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DIY Stompboxes => Building your own stompbox => Topic started by: Taylor on July 27, 2011, 03:39:06 PM

Title: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 27, 2011, 03:39:06 PM
Since I've started receiving a few build reports and questions about the Meat Sphere PCB, here's a thread for discussion and posting your builds.

Here's the correct way to orient the rotary switches and pots on the board:
(http://musicpcb.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/MEATSPHERE3-003.jpg)

I will be posting a drill template and some of my own build photos shortly. The PCB fits comfortably in a 1790NS enclosure. I've been having a lot of fun with the analog octave down, into the Meat Sphere for synth sounds.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lwatford on July 27, 2011, 08:21:29 PM
Can't wait to build this one! Nice and neat, without the offboard wiring mess of all the other clones I've seen.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: karter2000 on July 28, 2011, 02:38:33 AM
Is it possible to build in the pedal control of some parameters, plus the external trigger that the original had?  Either way, I'm buying one  ;D.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 28, 2011, 02:51:45 AM
It has the effects loop, yes. I guess to use it as an external trigger (for example, sweep the filter on your bass with a drum machine) you'd want to plug the drum machine into the input and your bass into the return jack.

I couldn't really find info on what the "pedal" (expression) jacks did, but I'm assuming one is a CV connected to the LED side of the optocouplers, so that's easy. Not sure about the other one, but any pot on any pedal can easily be replaced by an expression pedal just by using a switching stereo jack.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: frequencycentral on July 28, 2011, 03:06:48 AM
(http://musicpcb.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/MEATSPHERE3-003.jpg)

Taylor, that is @#$%ing beautiful.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on July 28, 2011, 03:23:53 AM
Two comments

1 do the height of the switches and the pots line up well with the enclosure?
2 do You need to reset the switch collars to only 2 positions for the up/down etc?
Or are you left with redundant throws?

Thanks

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 28, 2011, 05:57:53 AM
Taylor, that is @#$%ing beautiful.

:icon_redface: Thanks Rick, that's very kind!

Two comments

1 do the height of the switches and the pots line up well with the enclosure?
2 do You need to reset the switch collars to only 2 positions for the up/down etc?
Or are you left with redundant throws?


1) yes, they can be soldered to be the same depth/height.

2) Yes, the Alpha/Alps switches come with a set washer with a tab that lets you set each switch for the number of throws you need.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on July 28, 2011, 08:22:22 AM
I couldn't really find info on what the "pedal" (expression) jacks did, but I'm assuming one is a CV connected to the LED side of the optocouplers, so that's easy. Not sure about the other one, but any pot on any pedal can easily be replaced by an expression pedal just by using a switching stereo jack.

From the Meatball user manual:
Quote
Pedal1 (see WARNING!! )
Connect the output of a passive (i.e. non-powered,
battery or otherwise) volume pedal (e.g. Boss FV5O or
FV60) to this socket to control the decay time. PLEASE
NOTE: It acts in series i.e. it adds extra decay time to
whatever is dialled in on the Decay pot. With the pot set
at minimum, the range of the pedal will approximate the
normal travel of the pot. With the decay pot at maximum,
the pedal will provide extra long decay times.
Pedal2 (see WARNING!! )
Connect the output of a passive volume pedal to control
the intensity. PLEASE NOTE: Unlike Pedal 1 this works in
parallel with the pot which means that the available range
is limited. The most noticeable effects here will be with the
Intensity pot set to lower values.
WARNING !! The two pedal Input jacks above
are to be used only in the manner described.
Any volume pedal must only be connected to a
SINGLE pedal jack.
DO NOT CONNECT ANYTHING ELSE TO THE
PEDAL JACKS (EG. INSTRUMENTS, AMPS
ETC.) AS THIS COULD RESULT IN PERMANENT
DAMAGE.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on July 28, 2011, 10:14:48 AM
Awesome thanks Taylor.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MarcoMike on July 28, 2011, 01:56:51 PM
 >:( now I wish I didn't have one already!!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 28, 2011, 02:49:42 PM
I couldn't really find info on what the "pedal" (expression) jacks did, but I'm assuming one is a CV connected to the LED side of the optocouplers, so that's easy. Not sure about the other one, but any pot on any pedal can easily be replaced by an expression pedal just by using a switching stereo jack.

From the Meatball user manual:
Quote
Pedal1 (see WARNING!! )
Connect the output of a passive (i.e. non-powered,
battery or otherwise) volume pedal (e.g. Boss FV5O or
FV60) to this socket to control the decay time. PLEASE
NOTE: It acts in series i.e. it adds extra decay time to
whatever is dialled in on the Decay pot. With the pot set
at minimum, the range of the pedal will approximate the
normal travel of the pot. With the decay pot at maximum,
the pedal will provide extra long decay times.
Pedal2 (see WARNING!! )
Connect the output of a passive volume pedal to control
the intensity. PLEASE NOTE: Unlike Pedal 1 this works in
parallel with the pot which means that the available range
is limited. The most noticeable effects here will be with the
Intensity pot set to lower values.
WARNING !! The two pedal Input jacks above
are to be used only in the manner described.
Any volume pedal must only be connected to a
SINGLE pedal jack.
DO NOT CONNECT ANYTHING ELSE TO THE
PEDAL JACKS (EG. INSTRUMENTS, AMPS
ETC.) AS THIS COULD RESULT IN PERMANENT
DAMAGE.

Thanks for that Vince. That pretty well explains how to add these controls. Also nice that you can use a volume pedal and a mono cable instead of having to use a dedicated expression pedal wired as a divider. However, as it notes, doing it this way will have limited range and will depend entirely on the type of volume pedal (ie low Z versus high Z Ernie ball pedals).
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lwatford on July 28, 2011, 08:06:47 PM
should you use the pc mounted pots with the long legs?

Taylor, that is @#$%ing beautiful.

:icon_redface: Thanks Rick, that's very kind!

Two comments

1 do the height of the switches and the pots line up well with the enclosure?
2 do You need to reset the switch collars to only 2 positions for the up/down etc?
Or are you left with redundant throws?


1) yes, they can be soldered to be the same depth/height.

2) Yes, the Alpha/Alps switches come with a set washer with a tab that lets you set each switch for the number of throws you need.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 28, 2011, 08:17:06 PM
No, I used the regular PC mount pins for that board in the photo.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: GodSaveMetal on July 29, 2011, 12:25:16 PM
Since I've started receiving a few build reports and questions about the Meat Sphere PCB, here's a thread for discussion and posting your builds.

Here's the correct way to orient the rotary switches and pots on the board:
(http://musicpcb.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/MEATSPHERE3-003.jpg)

I will be posting a drill template and some of my own build photos shortly. The PCB fits comfortably in a 1790NS enclosure. I've been having a lot of fun with the analog octave down, into the Meat Sphere for synth sounds.


Mr. Taylor congrats it's an incredible and great work I love that, pots and selectors on board  :-*  Thanks for it I'm tuned in this please your layout and PCB for this; your awesome man!!!!!!!! :icon_mrgreen: :icon_mrgreen:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: gginther on August 02, 2011, 10:35:40 AM
Fantastic, I have been waiting for this one!! Looking forward to a demo clip  :icon_biggrin:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 03, 2011, 02:35:05 PM
Hey Taylor, can you post the drill template?
I have just received the enclosure that I have bought for the Meat Sphere and I can't wait to start that project!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 03, 2011, 04:14:49 PM
Yes, I'll try to draw it up today. My calipers seem to be dying so it might be tricky....
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 03, 2011, 04:23:58 PM
I don't want to put pressure on you, I thought that you had already drawn it. If you don't have the time I could probably do it myself when I will receive the board.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: defaced on August 03, 2011, 10:07:15 PM
If you can do a grid in your PCB software, you can pull the dims from that. 

BTW, good work.  I'll be buying this when I buy the Christine PCB. 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 09, 2011, 02:58:46 PM
I have received my pcb today and I have started populating it but I have a question about the rotary switches. Can I put any of the middle pins (A, B,C) in any of the holes or does it matter which one goes where? I'm pretty sure it doesn't make any difference but I don't want to take the chance of soldering them the wrong way.

I have made a drilling template that I will post by the end of the day for anyone who may need one.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 09, 2011, 04:01:28 PM
Right, doesn't matter. But you need to be sure to use the enclosed plastic type. The metal rotary switches will fit physically but will mess everything up because they're connected differently.

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 09, 2011, 04:03:53 PM
Thanks Taylor. I have bought the right ones from Smallbear.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 09, 2011, 05:03:48 PM
I have another question, this time about the vactrols. The led (the side with the square leads) should be soldered on the side where there is a "+" on the pcb, but should the marking on the vactrols be visible when soldered in place or should it be against the pcb?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 09, 2011, 05:19:43 PM
Which vactrol are you using? It will depend on the part, but the datasheet for whatever you're using will show the proper orientation.

I normally use NSL-32s, and these have a dot showing the negative LED lead. If you look at the datasheet for the Vactrols, there is a drawing showing that there's an angled corner indicating the cathode (negative) lead.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 10, 2011, 11:50:25 AM
Taylor,

Beautiful work! I ordered the PCB from you today and just put in a parts order from small bear as well. I've been waiting for this baby a long time now. I see a future permanent spot on the pedal board. Just under $100 for all of the parts too, awesome deal!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 10, 2011, 03:58:24 PM
I have done a drilling template. It can be downloaded here: http://www.box.net/shared/kiekb8vs26p8rya9qexr (http://www.box.net/shared/kiekb8vs26p8rya9qexr)

1. When you print it, make sure that "page scaling" is set to "none".
2. It's easier to mount the switches and pots on the enclosure before soldering them to the pcb. If you try to solder everything on the pcb before mounting them on the enclosure it might be harder to make each components fit in their holes.
3. The rotary switches are a bit taller than the legs of the pots so you will need to bend them a little bit to make them long enough.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 10, 2011, 08:06:33 PM
Thanks for the template! That'll help a bunch. Now let's see some custom artwork!

(http://www.rankopedia.com/CandidatePix/62271.gif)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bassesofdeath on August 11, 2011, 11:06:52 AM
Has anyone tried using MC4558CP1 op amps? I have a box full of these and wanted to use them all.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 11, 2011, 04:58:40 PM
Has anyone tried using MC4558CP1 op amps? I have a box full of these and wanted to use them all.


Standard dual op amps won't work on this apparently.

On another note, anyone planning on implementing Expression pedal control on this like the original?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 11, 2011, 05:13:40 PM
I want to implement the expression pedal control but I'm not sure yet how to do it.
There is a wiring layout on this website http://www.pisotones.com/Meatball/psst/meatball-psst.html (http://www.pisotones.com/Meatball/psst/meatball-psst.html) but it's in spanish and it use a jack that have 8 lugs and I don't really understand what is going on.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MarcoMike on August 12, 2011, 06:52:40 AM
8 lugs are because those are switched jacks. imagine the upper and lower rows of lugs as a separate DPDT, actuated by the jack, when inserted.
anyway, I always thought decay and intensity were not worth being controlled by an expression pedal.
what I did is wiring the expression pedal as a CV source: +V on the hot lug, ground on the third and CV on the wiper. this way you have a +9V - 0V cv out of your expression pedal. when the exp pedal is connected, its CV substitutes the output of the 1458, just before the intensity pot (which is now used to limit the V applied to the vactrols)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 12, 2011, 08:47:18 AM
I understand why Pedal1 (decay) would need this kind of jack but it looks to me that Pedal 2 (Intensity ) only needs a mono jack isolated from the enclosure, right?
But anyway I will probably wire it like you said. Just to make sure that I understand: I need to connect 9v to the tip, CV on the ring and ground on the sleeve. Is that it? By the way, I never used an expression pedal so I'm not really sure about how they work.
And also, where is the CV on the pcb (or on the schematic)?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 12, 2011, 04:02:21 PM
The CV is coming out of the pot, not from the board.

So, assuming a Moog type expression pedal, 9v goes to the jack ring, ground to the sleeve, and the divided voltage (CV) comes from the tip and goes where the output of the envelope section was.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MarcoMike on August 12, 2011, 04:16:48 PM
few more details came into my mind:
as the CV "user" is, say, low impedence, you will find that the exp pedal pot value makes the difference: too high resistance will end up in a very poor linearity. I ended up buffering the CV with an opamp, as I 1/2 available (the other one is for phase inversion on LP)
just pay attention and don't fry the vactrols!! do all your tests with a series resistor from expr to effect or the intensity pot at min, if you follow the wiring I suggested.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 13, 2011, 09:40:20 AM
The CV is coming out of the pot, not from the board.
What I wanted to ask is where the CV as to go on the board?

the divided voltage (CV) comes from the tip and goes where the output of the envelope section was.
This is precisely what I want to know. Where is the output of the envelope section?  Where should I solder the CV from the jack to the board?

Sorry for all those silly questions but I'm not familiar yet with the way that this kind of effect works.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 13, 2011, 03:26:18 PM
I'll go ahead and draw up a diagram as I'm sure others want to add this too. Should have it this evening.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ryanuk on August 13, 2011, 04:13:00 PM
Hi

Appreciate that the PCB is available to buy , but are there transfer files available for the top/bottom layers for DIY PCB builders?

RyUK
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 13, 2011, 04:23:38 PM
No, this PCB is not designed for home etching and would be nearly impossible to etch even with very good resolution equipment at home.

However, if you Google search, some people have done layouts for this that are meant for home etching.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: GodSaveMetal on August 13, 2011, 05:59:55 PM
No, this PCB is not designed for home etching and would be nearly impossible to etch even with very good resolution equipment at home.

However, if you Go ogle search, some people have done layouts for this that are meant for home etching.
Mr. Taylor I´ve made PCB fiberglass two layers, it no easy but if you are experienced you made it, please post the two side PCB for etching at my risk!! OK?? thanks man it great you work!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 13, 2011, 07:46:25 PM
Roberto, as I said there already are some layouts for this, see the Pisotones website, and I think in the Wiki at the top of this forum and by using the search feature on this forum there are a few threads with different layouts already posted. These layouts would be much better suited to making at home - there's no reason to use mine. There are some places with 6 mil trace spacing etc.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: GodSaveMetal on August 13, 2011, 09:27:29 PM
Roberto, as I said there already are some layouts for this, see the Pisotones website, and I think in the Wiki at the top of this forum and by using the search feature on this forum there are a few threads with different layouts already posted. These layouts would be much better suited to making at home - there's no reason to use mine. There are some places with 6 mil trace spacing etc.

Ok my friend I'm looking at PISOTONES the layout for it!!! thank mister!!! your great sir!!!!!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 13, 2011, 09:47:00 PM
Besides, the boards Taylor makes are top notch and well worth the measly $17 he's asking to cover his costs/time.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 14, 2011, 06:24:22 PM
Enclosure is complete. Got all the parts sourced, just waiting for the board now. Anyone that watches Aqua Teen will like the "mister" reference. Thanks Vince_B for the drilling template.

(http://www.thedefog.com/misc/misterymeat1.jpg)
(http://www.thedefog.com/misc/misterymeat2.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 14, 2011, 06:45:49 PM
Wow, fantastic work!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 14, 2011, 07:40:56 PM
This is a really nice enclosure thedefog, I'm glad that my drilling template has been useful to you.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 14, 2011, 08:54:16 PM
I still haven't drilled the spot for the LED because I'm debating installing an indicator LED like on the original unit. The million dollar question is where it goes in the circuit. I couldn't find a schematic of the original, but I'd imagine it just hooks in where the LED for one of the vactrols goes.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 14, 2011, 09:21:16 PM
If I understand you correctly, you're wanting an LED that flashes with your envelope? The one on the board already does that. Simply follow the wiring diagram in the build doc.  :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 14, 2011, 10:15:33 PM
The pcb have pads for soldering the led. The hole for the led that I made on the drilling template is just on top of those pads. So you just have to cut the legs of the led to the right length then solder it on the pcb and it will line up with the hole on the enclosure. But you can also put the led anywhere else on the enclosure and run to wires to the pads on the pcb.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 14, 2011, 11:23:25 PM
If I understand you correctly, you're wanting an LED that flashes with your envelope? The one on the board already does that. Simply follow the wiring diagram in the build doc.  :)

Awesome, that's what I was looking for. Thanks Taylor. Should have asked that first. I'll probably include both one for on status in red and green for the envelope.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 14, 2011, 11:28:37 PM
A cool thing to do would be to use one of those bicolor LEDs, so it's red when on but flashes green with your playing, etc. Haven't tried it but should work and looks fancy.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 15, 2011, 10:34:07 AM
A cool thing to do would be to use one of those bicolor LEDs, so it's red when on but flashes green with your playing, etc. Haven't tried it but should work and looks fancy.

That sounds cool. I wish I had one of these already. Maybe the rat shack down the street has them so I don't have to go out of my way to order one.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on August 16, 2011, 09:56:25 AM
So to confirm ,the LED on the PCB, that you would assume was a simple status LED, actually is an LED that will fade or go brighter with the envelope?
Is it therefore even possible to have both indicators, like the original meatball?

thanks and sorry if I am not grasping something fundamental. Ive read the Build PDF.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 16, 2011, 06:48:43 PM
So to confirm ,the LED on the PCB, that you would assume was a simple status LED, actually is an LED that will fade or go brighter with the envelope?

Correct.


Quote
Is it therefore even possible to have both indicators, like the original meatball?

The way the diagram shows, the LED indicating envelope will turn off when the pedal is off. It should be possible to adjust the value of RLED so that the LED lights dimly when the pedal is on but the envelope is closed, and brightens with attack.

If you instead wanted separate LEDs for bypass and envelope, simply wire the envelope LED straight to the board without involving the switch at all, and use the center pole of your 3PDT to wire up your bypass LED as is normally done in pedals (search "3pdt wiring" if you're unfamiliar with the normal scheme for this).
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on August 16, 2011, 08:32:06 PM
So, to confirm, to have the envelope LED, you dont fill the switch pads on the PCB, and it will remain on all the time?

Again sorry for the noob questions.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 16, 2011, 08:49:14 PM
Just to be sure that you understand:
The pads for the led on the pcb are for a led that will flash following the envelope. If you want a led that remains on all the time (that will not flash) you don't use those pads. You have to wire your led like a normal status led. If you don't know how, go to tonepad.com and looks at the pdf with the wirings diagrams.
You also can use 2 leds if you want (1 indicator and 1 following the envelope) but to do so, solder one of the leds directly on the pcb (without wiring it to the 3pdt switch) and use those unused poles of the 3pdt to wire your indicator led.
I hope this is clear enough.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 16, 2011, 09:30:25 PM
thedefog, I was looking again at your enclosure and I'm sorry to tell you that but I think that you made a mistake with your decals. Because of the way you have oriented your chicken head knobs, up/down and high/low will be reversed. On the original Meat Ball those knobs are pointing inward (not outward like yours) and I'm pretty sure that Taylor's pcb have been made with the orientation of the original in mind.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on August 17, 2011, 12:31:52 PM
Just to be sure that you understand:
The pads for the led on the pcb are for a led that will flash following the envelope. If you want a led that remains on all the time (that will not flash) you don't use those pads. You have to wire your led like a normal status led. If you don't know how, go to tonepad.com and looks at the pdf with the wirings diagrams.
You also can use 2 leds if you want (1 indicator and 1 following the envelope) but to do so, solder one of the leds directly on the pcb (without wiring it to the 3pdt switch) and use those unused poles of the 3pdt to wire your indicator led.
I hope this is clear enough.

Yeah thats cool I understand.
I wanted to confirm that the SW pads on the PCB are unfilled in the case of using 2 LEDs. I assume yes, but its not always the case...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 17, 2011, 02:34:17 PM
thedefog, I was looking again at your enclosure and I'm sorry to tell you that but I think that you made a mistake with your decals. Because of the way you have oriented your chicken head knobs, up/down and high/low will be reversed. On the original Meat Ball those knobs are pointing inward (not outward like yours) and I'm pretty sure that Taylor's pcb have been made with the orientation of the original in mind.

Crap, you're right! Good thing it is just a piece of printer transparency film sitting on the top right now. I hadn't clear-coated it yet for that very reason. Thanks for the heads up!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 17, 2011, 02:36:05 PM
thedefog, I was looking again at your enclosure and I'm sorry to tell you that but I think that you made a mistake with your decals. Because of the way you have oriented your chicken head knobs, up/down and high/low will be reversed. On the original Meat Ball those knobs are pointing inward (not outward like yours) and I'm pretty sure that Taylor's pcb have been made with the orientation of the original in mind.

Crap, you're right! Good thing it is just a piece of printer transparency film sitting on the top right now. I hadn't clear-coated it yet for that very reason. Thanks for the heads up!

Or I could leave it as is and have that be part of the "MISTER-Y"
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: samE on August 17, 2011, 03:38:13 PM
hi, i have a question about the vactrols:

i notice on the schmatic the two vactrols are mark 120k and 220k

i could only buy an LDR and LED combo to make the vactrols myself, these are rated at 1M - dark res', should i look for the marked values or am i fine with the diy versions?

thanks in advance

one more thing, does anyone know a good and cheap place to buy stomp switches in the uk? or a toggle equivalent? i tend to use my effects on table tops and not the floor... :P
 :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 17, 2011, 04:19:22 PM
hi, i have a question about the vactrols:

i notice on the schmatic the two vactrols are mark 120k and 220k

Actually, no, the LDRs each have another resistor in parallel with them, of the values 220k and 120k. Because of that, the values of the LDRs themselves aren't too important but you can be safe choosing something with similar light/dark values and speed as the optocouplers listed in the bill of materials.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nocentelli on August 17, 2011, 06:02:28 PM
one more thing, does anyone know a good and cheap place to buy stomp switches in the uk? or a toggle equivalent? i tend to use my effects on table tops and not the floor... :P
 :)

Bitsbox has a cheapish range of toggles and flat £1.50 shipping, drtweek has reasonably priced 3PDT stomps and reasonable shipping.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on August 18, 2011, 07:24:17 AM
rapid do Alpha DPDT stomps for £1.65
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: samE on August 18, 2011, 09:48:43 AM
hi,  regarding the Vactrols would this one be fine to use:
HCPL-817 Optocoupler

all so, could i use 3PDT On-On 2-position 3-pole toggle.
inplace of the stomp switch and still have a true bypass?

sorry if im a bit Noobish, just want to get it right....

thanks.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 18, 2011, 10:35:13 AM
I don't know for the vactrols but the switch will be fine. The only difference is that you will have to use your fingers instead of your foot to switch it on.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 19, 2011, 12:01:50 AM
Populated the board tonight... But cracked 3 of the pots in the process of getting it to fit in the case. Definitely a good idea to mount them in the case PRIOR to putting the board in. Luckily I have the pots, only without the legs so I'm going to have to wired them now...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 19, 2011, 09:20:50 AM
I'm sorry to hear that, but you should have remember what I said when I posted the drilling template:
Quote
It's easier to mount the switches and pots on the enclosure before soldering them to the pcb. If you try to solder everything on the pcb before mounting them on the enclosure it might be harder to make each components fit in their holes.
At least you didn't damage the pcb.

I have completed mine yesterday, I will post some pictures when I will have the time today.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 19, 2011, 02:35:47 PM
Here are the pictures:
(http://img833.imageshack.us/img833/6986/img0616censored.jpg)

(http://img9.imageshack.us/img9/86/img0455it.jpg)

(http://img690.imageshack.us/img690/8786/img0606cn.jpg)

Thanks to Taylor for this pcb. I wanted to build one for a while but I didn't really wanted to do all the offboard wiring for the switches and pots.
This is not a plug and play effect but if you take the time to understand how each of the controls interact with each others, you can achieve some really cool sounds.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 19, 2011, 02:56:33 PM
Great guts Vince!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 21, 2011, 09:23:47 PM
I replaced the busted pots with new ones. I originally had mounted them all in the pedal as suggested, but they didn't reach the solder pads. I thought I'd be able to bend them gently and get them to reach, and they did, but when I tightened them down with the nuts they snapped.

So now I have everything wired up, but it doesn't seem to be working in filter up mode. The envelope just doesn't trigger and the low and bandpass modes turn off the output. Works fine in Down mode though. Maybe I have a bad switch. Either way I'm going to have to spend some time debugging now...

EDIT: Is this just my build and I did something wrong, or does the intensity get reversed when it goes between up/down mode? My build seems to be working right, just wasn't expecting that odd behavior from it. Also, the blend seems somewhat useless on mine, as far left is the clean signal, moving towards middle ramps clean volume to nothing (no output), then past that to the far right is the effected output.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 22, 2011, 12:15:27 AM
The blend is obviously not right on your build, you should still have output when the knob is in the middle position.
I don't think that the intensity is supposed to get "reversed" when you change from up/down but on some settings backing off the intensity knob a bit can make the effect sound more intense.
I can't really help you more as I don't know what can be the cause of your problems.
I'm sorry to hear that you had so much trouble with the pots. It really suprises me that they snapped like this.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: soggybag on August 22, 2011, 12:36:33 AM
What's so special about the LM1458? 1458 type op-amps are pretty bog standard. Can you use any variety of 1458? or is there special about the LM1458?

Second question, I notice in your image the status LED is soldered to the board. But, the wiring diagram shows these pads wired through the stompswitch? From the scheme it looks like this LED monitors the envelope. I'm guessing your need to wire this through the switch to turn it off when the effect bypassed?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Barcode80 on August 22, 2011, 02:09:36 AM
What's so special about the LM1458? 1458 type op-amps are pretty bog standard. Can you use any variety of 1458? or is there special about the LM1458?

Second question, I notice in your image the status LED is soldered to the board. But, the wiring diagram shows these pads wired through the stompswitch? From the scheme it looks like this LED monitors the envelope. I'm guessing your need to wire this through the switch to turn it off when the effect bypassed?

I don't know anything about any kind of rule regarding special opamps or anything. I used tl072 and 4558 in my pisotones build and it worked great. You should be able to use any dual opamp at all.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 22, 2011, 02:26:25 AM
What's so special about the LM1458? 1458 type op-amps are pretty bog standard. Can you use any variety of 1458? or is there special about the LM1458?

Second question, I notice in your image the status LED is soldered to the board. But, the wiring diagram shows these pads wired through the stompswitch? From the scheme it looks like this LED monitors the envelope. I'm guessing your need to wire this through the switch to turn it off when the effect bypassed?

I don't know anything about any kind of rule regarding special opamps or anything. I used tl072 and 4558 in my pisotones build and it worked great. You should be able to use any dual opamp at all.

No, you can't use just any old opamp and expect it to always work. Basically, as I understand it this type of envelope follower relies on how linearly the opamps operate towards the power supply rails. There is a lot of info on this site regarding this with nurse quacky/docotr Q, Q-tron, etc. type circuits.

Now, Barcode, you may have gotten lucky and had TL072s work somehow. In my experiments I could never get this circuit to work with any of these jelly bean type opamps. There was absolutely no envelope. Even though it worked for you, it isn't going to work for everybody, and since the 1458 type opamps are easily available and cheap, I see no reason to gamble or sit there and try 20 opamps.

Also, and this explains why I have LM1458 in the build document: I have to write these directions so they can be understood and followed by people of varying experience/knowledge levels. If I leave something open-ended or if I give instructions that might, maybe, kind of work, it will confound noobs and I have to answer literally hundreds of emails about a single thing like opamps.  :D That's also why it says to use film caps, etc. - I don't care about cap dielectrics, but for people who have no idea about buying parts, this seems like an important question, and if I specify something like that in the doc you can assume I have previously received a few hundred emails about it!  ;D

So, other brands of 1458 should work just fine. If you feel like experimenting, other opamp types may also work. But, I can guarantee that LM1458 works, for those without the knowledge or time to try to find something else based on the important parameters.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 22, 2011, 09:16:27 AM
Second question, I notice in your image the status LED is soldered to the board. But, the wiring diagram shows these pads wired through the stompswitch? From the scheme it looks like this LED monitors the envelope. I'm guessing your need to wire this through the switch to turn it off when the effect bypassed?
You have to solder (or wire) one leg of the led directly to the board and the other leg has to go to the 3pdt (as you can see in the build document). Otherwise the led will stay lit even when the effect is bypassed.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: soggybag on August 22, 2011, 12:01:20 PM
Thanks, that's what it looked like, but I thought I would confirm.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on August 23, 2011, 08:51:36 PM
Hoping to get this one finished this week. Here is my work in progress!

(http://i1178.photobucket.com/albums/x374/LaceSensor1/Meatball/P1020260.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 24, 2011, 12:09:08 PM
The blend is obviously not right on your build, you should still have output when the knob is in the middle position.
I don't think that the intensity is supposed to get "reversed" when you change from up/down but on some settings backing off the intensity knob a bit can make the effect sound more intense.
I can't really help you more as I don't know what can be the cause of your problems.
I'm sorry to hear that you had so much trouble with the pots. It really suprises me that they snapped like this.

Maybe I damaged the blend pot as well in the process somehow. I'm also surprised, I didn't apply a whole lot of force while tightening the nuts (finger tightened). I think something just shifted and they all kinda snapped from the excessive force on them. No biggie though, as it is working now. Just have to play around with the resistor value for my bright green LED and i'm done!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on August 25, 2011, 10:03:58 AM
Finished mine.
Some setting give wierd results that dont sound "right" but ive found a good place to put the colour intens and blend that produce nice sounds with all other switch settings.
Something wierd goes on in the down setting, if you max the colour intensity and blend the signal all gets cut.
Im not sure if its just the idiosynscrasies of the device, but the standard lovetone "pure meatball" setting is unacheivable due to this oddness.

Anyway, heres the guts.

(http://i1178.photobucket.com/albums/x374/LaceSensor1/Meatball/P1020282.jpg)

(http://i1178.photobucket.com/albums/x374/LaceSensor1/Meatball/P1020279.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lwatford on August 25, 2011, 04:45:25 PM
proably a dumb question, but how do you set the switches for the correct number of positions and throws?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 25, 2011, 04:48:17 PM
There is a washer that comes with this type of switch, which has a little nub sticking out of it. The switch body has slots with numbers around the dial. You put the washer's nub into the slot corresponding to the number of throws you need (2 for up/down, 3 for bp/lp/hp, etc...)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lwatford on August 25, 2011, 07:16:47 PM
one more...where does the board ground?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 25, 2011, 07:33:14 PM
The GND pad at the top center of the board. Connect this and all other grounds together at a central point (most people use the input jack's ground tab).
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Barcode80 on August 26, 2011, 01:24:53 AM
proably a dumb question, but how do you set the switches for the correct number of positions and throws?
there's a washer with a tab on it, depending on what hole that tab sits in when you mount it will determine the number of throws.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lwatford on August 26, 2011, 08:43:44 AM
The GND pad at the top center of the board. Connect this and all other grounds together at a central point (most people use the input jack's ground tab).

Thanks! I just put everything together based on the layout in the build document. I had everything else grounded but the board!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thedefog on August 26, 2011, 11:15:19 AM

EDIT: Is this just my build and I did something wrong, or does the intensity get reversed when it goes between up/down mode? My build seems to be working right, just wasn't expecting that odd behavior from it. Also, the blend seems somewhat useless on mine, as far left is the clean signal, moving towards middle ramps clean volume to nothing (no output), then past that to the far right is the effected output.

Okay, so maybe I was smoking something when I was testing this out, because I brought it to band rehearsal last night and it worked perfectly. Even wrote a new song using it. And it was AWESOME! I love this thing. It is very versitile. I love how squirely the LDRs can be on certain settings and the reaction between your guitar strings and playing method. Other pedal interaction and the effect loop is a must for this. I think this is my new favorite effect pedal now. Thanks again Taylor and Vince_b for your help.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on August 26, 2011, 06:49:52 PM
Hey Taylor, just ordered two of your meatshpere boards and an octave board.

Can't wait to get started!  :D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lwatford on August 27, 2011, 03:56:37 PM
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v298/leefordwatford/Photo-0026.jpg)

love it! Thanks for the great projects!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 27, 2011, 04:49:08 PM
Looking good!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JohnL on August 31, 2011, 01:41:45 PM
So I ordered my board today and want to make sure that I am ordering the right rotary switches. Would these be the right ones?

http://www.mammothelectronics.com/ALPHA-SR2612F-0304-18R0B-D8-N-ROTARY-SWITCH-3P2-4T-p/820-3p2-4t.htm (http://www.mammothelectronics.com/ALPHA-SR2612F-0304-18R0B-D8-N-ROTARY-SWITCH-3P2-4T-p/820-3p2-4t.htm)

Thanks for the help, I'm sure I'll be here often since I also ordered the echobase....
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 31, 2011, 05:23:12 PM
Yes, that switch will work.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: soggybag on September 01, 2011, 12:50:45 AM
I just got two boards in the mail today. The quality is great, they look really good. This never happens, but I also received parts today also. It's an auspicious beginning for the new project...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on September 06, 2011, 08:25:47 PM
Taylor! Got the pcb's today. Wow! these are real nice and clean.  :o

thank you thank you thank you!  ;D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on September 06, 2011, 09:40:12 PM
Glad you guys got your boards and are liking them. Looking forward to seeing more builds.  :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: soggybag on September 13, 2011, 12:55:41 AM
Looks like everyone has designed the graphic to show two positions for Range, but the schematic shows three positions?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Jaicen_solo on September 13, 2011, 03:23:05 AM
This project looks awesome, i'll be picking up some boards on payday. Is there a BOM that I can use to order all the parts together, so I can be sure they'll all fit?
Also, does anybody have a drilling template? I'm not good at sorting the enclosures.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on September 13, 2011, 03:28:48 AM
Soggybag: I think everybody just copied the Lovetone graphics. To me it looks like there are actually four positions on the original, high, low, and two dotted positions between. That is what everybody is copying.

But, in all the schematics I've seen and mine, and my board, there are only three positions. Hmm...  ??? IME that switch isn't the most useful anyway - it seems a bit redundant with the way the others controls work. But that's just me.

Jaicen: The BOM is in the PDF on the website. Vince B contributed a drill template and it is located within this thread.  :icon_wink:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Jaicen_solo on September 13, 2011, 08:30:30 AM
Thanks Taylor, I guess i'm guilty of not going through all the info before I posted. Just jumped on it a bit in my excitement!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on September 13, 2011, 09:42:41 AM
I am about to build my first envelope filter. I want to build iton a pcb. I have access to the pcbs of Dr. Q, Snow White Auto Wah, Mu-Tron MicroQ, MXR Envelope Filter and this.

Which have the deepest/most-resonant/synthiest sound of the bunch? I'd guess this one, that is why i post in this topic but i wanna be sure.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Hankster on September 16, 2011, 03:09:24 PM
 FAKE ROTARY SWITCHES ON EBAY! >:(
 I got my Meatshere and have been taking it easy on this build. What I want to post about is a rotary switch delima I had with an Ebay seller. Advertised as Alpha and look dead on! But it doesn't have Alpha anywhere on it. It has an H inside of a circle. It has rectangle, or square holes for pins but no pins came with it and when I've been able to get a look inside throught the holes, I don't see any action happening that can be stopped. So I think the holes are useless ??? I'm going to order Alpha switches. They should come with stop-tabs and I can see if they work on these things.
  While I'm here, and on the subject... Are there any brief instructions on the rotary switches and their mounting I should know? Little tips or tricks? I vaguely recall dealing with these plastic, pin setting rotaries before, but not really much other than you can move a pin for different amounts of positions.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Hankster on September 16, 2011, 03:20:35 PM
 :icon_redface:  I should have read the forum thoroughly. The fake rotary switches have "SET WASHERS" on them! They have numbers on how many positions you want... everything an alpha does. Oops. A washer... I thought it was a little plastic pin.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on September 19, 2011, 03:50:55 AM
This weekend I finally found the time to build the Meat Sphere.
It was so much more fun building it than with all the off board switches and pots!   8)
Thanks a lot to Taylor for the fantastic PCB!
Also thanks a lot to Vince_b for the drilling template!

There are two mods I implemented so far.

First, the previously described colour pot mod, which is mandatory IMHO.

Second, a mod I like to call the "Moog switch".
In contrast to the Meatball (which keeps Q constant with frequency) in  the famous Moog ladder filter Q decreases with frequency, which to my knowledge is an important part of the Moog filters sound.
I like this feature since with bass guitar (didn't check with guitar) the bass may become rather unpredictable at certain settings of the Meatball.
Although it may sound cool the sound engineer hates you for this  :icon_lol:
I did a couple of LTSpice simulations to find out that the Moog filters Q frequency dependency can be approximated by adding a 470n cap in series with 10k resistor in the feedback loop of the Meatball.
The "moog switch" is inserted in place of the 10k feedback resistor and has the 10k and the 470n mounted to the switch. It switches between 10k only (meatball mode) and 470n in series with 10k (Moog mode).
For some reason I needed to add a 100k resistor in parallel with the 470n. Without the 100k there was massive distortion. Might be that it was just a cold solder joint on the switch that caused the distortion. Anyway, I didn't care to remove the 100k again since it worked.
Thought I'd share because I really dig the Moog mode. In fact I prefer it with bass guitar.

Still need to add a phase inverter board to make the blend pot work usable when in LP filter mode.

Cheers,

Markus
 
   
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on September 19, 2011, 04:13:36 AM
Great mods, Markus, thanks for your post!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: gtown_caps_fan on September 22, 2011, 09:17:01 PM
This weekend I finally found the time to build the Meat Sphere.
It was so much more fun building it than with all the off board switches and pots!   8)
Thanks a lot to Taylor for the fantastic PCB!
Also thanks a lot to Vince_b for the drilling template!

There are two mods I implemented so far.

First, the previously described colour pot mod, which is mandatory IMHO.

Second, a mod I like to call the "Moog switch".
In contrast to the Meatball (which keeps Q constant with frequency) in  the famous Moog ladder filter Q decreases with frequency, which to my knowledge is an important part of the Moog filters sound.
I like this feature since with bass guitar (didn't check with guitar) the bass may become rather unpredictable at certain settings of the Meatball.
Although it may sound cool the sound engineer hates you for this  :icon_lol:
I did a couple of LTSpice simulations to find out that the Moog filters Q frequency dependency can be approximated by adding a 470n cap in series with 10k resistor in the feedback loop of the Meatball.
The "moog switch" is inserted in place of the 10k feedback resistor and has the 10k and the 470n mounted to the switch. It switches between 10k only (meatball mode) and 470n in series with 10k (Moog mode).
For some reason I needed to add a 100k resistor in parallel with the 470n. Without the 100k there was massive distortion. Might be that it was just a cold solder joint on the switch that caused the distortion. Anyway, I didn't care to remove the 100k again since it worked.
Thought I'd share because I really dig the Moog mode. In fact I prefer it with bass guitar.

Still need to add a phase inverter board to make the blend pot work usable when in LP filter mode.

Cheers,

Markus
 
   



Thanks Markus, but I didn't see the "previously mentioned Colour mod". I looked through the entire thread, and searched it with my browser. Can you please tell more? I just ordered my board yesterday and am sourcing parts now, so if there is a change to the colour pot value or something, it would be great to know in advance.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on September 23, 2011, 01:18:23 AM
Hey,

sorry, with "previously" I didn't refer to this thread but to older threads.

The colour pot mod is very simple. No different pot value needed. You just need connect the wiper with the lug connected to the 1k5. Looking at the PCB component side up, pots north it's the left lug you need to connect the wiper to.
The mod doesn't change the available range for resonance or gain. It just makes the pot much more easy to adjust.

Here's an image I did a while ago (in fact it's already seven years  :icon_eek: ). Anyway...

Variable RQ (G, Q) is without the mod, fixed RQ is with the mod.

(http://img7.photobucket.com/albums/v21/markusw/Meatball/Meatball_colour_calc.jpg)

Hope this helps.

Regards,

Markus







Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: gtown_caps_fan on September 23, 2011, 10:20:34 AM
Thanks. So just jumper lug 1 to lug 2. I appreciate your assistance.

Bruce
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: jefe on September 23, 2011, 12:32:02 PM
Wow - I haven't been around in a few months - Taylor made a PCB clone of the Meatball, with board mounted rotary switches & pots??!!

*PURCHASED*

Very cool, Taylor, thanks for doing this - I've been wanting to build one of these for a long time, but the offboard wiring looked like a pain. Can't wait!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: soggybag on September 24, 2011, 11:33:56 PM
Just finished up a build and wrote a report on my site here: http://www.super-freq.com/2011/09/meatsphere/

Thanks Taylor, great PCB makes a really easy project out of what could be a wiring nightmare.

Thanks Vince B, the drilling template worked perfectly!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on September 25, 2011, 01:15:53 AM
Wow, very thorough! Thanks for that report and I'm glad you like the build.

Sorry you don't like the name.  :P FWIW, the suggestion I heard most but which I vetoed was "Ball Meat". Do I get any points for not using that one?  ;D

Originally I wanted to call it "Computer-generated chrome sphere rolling down a checkered meat hallway" but I couldn't fit that on the silkscreen layer...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JustinFun on September 25, 2011, 06:57:15 AM
Since I've started receiving a few build reports and questions about the Meat Sphere PCB, here's a thread for discussion and posting your builds.

Here's the correct way to orient the rotary switches and pots on the board:
(http://musicpcb.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/MEATSPHERE3-003.jpg)

I will be posting a drill template and some of my own build photos shortly. The PCB fits comfortably in a 1790NS enclosure. I've been having a lot of fun with the analog octave down, into the Meat Sphere for synth sounds.

I'm a little confused by the switches here. I've got these switches from Musikding:

http://www.musikding.de/product_info.php/info/p2852_Rotary-switch-3P4T-sealed-pcb.html

and I can't match the "a/b/c" poles which are labled on the board with the poles on the switches if I mount them behind the board as shown. They would mount properly from the front, but from the back if you line up 'a' then 'b' and 'c' are reversed.

Does it matter? Am I doing something wrong, or have I got the wrong switches?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: soggybag on September 25, 2011, 10:48:01 AM
Apparently you can mount these switches in any orientation.

Taylor, I forgot my manners I shouldn't have said anything about the name.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on September 25, 2011, 10:49:17 AM
I'm a little confused by the switches here. I've got these switches from Musikding:

http://www.musikding.de/product_info.php/info/p2852_Rotary-switch-3P4T-sealed-pcb.html

and I can't match the "a/b/c" poles which are labled on the board with the poles on the switches if I mount them behind the board as shown. They would mount properly from the front, but from the back if you line up 'a' then 'b' and 'c' are reversed.

