mostly second hand) Doepfer subtractive mono voice (about 60 hp) and 12u diy case while I was working out what I wanted (before vcvrack was around)…
My only real suggestion is make/buy a larger case than you think you’ll need unless you know exactly what you want… portable gets tricky!

I cant think how you could get everything you want in a portable battery powered case tbh…

If you can diy then a whole load of interesting options and lower cost options are available :slight_smile:

eg this can be battery powered (or dc walwart) and costs about ÂŁ120 including case, psu and modules

image 017-modular_3dcase

Buy a big case, watch Divkid videos on YouTube. 3K isn’t enough.

I think my best advice is to have a specific goal in mind when choosing your modules. The goal for my rack (84hp 7u) is to be able to have two voices + note generation for those voices and some effects for those voices. Not unlike how I use the digitone really, except the workflow is totally different. I personally didn’t find doing drums in eurorack that great, mainly because I think eurorack is good for going very deep and making sounds with lots of different components, where drums are often more of a parallel affair, each one being a bit simpler but there being more of them.

Also I would encourage to envision how you actually will use your modules rather than thinking of all the possible things you can do with them. I bought a few modules because of their number of functions rather than how I felt using them. My favorite modules are the ones that have one core idea and execute it well. The ones I like less (disting and pam’s new workout, though they are both essential) try to do lots of things at once.

Out of curiosity, what made you want to start a Eurorack journey ?

Genuinely curious to know why we see so many people wanting to get on the Eurorack train with very little idea of why they want it in the first place, but ready to spend premium cash on it, this is very odd to me (but to each their own).
Did some well known Youtube guy made another one of these “small modular setup” videos ? More artists posting with Eurorack on social media ? Forums and people talking to each other (word of mouth)? I haven’t the start of a clue as to why people are drawn to modular in this way, and I’m really looking to understand them in this instance.


This only depends on your individual idea, what you want to achieve. Today we have in the modular world so many different options that without a plan or an idea, everybody is lost.

Just some examples of what is avalable:

  • east coast synth modules, which may be used to create “classic subtractive synthesis” and are descendands from ideas created by Bob Moog, ARP, Tom Oberheim, Roland and others …
  • west coast synth moduls, which are inspired by ideas of Don Buchla, Serge and others …
  • weird analogue modules making crazy things, beeing sometimes quite experimental stuff
  • various types of wavetable modules
  • various DSP based modules for creating sound or FX
  • sampling bases modules
  • modules with binary logic to create gates or CV etc, like the Turing Machine, or the “Leibnitz System” of XAOC Devices

As others already pointed out, develop an idea, where you would like to go. Should it be an FX unit, or an instrument, or an experimental tool for sound-design. What genre or style of music is in your mind.

And last but not least … do you like patching cables and not having preset memories?

My guess … first symptoms of GAS :smiley:

I don’t think there’s any coincidence that these threads started popping up the moment Beads was released.


On a side note, I really like the idea of small, well thought out systems.

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I’d buy a Hydrasynth rack first, then figure out what it can’t do in euroland and go from there.

I find it odd that very few people bother with plumbing synths such as their hydrasynth into their modular. All those envelopes, LFO, arps, effects, filters etc can all have eurorack sources and destinations plumbed into them. It’s even a decent USB/MIDI-CV/Gate

Don’t get me wrong, I understand the appeal, but I think videos about them do a disservice to new synthesists by hiding the limitations inherent to those systems, especially when you see people saying they sold all their synths and whatnot just to get into modular, ending up with a overly expensive monosynth and wondering why their music hasn’t gone from meh to yeah just yet. That trade just isn’t a good one to make IMHO, even if I am personally convinced that working within the constraints of gear limitation can become a source of inspiration for a lot of people. Seeing what you can do with just an OP-1 is a good example of that :wink:
So small euro setups => Yes. At the expense of everything else => hopefully not.

I should really just shut up, grabbing a second hand Beads would make me very happy I reckon :slight_smile:


for people who don’t have a clue , cmon you hear in a second it’s about the raw sound, the possibilities and as soond as you see a richard devine video you start questioning yourself "how does he manage to have that sound never happen twice and constantly moving ???.
the thing is you have to start slow because i see a lot of people buying a huge amount of gear just to resold it after. to start with a semi mod is wise , just to see if you’re ok to go with no presets or whatsoever