Doepfer A-172 Max / Min

The Max / Min is a much underrated audio tool.

Did you even know it? You possibly regarded it as some kind of freaky elektronic calculator (maybe useful for some kind of weird modulation stuff). In fact, it is a very interesting waveshaper. Much like a clipper, you can feed an audio source (e.g. a sawtooth from a VCO) and a constant voltage in two of its four inputs – and you will have clipping signals at both “max” and “min” outputs.

You may, however, use two or more audio sources as input signals – this little unit will create two different output signals with combined waveforms: one output will only use the higher, the other one only the lower parts of both waves. And these parts will change dynamically, if your audio sources are slightly detuned.

Technical details can be found on Doepfer’s homepage:

For my little audio example, I’m using two A-110 VCOs: one with its sawtooth, the other with its pulse output, both VCOs are sent directly into the Max / Min. The two “Max” and “Min” outputs of the A-172 are spread left and right in stereo. No filters, no VCA. I’m starting with 100% pulse, and decrease pulsewidth slowly by hand. Then I start detuning the two VCOs a little. Here we go:

Have fun,