Does it matter? Am I doing something wrong, or have I got the wrong switches?

I got the same switches from musikding. Don't worry. Orientation doesn't matter. You just need to set the locking washer ("Rastring") to the appropriate number of positions you need.

Regards,

Markus
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JustinFun on September 25, 2011, 12:08:14 PM
That's great news, thanks Markus and Soggybag!

Completely confused as to how these switches work, though. Will have to do some reading up...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on September 25, 2011, 04:57:31 PM
Apparently you can mount these switches in any orientation.

Taylor, I forgot my manners I shouldn't have said anything about the name.

I'm not offended, I was just kidding around. Picking a name for a PCB is a necessity for practical reasons, but not something I concern myself too heavily with - I expect people to pick their own name for their pedal anyway.

For my own original circuits like the Uncanny Valley and Brazen Prophet, I put something into it and tried to pick a name with some kind of relation to the effect, but with this one my main goal was just not to step on copyright while getting the idea across.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: monkeyxx on September 25, 2011, 07:37:30 PM
This weekend I finally found the time to build the Meat Sphere.
It was so much more fun building it than with all the off board switches and pots!   8)
Thanks a lot to Taylor for the fantastic PCB!
Also thanks a lot to Vince_b for the drilling template!

There are two mods I implemented so far.

First, the previously described colour pot mod, which is mandatory IMHO.

Second, a mod I like to call the "Moog switch".
In contrast to the Meatball (which keeps Q constant with frequency) in  the famous Moog ladder filter Q decreases with frequency, which to my knowledge is an important part of the Moog filters sound.
I like this feature since with bass guitar (didn't check with guitar) the bass may become rather unpredictable at certain settings of the Meatball.
Although it may sound cool the sound engineer hates you for this  :icon_lol:
I did a couple of LTSpice simulations to find out that the Moog filters Q frequency dependency can be approximated by adding a 470n cap in series with 10k resistor in the feedback loop of the Meatball.
The "moog switch" is inserted in place of the 10k feedback resistor and has the 10k and the 470n mounted to the switch. It switches between 10k only (meatball mode) and 470n in series with 10k (Moog mode).
For some reason I needed to add a 100k resistor in parallel with the 470n. Without the 100k there was massive distortion. Might be that it was just a cold solder joint on the switch that caused the distortion. Anyway, I didn't care to remove the 100k again since it worked.
Thought I'd share because I really dig the Moog mode. In fact I prefer it with bass guitar.

Still need to add a phase inverter board to make the blend pot work usable when in LP filter mode.

Cheers,

Markus
 
   


Hi,

Is the feedback 10K resistor you're referring to the one that goes from pin 1 to pin 2 of U1A in the meat sphere schematic, or the 10K that goes from pin 8 of U1C back to pin 2 of U1A?

really want to try this moog mod
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: monkeyxx on September 25, 2011, 08:20:54 PM
here's my build.  takes a bit of learning, this one, don't be completely disappointed if you don't get any sounds out of it at first... if your rotary switches are off the useful settings (put the washers to the right amount of turns on the switch, tiny numbers are there on the black plastic), and if attack is higher than decay, you'll get no envelope.  sensitivity has to be turned up a lot sometimes to to hear the effect.  I'm liking it so far, but not sure what to do with it yet... I think it's probably going to be an occasional specific use thing, for me.  It does sound good, and I like the tweakability.  might mod the blend knob to use the "wet" signal from the send/return loop rather than the "dry" input

(http://i102.photobucket.com/albums/m112/monkeyxx/meatsphere1.jpg)
(http://i102.photobucket.com/albums/m112/monkeyxx/meatsphere2.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: monkeyxx on September 25, 2011, 08:28:02 PM
Thanks. So just jumper lug 1 to lug 2. I appreciate your assistance.

Bruce

no.  lug 2 to lug 3 I believe is the correct "colour pot mod"
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on September 26, 2011, 01:04:38 AM

Hi,

Is the feedback 10K resistor you're referring to the one that goes from pin 1 to pin 2 of U1A in the meat sphere schematic, or the 10K that goes from pin 8 of U1C back to pin 2 of U1A?

really want to try this moog mod

It's the one that goes from pin 8 U1C back to pin 2 of U1A. Sorry, I wasn't more specific about that.

Peace,

Markus

Edit: the jumper for the colour pot mod is set correct. Don't know if this would be lugs 2 and 3 or 1 and 2. I always mix them up ;D

Edit 2: I just Spice simulated the "moog switch" the way you wired it (i.e. from pin 1 to pin 2 of U1A). At high resonance settings it should perform similar, at lower resonance settings it should perform pretty weird: if the Spice sims are correct it would lower the resonance at high AND low frequencies.
 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on September 26, 2011, 03:04:05 AM
This is how I wired the "moog switch":

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v21/markusw/Moogswitchsmall.jpg)

In fact, it doesn't really change the sound if you reverse the wires to pins 2 and 8.

Peace,

Markus
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on September 26, 2011, 10:16:31 AM

(http://i102.photobucket.com/albums/m112/monkeyxx/meatsphere2.jpg)

Where did you get the plastic covers for the pots?

Peace,

Markus
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: monkeyxx on September 26, 2011, 08:43:15 PM
wow that's a clever way to wire up that DPDT moog switch!  I couldn't think that fast so I just did a little stripboard daughter board hanging off the switch

the pots come with covers from www.taydaelectronics.com and they have all their pots at only 50 cents each!!!  I love that place I buy all my pots there.  They are in asia, but they ship quicker than some US companies, usually a week or so from order time, and shipping is cheap.  Their ICs and transistors are a good value, too, as well as common resistors and diodes.  I don't think the resistor tolerances are as tight as Xicon but I've built all my pedals with cheap resistors and they all work fine and sound fine so far.  They also have $3 3PDT footswitches and some cheap jacks.  I shop at a lot of places but Tayda is right for these types of things.

If you want to spend extra for your un-covered pots, barry at www.guitarpcb.com sells little black rubber end nipple things he calls them "pot condoms."

the miswired "moog" switch behaved different from what you would have guessed.  at low color settings, it was a nice sound, a different kind of sweeping sound, sounded like the color was set higher than actual though, and if you'd turn the color up past 9 o'clock it would just do this terribly loud self oscillation that hurts your ears, but if you'd turn the volume down, you could tune it with the "intensity" knob, which I think should be renamed "range".  doesn't do that now that I've fixed it.

I really like the "moog" mod and would recommend it as essential to any future builders.  It's a very musical sound, to me it just sounds a little mellower than the regular sweep.  for example I think the radiohead "Paranoid Android" riffs sounded better on Moog mode than regular

I attempted to do a "wet/dry" switch for the "blend" knob, where you could get the "wet" sound from the send/return loop to blend with the filtered sound, rather than the "dry" basic input sound, but I could not for the life of me figure out how to do this with a simple on/on SPDT switch, all I got was distorted messy garbage and no working tones.  any help with a mod like this?


BUILD REPORT

at first I was impressed with the PCB, but then after desoldering a few components only once, some solder pads lifted immediately.  this is not a fantastically durable board.  get it right the first time or you might end up in trouble.  and be careful with any desoldering.  socket the ICs to be safe if there's any question

I am also really sad at the choice of the plastic rotary switches.  with a plastic shaft that close to a foot stomp switch, you are just asking for trouble.  if this ever goes on a pedalboard for me, there is going to be a mandatory "true bypass looper" to keep the switches out of harm's way.  I wouldn't trust this for regular gigging use as is.

I'm really pleased with the whole project overall, though, and these issues can be worked around and negated, but I just wanted to note them.  not having to wire up the rotaries offboard was a huge relief.  I offboard wired the pots though and that wasn't too bad.  And the drilling template posted earlier was a godsend for getting the enclosure done quickly and accurately.

I used superbright water clear 5mm LEDs at first with the radioshack LDRs I used and the sound was harsh and too loud, just weird and wrong.  I substituted 3mm regular old green opaque LEDs and now it sounds like it should.  Just a tip for anyone rolling their own vactrols.  I guess you save a few bucks this way.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: scdesigns on September 26, 2011, 10:54:43 PM
Just a quick question on the swtiches, will these work well for this build: http://www.banzaimusic.com/Rotary-Switch-3x4-Pins.html (http://www.banzaimusic.com/Rotary-Switch-3x4-Pins.html)

Thanks
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on September 27, 2011, 02:36:35 AM
Hey monkeyxx,

thanks a lot for all the informations regarding the pot covers!  :)

Glad you like the "moog switch"  8)

For your wet/dry mod: I guess you could lift one leg of the blend pot (the one connected to the input buffer) and insert a SPDT switch with pole to the leg of the blend pot, one throw to the empty pad (or the send jack if it's easier) and one throw to the return jack.

Hey scdesigns,

can't tell from the picture how the pins are configured but I guess it should be OK. 

Peace,

Markus


Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: njkmonty on September 28, 2011, 07:22:09 AM
could i use  VTL5C1?

its just i have heaps of them? or is their specs not suitable?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on September 28, 2011, 07:26:24 AM
It'll probably work just fine. The slope will be a little different as the max resistance is much higher, and this is in parallel with a fixed resistance.

Because of the tweakability of the envelope follower portion of the circuit, the optos are not super critical IMO.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: gtown_caps_fan on October 03, 2011, 09:18:41 AM
Thanks. So just jumper lug 1 to lug 2. I appreciate your assistance.

Bruce

no.  lug 2 to lug 3 I believe is the correct "colour pot mod"

You're right. I was thinking that the pots mounted on the component side of the board, but that's not the case. Thanks!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on October 06, 2011, 04:58:48 AM
Which 10k resistor should i leave off from the pcb if i want to do the Moog mod? I seriously cant find any sensible traces coming from pin 8 which could go to a 10k resistor on the pcb, so i have no clue which 10k res can i leave empty.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on October 06, 2011, 11:59:17 AM
Which 10k resistor should i leave off from the pcb if i want to do the Moog mod? I seriously cant find any sensible traces coming from pin 8 which could go to a 10k resistor on the pcb, so i have no clue which 10k res can i leave empty.

Referring to the following image: there is a series of resistors left to the TL074. It's the top 10k you need to leave empty.

(http://i102.photobucket.com/albums/m112/monkeyxx/meatsphere2.jpg)

The wire to pin 8 connects to the left hand resistor pad, the one to pin 2 to the right hand pad.

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v21/markusw/Moogswitchsmall.jpg)

Peace,

Markus


Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on October 07, 2011, 01:52:24 AM
Which 10k resistor should i leave off from the pcb if i want to do the Moog mod? I seriously cant find any sensible traces coming from pin 8 which could go to a 10k resistor on the pcb, so i have no clue which 10k res can i leave empty.

Referring to the following image: there is a series of resistors left to the TL074. It's the top 10k you need to leave empty.

Thank you! I think i will post a few words about when it gets finished, i have to order some parts from Musikding so it will take some time.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on October 07, 2011, 05:27:58 AM
Which 10k resistor should i leave off from the pcb if i want to do the Moog mod? I seriously cant find any sensible traces coming from pin 8 which could go to a 10k resistor on the pcb, so i have no clue which 10k res can i leave empty.

Referring to the following image: there is a series of resistors left to the TL074. It's the top 10k you need to leave empty.

Thank you! I think i will post a few words about when it gets finished, i have to order some parts from Musikding so it will take some time.

Cool! I'm curious to hear your opinion on the moog mod.  :icon_cool:
You'll love building it with all the pots and switches PCB mount.
Can't emphasize enough how grateful I am that Taylor did this great PCB layout!

Peace,

Markus

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Dimitree on October 10, 2011, 03:30:45 PM
hi
my meatball is distorting really much. I think the problem is in the "audio path" and not in the "envelope detection path". The led is indeed following the guitar signal, but the sound is fuzzy and gated. what could be the problem? broken VACTROL, broken switch, or else?
thanks
Dimitri
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: samE on October 12, 2011, 06:23:28 PM
hello, need some help finding a 1790ns box in the uk ???, anyone know a good place.

many thanks... ;D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on October 20, 2011, 09:08:49 AM
http://uk.rs-online.com/web/p/products/3439546/?cm_mmc=UK-PPC-0411-_-google-_-3_MRO_MPN-_-hammond%201590bb_Broad&gclid=CPzJj_Wp96sCFUJItAodTC1kOQ

or if you want it powdercoated, Rapid have them. The quality is great.
http://www.rapidonline.com/Tools-Equipment/1590-series-Painted-aluminium-39-Stomp-Box-39-enclosures-200116

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Barcode80 on October 20, 2011, 02:27:09 PM
Those are great, but he mentioned the 1790NS  :)

It's a different animal. For reference, here is the 1790 on smallbear:

http://www.smallbearelec.com/Detail.bok?no=567 (http://www.smallbearelec.com/Detail.bok?no=567)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on October 22, 2011, 02:03:02 PM
Erm...its the same thing.
They are called 1950BBDD or BBXL in the UK...Check the measurements mate.

Edit - hmm not sure why the first link shows a regular BB

anyway, the ones from rapid are the correct spec
145 x 119 x 39
ITs what I used and the drill template was correct. A 1790ns might be 1mm different in any direction but it makes no difference.

Otherwise, Banzai have chinese knock off versions that will work ,but delivery is 8 euro minimum, maybe more

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Barcode80 on October 22, 2011, 02:43:55 PM
Erm...its the same thing.
They are called 1950BBDD or BBXL in the UK...Check the measurements mate.

Edit - hmm not sure why the first link shows a regular BB

anyway, the ones from rapid are the correct spec
145 x 119 x 39
ITs what I used and the drill template was correct. A 1790ns might be 1mm different in any direction but it makes no difference.

Otherwise, Banzai have chinese knock off versions that will work ,but delivery is 8 euro minimum, maybe more



That was why I was confused, both the links you posted went to 1590BB's...  :)

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on October 23, 2011, 05:39:07 AM
Erm...its the same thing.
They are called 1950BBDD or BBXL in the UK...Check the measurements mate.

Edit - hmm not sure why the first link shows a regular BB

anyway, the ones from rapid are the correct spec
145 x 119 x 39
ITs what I used and the drill template was correct. A 1790ns might be 1mm different in any direction but it makes no difference.

Otherwise, Banzai have chinese knock off versions that will work ,but delivery is 8 euro minimum, maybe more



That was why I was confused, both the links you posted went to 1590BB's...  :)



The first one did, not sure why, but the RApid one has all sizes on the same page, just have to scroll down.
The quality of them is really nice too, just quite expensive.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: sgmezei on October 26, 2011, 12:30:51 AM
Got a bunch of boards from Taylor today with this one included. Can't wait, these boards look AMAZING!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Hankster on October 28, 2011, 02:46:41 PM
Mine doesn't work!! I'm frustrated to the point of asking this forum for help. Bypass works fine. I turn on the effect and I get a buzz over everything with no effect at all. Any ideas?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MarcoMike on October 30, 2011, 05:55:00 AM
buzz may be grounding related...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: dc6 on November 05, 2011, 07:11:58 AM
Hi everyone,

Two questions regarding the Meatsphere.

1) What voltage ratings for the capacitors?

2) What is the current draw of the pedal?

Thanks
David
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on November 05, 2011, 08:03:47 AM
It runs on 9v, so to be safe you want your parts to be rated at least for about the double of that. 16v will do fine but 25v will be even better. Everything above that will also be good of course.

For the current draw, I don't know.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 15, 2011, 06:59:57 PM
Starting to populate the pcb right now.. i'm curious at the colour mod you mention... i have scanned the entire thread and couldn't find any colour mod.. can someone give me a pointer on this?
thanks


This weekend I finally found the time to build the Meat Sphere.
It was so much more fun building it than with all the off board switches and pots!   8)
Thanks a lot to Taylor for the fantastic PCB!
Also thanks a lot to Vince_b for the drilling template!

There are two mods I implemented so far.

First, the previously described colour pot mod, which is mandatory IMHO.

Second, a mod I like to call the "Moog switch".
In contrast to the Meatball (which keeps Q constant with frequency) in  the famous Moog ladder filter Q decreases with frequency, which to my knowledge is an important part of the Moog filters sound.
I like this feature since with bass guitar (didn't check with guitar) the bass may become rather unpredictable at certain settings of the Meatball.
Although it may sound cool the sound engineer hates you for this  :icon_lol:
I did a couple of LTSpice simulations to find out that the Moog filters Q frequency dependency can be approximated by adding a 470n cap in series with 10k resistor in the feedback loop of the Meatball.
The "moog switch" is inserted in place of the 10k feedback resistor and has the 10k and the 470n mounted to the switch. It switches between 10k only (meatball mode) and 470n in series with 10k (Moog mode).
For some reason I needed to add a 100k resistor in parallel with the 470n. Without the 100k there was massive distortion. Might be that it was just a cold solder joint on the switch that caused the distortion. Anyway, I didn't care to remove the 100k again since it worked.
Thought I'd share because I really dig the Moog mode. In fact I prefer it with bass guitar.

Still need to add a phase inverter board to make the blend pot work usable when in LP filter mode.

Cheers,

Markus
 
   

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 15, 2011, 07:10:58 PM
Ok i feel really stupid to ask that, but you seem to have left RLED empty on your pcb. I can't find any value on the taylor's documentation so i assumed i would have to put a standard resistance there and adjust it to my brightness liking, but seeing the pad empty really confuses me ..
What are we supposed to do with this RLED pad ? there should be a resistance in serie with any diode, right? if RLED is empty, there should be no connection to the led.. or am i just completely wrong?
Thanks for your help :p

Which 10k resistor should i leave off from the pcb if i want to do the Moog mod? I seriously cant find any sensible traces coming from pin 8 which could go to a 10k resistor on the pcb, so i have no clue which 10k res can i leave empty.

Referring to the following image: there is a series of resistors left to the TL074. It's the top 10k you need to leave empty.

(http://i102.photobucket.com/albums/m112/monkeyxx/meatsphere2.jpg)

The wire to pin 8 connects to the left hand resistor pad, the one to pin 2 to the right hand pad.

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v21/markusw/Moogswitchsmall.jpg)

Peace,

Markus



Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 15, 2011, 07:40:56 PM
Hmm, yes that's an oversight on my part. I can't believe I didn't notice it and nobody has pointed it out to me! This should be in the PDF.

For a blue LED, I use 10k. For red and other low brightness LEDs, use something like 1k.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on November 17, 2011, 03:08:58 AM
I promised a while ago that i gonna say something about this effect (especially about the Moog mod) when i finished it.

It's done and it is working but i want to put it in an enclosure to be able to try out the loop and the Moog mod before i comment on the sound. Also i want to add some more mods.
Mainly i wanna lower the cutoff frequency (lower than on "LO" setting of that "range" rotary switch) and i want it to be able to oscillate when resonance (the colour pot) is cranked.

I figured out most of the switches and pots but i have some problems with the attack pot. I can't really hear it working, it goes from super fast - to fast during the travel of the pot.
Can you make slow sweeps with it or that is against the role of an envelope follower? (i would need an ADSR/trigger combo i think)

I made an example sound of a slow filter attack speed: http://soundcloud.com/dontpostthepear/filtersweep
(it is a lowpass filter opening up slowly on a signal full of harmonics)
Can you make something like that with the Meat Sphere?

Also is it enough to jumper that 1K5 resistor coming from the 100k Colour pot to make self oscillation possible?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 17, 2011, 07:22:33 PM
So i have the pcb stuffed, everything connected, and it doesn't work so far:
symptoms :
when effect is engaged: no sound, led doesn't blink

The most probable reason why it doesn't work is that i have a MC1458P plugged in in place of the TL1458
Taylor mentioned several times that the TL 1458 is mandatory so it MIGHT be the reason why it doesn't work, i just would like ... an opinion of more experienced people saying something like :'Hey buddy, it seems like the TL1458 is the problem, i'm sure that it will work ok when you'll get the tayda order you just made today'
Anyway, to help you guys giving me an opinion:

Voltages:
TLO74
pins 1-3 : 4.5V
pin 4 : 9
pins 5-10 : 4.5
pin 11 : 0
pin 12 : 1.6
pins 13-14: 4.5
That seems pretty normal to me

MC1458P
pin 1: 6.45
pin 2: 2.9
pins 3:-4 0
pin 5: 5.37
pins 6-7: 6.61
pin 8: 9
This seems strange to me : opamps are supposed to have roughly the same voltages at all pins except power supplies, aren't they?

Potentiometers lugs :
(left to right, silkscreen up) i tried to put the pots in the middle each time

blend 4.5 (3 lugs)
intensity 7.38 6.95 6.95
colour 4.45 4.40 4.5
decay 0 0 0 <- ?!?
attack 4.95 4.95 5.90
sensitvity 0 0 0

sensityvity and decay seem dead.. i checked their connections to the PCB, no resistance between the solder and the lug so it seems ok on that side.
I also verified that the 3p4T switches are one the good positions (All left or all right, then put the number of position selector (turned the switches while probing one of the connected lugs of the switch, when there was a voltage showing up, i stopped and left the switch in that position
.
Looking at the schematic, the decay and sensitivity pots are into the part of the circuit which uses the TL1458, that's why i think that could be the reason why it does't work..
Any other ideas? suggestion? confirmation? need for more informations to get further?

Thanks in advance for your help
Peace

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 17, 2011, 09:28:28 PM
I'm not aware of such a thing as a TL1458. I spec LM1458, but any 1458 should work,so I don't think that's the problem.

Personally, I find audio probing (http://www.diystompboxes.com/pedals/debug.html) to work much better than trying to debug with voltages.

Probe the key points of the circuit to find out where the signal is dying. If you have no clean signal and no effect signal and no envelope following, then the problem probably lies near the input.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 18, 2011, 04:03:21 AM
Sorry about the LM1458, i meant TL1458 :)

Ok, so i tried the circuit again this morning (couldn't do it loud enough yesterday evening as it was 1am).
I DO get audio out of the effect, i can change the sound with the blend, colour and intensity pots and the hp/bl/lp and range switch.
Bandwith and up/down don't change anything, same for the sensitivity, attach and decay pots.
The LED don't ever turns on.
The sound i get is filtered, but does not change with the envelope.

So i think the problem is really into the LM1458 section, but i don't really know what it is yet.
The voltage difference between the vacrol led pins are around 1V i guess that's not enough to make them work.

I audio probed the parts of the circuits, i get a sound out of every pins of the TL074 so it's not the problem
I don't get any audio if i probe the pins od the LM1458, and the whole row of resistors/diodes left to it, except the lower resistor.
Looking at the schematic it seems that this corresponds exactly to the parts of the LM1458/enveloppe follower section.
 i'll try to go further into this.
I get audio from the send pad, but nothing on the center lug of the bandwidth switch, or ,from the schematic,
they are supposed to be connected through a resistor and the sensitivity pot.
I'll check that this section is working correctly




I'm not aware of such a thing as a TL1458. I spec LM1458, but any 1458 should work,so I don't think that's the problem.

Personally, I find audio probing (http://www.diystompboxes.com/pedals/debug.html) to work much better than trying to debug with voltages.

Probe the key points of the circuit to find out where the signal is dying. If you have no clean signal and no effect signal and no envelope following, then the problem probably lies near the input.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 18, 2011, 04:54:09 AM
Do you have a wire from the send pad to the return pad?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 18, 2011, 05:14:52 AM
Yes I do.
If i cut that connection, i don't get any sound at all from the effect.

Do you have a wire from the send pad to the return pad?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 19, 2011, 04:45:13 AM
So i'm still looking at this problem.
I am quite certain the problem is between the pin 14 of the TL074 and the send pad/sensitivity pot.
Looking at the voltages, i get 4.5 volts at pin 14, and 0 at the send pad and sensitivity pot... they are supposed to be connected together.
So i measured the voltages along the via between them.
Starting from pin 14, the via goes from the lower 14914 diode pad to the left of the bandwidth rotary switch.. so far, still 4.5V. then the via goes to a 10uF elec cap and the minus side of this cap goes to sent and sensitivity pot. The problem is: i don't see this cap on the schematic!.
I have 4.5 volts at the plus side of the cap, and 0 at the minus side... that goes to send and sentisitivy...
Is that normal?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 19, 2011, 01:29:45 PM
Thanks for pointing out that cap missing from the schematic. It's connected between pin 14 and the sensitivity pot.

Capacitors block DC voltages, so yes it's normal that there would be a DC voltage on what side and not the other side.

Again, IMO (having built probably 500 pedals and done a fair amount of debugging) audio probing gets to the heart of the matter much faster than voltages. If you have sound coming out of pin 14 but no sound at the center pad of the bandwidth switch, then that narrows it down to just a couple of components. Try reflowing all of those pads.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 19, 2011, 02:27:58 PM
500 pedals ! Oo That might explain the uber pcb layout skills! :)
Well that's exactly what happens : audio sound when i touch pin 14, haven't tested touching the cap pads so far, no sound at the sensitivity pot, no sound at the send and return pads, they are soldered together at the moment.
I'll try reflowing that asap.
Many thanks for your help Taylor!


Thanks for pointing out that cap missing from the schematic. It's connected between pin 14 and the sensitivity pot.

Capacitors block DC voltages, so yes it's normal that there would be a DC voltage on what side and not the other side.

Again, IMO (having built probably 500 pedals and done a fair amount of debugging) audio probing gets to the heart of the matter much faster than voltages. If you have sound coming out of pin 14 but no sound at the center pad of the bandwidth switch, then that narrows it down to just a couple of components. Try reflowing all of those pads.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: digi2t on November 21, 2011, 08:18:31 AM
I'm wonder that I might try and build this into a wah shell, but what would be the best parameter to control with a treadle?

Any opinions?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Barcode80 on November 21, 2011, 06:35:32 PM
I'm wonder that I might try and build this into a wah shell, but what would be the best parameter to control with a treadle?

Any opinions?


Well, none of the controls are really "on the fly" kind of controls. It seems fairly useless to adjust them while playing. But if I were to pick one I would pick sensitivity.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 22, 2011, 02:44:12 AM
On page 1 of this thread, there's a discussion about what the expression pedals controlled on the original. I would think intensity might be the best.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on November 22, 2011, 07:44:53 AM
I think if you set the trigger switch to "Off" you can control the cutoff freq with the "Intensity" knob.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 24, 2011, 06:29:16 AM
Hello Taylor,
Here's an update on my debugging of thus build:
I'm playing music from my computer into the effect as i probe is, so i can hear what's happening with AC voltages and not be fooled by the cap thing :)
summary of symptoms:
I get bypassed sound and processed sound.
I can filter the sound with blend, intensity, colour, range, HP/BL/LP/ and UP/DOWN.
The filter is 'fixed' i can't hear any envelope following effect. it currently acts as a rather cool sounding fixed filter.
The LED does not ever light up (but does when i probe certain components, so it's wired correctly)
things not producing a hearable change in sound when tweaked: decay, attack, sensitivity, bandwidth (pretty much the entire circuit block around the LM1458)
reminder: until my tayda order is not here, i'm using a MC1458p instead of the LM1458.. pinout is the same... can't tell about the rest. changing that will be the first thing i do when i receive the right opamp.

When i touch the pin 14 of the TL074, i hear a POP. this pop is also hearable at the via to the second layer: one of the diodes legs next to the TL074. I still have a sound at the other side of the via, and the same pop when i touch the + leg of the middle 10uF cap under the sensitivity pot. So far it seems to be ok since it follows the schematic (without the 10uF cap). From what i read of the schematic: the minus leg of the 10uF pot should then go to
- send
- left lug of sensitivity (near the center of the pcb)
If i touch these components: i hear the volume of the music lower, i guess i'm sucking voltages out of the effect. they seem connected all react the same way, so far so good.
Following the schematic: sensitivity controls the volume of the sound coming into the envelope section, so i should hear something if i probe the middle lug, and i do.
Signal then goes to the 4.7 k resistor which is i guess right under the 3 10uF caps under sensitivity. the lug on the outer side of the pcb which is connected to sensitivity lower the signal too.
The other leg of the 4.7 resistor doesn't produce anything hearable.. and it goes right to the middle lug of the bandwidth switch.. which doesn't work at all....
I tried reflowing the components, doesn't change anything. multimeter says the resistor is 4.7k so is the resistance between the outer lug of the resistance and the middle lug of bandwidth. With i turn bandwidth, it connect either to the lower pad which is connected to the circuit or to the other connected pad, with 4.7 resistance between it and middle lug of sensitivity. so i guess theres signal coming through the resistor (or through another path around the rest of the circuit??  But the changes of having 4.6k exactly seem very low to me) For this reason id say the soldering is ok. And i guess the problem lies ahead.

I'll continue this later. if anybody have an advice on what i have done so far, i'd be glad to follow any ideas :)



Thanks for pointing out that cap missing from the schematic. It's connected between pin 14 and the sensitivity pot.

Capacitors block DC voltages, so yes it's normal that there would be a DC voltage on what side and not the other side.

Again, IMO (having built probably 500 pedals and done a fair amount of debugging) audio probing gets to the heart of the matter much faster than voltages. If you have sound coming out of pin 14 but no sound at the center pad of the bandwidth switch, then that narrows it down to just a couple of components. Try reflowing all of those pads.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Dimitree on November 24, 2011, 10:58:30 AM
can anyone tell me what should be the max-min resistance of the 2 VTL5C3, but not isolated, instead in the circuit (so in parallel with other resistors and so on)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 24, 2011, 01:18:20 PM
Here's the follow up on this:
i'm still tracing the schematic: so far i noticed that :
- when i touch the positive leg of the led, the filter 'changes' and the led slightly lights up (barely seeable and it's an ultra bright blue led). so i guess the vactrols are sensitive to a voltage change around them, but the voltage doesn't change with normal use
- I traced the signal around the first half of the LM1458: if i touch the legs of the resistor and diode in the feedback loop, the filter triggers and i hear the music played through the pedal being filtered .. yay.
playing with that i noticed that sensitivity and attach pots seem to work correctly.

However i have questions about the decay pot:
on the schematic, is connected to the attack pot, and then to a 1.5K resistor to ground, with the middle lug of the pot being sent between the pot and the resistor. But i really don't see it happening on the pcb. is that normal? In fact, i have the impression that the 1.K5 resistor is placed BEFORE the decay pot, connected to 5 of the op amp, and that after that it goes to the outer lug of the decay pot, and that the other 2 pins of that pot are not connected to anything = ground plane? Right?
anyway, this seems to work when i use it so i'll make the hypothesis that it works...

the second half of the opamp circuit reacts well to probing, i can hear the filter change when it's probed, and it follows the schematic : pins 6 and 7 are connected. through the 330 k resistor, i go to the intensity pot which works very well, which goes to the direction up/down rotary switch.
3 lugs here : the upper one makes the same audio effect as when i touch pin 7 of the opamp. outer lug seems to be ground, inner lug makes a loud pop.. seems to be 9V.. everything ok so far.
It goes to the LEDs of the vactrols and indicator LED.. which doesn't light up ..
I don't really get what the problem is ...
voltage difference between the 2 legs of the indicator LED says 1.65V, isn't it enough to fire the LED up ? It's an ultra bright blue led, i googled the forward voltage of these it seems to be 2.8V, so it would be normal if it doesn't light up. The data sheet for the vactrols says 2.0 volts forward voltage.. so i guess if it have 1.65 volts, it's only normal that i don't have any filtering effect.
Maybe it's VERY opamp dependent? i tried with TL072 and the voltage between the LED lugs is 1.80, hearable change in the sound out of the circuit...

I just don't get why this voltage  between the LED lugs doesn't change with the envelope of the signal.... i guess it's the point, right? So if the voltage doesn't change it would mean theres a problem forward that i haven't found with all this process..
but i don't really know what more i could do.. do you have any advices? i'm a bit lost right now :s
...

Thanks in advance..
sorry for the long posts with all the details, but i hope someone can point out a problem i overlooked if i give all the details .. it's getting frustrating... and interesting to trace Taylor's pcb point to point :)

Looking forward to hear from you guys.. don't let me alone with this.. i'm only beginning :p

Peace,



Hello Taylor,
Here's an update on my debugging of thus build:
I'm playing music from my computer into the effect as i probe is, so i can hear what's happening with AC voltages and not be fooled by the cap thing :)
summary of symptoms:
I get bypassed sound and processed sound.
I can filter the sound with blend, intensity, colour, range, HP/BL/LP/ and UP/DOWN.
The filter is 'fixed' i can't hear any envelope following effect. it currently acts as a rather cool sounding fixed filter.
The LED does not ever light up (but does when i probe certain components, so it's wired correctly)
things not producing a hearable change in sound when tweaked: decay, attack, sensitivity, bandwidth (pretty much the entire circuit block around the LM1458)
reminder: until my tayda order is not here, i'm using a MC1458p instead of the LM1458.. pinout is the same... can't tell about the rest. changing that will be the first thing i do when i receive the right opamp.

When i touch the pin 14 of the TL074, i hear a POP. this pop is also hearable at the via to the second layer: one of the diodes legs next to the TL074. I still have a sound at the other side of the via, and the same pop when i touch the + leg of the middle 10uF cap under the sensitivity pot. So far it seems to be ok since it follows the schematic (without the 10uF cap). From what i read of the schematic: the minus leg of the 10uF pot should then go to
- send
- left lug of sensitivity (near the center of the pcb)
If i touch these components: i hear the volume of the music lower, i guess i'm sucking voltages out of the effect. they seem connected all react the same way, so far so good.
Following the schematic: sensitivity controls the volume of the sound coming into the envelope section, so i should hear something if i probe the middle lug, and i do.
Signal then goes to the 4.7 k resistor which is i guess right under the 3 10uF caps under sensitivity. the lug on the outer side of the pcb which is connected to sensitivity lower the signal too.
The other leg of the 4.7 resistor doesn't produce anything hearable.. and it goes right to the middle lug of the bandwidth switch.. which doesn't work at all....
I tried reflowing the components, doesn't change anything. multimeter says the resistor is 4.7k so is the resistance between the outer lug of the resistance and the middle lug of bandwidth. With i turn bandwidth, it connect either to the lower pad which is connected to the circuit or to the other connected pad, with 4.7 resistance between it and middle lug of sensitivity. so i guess theres signal coming through the resistor (or through another path around the rest of the circuit??  But the changes of having 4.6k exactly seem very low to me) For this reason id say the soldering is ok. And i guess the problem lies ahead.

I'll continue this later. if anybody have an advice on what i have done so far, i'd be glad to follow any ideas :)



Thanks for pointing out that cap missing from the schematic. It's connected between pin 14 and the sensitivity pot.

Capacitors block DC voltages, so yes it's normal that there would be a DC voltage on what side and not the other side.

Again, IMO (having built probably 500 pedals and done a fair amount of debugging) audio probing gets to the heart of the matter much faster than voltages. If you have sound coming out of pin 14 but no sound at the center pad of the bandwidth switch, then that narrows it down to just a couple of components. Try reflowing all of those pads.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JustinFun on November 28, 2011, 06:05:02 AM
Thanks for the board Taylor!

I've built mine - very happy with the results so far but have 2 questions:

Can someone confirm the definitive switch positions for the 4 rotary switches? I'm assuming the following from the schematic
 - Range 4 postitions
 - Bandwidth 3 positions
 - Up/Down 2 positions
 - HP/BP/LP 3 positions

Secondly I'm having some trouble with powering the pedal. It's fine on battery, but when I connect it to a 9v power supply it craps out on me - just a very gated signal with no obvious effect. I've checked the wiring of the DC socket with a multimeter and it's fine - is the pedal particularly picky on voltage or current? I'm using the AMZ power supply (http://www.muzique.com/tech/power2.htm) and it's delivering just a shade under 9v (about 8.9).
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: charmonder on November 28, 2011, 09:30:16 AM
I built two of these meatspheres, I made two mods to the circuits that I think came out well, dont hold me accountable if this ends up breaking your circuits or if it doesn't go very well, im not sure the theory is behind these mods but they worked for me

the circuits points of interest:
(http://i40.tinypic.com/2jaxjxy.jpg)

1) you can take a lead from that yellow point on the intensity pot, then attach that to the center lug of a delay time pot on a delay pedal(works for three of my delay pedals in a row, probably works with a flanger's "manual" pot....)  this is loads of fun! im sure you can imagine if youve ever found yourself spinning delay time knob instead of playing guitar, but now you have your cake and eat it!

2)Instead of the blended output,(which I think doesn't come out very well, probably needs some signal buffers) I made three separate outputs from the highlighted points on the LPBPHP switch, this is so that the HP and LP signals can be combined on a mixer to get a notch filter also known as band stop(again you need to send it to a mixer, or through buffered pedals, to get them to combine well) so all in all theres 4 outputs, clean, hp, bp, lp,

with these outputs isolated, the blend pot and LP/BP/HP selector are no longer in use, allowing for THIS MOD:


3) disconnect the lead from the sensitivity pot(highlighted in the pic),
and connect it to the highlighted blend pot lead(dont disconnect the blend pot lead),

this changes the blend pot so that you can choose to have the envelope sensitivity read the filtered result not the unfiltered signal(but blending back to zero will have it read the unfiltered guitar as in the original), LPBPHP selector chooses which filter signal will go to the sensitivity.

its hard to say what this changes exactly about the effect but it certainly allows for new different sweeps, i find it very usable

now all the knobs and switches are working


4)haven't worked out the specifics but i think the next mod Im doing is an effect loop for the sensitivity portion, in addition to the stock effect loop for the filter portion... this would allow you to get the envelope to be following a guitar with some reverb on it, but then have the filter process the dry signal.
 
seems like this is easily done with an NC jack somewhere around the "send" part of the circuit, but I hope I don't have to cut a trace on the board(that gets ugly!).

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 28, 2011, 02:48:54 PM
Interesting mods. Your delay thing will not work with all delays, but it's a cool use of the envelope.

Can someone confirm the definitive switch positions for the 4 rotary switches? I'm assuming the following from the schematic
 - Range 4 postitions
 - Bandwidth 3 positions
 - Up/Down 2 positions
 - HP/BP/LP 3 positions

Secondly I'm having some trouble with powering the pedal. It's fine on battery, but when I connect it to a 9v power supply it craps out on me - just a very gated signal with no obvious effect. I've checked the wiring of the DC socket with a multimeter and it's fine - is the pedal particularly picky on voltage or current? I'm using the AMZ power supply (http://www.muzique.com/tech/power2.htm) and it's delivering just a shade under 9v (about 8.9).

Your switches look right. The power thing seems weird. I don't see why this would be that sensitive about the power supply. I've just powered it with a 1-spot. You're sure that the voltages seen at the power pins of the opamps aren't different between battery andd supply power?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 29, 2011, 12:07:06 PM
Guys, i'd really like to have an input on this .. i'm short of ideas and still don't get any envelope.
I received my tayda order today .. i had LM1458 in the list. they sent me MC1458L instead.. i tried with that and it still doesn't work.
Earlier in this thread, Taylor mentions he was not getting any envelope with other opamps than LM1458, but he also says he think any 1458 would work ..
What could i do to track this problem further?
I think i'm not getting enough voltage at the output of the first envelope follower opamp. should i try to increase the 1.8 M resistance there to increase the gain and see it the envelope works?
I also planned to measure the voltage between the diodes and vactrols (led side) legs, to see if there are any voltage variations with the music.
that's the only things i can think of.. any help would be appreciated.
Thanks in advance



Here's the follow up on this:
i'm still tracing the schematic: so far i noticed that :
- when i touch the positive leg of the led, the filter 'changes' and the led slightly lights up (barely seeable and it's an ultra bright blue led). so i guess the vactrols are sensitive to a voltage change around them, but the voltage doesn't change with normal use
- I traced the signal around the first half of the LM1458: if i touch the legs of the resistor and diode in the feedback loop, the filter triggers and i hear the music played through the pedal being filtered .. yay.
playing with that i noticed that sensitivity and attach pots seem to work correctly.

However i have questions about the decay pot:
on the schematic, is connected to the attack pot, and then to a 1.5K resistor to ground, with the middle lug of the pot being sent between the pot and the resistor. But i really don't see it happening on the pcb. is that normal? In fact, i have the impression that the 1.K5 resistor is placed BEFORE the decay pot, connected to 5 of the op amp, and that after that it goes to the outer lug of the decay pot, and that the other 2 pins of that pot are not connected to anything = ground plane? Right?
anyway, this seems to work when i use it so i'll make the hypothesis that it works...

the second half of the opamp circuit reacts well to probing, i can hear the filter change when it's probed, and it follows the schematic : pins 6 and 7 are connected. through the 330 k resistor, i go to the intensity pot which works very well, which goes to the direction up/down rotary switch.
3 lugs here : the upper one makes the same audio effect as when i touch pin 7 of the opamp. outer lug seems to be ground, inner lug makes a loud pop.. seems to be 9V.. everything ok so far.
It goes to the LEDs of the vactrols and indicator LED.. which doesn't light up ..
I don't really get what the problem is ...
voltage difference between the 2 legs of the indicator LED says 1.65V, isn't it enough to fire the LED up ? It's an ultra bright blue led, i googled the forward voltage of these it seems to be 2.8V, so it would be normal if it doesn't light up. The data sheet for the vactrols says 2.0 volts forward voltage.. so i guess if it have 1.65 volts, it's only normal that i don't have any filtering effect.
Maybe it's VERY opamp dependent? i tried with TL072 and the voltage between the LED lugs is 1.80, hearable change in the sound out of the circuit...

I just don't get why this voltage  between the LED lugs doesn't change with the envelope of the signal.... i guess it's the point, right? So if the voltage doesn't change it would mean theres a problem forward that i haven't found with all this process..
but i don't really know what more i could do.. do you have any advices? i'm a bit lost right now :s
...

Thanks in advance..
sorry for the long posts with all the details, but i hope someone can point out a problem i overlooked if i give all the details .. it's getting frustrating... and interesting to trace Taylor's pcb point to point :)

Looking forward to hear from you guys.. don't let me alone with this.. i'm only beginning :p

Peace,



Hello Taylor,
Here's an update on my debugging of thus build:
I'm playing music from my computer into the effect as i probe is, so i can hear what's happening with AC voltages and not be fooled by the cap thing :)
summary of symptoms:
I get bypassed sound and processed sound.
I can filter the sound with blend, intensity, colour, range, HP/BL/LP/ and UP/DOWN.
The filter is 'fixed' i can't hear any envelope following effect. it currently acts as a rather cool sounding fixed filter.
The LED does not ever light up (but does when i probe certain components, so it's wired correctly)
things not producing a hearable change in sound when tweaked: decay, attack, sensitivity, bandwidth (pretty much the entire circuit block around the LM1458)
reminder: until my tayda order is not here, i'm using a MC1458p instead of the LM1458.. pinout is the same... can't tell about the rest. changing that will be the first thing i do when i receive the right opamp.

