Author Archives: Rare Waves

Game sound design with Lite2Sound PX

Sound Designer Kyle Fraser of 343 Industries shows some sounds he’s getting with our Lite2Sound PX photodiode amplifier kit.

This is a complete episode of The Sprint. Fast forward to the segment beginning at 8:23 to see Kyle’s demonstration of Lite2Sound PX.

Lite2Sound QB – coming soon

Rare Waves LLC and Eric Archer are developing a new model of our Lite2Sound photodiode amplifiers – the Lite2Sound QB. Many sources of light contain hidden tones and modulated frequencies that can only be heard with a light sensitive receiver. Creative audio producers, field recording enthusiasts, and sound designers are finding that photodiode amplifiers offer a new ‘secret weapon’ to expand their toolbox of sound sources. The video clip shows just a few samples of Lite2Sound QB in action, but we feel that the real magic is field recording in technology-saturated spaces. We will present more examples soon.

L2SQB 001

Reverberant Drone Relaxation

Thirty-one minute ambient relaxation music recorded with the Grendel DC-2e Main Module and a spring reverb effect.

Drone Funk

Synthesizer demo with Grendel DC-2e Drone Commander 2 Eurorack and Grendel RA-9 Grenadier. Two tracks of DC-2e, one track of RA-9, plus a touch of mystery synth. Grendel synthesizers are available from I/O Music Technology, Detroit Modular, Switched On, NoiseBug, Perfect Circuit Audio, Analogue Haven, Noise Kitchen, and SchneidersLaden.

Triple Grendel synth jam

Demonstrating some sounds you can get with the Grendel DC-2e Eurorack voice modules, and the Grendel RA-9 Grenadier. And a third, mystery synth!

Grendel synthesizers are available from I/O Music Technology, Detroit Modular, Switched On, NoiseBug, Perfect Circuit Audio, Analogue Haven, Noise Kitchen, SchneidersLaden.

DC-2e and RA-9

Demoing the Grendel RA-9 Grenadier and DC-2e Drone Commander 2.  A sequenced LFO effect is obtained by patching the Grenadier’s sequencer output to the LFO CV input of DC-2e.  The track was composed with MIDI in Reaper DAW software, using a 4-channel MIDI-to-CV converter to interface the analog intruments.  The analog snare drum and bass drum are new prototype designs in development here at Rare Waves…

Grendel DC-2e Eurorack

In stores now!

This video walks through getting started with the Grendel DC-2e Drone Commander 2, beginning with using the Main Module by itself (0:30). Next, see how to control it from a MIDI keyboard, using the Expander module and a MIDI-CV converter (3:40).

A self-patch that gives additional filter modulation is demonstrated (5:35). After that, one of the MIDI-CV converter’s auxiliary CV outputs is patched in to control DC-2e’s LFO rate with the MIDI mod wheel (7:00).

The next section demonstrates VCF 1’s self-oscillation (8:35), including how to cancel the filter’s self-oscillation so only the dry tone of the VCOs is heard (9:50). Then, VCF 1 is set up as a third oscillator, creating a constant-pitched drone note to accompany melody played on the VCOs (10:50).

Last, some examples of pitch modulation using the MOD knob are shown (11:40), leading to full-on crazy town.

Grendel DC-2e Drone Commander 2 Eurorack

DC2E main and expander b

Grendel DC-2e is now available direct from Rare Waves LLC!  We can only ship to USA addresses at this time.  How to order

Europe/UK: SchneidersLaden has Grendel DC-2e!

Drone Commander 2 prototype

Rare Waves LLC demonstrates a Grendel Drone Commander 2 prototype in Eurorack format.

Drone Commander 2 is a true analog synthesizer with discrete transistor technology. It has 12 knobs for lots of hands on control, and every knob is a push-pull switch for lots of tone modification options.

It retains the original Drone Commander filter, and adds a second independently controlled filter for contrast. The second filter is a smooth and clean 4-pole lowpass filter (-24dB/oct VC-LPF). It has an attack-release envelope generator and serves as a lowpass gate, to control the volume and tone.

The LFO section has been completely revised.. its kind of hard to describe, listen instead (please pardon the noodling)

The optional Expander module can be connected for extensive voltage control. It has 18 patch points including CV/Gate input, Clock in/out, and external audio input. Connecting a MIDI controller and MIDI-CV converter to the Expander gives the Drone Commander 2 its full potential for melodic control, sequencing, and synchronization.

A stand-alone version may be in the works also. More audio at

Drone Commander 2 Prototype + TR808

Grendel Drone Commander 2 Eurorack is in the works.. Now with CV-Gate and Clock inputs! In this recording of the prototype, it is sychronized to MIDI using a Vermona QMI. The Roland TR-808 is running with a Doepfer MSY2 MIDI-SYNC converter. (Dope riddims by Erich Ragsdale)