Among a boatload of other Erica Synth modules showcased at Superbooth 2019, we shouldn’t overlook the Black Input. It’s a preamp, envelope follower and pitch tracker that lets you control your Eurorack system with other instruments or your voice. Neat!
Erica Synths Black Input is sort of like a Korg MS20’s External Signal Processor for Eurorack. You can feed any monophonic signal to its balanced XLR, 1/4” or 1/8” input. The module then creates envelope, gate, trigger, and pitch CV signals based on the audio that you feed it. The idea is that you can play your modular synth with another acoustic instrument or your voice, or use the audio input to control whatever you like in your system.
Preamp and envelope follower
The Black Input features an input preamp with adjustable gain and a level meter. Then, there’s an envelope follower with adjustable threshold and rate. It takes the volume of the input signal and makes it available as a control voltage via the envelope output. You also get gate and trigger outputs, so you can use the input to drive all sorts of other events within your rack.
Erica Synths is especially proud of the accuracy of the Black Input’s pitch tracker. It converts the pitch of the incoming audio signal to a control voltage. It can operate in three modes and the makers say that the latency is very low. The pitch tracker has two outputs: One produces a continuous control voltage, while the other delivers a quantized CV that is locked to semitones.
If you’re into experimenting with alternative control sources for your Eurorack, the Erica Synths Black Input gives you some very interesting options.