When i touch the pin 14 of the TL074, i hear a POP. this pop is also hearable at the via to the second layer: one of the diodes legs next to the TL074. I still have a sound at the other side of the via, and the same pop when i touch the + leg of the middle 10uF cap under the sensitivity pot. So far it seems to be ok since it follows the schematic (without the 10uF cap). From what i read of the schematic: the minus leg of the 10uF pot should then go to
- send
- left lug of sensitivity (near the center of the pcb)
If i touch these components: i hear the volume of the music lower, i guess i'm sucking voltages out of the effect. they seem connected all react the same way, so far so good.
Following the schematic: sensitivity controls the volume of the sound coming into the envelope section, so i should hear something if i probe the middle lug, and i do.
Signal then goes to the 4.7 k resistor which is i guess right under the 3 10uF caps under sensitivity. the lug on the outer side of the pcb which is connected to sensitivity lower the signal too.
The other leg of the 4.7 resistor doesn't produce anything hearable.. and it goes right to the middle lug of the bandwidth switch.. which doesn't work at all....
I tried reflowing the components, doesn't change anything. multimeter says the resistor is 4.7k so is the resistance between the outer lug of the resistance and the middle lug of bandwidth. With i turn bandwidth, it connect either to the lower pad which is connected to the circuit or to the other connected pad, with 4.7 resistance between it and middle lug of sensitivity. so i guess theres signal coming through the resistor (or through another path around the rest of the circuit??  But the changes of having 4.6k exactly seem very low to me) For this reason id say the soldering is ok. And i guess the problem lies ahead.

I'll continue this later. if anybody have an advice on what i have done so far, i'd be glad to follow any ideas :)



Thanks for pointing out that cap missing from the schematic. It's connected between pin 14 and the sensitivity pot.

Capacitors block DC voltages, so yes it's normal that there would be a DC voltage on what side and not the other side.

Again, IMO (having built probably 500 pedals and done a fair amount of debugging) audio probing gets to the heart of the matter much faster than voltages. If you have sound coming out of pin 14 but no sound at the center pad of the bandwidth switch, then that narrows it down to just a couple of components. Try reflowing all of those pads.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 29, 2011, 03:25:41 PM
However i have questions about the decay pot:
on the schematic, is connected to the attack pot, and then to a 1.5K resistor to ground, with the middle lug of the pot being sent between the pot and the resistor. But i really don't see it happening on the pcb. is that normal? In fact, i have the impression that the 1.K5 resistor is placed BEFORE the decay pot, connected to 5 of the op amp,

Parts that are in series work no matter the order in which they're placed. It seems I reversed the order of these parts on the board but not in the schem, which I can see could be confusing, but in terms of the functioning of the circuit it's exactly the same.

Last I remember, you had no sound happening after the bandwidth switch. Did you ever get sound into the envelope sensing portion of the circuit? If you have it at one side of a part, but not on the other side of that part when sound should be there, either you have a bad solder joint, or the signal is being shorted somewhere accidentally, usually ground. Find the point where sound stops and reflow all joints, check for continuity to ground where there shouldn't be any, and try jumpering over parts that don't seem to be working to see if that changes things.

If you do have audio going into the 1458 but nothing coming out, then perhaps the opamp really is the culprit, but I think any 1458 should work.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 29, 2011, 04:21:27 PM
Hey Taylor, thanks for your help,
I did not had sound at the band witch switch because i did not input AC signal into it, as you said, the cap blocks the DC voltages so the probe does only a really small noise on the following pars  on my pcb. However, if i play music through the effect while i probe it, I have sound everywhere on the envelope circuit. While touching the envelope follower part with the probe, i can actually hear the envelope trigger when i touch them.
It's as if the envelope follower worked, but the sound from the input was not hot enough to trigger it. When i do that the LED does light up too , very lightly.

I reflowed every component of this part of the pcb, one by one...
Does it ring a bell for you?


However i have questions about the decay pot:
on the schematic, is connected to the attack pot, and then to a 1.5K resistor to ground, with the middle lug of the pot being sent between the pot and the resistor. But i really don't see it happening on the pcb. is that normal? In fact, i have the impression that the 1.K5 resistor is placed BEFORE the decay pot, connected to 5 of the op amp,

Parts that are in series work no matter the order in which they're placed. It seems I reversed the order of these parts on the board but not in the schem, which I can see could be confusing, but in terms of the functioning of the circuit it's exactly the same.

Last I remember, you had no sound happening after the bandwidth switch. Did you ever get sound into the envelope sensing portion of the circuit? If you have it at one side of a part, but not on the other side of that part when sound should be there, either you have a bad solder joint, or the signal is being shorted somewhere accidentally, usually ground. Find the point where sound stops and reflow all joints, check for continuity to ground where there shouldn't be any, and try jumpering over parts that don't seem to be working to see if that changes things.

If you do have audio going into the 1458 but nothing coming out, then perhaps the opamp really is the culprit, but I think any 1458 should work.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 29, 2011, 08:49:19 PM
Do you have the optocouplers in right? The side with the plus symbol is the LED side. The other side is the resistor. Make sure you have them in the right sides and that the positive side of the LED part is where the + symbol is.

If they're in right, then while playing sound into the pedal check if the resistance across the resistor side is changing with the input dynamics.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on November 30, 2011, 03:50:52 AM
Hello Taylor, thanks for your help ..
They seem to be places correctly: I have the VTL5C3 that you mentioned on the building list, so if they are placed correctly, the writing symbols over them are facing the PCB so the plus side of the led goes closer to the bandwith switch.

i measure 38.9k between the legs of the resistor side of the octocoupler. That value doesn't change at all with the input dynamics.
The voltage between the LED legs is 1.58 V and doesn't change at all with input dynamics too ..

I also tried to clip a direct lead from the 9v to the + side of the LED, with a 4.7k resistor between the two. the LED lights up, and the filter changes when the led gets enough voltage to light up. i tried playing with the controls while turning the led on and off intermittently: the attack, decay and intensity pots seem to be working. . can't hear anything change when the bandwith switch is being turned around though.. is it a normally big change or rather subtle?

so the octocoupler part seems to work ok.

So i guess the problem still ahead in the envelope part.. i rechecked the values of all resistors of this part of the circuit, just to be sure, they are ok.
If you have another suggestion/idea of something to check i'll gladly take it
Many thanks for your help on this Taylor!



Do you have the optocouplers in right? The side with the plus symbol is the LED side. The other side is the resistor. Make sure you have them in the right sides and that the positive side of the LED part is where the + symbol is.

If they're in right, then while playing sound into the pedal check if the resistance across the resistor side is changing with the input dynamics.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: digi2t on December 05, 2011, 08:40:39 PM
I'm just wondering if someone can confirm that this project will work with an MC1458. I've had the same thing happen to me as add4, got MC1458's, instead of LM1458.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on December 05, 2011, 10:59:03 PM
In my next Mouser order I'll get some of the MC1458 and test them in my known-working board.

But, I'm looking at the datasheets for these chips, and if the equivalent schematics are to be believed, they are identical internally. It seems somewhat unlikely that they could be different enough to not work. But, since I believe the envelope detector is using the opamps near their limits of operation, perhaps chip tolerances are such that some units will work and others won't, even of the same exact part number. That would be pretty frustrating. I'll have to check it out.

It's also worth mentioning that this circuit is a little hard to use at first. Probably everybody tweaked the knobs and switches in every possible permutation before deciding it wasn't working, but I just thought I'd mention that. It's possible to set it in ways where it doesn't do much.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: karter2000 on December 06, 2011, 02:03:42 AM
I got my Meat Sphere done today, and while everything went together well my wet signal is very weak or quiet.  I get lots of dry or clean, but not much wet, even at 100% wet.  Has that happened to anyone before?

EDIT: Ok, did some messing around, and obviously I have the send and return incorrectly hooked up.  I plugged a cable into the send and receive, and I didn't get signal with the cable in or out.  However, when I pulled the return plug out just slightly, the pedal seemed to work as it should.  I'm using a switching jack like in the build docs, and I'm pretty sure I've got things hooked up as per the diagram.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on December 06, 2011, 04:38:00 AM
Just a follow up on this .. so i plugged the effect again this morning, and thought i'd try tweaking all the knobs while playing music through it, and ..... it works!!
I haven't changed anything since last time i tweaked it .. i guess it was working but  the intensity, attach and decay switch weren't high enough to make it work properly ...
Thanks a million Taylor for taking the time to help me with this..
i also confirm that is does work with the MC1458, even if i don't know if it works correctly :-)
this pedal makes a LOT of wierd noises, it's actually not easy to dial in a straight - in your face envelope filter tone without tweaking it a bit.
List of questions i have and would have confirmed by other builders:
- I find that the intensity and color pots have to be kept very high to hear anything happening.
- I also think i might have some trouble with the up/down switch on of the positions clearly doesn't behave as well at the other with the switch all the way to the left it behaves as i imagine it should. when i turn it right, i get a very bassy sound, and no envelope again ... might have to check the connections there.
- the LED still doesn't light up too .. I might definitely have a problem with the up/down switch !
- the band witch switch does do ... something .. but i'm not really sure what :) with the moog mod it does some weird bubbling effects that are not happening in the other positions so it does work :)
- I get a kind of oscillating wobbling filter sound on some settings .. like the envelope triggers back and forth randomy when a chord rings.. does that sound normal?
i guess theres still things to tweak.. but this is already encouraging!


Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on December 06, 2011, 07:05:26 AM
Just a follow up on this .. so i plugged the effect again this morning, and thought i'd try tweaking all the knobs while playing music through it, and ..... it works!!

- I get a kind of oscillating wobbling filter sound on some settings .. like the envelope triggers back and forth randomy when a chord rings.. does that sound normal?
i guess theres still things to tweak.. but this is already encouraging!



Glad to hear that it is working finally. When i first plugged my guitar into mine i thought that it is not working but then i strummed a chord hard enough to make the envelope work and it came to life.

Mine does that wobbly thing too with chords, i think it is because it can't track the signal well enough.

Here are some settings i've found somewhere on the net:

Quote
All settings have the trigger on Full and the filter at Low-Pass. The settings for the filter are Hi, Mid-Hi, Mid-Low, and Low (just to differentiate them).

 Nice Autowah - Really liquidy and almost Bootsy-esque. I use this setting the most. If you're getting crazy peaks and it's making a lot of noise, try turning down the sensitivity first, and then the colour.

 Sensitivity - Max
 Attack - Min
 Decay - 10 o'clock
 colour - max
 intensity - max
 blend - max
 trigger - UP
 Filter - Mid-Hi

 Mu-Tron Sound - You gotta adjust the Decay to taste on this one. It cops a pretty good Mu-Tron sound here though. Dynamics and how hard you hit and how you pluck the strings will really affect how this sounds.

 Sensitivity - Max
 Attack - Min
 Decay - 12 o'clock to 1 o'clock
 colour - max
 intensity - max
 blend - max
 trigger - DOWN
 filter - Mid-Hi

 Nick Fyffe of Jamiroquai Tone - This is the setting he used on Jamiroquai's - A Funk Odyyssey (songs Little L and Main Vein) since he used a Meatball. It's kinda like a submarine funk sound.

 Sensitivity - Max
 Attack - Min
 Decay - 1 o'clock to 2 o'clock
 colour - max
 intensity - 12 o'clcok
 blend - * (there should be a * marking at about 1-2 o'clock, put the knob there)
 trigger - DOWN
 filter - Mid-Hi

 Dubby Space Deep Filters - These are like the manual setting for the DOWN filter. Except a little deeper and spacyier.

 Sensitivity - Max
 Attack - Min
 Decay - 9 o'clock to Max (the more the longer it will take to close the filter)
 colour - Max (you might need to ease this back if you get a lot of intense peaks, bass or feedback)
 intensity - max
 blend - max
 trigger - DOWN
 filter - Mid-Low


edit: btw i think i gonna label my pots different than on the Meatball, colour=resonance, intensity=envelope depth, this way it makes more sense to me
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ringworm on December 07, 2011, 05:52:36 AM
It sounds like this pcb has all the same quirks that the original Meatball had. I pitched in on an old thread in which the original pedal was cloned as people wanted to build it with on-board pots and switches.
It's here: http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=54508.0
It's worth a read for people trying to get used to playing this pedal and understanding what each control does (or doesn't do) It can take a few weeks to really get to grips with it. Leds not lighting, reverse sweep sounding odd, ripple (swirling noise), uselessness of the colour pot (when left unmodded, in fact even when modded I always left it at full) and weak filter activation were all symptomatic of the original Meatball pedal, never mind the many diy clones that were built. It's that sensitive to guitar output that I remember putting a new set of strings on mine even helped with triggering the filter, I also built the tonepad micro-amp project to put in front of it to get it really going.
I never got round to boxing it up but this pcb might twist my arm!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on December 10, 2011, 08:21:18 AM
Where would you guys connect an external LFO to the circuit? I realized that i like the Meatball's filter sound than more than other filters i've made so i want to control it with an LFO instead of other filters.

I'd put it after the envelope detector but i am not exactly sure where is a good place for that on the PCB.

Sadly since this PCB have more layers i can't really follow it to match the schematics.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: daverdave on December 11, 2011, 07:22:07 AM
If you want to drive the filter with an LFO instead of the envelope detector, just drive the optocouplers with an LFO instead.
Drive the LED side of the vatrols with the lfo, I'd say just before the up down switch, using an spst to switch in the lfo.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on December 11, 2011, 01:30:01 PM
If you want to drive the filter with an LFO instead of the envelope detector, just drive the optocouplers with an LFO instead.
Drive the LED side of the vatrols with the lfo, I'd say just before the up down switch, using an spst to switch in the lfo.

Thanks!

Here is a mod in exchange for my next question: :icon_biggrin:

If you want to make the filter easier to trigger, lower the 4K7 resistor connected to the Sensitivity pot. Alternatively raising the Sens pot's value can be useful too.
It is 1k in mine at the moment, you can go lower.
(when you crank the sens pot it forms 10k/4k7 voltage divider with that resistor, so ~1/3 of your guitar signal is still gets grounded but if you lower the resistors value down to like 1k you get only 1/10 loss.)

And the question: How to get more resonance out of the filter? I think changing the value of that 1k5 resistor connected to the colour pot can be the key. I wouldn't mind if the resonance could go up to oscillation. Maybe i should remove that 1k5 resistor to break the connection?

And a bonus question: (i will mod this all the way to Meat Sphere MKII :icon_biggrin:)
If i want to achieve a slower filter attack response is it enough to raise the value of that 10uF electrolyte after the Attack pot?
(btw i am not sure if my attack pot does anything at all, i can hear what the decay does though)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: daverdave on December 11, 2011, 04:23:25 PM
I've had a few beers, but 'll try and answer.

Lowering the 4.7k resistor increased the gain of the precision rectifier, but it's already pretty high. Opamps lose alot of gain at higher frequencies, so setting the gain for 1800 may not give you that exact gain, the amplified signal will be whatever frequency you've pumped into the recifier. I guess you're only interested in the fundamental to integrate but someone else probably can give a better idea of the flaws with this. I've open looped recifiers before to get maximum sensitivity, so the opamp acts like a comparator, works ok but you lose all sensitivity (well I did).

Just had a quick look in the ol' active filter cookbook by Don Lancaster (great book), as I see it, the colour pot is changing the damping by controling the amount of positive feedback fed back, the 1.5k resistor is limiting the voltage divider to a certain ratio above zero, I'm guessing changing it won't have a great affect but give it a shot, it's always worth a try. When I mess with sallen keys I always do a similar thing when using a volateg divider as a Q control. You could try and increase R20, which should give you more gain through the filter, only a bit, to 1.2k or somet. Might just oscillate like crazy or do nothing for whatever reason, more gain means more positive feedbvack and a higher Q value so it's worth a shot. I don't know the state variable filter thatn well.

As for longer attack times, increasing the 10u cap should give a slower attack as it will take longer to charge through the resistor, but I don't know how much. The reason for the attack not having much affect when the pot is turned up is for the current losses across the resistor I think. There are ways of getting a slower attack whilst maintaining the triggering, but they involve using more components, depends how many more parts you're willing to include.

Hiope this helps.

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: electrosonic on December 19, 2011, 12:22:31 AM
Sorry if it has been answered, but what is the purpose of the diodes in the feedback loop of the first stage?

Andrew.

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: charmonder on December 22, 2011, 11:59:12 AM
- I get a kind of oscillating wobbling filter sound on some settings .. like the envelope triggers back and forth randomy when a chord rings.. does that sound normal?
i guess theres still things to tweak.. but this is already encouraging!

Mine does that wobbly thing too with chords, i think it is because it can't track the signal well enough.
edit: btw i think i gonna label my pots different than on the Meatball, colour=resonance, intensity=envelope depth, this way it makes more sense to me

Is it kind of the sound like a sewage drain gargling water?(but on mars of course!) if we're talking about the same wobbley sound, I'm about 99% sure that  its that the guitar signal is getting clipped on its way to the envelope, even though it doesnt sound clipped in the filter's audio path. so there's nothing wrong with the circuit, its just too much signal. sometimes this is a desired effect, like the roland funny cat.  if you've included the effect loop a good solution is to use a limiter (or compressor on limiter setting)
(http://i42.tinypic.com/10gbcm1.jpg)
you can substitute limiter for compressor, or maybe soft clipping distortion/OD, but limiter will be the best at preserving dynamics without putting wobble on chords. probably a good simple pedal for this situation is mxr dynacomp. maybe if theres a simple limiter circuit it would actually do wonders in place of the "bandwidth" control, I don't really get much use out of the band width maybe its helpful on bass

the only problem though is that now the "clean" side of the blend knob exports the limiter sound, where as itd probably be more useful if it exported the sound of the fx chain going into return the jack. which seems like an easy mod, BUT you'll need a buffer for these two signals to actually mix. I haven't actually done this mod YET so beware that it might not work(seems like it should though! so first get a buffer circuit (http://www.generalguitargadgets.com/projects/15/74-simple-ic-buffer), then take another lead from the return jack, wire it to the buffer input, then use a lead from the buffer output to replace the first lug of the blend pot. I think this should improve the blend knob in normal guitar--->meatball-->amp situations.

but then again the lack of buffers in the circuitry has its charm.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: charmonder on December 22, 2011, 12:34:22 PM
List of questions i have and would have confirmed by other builders:
- I find that the intensity and color pots have to be kept very high to hear anything happening.
somewhat agree,  but I find in bandpass mode intensity usually has to be very low for me to even hear anything
- I also think i might have some trouble with the up/down switch on of the positions clearly doesn't behave as well at the other with the switch all the way to the left it behaves as i imagine it should. when i turn it right, i get a very bassy sound, and no envelope again ... might have to check the connections there.
yes! I have the same difficulty so its possible theres anything wrong with your circuits. unless you can never get one of those two positions to work. hundreds of times now Ive been convinced that UP mode was not working, its like the "sweet spots" for a knob are only relative to other knobs, and then ALL these relationships change when switching between UP or DOWN mode. and even that change depends on what signal is going into the box. /cathy.
 (http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_criTrWubGmM/SRRg_ZNbuYI/AAAAAAAAAWY/RnZd-R1XWiU/s320/Cathy+ACK!!.jpg)

- the LED still doesn't light up too .. I might definitely have a problem with the up/down switch !
the LED is tricky! I never figured it out, for the one of my meatspheres where the LED seems to work, it never works for any of the good filter settings!
- the band witch switch does do ... something .. but i'm not really sure what :) with the moog mod it does some weird bubbling effects that are not happening in the other positions so it does work :)
this takes the highs out of the signal going to the envelope, like rolling back the guitar tone knob. when you find a good setting overall, try switching between Half and Full, you should notice that the filter responds to the bassier notes better in Half mode. you might also use Half mode to get smoother attack shapes.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on December 23, 2011, 02:11:59 AM
very interesting .. thanks .
i'm still trying to find a way to make the envelope work before boxing it ..

List of questions i have and would have confirmed by other builders:
- I find that the intensity and color pots have to be kept very high to hear anything happening.
somewhat agree,  but I find in bandpass mode intensity usually has to be very low for me to even hear anything
- I also think i might have some trouble with the up/down switch on of the positions clearly doesn't behave as well at the other with the switch all the way to the left it behaves as i imagine it should. when i turn it right, i get a very bassy sound, and no envelope again ... might have to check the connections there.
yes! I have the same difficulty so its possible theres anything wrong with your circuits. unless you can never get one of those two positions to work. hundreds of times now Ive been convinced that UP mode was not working, its like the "sweet spots" for a knob are only relative to other knobs, and then ALL these relationships change when switching between UP or DOWN mode. and even that change depends on what signal is going into the box. /cathy.
 (http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_criTrWubGmM/SRRg_ZNbuYI/AAAAAAAAAWY/RnZd-R1XWiU/s320/Cathy+ACK!!.jpg)

- the LED still doesn't light up too .. I might definitely have a problem with the up/down switch !
the LED is tricky! I never figured it out, for the one of my meatspheres where the LED seems to work, it never works for any of the good filter settings!
- the band witch switch does do ... something .. but i'm not really sure what :) with the moog mod it does some weird bubbling effects that are not happening in the other positions so it does work :)
this takes the highs out of the signal going to the envelope, like rolling back the guitar tone knob. when you find a good setting overall, try switching between Half and Full, you should notice that the filter responds to the bassier notes better in Half mode. you might also use Half mode to get smoother attack shapes.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on December 23, 2011, 05:12:41 AM
I've had a few beers, but 'll try and answer.

Lowering the 4.7k resistor increased the gain of the precision rectifier, but it's already pretty high. Opamps lose alot of gain at higher frequencies, so setting the gain for 1800 may not give you that exact gain, the amplified signal will be whatever frequency you've pumped into the recifier. I guess you're only interested in the fundamental to integrate but someone else probably can give a better idea of the flaws with this. I've open looped recifiers before to get maximum sensitivity, so the opamp acts like a comparator, works ok but you lose all sensitivity (well I did).

Just had a quick look in the ol' active filter cookbook by Don Lancaster (great book), as I see it, the colour pot is changing the damping by controling the amount of positive feedback fed back, the 1.5k resistor is limiting the voltage divider to a certain ratio above zero, I'm guessing changing it won't have a great affect but give it a shot, it's always worth a try. When I mess with sallen keys I always do a similar thing when using a volateg divider as a Q control. You could try and increase R20, which should give you more gain through the filter, only a bit, to 1.2k or somet. Might just oscillate like crazy or do nothing for whatever reason, more gain means more positive feedbvack and a higher Q value so it's worth a shot. I don't know the state variable filter thatn well.

As for longer attack times, increasing the 10u cap should give a slower attack as it will take longer to charge through the resistor, but I don't know how much. The reason for the attack not having much affect when the pot is turned up is for the current losses across the resistor I think. There are ways of getting a slower attack whilst maintaining the triggering, but they involve using more components, depends how many more parts you're willing to include.

Hiope this helps.



I swapped the 10u cap with a 100uf one. It made the decay slower but did not affected the attack. Someone told me on an other forum that i should use a 500k pot for the attack pot instead of the stock 5k pot.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: daverdave on December 23, 2011, 08:51:39 AM
Increasing the pot will stop the evelope triggering as the higher resistance will allow only a tiny current to pass, there's hardly any current there anyhow.

It's not a circuit that can achieve long attack times really, the losses you'll incure by increasing the attack pot just will mean a more useless travel on the pot.

There are other types of follower circuits that can acheive slower attack times, but are generally more complex.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on December 24, 2011, 03:22:47 AM
Increasing the pot will stop the evelope triggering as the higher resistance will allow only a tiny current to pass, there's hardly any current there anyhow.

It's not a circuit that can achieve long attack times really, the losses you'll incure by increasing the attack pot just will mean a more useless travel on the pot.

There are other types of follower circuits that can acheive slower attack times, but are generally more complex.

Ok, i am actually thinking about going back to the stock cap because i've found some cases where consecutive fast notes couldn't "retrigger" the envelope follower. (even on the fastest decay setting)
Btw i've sent some synths through the pedal and it worked pretty good with the different volume ADSR settings i used on the synths.
Sadly now i want a standalone ADSR generator which can be retriggered by my pic attack and i would use that to control the brightness of the LEDs in the vactrols of the pedal. :icon_rolleyes:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: giantrobot on January 07, 2012, 06:31:22 PM
Hey guys! I just finished the Meatsphere and it sound pretty awesome but I have a wee problem. For some reason when I turn the Up/Down switch to up position my LED turns off. Sup wit dat? I'm new to DIY so excuse my noobishness
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on January 11, 2012, 08:01:13 AM
the led is an indicator of the envelope "position"

in up, its off, then gets brighter the more the evelope is "opened" (becoming more trebley) ie by picking harder
in down, its on, meaning fully "open" , then goes off, representing the filter "closing" (becoming more bassy) when you pick

hope that helps. Its normal.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ottopit on January 12, 2012, 06:26:47 PM
Hi,

Having a bit of trouble with this build... no effect and weak signal, to make matters worse I ended up burning up the plated area where the positive leg of the LED goes because my iron was too hot. My question is can I add the jump to the +9V on the board or is there something more specific it needs to go like close to one of the Vactrol? Sorry for the total beginner questions not that great at following(or understanding) the schematic yet.

     
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on January 12, 2012, 06:46:55 PM
The LED gets switched to different spots by the up/down switch, so you can't just connect to 9v or ground, but you can follow where the traces go pretty easily on the board.

The POS pad goes to the RLED right pad, the other goes to the negative LED legs of the optocouplers. Just verify visually where it's connected and you can run a wire to whichever pad got burned up.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ottopit on January 12, 2012, 06:51:27 PM
Just to add to the above. If looking at the schematic and tracing the audio path so it would go in-> 470n cap-> pin 12 of the TL074->pin 14

then, this is where I get confused, does it break of and go through send -> sensitivity 10k -> SW1 bandwidth (3) ->no connection, 470n or 22n -> LM1458 pin 2 than 3  etc..  Not sure if Im on the right track here and when it goes through send is the only time its hitting the LM1458?

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ottopit on January 12, 2012, 06:59:56 PM
The LED gets switched to different spots by the up/down switch, so you can't just connect to 9v or ground, but you can follow where the traces go pretty easily on the board.

The POS pad goes to the RLED right pad, the other goes to the negative LED legs of the optocouplers. Just verify visually where it's connected and you can run a wire to whichever pad got burned up.

Thanks Taylor, I ordered another pcb from you today 'cause I'm Jones'n for this effect so figure I might divide and conquer ;D I guess I wasn't looking close enough because I assumed the path to the rled was just negative only.

Probably a really dumb question but would it make a difference for my volume issues if there was no LED connected? I know the Vactrols have I guess use it to indicate the level of envelope from what I've read above, but should it completely kill the signal. Just wondering how much importance it has if I just jumper it for now to focus on the lack of volume and effect, I never could get it to light before I ended up burning the pad anyway. 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on January 12, 2012, 07:23:07 PM
The LED just lights up to show the envelope action, so if you don't need it just leave it out and do not jumper it. It won't affect the sound or functioning of the pedal at all besides having no LED to look at.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DavidM on January 14, 2012, 05:04:28 PM
Hi all,
Have a question that has been asked before to no reply. What is the purpose of those diodes in antiparallel at the very beginning?.

Thanks,

David
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ottopit on January 15, 2012, 04:13:43 PM
When I probe this with an audio probe, the sound is the right level from input to the first 1.5k resistor but from the other side of the resistor to anything else in the audio path the sound is really faint I have to crank my amp to hear it, I tested for continuity on that 1.5k and it was fine but I'll reflow or replace it anyway.
 Just wondering if anyone has ever probed this audio path can you confirm if the level is supposed to drop that quickly(or at all) and maybe where in the circuit it would get loud again. 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ottopit on January 16, 2012, 01:36:21 PM
Okay after careful examination of the parts I installed on the board it looks like I put a 1.8 Ohm resistor in place of
the 1M8 resistor  :icon_redface:  maybe that explains why the sound drops so significantly after the 1.5k resistor since thats the next component after (God I hope so!) I'll try to source some from my local electronics shop. 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: slacker on January 16, 2012, 02:02:38 PM
Have a question that has been asked before to no reply. What is the purpose of those diodes in antiparallel at the very beginning?.

The diodes are to protect the opamp inputs, these can be damaged if something causes the voltage on them to be different by more than a certain amount. It's drawn with the diodes between the output and + input, but as the output is connected directly to the - input, the diodes are also connected between the two inputs.  The diodes mean the two inputs can never be different by more than 0.6 volts. I don't really understand this and I'm not sure what it protects against. In normal use the diodes don't do anything.

Google "opamp differential input protection" if you want some more information, or someone here who knows what they're talking about might be able to provide a better explanation.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on January 16, 2012, 02:04:44 PM
Okay after careful examination of the parts I installed on the board it looks like I put a 1.8 Ohm resistor in place of
the 1M8 resistor  :icon_redface:  maybe that explains why the sound drops so significantly after the 1.5k resistor since thats the next component after (God I hope so!) I'll try to source some from my local electronics shop. 

Ah, yes that'll definitely do it! Those resistors form a voltage divider, and with those values you're nearly muting the sound. Glad you found the source of the issue.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DavidM on January 16, 2012, 09:19:14 PM
Thanks for your reply, Slacker. So better to leave them there.

OT: Still owe you my progress on the dry output for the EchoBase. Will let you know when I am done.

Best,

Dave
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ottopit on January 17, 2012, 12:09:43 AM
Cool repacing the 1M8  solved my audio issues, I had some other external factors that stopped the effect from happening but for now I have it up and running! Man its cool!
So glad to have it working I've been playing with it for hours (taking a break right now but will be back at it, heheh)

The other issues I had, were that I had a problem with the send /return jacks, something was shorting out or not wired quite right, so I just wired the send to return for now;The other problem or at least I suspect  was using my AMZ power supply I built, during which I used an L7812cp instead of the 7809cp regulator for more headroom and I guess was feeding it too much voltage and was getting little to no effect  I then put it in my "sag"output on AMZ that was giving out around 6 volts or so and this thing sprang to life in a very good way! I then put it in my Power Pedal with around 9 volts or so and the effect was there but not as good as  the Sag output.

I guess I will continue on and get the send/return jacks going, then hopefully get the Led running, try the Moog mod and the Colour mod which is what I'll probably do next.I really learned quite a bit from this experience...shout out to Taylor for getting this on a killer board.

Next up after this will be a Ugly Face, then maybe Taylor's Tap Tremolo and then eventually the Skyripper...man I'm getting %^&*y now! :icon_twisted:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on January 17, 2012, 03:58:59 AM
Cool, glad you got it sorted. Those eureka moments are always exciting.  :D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ottopit on January 19, 2012, 12:27:02 AM
Just a little update...So seems my build has a wider or more "sound options" with under 9 volts I had an outputs that were around 12-14 volts
and i would definitely get different sounds but it seemed easy to "choke" off the whole signal in places I guess gated is a better word.
I setup the colour mod and that really does give you more range on that pot and as someone stated earlier should be manadatory. I'm planning on doing the moog
switch next.
The only thing i couldn't get working yet (besides the LED) and seems like it should be a no brainer is the send/return, I cannot get signal to passthrough
no matter what i try. I have a mono jack for the send and a stereo for the return. So like the build pdf says I go from Send pad to Tip on Send jack then
wire from Send tip to Return ring and Return Tip goes to Return pad, pretty simple but when I probe I get signal all the way from the Send pad->Send Tip->
Return Ring and thats as far as it goes probing the return tip and pad = no sound. I re-melted both of those points many times, even tried a brand new stereo jack
nothing just for the hell of it i switched send and return tips to pad connections still nothing. This has got to be something I'm overlooking but it's driving me crazy  :icon_eek: .
So for now I just bypass it.
i'm starting to get used to how these pots interact with the switchs and getting some consistent sounds, man it sounds great especially with delay ( i run a wet/dry/wet rig)
I can play for hours with this thing it puts me in a trace it really is audio nirvana  :icon_lol:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ottopit on January 19, 2012, 12:57:21 AM
Just curious Has anyone ever tried or thought through what it would take to add a TAP tempo  to something like this?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DavidM on January 19, 2012, 08:41:53 AM
Hi Ottopit,

You want to use a jack with a "cut" lug (not a stereo jack, though of course there are stereo jacks with cut).

The cut will be in contact with the "tip" lug when there is no plug in the jack. That would be the "normal" behavior.

WHen you insert a jack, the cut lug detaches itself from the "live" tip.

With a multimeter (or even a continuity tester) and some reasoning, you should get it going in 5 mins tops :)

BEst

D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ottopit on January 20, 2012, 02:56:49 AM
Hi Ottopit,

You want to use a jack with a "cut" lug (not a stereo jack, though of course there are stereo jacks with cut).

The cut will be in contact with the "tip" lug when there is no plug in the jack. That would be the "normal" behavior.

WHen you insert a jack, the cut lug detaches itself from the "live" tip.

With a multimeter (or even a continuity tester) and some reasoning, you should get it going in 5 mins tops :)

BEst

D


thanks didn't know about those even though i have one laying around i bought frm radio shack a long time ago.Well nice to learn new things. Anyway i wired it up and still no sound only this time the audio gets real faint on the send pad on the board.I tested with continuity setting and all the connections checked out. Maybe something is shorting the signal enough to let just a tiny bit through, i had to crank the amp all the way just to hear it.Then of course bypassing the jacks no problem everything works great.I  know im in the home stretch here so I'll keep messing with it, just a matter of time
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Barcode80 on January 20, 2012, 12:59:24 PM
Just curious Has anyone ever tried or thought through what it would take to add a TAP tempo  to something like this?

since it's envelope triggered, I'm not sure what you would be tapping in...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ottopit on January 20, 2012, 01:13:39 PM
Just curious Has anyone ever tried or thought through what it would take to add a TAP tempo  to something like this?

since it's envelope triggered, I'm not sure what you would be tapping in...

I was curious about adding something like this which actually switches between a sample/hold and envelope. Probably too much to change make it work, but I'm a newb so... :icon_rolleyes:
 

http://www.subdecay.com/proteus-auto-filter

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: skylab001 on January 26, 2012, 01:56:26 AM
I had been thinking about building one of these based on another sites info, but this pcb looks superb. There are two mods I'd like to add to it 1) an input for foot control, to play it like a wah, 2) an input jack for an external LFO that automatically controls the sweep. If I had to pick either of those it would be the LFO input, and actually these might be doable from just a single input, either/or. If somebody familiar with the circuit might have some ideas as to where to place the jack I'm all ears. I've been looking over the schematic, and I'm pretty sure I have an idea of where it might go, but it seems like there are some builders that know this circuit pretty well already.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on January 26, 2012, 05:16:22 AM
The sweep of the filter's cutoff frequency is controlled by the two optocouplers' resistor component. The two light-dependent resistors need to change their resistance equally and in the same direction to get the sweep.

The envelope section puts out a DC voltage that changes based on the playing dynamics. So to control the sweep with an external control voltage you'd just need to connect your CV in parallel with the output of the envelope section. It'll be the outer lug of the intensity pot, that's not connected to the 330r resistor. I don't know much about external CV sources, so you may need to play around with voltage dividers to get the sweep in the right range.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: skylab001 on January 27, 2012, 02:07:21 PM
Thanks Taylor, that was about where I was figuring it would go. So out of curiosity, how close does the meat sphere come to the original pedal which it was based on? Has anybody done a side by side?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DavidM on February 04, 2012, 08:48:43 PM
Hi,

I have been comparing the Mu-Tron III schem to the Meatball and noticed the resistors in parallel with the LDRs in the Mu-Tron are both 220K, whereas the Meatball has 220K and 120K.

Any clue about this?

Thanks,

D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: pedalgrinder on February 05, 2012, 07:31:40 AM
It's interesting that there is when i read through the forum pages a bit of a problem with a few of them triggering properly. I've often wondered why on u2b rather than unity with the wire between pins 6,7 put a pot or trimpot so you can adjust the gain a bit higher on the lm1458 i figure they use this for it's naturally high gain in the first place but i keep thinking you could essentially use any op amp if you were able to adjust the gain and turn it up to the desired level that triggers correctly for your set up. I could be way off and iam sure someone has thought of this allready but i couldn't find it within these pages. Has anyone tried adjusting the gain to see if a better trigger happens?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: charmonder on February 05, 2012, 02:12:53 PM
It's interesting that there is when i read through the forum pages a bit of a problem with a few of them triggering properly. I've often wondered why on u2b rather than unity with the wire between pins 6,7 put a pot or trimpot so you can adjust the gain a bit higher on the lm1458 i figure they use this for it's naturally high gain in the first place but i keep thinking you could essentially use any op amp if you were able to adjust the gain and turn it up to the desired level that triggers correctly for your set up. I could be way off and iam sure someone has thought of this allready but i couldn't find it within these pages. Has anyone tried adjusting the gain to see if a better trigger happens?
For what its worth I tried a MC1458 in the place of the lm1458 and it had a very strange result.  It seemed the envelope would never decay. I could only trigger the sweep higher and higher and have to reset the power to get it back down, but maybe I messed something else up...     




I should post my results pretty soon, I made a daughter board with 4 buffers  to allow a better mix knob, ( seems to lose a ton of volume at 50% ). And these buffers allow notch filter and all pass filter


For everyone that wants to add an lfo to the pedal you might take advantage of the two unused positions in the up down switch.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: charmonder on February 05, 2012, 02:16:15 PM

looking at the schematic, is the filtered signal inverted?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thecolorfield on February 10, 2012, 06:49:48 PM
Hey all, this was first build ever and to my surprise I soldered it up, plugged it in and everything sounds great! There is one small thing that is confusing me...For some reason I can't get the LED to light up when the envelope is triggered. I have a 4k7 resistor in the RLED spot and I'm using a 5mm waterclear blue LED. From the pictures on this forum it looks like I just solder the Anode/Cathode right onto the PCB, which i have tried with no luck. But then there's the Build PDF which seems to be saying to solder the Anode to the PCB and the Cathode to the middle lug of the 3PDT switch. I have tired both ways and still no luck....Everything else is fine, but the LED, what am I overlooking?

p.s. I can also report that I used a MC1458L instead of the LM1458 and its working fine.

-Brian
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on February 10, 2012, 06:59:35 PM
If you solder the LED right on the pcb it will light up even when the effect is bypassed this is why you should wire it to the 3PDT like what you've seen on the build document.
I don't know why your LED doesn't work. Try it outside of the circuit only with a battery and a limiting resistor, maybe you have burned it.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thecolorfield on February 10, 2012, 07:10:54 PM
thanks but my understanding of it is correct, right?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on February 10, 2012, 07:38:33 PM
Yes I think that your understanding of it is good but make sure that you have a wire that goes from the cathode to the middle-middle lug and also a wire that goes from the pcb (LED NEG) to the middle-top lug of the 3PDT.
First, check to be sure that your LED is correctly wired according to the build document and make sure that it ain't burned. If it still doesn't light up try a limiting resistor with a value a little bit lower. In my build I used a 3k resistor (clear orange LED) and the light is pretty dim. Maybe 4.7k is to high for your LED in this circuit.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: thecolorfield on February 18, 2012, 01:47:29 PM
sorry I'm new at this, a shorting jack is the same as a switching jack right? Would this work for the return in the MeatSphere?

http://www.mammothelectronics.com/4SJK104M-p/610-1006.htm

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on February 18, 2012, 01:50:37 PM
Yes this is what you need for the return.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on March 24, 2012, 04:51:04 AM
I added the Moog-switch yesterday, it is a must have in my opinion.

I want to add a jack for external DC control signal input. Looking at the schematics, the easiest way to do this is to connect a wire to one of the legs of the intensity pot. (because one of the legs of that pot is connected directly (well, almost, there are two 100ohm resistors between them but they seem necessary) to the LDRs.) (i will use a DMM to find out which is the correct leg)

The question is, will those LDRs survive 8-9V control signals? (i suspect that there is no reason for using signals that strong because that LM1458 probably can't deliver more than 6-7V but i am asking this because i don't want to destroy those LDRs.)

After a second look it seems like that those 100ohm resistors connected to the LED side of the LDR are forming a voltage divider so they are halving the incoming control voltage which is cool because LEDs can take 4,5V i guess. (in worst case)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: SteveFromBerlin on March 27, 2012, 07:08:29 PM
Any update on new PCBs? I can't wait to order this and the Analog Octave Down!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lwatford on April 18, 2012, 05:07:53 AM
 :icon_question:
Any update on new PCBs? I can't wait to order this and the Analog Octave Down!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Beo on April 21, 2012, 11:44:01 PM
How important is it for the two opto's to match closely? I have a bunch of opto's that I'm testing, and even my two NSL32's seem to vary between each other a fair bit.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on April 21, 2012, 11:52:44 PM
I never measured mine and still got good results. I don't think it's critical. I suppose the effect of not having matched parts would be that the resonance will vary somewhat over the frequency sweep, but as this is an effect rather than a diagnostic tool, I don't think that would be noticeable or a bad thing. If you consider that often this type of filter is swept with a dual-gang pot, and that the wafers in a dual pot will vary sometimes 30% across their sweep, it doesn't seem like it's ever an issue for anybody in effects apps.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: villll on April 25, 2012, 08:35:31 AM
Any update on new PCBs? I can't wait to order this and the Analog Octave Down!
News on this? My soldering iron is itching for this one!
Oh yeah should've checked the site first :facepalm:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: SteveFromBerlin on April 25, 2012, 08:37:03 AM
Any update on new PCBs? I can't wait to order this and the Analog Octave Down!
News on this? My soldering iron is itching for this one!

+1!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on May 16, 2012, 05:56:20 PM
Any update on new PCBs? I can't wait to order this and the Analog Octave Down!
News on this? My soldering iron is itching for this one!

+1!

Hey guys, the board is back in stock now.  :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mroenq on May 17, 2012, 11:58:24 AM


Hey guys, the board is back in stock now.  :)

Wonderful  :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: sgmezei on May 19, 2012, 05:50:03 PM
Put this one in my "fail" box for the past couple months as it was not working. A bunch of questions but the most important is:

Will this work with the switches mounted "wrong" on the component side?

