2. "Are all your modules going to be available for a number of years?" This is our plan, however some modules may be out of stock for a few months at a time depending on new projects. In general, our designs are excellent and will serve the needs of the modular synthesist indefinitely. At some point, the limiting factor may be the availability of specific electronic components.
3. "Can I use Blacet Modules with those from "xyz" modular?" Generally, all modular equipment can be mixed and matched. There may be the odd difference in CV ranges/polarities or Gate levels. It is not possible to damage the modules by plugging in the wrong signal, as long as you keep the levels in the +/-15V range.
The biggest difference in modular systems is the size of the panels,
the jack size and the power supply voltages. Module height is a typical
way to characterize systems. For instance, MOTM uses 8.75" (5 RU) high
modules, Blacet, Paia, Doepfer, etc use 5" (3 RU).
An "RU" or rack unit is 1.75". The smaller units tend to use 1/8" jacks, the larger; 1/4".
There are some small physical
differences between the Euro Rack(Doepfer, etc.) and the Frac Rack
(Blacet, Paia, Wiard, Metalbox, etc.) that make it impractical to use
the mounting systems interchangeably.
All modules these days are designed to be placed in a sub mounting system that is 19" rack compatible. That means that you can place a mixture of module systems in a box such as those made by SKB.
The Euro modules tend to use +/-12V power; the American, +/-15V. Our
+/-15V and power connector system is fully compatible with Synthesis
(MOTM). The new Paia modules can be run off our +/-15V supply by using
a Paia to Blacet cable and removing or jumpering the Paia module power
input resistors. See the Paia
site for more info. Other makers such as Wiard and Metalbox also use
4. "I'm having trouble with the module mounting screws; help!" We use self tapping screws to mount the modules in the rack. This means that the screw threads are actually cut the first time that you insert the screw. Naturally, this takes more force than usual.
One trick is to “pre-tap” the screw holes prior to actually mounting the modules. Make sure that the screw is going straight in and that you have the proper size screwdriver with a good grip. Position the rack on it's back side so that you are pushing *down* on the screws as you proceed. Do all four holes, removing the screw as you proceed. Then actually mount the module.