(http://img207.imageshack.us/img207/8783/img2566j.jpg) (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/207/img2566j.jpg/)

Uploaded with ImageShack.us (http://imageshack.us)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on May 19, 2012, 06:11:15 PM
Yes, since that type of switch has contacts that are symmetrical, it will work the same with the switches on the wrong side, except of course that the positions will all be backwards.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: teej212 on May 28, 2012, 11:59:51 AM
would it be devestating to use 1.5 meg resistors in place of the 1.8 meg resitors?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on May 28, 2012, 05:01:40 PM
The one connected to pin12 of the TL074 is not critical. The other one sets the gain of the amp in the envelope detector, and I'm not positive how finicky this is as I haven't experimented with it. My guess is that it won't make a noticeable difference.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: teej212 on May 28, 2012, 05:05:38 PM
well the other 1.8 M resistor is only 1M in the Mutron Filter, so I would assume that one is not that important either.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mroenq on June 06, 2012, 02:06:48 PM
Maybe a question that´s already answered but as the dumb Swede I am...

The "Range"-rotary, shall I set it to 3 or 4 amount of turns?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on June 06, 2012, 05:41:17 PM
It should be set for four positions. I did not mark this correctly in my schematic, I realize now.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: albru80 on June 13, 2012, 05:10:06 AM
I've just received my board and I have a stupid question.
I've never used rotary switches and I'm not sure what to do.
Mine have 4 lugs in the center (A,B,C and D).
Am I supposed to solder two together or leave one out?
Which one?

Thanks
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on June 13, 2012, 06:12:55 AM
Sounds like you bought the wrong type.
You want 3p4t (three poles, 4 throws, ie 3 common central pins A B C, and 4 positions for each pin to connect to)
I beleive you probably purchased 4p3t with 4 common pins A B C D

Post a pic for avoidance of doubt
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on June 13, 2012, 08:21:15 AM
Put this one in my "fail" box for the past couple months as it was not working. A bunch of questions but the most important is:
(http://img207.imageshack.us/img207/8783/img2566j.jpg) (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/207/img2566j.jpg/)

Does anyone else notice that the Attack pot is wired wrong? Second from the right in the picture.

EDIT: Nevermind... just noticed that it is used as a variable resistor  :icon_redface:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: albru80 on June 13, 2012, 01:08:50 PM
Thanks LaceSensor. Those I've bought are exactely like those in the picture here:

http://www.musikding.de/Switches/Rotary-Switches/Rotary-switch-3P4T-sealed-pcb::2852.html?XTCsid=5796d2def3358cfc22b4479931d047ed

It says 3P4T and it has 4 lugs in the middle.

Are those wrong?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on June 13, 2012, 02:10:46 PM
Thanks LaceSensor. Those I've bought are exactely like those in the picture here:

http://www.musikding.de/Switches/Rotary-Switches/Rotary-switch-3P4T-sealed-pcb::2852.html?XTCsid=5796d2def3358cfc22b4479931d047ed

It says 3P4T and it has 4 lugs in the middle.

Are those wrong?


It may not be wrong...

That may be a "generic" picture for the website however, even the 3-pole switches WILL have a 4th pole. The 4th pole is just not connected to anything AND it is actually cut flush with the switch bottom at the manufacturer.

Or.... I could be totally wrong!  :icon_eek:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: njkmonty on June 15, 2012, 07:48:08 AM
i just received my pcb from Taylor,, very nice
thank you,
what are the mods worth doing?
just the moog switch  .. and
colour pot resistor mod?

I prefer not to mod because you can, there is already enought switches on this thing, there are a few people who have done this build now, whats Realy worth doing???

also is there any benefit in "matching the pairs of capacitors in line below the " return" solder point on the board?, or would that be a bit "anal"!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on June 15, 2012, 04:37:38 PM
I can't comment on the mods like the Moog switch, as I have not done these on my unit. Hopefully somebody else will chime in on that.

Matching caps would probably allow for a more focused resonance peak since the gain stages would be set up for the same frequency, so if you were interested in making the filter oscillate, it might help, but I did not do any matching. The optocouplers likely will be much more mismatched than the caps will be, so that's the bottleneck.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: albru80 on July 03, 2012, 11:37:12 AM
Hi,

I've built the pedal twice and still doesn't work properly.
The sensitivity Pot and the Bandwidth Switch don't do anything at all.
The volume is there but the effect is very light.
I've hand-picked all the components to get the exact values and I've tried different LM1458's and TL074's.
I've even re-soldered the whole board.
The audio probe doesn't show any problem.
I've tried the boards connecting Send & Return without boxing them.
Could that be the problem?
I don't know what else to try.
What would you suggest?

Thanks
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 03, 2012, 10:49:39 PM
Can you post a photo of your build? Maybe we'll see something. Have you built some pedals before, or is this your first?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JohnL on July 04, 2012, 05:48:16 PM
Well I need a favor from someone. Could someone post settings for a quack sound out of this box? I get some interesting sounds but 'll be damned if I can get a wah or quack out of it. So before I post pictures or waste anyone's time I would like to use a known setting to see if my problems are just operator error. As a side note I do not get the LED to light at all. I know to further trouble shoot I need pictures but I would like to just see what is going on.
Thanks,

John
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: albru80 on July 05, 2012, 04:54:33 AM
Hi Taylor,

These are the pictures.
It's not my first pedal.
I've built more or less 50.
I've the same problems of JohnL from the previous post: no obvious wah sound, no Sens pot and Bandwidth switch working.
Please, let me know if you seen anything wrong.
Thanks

(http://desmond.imageshack.us/Himg820/scaled.php?server=820&filename=04072012138.jpg&res=landing)
(http://desmond.imageshack.us/Himg585/scaled.php?server=585&filename=04072012137.jpg&res=landing)
(http://desmond.imageshack.us/Himg39/scaled.php?server=39&filename=04072012136.jpg&res=landing)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on July 05, 2012, 06:21:00 AM
Well I need a favor from someone. Could someone post settings for a quack sound out of this box? I get some interesting sounds but 'll be damned if I can get a wah or quack out of it. So before I post pictures or waste anyone's time I would like to use a known setting to see if my problems are just operator error. As a side note I do not get the LED to light at all. I know to further trouble shoot I need pictures but I would like to just see what is going on.
Thanks,

John

crank the blend and sensitivity
attack at lowest
decay about 30% (or whatever really)
color at whatever (start with something like 75%)

BP or LP
trigger at full
bandwith full or whatever it is called
range whatevs (this sets the bottom of the frequency sweep, probably for not completely filter out your notes)

pick hard if your guitar's signal is weak (singles etc)

now you have a simple LP/BP quack
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: albru80 on July 07, 2012, 12:37:28 PM
About the MOOG SWITCH,
I've read you should substitute the first 10K resistor(top one on the left of LT074 in the picture) but in this picture it looks like the second has been substituted.
Which one is the correct one?

Thanks
(http://i102.photobucket.com/albums/m112/monkeyxx/meatsphere2.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on July 07, 2012, 07:18:58 PM
btw i think i will experiment with the resistor value of the moog-mod, the 100k seems to rob too much resonance for my taste
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: albru80 on July 10, 2012, 05:14:06 AM
I've finally managed to make it work!
It had nothing to do with the board, the parts or the soldering.
I've received a fourth bunch of TL1458 and it finally works!
I think there are a lot of crappy versions of that IC that would work with simpler circuits but not this one.
I've notice some people had my same problem.
They could try to change that IC (not from the same bunch) and see if it makes any difference.
It actually was an MC1458 that made work at the end.
I hope it can be helpfull.
Thanks for your help!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: drezdn on July 27, 2012, 09:13:25 PM
About the MOOG SWITCH,
I've read you should substitute the first 10K resistor(top one on the left of LT074 in the picture) but in this picture it looks like the second has been substituted.
Which one is the correct one?

Thanks
(http://i102.photobucket.com/albums/m112/monkeyxx/meatsphere2.jpg)

I'm wondering about this too. It looks like the 10k resistor that's been pulled out is the one connected to pin 1.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on July 27, 2012, 11:00:28 PM
I just bought a real meatball and at the same knob settings thy aren't the same sound
No offence but the real lovetone kiks it's ass. It could be bugs in my build, not sure.

I might knock up another pcb sometime...

In particular the sensitivity is way off on the sphere, and the clone is generally thinner sounding,,,
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: drezdn on July 30, 2012, 08:06:24 PM
I did the "Moog Mod" by taking out the top 10k resistor. With the meter I checked continuity and found one of the now clear pads connected to pin 2 and the other connected to pin 8 and everything worked itself out from there. It's a cool mod with the switch working in tandem with the up/down switch (one setting sounds bad in the down setting, but great in the up and vice versa).
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: drezdn on July 30, 2012, 08:08:55 PM
How many throws should the Range switch be set at?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on July 30, 2012, 08:30:49 PM
four
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: drezdn on July 30, 2012, 09:22:17 PM
Thanks!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: claytushaywood on August 12, 2012, 12:24:49 PM
Does anyone have a layout of how to add the expression pedal jacks?
also wondering if its worth it to throw down on the VTL5C3's or will the NSL32's function equivallently?  I already have one vtl5c3 so if it sounds better using those or they are more accurate I'd be interested- sorry i dont know much about vactrols

I tried looking through the posts but I dont have time right now... so if anyone could help me that would be lovely!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MarcMooga on August 14, 2012, 07:01:41 AM
Hey everybody!!!

Knock knock on wood....  :icon_redface:

(http://http:\\x2sys.homeip.net\builds\meatsphere.jpg)

Working and sounding quite fine, but still have some problems with bandwidth and especially with direction
UP and DOWN. Only DOWN seems to work. If I switch to UP the LED is getting much darker .... almost switched off.
No filter at all with switch at UP position.

Can you again confirm the amount of positions for the for the switches please:
DIRECTION (UP / DOWN)-> 2
BANDWIDTH (HALF, FULL, OFF)-> 3
FILTERTYPE (LP,HP,BP) -> 3
RANGE (LOW HIGH)-> 2

Thank you Taylor!!!  :)


regards,
Marc
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MarcMooga on August 14, 2012, 07:04:23 AM
(http://x2sys.homeip.net/builds/meatsphere.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on August 14, 2012, 09:34:11 AM
Hey Marc, your Waahba Wooh looks reaaly good! What kind of enclosure is it? I never seen one like that before.

But the Range switch must be set for 4 positions, not only 2.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MarcMooga on August 14, 2012, 12:11:55 PM
Thank you Vince!  :)

Enclosure is completly DIY.
Plywood Body.
Fibreglass Panels.
Adhesive Aluminium Foil for Shielding.

I have spent (much too) much time only for enclosures, about 25 ones now. 
I have build them in 4 sizes (this is the largest one and this size was once created by me to fit the Krautrock Phaser of Jürgen Haible).
I have build them so that all connections are on the back.
That saves me a lot of space on the pedalboard.



Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on August 14, 2012, 01:07:03 PM
mine sounds much better with 5mm green diffuse LEDs and 10k/1M photocells...

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chordball on August 19, 2012, 11:58:55 AM
mine sounds much better with 5mm green diffuse LEDs and 10k/1M photocells...



Is this in replacement of the VTLC5C3's?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on August 20, 2012, 11:44:37 AM
mine sounds much better with 5mm green diffuse LEDs and 10k/1M photocells...



Is this in replacement of the VTLC5C3's?

I didnt have VTL, I used silonex NSL32 and it was poor
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: tlaubs on August 22, 2012, 02:52:11 PM
Does anyone know if it would be possible to still use the pedals in the loop if the Meat Shere is byupassed?  If not, does any one have an idea for a mod to do that?

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MarcoMike on August 22, 2012, 05:53:55 PM
take a look HERE (http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=81384.msg674046#msg674046)

it's just matter of adding SW4-B wiring. as I see from the pictures around, you're using a 3P4T, so it should be doable.

(but I'm not able to tell wether this will work on Taylor's board... maybe there is some traces cutting or the like to be done)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: WhenBoredomPeaks on September 11, 2012, 11:41:36 AM
My Meatball went fuzzy after some mods. It fuzzes around the cutoff frequency.
I swapped that 10k feedback resistor in the filter with a 8.2k because i have ran out 10k resistors. Could that be the cause of the fuzziness/distortion (at any resonance setting) of my filter or i made a mistake somewhere else?

(http://i.imgur.com/skqyQ.jpg)

Btw it sounds like a dirty overdriven filter now, bad for guitar stuff, potentially good for synth stuff.

edit: and for a few minutes i powered it with a 15v supply, i doubt that it could cause problems but maybe i fried the vactrols or something? but then it wouldn't filter.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on September 12, 2012, 06:36:49 AM
Taylor

Not to be a tattle-tale, but did you give permission for this?

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Lovetone-Meatball-Clone-/330792592055?pt=UK_Guitar_Accessories&hash=item4d04c662b7

I thought all your stuff was for personal use only, not knocking out repeated clones onto eBay etc?

As an aside, the guy also does big cheeses and he took my layout without asking permission.

Ian
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: SlugBait on September 12, 2012, 08:45:28 AM
Hi guys,

I received the MeatSphere and Gristleizer PCB some days ago. Very nice pieces ! Thanks Taylor !

I bought many components at my local store but they missed all the pots, switches and knobs...

The gristleizer is going to be piece of cake to mount. So let's talk about the MeatSphere...

I'm quite beginner in the area of pedal building so don't be surprised by my interrogations...

First, how to make sure the knobs i'm going to buy is completely compatible with the pots ? Is there an information that i should take a look at ? My local store had long shafts pots and switches..i would like to avoid buying this online...

About the 3P4T, i see a lot of different models and i 'm not quite sure about them. I want to make sure they are the right one, could someone point me the good one to buy in this list :

http://www.banzaimusic.com/Rotary-Switches/ (http://www.banzaimusic.com/Rotary-Switches/)

Is it this one ? http://fr.mouser.com/ProductDetail/CK-Components/A30415RSZQE/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMvNbjZ2WlReYpR40FFCXM07o2fCn%252b6EhBA%3d (http://fr.mouser.com/ProductDetail/CK-Components/A30415RSZQE/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMvNbjZ2WlReYpR40FFCXM07o2fCn%252b6EhBA%3d)


I think i'm going to buy on Banzai cuz they have everything i miss for the 3 boxes i'm currently building (WSG, GRISTLEIZER and MEATSPHERE)...

I may have additional questions in the future.

Thanks for your time, you did great build and i hope to succeed too !

Cheers
Sebastien
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on September 12, 2012, 02:57:22 PM
The important parameters of the pot shafts are just whether it's for set screw knobs or push-on knobs, and the shaft diameter. As far as the length, for pedals we usually use something like 15mm.

You want this switch:

http://www.banzaimusic.com/Rotary-Switch-3x4-Pins.html

But you will have to cut the shaft down most likely (not too hard as it's plastic) if you order from there. Mouser has the shorter pots buts if you're ordering from outside the US the shipping is expensive I hear.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on November 11, 2012, 04:58:23 PM
finally got time to finish one.   :D

Question though. the trigger leds and the external led..do not go completely dark. theres always a little light.

The 2 internal leds used are green leds pulled from a rotosphere. The rotosphere has a cooked pcb by the power supply. The leds checked out okay.

I amusing 100ohm for those.

I have for the external led a 5mm orange led from pedal parts plus I think. I don't know the cmd. That resistor is currently a 1K5. should I increase that?

Both 1.8Meg resistors are 1.5Meg right now.

Everything else is cool. But I will audio probe after a quick gig tonight.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DrKoester on January 13, 2013, 06:06:08 PM
Whoa.

After taking the last 6 months off of working on this (moved twice and got married) I completed the wiring and enclosure this weekend and -- whoa.

This thing is a beast.  The range of possibilities is fantastic.  I'll ditto previous build reports by confirming that it takes patience to find the right settings.  I started with the following:

Mid-Hi Range
Low Pass
Down
Full Bandwidth
Max Sensitivity
Min Attack
12 o'clock Decay
Max Colour, Intensity, Blend

From there it was a matter of exploration.  I haven't tried the FX loop and my LED isn't working.  Looking at some of the other builder's gut shots it looks like I had some confusion with the build instructions and will try to fix on my own first before posting questions.

Thanks to Taylor for such an awesome board and Vince_b for the template (although I still managed to drill outside the lines).  Will post pictures once its painted.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on January 15, 2013, 12:31:42 AM
Hello all, I've made a dazzling series of mistakes when trying to test my meat sphere build. When engaged the thing just hums. When in bypass I hear un-distorted guitar. My worst mistake was when trying to make sure it was getting power I grabbed another wall wart and that one was 9V AC. There was no smoke or noise or anything. Now the meat sphere only hums. The  led only lights when the rotary switch is set to up with the intensity all the way up. Where do I start trouble shooting? I've looked at my soldering to see if I shorted something. That all looks fine.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on January 15, 2013, 05:17:49 PM
Ok. So. I am going through 9v wall warts at a clip. They are burning out. Smelling that plastic smell. But there is no smoke or smell in the meat sphere. I have a short somewhere after a) reversing the polarity of 9V and ground at the power connector and b) using a 9V AC adapter by mistake after killing the first 9vdc wallwart. The Led doesn't light either. Where do I start troubleshooting?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on January 15, 2013, 11:23:40 PM
OK, OK. So I checked the diodes thinking the ac from the 9v ac adapter I grabbed by mistake did them in. Sure enough! I've replaced them but this thing still drains a 9v battery in minutes so I still have a short I guess. Plus the LED still won't light. I do get the effect until the battery dies so there is some improvement. And I do get clean guitar when in bypass. Any suggestions on troubleshooting?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bluebunny on January 16, 2013, 11:49:50 AM
If you're destroying wall warts and draining PP3 in minutes, I'm guessing you have a dead short across the power rails.  Do your short-lived batteries get warm?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: slacker on January 16, 2013, 01:00:36 PM
If you had to replace the 1N4001 diode, then you should also replace the two 47uF caps the AC will have damaged those possibly causing the short, the opamps are most likely also dead or damaged.

Have you got a multimeter?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on January 16, 2013, 03:50:16 PM
Thank-you so much for the advice!!! Well, I checked everything with a VOM. And, yes I found the short. It was right at the ground pad. I also found a wrong cap. The box is working now enough for me to explore it while I wait for the correct cap. But, one last question. The LED still doesn't light. I'd rather have it on than off. What value resistor in RLED would get it to light? Or, how could I change the wiring in Taylor's off board switch diagram to get an Led that's on when the meat sphere is engaged?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DrKoester on January 17, 2013, 10:16:41 PM
Alright so a few posts back (and last night) everything was great but at some point between taking it out of the enclosure and working on the LED and putting it back something went south.  After re-assembling all was well except the colour pot only worked in the last 90% or so of it's rotation -- in other words, no real effect from the pedal until I hit a certain point in the pot and the effect popped in. 

Today I fired it up again and I have no effect.  It engages but no envelope is triggered and the result is similar to my bypassed signal but slightly muted.  I checked the resistance of the pots throughout their sweep and all are normal but the colour -- it is 0-65k ohm and then drops down to about 55k over the last bit of motion clockwise.  I think I'll do the obvious but I'm confused on how it was mostly functional last night and now it has no effect.

Any thoughts?  I will try to track down a replacement here for it and report back.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on January 18, 2013, 09:04:23 PM
I have a question about the grounding of this. On the drawing Taylor has in the pdf all the audio connectors are grounded to the same point. Is that the same ground as the ground pad on the board? Should I connect all the grounds to the neg side of the power? Thanks.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on January 19, 2013, 10:13:47 AM
Yes, connect all the grounds including the board ground together. Most people do it at the input jack because it's got a bigger tab onto which to solder than the power jack.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on January 19, 2013, 12:02:20 PM
Taylor thanks. Learning lots from this one. The Gristleizer worked like a snap, so I didn't need to learn about troubleshooting and tracing until now!  OK. So, I have now determined that the vactrols aren't lighting. When I measure the change of resistance across the vactrol resistor posts I see none until I briefly touch the positive side of the vactrol LED post with +9VDC. Then the resistance changes and the visual LED lights as well. Any suggestions what I should look at? Thank-you. Joe.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DrKoester on January 19, 2013, 04:53:13 PM
I replaced the colour pot with a different B100k.  The one that came off tests fine when it is disconnected.  This replacement is doing the same thing...essentially it goes 0-60k through the first 80% or so of its motion and over the last 20% it comes back down to 55k. 

Is there something going on elsewhere in the circuit that could cause this?

Thanks, Tom
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on January 20, 2013, 10:46:57 AM
Taylor thanks. Learning lots from this one. The Gristleizer worked like a snap, so I didn't need to learn about troubleshooting and tracing until now!  OK. So, I have now determined that the vactrols aren't lighting. When I measure the change of resistance across the vactrol resistor posts I see none until I briefly touch the positive side of the vactrol LED post with +9VDC. Then the resistance changes and the visual LED lights as well. Any suggestions what I should look at? Thank-you. Joe.

Seems your envelope follower is not working. Check the dual opamp and its surrounding circuitry for shorts. Also, the opamp here is critical. You need the part listed in the PDF (don't remember it offhand) and some people have experienced some units of that opamp not working as well as others. Try swapping it out for another.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on January 20, 2013, 10:50:50 AM
I replaced the colour pot with a different B100k.  The one that came off tests fine when it is disconnected.  This replacement is doing the same thing...essentially it goes 0-60k through the first 80% or so of its motion and over the last 20% it comes back down to 55k. 

Is there something going on elsewhere in the circuit that could cause this?

Thanks, Tom

Often resistances read strangely while in circuit because f series and parallel resistances from other components. I wouldn't worry so much about that. It sounds to me like you have the same problem as lulu joe regarding the envelope follower, but in your case I suspect something is shorting out in your enclosure. Try taking it back out and seeing if it works. If so you know it's shorting and you can figure out a way to better isolate the board from the box.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DrKoester on January 20, 2013, 02:33:13 PM
Thanks Taylor!  Looks like you were right about the short....the thing works fine out of the enclosure.  Back to the funk!  Bittersweet however as this is supposed to be a b-day gift for my bass-playing older brother.  I have a feeling as soon as I hand it off to him I will be back to building my own.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on January 20, 2013, 11:32:41 PM
Well. I did an audio trace. The audio signal seemed very weak on the side of the 220k resistor that is farthest away from pin 1 of the dual op amp. So, I changed the resistor. The signal also seemed weak on the decay pot. So, I reflowed the solder joints. In fact I reflowed most of the solder joints on the board just to be sure. I changed all the electrolitic caps in case they were damaged when I connected power backwards early on.
 I replaced both theTL074 and LM1458 with new ones.
 So, now I think it's working. I can get a triggered wah effect and so forth.
 I read the resistance at the vactrol legs and it changed from 220k down to very small when I strummed a note. And, didn't change when I turned the trigger to off.
 ========>I STILL can't get the visual LED to flash? RLED is 4k7. Somewhere in the thread I thought I read that value is what it should be. Would changing that value make it light? If I can get this damn LED to light, I'll consider it done.
 As always thanks for reading this.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on January 20, 2013, 11:55:54 PM
One last thing about the vactrol LED and visual LED. I only read about 1.6 volts on the positive leg. Thanks again.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on January 21, 2013, 10:38:37 PM
Hooray. Debugged and working! I call mine the Funky Meat! Thanks for the help.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DrKoester on February 17, 2013, 03:09:38 PM
Greeting again.  I can't get the FX loop working.  I've looked over the wiring diagram and I believe I have it wired correctly.  Here's how I have it:

(http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h183/tick33183/image.jpeg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on February 17, 2013, 03:43:12 PM
Do you have a VOM? Check the diagram one MORE time and the use the VOM to check continuity. Does it you could be getting a short on the enclosure.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DrKoester on March 02, 2013, 01:06:08 PM
lulu..sure enough checking over the diagram resolved it.  I had the tip of the send connected to the tip of the return.  Fixed it and I have a fully functioning meatsphere!

Thanks all!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Nicofromfrance on March 14, 2013, 05:00:32 PM
Can someone please tell me what are the exact dimensions of the Meat Sphere pcb? I'd like to know if it will fit in an enclosure that I already have. Thanks a lot! ;)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on March 15, 2013, 10:36:20 AM
It measures 4-15/16 x 2-6/16.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Nicofromfrance on March 16, 2013, 04:31:40 AM
Thanks, I appreciate that!  ;)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Rmanen on April 04, 2013, 05:51:36 AM
Has anyone got sound samples of this pedal on bass guitar?  :icon_cool:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on April 04, 2013, 10:33:05 AM
I don't have sound samples, but if the question really is, "Does it sound good with bass?", then the answer is, yes. I use mine with a fuzz in the effects loop and it sounds awesome. Hugh Hopper, Soft Machine like. I also use it with the bass alone to get a funky clave sound.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: kwijibo on April 10, 2013, 07:43:45 PM
I'm not getting a triggered effect. I get clean output when turning the blend all the way to the clean side, so the first TL074 appears to work. The LED will light depending on the positions of the attack, decay and intensity knobs but doesn't seem to change at all with the input signal. The sensitivity knob doesn't seem to have any affect. Pulling the LM1458 stops the LED from lighting under any conditions. I've traced through the circuit from the input and continuity seems to be correct, just that the envelope detector doesn't seem to work.

Any ideas? Are there any common opamps I could try and substitute with? My LM1458s have the National logo and came from Tayda.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: kwijibo on April 10, 2013, 08:16:36 PM
I went through a couple of sheets of conductive foam covered in ICs and found an LM358 and now it appears to work. The LED follows the input and I get a huge filter sweep  :icon_wink:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on April 11, 2013, 08:27:39 PM
Strange. I haven't heard anyone having quite so much trouble finding an IC that works. Has anyone else had a similar experience?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Strategy on April 12, 2013, 01:01:40 AM
hey taylor and all. After a year or so of barely poking at my diy setup I have a meat sphere up and running :)

Random question, is there a trick to getting the rotary switch setting washers to stay put? I use the little setting washers to choose my number of turns for each switch but when I box it up they wiggle loose and I end up with too many positions. I'm ready to try loc-tite or something! is that, or glue, a BAD idea for any reason?? maybe just a little dab of tape so they don't slip around?

I haven't implemented my expression or CV yet. Gonna do it the vanilla way, a switching jack for the expression jack so that the pedal just replaces the pot, and for CV I'm just going to use another vactrol to the intensity pot middle lug or something. yet to be tested...

thanks taylor and all for an amazing project!
Strategy
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: kwijibo on April 12, 2013, 07:58:26 AM
Strange. I haven't heard anyone having quite so much trouble finding an IC that works. Has anyone else had a similar experience?

After playing around I noticed the filter only sweeps in Up mode, and I need a fairly high-amplitude signal to get a trigger even with sensitivity all the way up, so I may have another problem. I've ordered some 1458 ICs from RS to try and rule out anything IC related.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Strategy on April 13, 2013, 03:09:29 AM
tonight I alligator clipped a "cv input" to the intensity pot, using an external cv hooked up to a vactrol. odd thing, with adding opto's to a circuit that already uses opto's, it works, BUT, the sound/behavior is super "slewed." the natural musical slide of vactrol based CV is multiplied the way I have this configured. it's musical, but the external cv is almost too subtle at some settings.

I'm using VTL5C3 in both the pcb and in my external cv circuit. Should I use a "faster" opto?- something like VT5C4 or higher?? will it make any difference?

also: is a "sidechain" mod possible in this circuit? it would be cool if the envelope could be triggered by a 2nd audio input.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nocentelli on April 13, 2013, 06:21:23 AM
You can already have a different audio trigger source without modification: Just plug the trigger source into the input, plug nothing into the send, but instead plug your guitar (or whatever instrument you want to be filtered) into the return jack.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Strategy on April 13, 2013, 11:05:54 AM
wow thanks!!!

right now send/return is bypassed with the jumper, but should be easy to add it back.
thanks!

EDIT: is it possible to wire only the return and not add a jack for send? Or would this cause incorrect functioning for the circuit?

strategy

You can already have a different audio trigger source without modification: Just plug the trigger source into the input, plug nothing into the send, but instead plug your guitar (or whatever instrument you want to be filtered) into the return jack.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Strategy on April 17, 2013, 04:37:32 PM
My build is almost done, figured out the issues with the rotary switch setting nuts not staying in place. Also in the end decided still to omit send/return and expression, but keep external CV.

My LED is blinking on and off at a constant interval, even when I'm not playing (when the envelope CV is at rest). Any idea what's the cause???  ??? ???

Strategy
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lulu_joe13 on April 17, 2013, 04:59:00 PM
Maybe a short into that circuit? You are missing out leaving off the send return. I use mine with a fuzz and it is awesome.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Strategy on April 17, 2013, 06:12:17 PM
I tried the send/return for a while, both for patching in an effect like fuzz and as a possible source of side-chain modulation. I think I just don't have a big need for this really. I still have the holes in the enclosure in case I decide to add them :)

I'll look for a short in my LED circuit...

Strategy
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Strategy on April 17, 2013, 06:31:02 PM
I added the CV input as a vactrol to lug 1 of the cutoff pot. this is in parallel with the envelope circuit. The LED is connected to the envelope circuit as well. I can't see any wires touching that would cause a short, maybe the blinking LED is introduced by this additional external wiring somehow?

Strategy
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mthibeau on April 27, 2013, 05:13:47 PM
I'm not getting a triggered effect. I get clean output when turning the blend all the way to the clean side, so the first TL074 appears to work. The LED will light depending on the positions of the attack, decay and intensity knobs but doesn't seem to change at all with the input signal. The sensitivity knob doesn't seem to have any affect. Pulling the LM1458 stops the LED from lighting under any conditions. I've traced through the circuit from the input and continuity seems to be correct, just that the envelope detector doesn't seem to work.

Any ideas? Are there any common opamps I could try and substitute with? My LM1458s have the National logo and came from Tayda.

Strange. I haven't heard anyone having quite so much trouble finding an IC that works. Has anyone else had a similar experience?

I am facing the exact same problem as kwijibo, I just can't get the envelope detector to work, sensitivity knob does nothing, my three LM1458 ICs were from Tayda as well.

Any suggestions, should I just buy some of the same ICs from a different vendor?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mthibeau on April 27, 2013, 06:03:34 PM
It's definately the LM1458 ICs I got from Tayda, I stuck in an NE5532 and the envelope detector works, it's seems to be functional, but not as dynamic as I would expect.

I ordered an MC1458 and should get it in a week, see if that one works better.

Maybe Tayda's supplier is selling them some low quality ICs. I ordered 3 of them from Tayda around December 2012.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: kwijibo on April 27, 2013, 06:54:01 PM
It's definately the LM1458 ICs I got from Tayda, I stuck in an NE5532 and the envelope detector works, it's seems to be functional, but not as dynamic as I would expect.

I ordered an MC1458 and should get it in a week, see if that one works better.

Maybe Tayda's supplier is selling them some low quality ICs. I ordered 3 of them from Tayda around December 2012.

If it helps, I ordered TI MC148s from RS and they worked the same as the Tayda ones.  ??? I'm also using clone switches so I've desoldered them and ordered some Alphas just in case the switching logic is different.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mthibeau on April 29, 2013, 02:18:42 AM
It's definately the LM1458 ICs I got from Tayda, I stuck in an NE5532 and the envelope detector works, it's seems to be functional, but not as dynamic as I would expect.

I ordered an MC1458 and should get it in a week, see if that one works better.

Maybe Tayda's supplier is selling them some low quality ICs. I ordered 3 of them from Tayda around December 2012.

If it helps, I ordered TI MC148s from RS and they worked the same as the Tayda ones.  ??? I'm also using clone switches so I've desoldered them and ordered some Alphas just in case the switching logic is different.

Bummer, you get no envelope detection at all?

I used the plastic Alpha pots, my build is working in both up and down, and I don't need to give it that hot a signal for it to light up with the NE5532 in there, the envelope detection seems just off. I'll post my results when I get my TI MC1458.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mthibeau on May 03, 2013, 03:43:45 AM
The TI MC1458 worked perfectly, the ones from Tayda must be faulty (I tried all three of them). Builders beware, they didn't work for me. I got an NOS TI chip from from ebay and it worked like a charm.

Not sure if this is normal, but I really have to hit the strings pretty hard, even with the loudest humbuckers I own, to get the envelope to open, I have been playing it with a SHO in front of it now and it sounds great!

Is there a way to mod it so it can be a little more sensitive to input? I'll re-read the entire thread and see if it was mentioned.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 1878 on June 01, 2013, 06:05:16 AM
I built mine yesterday but it doesn't sweep. Luckily, I'd socketed the optos because I seem to have problems with them whenever I use commercially bought versions ?!?! I replaced them with an LED/LDR combo & noticed the LED's weren't reacting in a 'sweepy' way. They get brighter/dimmer when I turn one of the controls (sensitivity I think) but that's it.

I can hear differences in tone when I play with some of the switches & controls so it seems not to be triggering. I've tried lots of different settings but nothing. Any ideas where to start ??

Thanks in advance.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on June 01, 2013, 08:35:25 AM
Which dual opamp are you using?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 1878 on June 01, 2013, 08:37:22 AM
I'm using a LM1458N. I bought 3. The second worked for a short time.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 1878 on June 04, 2013, 03:06:49 PM
I've fitted an MC1458 & rolled my own vactrols. It's working now !! I'm gonna box it back up & spend a bit of time getting to know it.

Just to clarify...

Range - 4 positions
Up/Down - 2 positions
Range - 4 positions
HP/BP/LP - 3 positions

Thanks.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on June 05, 2013, 12:54:09 PM
Range has 3 positions IIRC. Maybe somebody who's built it more recently will correct me if I'm wrong. Glad you got it working!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 1878 on June 15, 2013, 11:08:17 AM
Could I use a normal stereo jack in place of the switching jack for the effects loop ??

Thanks.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: jmasciswannabe on June 15, 2013, 12:20:49 PM
You could do that  and wire it so that as long as you had a pedal o patch it would work. Otherwise, your signal would stop at fx send.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 1878 on June 30, 2013, 10:58:11 AM
Finished it a couple of days ago.

I never thought I'd have use for an envelope filter... Love it !!


(http://imageshack.us/a/img534/8097/04xb.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nocentelli on June 30, 2013, 01:07:29 PM
Love the graphic: Where did you get the rotary switch knobs?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 1878 on June 30, 2013, 05:03:31 PM
I think they were on Ebay. I buy or acquire a lot of stuff for 'future use' if it catches my eye though, so they could be from anywhere in all honesty.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 03, 2013, 04:50:47 AM
Whoa, great build! I think Allied Electronics sells similar knobs.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Jopn on July 16, 2013, 09:37:54 AM
So many sexy builds!  Hopefully the PCBs come back in stock in August as expected.  I'm itching to get this beast of a project going!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 4floorsofwhores on July 17, 2013, 12:04:56 PM
Re those great knobs. I just found some at poodle's pedal parts.co.uk. Lovely. Might finally box this one up :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Nicofromfrance on July 27, 2013, 01:36:28 PM
I'm going to order parts for this build, but as I see pot tapers (A,B,C pots etc) are not the same between USA and Europe, what are the correct tapers to order for the Meatball? I mean I can't tell if the tapers in the build pdf are USA or Europe standards.

In USA:
    A - Audio or Log taper
    B - Linear taper

In Europe:
    A - Linear taper
    B - Audio or Log taper

(from the build pdf:)
Potentiometers
2 - B10K
1 - B1K
1 - B100K
1 - A100K
1 - B5K

Thanks!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nocentelli on July 27, 2013, 01:57:32 PM
The decay pot is 100k audio, the rest are linear as far as I know. These tapers work well in my build.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Nicofromfrance on July 27, 2013, 02:12:50 PM
Thanks for the quick answer! ;)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JaviCAP on August 17, 2013, 09:30:19 AM
Hello,

It's August 17th... whn these new pcbs will be available?

Thanks in advance.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: GoranP on August 17, 2013, 09:48:31 AM
yeah i'll be taking one as well when they come back in stock.
Title: Meat Sphere - switchable FX loop
Post by: nocentelli on August 18, 2013, 10:38:10 AM
Can anyone suggest a simple-ish way to add a switch to position the FX loop either a) "normal", i.e. post-input, pre-filter or b) pre-input?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 4floorsofwhores on September 19, 2013, 06:25:21 PM
Finally finished my build. worked fine until i broke a rotary switch boxing it up. I've tried everything to get the switch out without damaging the board. ANy thoughts anyone? gutted
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Vince_b on September 19, 2013, 07:21:53 PM
Try a solder sucker. I hope it doesn't sound rude lol
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on September 19, 2013, 08:33:24 PM
I have used a desoldering iron from Radio Shack for this type of thing. It's just one of their cheap irons attached to a solder sucker, but it's easier to use than separate tools.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: soggybag on September 21, 2013, 01:56:10 AM
Finished it a couple of days ago.

I never thought I'd have use for an envelope filter... Love it !!


(http://imageshack.us/a/img534/8097/04xb.jpg)

Great build 1878, love the graphic design.

I built one of these some time ago and was just revisiting my build. I was never really happy with the performance. It's really finicky, some settings don't do much, and I really need to dial in a rudimentary envelope filter sound. Rereading this thread, and ran across these posts by LaceSensor:

http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=92894.msg860876#msg860876
and
http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=92894.msg863314#msg863314

I used VTL5C3s for the photo couplers. I think I'm going to take them out, add some sockets and try some different types here. LaceSensor mentions green LEDs, seem to remember seeing these in pictures of the original Meatball. Will post results...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: soggybag on September 21, 2013, 04:46:58 PM
A quick test of some random LED and LDRs, and there's a noticeable difference in the envelope. I'll have to experiment more. I think there was more range of difference here than experimenting with the op-amp.

I used some random yellow LEDs and some LDRs from futurel, PHOTOCELL2. http://www.futurlec.com/Photocells.shtml These seem to have the 10K to 1M range suggested by LaceSensor.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on September 26, 2013, 06:11:21 PM
The original Lovetone pedals use 5mm diffuse green LEDs
Thats what I have used in the two of these that I have built.
I took a best guess at the LDR and 1M/10K works brilliantly. I have a real 96 model to compare to ;)

However, an oddity: In my last build, 4 x 1458 chips wouldnt envelope at all.
So I tried some other op amps. Only ones that worked were ne5532s....
So ...go figure?!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mthibeau on September 27, 2013, 02:49:49 AM
I had trouble with all 4 LM1458 chips I got from Tayda. I ordered a MC1458 and it worked (I also tried an NE5532 and it finally enveloped, but wasn't very smooth, I used the suggested vactrols in mine instead of hand rolled ones)

... I think this is the 4th report of trouble with that op amp in this thread.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on September 27, 2013, 05:51:50 AM
Roger that mine were tayda

The 5532 with my own vactrols sound wonderful.
Smoother than I recall my previous build
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on September 27, 2013, 01:23:35 PM
On the cusp of pulling the trigger to build this  ::) A few questions first....

Has anyone verified a COMPLETE list of subbable dual op amps for the LM1458 that will work? I have some KA4558s here that "apparently" are close to the 1458 but, I have not seen them used. Is there a list of usuable subs?

Also, has anyone rolled their own vactrols for this? If so, what LDRs specs and color/brightness LED specs did you use?

Thanks for the assist  ;D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on September 28, 2013, 08:00:01 PM
Out of stock until August??

Taylor??  ::)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: soggybag on September 29, 2013, 01:41:50 AM
The original Lovetone pedals use 5mm diffuse green LEDs
Thats what I have used in the two of these that I have built.
I took a best guess at the LDR and 1M/10K works brilliantly. I have a real 96 model to compare to ;)

However, an oddity: In my last build, 4 x 1458 chips wouldnt envelope at all.
So I tried some other op amps. Only ones that worked were ne5532s....
So ...go figure?!

I think you're right about the LDR/LED. This is probably the part to adjust. The op-amps are less important. I notice in pictures of the original the LDR and LED were in sockets. Figure Lovetone used sockets for a reason. I don't think they would solder extra parts without a reason.

Mine worked but sounded pretty lifeless with the VTL5C3. The envelope was there but just didn't sound very good. It also was hard to dial in for some settings. I'm sure Lovetone would not have sold very may if the originals sounded like mine.

I changed to the Futurlec LDR, PHOTOCELL2 10K - 1M, and a random LED, and it sort of woke up. I just did a short test. I added sockets for the LDR/LED pair for more testing. I need to put it back in the box for real testing since the new parts are not light tight. I'll post again after a few more tests.

I built up a second board today. I used sockets for this one also.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on September 29, 2013, 04:55:05 AM
The original Lovetone pedals use 5mm diffuse green LEDs
Thats what I have used in the two of these that I have built.
I took a best guess at the LDR and 1M/10K works brilliantly. I have a real 96 model to compare to ;)

However, an oddity: In my last build, 4 x 1458 chips wouldnt envelope at all.
So I tried some other op amps. Only ones that worked were ne5532s....
So ...go figure?!

I think you're right about the LDR/LED. This is probably the part to adjust. The op-amps are less important. I notice in pictures of the original the LDR and LED were in sockets. Figure Lovetone used sockets for a reason. I don't think they would solder extra parts without a reason.

Mine worked but sounded pretty lifeless with the VTL5C3. The envelope was there but just didn't sound very good. It also was hard to dial in for some settings. I'm sure Lovetone would not have sold very may if the originals sounded like mine.

I changed to the Futurlec LDR, PHOTOCELL2 10K - 1M, and a random LED, and it sort of woke up. I just did a short test. I added sockets for the LDR/LED pair for more testing. I need to put it back in the box for real testing since the new parts are not light tight. I'll post again after a few more tests.

I built up a second board today. I used sockets for this one also.

Lovetone have never used sockets to my knowledge
What they do use is little plastic riser/spacer to get the led and ldr aligned.
I would strongly just suggest 10k/1m with green diffuse 5mm led.
Credentials: I have the original meatball and I've cloned the dopp and I've tested lots of ldr led combos in my effects...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on September 29, 2013, 04:57:07 AM
On the cusp of pulling the trigger to build this  ::) A few questions first....

Has anyone verified a COMPLETE list of subbable dual op amps for the LM1458 that will work? I have some KA4558s here that "apparently" are close to the 1458 but, I have not seen them used. Is there a list of usuable subs?

Also, has anyone rolled their own vactrols for this? If so, what LDRs specs and color/brightness LED specs did you use?

Thanks for the assist  ;D

Just have the usual suspects on hand in case
Tayda 1458s don't envelope for me, so buy them elsewhere.
Mc1458 should work.
I also had good experience with ne5532

For the vactrol,avoid expensive silonex or vtl units and just get some 10k/1M ldr and pair with 5mm diffuse green led. You don't need to,shrink wrap them either, lovetone never have....in any of their pedals.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 4floorsofwhores on October 03, 2013, 07:22:49 PM
I have used a desoldering iron from Radio Shack for this type of thing. It's just one of their cheap irons attached to a solder sucker, but it's easier to use than separate tools.
thanks i'll give it a go
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on October 17, 2013, 03:41:49 PM
So.....

Does anyone know when these will become available?

Paging Mr. Taylor.... Mr. Taylor.... You are wanted in the Sales aisle...  :P
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on October 17, 2013, 06:32:25 PM
Unfortunately it's going to be a while. I just updated the site to reflect that I should definitely have them before the new year.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: dujuarez on October 17, 2013, 09:07:19 PM
I have a question about the 3P4T rotary switches. How do I solder to board so that A,B,C and 1-12 are in the correct position?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on October 18, 2013, 01:18:55 PM
They are radially symmetrical if you use the ones spec'ed in the docs, so as long as they fit into the board they're oriented correctly.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on October 21, 2013, 01:56:09 AM
MY status LED, which is a clear orange. Could be a 1000CD or 10000CD..Or is it CM ? I kinda forgot.... :icon_redface:

Ayways...right now my status led resistor is a 470 ohm. Should I change this to a higher value? And this would only affect the status LED anyways right? Not the LDR's by any chance?

I see some clones have as low as 330ohm to as high as 10K. My led has not burned out yet, but with a 470 ohm and such a high rated led, could it be drawing more current than needed and taking it from the pcb?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on October 21, 2013, 07:01:35 AM
RLED only limits the current to the the visible LED. It needs to be valued differently for different LEDs. If it's bright enough, you're fine. If it's too bright, increase the RLED value and if it's too dim, decrease it.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: GoranP on October 21, 2013, 09:09:18 AM

Taylor, how 'bout some meatsphere boards? Any in the works?
I've got some homeless rotaries that need taking care of...  ;D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Jopn on October 21, 2013, 09:42:33 AM

Taylor, how 'bout some meatsphere boards? Any in the works?
I've got some homeless rotaries that need taking care of...  ;D

Hey Goran, Taylor posted up an update about 4 replies earlier in this thread.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: GoranP on October 21, 2013, 09:54:14 AM

Oh crap...  ::) :icon_redface:

I really need to read more carefully... just got my rotaries for some other projects and put some aside for a MS.
Checked T's web (as I religiously do every other week) for some boards and just completely missed that bit of information.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on October 22, 2013, 12:37:05 AM
Okay thanks!

What if the status LED never goes off? In up sweep or Down sweep? 

I'm sure I have a minor issue with the build, but nothing a little time can't fix.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on October 22, 2013, 07:59:54 PM
Okay so I solved my Status LED issue. Just a quick resistor change.

I'm running it with a 1458 and 5C3 vactrols.

What I noticed is it's a little easy to get it to distort. Its not too much distortion, but its more than what I'd like out of it. Other than this..the thing is almost perfect. :D

So, with this in mind I have ..... over 60 NSL32's I can try, a couple more 5C3's I can try. A handful of photoresistors, but I need to make sure they are 10K / 1M and a few leds that are diffused.

As far as opamps...I have 5532's, 1458's 4558's, TL072, NJM 2068's..OPA2604's...The 074 is a ST, not a TI...but this should not be a problem..correct?

What should I start with if my filter is just a little overdriven and I want as clean as I can get?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on October 23, 2013, 05:06:50 AM
Socket and experiment,

I've written already a few times my experience.
Led and correct ldr is the best solution. Nsl32 sound like shit.
5c3 I didn't try.
Op amp try the 5532 then other 1458s
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on October 25, 2013, 06:09:45 PM
5532 works fine.

I'm keeping the VTL's in there for now.

But I am going to mess with the freq range caps. The pedal is cool. but just a little thin sounding.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on October 25, 2013, 06:37:19 PM
Try the green led and the right ldr.... Makes a difference!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on October 25, 2013, 10:01:01 PM
Even in the low end of the signal?

I'll give it a go...( gosh darn stubborn fella gotta keep tellin me to switch this and switch that....Harumph Harumph! )  :icon_mrgreen:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: FuzzAldrin on November 06, 2013, 08:58:43 PM
Ok ... so rotary postions

up/down is 2 positions
bandwidth is 3
range is 4
High,band and lowpass is 3 positions

Correct?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 07, 2013, 10:23:41 AM
Yes.  :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: FuzzAldrin on November 07, 2013, 03:16:44 PM
Thanks.
Well, I finished it up and I get only a clean signal when effect is on. Bypass works. The LED comes on and pulses depending on how I move some knobs. I don't appear to have any wet signal. Adjusting the knobs doesn't appear to do anything with the exception of the "blend" knob. When full CCW, its at about unity gain but the volume goes down as I turn it CW, and the volume dies off at about all the way dimed.
Used Tayda LM1458 chip too. Any thoughts?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 07, 2013, 04:33:24 PM
I would audio probe through the audio section of the circuit and see where the signal is shorting or not making contact.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on November 07, 2013, 05:07:17 PM
Thanks.
Well, I finished it up and I get only a clean signal when effect is on. Bypass works. The LED comes on and pulses depending on how I move some knobs. I don't appear to have any wet signal. Adjusting the knobs doesn't appear to do anything with the exception of the "blend" knob. When full CCW, its at about unity gain but the volume goes down as I turn it CW, and the volume dies off at about all the way dimed.
Used Tayda LM1458 chip too. Any thoughts?


ITs the tayda chip id bet money on it
try a 5532 or any other dual op amp and see if you get envelope...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mthibeau on November 08, 2013, 03:19:06 PM
ITs the tayda chip id bet money on it
try a 5532 or any other dual op amp and see if you get envelope...

I have to 2nd that, all 3 of the LM1458 I got from them did not envelope. A spare 5532 I had worked, then I bought a MC1458 (NOS) on Ebay and it worked fine.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: alanp on November 08, 2013, 05:34:02 PM
Got some LM1458 chips straight from Mouser (not tayda). Worked first pop.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: FuzzAldrin on November 08, 2013, 08:33:49 PM
Thanks guys, I will try another chip and report back.  :icon_cool:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MickeyP73 on January 13, 2014, 04:10:27 PM
Aargh, I think I made a terrible mistake. :'( I've soldered three rotary switches on the wrong side of the board.

Can I just continue and put the fourth on the same side as the three are now, or will the circuit not work? ??? Desoldering them will be difficult. Removing by any other means as well (any tips?  :))

Any help is appreciated. I guess I learned to never solder when you're tired. :-\
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on January 13, 2014, 04:13:59 PM
Better invest in a desolder pump bro!  :-\
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MickeyP73 on January 14, 2014, 01:09:20 AM
Thanks, yup, that was what I was afraid of. Desoldering a 15 pin switch is a pain, if at all practically possible. I'll try to cut the switches off some how and I can desolder the pins. Seems the best option, even though I will ruin the switches.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Psychopath on January 14, 2014, 03:11:05 AM
Aargh, I think I made a terrible mistake. :'( I've soldered three rotary switches on the wrong side of the board.

Can I just continue and put the fourth on the same side as the three are now, or will the circuit not work? ??? Desoldering them will be difficult. Removing by any other means as well (any tips?  :))

Any help is appreciated. I guess I learned to never solder when you're tired. :-\
Put this one in my "fail" box for the past couple months as it was not working. A bunch of questions but the most important is:

Will this work with the switches mounted "wrong" on the component side?

(http://img207.imageshack.us/img207/8783/img2566j.jpg) (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/207/img2566j.jpg/)

Uploaded with ImageShack.us (http://imageshack.us)
Yes, since that type of switch has contacts that are symmetrical, it will work the same with the switches on the wrong side, except of course that the positions will all be backwards.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MickeyP73 on January 14, 2014, 08:56:21 AM
 :icon_biggrin: Whooohoooo, backwards positions, I can live with that. Thank you so much for digging that up, I didn't catch that!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: njkmonty on February 06, 2014, 03:18:24 AM
can someone advise where exactly i place the locking tabs into the rotary switches?

i cant get my head around it!!!

(http://i999.photobucket.com/albums/af111/njkmonty/IMG_5529_zps19ea1342.jpg)
(http://i999.photobucket.com/albums/af111/njkmonty/IMG_5531_zps03b37279.jpg)
(http://i999.photobucket.com/albums/af111/njkmonty/IMG_5534_zps6ba30823.jpg)
(http://i999.photobucket.com/albums/af111/njkmonty/IMG_5532_zps46ea90e6.jpg)
(http://i999.photobucket.com/albums/af111/njkmonty/IMG_5533_zps478d752c.jpg)
(http://i999.photobucket.com/albums/af111/njkmonty/IMG_5535_zps154af646.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bcalla on February 06, 2014, 08:00:12 AM
You need to place the tab in each switch so that the number of positions is limited as follows:
Bandwidth - 3
Range - 4
Up/Down - 2
Filter - 3
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: njkmonty on February 06, 2014, 05:51:26 PM
i noticed that in comparison to Taylor's picture on the first page, I didnt insert the alpha switches in the exact orientation as he did, should that be a problem?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bcalla on February 06, 2014, 06:15:42 PM
i noticed that in comparison to Taylor's picture on the first page, I didnt insert the alpha switches in the exact orientation as he did, should that be a problem?
No, that won't matter.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: njkmonty on February 06, 2014, 06:43:59 PM
ok cool cheers will test it now
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: alanp on February 06, 2014, 11:28:56 PM
Adding the Intensity expression jack is worth doing -- it should be possible on the Meatsphere by running wires from pins 1 and 3 of the Intensity pot (wire it to the board as normal) to an insulated jack, with one on the sleeve, the other on the tip. Use a high impedance expression pedal.

Nice wah-ish effect.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Rocketman on March 01, 2014, 12:43:36 AM
Need help with wiring the 3PDT switch. Anyone have wiring diagram/pic?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on March 01, 2014, 01:03:05 AM
http://musicpcb.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Meat-Sphere-build-PDF.pdf
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JZA on March 01, 2014, 12:32:47 PM
As the PCB's are not coming anytime soon I have built a breadboard version direct from the schematic ,

The only thing I can't make sense of is the l.e.d. section on the far right of the schematic ... it shows 9v  ,  sens input , ground , each with 3 pin configurations ?  but without knowing how these connect to the switch i am stuck ... I tried putting the sens input to the poitive side of the l.e.d. parallels and ground to the otherside but nothing? where / how does the 9v connect with the sens/ground .

anyone please ?

Thanks ~ Chris
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: alanp on March 01, 2014, 06:42:02 PM
I wound up doing a layout myself with oshpark, got tired of waiting. http://oshpark.com/shared_projects/equeZ8gM (http://oshpark.com/shared_projects/equeZ8gM)

Linked on a "Well, it works for me" basis. Costs more, too.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on March 02, 2014, 02:54:04 AM
Adding the Intensity expression jack is worth doing -- it should be possible on the Meatsphere by running wires from pins 1 and 3 of the Intensity pot (wire it to the board as normal) to an insulated jack, with one on the sleeve, the other on the tip. Use a high impedance expression pedal.

Nice wah-ish effect.

Tried this, works a charm.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Blitz Krieg on March 03, 2014, 02:52:58 AM
I have built a breadboard version direct from the schematic ,

last time I checked, Taylor's schematic was missing a capacitor between the input buffer and envelope detector
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JZA on March 03, 2014, 11:22:26 AM
I have built a breadboard version direct from the schematic ,

last time I checked, Taylor's schematic was missing a capacitor between the input buffer and envelope detector

Right , thanks ... On the rissole schematic  I can see there's a 10uf between pin 14  on tl074 and the 'send' socket, is that the missing cap on the meatsphere?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Blitz Krieg on March 04, 2014, 02:42:51 AM
yes
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on March 04, 2014, 10:14:48 AM
Rechecking my schem, VREF is also labeled wrong. Should be coming out of the junction of the 22k resistors and 47u cap at top right. 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on March 04, 2014, 06:09:52 PM
yes

What does the missing cap do?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: FuzzAldrin on March 04, 2014, 10:14:55 PM
I have a finished meatsphere build that I haven't tried to debug yet if anyone wants it real cheap. Comes with a drilled box. I just don't have the time to get it running...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: charbot on March 05, 2014, 08:15:26 PM
Hey Fuzz- I sent you a PM
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JZA on March 08, 2014, 12:35:33 AM
Rechecking my schem, VREF is also labeled wrong. Should be coming out of the junction of the 22k resistors and 47u cap at top right. 

Thanks Taylor,  noticed that the Rissole has the vref  at that junction too ,  also  2 more issues . The 1k5 resistor coming from thecolour pot should go to vref not ground (as per Rissole)  . The second issue is also at the colour pot , where it crosses the path between  U1B 7 and Sw4BP ... That. Should be a junction  ?

For anyone reading this .. we are only talking about the schematic .. the PCB. Has these all correct ..(I assume) 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JZA on March 11, 2014, 02:48:08 AM
OK It's 6am and I have just finished a stripboard Vero build of the meatsphere from the schematic . I made a layout file too. However I made I made a few alterations when building so will update that layout tomorrow for anyone whose interested .. 

I ended up using ne5532n dual opamp .
I had some cheap fake vactrols 5c3/2 .. but removed them ane added 2 green diffuse l.e.d's and 2l.d.r's instead ad i couldn't get any envelope movement.   However I. Had actually wired the UP/DOWN switch wrong as this was the most confusing part on the schematic.

I might try the vactrols again .. but I like the way its working on at the moment .

I threw it in a cardboard box and made holes for the pots and switches.. sure looks nasty :)
But sounds raw and very quacky . 

I have an original mutron III  and always wanted an fx loop for it  I feel confident in modding that now I understand the schematic . In the instruction manual I have  it says that amazing effecte made when using two mutrons together ,  well let's find out tomorrow.. pretty sure the mutron vii. Is just 2 in one box with a phaser .

Thanks all for your help . Especially Taylor .
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: FuzzAldrin on March 13, 2014, 04:48:18 PM
I have a finished meatsphere build that I haven't tried to debug yet if anyone wants it real cheap. Comes with a drilled box. I just don't have the time to get it running...


SOLD
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on March 13, 2014, 04:50:06 PM
I have a finished meatsphere build that I haven't tried to debug yet if anyone wants it real cheap. Comes with a drilled box. I just don't have the time to get it running...


SOLD

Dude! Didn't even get a reply to the PM or anything!  ??? Which was sent 20 minutes after you posted that the board was available?   :-\
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: JZA on March 15, 2014, 11:47:05 AM


Dude! Didn't even get a reply to the PM or anything!  ??? Which was sent 20 minutes after you posted that the board was available?   :-\
[/quote]

You are too quick to judge,  perhaps your message didn't send ?

I had a great response and I sent my question two days after seeing the post.

I think your avatar is very apt .

I am not the guy who bought it as too far to justify postage . If you  read the last few pages you will learn that you could build it today with either Vero board or make your own PCB .

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on March 15, 2014, 05:20:57 PM
You are too quick to judge,  perhaps your message didn't send ?

Then that would be odd seeing as I had sent several PMs to Fuzz just the day before regarding a different subject. All were answered. ???  ::)

Quote
If you read the last few pages you will learn that you could build it today with either Vero board or make your own PCB .

Still wondering why Taylor doesn't sell them anymore  ???

Is there another thread explaining why they are no longer carried over at musicpcb? I know the website says "Out of Stock until 2014" but that has been up there since the middle of last year I think!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on March 15, 2014, 11:44:39 PM
I ran out and don't have the resources to order another run yet.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Jopn on March 24, 2014, 03:43:19 PM
Would a preorder scenario work?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: KoenT on April 17, 2014, 11:19:56 AM
Hi everybody,

I really enjoyed building the meat sphere and after swapping the ICs a few times it works. I have a problem with the effects loop however.
Because I didn't the switchable jacks I just connected send and return so the effect worked perfect. I wanted to try the loop so I used regular jacks and when I put a patch cable or a true bypass effect (off) in the loop it also works perfectly. But when I turn on the effect there is a little volume drop, the envelope effect disappears and the effect in the loop also doesn't change the sound (so you just get a clean sound). Does anybody knows what the problem could be?

Thanks!!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on April 17, 2014, 02:18:33 PM
Sorry if this seems obvious but might you have the cables the wrong way around? Send should go to the other effect's input, and that effect's out to return. If you had them backwards they'd work when the external effect is bypassed but kill everything but the clean sound when the ext. effect is on.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: KoenT on April 24, 2014, 04:30:29 PM
You're almost right. I've been stupid. Apparently the wires from send and return cross each other to the jacks. I connected them to the closest jacks.

Thanks again Taylor
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 07, 2014, 09:31:26 PM
For those watching this thread, I have the Meat Sphere board back in stock again, and the website has been redone. Let me know what you think.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: drj on July 09, 2014, 01:49:18 PM
Taylor, Avast antivirus is blocking access to musicpcb.com (and shows a warning about a trojan) the only way I can view musicpcb.com is by temporarily disabling Avast.

it's been like this for months, is anyone else having a problem viewing the site ?  :icon_confused:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 09, 2014, 02:06:25 PM
Yes, there has been some discussion of that problem. As far as I know, a hacker slipped some spam into the MusicPCB header a long time ago and though I removed it a long time ago I guess some malware software still has the site blacklisted. I don't believe there is any danger to your computer going on the site, but if you're unsure, you can send an order to me directly at taylorlivingston [the 'at' symbol] yahoo.com. Just email me with what you'd like to purchase, your country, and I will send a Paypal invoice.

If anybody with web security skills is willing to help me iron this out I will trade PCBs or cash for your help.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: drj on July 09, 2014, 02:18:02 PM
^ Ok, thanks for the info.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Dimitree on July 09, 2014, 03:46:29 PM
Could anyone please explain me what should be the correct resistance values across the 2 points where we put a ldr+parallel resistor, in either full on and full off states?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: tremelo68 on July 11, 2014, 12:22:57 PM
So, I built this about 8 months ago and was not getting great sounds out of the vactrols so when I finally got back to it last week, I tried the green diffused LEDs and LDRs. I got better sounds, but still nothing awesome.

I can see that one of the LEDs does not light up at all. I know the LED is good because I have tested it. Any ideas on where to troubleshoot the non-lighting LED?

Thanks
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 11, 2014, 01:07:07 PM
The envelope follower is the part in the top middle of the board. Under the lm1458 there are two 100R resistors. If one LED lights but the other doesn't I reckon your soldering on the LED or the associated 100r resistor might be cold? Or the up down rotary switch.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: tremelo68 on July 11, 2014, 02:50:58 PM
I'll check that out. Thanks for the quick reply
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lwatford on August 08, 2014, 12:28:35 PM
Early on LaceSensor posted:

Quote
Finished mine.
Some setting give wierd results that dont sound "right" but ive found a good place to put the colour intens and blend that produce nice sounds with all other switch settings.
Something wierd goes on in the down setting, if you max the colour intensity and blend the signal all gets cut.
Im not sure if its just the idiosynscrasies of the device, but the standard lovetone "pure meatball" setting is unacheivable due to this oddness.

Did anyone else have this problem, and did you get it sorted out? The last two of these I've built have had the same issue.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on August 08, 2014, 08:48:48 PM
Nsl32 sound like ass
Use proper led and ldr combo like the real unit
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bcalla on August 16, 2014, 05:05:05 PM
Nsl32 sound like ass
Use proper led and ldr combo like the real unit
Thanks for this post.  I had mine finished and it sounded awful.  Only a few knob settings did anything - most knob positions turned off the effect entirely.  I had a terrible static/hiss on top of the effect.  This sounded like a mess of troubleshooting, but first thing I did was pull the NSL32s and pop in a pair of green LEDs and a couple of LDRs.  Bingo.  Sounds amazing.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bcalla on August 16, 2014, 10:07:05 PM
And here it is, including the Moog switch.

(http://i1254.photobucket.com/albums/hh606/bcalla44/Polpetta/42ee8320-7db3-4b1e-80d6-65f3e3f1e8fe_zps6e659f26.jpg~original)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: yvarg on August 23, 2014, 11:55:39 AM
That's a good looking build, bcalla! I really dig the idea of using a stomp switch for the moog mod! I might borrow that idea, if you don't mind.  ;D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on August 23, 2014, 02:03:50 PM
Can someone give me a link or quick explanation on the Moog mod? Whats it do?  ;D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: yvarg on August 23, 2014, 02:14:29 PM
Can someone give me a link or quick explanation on the Moog mod? Whats it do?  ;D

. . .
Second, a mod I like to call the "Moog switch".
In contrast to the Meatball (which keeps Q constant with frequency) in  the famous Moog ladder filter Q decreases with frequency, which to my knowledge is an important part of the Moog filters sound.
I like this feature since with bass guitar (didn't check with guitar) the bass may become rather unpredictable at certain settings of the Meatball.
Although it may sound cool the sound engineer hates you for this  :icon_lol:
I did a couple of LTSpice simulations to find out that the Moog filters Q frequency dependency can be approximated by adding a 470n cap in series with 10k resistor in the feedback loop of the Meatball.
The "moog switch" is inserted in place of the 10k feedback resistor and has the 10k and the 470n mounted to the switch. It switches between 10k only (meatball mode) and 470n in series with 10k (Moog mode).
For some reason I needed to add a 100k resistor in parallel with the 470n. Without the 100k there was massive distortion. Might be that it was just a cold solder joint on the switch that caused the distortion. Anyway, I didn't care to remove the 100k again since it worked.
Thought I'd share because I really dig the Moog mode. In fact I prefer it with bass guitar.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bcalla on August 23, 2014, 02:19:48 PM
I did test it with guitar, and at some Meatball setting, low notes can become unpredictable as noted above.  The Moog switch brings it back under control.

That said, the Moog switch is not noticeable at most settings.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: yvarg on August 24, 2014, 09:20:59 PM
I just had an interesting thought. Would I be correct in assuming that the effects loop on the Meat Sphere is turned off when the pedal itself is bypassed? I guess what I mean is: if I have a fuzz pedal plugged into the effects loop of the Meat Sphere, and I turn off the Meat Sphere, my signal will no longer be going through the fuzz pedal either, will it? If this is the case, I wonder how hard it would be to modify the circuit so that the effects loop is active even when the pedal is disengaged. I would rather not have to have two dirt pedals on my board just because one is in the effects loop of another pedal, haha!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 25, 2014, 01:43:11 PM
That's true, and I've heard people complain about the original and all the boutique clones because of the effects loop bypass. I think a particular switching arrangement can get around this but IIRC a 4PDT stomp switch is necessary.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: yvarg on August 25, 2014, 08:15:00 PM
You must be thinking of a simpler solution than I am. My immediate thought was to wire two poles of the stomp switch so that when the filter is bypassed the effects loop is added into the bypassed signal, and when the switch is flipped and the filter is in use, the effects loop leads are directed back to the PCB. Of course, taking the LED into account, this requires a 5PDT footswitch. I don't think those exist; at least not for practical hobby use. So I was planning on using a 4PDT to activate a relay. Rather roundabout, but it would do the job, and there'd be space for it in that massive enclosure.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bcalla on August 25, 2014, 10:40:11 PM
I think Taylor's saying you don't need another LED.  If your Meatsphere is in bypass, the LED goes out and the effect loop is connected directly via the additional pole. Stomp again and the effect and LED come on and your loop is disengaged.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: yvarg on August 26, 2014, 10:07:30 AM
I'm not sure I follow what you're saying entirely. I must have made it sound like I wanted to add another LED. What I meant was the stock version of the Meat Sphere's footswitch uses all three rows of contacts on the 3PDT switch (including the original LED on/off switching circuit that's standard in all true bypass pedals. What I'm envisioning for routing the effects loop requires an additional 2 poles on the switch, for a total of 5 poles needed in a switch. I'll draw up a diagram when I get home to clarify, since I'm not great at describing this, haha! :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: yvarg on August 26, 2014, 11:12:07 PM
This is what I had in mind. Maybe one of you has a simpler idea that involves less imaginary switch designs!

(http://i.imgur.com/8ideVw2.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lwatford on September 09, 2014, 09:23:33 AM
Nsl32 sound like ass
Use proper led and ldr combo like the real unit
Thanks for this post.  I had mine finished and it sounded awful.  Only a few knob settings did anything - most knob positions turned off the effect entirely.  I had a terrible static/hiss on top of the effect.  This sounded like a mess of troubleshooting, but first thing I did was pull the NSL32s and pop in a pair of green LEDs and a couple of LDRs.  Bingo.  Sounds amazing.

what value LDR's did you end up using? I ordered some from futurlec, but that was months ago and haven't heard from them.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bcalla on September 09, 2014, 09:55:04 AM
I'm not 100% sure, I had them in stock for a long time.  I think they were from Tayda - I don't remember buying them anywhere else. 

http://www.taydaelectronics.com/photo-conductive-cell-resistor-ldr-650nm-radial-ke-10720.html (http://www.taydaelectronics.com/photo-conductive-cell-resistor-ldr-650nm-radial-ke-10720.html)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lwatford on September 10, 2014, 05:05:14 PM
The LED/LDR is so much better than the VCLs ever were! I used diffused green LEDs, and the medium LDRs from the RatShack pack. Much, much better. Now to get a refund from futurlec...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on September 11, 2014, 05:48:40 AM
You often need to chase futurlec, in some instances they are waiting on stock

I recommend the 2M dark (typically 10k-20k light / 2M dark) LDR with green diffuse LEDs for a good range of sounds from this circuit
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on September 12, 2014, 08:54:03 PM
Theres a mod for the mutron III using the NSL-32's

I think I have over 100 NSL's I got for free that I will see if the mods work out okay. :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: theokbird on October 16, 2014, 07:53:07 PM
Hey there everyone,

this is my first post here, so hello!

i've built the meat sphere and it's very cool, works as expected, EXCEPT! I did the moog mod and when i switch it on there is horrible self oscillation(kinda cool, actually, but hardly useable, however you can tune it via color) and the envelope effect disappears.  did i just wire it incorrectly?  here's some pics:
(http://s27.postimg.org/x0jwbt2mn/IMG_0012_2.jpg) (http://postimg.org/image/x0jwbt2mn/)
(http://s27.postimg.org/6pkaluphr/IMG_0013_2.jpg) (http://postimg.org/image/6pkaluphr/)
(http://s27.postimg.org/lmxd0ls3z/IMG_0014_2.jpg) (http://postimg.org/image/lmxd0ls3z/)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on October 16, 2014, 08:08:13 PM
Red wire....

The one farthest from the cap and resistor...put that red wire down one lug to connect to the 10K resistor.  :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: theokbird on October 16, 2014, 08:22:37 PM
Red wire....

The one farthest from the cap and resistor...put that red wire down one lug to connect to the 10K resistor.  :)

AGH i knew i did something dumb... thanks! just switched it up, sounds very very cool, works as expected now, no more oscillation....only thing about is that horrible popping that occurs when switching...has there been a fix for that?  on certain settings the popping isnt noticeable, but on others its really insane

After listening and tweaking for awhile there are certain useable sounds, but many moments of self oscillation that can occur (particularly with electric bass, in moog mode as well)  but i guess this is just the nature of the pedal...  ironing out the right sound means taking notes and plenty of tweaking to figure out the settings that are actually useable.  i definitely don't know if i could use this live, seems a little too unpredictable.  how is everyone else using this pedal?  are you finding the same degree of unpredictability?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on October 17, 2014, 11:11:26 AM
Most controls on the meatball and other such filters affect the peak detector.  And really, while its cool to adjust these things...its really more a set and forget setup.

Check this out, Dave gives great info.  :)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jllsqRWhjGM
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on October 17, 2014, 01:50:21 PM
Got a question!!!

Should the blend pot actually be a dual ganged with a buffer after it?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: LaceSensor on October 17, 2014, 06:51:45 PM
Got a question!!!

Should the blend pot actually be a dual ganged with a buffer after it?

no...
why do you ask that?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on October 17, 2014, 08:59:35 PM
Last time I used a pedal in the fx loop..in the 50% position of the pot...the volume had a drop off. 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: gilmour_pugliese on November 06, 2014, 01:56:47 PM
Hi, after a bad experience with my first Meatsphere (equipped with VTL5C3), I've bought a second PCB... This time I wanna use LDR+5mm diffuse green led.
These LDRs are good or not?
http://www.ebay.it/itm/10PCS-LDR-Photoconductive-cell-1k-5528-Photo-resistenza-arduino-compatibile-/151352412368?pt=Componenti_elettronici_attivi&hash=item233d4e88d0

specs:
Model: GL5528
Maximum voltage (V-dc): 150
Maximum power consumption (mW): 100
Ambient temperature (° C): -30 --- +70
Spectral peak (nm): 540
Light resistance (10Lux) (KΩ) :10-20
Dark Resistance (MΩ): 1

100λ10: 0.6
Response Time (ms): rose: 20


thanks  :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 06, 2014, 03:04:27 PM
I think that should work OK, the attack time is slower than the VTL5c3 but you might like that more?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: gilmour_pugliese on November 06, 2014, 03:51:34 PM
My first Meatsphere was poorly sensitive to the dynamics... I've checked the PCB several times (everything is ok) and changed a lot of 1458 but the filter was always too poor  :icon_rolleyes:
Now I've picked another PCB and, after testing it with the old VTL5C3s, the envelope is still not good  :icon_rolleyes:
I've thought to buy another pair of 5C3, but after reading some impressions here, I'm thinking to try 5mm diffused green LEDs + LDRs... Vactrols are too expensive and maybe this is not the perfect choice for this pedal  ;D

There's a way to check a VTL5C3?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: alanp on November 06, 2014, 08:47:38 PM
As always, socket if you want to swap values or audition components in a circuit. If you've found the Magic Unicorn Part for that position later, you can solder it into the sockets if you like.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: PackardGoose on December 17, 2014, 12:50:08 PM
Well that's strange... I posted a couple questions here yesterday and they seem to have completely disappeared.  Anyhow, I have a PCB on order, and I THINK I have all the right parts on order now between Smallbear and Mouser. Can't wait to get going!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on December 17, 2014, 01:01:43 PM
Well that's strange... I posted a couple questions here yesterday and they seem to have completely disappeared.  Anyhow, I have a PCB on order, and I THINK I have all the right parts on order now between Smallbear and Mouser. Can't wait to get going!

Something weird happened to the forum, seems some posts from the last few days got deleted:

http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=109469.0

This forum does seem to be the target of hacking sometimes. These things are always reminders for me to donate to the forum, knowing how much trouble Aron is going through to keep it up and running.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: PackardGoose on December 17, 2014, 02:23:56 PM
One of the questions I had was about incorporating the Moog mod.  That's done with a DPDT switch right? So if I used an ordinating 3pdt foot switch I could use the third set of poles to switch a status led, is that correct?  I think I would need that since there's no visual indication of a foot switch's setting.

Taylor, I wasn't sure what lead spacing the caps should be, but it looked like 5mm is pretty standard based on what Smallbear stocks. Is that what the Meat Sphere uses?  I hope that's correct since it's what I ordered.

I have some diffused green LEDs, and ordered three different pairs of photocells from Smallbear to try out in sockets.  None of them exactly matched the specs that LaceSensor recommended earlier in the thread, but hopefully one will work well.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on December 17, 2014, 03:40:18 PM
Yes, 5mm spacing is right, I recommend box film caps to fit cleanly. I don't personally worry about brand so the Topmay caps at Small Bear are fine, as are Epcos, AVX, Kemet, etc. I haven't done the Moog mod but you're right that you can use the third set of switch contacts on a 3pdt to switch an LED on.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: yvarg on March 09, 2015, 01:18:57 AM
So I just finished boxing up a build of the meat sphere. So far, I'm veryy pleased with it. It makes great, funky noises so far, but mine is still a little buggy. For example, when I turn the trigger direction switch from the "up" position to the "down" position, it seems to kill the power to my pedal. The only way to get ANY sound is to turn the blend knob all the way counter-clockwise, so that some of the clean signal comes through. I also put a switch in mine to toggle between the "moog mod" and the original components. The moog mod is fantastic! It really tames the insane bass resonance of some notes on my pedal. I remember seeing that some folks had placed a resistor in parallel with two lugs of the "color" pot earlier in the thread, but I never could find any info on the value of the resistor. Anyone have any brief info on this color pot mod? I'm trying to upload a photo of my pedal, but imgur is being obnoxious right now. I'll post a photo of my build later though; as it was my first time working with waterslide decals, I'm fairly proud of the results. :icon_biggrin:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: tremelo68 on March 09, 2015, 05:57:56 PM
Anyone interested in buying one boxed and working but not finished (knobs, graphics, etc)?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: tremelo68 on March 10, 2015, 08:30:41 AM
Here's some pics of it. Asking $75+shipping.

(http://tapatalk.imageshack.com/v2/15/03/10/4b50962f4d85841d740e554a8a97ea97.jpg)

(http://tapatalk.imageshack.com/v2/15/03/10/80a99ff09e1af5730911611041580350.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on March 10, 2015, 12:14:34 PM
Might want to move that to the For Sale section...  ;D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: tremelo68 on March 10, 2015, 05:35:52 PM
Sorry. Will do
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Beo on April 12, 2015, 02:55:43 PM
I'm still struggling with my build. Using the LM1458 and green diffused LED + LDR. I'm seeing some of the weirdness reported by other builders; poor sensitivity, effect loss and generally inconsistent behavior with the controls. Seems to work different in and out of the box too. I'll keep debugging. One thing that tripped me up is that the board layout is slightly different than the schematic, with in-line resistors / pots order switched... perfectly fine but made ringing out connectivity and grounds a little tricky. If anyone has discovered any tricks or gotchas to getting a consistent build, let us know!

Not having the real thing makes it difficult to know how it should work, and respond to the controls. One thing I am interested in is figuring out which controls and switch settings are most usable for guitar. I would like to do a schematic / layout for a simplified version, one that keeps the main useful controls and filter/trigger settings for guitar use. Might then be able to use regular toggle switches instead of rotary for a smaller footprint. Anyone have any comments on which controls and switch positions seem most useful for guitar (or which ones have little usefulness)?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nocentelli on April 12, 2015, 05:52:57 PM
Half bandwidth, up swept LPF (i.e. harder picking = more treble),  attack fully off, decay fully on, blend fully wet, sensitivity half/set to taste, colour and intensity half/to taste. The key (ime) seems to be that attack has to be set very low, and decay set high to get a good noticeable sweep: you can lower decay for a shorter, quicker sweep, or you can slightly increase attack from minimum, but the filter will not sweep at with combinations of higher attack and lowered decay settings. Additionally, the down sweep mode needs a higher sensitivity setting to get it to trigger: I tend to flip the bandwidth to full whenever I use the down sweep to give it more signal.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Beo on April 12, 2015, 07:32:12 PM
Half bandwidth, up swept LPF (i.e. harder picking = more treble),  attack fully off, decay fully on, blend fully wet, sensitivity half/set to taste, colour and intensity half/to taste. The key (ime) seems to be that attack has to be set very low, and decay set high to get a good noticeable sweep: you can lower decay for a shorter, quicker sweep, or you can slightly increase attack from minimum, but the filter will not sweep at with combinations of higher attack and lowered decay settings. Additionally, the down sweep mode needs a higher sensitivity setting to get it to trigger: I tend to flip the bandwidth to full whenever I use the down sweep to give it more signal.

Thanks. Maybe my pedal is normal, and I'm overdoing it on the controls. I'll try out your suggestions. This info makes me think the circuit could be reworked to be less finicky, although maybe less versatile.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Beo on April 12, 2015, 09:45:04 PM
Okay, getting much better sounds out of this now. Seems like I need sensitivity dialed in for my guitar, attack low and decay high. Then I need colour and intensity all the way up. With this, I can pretty much trigger the filter in most switch positions and get different sounds. I still think somethings not right, as decreasing colour from max seems to kill the trigger. And only in a few settings can I up the attack or decrease the decay and keep the filter. Any one else find that colour needs to be maxed?

Here's some helpful links:
http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=65545.0
http://www.effectsdatabase.com/model/lovetone/meatball#
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Beo on April 12, 2015, 10:27:49 PM
Some eye candy...

(http://i1105.photobucket.com/albums/h359/travispike/d0961cf2-af6d-4724-b0cc-887a2338fd82_zpsztsqb2b2.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nocentelli on April 13, 2015, 01:08:17 AM
Wow,  that is beautiful. RE: the colour pot - do you have lug 1+2 connected? Some schematics (not sure about Taylor's) have all three lugs connected to different spots, leading to very little resonance (and so barely noticeable sweep) until the colour is almost max'ed: with lugs 1+2 tied and connected to the first filter non-inverting input, and lug 3 to the bandpass output, the colour control gives a smooth increase in resonance across the whole of the pot's travel.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Beo on April 13, 2015, 03:13:59 AM
Wow,  that is beautiful. RE: the colour pot - do you have lug 1+2 connected? Some schematics (not sure about Taylor's) have all three lugs connected to different spots, leading to very little resonance (and so barely noticeable sweep) until the colour is almost max'ed: with lugs 1+2 tied and connected to the first filter non-inverting input, and lug 3 to the bandpass output, the colour control gives a smooth increase in resonance across the whole of the pot's travel.

I don't know of anyone else who has come across this, but this is news to me. All other schematics I've seen have all three lugs connected separately. It's late, so I won't try jumpering lugs til tomorrow night. Your explanation is pretty clear, but here's a snippet of Taylor's schematic that shows the colour pot wiring. Thanks for helping. The people on this site are awesome!

(http://i1105.photobucket.com/albums/h359/travispike/Meatball_color_zps6hytqmbg.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Beo on April 13, 2015, 03:29:47 AM
By they way, the inspiration for the pedal layout is Mike Gordon of Phish... awesome bass player. He uses the meatball for some killer bass runs, including the intro to down with disease. Being a guitar player, I'm hoping to lock in one or two funk settings I can rely on. This filter seems sensitive...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nocentelli on April 13, 2015, 01:51:30 PM
(http://i80.photobucket.com/albums/j190/Leeroyfunk/meatball%20colour%20pot_zpsfljtknxc.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Beo on April 13, 2015, 10:42:31 PM
Thanks Leo, I put in the jumper (which I now know as the colour mod) and it made a big difference. Thanks!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on April 14, 2015, 07:53:49 AM
Did Taylor ever fix the layout to include the missing electro cap that is on the originals?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on April 14, 2015, 03:14:48 PM
I've never changed the PCB layout, but I think what you're referring to is an error in the schematic, not the PCB itself. That is something I should fix in the docs but the PCB doesn't have any missing parts as far as I know.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on April 14, 2015, 06:02:19 PM
I've never changed the PCB layout, but I think what you're referring to is an error in the schematic, not the PCB itself. That is something I should fix in the docs but the PCB doesn't have any missing parts as far as I know.

You are missing a 10uF electro between the Send and U1D Pin 14. On your schematic, you just have a solid connection between the two. On the original units, there is a 10uF electro between the them. The positive side towards U1D Pin 14  ;D

Is it on the PCB? If it is... it is just a paperwork drill...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on April 14, 2015, 06:10:40 PM
Yes, it's on the PCB. Yes, only the document needs to be updated.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Beo on April 14, 2015, 07:25:24 PM
Yes, it's on the PCB. Yes, only the document needs to be updated.

The documentation threw me off a bit during my debugging. For example, I noticed some inline pots and resistors that were in opposite order on the PCB. For the Colour pot, it looks like the 1k5 resistor terminates to ground on the schematic, but it in fact connects to vref correctly on the PCB and the vref notation is missing in the document. None of these are big deals, especially now that I have a working build, but a doc update could help future builders. I'd recommend discussing and showing the colour mod in the pdf, as it really seems to be an essential/mandatory mod. The green diffused LED/LDR combo would also be a good recommendation in the doc. Showing the fourth No Connection poles for the Range switch would also help confirm there are four switch positions for that control. Of course this thread is essential reading as well!
Thanks for the great pcb Taylor.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on April 14, 2015, 07:56:52 PM
OK, well, the missing cap is fixed, new file (http://www.musicpcb.com/s/Meat-Sphere-build-PDF-updated.pdf) is here. I will try to work on more extensive updates.

edit: Actually, let me throw this out: I am extremely busy at the moment, I no longer have the original schematic files, and doc creation has never been my strong suit anyway. So if anybody reading this would be up to make some nicer-looking docs with updated content in exchange for dollars or PCBs, please message me.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: suncrush on June 03, 2015, 02:20:23 PM
Is there a way to mod this pedal so that it works as a fixed wah, in addition to working as an autowah?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: tremelo68 on June 03, 2015, 03:04:43 PM
I finally, after a year of letting it sit on the shelf unfinished, troubleshot it and got it fully working. Now I hear the reason why it is so loved. What an amazing filter. Very musical and full of tone options.

Did the Moog mod and that is worth adding for sure. Also, used 5mm green diffused LEDs, as the vactrols were not doing it for me. 

This forum has been very useful. Thanks for the info.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nocentelli on June 03, 2015, 03:37:31 PM
Is there a way to mod this pedal so that it works as a fixed wah, in addition to working as an autowah?

The bandwidth switch (the one that switches between a larger and smaller value input cap to the envelope section) should be an on-off-on arrangement so there is one position where the guitar is disconnected from the envelope detector. This will give a fixed eq setting that you can adjust with all the filter controls (lp/bp/hp, colour, intensity, range, up/down, and blend).
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: suncrush on June 05, 2015, 10:29:24 AM
I apologize if this has been answered (but hey, it's a long thread!)

It looks like the loop is only engaged when the pedal is on, so that any effects you put there can only be used when the filter is engaged.  Is that right?  Am I reading this wrong?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nocentelli on June 05, 2015, 11:52:39 AM
That's correct, but you can modify the bypass wiring so pedals in the loop are active whether or not the filter is engaged. The drawback is that you need to wire the guitar input direct to the input buffer, and use the footswitch to direct the loop return signal either direct to the output (bypass) or through the filter section to the output (filter engaged): This now means that the guitar signal is permanently buffered, I.e. not true bypass. This may or not be an issue for you.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: yvarg on June 07, 2015, 07:26:34 PM
If you're willing to add another small board inside your enclosure, you can create the effects-loop-though mod without forcing the guitar's signal through any of the filter's buffers. I used a DPDT relay that's triggered by the extra pole of a 4PDT stomp switch used for the normal effect on/off. It's just a complex way to add another pair of contacts that are triggered by stepping on the stomp switch. It's not elegant, but it works!

Speaking of mods, has anyone come up with a way to make the Blend knob more effective at blending the wet and dry signals?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nocentelli on June 08, 2015, 04:54:34 PM
It's mentioned some way back in the thread that the phase relationship through the filter opamps makes the lowpass blend less effective than the bandpass. I'll have a browse back through, as I only use it on lowpass, and there's a noticeable dip in the middle.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: yvarg on June 08, 2015, 10:37:32 PM
That makes more sense. I, too, only use it in the lowpass mode, and that blend knob would be pretty useful if I could get it to work.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: add4 on July 23, 2015, 11:05:12 AM
Ok i'm digging out my meat sphere after a looong time and i want to finish populating it and making it work
i'd like to centralize all the things i found in the thread so far

- Moog mod: which is not mandatory
- Colour mod which involves putting a jumper between pin 2 and 3 of the color pot. IT IS NEEDED TO HAVE A CORRECTLY FUNCTIONAL COLOUR POT (right?)
- don't use vactrols, use green diffused leds and ????? LDRs? (does anyone have a reference? places to buy the correct ones?)
- LM1458 required to make the envelope work painlessly

is there anything else? could anyone point me to the correct LDRs?

thanks
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bcalla on July 23, 2015, 11:12:02 AM
I can answer a couple.
Moog mod - I recommend this.  I did test it with guitar, and at some Meatball setting, low notes can become unpredictable as noted above.  The Moog switch brings it back under control.  That said, the Moog switch is not noticeable at most settings.

I used LDRs from Tayda.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on July 23, 2015, 05:08:33 PM
Diffused LEDs and Tayda LDRs are good. Make sure the LDRs can get to 2M dark.

Make sure your 1458 IC is known good. Don't use Tayda or eBay clones. Go with a reputable seller for these. Bad or out-of-spec 1458s will cause the pedal to not function properly.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Fine Mechanics on August 24, 2015, 04:47:57 PM
Just finished my build, but unfortunately it's not working.

When the effect is engaged I get clean signal when blend is below 100%, the LED triggers/flashes along with the envelope but I don't get any wet sound. The only issue I can find on the board are with the little holes meant to be left empty to the top right of the 47u cap above the LED (I'm looking at the side of the board with text where the components are mounted). I accidentally lifted the pad on the top of these two holes after trying to get rid of some solder that had fallen into the hole. The lower hole also has solder in it but I didn't attempt to clear this after lifting the pad on the top hole.

Any ideas what could be causing the issue? Unfortunately I don't have a VM/audio proble to hand to post readings/explore where audio may be dropping out myself.

I'm using a pair of vtl5c3/2 vactrols. LM1458N and TL074CN. Any help that you could offer would be hugely appreciated at this stage!!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 24, 2015, 07:16:09 PM
Just finished my build, but unfortunately it's not working.

When the effect is engaged I get clean signal when blend is below 100%, the LED triggers/flashes along with the envelope but I don't get any wet sound. The only issue I can find on the board are with the little holes meant to be left empty to the top right of the 47u cap above the LED (I'm looking at the side of the board with text where the components are mounted). I accidentally lifted the pad on the top of these two holes after trying to get rid of some solder that had fallen into the hole. The lower hole also has solder in it but I didn't attempt to clear this after lifting the pad on the top hole.

Any ideas what could be causing the issue? Unfortunately I don't have a VM/audio proble to hand to post readings/explore where audio may be dropping out myself.

I'm using a pair of vtl5c3/2 vactrols. LM1458N and TL074CN. Any help that you could offer would be hugely appreciated at this stage!!

Those holes are vias (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Via_(electronics)) - they connect traces on the bottom copper layer to the top. It doesn't matter if you get solder in them, as long as it's not bridging to any other pads to short them together. If you lifted the pad and didn't fix it, it's very likely this is at least part of the issue you're having.

What you can do is run a wire to complete the connection that was lost with the lifted pad. Here's a picture. Connect a wire between the two points that have arrows pointing at them. In case you don't have thin enough wire to connect to the via, you can solder the wire from the optocoupler pad with the arrow, to pin 6 of the TL074. This is connected to that same via - it's farther to run the wire but a larger pad in case you have trouble soldering to the via.

http://imgur.com/37fvNyC
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Fine Mechanics on August 25, 2015, 03:41:47 PM
Just finished my build, but unfortunately it's not working.

When the effect is engaged I get clean signal when blend is below 100%, the LED triggers/flashes along with the envelope but I don't get any wet sound. The only issue I can find on the board are with the little holes meant to be left empty to the top right of the 47u cap above the LED (I'm looking at the side of the board with text where the components are mounted). I accidentally lifted the pad on the top of these two holes after trying to get rid of some solder that had fallen into the hole. The lower hole also has solder in it but I didn't attempt to clear this after lifting the pad on the top hole.

Any ideas what could be causing the issue? Unfortunately I don't have a VM/audio proble to hand to post readings/explore where audio may be dropping out myself.

I'm using a pair of vtl5c3/2 vactrols. LM1458N and TL074CN. Any help that you could offer would be hugely appreciated at this stage!!

Those holes are vias (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Via_(electronics)) - they connect traces on the bottom copper layer to the top. It doesn't matter if you get solder in them, as long as it's not bridging to any other pads to short them together. If you lifted the pad and didn't fix it, it's very likely this is at least part of the issue you're having.

What you can do is run a wire to complete the connection that was lost with the lifted pad. Here's a picture. Connect a wire between the two points that have arrows pointing at them. In case you don't have thin enough wire to connect to the via, you can solder the wire from the optocoupler pad with the arrow, to pin 6 of the TL074. This is connected to that same via - it's farther to run the wire but a larger pad in case you have trouble soldering to the via.

http://imgur.com/37fvNyC

Many thanks for the input Taylor. I've fixed the pad but unfortunately no luck. I've  echecked and reflowed all joints on the board, double checked all wiring and IC orientations but still no change. Dry signal when blend is below 100%, LED reacting to the envelope but no wet signal. Looks like I'll need to go'n grab the bits to build an audio probe over the weekend...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 25, 2015, 07:38:56 PM
You're welcome. To build the most basic audio probe, you literally just need to cut off one end of a 1/4" cable, and solder a capacitor (100n or so) to the conductor. To probe you just need to connect the shielding of the cable to the ground in your circuit and then poke the free end of the cap at various parts of the circuit. So all you absolutely need is a cap and a cable. The rest just makes it more convenient to use.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: TonyUK on September 22, 2015, 11:47:54 AM
Hi guys, sorry, TOTAL NOOB here. Desperately want to build the meatsphere and big cheese clone,Ive ordered my pcb from Taylor, But I'm somewhat confused when searching mouser for all the parts. I added what I thought but havnt pulled the trigger on the order yet so I hoped one of you nice people could have a quick look at the basket and tell me if I'm either on the right track or screwing it up.

http://www.mouser.com/ProjectManager/ProjectDetail.aspx?AccessID=748d93450d

Thanks guys.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on September 22, 2015, 12:45:42 PM
One of your pots is "solder lug" instead of PCB mount. You can still use it, just not as easy and the board is designed for board mount pots.

You've already taken the plunge, I hope you have read the threads and know this is a dicey build. It is the only pedal that I have built (more than 50, less than 100) that only sort of works. Good you are buying from reliable supplier as off-brand opamps can cause problems in this.

Consider ordering more than "1" of everything you need.

Consider trying some of the easier filter effects first. Some you can do on stripboard, and there are great pcbs out there for mutron, FSH-1, mxr, etc. Let this one sit until you are used to the process, have debugging skills, have read all the threads about envelope filters and about the Meatsphere.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Granny Gremlin on September 22, 2015, 01:29:51 PM
One of your pots is "solder lug" instead of PCB mount. You can still use it, just not as easy and the board is designed for board mount pots.

It's not incredibly pretty and dubious in terms of structural integrity, but that is of minimal concern here considering it's only 1 of, what, like 10 mount points ( 6 pots + 4 switches right?) on this PCB, but it is pretty easy to mod a solder lug pot to work as PCB mount:

(https://40.media.tumblr.com/499ae5888bc677eac6b4683ab07d88d3/tumblr_nqik8bPRhI1unxz8do3_1280.jpg)

more pics and verbal explanation: http://grannygremlinaudio.tumblr.com/post/122438008623/aurora-ross-compressor-w-mods-white-pcb-and
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: TonyUK on September 22, 2015, 01:46:15 PM
Thanks guys, I havnt actually ordered yet so I can easily amend it. Was totally blown away with all the variations in the components that come up in the search, I was like "ok which one is it" I chose the ones that matched the pdf list as close as I could. Just needed a more experienced eye to see if they would be ok. Theres a few bits mouser didn't do like the Vactorals and the 10k resistors which I'm, sure I can source elsewhere.

Really appreciate you giving me some pointers.

Idy, you think the Big Cheese vero is an easier starting point?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on September 22, 2015, 06:34:40 PM
I don't know, Big Cheese on vero looks pretty complicated. It all depends on your being real careful in making the cuts on the vero, your soldering skills, understanding off board wiring. There are simpler circuits out there.

Don't get me wrong, the Meatsphere PCB is a thing of beauty. Just a touchy circuit. And for a fuzz Cheese source is on the big side for a first go on vero. PCB is awfully nice the first go unless you are doing something modest.

Once you make one that works though, prepare to be hooked. Go ahead and order resistors by the 100...

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on September 23, 2015, 01:02:08 PM
Another tip about ordering: counter-intuitive, but Mouser is not often cheaper than the guys who cater to pedal builders until you order large quantities. Did you check out Small Bear? For ordering a few parts they are often better than Mouser. Tayda is cheap but a lot of times ICs are "not exactly" what you need, generics that are not worth it for something tricky like the Meatsphere. But good for resistors, caps, etc.

Mouser is daunting and most of us have a baggie or two of something useless from mouser 'cause we didn't read the entire description.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Granny Gremlin on September 23, 2015, 02:14:11 PM
Yeah, ICs transistors, pots (best selection of values and options like shaft and tab type) and diodes I get from SB - their prices are great even at low qty and they are reputable/reliable.  Tants from Tayda or a local shop I like.  Switches, LEDs, bezels and DC connectors from Tayda or BitchesLoveMySwitches (or Sm Bear if already ordering other stuff).  Enclosures from Sm Bear or Bitches (best price hands down; fewer powdercoat options tho).  Resistors and film/electrolytic/MLCC caps from Mouser (buy these in bulk and you know you're getting proper stuff - Xicon metal resistors or KOA carbons, TDK box film caps now that the Panasonics are disco'd; Nichon low profile electros, Murata MLCCs - all competitive price-wise with the other guys if you buy qty).

Basically, if you're gonna be into this, just go buy all the typical values of resistors, film caps and electro/tants in qty to save (you will go through a bag of 200 10k resistors or 100 0.1uF caps easy; there's at least a few of each on every build).  This will help: http://diy-fever.com/misc/value-statistics/ . Depending on what projects you're building, the right half of those graphs may not be that accurate, but the left half is bang on in my experience.



Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on September 25, 2015, 06:45:06 PM
Hey gang!!!

If you had to choose between watercolor green leds ( VERY lightly green ) or diffused green, which ones would you go with?

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Granny Gremlin on September 26, 2015, 08:58:09 AM
Depends on the finish of the enclosure.  I just put a waterclear green in an Echo Base, which is diagonally striped with a pastelish green and a metallic mauve.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on September 26, 2015, 11:54:20 AM
Hey gang!!!

If you had to choose between watercolor green leds ( VERY lightly green ) or diffused green, which ones would you go with?

Diffused! All Lovetone pedals except the Flanger and Wobulator used Diffused Green LEDs for the LDRs.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on September 26, 2015, 05:01:16 PM
Anybody got a drilling template for this sucker??
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: nosamiam on September 27, 2015, 12:36:55 AM
I'm pretty sure it was included in the project file on the Musicpcb site when I built mine. But I don't see it there now. There's no way I measured all that by hand so I must have had a template. Maybe email them and ask for it?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on September 28, 2015, 12:46:23 AM
Nope, there was never a drilling template in the build doc unfortunately. It's a good idea, though. The problem is that a given template would only work for a single potentiometer style. So really it needs to be 2 or 3 templates to cover the different PCB mount pots with .2" spacing that people use, which don't have the same distance from solder pin to shaft. But that's doable, I'll work on it.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 1878 on September 28, 2015, 01:13:38 PM
There's a drill template on page 2 of this thread. I used it but it was a little bit off for the PCB mounted pots I used. Nothing unusable though. My build is on page 17 if you want to check.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on September 29, 2015, 11:27:54 PM
One more Meatsphere out of the Fail Pail!

I built this years ago. At first no envelope at all. Replaced generic 1458 with brand name, got an envelope but really harsh "WHAP" at the attack, really not useful. Finally heeded the voice that keeps on shouting "Vactrols bad... make your own with green LED plus LDR 1m..." Think that was Lace Sensor. I put in some home-mades and now it works as advertised.

Funny thing: I have all these assorted LDRs from various projects (tayda, small bear, radio shack) and they all measure over 20M dark. I just bought from several sellers on ebay, specifically 1M, and these also all measure... over 20m. I have a Cheap centek multimeter that goes to 20M (it takes a while) and test them by rolling them in electrical tape. The Vactrols I pulled off the Meatsphere also measure over 20M.

Further Meatsphere question: the dual opamp is not “biased” but everything is referenced to ground. Is this because it is handling DC and not audio? But this is based on the Mutron III and schematics for that (and its derivatives) show it running off a bipolar supply with the inputs referenced to ground, so what gives? If the circuit was a copy these should have been referenced to midpoint... right?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on September 30, 2015, 12:22:39 AM

Further Meatsphere question: the dual opamp is not “biased” but everything is referenced to ground. Is this because it is handling DC and not audio? But this is based on the Mutron III and schematics for that (and its derivatives) show it running off a bipolar supply with the inputs referenced to ground, so what gives? If the circuit was a copy these should have been referenced to midpoint... right?

When I put the project together, I went on the information available, but I agree with you that some elements of this design seem a bit weird. I don't recall if anybody's ever checked this design against a real MeatBall (anybody got one lying around?) so I can't say whether that's because it was designed weird or some detail got lost in the telephone game. If I was going to design my own envelope filter, which in fact I have done, I would do both the filter and the envelope follower differently (and I did) but at the time people didn't want "some filter" but this particular one.

I believe some of the issues people have had with the dual opamp have to do with the way the LM 1458 handles swinging down to ground when powered on a single supply. In this circuit it can work even though the opamp isn't really supposed to be able to sweep down to its negative rail, because ultimately we just need to light an LED and the available output swing with a 9V supply voltage is plenty for that. It doesn't matter too much if it clips given the non-linear response of the LED anyway.

But, looking at it again, I wonder if more consistent results might be achieved with the LM358, which is designed to run on a single supply and can swing down to the negative rail with no issues. If anybody has a working 'sphere and wants to try this out, that would make for some interesting info. I don't have one built up but I'd be happy to get some of the 358s and send them to people to test. Feel free to PM if you want to give it a go.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on October 05, 2015, 01:11:31 PM
Thanks Taylor. Patience of a saint. I have some LM358 and tried. Worth a spin! Without careful A/B it's hard to say how they are different, but they are.  LM358 surely works and maybe is a little more controllable.

For a while I was looking at making Mutron/Naughtyfish with all the controls... but now I think of just making more Meatspheres. My latest one was much easier. Green LEDs and LDRs.

I like to solder pots onto the board before I have a box drilled to test the board. To make the pots and rotary swtches line up with the level of the box I found I could solder the pots in with the ends of the "pins" just barely level with the component side of the board. Put them in all the way and the pots are too close. Then of course drill or file the holes in the box a little big to prevent stress.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on October 09, 2015, 08:00:49 PM
I added a switch so the blend control could either blend the filtered effect with the signal out of the input buffer (stock) or the signal from the return. It sounded kind of funny blending a fuzzed filtered sound with a clean signal, I liked the “phasey” setting available with the blend on clean sounds so I thought…

I pulled up leg one of the “blend” control, the clean input. The leg of the pot went to the middle of a switch. The hole on the board went to one throw, and the return jack tip went to the other.

It works as I expected BUT:  when I set the mode to Bandpass I get feedback/oscillating when the color knob is turned up even a bit. That is a feedback control… If I play I get crazy siren like whoops and screeches, very loud

This only happens when the fuzz box is engaged. With the fuzz bypassed everything is OK.

Any ideas? Can I fix this?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on October 09, 2015, 11:59:54 PM
I realize that now the input and output (plus filter) of my fuzz are lug one and three of a 10k pot.  Maybe this is not such a great idea.... But it's an improvement on the settings where it works.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on October 10, 2015, 12:08:39 AM
Yeah, that behavior makes sense with it connected that way. It's sort of turning the blend knob into a parallel feedback path, with as you say a fairly low value resistance (the 10k pot) sort of in parallel with the colour pot. You could try adding a buffer on the return input?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on October 10, 2015, 11:03:40 PM
Thanks. Opamp buffer between return jack and switch. Problem solved. Anybody who wants to mod the blend control can do this.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Granny Gremlin on October 27, 2015, 04:25:03 PM
I've been trying to wrap my head around all the (sometimes conflicting - e.g. whether the color pot mod/fix is to jumper pins 1&2 or 2&3.... turns out it's 1&2) info in this thread so I just wanted to run some stuff by y'all to make sure I have my head wrapped around it correctly

1) Moog mod
It was stated that the switch (populated with resistor and extra cap/resistor in parallel) should be connected in place of the 10K resistor that connects UIA pin2 to U1C pin8.  Also stated that if by chance one connects it in place of the 10K connecting U1A pins 1 and 2 it will also work, but weirdly.  Then there was this post (http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=92894.msg994479#msg994479) showing the place one person connected it (and although I see that their switch wiring was wrong, as mentioned in the next post) nobody payed any attention to where the switch leads were going to on the PCB.  Based on tracing the PCB I think it is going to the wrong place, but I wanted confirmation; my take on it:

(http://grannygremlin.com/projects/MeatSphereMoogModConnection.jpg)

2) Bypass wiring mod (maintains fx loop in bypass mode vs stock wiring)
Taylor mentioned that it can be done with a 4P2T stomp (which exist - Tayda has them for $4.50; same price at Bitches).  In this post (http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=92894.msg988513#msg988513) is a diagram showing the use of of a (fictional?) 5P2T to do this and (in the post before) wondering how it would be possible with a 4P2T.  Somebody suggested the LED wiring was superfluous (it isn't). What is superfluous is switching the send/return jack connections from PCB to I/O jacks at the bypass switch because there's no need... I think ... Anyway, just  wanted to post my idea for this for other brains to confirm (and then I'm sure this will help a lot of people out):

(http://grannygremlin.com/projects/MeatSphereBypassSwitchFXloopMod.jpg)

Thanks guys.

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on January 02, 2016, 04:48:44 AM
I've been trying to wrap my head around all the (sometimes conflicting - e.g. whether the color pot mod/fix is to jumper pins 1&2 or 2&3.... turns out it's 1&2) info in this thread so I just wanted to run some stuff by y'all to make sure I have my head wrapped around it correctly

1) Moog mod
It was stated that the switch (populated with resistor and extra cap/resistor in parallel) should be connected in place of the 10K resistor that connects UIA pin2 to U1C pin8.  Also stated that if by chance one connects it in place of the 10K connecting U1A pins 1 and 2 it will also work, but weirdly.  Then there was this post (http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=92894.msg994479#msg994479) showing the place one person connected it (and although I see that their switch wiring was wrong, as mentioned in the next post) nobody payed any attention to where the switch leads were going to on the PCB.  Based on tracing the PCB I think it is going to the wrong place, but I wanted confirmation; my take on it:

(http://grannygremlin.com/projects/MeatSphereMoogModConnection.jpg)


Thanks guys.

For the colour mod you connect the wiper to the lug connected to the 1k5. 

As indicated in this post
http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=92894.msg810973#msg810973 (http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=92894.msg810973#msg810973)
it's the top 10k resistor that connects UIA pin2 to U1C pin8 not the one you indicated in green.
Sorry for the late reply.

Regards,
Markus
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Granny Gremlin on January 18, 2016, 01:48:57 PM
No worries I been busy and haven't had time to move much on this.  So if that's not the right spot (I traced it, but had to guess a bit as it's a dbl-sided PCB and I had it populated already so some bits were blocked from view)- when you say top one, you mean the one just below the swicth; above the one with red leads in the pic?  I'll try tracing again.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 18, 2016, 02:55:59 PM
I can't hear any difference with the moog switch. I have read and re-read the thread and don't think there is a lot of explanation/verification on it. One guy simulated it and liked what it did for his bass, maybe I missed something. Q gets lets as frequency goes up, right? Only affects some settings of LP/BP/HP?
I have yet to hear a difference. Have tried only guitars, but both solid body and electro-acoustic.
So I guess I should ask: Anybody out there hear a real difference on this mod?
I did try it wrong a few times, had to rewire the switch, have looked at the various illustrations and schematic.

But oh how useful is the switch that allows you to blend in either the send or the return with the filtered effect! (buffered it must be.)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on January 19, 2016, 04:46:02 AM
No worries I been busy and haven't had time to move much on this.  So if that's not the right spot (I traced it, but had to guess a bit as it's a dbl-sided PCB and I had it populated already so some bits were blocked from view)- when you say top one, you mean the one just below the swicth; above the one with red leads in the pic?  I'll try tracing again.
Exactly, it's the one below the switch above the one with red leads in the pic.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: markusw on January 19, 2016, 05:05:58 AM
I can't hear any difference with the moog switch. I have read and re-read the thread and don't think there is a lot of explanation/verification on it. One guy simulated it and liked what it did for his bass, maybe I missed something. Q gets lets as frequency goes up, right? Only affects some settings of LP/BP/HP?
I have yet to hear a difference. Have tried only guitars, but both solid body and electro-acoustic.
So I guess I should ask: Anybody out there hear a real difference on this mod?
I did try it wrong a few times, had to rewire the switch, have looked at the various illustrations and schematic.

But oh how useful is the switch that allows you to blend in either the send or the return with the filtered effect! (buffered it must be.)
With the "Moog switch" the resonance is dependent on the frequency, at lower frequencies there is less resonance than at higher frequencies.
Therefore, it tames the resonance at low frequencies.
The difference between "Meatball" and "Moog" mode is most obvious if the filter range is set lowest and intensity is also set to low.
In "Meatball" mode the low frequencies can become rather unpredictable.   
The difference is clearly more obvious with my bass guitar than with my Telecaster. With bass guitar for me it's an essential mod, in fact I never use my Meatsphere in "Meatball" mode.
Since I always use LP mode I can not really comment on HP or BP. 

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Granny Gremlin on January 19, 2016, 10:52:35 AM
Thanks.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 27, 2016, 09:22:47 PM
Thanks Marcusw
I'll have to try it with bass.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DrKoester on February 07, 2016, 01:38:01 PM
Hey group - i built this project about 3 years ago for my brother and I'm finally building one for myself. 

Unfortunately I don't have many notes or pics from my first go and I can't recall how the rotary switches are oriented on the board.  'Range' and 'Up/Down' have the A, B, and C labeled on the board but it doesn't correspond to the lettered logs on my switches (which are Alpha from Small Bear).

Sorry if this has already been clarified somewhere else - I couldn't find it in this thread.

Thanks in advance for your help!

Update: found the answer herehttp://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=104025.msg930003#msg930003 (http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=104025.msg930003#msg930003)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chemosis on April 19, 2016, 02:40:29 PM
i have the same problem and ive built 2. the first one had hardly any sensitivity and no real wah sound. very sublte light effect only and now it dosent work at all. it just creates a loud white noise sound. now my second one also just creates white noise and ive even resolder most components and took the stomp switch out of the equation and tried different IC's and im getting to the point where i just want to pay someone to trouble shoot these 2 meatspheres for me
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: DrKoester on May 17, 2016, 12:49:53 PM
My previous build used the VTLs which I thought sounded decent but I've been swayed by previous posts to use the LDRs.   think I understand the LED/LDR but if someone can confirm for me that'd be great. 

Use one of these green LEDs: http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/led-t-1-3-4-5mm-diffused/
The '+' mark is on the board is for the positive leg of the LED, negative goes in the hole directly below.

Use a LDR like this: http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/photocells-cds-5mm-diameter/
Which is ideal? PN 8104 that has the 2M dark resistance?

Also, does the LED need to 'face' the LDR with any particular orientation to provide the greatest light or is that inconsequential since it is diffused?

Thanks in advance, Tom
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on May 17, 2016, 01:39:55 PM
My previous build used the VTLs which I thought sounded decent but I've been swayed by previous posts to use the LDRs.   think I understand the LED/LDR but if someone can confirm for me that'd be great. 

Use one of these green LEDs: http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/led-t-1-3-4-5mm-diffused/
The '+' mark is on the board is for the positive leg of the LED, negative goes in the hole directly below.

With the board right side up so you can read the text: yes, the LED's positive leg (anode) go to the pad marked with the +.
The LED's negative leg (cathode) goes to the pad directly to the left of the one with the +.
The LDR goes into the two pads below the box reading "VTL5C3," and it doesn't matter which way around it goes in.

Quote
Use a LDR like this: http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/photocells-cds-5mm-diameter/
Which is ideal? PN 8104 that has the 2M dark resistance?

None of these have the same range of resistance as the 5c3, but that may be what other people liked about the response. I guess the closest one is 9200 - the others all have less range, which would keep the frequency sweep within a smaller area - may be more expressive and less quacky, to use vague sound terms.  :icon_wink:

Quote
Also, does the LED need to 'face' the LDR with any particular orientation to provide the greatest light or is that inconsequential since it is diffused?

Thanks in advance, Tom

You'll want to point the LED at the face of the LDR, put them right up against each other, and the results would be better if you wrap some black heat shrink around them to isolate them. Here's a relevant thread, seems a good idea to use a piece of a drinking straw or similar before the heat shrink to keep it from getting in the way of light transmission:

http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=103184.15
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Fine Mechanics on July 29, 2016, 02:48:28 PM
Hi Taylor. I'm still somewhat stuck with my build. When engaged the unit passes signal but the filter is fixed despite the fact that the LED flashes in line with the attack and decay settings.. Otherwise, all controls seem to be working as expected.

Any ideas why the filter sweep wouldn't be working despite the fact that the LED shows that there's clearly an envelope opening and closing?

Many thanks as always for your assistance.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 29, 2016, 07:42:22 PM
I would guess the problem lies with your optocouplers, since you say the envelope generator and audio sections are both working - it must be the part connecting them that's giving you trouble.

Double-check the datasheet for the optocoupler you used to make sure you've got the LED part on top, resistor part on the bottom, and that the positive LED lead is in the right (as in not left) pad.  All directions are with the labeled side of the board facing you, text the correct way up.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Fine Mechanics on July 30, 2016, 12:11:25 PM
Taylor, thanks so much for the help. My optocouplers were wired incorrectly. The unit now works and sounds great. After rewiring the optos the LED now seems to have stopped working, so further troubleshooting to be done, but great to finally be 99% of the way there on this one at last!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Carl James on November 27, 2016, 06:54:41 PM
  This is my first time in a forum. So please forgive me for being a noob. I love my meat sphere! I just ordered a few more pcbs. But I just can't get the effects loop to work. It just goes silent with the blend clockwise. What did I wire wrong?
   Oh great. I can't figure out how to even upload an image. This is nothing like texting?
    I'm using stereo cliff jacks. They fit very nicely. But I can't figure out what I'm doing wrong? Could someone maybe help me out here? I'm sorry I'm so dumb with this forum stuff. I've just been stuck for 2 weeks and don't know what else to do.
   Thanks guys.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on November 27, 2016, 07:22:31 PM
This particular forum doesn't allow uploading images directly, so I use imgur.com. At the top of that page, click the "new post" button and it'll give you options for uploading. Once the image is uploaded, mouse over the image and click on the little down arrow, then "get share links" and copy the "bbcode" one. You can paste that into this forum.

The return jack needs to be a switching type, like this one:

http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/1-4-in-mono-nys2152/

It can be mono or stereo, doesn't matter. You'll be connecting the Send jack to the tip-switch of the jack (in the jack above, that's the terminal on the left of the image, which is connected to the tip terminal when no plug is inserted into the jack). It sounds like you may have used a non-switched stereo jack and wired that to the ring terminal instead. So if you have a switched jack, you may just need to swap that wire over. If that doesn't fix it, once you can upload a photo of your build we might be able to spot what's up.
Title: Carl James
Post by: Carl James on November 27, 2016, 08:01:53 PM
  I just fixed it! Suddenly I saw the light.
      I had the send going to the output and the return going to the switch. It should have been the other way around.
 It's spectacular with a ce-2 in the loop! I can't wait to make my next 2!
Title: Carl James
Post by: Carl James on November 27, 2016, 08:24:40 PM
(http://imgur.com/eEmQowd)

   For anyone having problems with wiring the effects loop with cliff jacks. This is how it's done.
Title: Re: Carl James
Post by: Cozybuilder on November 27, 2016, 08:41:13 PM
(http://imgur.com/eEmQowd.jpg)

   For anyone having problems with wiring the effects loop with cliff jacks. This is how it's done.

You need the .jpg on the image address and a scaling factor to keep it to a reasonable size.
Title: Enclosure
Post by: Carl James on February 23, 2017, 09:11:48 AM
   For folks looking for a huge enclosure like the original Meatball, there is now a seller on ebay that is selling them. He sells one undrilled and another drilled to fit the layout of the meatsphere. Both are priced at $25 and built with very heavy guage steel.
    I sent him the cad file and now he's making them! Exciting!
     He even has the flat top to mount the Jacks on top! I can't wait for mine to come in!
Title: Re: Enclosure
Post by: tremelo68 on February 23, 2017, 09:49:33 AM
   For folks looking for a huge enclosure like the original Meatball, there is now a seller on ebay that is selling them. He sells one undrilled and another drilled to fit the layout of the meatsphere. Both are priced at $25 and built with very heavy guage steel.
    I sent him the cad file and now he's making them! Exciting!
     He even has the flat top to mount the Jacks on top! I can't wait for mine to come in!

A link would be great and save people time trying to find the enclosures. Thanks!
Title: sneakers
Post by: Carl James on February 23, 2017, 12:53:45 PM
Here's the link to the predrilled enclosure. I just ordered mine. For $25,  it's a steal!
http://www.ebay.com/itm/222355103574
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: tremelo68 on February 23, 2017, 01:04:22 PM
Looks awesome. Am psyched to see how your build fits.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: vigilante397 on February 23, 2017, 01:27:54 PM
Nooooo!!!! I already ordered the enclosure for mine and I don't really have anything else to put in that box, but I LOVE the Lovetone style :-\
Title: sneakers
Post by: Carl James on February 26, 2017, 01:18:38 PM
(http://i.imgur.com/oRMlmOf.jpg2nnn)

   New build from the enclosure on ebay. The row of pots were about 9mm too close to the switches. But I just bent the legs on the pots straight, and then bent them again as Close to the know as I could. It gave me more leg room and worked out better after all!
    Now, to make a decal and hammer paint the sides.
 I'm terribly sorry for the oversized image. But I'm really a noob when it comes to these forums. I have no clue how to scale the image.
   It would be great if someone could tell me where I'm supposed to scale it?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bluebunny on February 27, 2017, 08:10:49 AM
Put height=nnn or width=nnn inside the [IMG] tag.  Or resize it before you upload it to imgur.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Ben N on February 27, 2017, 08:50:44 AM
Big box. Bigger pic.  :o
Title: Re: sneakers
Post by: vigilante397 on February 27, 2017, 12:52:53 PM
(http://i.imgur.com/oRMlmOf.jpg2nnn)
Title: sneakers
Post by: Carl James on February 27, 2017, 01:29:48 PM
(http://i.imgur.com/9GsfZAJ.jpg)

    The row of pots are a little too close to the switches. But honestly, I like it better this way. Now the legs of the pots stick fully through the holes, because bending them give them more height.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: skarkowtsky on May 20, 2017, 03:05:11 PM
Hi everyone,

I'm new to the boards. I joined after discovering musicpcb.com and the Meat Sphere. I've read this thread, and am excited to build my own! I'm a graphic designer by profession, so I enjoyed identically recreating the Lovetone Meatball pedal interface this morning. I used an overhead photo of the original pedal as an overlay, tracked down the typeface and got to work creating the vector art.

My template is designed for the pedal enclosure sold on eBay that closely resembles the original (I'm not associated with the seller). I plan to have the template cut into a vinyl to use as a spray stencil directly onto the pedal surface.

Below is a jpg preview. Awaiting my pedal enclosure so I confirm the specs before I can share. I'd be honored to share the actual PDF artwork with everyone here if they wish to do the same to theirs.

Cheers!
John

(http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m168/jl122/meatball_zps7qgt2myf.png) (http://s104.photobucket.com/user/jl122/media/meatball_zps7qgt2myf.png.html)



Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: vigilante397 on May 21, 2017, 07:24:03 PM
Welcome to the forum :) I bought my board months ago and still haven't put it together :P But I love the look of your graphics and would definitely take you up on the pdf :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mforester on May 26, 2017, 06:24:34 PM
Thank you skarkowtsky for the work on the graphics I would love to have a copy too. One note, I think most are using "9v tip - ve" these days, my late version Lovetone Meatball has it.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mforester on June 21, 2017, 01:58:31 PM
I'm finally getting around to building my Meatsphere. I need to order 1/4 jacks, do I just get switched stereo jacks or some other mix of switched/standard and stereo/mono?

(https://s21.postimg.org/eglf9pc2r/IMG_6184.png) (https://postimg.org/image/eglf9pc2r/)

(https://s7.postimg.org/z8dqccuyv/IMG_6185.png) (https://postimg.org/image/z8dqccuyv/)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mforester on June 24, 2017, 02:20:49 PM
Someone helped me out, answer was Mono Unswitched for everything except the return which needs a Mono Switched jack.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: skarkowtsky on June 26, 2017, 04:44:14 PM
I'm glad some of you guys like the art work. I don't have the eBay enclosure, so I can't set up the file to the proper dimensions. However, anyone who does own it and wants to share the dimensions, I can set up the file and share the PDF here with everyone.

NOTE: This is designed for the eBay enclosure, which closely resembles the OEM housing from what I understand.

Cheers,
John

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mforester on June 27, 2017, 03:45:10 PM
The posted dimensions on the eBay listing are 6 1/8 X 5 3/4 X 2 9/16. I'm waiting for him to get in the pre-drilled enclosures and then I'll have one and can verify the dimensions unless someone else gets to it before me.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: vigilante397 on June 28, 2017, 11:44:15 AM
Definitely let us know when they're back in stock. I was planning to pick one up but I hesitated too long and missed it  :-\
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mooner on July 11, 2017, 03:47:05 PM
I bought the PCB and I'm about to start building. Do I need to do anything with all the little holes on the board that seem to lead to nowhere?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 11, 2017, 04:18:37 PM
Nope, they're called "vias" and they connect copper traces on one side of the board to the other side. You can ignore them.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Via_(electronics)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mforester on July 17, 2017, 05:29:10 PM
They're back in stock.

Pedal enclosure box- Lovetone style- Meatball  http://r.ebay.com/CX8NjV
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: vigilante397 on July 17, 2017, 06:28:06 PM
They're back in stock.

Thank you sir, you have done me a great service. Just ordered one  8)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mforester on July 24, 2017, 05:32:04 PM
I should have mine by the end of this week and will post pictures and measurements unless someone beats me to it.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: vigilante397 on July 25, 2017, 12:37:29 PM
Mine actually showed up a few days ago, but I still have no idea when I'll get around to building it ::)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mforester on July 28, 2017, 06:28:28 PM
Mine came in today. Measurements are:

Width = 5 9/16"
Back = 2 7/16"
Top = 1 3/8"
Front = 4 3/4"


(https://s12.postimg.org/epjjuk009/IMG_7518.jpg) (https://postimg.org/image/epjjuk009/)

(https://s2.postimg.org/yajs0joit/IMG_7519.jpg) (https://postimg.org/image/yajs0joit/)

(https://s18.postimg.org/ntp6i4yit/IMG_7521.jpg) (https://postimg.org/image/ntp6i4yit/)

(https://s17.postimg.org/uq6818akr/IMG_7523.jpg) (https://postimg.org/image/uq6818akr/)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mforester on July 31, 2017, 12:48:43 PM
I'm glad some of you guys like the art work. I don't have the eBay enclosure, so I can't set up the file to the proper dimensions. However, anyone who does own it and wants to share the dimensions, I can set up the file and share the PDF here with everyone.

NOTE: This is designed for the eBay enclosure, which closely resembles the OEM housing from what I understand.

Cheers,
John

I've added the dimensions you need, let me know if you need anything more. Would you consider adding to your graphic file an option for the expression 1 and 2 jacks? While there isn't space on top for them it would be easy to install them on the back right side of the lid?

Thank you,

Michael
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on January 03, 2018, 12:34:32 PM
Did the MusicPCB shop go down permanently?  It's been like a month since it was supposed to be back up.. I emailed the contact, but no reply.   I hope not!  I never got a Meat Sphere board!   :icon_eek:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on January 03, 2018, 10:03:07 PM
I'm still around - this month I moved from Louisiana to Oregon, and am just now getting internet service set up here. PCBs will be in stock and ready to ship in the next couple of days.  :)

edit: actually it was just a couple minutes. The site is updated and everything's in stock except the Echo Base, Christine and Tiny Giant kit (TG PCBs are available).
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on January 03, 2018, 10:43:20 PM
Great!! I'm up in washington state, neighbor.  8)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on January 04, 2018, 01:49:36 PM
Well I ordered Taylor's board, and one of those Ebay enclosures as seen above.   I hope it fits, if not, I'll fly the pots and rotary switches.   Thanks again for the opportunity Taylor, I'm loving my Gristleizer and I'm looking forward to this build :D
-Brett
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bloke_zero on February 05, 2018, 06:31:49 AM
Hi all!

I built this board up and everything works except the envelope doesn't effect the filter at all - the intensity knob doesn't seem to affect filter frequency in relation to the input so the filter frequency is always static unless I change the range switch.

The weird thing is that the LED does work and lights up as I would expect.

I've swapped out the vactrols and checked the soldering - it looks ok!

Could I have blown one of the chips?  Which one controls the envelope?  I looked at the schematic but couldn't figure out the path after the vactrols.

Any help gratefully received!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: PMowdes on February 05, 2018, 11:59:37 AM
Hi all!

I built this board up and everything works except the envelope doesn't effect the filter at all - the intensity knob doesn't seem to affect filter frequency in relation to the input so the filter frequency is always static unless I change the range switch.

The weird thing is that the LED does work and lights up as I would expect.

I've swapped out the vactrols and checked the soldering - it looks ok!

Could I have blown one of the chips?  Which one controls the envelope?  I looked at the schematic but couldn't figure out the path after the vactrols.

Any help gratefully received!
Double check the lm1458, make sure you get one from a reputable supplier, that was the big one for me.
the other thing to check is that you have wired the Send / return properly. 

Sent from my F5321 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on February 05, 2018, 09:02:30 PM
Just fyi the hole spacing on the EBay boxes from forester is a little too narrow for the rotaries on the board. I drilled them out a few sizes with a step bit and they fit now, I'll just need a "Vanity" washer  (chrome from ACE) to complete the look. The box is incredibly good quality.  I had to goose a couple more of the holes to fit my Tayda pots and upsides the indicator hole to fit a 3mm. 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bloke_zero on February 06, 2018, 06:09:01 AM

Double check the lm1458, make sure you get one from a reputable supplier, that was the big one for me.
the other thing to check is that you have wired the Send / return properly. 


Thanks!  I ordered another LM1458 and we'll see if that helps - thing is the original is from a reputable dealer and the LED functions as I expect and that, like the optos, comes after the lm1458 - maybe the diode is another place to look.

The suggestion regarding send/return is good - I looked there first because that would be the obvious thing (filter works but no envelope) but I think it is right - there is continuity between the send and return.

I'll investigate further!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: PMowdes on February 06, 2018, 06:23:33 AM

Double check the lm1458, make sure you get one from a reputable supplier, that was the big one for me.
the other thing to check is that you have wired the Send / return properly. 


Thanks!  I ordered another LM1458 and we'll see if that helps - thing is the original is from a reputable dealer and the LED functions as I expect and that, like the optos, comes after the lm1458 - maybe the diode is another place to look.

The suggestion regarding send/return is good - I looked there first because that would be the obvious thing (filter works but no envelope) but I think it is right - there is continuity between the send and return.

I'll investigate further!
Look at it as two separate circuits, if the lm1458 is working then the envelope led should work.

Also remember in certain settings nothing works, make sure you attack is set less than decay, and that the envelope is switched on with the bandwidth switch (one position off the switch turns the envelope off completely).  Set blend, intensity, sensitivity and colour nice and high, put the mode into high pass and the envelope in "up"

Sent from my F5321 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: chicago_mike on February 16, 2018, 03:34:09 PM
My box came in from eBay and this thing is heavy! Super cool! I'll have to get a couple more perhaps.

If you modify the Precision Rectifier circuit a little, you CAN use a 4558. Take a look at the mutron rectifier vs. the meatball one.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on February 22, 2018, 01:20:23 PM
Got it going, works pretty good, as stated in the previous 27 pages of information there are some settings where it just doesn't do anything.   I tried a bunch of Small Bear vactrols, and they all worked, but it didn't sound that great.  I had a couple 5537's (2M dark) with red 5mm diffused I rolled for other projects and threw those in there, they sounded way better.  After reading the rest of this I'm going to roll some 5528's (1M dark) with 5mm Green diffused when I get home and try those as well.   I am using a LM1458 from Small Bear and it works great, but I am going to try the 5532 since reports indicate it may even be better.   I haven't done the colour mod, but that's happening, and I'm also going to do the Moog Mod.

EDIT:  I wasn't indicating that the Small Bear products are to blame, Steve's stuff is top notch. I think the circuit just sounds better with the response from the rollies.   

A ways back a Dude mentions that you can run a lead from the intensity pot to the middle lug on the Time pot on some delays and get some envelope controlled delay pitch divebombs, so I may wire up a lead and run that out to a 1/8 jack on the back or something for future implementation. 

Did anyone try LM358's in this yet? I read a few pages back that it may be a suitable replacement due to voltage swing characteristics etc. 

I used the EBay enclosure, from the same seller who sells many great amp chassis, I have the Vibrochamp version.  It's high quality AF though I did have to goose every hole to fit my stuff.  The 4 selector holes I had to go way bigger, and then got some Chrome Vanity washers to hide the oversized holes.   I'll post a pic as soon as I finish the paint job.  I may add an expression jack to the back for control of the intensity pot as mentioned a few times as well.   

It's a bananas circuit for sure, the sweep down with the right settings sounds like some kind of seismic charge going off .. lots of house rattling goodness, maybe the Moog mod will tame this a hair, though it's pretty cool if your cab can handle the sub frequencies.   Mine bumps like Dr. Dre's Impala ;)

-Brett
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on February 22, 2018, 08:34:35 PM
5528's and green diffused 5mm, NE5532, are definitely staying in my build.  It really sprang to life with those guys.  All the knobs are way more responsive.  I have yet to do the other two mods so that's all for now. 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 1878 on April 15, 2018, 07:43:30 AM
Hello Everyone.

Need a bit of help here if possible. I plugged in my Meat Sphere a couple of days ago but it was as dead as disco. No sound of any sort, no LED lighting up, nothing. I opened it up and the two 6n8 caps look a little blown.

I'll swap them out soon, but would there be any reason why these two caps have blown other than the fact that they may have been a defective batch etc?

Thanks in advance...

(https://s7.postimg.cc/s86bwp1wn/IMG_20180414_081027.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/image/s86bwp1wn/)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: duck_arse on April 15, 2018, 10:40:55 AM
Quote
.... the two 6n8 caps look a little blown.

look blown how? they [I'm assuming] look to me like stacked-film types with heatshrink covers. I'm not sure heatshrinking that type cap is a good idea, either. if only those cpas "were blown", the other ranges should still werk, surely.

voltages. you know the drill.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: 1878 on April 15, 2018, 01:25:31 PM
Blown as in, they didn't look like that when they went in there.

Not a problem. I'll get some voltages & check them against what peeps have posted here.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on April 17, 2018, 09:43:44 AM
Hello Everyone.

Need a bit of help here if possible. I plugged in my Meat Sphere a couple of days ago but it was as dead as disco. No sound of any sort, no LED lighting up, nothing. I opened it up and the two 6n8 caps look a little blown.

I'll swap them out soon, but would there be any reason why these two caps have blown other than the fact that they may have been a defective batch etc?

Thanks in advance...

(https://s7.postimg.cc/s86bwp1wn/IMG_20180414_081027.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/image/s86bwp1wn/)

Could be wrong but, I believe those caps only adjust the envelope. Even if they were blown I do not see how it would cause the whole pedal to be dead. I would start looking at power and grounds. Are you sure the polarity of your PS matches with the wiring of the pedal? Blown protection diodes??
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: theehman on May 28, 2018, 11:06:10 AM
After having this PCB sitting around for a few years I finally got round to finishing it up this weekend.  I've got it working OK, but only in one position of the up/down switch.  I assume UP is working as the LED turns on with the envelope.  In the DOWN position the LED turns on and I can see it go out with the envelope, but there's no signal.  Anyone else run across this problem or have recommendations for a fix?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on May 28, 2018, 12:37:51 PM
Knob position is very important in this build and it definitely has spots where it makes no noise.   So you may want to twiddle there. 

This is a verified board as well, other than a few component changes mine worked first try.  That is to say check your build closely.  I always take a close picture of the board  before I populate it so if I have to go back and look closely it's a lot easier.

Let us know :) 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: theehman on May 28, 2018, 02:19:43 PM
While I have no doubts about the PCB quality, I have been over the PCB and corrected a few components (bought populated from another member).  I removed the Vactrols and used 2 green diffused LEDs and jumpered the photocell pads with wires.  Still no signal when in DOWN position.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on May 28, 2018, 05:16:07 PM
Are you certain you used the right type/compatible rotaries?  What opamp did you use?  Mine didn't work super great with a few I tried, but the NE5532 definitely worked awesome.  I used 5528 LDR from eBay. 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: theehman on May 28, 2018, 05:33:29 PM
Are you certain you used the right type/compatible rotaries?  What opamp did you use?  Mine didn't work super great with a few I tried, but the NE5532 definitely worked awesome.  I used 5528 LDR from eBay.

They look like the correct ones.  They're Alpha and were already installed.  I'm using an MC1458.  I tried a JRC1458 first but I haven't seen any difference.  It had Vactrol VTL5C3 in it when I got it.  I've temporarily removed them and put green LEDs in so I can see the envelope action.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on May 28, 2018, 05:41:41 PM
I don't think it'll work at all with the LDR slot jumpered.   You may want to source the 5528s before any further troubleshooting.  I could be wrong,  but LDRs never go to zero ohms. 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on May 28, 2018, 06:06:53 PM
The original Meatball used 2M dark LDRs and diffused Green LEDs.

You definitely need the LDRs in place for the circuit to work properly.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: vigilante397 on May 29, 2018, 10:01:09 AM
My plan is to read everyone else's posts and see all the issues get sorted out before I stuff my board. Had it sitting around for about a year now ::)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: theehman on May 29, 2018, 04:32:26 PM
Are these the correct photocells?

https://www.ebay.com/itm/10x-Photo-Light-Sensitive-Resistor-Photoresistor-photocell-cell-5mm-GL5528-DIY/251320127568?hash=item3a83d8d050:g:O0wAAMXQiFxSC2ou (https://www.ebay.com/itm/10x-Photo-Light-Sensitive-Resistor-Photoresistor-photocell-cell-5mm-GL5528-DIY/251320127568?hash=item3a83d8d050:g:O0wAAMXQiFxSC2ou)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on May 29, 2018, 04:47:40 PM
Are these the correct photocells?

https://www.ebay.com/itm/10x-Photo-Light-Sensitive-Resistor-Photoresistor-photocell-cell-5mm-GL5528-DIY/251320127568?hash=item3a83d8d050:g:O0wAAMXQiFxSC2ou (https://www.ebay.com/itm/10x-Photo-Light-Sensitive-Resistor-Photoresistor-photocell-cell-5mm-GL5528-DIY/251320127568?hash=item3a83d8d050:g:O0wAAMXQiFxSC2ou)

You could try them however, they only have a 1M dark resistance. The original used 2M dark. You will probably lose quite a bit of the sweep.

I would go with these:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/5-PCs-Photoresistor-GL5537-2-LDR-Photo-Resistors-Light-Dependent-Resistor/161090106076?hash=item2581b7f2dc:g:958AAOSw2GlXG~~~:sc:USPSFirstClass!20636!US!-1 (http://www.ebay.com/itm/5-PCs-Photoresistor-GL5537-2-LDR-Photo-Resistors-Light-Dependent-Resistor/161090106076?hash=item2581b7f2dc:g:958AAOSw2GlXG~~~:sc:USPSFirstClass!20636!US!-1)

See if they can do combined shipping for 10 pieces
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on May 29, 2018, 11:04:25 PM
I bought 2 sets that came with 5508 5516 5528 5537 5539 five if each. They have worked in everything I've tried. 

I read that the 1M worked great elsewhere in this thread but now I want to try the 2M ..  It's easy enough to make another pair with heatshrink.   

I may try it tomorrow after work and report back.   :icon_mrgreen:

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: theehman on June 04, 2018, 06:54:28 AM
Just wanted to thank everyone for their patience and support with me while I was troubleshooting my build.  I ended up using the green LEDs and the GL5537 suggested by Govmnt_Lacky and they sound great!
 As to what my problem was, let's just say I should not have used one of the external led pads as a grounding point.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on June 04, 2018, 09:30:26 PM
Just wanted to thank everyone for their patience and support with me while I was troubleshooting my build.  I ended up using the green LEDs and the GL5537 suggested by Govmnt_Lacky and they sound great!
 As to what my problem was, let's just say I should not have used one of the external led pads as a grounding point.

Good to hear Ron. Funny, after you posted I remembered a similar problem I had with a Meatball build. Turned out the red LED was grounding to edge of a Tayda bezel (Yes... their plastic silver bezels do conduct) and I was seeing the same problem.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: theehman on June 05, 2018, 08:09:48 PM
And here's my completed pedal.  I'll probably change the label to say Meat Sphere instead.

(https://s15.postimg.cc/p210bcl9z/IMG_20180605_180204512_LL.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/image/p210bcl9z/)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bloke_zero on September 14, 2018, 04:04:40 PM
I didn't think home rolled vactrols would make that much difference, but diffused green and 2m really made it feel good, better range and smoother response. And super easy to make with heat shrink. Tempted to try 1m to tame the peaks.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: vigilante397 on September 14, 2018, 04:24:54 PM
Every time this thread pops up in my list I'm reminded of my half-populated board sitting in my now overflowing "not built yet" box of PCBs :-\ I even snagged one of the pre-drilled slanted enclosures, that is also just sitting in my garage gathering dust. One of these days for sure....
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: BetterOffShred on September 14, 2018, 04:25:57 PM
I got diffused green and 1M in mine and I love it.  Also used NE5532 for the opamps, not sure if you saw that recommendation a ways back.  Definitely try it before you complete the boxing.   :icon_mrgreen:

Every time this thread pops up in my list I'm reminded of my half-populated board sitting in my now overflowing "not built yet" box of PCBs :-\ I even snagged one of the pre-drilled slanted enclosures, that is also just sitting in my garage gathering dust. One of these days for sure....

Yeah I had to drill out the rotary holes a little bigger, it was not wide enough
(https://s8.postimg.cc/fmv4c4u35/180854_crop_632x706.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/image/fmv4c4u35/)
Turned out ok.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bloke_zero on September 16, 2018, 08:19:07 AM
I bought the kit from musikding and the vactrols that came with it didn't work at all. I'll try  1m tonight.

I'm thinking the moog mod is probably essential as there are huge spikes as the envelope closes. Overall though I like the sound better than the mutron 3 clone I built, feels like the filter is less nasal and the expressive possibilities are greater (on the bass).
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on September 16, 2018, 03:15:17 PM
Just for clarity...

Original Meatballs used an LM1458 for the dual op amp and used diffused Green LEDs and 2M Dark LDRs
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bloke_zero on October 09, 2018, 09:45:49 AM
Thanks Govmnt_Lacky - I'll try that - so far I'm really liking the diffused Green LEDs and 2M Dark LDRs, and swapping out the opamp seems fun.

I just did the 'moog mod' which I like a lot (no more massive hump at the bottom end as the envelop sweeps down) but I'm getting a weird glitch.  When I switch the switch I get a sound like flicking a glass with your finger and some times the audio doesn't reach the output but flipping the switch a couple of times or plugging and unplugging the cord from my bass brings it back - the soldering on the switch looks ok - I was worried I'd lifted the pad when I unsoldered the 10k resistor but it seems to work ok  -any ideas?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: vigilante397 on December 29, 2018, 02:46:03 AM
Well, two years or so after buying the PCB I finally got around to finishing the stuffing and am moving to the debugging bit.

When I first stuffed it I didn't have matching vactrols, so I just grabbed whatever I had in the bins, which was one XVIVE something or other and one Macron VTL5C* workalike (don't remember what model), both from Smallbear I think. It sounded okay-ish. Swapped the op-amp to an LM1458, sounded pretty good. Found a pair of Macron VTL5C3's on the bench so I swapped them in tonight, and the filter is dead. There's one position (LP filter I think?) that gets clean signal through, but I have tried every setting and most give no sound, the others give clean sound with no filter.

Should I just roll my own vactrols? I don't keep LDRs on hand because I've always been terrified of rolling my own, but it sounds like the way to go on this build. Has anyone else tried it with Macron VTL5C3 workalikes from smallbear?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Kevin Mitchell on December 31, 2018, 04:33:36 PM
I've tried NOS VTLs for this circuit on breadboard.

The biggest issue I've had with it (on a couple of builds) was lack of response with the opamp in the envelope section. I'm not sure why but I've had to try a half dozen different ones before it sounded right to me.

Totally roll your vactrols. I've done that with two builds and it sounded just as well as any other demos I've heard (green diffused LED)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Alex.H on January 29, 2019, 05:36:43 PM
I just ordered the kit from musikding but sadly they had no fitting knobs in their shop. I wanted some knob as close to the original as possible, so I searched a lot of shops (musikding, reichelt, conrad, mouser, mammothelectronics, smallbear, amazon usw.) but found only at the mouser store a fitting knob. Called PKAP70B1/4 from TE Connectivity (Alcoswitch). But that thing costs 7,16 EUR. A piece! And you need six!

So I looked further and found a perfect knob on ebay: https://www.ebay.de/itm/Potiknopf-Kunststoff-Bakelit-17-20mm-fur-6mm-Achse-Drehknopf-Reglerknopf-4-Stuck/302214564047?hash=item465d6448cf (https://www.ebay.de/itm/Potiknopf-Kunststoff-Bakelit-17-20mm-fur-6mm-Achse-Drehknopf-Reglerknopf-4-Stuck/302214564047?hash=item465d6448cf)

I'm not affilitated with that shop by any means, but it took me ages to find those knobs and maybe some of you can profit by my find.
(https://i.postimg.cc/9Dxhtr94/Lovetone-Knoepfe-01.png) (https://postimg.cc/9Dxhtr94)
(https://i.postimg.cc/fSj43LZR/Knopf-ebay.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/fSj43LZR)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: duck_arse on January 30, 2019, 08:18:24 AM
we have had very similar and popular knobs here for many a time - this inst 2.85 puny AU$ each:

https://www.jaycar.com.au/20mm-knob-black-plastic-aluminium-insert/p/HK7786
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Alex.H on January 31, 2019, 12:48:04 PM
we have had very similar and popular knobs here for many a time - this inst 2.85 puny AU$ each:

https://www.jaycar.com.au/20mm-knob-black-plastic-aluminium-insert/p/HK7786
That is real great for all australian folks.

I posted my find in the musikding forum and the admin told me, they already have such a knob in the shop. I just overlooked it.  :icon_redface: Stupid me! It took ages to find the replacement on ebay.

For all folks in europe I have here two more sources of that knob:
https://www.musikding.de/Doppelnasenknopf-18mm (https://www.musikding.de/Doppelnasenknopf-18mm)
https://www.uk-electronic.de/onlineshop/product_info.php?products_id=3301 (https://www.uk-electronic.de/onlineshop/product_info.php?products_id=3301)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on March 12, 2019, 06:00:30 PM
Does anyone have a good drill template for this build in a 1590XX/1790NS?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on March 13, 2019, 09:02:09 PM
I guess no one has a drill template...  :-\

Another question:

Looking at the Meatsphere pcb and comparing to the original, it looks like the LED attached to the on/off stomp is designed to operate in conjunction with the vactrol LEDs. This is the same as the original pedals however, I do not see a stand-alone on/off LED that is connected to the 9V input and provided the GND via the stomp like the original. Originals have an external Green LED attached to the vactrol circuit to show the envelope and also a Red LED to indicate the pedal is on or off.

In other words, the Meatsphere LED connected to the stomp will only light up when the envelope is actuated. So, you will only see it light up when you play. Otherwise, it will be off all the time. Where is the connection for the Red LED?

Finally, why connect the LED to the stomp at all? If you solder it onto the pcb where it says, the LED should light up with the envelope and go off when it is not actuated (like the original units)

Is this correct?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on March 13, 2019, 10:00:45 PM
If you want to have two LEDs, one showing the envelope and one showing bypass status, I would solder your envelope LED straight to the board, and wire up your status LED in the normal true bypass way with its own resistor.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mikeford on June 01, 2019, 02:19:56 PM
Diffused LEDs and Tayda LDRs are good. Make sure the LDRs can get to 2M dark.

Make sure your 1458 IC is known good. Don't use Tayda or eBay clones. Go with a reputable seller for these. Bad or out-of-spec 1458s will cause the pedal to not function properly.


Would that be the  small bear sku#8104?    27 - 60K is the  min to max Light resistance and it states that     2 Meg MINIMUM dark resistance. THANKS
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on July 08, 2019, 09:07:29 PM
For those who have been asking, the Meat Sphere board is back in stock.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mikeford on July 14, 2019, 12:20:43 PM
For those who have been asking, the Meat Sphere board is back in stock.
[/quote]

 it's sounding pretty killer!

just got mine going. Had to roll my own vactrols with the diffused green leds.

(https://i.postimg.cc/m1S43h75/015.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/m1S43h75)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on July 14, 2019, 01:44:05 PM
I notice wires coming off all the pots. Are you intending on experimenting with expression pedals or something? I haven't but think about it. Would like to be able to use it like a wah. Maybe detector off, direction down, and a pedal in series with the intensity...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: mikeford on July 14, 2019, 09:54:04 PM
I notice wires coming off all the pots. Are you intending on experimenting with expression pedals or something? I haven't but think about it. Would like to be able to use it like a wah. Maybe detector off, direction down, and a pedal in series with the intensity...

 No , I just stuck this one up for the Hades of it,so to speak. You could mod this for an expression/wah setup. The original Lovetones had all sortsa killer inputs/outputs/loops. I wouldn't be the one to atte,pt it on this board,as I am pushing my luck. I would check out the Meaty Balls pcb/build by DeadEnd Fx. https://www.deadendfx.com/product/meaty-ball (https://www.deadendfx.com/product/meaty-ball) Deano has all the bells n whistles on his version. (might take a stab at that version a bit later,tho.) Best of luck.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: ficelles on February 17, 2020, 04:23:02 PM
Here is my Meatsphere build, showing both my original horrible wiring and my just-completed rewire. I had a Lovetone Meatball a few years back and this is easily as good, glad I dived in and built it :)

(https://i.postimg.cc/G9Pzx3n0/429-A62-BB-D79-C-4227-AB89-A44877248-B9-B.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/G9Pzx3n0)

(https://i.postimg.cc/QHXm4LjF/3-D3-EA77-C-0423-472-F-B4-C5-355729-EE93-EC.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/QHXm4LjF)

(https://i.postimg.cc/309xtQ9j/D74-DA2-EC-4-A6-F-4831-9115-EB78-B5-CD68-CC.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/309xtQ9j)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: giova.b on March 13, 2020, 05:17:48 AM
Hello there
I'm planning to build this pedal so I'm collecting all possible info before start.

Can someone confirm, all three filter outs, LP, BP and HP, can benefit an inverting buffer?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on May 22, 2020, 09:56:53 PM
This is reposting to avoid hijacking the new thread by "zoot" (Meatsphere almost there) with my own ramblings.

In that thread AnotherJim explained why I have had better luck with an LM358 than the 1458: the 358 works better closer to 0v and this is converting audio to DC to drive the LEDs. With the 1458 there is a 2v "dead spot" before the opamp starts rectifying. And the LED won't light below some value, my meter shows a fv of 1.7 volts. I breadboarded the detector and tried adjusting the bias, and sure enough, at around 2.4 volts (the LED has two resistors plus a pot, 430ohms plus the "intensity" pot) the circuit becomes more sensitive. It lights up from gentle play with a passive guitar. It can be biased to stay just slightly on, and the intensity pot used to pad it wherever you want it. So the starting point of the sweep doesn't have to always be "total darkness."

My previous builds I find that passive guitar barely drives it, I need Sensitivity all the way up, Intensity all the way up, attack in the first eighth of travel. I usually use guitars, (acoustic and electric) with preamps so I get by.

So I thought to add a simple bias trimmer inside and am wondering about the best way. The original circuit has a 22k to ground on the non-inverting pin. I am thinking 500k trimmer between 9v and ground, maybe a 47uf cap across this. 22k (1m?) from wiper to non-inverting input. Am I overdoing it? Could I damage the opamp monkeying around with the trimmer, setting it all the way up?
Should I nix the trimmer and just use two resistors (and a cap?) to pick a bias point that lets me use intensity to "dial it down"?

I am also thinking about a neat implementation on my (4) existing meatsphere builds. Would be nice not to take the things apart, all those pots and switches, maybe just clip the 22k in half and use its ends to tack a little "sub-assembly" in place.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: anotherjim on May 24, 2020, 05:16:42 AM
The 22k to the pin3 of the "1458/358" can be kept, but connect the other end to a pot instead of ground. The pot value could be almost anything, but any lower than 10k is only wasting current from the 9v supply. It doesn't need a smoothing cap there, the 10uF envelope cap further on will clean any noise out. You won't destroy the chip if the pot voltage gets set too high and it's unlikely you will leave it like that.
If you raise the pin3 voltage, it can remove most of the advantage of choosing the 358, but it can still be worthwhile as it can produce about 0.5v more positive swing than a 1458. Even more could be got by using a CMOS amp like a TLC2262 as they can work closer to both the 9v and 0v rails.
A little more swing from the rectifier can be had if those 1N4148's were replaced by Schottky diodes (or Germanium!) such as BAT4x series. The opamp pin3 has to go higher by the diodes forward voltage before it can raise the voltage on the envelope cap.

The attack/decay controls are a compromise for simplicity. You cannot expect them to work as well as a synth envelope. If Attack pot is max and Decay to min, they are making a voltage divider set low and the envelope voltage will struggle to swing up by much. Similarly, at the opposite extremes, the envelope voltage sits close to the bias and won't shut off the LEDs fast enough. Choosing the pot and fixed resistor values is actually a bit of a nightmare and the original designer probably lost some hair over it.

The final piece is the resistance in series with the Vactrol LEDs. If you don't have the same as the EHX original, those 100R series resistors could be far too small. With Intensity at minimum and if the opamp gave full swing, a modern LED will destroy Alderaan.

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on May 25, 2020, 01:05:59 AM
Thanks, this is clarifying the mystery meat.

I was also thinking of lower fv diodes, schotky or Ge.

I have been fooling around with a bias pot (one end to 9v, one end ground, wiper to the 22k) on one of my 358 builds. I think it only needs a little bit to get it close to the trigger point, but not so much that it is always on... It does make it respond differently, a guitar with single coils and no boost will drive it to a satisfying range of sounds. But it seems like it has a harder time "closing" and any background ringing keeps the filter open.

The original Meatball, I believe, did not use vactrols but green LEDs stuck to LDRs. I tried the suggested vactrols in the beginning.... and only had success when I "rolled my own."
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: anotherjim on May 25, 2020, 03:58:17 AM
We know the guitar is brighter/louder during pick attack - so if a smaller coupling cap was used into the rectifier, it will only pump up when picked and will ignore the sustain since that contains less treble and the envelope cap can have longer to discharge before the next pick.

 
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on May 25, 2020, 11:28:38 AM
It has a choice of caps into the rectifier, I never really played with that.

The Meatball has some "truth in advertising" in that it is labeled "triggered filter'; and not "envelope filter."

About the LED brightness: using the diffused green LEDs on the LDRs with the given R values gives a good range. They are a sort of article of faith among Meatball builders, and Lovetone stuff generally. The visible indicator I put in an ultra-bright and the suggested 4.7k. Normally with 9v I would use closer to 10k there.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on May 29, 2020, 03:00:57 PM
So i now have two of these with little voltage dividers to bias the rectifier. One with a LM358 and one with LM1458. (A "legitimate brand name" 1458, the generic Tayda ones didn't work for me.)

In either case bringing the pin 3 up to around 2v makes triggering with an unboosted guitar a breeze, and the LEDs stay dark when the guitar is silent. There does not seem any virtue in tweeking this to some special bias value or using a pot. I settled on pulling the end of the 22k farthest from the chip out and attaching a 200k to the empty hole and a 680k to the 9v in nearby. The three resistors' loose ends wound together.

I have not tried lower fv diodes. I am thinking that .6v is still too little to "crack" the LEDs, and that charging the cap starting at .3v won't light anything up. The opamp needs to output over 2v for the LEDs to respond.

Having just returned to reread all 30 (often heartbreaking) pages of this thread I keep thinking it could be reduced to one page:
Roll your own vactrols, LDRs dark over 2M, diffused green LEDs.
Brand name 1458 or, better, 358. Others may work.
Biasing pin 3 to above 2v makes it easier to trigger.
Moog mod good for bass. The 10k between pin 2 and 8 of the 074 (directly under the range rotary) is replaced with a switch. DPDT. Two wires from the 10k's empty place to pins 3 and 5 of the switch. a 10k between pins 3 and 6. a 100k and 470n in parallel between pins 4 and 6. You are adding a cap and parallel r in series with the 10k.
Color mod really a necessary correction. Jumper pins 2 and 3 of the color pot. And you can use A100K for the color pot, better range of resonance.
You can add a buffer and then switch "dry" side of blend knob between send and return. Necessary if you like fuzz. If this buffer had a phase invert switch you could blend LP better.
The schematic has an error in VREF, (mislabeling 9v as vref and missing the arrow at the node for 1/2v) but the board is correct.
Several components are reversed in order on PCB/schem, but they are functional equivalents.
Schem is missing a 10uf cap before send jack but board is correct.
You can up the value of the 10uf cap attached to "attack" to 47uf and you can get the longest decay sounds you hear in some demos of the original.
Switched jack on the return. Notice that end and return are in kind of odd places, send is close to output jack, return close to input. Most of use just use longer wires and cross them over so that looking at the pedal for the normal position you would count L to R output, return, send, input.
Yes you can use the board if you have soldered your rotary switches and pots to the wrong side of the board. But please think before you solder.
No there isn't a guaranteed drilling template (correct me?)
When testing you will need: sens max, attack min, decay above min, resonance mid, intensity max, blend mid to max, mode up, bandwidth middle position(which is full) range low (doesn't matter) filter doesn't matter. If you haven't biased the rectifier you will need a booster on a passive guitar.
The original foot control jacks are not very useful but the manual explains them clearly: Both are passive volume pedals (boss FV50 or 60), Pedal 1 is in series with the decay pot. Pedal 2 is in parallel with the intensity. Neither one of these turn it into a wah pedal. You will need to figure that out for yourself. (maybe a 10k pedal in series with intensity, and then set filter to "down" so the LED is normally on, and turn the trigger bandwidth to off...?)

There are a few more, but much of the thread is general troubleshooting....
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: taku0319 on June 24, 2020, 10:32:04 PM
Hi,

Yesterday I made meatsphere and it's really nice!
Well designed PCB to fit with the enclosure.
Also I used Tayda's pcb mount pots, so it was even easier to make.

However, it was necessary to set parameters properly to get a nice filter sound.


(https://i.postimg.cc/3yPwghMJ/20200625-111456.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/3yPwghMJ)

(https://i.postimg.cc/9RZQbkVP/20200625-111505.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/9RZQbkVP)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MatthewD on June 28, 2020, 05:28:55 AM
Hi,

I am still relatively new to pedal building (done a couple of easy ones), I have a couple of questions...

My kit was supplied and the BOM indicated that there are two 4.7K resistors, however I can only find one on the pcb (at the top right), am I missing something?

I am used to seeing a graphic with a u shaped cutout indicating which way the op amp socket should be mounted, but on this board there is a square copper pad on one pin location... am I right in thinking that this pad is pin 1 and pin 1 is the same end as the U shaped notch?

Regarding the Optocouplers, my kit from www.musikding.de came with two NSL7053, however I have also bought some 9203 ldr's from small bear and I am considering doing the rolling my own thing. Has anyone had experience with the NSL7053? I am trying to decide if it is worth trying them first. I have just matched my ldr's and I was lucky to get several good pairs from the 20 ldr's that I bought.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on June 28, 2020, 07:17:45 PM
Hi,

I am still relatively new to pedal building (done a couple of easy ones), I have a couple of questions...

My kit was supplied and the BOM indicated that there are two 4.7K resistors, however I can only find one on the pcb (at the top right), am I missing something?

I'm not involved in putting the kits together, but maybe the extra resistor is the LED current limiter (marked RLED next to the up/down rotary)

Quote
I am used to seeing a graphic with a u shaped cutout indicating which way the op amp socket should be mounted, but on this board there is a square copper pad on one pin location... am I right in thinking that this pad is pin 1 and pin 1 is the same end as the U shaped notch?

Yes, that's right.

I haven't experimented much with the optos so can't comment there, but maybe someone else can.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MatthewD on July 03, 2020, 08:00:26 PM
Thanks for the reply Taylor,

I can now confirm that the spare 4.7k resistor is for the led... I have since learned that this is quite common.

Foolishly I soldered all the resistors before reading all of the pages of this thread, and I have decided I would like to give the Moog mod a try because I am going to be using this on Bass.

So what I am planning on doing is...
Desoldering one leg of the resistor.
Solder wire to free end of resistor
Solder other end to common leg of an on/on switch (not a footswitch, just a SPDT switch)
Solder 470nF capacitor across the other two legs.
Solder wire to one of the two non common legs on switch
Solder other end of wire to circuit board.

I have ordered a "Polyester Film Box Type Capacitor WIMA MKS2" for the project.

Any thoughts or ideas would be appreciated, I am assuming it doesn't matter if the resistor is before or after the capacitor?
Thanks,
Matt.


Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on July 03, 2020, 08:28:06 PM
That sounds OK but:
The guy that came up with the "moog mod" (I think) ended up with a 100k in parallel with the cap.

By removing the resistor from the board you don't have a "flying" component that is likely to break when you monkey with it. It is a little neater to put both resistors and the cap on a switch. DPDT.
10k from 1-4
cap and 100k parallel 4-6
wires to 1 and 5

No, the order doesn't matter. Cap first, R first no matter here.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: rectifierfx on July 30, 2020, 03:59:35 PM
So I build myself the meat sphere. The effect works. Tried Xvive VTL5C3 and DIY Tayda diffused LED's with Futurelecs 2A LDR's (20k - 2000k). Decided to leave use the Green diffused LED's and Futurelec LDR's.

I still struggle with the OP-Amp though. Tried everything from LM1458 to LM358, nothing sounds quite right. Sound wise for me the NE5532 performed best but my envelope curve aint smooth.

Check out the soundsample below

https://clyp.it/o2a5aomw

First example is with Decay on 3, second with decay on 8

Is it the Op-Amp I have struggle with or is something else wrong in my circuit?

ALso I'm a little bit dissapointed the effect is only usable in one single position: Sens on low, Attack low, decay high, colous max, Intens max and blend max
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on July 30, 2020, 11:10:50 PM
The decay does sound ripply and strange. IME all settings work as long as attack is lower than decay. I used a larger cap and got longer decay time, I heard some demos of originals that had super long slow decay.

What happens if you lower attack and bring sensitivity up? In my builds I always had to crank the sens. all the way and intens. pretty far, and then use a booster to get the thing to trigger right. I found by using LM1458 (real brand name and not generic "work alike") and then adding something close to 2v bias to the pin3 non-inverting input the thing would trigger normally on any instrument.

I think I describe that earlier on this page.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on August 01, 2020, 11:58:14 AM
duplicate post
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MatthewD on August 25, 2020, 04:13:02 AM
Thanks for the sound clip Rectifierfx and the advice Idy.

I have finished my home brew vactrols, I also found some "cool audio" vactrols on SmallBear so I have ordered those, hopefully in a couple of months I will post some sound samples of my own to compare. Cool Audio is a Behringer owned company by the looks of it, and because the only thing Behringer does really well is make copies (aka ripoffs).. they should work great!

Now... tonight I think I ALMOST made a stupid mistake, I read earlier on the thread that the rotary switches can? be soldered in any way around. But I was about to solder one in when I looked at the board. Correct me if I am wrong but on each switch location on the pcb only a few of the traces are "live". So if I have pre set the switches with the locator tab to the correct number of positions... then I should use a continuity tester and make sure the live terminals match with the live traces/pads on the pcb. I think I may have read "can" a little too literally :)

This looks fairly straightforward except the range which seems to have 3 live pads, then one not live, then 3 more live pads. How many positions am I meant to set on the switch for this one? Looking at the schematic it looks like 3 positions(3N3, 6N8 and 15N) + a fourth position as an off position. So I just ignore the other pads.

It looked like Taylor posted an image way back on page one explaining the switch layout but it doesn't seem to be displaying for me... sorry guys.

Thanks for any advice.
Matt.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on August 25, 2020, 05:08:01 PM
It's maybe a little hard to explain why, but yeah the rotation of the rotary switches doesn't matter as long as you're using the plastic Alpha type rotaries. Each switch has three poles with four throws to each pole. So for the hp/bp/lp switch for example, whichever pole goes into the set of pads that are wired will make the connections.

up/down has 2 positions
range 4
hp/bp/lp 3
bandwidth 3
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: MatthewD on November 28, 2020, 10:03:13 PM
My Meat Sphere is all together now, but I have been problem solving an issue for a while...

When the pedal is turned on there is massive amounts of noise coming from the pedal (not white noise). I have done some audio tracing and found that the input to the TL074 sounds fine, but at any point after that including the TL074 output or the clipping diodes or at the blend there is noise.

I have tried replacing the TL074, and have checked that the components are orientated correctly but the noise persists.

Something surprising has happened with the power, when I first turned it on the led lit up, but at some point during the testing it has stopped working. Voltage tests show power is getting to the TL074 (approx. 8.7volts) and the Optocouplers, but voltage is not getting to the RLED or the led, unfortunately as a beginner and due to the complexity of the board I am having trouble figuring out exactly where the power break is.

If anyone has any suggestions I would appreciate them.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Zoot on November 29, 2020, 02:33:43 AM
Hi MatthewD,
My experience with noise and the Meat Sphere showed that so many connections (in/out/send/return) are often playing a role.
You probably want to check first if all grounds are grounded.
Have you added the send / return parts? If yes, have you used convenient switching jacks? If not, think of doing that. If you read Spanish (or can Google translate), these guys from Pisotones have a good explanation on the switch part with pictures and so on. Take a look: http://www.pisotones.com/Meatball/psst/meatball-psst.html
Led going on and off in the Meat Sphere doesn’t mean necessarily it’s not working, it’s part of how the pedal works. The bitch on this pedal is to get the triggering right, and the LED going on and off, following the trigger, is part of it. Fixing the noise first might help on this as well.
Otherwise, place a good picture of your circuit on your next post, the people here are really good in finding the mistakes we don’t see while building.
Good luck with this pedal, which is totally worth the effort.
Cheers,
Zoot
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Jbakelaar on January 03, 2021, 06:32:09 PM
Hello, I have the board in hand and the majority if not all parts on the way.  I’m excited to get into this project!
Does anyone have a drill template (the one shared in box on the first page(s) of this thread will not load for me). Also anyone feel like sharing graphics they might have used on their build?
I’ve read the thread and have gleaned a lot of helpful info. 
Building for a bass - any revelations from recent builds, I’m all ears.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 15, 2021, 07:15:06 PM
Hello, I have the board in hand and the majority if not all parts on the way.  I’m excited to get into this project!
Does anyone have a drill template (the one shared in box on the first page(s) of this thread will not load for me). Also anyone feel like sharing graphics they might have used on their build?
I’ve read the thread and have gleaned a lot of helpful info. 
Building for a bass - any revelations from recent builds, I’m all ears.
I have this file.
https://drive.google.com/file/d/10MXV805zvi-eQg-G3M1ztVRzw934D-bD/view?usp=sharing
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 23, 2021, 06:54:56 PM
I'm testing the PCB and got pretty weird results. Looks like filter part is not working in my build. In some settings I can hear the unprocessed guitar signal, in some setting there are no sound at all. I've rolled LED/LDRs and can see LEDs are reacting to the guitar signal.

What are key parts to look at the PCB to ensure that filter is working as expected?

I've noticed that I have very distorted signal on pin1 of LM1458.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 23, 2021, 09:00:36 PM
I replaced the busted pots with new ones. I originally had mounted them all in the pedal as suggested, but they didn't reach the solder pads. I thought I'd be able to bend them gently and get them to reach, and they did, but when I tightened them down with the nuts they snapped.

So now I have everything wired up, but it doesn't seem to be working in filter up mode. The envelope just doesn't trigger and the low and bandpass modes turn off the output. Works fine in Down mode though. Maybe I have a bad switch. Either way I'm going to have to spend some time debugging now...

EDIT: Is this just my build and I did something wrong, or does the intensity get reversed when it goes between up/down mode? My build seems to be working right, just wasn't expecting that odd behavior from it. Also, the blend seems somewhat useless on mine, as far left is the clean signal, moving towards middle ramps clean volume to nothing (no output), then past that to the far right is the effected output.
I have exactly this behaviour with the blend pot. Far left is the clean signal, moving towards middle ramps clean volume to nothing (no output), then past that to the far right is the effected output. Didn't get what's the reason.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 23, 2021, 10:28:57 PM
You might post voltages for the ic's, especially the 1458. And read the next to last pager of this thread where "the issue" with the 1458 triggering is discussed.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 24, 2021, 06:09:14 PM
Voltages:

TL074
pin 01: 4.5V
pin 02: 4.5V
pin 03: 4.5V
pin 04: 9.0V
pin 05: 4.5V
pin 06: 4.5V
pin 07: 4.5V
pin 08: 4.5V
pin 09: 4.5V
pin 10: 4.5V
pin 11: 0
pin 12: 3.8V
pin 13: 4.5V
pin 14: 4.5V

LM1458N
pin 1: 2.1V
pin 2: 2.0V
pin 3: 0
pin 4: 0
pin 5: 2.1V
pin 6: 2.1V
pin 7: 2.0V
pin 8: 9.0V

Decay pot has no voltage on lugs 1 & 2 (I think that's ok).

Sensivity pot doesn't have any voltage. Also, bandwidth switch doesn't have it as well on all its lugs. Could it be broken switch? I checked and it seems to connect required pins. I can hear clean unprocessed signal on the sensivity pot lugs 1 & 2; the same on the central pad of the bandwidth switch.

On send pad also having 0V. On the send pad I can hear clean unprocessed signal.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 24, 2021, 06:36:25 PM
Your IC voltages look OK.

Although the schematic shows Sensitivity is attached to 4.5v, pin 14, and should, unless all the way down, show something on pin 3, my notes show there is a 10uf coupling cap missing from the schematic and you are therefore OK

Are you sure you have the knobs set to work? Sensitivity max, attack min, decay about 9 o'clock, resonance noon, blend noon. Switches: Bandwidth in the middle (full), sweep up (LED off until you pick) range low, filter type on bandpass. And try a booster on your guitar.

The 1458 should show a distorted signal because it is acting as a 1/2 wave rectifier, turning your signal into DC (sort of) to trigger the LED.

The page of the thread I referred to talks about adding about 2 volts to pin 3 of the 1458 to make it bias closer to its operating range. (These things don't go lower than 2v.)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 24, 2021, 06:56:53 PM
Thanks for the reply!

Are you sure you have the knobs set to work? Sensitivity max, attack min, decay about 9 o'clock, resonance noon, blend noon. Switches: Bandwidth in the middle (full), sweep up (LED off until you pick) range low, filter type on bandpass. And try a booster on your guitar.
With these settings I hear clean guitar signal unfortunately.

The page of the thread I referred to talks about adding about 2 volts to pin 3 of the 1458 to make it bias closer to its operating range. (These things don't go lower than 2v.)
Would you please clarify what should be done in order to add biasing to pin 3 of the 1458? Haven't got it.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 24, 2021, 08:08:52 PM
Take a 100k pot. Attach the CW terminal to 9v somewhere on the board. Run a wire from the wiper to pin 3 of the 1458. There is already a 22k from pin 3 to ground (if you can find which one, you can attach your wire to the side attached to pin 3), you should see now about... less than 2v when the pot is set to CCW. As you turn it up you should approach 2v. Somewhere you will get the LED to light with no signal. (and with sensitivity maxed). You want it just below that point, so the detector is "on the edge." When (if) you get that to happen you can pick a resistor (or solder two together) to approximate that value.

You may also (if you have socketed the ics) try other Op-amps. I think we found the 358 (?) worked better... read the thread back a few pages. Spellbinding.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 25, 2021, 08:19:22 PM
I had no luck with biasing, the sound still was clear unprocessed guitar. Will get some op-amps and share the results. Thanks for help!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 25, 2021, 09:55:57 PM
If the LEDs are lighting up, the 1458 is not your problem. All it does is transform the signal into DC to drive the LED. Somehow your filter is not working.

Double checked all values of resistors around the tl074?

Double checked and reflowed solder joints?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 26, 2021, 10:53:46 AM
Are you sure you have the send/return jacks correct? I know I did them backwards first time.... I thought the send would be close to the input and the return close to the output, but no.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 26, 2021, 08:43:55 PM
For now having send and return hardwired, don't have jacks yet while testing.
Checked resistors values visually near TL074 and they look good. On the PCB 220k shows 17k; 120k shows 4.8k; 1.8M shows 1.2M, but that's probably due to internal PCB connections.


The most interesting part are LDRs. In the light environment one shows 4k and the other 6k, while in the dark they are 71k and 123k. So I'm having 2 different LDRs (probably Futurlec PHOTOCELL2 and PHOTOCELL2A). I believe this is not correct at all and LDRs are supposed to behave in the same way. Could this cause the filter not working?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 26, 2021, 09:27:57 PM
When you measure the LDR in circuit, they have parallel resistors to set their dark resistance below the multi mega-ohm level they have naturally, and those resistors are different:220k and 120k. So you should see different values. But having different kinds of LDR won't help the filter be "focused." Could be worth while to match them. Still that probably isn't your problem.

You should trace the signal. You did that up to the 1458 and heard the "rectified" signal, but the filtered signal isn't getting to the "blend" pot. We need to know where it vanishes. Is it getting to the filter IC? If the filter wasn't triggering you would still hear a signal from the CW side of the pot but it would be from a filter that is "stuck" and sounds bassy or tinny but won't sweep. If there is no sound, something is wrong.  The voltages tell us the tl074 is power up, but where is the signal dying?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 27, 2021, 10:16:46 AM
If the filter wasn't triggering you would still hear a signal from the CW side of the pot but it would be from a filter that is "stuck" and sounds bassy or tinny but won't sweep.
That's exactly what I hear on the CW side of the blend pot.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 27, 2021, 10:39:54 AM
At what points should I hear filtered sweeping signal?

TL074 gives me the following sounds:
01: very quiet clean signal, probably there's little bit of sweeping
02: quiet clean signal
03: quiet clean signal
04: distorted signal
05: no sound
06: no sound
07: quiet clean signal but louder than in 2 and 3
08: clean
09: no sound
10: no sound
11: no sound
12: clean
13: clean
14: clean
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 27, 2021, 01:00:27 PM
Are you trying to read the schematic at all? even if you don't really understand them you can follow the signal and start to learn.

TL074 power pins are 4 and 11. Funny you are getting signal on pin 4. Should not be happening.

12,13,14 are the input buffer. So good your signal is there.

The other three Op Amps have outputs 1=highpass, 7=bandpass, 8=lowpass. So those pins should sound like that. Just flipping the sweep (up/down) switch should turn the LEDs off and on and give you the  top and bottom of the sweep.
But funny that you getting something on these but nothing on your blend pot...that shouldn't be. The hp/bp/lp switch just chooses one of these three to go to the CW pin on the blend pot. How can there be something on 1,7,8 but nothing on the blend pot?

You should get pretty much the same signal on 14 and 2. I think you should trace it through the two big caps before send and after return and through that 10k attached to pin 2.

I took the trouble to hook one of mine up. The signal on 14 and 2 are the same level. The other 2 outputs are also strong.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 27, 2021, 01:14:23 PM
I do hear weak signal on pin 4, +power, so that is not bad. I don't understand it but it's not your problem.

It is normal to hear nothing in pins 5 and 10, as those are inputs tied to "vref" the mid voltage that biases the Op Amps.

I hear strong signal on 1,7,8 and the buffer. Other pins weak or nothing.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 27, 2021, 07:19:14 PM
Thanks for your patience! Trying to read the schematics. Sorry, for me it's not so easy.

But funny that you getting something on these but nothing on your blend pot...that shouldn't be. The hp/bp/lp switch just chooses one of these three to go to the CW pin on the blend pot. How can there be something on 1,7,8 but nothing on the blend pot?
Not exactly, sorry if I confused things. I meant that I had this: If the filter wasn't triggering you would still hear a signal from the CW side of the pot but it would be from a filter that is "stuck" and sounds bassy or tinny but won't sweep.

I traced the audio path from pin 14 to pin 2 of the TL074 and found that on the other side of 10k resistor (which is near pin 2) signal gets weaker. Going to replace that resistor.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 27, 2021, 07:31:05 PM
I was wrong about resistors when I checked them. I noticed that I have 10.5k resistors wired instead of 10k. Could this cause the issue?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 27, 2021, 07:38:00 PM
Do try an LM358 in place of 1458 if you can. I found not all 1458's worked. I tried from different brands with different results. My hunch is that the original guys had a set of components that worked just barely in this somewhat hacked together design. I don't remember if the LEDs lit up when the OpAmp was the problem....
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on January 27, 2021, 07:40:35 PM
10.5k should not change things. That is an odd value though... Is that by color code or measuring? I guess they do make those....
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 27, 2021, 07:42:43 PM
I have a bag of these 10.5k, so probably I soldered them instead of 10k since I don't have 10k...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on January 27, 2021, 09:12:41 PM
So I found some 10k resistors and replaced these which should be 10k, and I have the same results. Will get some LM358 and share results.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on March 09, 2021, 07:26:03 PM
So I found some 10k resistors and replaced these which should be 10k, and I have the same results. Will get some LM358 and share results.
Looks like LM358 fixed the issue, thanks for the help! The envelope appeared.

Now having issues with bypass wiring, probably I did something wrong, but instead of effect there is pretty loud noise when the effect is engaged.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on March 09, 2021, 08:17:46 PM
Congratulations on your functioning meatsphere.
Do you know how your bypass scheme is supposed to work?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on March 10, 2021, 08:41:03 AM
Do you know how your bypass scheme is supposed to work?
I'm using bypass scheme from the build doc and it is pretty straightforward.

The only thing which confuses me, in the build doc GND connection from power supply is not indicated as connected to the common ground. I also haven't wired a loop until I have working bypass.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on March 10, 2021, 12:01:56 PM
The Doc I see shows the DC jack going right to the board (both wires) and then tells you to ground all the jacks.

I attach them all to a lock washer (internal tooth, an extra from a foot switch) and add a jumper to the DC jack ground, and put this around there DC jack.

The jacks must be attached to the same ground as the circuit!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on March 10, 2021, 06:58:08 PM
For some reason my LED wiring was wrong. I decided to use PCB slot for the LED and it worked finally. Will post some pictures once it is boxed.

Thanks again, Idy, I own you a beer :)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on March 10, 2021, 08:08:57 PM
Wacka wacka. Hope you love it and use it.
I am big on adding a switch and buffer so you can blend in either send or return.... mixing a filtered fuzz with straight signal is bit of oil and water...mixing filtered fuzz with straight fuzz is phasey magic.
My next ambition is to add a phase switch to play with this blending... HP and LP are inverted.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on March 16, 2021, 07:20:09 PM
I am big on adding a switch and buffer so you can blend in either send or return.... mixing a filtered fuzz with straight signal is bit of oil and water...mixing filtered fuzz with straight fuzz is phasey magic.
My next ambition is to add a phase switch to play with this blending... HP and LP are inverted.
BTW, is there schematics for these mods? :)

Tried Meat Sphere with the Fuzz in the loop and it's so cool.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on March 16, 2021, 11:30:07 PM
No schematic but you can find simple strip board layouts for buffers (I used and IC, but BJT and FET work).

http://tagboardeffects.blogspot.com/2014/08/buffers.html (http://tagboardeffects.blogspot.com/2014/08/buffers.html)

You pull the #1 terminal of the blend pot out of the board and attach it to the center of a SPDT switch. Wire the buffer input to the "return" jack and the output to one terminal of the switch and the other terminal to the hole you pulled the pot terminal out of.

The phase mod: (unverified) You use a buffer that also has a phase reverse switch. These are also out there on strip board.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on March 16, 2021, 11:33:43 PM
A buffer with phase invert:
https://www.parasitstudio.se/stripboard-layouts/simple-buffer-and-phase-inverter
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on March 19, 2021, 02:07:15 AM
The buffer with inverter would have to be after the switch...so it would invert the non-filtered signal from either send or return. Again, haven't tried it.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: rectifierfx on March 29, 2021, 05:17:43 AM
Hi everyone,

I'm new to the boards. I joined after discovering musicpcb.com and the Meat Sphere. I've read this thread, and am excited to build my own! I'm a graphic designer by profession, so I enjoyed identically recreating the Lovetone Meatball pedal interface this morning. I used an overhead photo of the original pedal as an overlay, tracked down the typeface and got to work creating the vector art.

My template is designed for the pedal enclosure sold on eBay that closely resembles the original (I'm not associated with the seller). I plan to have the template cut into a vinyl to use as a spray stencil directly onto the pedal surface.

Below is a jpg preview. Awaiting my pedal enclosure so I confirm the specs before I can share. I'd be honored to share the actual PDF artwork with everyone here if they wish to do the same to theirs.

Cheers!
John

(http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m168/jl122/meatball_zps7qgt2myf.png) (http://s104.photobucket.com/user/jl122/media/meatball_zps7qgt2myf.png.html)

Can someone reupload the design ?
Seems like its not on photobucket anymore
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: KarenColumbo on March 30, 2021, 01:04:05 PM
As soon as this thread reaches 40 pages, I have to build a meat sphere. Fact.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: rectifierfx on March 30, 2021, 09:50:08 PM
As soon as this thread reaches 40 pages, I have to build a meat sphere. Fact.

Nah you gonna build them all :icon_mrgreen: Much more fun. I got kinda addicted to Lovetone stuff. Got the doppelganger already. Wobulator in the bench. Cheese / Source PCB half populated. The only 2 I‘m missing is the Sting Ringer and the Flanger without a name
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Marcos - Munky on March 30, 2021, 10:14:12 PM
As soon as this thread reaches 40 pages, I have to build a meat sphere. Fact.
Just commenting anything, to make my contribution for thread to reach 40 pages soon :icon_lol:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: KarenColumbo on March 31, 2021, 02:24:15 AM
As soon as this thread reaches 40 pages, I have to build a meat sphere. Fact.
Just commenting anything, to make my contribution for thread to reach 40 pages soon :icon_lol:
Wait! I didn't mean to ... ah ... damn!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bluebunny on March 31, 2021, 06:32:19 AM
As soon as this thread reaches 40 pages, I have to build a meat sphere. Fact.
Just commenting anything, to make my contribution for thread to reach 40 pages soon :icon_lol:

Ooops.  Slipped.  My bad.   :icon_redface: :icon_rolleyes: ;D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: duck_arse on March 31, 2021, 09:37:02 AM
As soon as this thread reaches 40 pages, I have to build a meat sphere. Fact.
Just commenting anything, to make my contribution for thread to reach 40 pages soon :icon_lol:

Ooops.  Slipped.  My bad.   :icon_redface: :icon_rolleyes: ;D

I, also, need to keep up my bullshit posts quotient.

are we there yet?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on April 22, 2021, 10:49:19 PM
I just opened one of mine and tried different values for the caps selected by the "range" switch. I have labeled one on mine "low, high, higher highest" because to me the second lowest already sounds like an angry mosquito and the other two settings maybe are to drive cats crazy.. or maybe bats.

The circuit adds three values to one tiny cap in parallel. (There are two poles doing this to two sets so that two stages of the SVF get equal caps.)
Stock values
2.2n
3.3n (=5.5)
6.8n (=9)
15n (=17.2)
My new ones
3.9n
4.7n (=8.6)
15n (=18.9)
33n (=36.9)

I think I have moved the range down an octave. I was kind of worried about what might happen with bass... there are warnings about not starting earthquakes with the original. With the guitar the new values sound very normal. I want to try some even larger values. I still feel the lowest is a midrange filter.

I guess the point is those values were maybe not handed down from Mt Sinai or conjured up by a real EE. Does anyone ever use the highest settings on the stock pedal?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 04, 2021, 05:08:12 PM
Currently building this. What's the deal with the extremely long switches? Are we supposed to cut them or something?


And also can somebody tell me about the send/return? Haven't built a pedal as complicated as this before (and can't read the schematics)...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Zoot on May 04, 2021, 05:29:17 PM
Hi Ivckv,
You have to cut them. Measure and cut neatly, with a metal saw it works very nicely.
The S/R jacks need to be switched stereo jacks. You will use them to add another effect, like a boost, for example, inside the MS circuit, adding flavor and control to the MS. This pedal will work only when the MS is on though.
Hope this helps.
Zoot
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 04, 2021, 05:51:32 PM
Ah thanks for that.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 04, 2021, 08:32:50 PM
Have guitar sound when the pedal is off but nothing when turned on (and no LED). Can anyone see what is going wrong here exactly?

(https://i.imgur.com/qBNIQHi.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/P7w5SZq.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on May 04, 2021, 09:00:42 PM
You did something funny with the pots? I can't see.

The LED you have will (if wired correctly) only light if the envelope generator is triggered. Turning the "up/down" switch to down means it would be normally on, triggering to turn off.


What voltages on the ICs? Are they getting power? Are they biasing up? What chip did you use for the "1458?" This is a dicey application of that chip, "biased" to 0v.

You may have trouble with the optocouplers...most of us ended up "rolling our own" like Lovetone did, from green diffused LEDs and LDR picked to go between a few K and over 1m.

Have you browsed this thread to see the recurring issues? Do you understand the schematic enough to have a rough idea what the Opamps are supposed to be doing?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 04, 2021, 09:36:32 PM
The pots are all just wired in standard fashion. Doesn't look anything wrong there.

Everything I have is just standard parts from MusikDing – MC1458P, TL074ACN. I imagine everything they sound would end up producing a real working pedal, rather than having to sub in our own parts, right? I see that the build instructions pdf (https://static1.squarespace.com/static/54696a3ee4b05a85cbfe56e5/t/552da76fe4b0a0d7241d2da9/1429055343405/Meat-Sphere-build-PDF-updated.pdf) says "MUST be LM1458 - standard dual opamps will not work" though..

Optocouplers are just VTL5C3.

When I build I usually follow parts placement/wiring diagrams like this (https://i.ibb.co/YTjpjsK/Screenshot-2021-05-05-at-02-10-15.png) because I haven't learned schematics.


I rewired the footswitch to exactly follow the pdf instructions – now there is no sound at all apart from some intermittent white noise, and still no LED.
Previously I had it wired in the same way as taku0319 did here on page 31 (https://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=92894.msg1185128#msg1185128).
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on May 04, 2021, 10:11:10 PM
All your grounds should connect together, so run a wire from one of your 1/4" jack grounds to the ground tab on your power jack.

After that, I'd check with a multimeter the voltages at the power pins of the two chips to make sure they're powered up.

Then, I'd build a little audio probe like this:

https://aronnelson.com/diywiki/index.php?title=Debugging

and check the output of each opamp in the TL074 - that would be the four corner pins, 1, 7, 8, 14. Play some sound into the effect while probing and you should be able to isolate how far through the circuit your signal is making it before things go wrong.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 05, 2021, 08:13:31 AM
Ok, seems like it was just some issue with the wiring because I've reworked it and now it seems to be fully working! lol


The LED still doesn't work though...  :icon_lol:
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 05, 2021, 09:39:31 AM
All done. LED is weak when turned on, then it's full when I switch the Up/Down to Down.

Also Down doesn't seem to actually do anything and I can't say I know why.

Everything else seems to work fine though.

(https://i.imgur.com/PDwTex4.jpg)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Taylor on May 05, 2021, 03:02:28 PM
It looks like you've done your bypass switch wiring differently than in the PDF, which I think is why your LED is not working right. Because the LED is meant to light up with the strength of your dynamics, the LED is not wired directly to ground in this circuit, which is why the PDF shows a different form of bypass wiring.

It also looks like your input jack ground is going to the board's LED negative terminal in addition to your star ground, which again isn't directly connected to ground.

You could either try wiring it up again according to the diagram in the PDF, or you could just wire one LED straight to the board's LED terminals, and use a separate LED with your standard bypass wiring diagram like you've used. Then you'd have one LED that shows bypass and one LED that shows the envelope doing its thing, instead of a single LED doing both.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 05, 2021, 04:58:51 PM
Will revisit it tomorrow. I wired according to the PDF at first but there was sound when the pedal was bypassed and no sound when pedal was switched on.

Right now the LED is weird, and then there is just 'white noise' sound when Up/Down is set to Down. When I turn Blend to the left the pedal sounds like velcro fuzz, and Sens/Attack/Decay switches do not seem to change anything in the sound.
There were no problems in buiding the board, though, so it's worrying that so much is wrong.

Maybe I should get a new PCB and start afresh.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on May 05, 2021, 06:17:51 PM
Blend to left = fuzz means something happening to what should be your buffered clean signal. Possible bias. Again, using a meter to measure voltages on the pins of the ICs would help diagnose.

If you read this thread you will see these things don't always fire up right the first time, there are several things that could be wrong, don't lose hope...yet.

Did you put the little "stop" washers on the rotaries so that they have the correct number of positions?

What settings are the rotary switches on? The bandwidth must be on "full" (or at least "1/2") for the trigger to work. That just switches in a smaller cap to make the trigger less sensitive to low notes. Turning it "off" totally disables the trigger section.

Decay must be higher that attack. Sensitivity and Intensity should be full for testing. My first ones needed a booster before to make the passive pickup signal hot enough to trigger. That issue has since been cleared up...
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 06, 2021, 01:41:42 PM
Have tested the voltages of both ICs.

LM1458

7.00      0.01
6.63      6.72
8.75      6.53
0.12      7.48

TL074

4.46      4.46
4.46      4.46
4.39      1.58
0.00      8.53
4.41      4.41
4.46      4.46
4.46      4.46



I've also rewired again to follow the PDF. The stop washers have been in the switches in the correct position, yes.
This is how each setting sounds at the moment...
Only the Colour and Intensity switches affect the sound in any position. The bottom right filter switch doesn't affect the sound either.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on May 06, 2021, 01:46:25 PM
Have tested the voltages of both ICs.

LM1458

7.00      0.01
6.63      6.72
8.75      6.53
0.12      7.48


You sure about these? Make sure you are listing the voltages correctly. Like this:

(https://components101.com/asset/sites/default/files/component_pin/LM4558-IC-Pinout.png)

OR this:
(http://www.swarthmore.edu/NatSci/echeeve1/Class/e72/E72L2/L2_411.gif)

**** PICS ARE FOR REFERENCE OF NOTCHES OR DOTS ON THE CHIP. NOT FOR TYPE OF OP AMP ****
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 06, 2021, 01:48:58 PM
Ah ok. I laid it out as it is on the IC – top row left to right, next row etc.

So it's like this then.

1: 7.00
2: 6.63
3: 8.75
4: 0.12

5: 7.48
6: 6.53
7: 6.72
8: 0.01

and

1: 4.46
2: 4.46
3: 4.39
4: 0.00
5: 4.41
6: 4.46
7: 4.46

8: 4.46
9: 4.46
10: 4.41
11: 8.53
12: 1.58
13: 4.46
14: 4.46
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on May 06, 2021, 01:53:11 PM
Ah ok. I laid it out as it is on the IC – top row left to right, next row etc.

So it's like this then.

1: 7.00
2: 6.63
3: 8.75
4: 0.12

5: 7.48
6: 6.53
7: 6.72
8: 0.01


You should be getting around 9VDC on Pin 8 of this IC. You are getting 0.

EDIT: Are you using an LM1458 for this chip? Is so, where did you get it from? Nevermind... I read it above.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 06, 2021, 02:00:02 PM
It's an MC1458P and the other is a TL074ACN.

Everything from Musikding as part of the Meat Sphere kit.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on May 06, 2021, 02:08:23 PM
I would remove the MC1458 chip and check for continuity between Pin 8 of the MC1458 and Pin 11 of the TL074. If you do not have continuity, you need to find out why not.

If you do, then you need to find out what is draining all of the voltage going to Pin 8 of the MC1458.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on May 06, 2021, 02:24:59 PM
This is kind of repeating other faster responses. I am taking one of mine out and measuring....

I'm still not sure you are counting right, or there is something really odd... Counting counter-clockwise with 1 on the left side upper corner near the notch. With the pots on "top" the 1 pin is upper left on both chips.

With the 1458 you should at least see 0 (or close) on pin 4 and 9v (or close) on pin 8. It is a dual Opamp, like the first diagram Govt Lackey posted, they are all like that. When the up/down is set to "up" you should see less than 1v on the other 6 pins. This opamp is kind of funny; usually we have them biased to mid voltage, but this trigger is referenced with a 22k to ground, and the 1458 doesn't really function close to ground, everything hangs at less than 1v. Even when the up/down is set to down the pins won't go far above 2v.

Pin 12 of the 074 is not good. That is the input of the buffer your guitar goes into first. It should be 4.5v. There is a 1.8m resistor connecting it to Vref. Is that correct? Do you measure 4.5v at the other end? Is it not soldered well? Is pin 12 shorted to something? It seems like vref is working because we see lots of 4.5 on the opamp.

I don't understand your "settings". Not clear which switches you are referring to.
For testing:
 *bandwidth should be on full, which is the middle setting.
 *up/down you may want to toggle back and forth, as that mimics the action of the trigger section, turning the LED with no signal off or on.
  *the range and lp/bp/hp are not so important yet. Lowest setting of range is easiest to hear though.

The knobs are important. Sensitivity and Intensity max. Attack CCW, decay up a little bit. Blend you will need to go back and forth to hear the buffered guitar at CCW and the filter at CW.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 06, 2021, 02:48:18 PM
Yep, I'm counting the pins right. 1 is upper left when turned around.

The side of the 1.8m resistor closest to the TL074 gives the same reading as pin 12 – 1.58.
The other side of the resistor gives a reading of 4.42.

Checked the MC1458 again and pin 4 gives 8.94, pin 8 gives 0.00.

The soldering isn't like professional level but it's all in condition where you'd expect things to be working. No solder bridges or anything like that.


Quote
I don't understand your "settings". Not clear which switches you are referring to.

Just basically turn the switches to these and this is the sound that comes out. Switches from left to right as you look at pedal.

Bandwidth switch in any position - UP - filter range is LO, 1 or 2 - any pass = filter with a quiet high pitched buzz
Bandwidth switch in any position - DOWN - filter range is LO, 1 or 2 - any pass = regular guitar tone
Bandwidth switch in any position - DOWN - filter range is HI - any pass = white noise
Bandwidth switch in any position - UP - filter range is HI - any pass = jangly regular guitar tone that sounds like a bridge pickup
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on May 06, 2021, 05:44:50 PM
OK, so you are getting proper power to both ICs. Better.
There is still the mystery of pin 12. I would remove that IC (you did socket them?) and then with power on, recheck that voltage. Until there is around 4.5 (meter could load it a bit below that, maybe 4.2ish) you will not have a chance.

And now that the power is reaching the 1458, what are the other pins? try with the up/down switch in both positions. Does the visual LED go on and off when you do this?



If people keep mentioning solder joints it is because even joints that look perfect under a magnifying glass can be loose inside, "cold solder joints." I can't tell you how many times I have been just where you are, with a mis-biased opamp, rechecking everything and scratching my head, until I discovered that one resistor that looked *perfect* would move ever so slightly when touched!

Remember: a vintage Meat Ball would cost an arm and a leg. This one may only cost you a few grey hairs.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: bluebunny on May 07, 2021, 04:22:50 AM
I would say that power *isn't* getting to the 1458 - at least, not the right way round.  If you've really got the power backwards, it's likely zorched.  And you then need to work out why it's backwards: socket wrong way round, or bad layout?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on May 07, 2021, 07:10:35 AM
Checked the MC1458 again and pin 4 gives 8.94, pin 8 gives 0.00.

This is backwards. You should have 0V at Pin 4 and ~9V at Pin 8.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 07, 2021, 09:44:33 AM
I resoldered the 1M8 next to the TL074 and it still gets the same readings. Just removed the MC1458. Think I'm done. Don't have the tech ability to test and fix whatever is wrong here. Thanks for trying to help.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on May 07, 2021, 10:04:40 AM
I resoldered the 1M8 next to the TL074 and it still gets the same readings. Just removed the MC1458. Think I'm done. Don't have the tech ability to test and fix whatever is wrong here. Thanks for trying to help.

Couple of questions before you throw in the towel:

1) Could the low voltage on Pin 12 of the TL074 be due to the impedance of the multimeter?
2) Are you positive that the diodes (D1 & D2?) are BOTH installed in the correct orientation?
3) Are you positive that the MC1458 is installed with the proper orientation? (Pin 1 of both ICs should be facing the pots at the top of the PCB)
4) With the MC1458 removed, do you get a direct short between Pin 8 and Ground?

I think your problem is going to be obvious and easy once you find it. Don't give up just yet  ;D
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on May 07, 2021, 10:18:25 AM
Well, OK, we all put a few in the fail pail. But next time you order try an LM358, and maybe a LM1458(not MC). But especially the 358. I have had these not fire up, meaning trigger, with the 1458, and then work with 358. I know the original used 1458, but its not an engineer's first choice. They had a batch that happened to work. They are not all equal. It could be that simple.

The PCB is super clear and it is unlikely that you have actually reversed the power, more likely we are just not communicating clearly.

And the VTL opto couplers, although specified, have given poor results for many, so we do as love tone did, green diffused LEDs and LDRs with dark resistance over 1m. Cheap solution and you can see the LEDs light up if you want, be sure that part is working.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: lvckv on May 07, 2021, 03:19:36 PM
Can get some LM358 and LM1458 to try if that'll do anything. There seems to be so much wrong with it though – would changing that really fix most of the pots and switches not doing anything?

The VTLs both give 0.00 readings at the top and 4.6~ on the bottom if that's worth anything. The LED+LDR thing is something I'd need a whole tutorial for tbh.

I resoldered the 1M8 next to the TL074 and it still gets the same readings. Just removed the MC1458. Think I'm done. Don't have the tech ability to test and fix whatever is wrong here. Thanks for trying to help.

Couple of questions before you throw in the towel:

1) Could the low voltage on Pin 12 of the TL074 be due to the impedance of the multimeter?
2) Are you positive that the diodes (D1 & D2?) are BOTH installed in the correct orientation?
3) Are you positive that the MC1458 is installed with the proper orientation? (Pin 1 of both ICs should be facing the pots at the top of the PCB)
4) With the MC1458 removed, do you get a direct short between Pin 8 and Ground?

I think your problem is going to be obvious and easy once you find it. Don't give up just yet  ;D

1. Don't think so having read up on it.

2. All diodes are facing cathode left which is what the board indicates.

3. MC1458 was in the right orientation. Removed now so can't do anything with that unless I get a new LM1458.

4. When I test where the MC1458 used to be I get 9.25 on 8 and 0.00 on 1-7.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Zoot on May 08, 2021, 05:10:14 PM
It has been answered in this thread, and you are right. I doesn‘t make any difference.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Jbakelaar on May 22, 2021, 07:52:00 PM
I have two questions that are intrelated:
I had purchased 1/4 Monocraft #11 switches for all 4 required audio switches
http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/1-4-in-mono-switchcraft-11/


1) I want to add the expression pedal to the Intensity control...

On page 20
Adding the Intensity expression jack is worth doing -- it should be possible on the Meatsphere by running wires from pins 1 and 3 of the Intensity pot (wire it to the board as normal) to an insulated jack, with one on the sleeve, the other on the tip. Use a high impedance expression pedal.

Nice wah-ish effect.


I know it must be a TRS type of 1/4 audio input.
What audio jack do I need? 

2)On page 27

The return jack needs to be a switching type, like this one:

http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/1-4-in-mono-nys2152/

It can be mono or stereo, doesn't matter. You'll be connecting the Send jack to the tip-switch of the jack (in the jack above, that's the terminal on the left of the image, which is connected to the tip terminal when no plug is inserted into the jack). It sounds like you may have used a non-switched stereo jack and wired that to the ring terminal instead. So if you have a switched jack, you may just need to swap that wire over. If that doesn't fix it, once you can upload a photo of your build we might be able to spot what's up.


What do the other 3 audio jacks should I be using?


I don't want to use the uninsulated jacks that I currently have, as most builds seem to be using plastic sleeved or insulated unless someone can verify that what I have will work flawlessly.
No point in ruining my build over $15-20 of the correct jack.


Since it has been made clear which jack to use for return, please advise which jacks are best for In, Out, Send and for an Expression pedal.


Thank you Taylor for making this possible on so many levels and providing guidance - & to everyone else who provides knowledge!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on May 22, 2021, 09:21:52 PM
In, out, send, return do not need to be insulated, only the expression pedal. The four audio jacks are using a common ground; the expression is putting a pedal in parallel with the intensity pot, which does not go to ground. Any mono or stereo, insulated jack will work.

None of the jacks need to be TRS. They are all tip and sleeve, or "mono." I have used switchcraft or these, which are TRS and switched, I just don't use the Ring or the switching except on the return.

https://www.taydaelectronics.com/hardware/6-35mm-1-4-plugs-jacks/6-35mm-1-4-stereo-phone-jack.html

the data sheet has a tiny schematic that shows this model, the PJ-629HAN has tip and ring N.C. switch terminals. Cheap, versatile.


The return needs to be switched, i.e. normally closed. When nothing is plugged in, the signal goes from send to return. When something is plugged in, this connection is broken and the send/return is an effects loop. This also allows one signal (input) to trigger the filter (perhaps a drum?) while something else is fed into the return to be processed. Any switched N.C. jack will work.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Jbakelaar on June 06, 2021, 02:18:06 PM
Anyone have a printable graphic they would be willing to share?
I tried making my own and am frustrated getting spacing and sizing correct, and dealing with the printer  :icon_evil:

My enclosure was drilled using this template:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/10MXV805zvi-eQg-G3M1ztVRzw934D-bD/view?usp=sharing

Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on June 07, 2021, 06:51:34 PM
Yes the switches can be rotated to three different but equal positions.
This question has been answered lots of times on this thread. It would save time to at least skim the thread before you get too far along...Partake of the collected wisdom and avoid our mistakes!  :icon_biggrin:

There are quite a few places you can get caught. My unsolved frustration is still dealing with the different height of the rotary switches and pots... I end up bending the legs of the pots to straighten them... I think I have tried putting them so the ends of there legs just barely go through the PCB... I don't buy from a place that has the "long pin" pots in all values and don't know if they will work. I think the original Meat Ball enclosure was "stepped," the part with the pots was lower than the part with the switches.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on June 21, 2021, 08:25:24 PM
Meatspherers: What say you about long pin pots for this? I am using conventional flat enclosures and have been bending the pot lugs straight... Or using solid core wire and solder terminal pots... Are the long pin pots the right length to even up with the rotary switches? Other good options?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on June 22, 2021, 06:57:25 AM
Meatspherers: What say you about long pin pots for this? I am using conventional flat enclosures and have been bending the pot lugs straight... Or using solid core wire and solder terminal pots... Are the long pin pots the right length to even up with the rotary switches? Other good options?

I have found that when using the typical Alpha rotary switches that the right angle pots seem to just barely be long enough to solder when placed into the holes. I often just solder resistor bits on to solder lug pots and work from there.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Jbakelaar on June 26, 2021, 07:46:57 PM
My build(s) are going great!  I have a longer post coming with some things I learned that may be helpful especially for other newbie DIYers.

Has anyone built an effects loop bypass?
Yarg started the discussion over 6 years ago (p. 22) and Granny Gremlin posted a circuit design on p.26.

I have a 4 position stomp switch but I'm having a hard time figuring out how to wire it up to keep the effects pedals live when the meatball is off.

(https://i.postimg.cc/q633X5rM/bypass-circuit.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/q633X5rM)

I added some terminal numbers to Granny Gremlin's diagram.

Can anyone say if this idea works?

I just can't make sense of where positions 3, 6, and 9 are meant to be integrated into the circuit.

Can anyone shed some light?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on July 05, 2021, 06:10:50 PM
Meatspherers: What say you about long pin pots for this? I am using conventional flat enclosures and have been bending the pot lugs straight... Or using solid core wire and solder terminal pots... Are the long pin pots the right length to even up with the rotary switches? Other good options?
I was using solder lugs pots.
I just opened one of mine and tried different values for the caps selected by the "range" switch. I have labeled one on mine "low, high, higher highest" because to me the second lowest already sounds like an angry mosquito and the other two settings maybe are to drive cats crazy.. or maybe bats.

The circuit adds three values to one tiny cap in parallel. (There are two poles doing this to two sets so that two stages of the SVF get equal caps.)
Stock values
2.2n
3.3n (=5.5)
6.8n (=9)
15n (=17.2)
My new ones
3.9n
4.7n (=8.6)
15n (=18.9)
33n (=36.9)

I think I have moved the range down an octave. I was kind of worried about what might happen with bass... there are warnings about not starting earthquakes with the original. With the guitar the new values sound very normal. I want to try some even larger values. I still feel the lowest is a midrange filter.

I guess the point is those values were maybe not handed down from Mt Sinai or conjured up by a real EE. Does anyone ever use the highest settings on the stock pedal?
Very nice and interesting idea! Wanna try.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on July 05, 2021, 06:13:24 PM
Anyone have a printable graphic they would be willing to share?
I tried making my own and am frustrated getting spacing and sizing correct, and dealing with the printer  :icon_evil:

My enclosure was drilled using this template:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/10MXV805zvi-eQg-G3M1ztVRzw934D-bD/view?usp=sharing
The following pic was shared by @skarkowtsky a little bit earlier:
(http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m168/jl122/meatball_zps7qgt2myf.png)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: telebiker on July 05, 2021, 06:13:47 PM
Anyone have a printable graphic they would be willing to share?
I tried making my own and am frustrated getting spacing and sizing correct, and dealing with the printer  :icon_evil:

My enclosure was drilled using this template:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/10MXV805zvi-eQg-G3M1ztVRzw934D-bD/view?usp=sharing
The following pic was shared by @skarkowtsky a little bit earlier:
(http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m168/jl122/meatball_zps7qgt2myf.png)
http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m168/jl122/meatball_zps7qgt2myf.png
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on July 29, 2021, 01:39:04 PM
A recent thread brought up new Meatball clone, Aion's Spectron. The build doc has many interesting observations, which I thought I'd present here as of interest to all Meatball fans.

The original does not use light shields (like heat shrink) over the LDR/LED combos. Aion thinks the lack of shield may actually affect the sound. Interaction?

Aion finds no available Vactrol with the same specs as the original LDR/LED combo. Some may work, but the effect becomes a different animal.  The GL5537-1 is recommended as spot on for original function and sound. VTL5C3 may work, but Aion advises lowering the resistors around the LEDs to 100ohm. I can confirm that VTL5C3 don't really work without tinkering. I just ordered some GL5537-1s.

The original trigger chip had the label sanded off, so the specification of LM1458 is based on early researchers trying one and finding it "worked." Aion found (and I confirm) that 1458s "sometimes" work "sort of," but replacing this chip with an LM358 "always" works and works like the original.

The Spectron includes both the original expression jacks and a separate trigger jack...the original allowed an external trigger bu plugging it onto the return without using the send, but forced you to set the "blend" to 100% to avoid bleeding the trigger into your audio path...This is an improvement.

Spectrum changes two of the rotary switches to toggles. Definitely something to think about. The "mode" and "range" require the respectively 3 poles and 4 positions, so they stay, but the others are kind of unnecessary.

Aion adds the "Moog mod". I have begun hardwiring the Moog mod always on, because it seems like bass players need it, and guitarists can't tell its on, and this thing already has a lot of switches....

Aion puts the two rotary switches on daughter boards to fix the height difference with the pots. More wiring, but solves an issue.

I'm still loving my Meatspheres with a switch to select the clean side of blend between send and return (buffered). I have also tried adding a switchable phase inverting buffer here. You can definitely hear the difference, can't say the out-of-phase settings (original has HP and LP out-of-phase) sound bad or weak, but in-phase sounds richer. Its a little awkward to "explain" to a user that the switch has BP in-phase and HP and LP out in one position, and vice versa in the other... In a perfect version I would add a fixed inverter stage to the BP and "normalize" the action of the switch.

Another observation: I recently couldn't find in my drawers any LDRs with a high on resistance (above 1-2k) so I used what I had and added series resistors and was happy. I am having trouble with the data sheet... maybe GL5537-1 has a 20-30k light resistance? Seems high...https://www.kth.se/social/files/54ef17dbf27654753f437c56/GL5537.pdf (https://www.kth.se/social/files/54ef17dbf27654753f437c56/GL5537.pdf)

Science marches on. Keep it Meaty people!
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: aion on July 29, 2021, 04:59:28 PM
A recent thread brought up new Meatball clone, Aion's Spectron. The build doc has many interesting observations, which I thought I'd present here as of interest to all Meatball fans.

The Spectron wouldn't have been half as good if it wasn't for all the information in this thread... which, hard to believe, just turned a decade old on Tuesday. Thanks to everyone who's contributed along the way - including sharing your failures and frustration, since that's where most of the improvements come from.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Zoot on August 12, 2021, 05:54:02 PM
Hey idy,
Thanks for the new Meat Sphere tips. Aion is right about the LDRs. I just tried the GL5537-1s.
Tone seems in general brighter, and the effect is more scooped. Just some of the perfect sounds you want to hear from a great envelope like this one.
I had some noisy clipping with color at max with the VTL5C3s. It completely disappears with those LDRs, and with color at max and other more “radical” settings, the pedal whistles. I tried 5mm and 10mm green diffused LEDs uncovered, and 5mm ones covered (picture).
I thought that with the 10mm the sound was too bright, and the envelope too “whistly”. No much difference between covered and uncovered ones. I opt for uncovered, just because they look cooler. The vactrols were retired.
Thanks again.
Zoot


(https://i.postimg.cc/Y4k2CQvY/D52-E3-C78-4-D6-B-4-E9-F-A469-B74714-CD3-E85.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/Y4k2CQvY)
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on August 12, 2021, 06:15:39 PM
I'm interested in this "whistle" business. Is this a high pitched whistle when the filter is on full?

Since that sounds like feedback it would make sense that you get it when the "color" (really feedback) knob is up high.

Are you saying that with 5mm LEDs the whistle is gone?
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Zoot on August 12, 2021, 06:27:14 PM
I'm interested in this "whistle" business. Is this a high pitched whistle when the filter is on full?

Since that sounds like feedback it would make sense that you get it when the "color" (really feedback) knob is up high.

Are you saying that with 5mm LEDs the whistle is gone?

The whistle doesn’t sound abnormal, just the effect at its max indeed. I’m going to sleep now (GMT+1), but can soon post a sound sample. My impression is that the whistle is more frequent (not only at max) with the big LED indeed, but I can make it with the 5mm as well.
Cheers
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on August 12, 2021, 07:00:17 PM
I haven't yet tried the GL5537-1, but I have some now. They actually test the same as the assorted ones I already had, which is to say that in ambient room light the light resistance is pretty low, under 2k. I should probably have a test with LEDs at levels of light like in circuit.

The last Meatsphere I made I used the old ones and ended up happier with a series resistor, I think less than 10k, because that seemed around the target value. It sounded less harsh, didn't 'flip out' didn't 'go too far' for my taste.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: kato on September 12, 2021, 03:48:12 PM
Don't be this guy who lifted two pads from a perfectly working Meatsphere because he read roll-your-own vactrols are better than the VTL5C3's.

(https://i.postimg.cc/HrF9Wtfr/IMG-3064.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/HrF9Wtfr)

Or don't be so lazy that you can't unbox the thing and remove them properly from the bottom.

I hate to do it, but I'm gonna clip the leads and waste these two vactrols so I don't lift any more pads! These two pads appear to be not-connected to any traces on the reverse side so the fix should be pretty easy.

PS, hi guys, thanks for all the helpful tips in this thread.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: kato on September 14, 2021, 06:55:23 PM
I probably should've left well enough alone because it was working great with the VTL5C3's.

I'm thinking my LEDs are too bright. I've tried two different pairs now. I get filter, but no envelope. It no longer quacks, just whistles and whines. Rapidly turning the Intensity knob mimics a wah pedal, but it no longer auto-wahs.

Does the roll-your-own vactrol need to be in the dark for the envelope to quack? I figured closing the lid would make it dark enough. But maybe the light from each neighboring vactrol is affecting the LDRs.

If anyone has any tips, I'd love to hear them.  Thanks.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on September 14, 2021, 07:37:29 PM
The back on should be dark enough.

It is possible to "pad" the LDR with additional resistors to make it not so harsh. The value of LDR makes a big difference. I still have not used the suggested GL-55371.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: PRR on September 14, 2021, 08:53:25 PM
When I was prototyping a recording limiter, I had to work in the dark (windowless concrete block room) AND with a heavy cardboard shield over each opto-resistor. Light leaked under the edge of the shield. I had a highly-masked desk-lamp to read my meters at the verge of visibility.

So without seeing just what you are doing, I would advise you DARKER DARKER DARKER until you can show what minimum level messes your system. Your effect may not be as fussy as my limiter, because the "normal" mode of the recording limiter is NO-light (full signal) while your FX may be more/less light.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: kato on September 15, 2021, 05:57:36 PM
The back on should be dark enough.

It is possible to "pad" the LDR with additional resistors to make it not so harsh. The value of LDR makes a big difference. I still have not used the suggested GL-55371.

Thanks. It never occurred to me that maybe the LDR is actually the problem!
I've tried orange 5mm LEDs which may have been too bright at 2500mcd. (I've read orange-yellow-and-green should all be within the spectrum picked up by the LDR.) They were "always on" to some degree even with no signal, but brighter when the guitar strummed. I also tried green LEDs in 5mm and 3mm with the same problem.

This batch of LDRs I bought were possibly a little too cheap and may be out of spec cast offs. Maybe I should buy a known pair of LDRs. Do you remember which model you're using?

(https://i.postimg.cc/Mc5TPkSN/IMG-3065.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/Mc5TPkSN)


And yeah, I bumped the 100Ω resistors to 300Ω per the Aion documents, but perhaps I need to try even higher resistance into the LEDs.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: kato on September 15, 2021, 06:08:05 PM
When I was prototyping a recording limiter, I had to work in the dark AND (windowless concrete block room) with a heavy cardboard shield over each opto-resistor. Light leaked under the edge of the shield. I had a highly-masked desk-lamp to read my meters at the verge of visibility.

So without seeing just what you are doing, I would advise you DARKER DARKER DARKER until you can show what minimum level messes your system. Your effect may not be as fussy as my limiter, because the "normal" mode of the recording limiter is NO-light (full signal) while your FX may be more/less light.

Thanks PRR. I'll try DARKER by wrapping them in electrical tape before I swap out the LEDs yet again. The pads are now lifted from all the LED swapping.  I've noticed a slight wah effect is created when I move the box around with the back door open, even from a rather distant overhead light.

BTW, thanks for all your advice over the years. I often think of advice you gave me decades ago when I was first starting out. For example, last night: "that probably wasn't enough heat to burn out a silicon diode" based on something PRR once said. For real. A lot of your comments have stuck with me over these years. I appreciate it.


Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: PRR on September 15, 2021, 11:21:24 PM
Red LEDs work perfectly fine. People who think PhotoRs are color-fussy have not tried it. "Red is best" because historically cheapest (less true now that all are cheap), good sensitivity, and low forward voltage.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: idy on September 16, 2021, 01:03:38 AM
Aion recently did the deep dive for their Spectron, and suggest GL-55371 ldr as faithful in performance to original MeatBall. Yes the LDRs matter.

The originals used green LEDs but I trust PRR that color is not important, although it will light with less voltage so that may change the sweep. Socket and experiment if you can! That's how I came to add series resistors to the (unknown model) LDRs in my last build. I think they are not supposed to go below 10k with the LEDs on....

The original meatball also did not use a light shield, although their rolled metal enclosure has unknown light shielding properties.
Title: Re: Building the Meat Sphere
Post by: Govmnt_Lacky on September 16, 2021, 06:52:07 AM
As per the originals (as said by Dan Coggins) the Meatball ,Doppelganger, and Ring Stinger all use 20-30K On/2M Off LDRs and Diffused Green LEDs. The Flanger and Wobulator used 20-30K On/20M Off LDRs and used a mix of Green Diffused and Low-Brightness water clear Green LEDs. Although I have always used Diffused Green throughout in all builds successfully.

My suggestion is to look at the datasheets for the LDRs. This will tell you the nominal spectrum that the LDRs react to. Most on the market fall squarely within the Green color range.

Good Luck  ;D