Multiphonics CV-2 Manual

Version 2.2.0


The Multiphonics CV‑2 workspace is composed of a rack that displays the current patch1, along with a toolbar and various utility panels.


The toolbar covers the topmost part of the Multiphonics interface and is always visible.

Panel Switches

The panel switches are used to show or hide utility panels.

The synth version of Multiphonics has three panels:

The effect version has only two panels:

View Menu

The view menu lets you customize your workspace. It has three sub-sections:

  • Panels Choosing a panel with no check mark will display it, and choosing one with a check mark will hide it.
  • Cable Opacity Cables can be opaque (100%), translucent (75% to 25%), or hidden.
  • GUI Scaling Makes the whole GUI smaller or bigger. While the handle at the bottom-right of the window will change the workspace size, the GUI scaling setting will change the size of the GUI elements within the window.

Locate Button

Pressing the Locate button will open the Patch Browser and highlight the current patch.

Patch Navigator

This area shows the name of the current patch, and provides left and right arrows to navigate to the previous or next preset. Clicking on the patch name will open a menu from where you can load any patch in the collection that is currently opened in the Patch Browser.

Help Button

The Help button opens the About window, which shows the product version and your registration information. Clicking on the Multiphonics CV‑2 Manual button will open the manual you are currently reading.

New Patch

The New button clears the current patch and opens the Module Browser so you can start building a new patch right away.

Save Patch

The Save button opens a dialog that lets you save the patch. Saving is described in depth in the Patching—Saving Patches section.


The Undo button lets you cancel the changes you made to the patch (in reverse order). Multiphonics is very forgiving: every change in the rack can be undone, even loading a new patch or clearing the current patch with the New button. Up to 100 changes can be undone.

The Redo button re-instates the changes that have been undone. It is only active if you have not changed the patch since the last undo.

Level Meter

The level meter shows the current RMS value of the outputs. For geeks out there, it is calibrated so that a 10V peak-to-peak sine wave—such as the Classic VCO sine wave output—just barely registers at 0 dB on the level meter when the Output Mixer gains are all at 0 dB and the signal is centered.

The peaking (PK) LED will turn on after a few samples of clipping, which occurs when the signal goes beyond ±25V. If the Output Mixer limiter is enabled, there will be no clipping.

Patch Browser

The patch browser is found in the left panel. The patch library is split in different collections, which are displayed when the patch browser is first open. We call this the collection list.

Collection List

The collection list always contains the following items:

  • All Patches This special collection shows all patches from all collections.
  • User Contains any patch that you created, modified and saved, or imported from another source. It also contains a special Featured category, as described in the next section.
  • Factory (effect only) Contains all effect patches that come with Multiphonics CV‑2.
  • Factory CV‑2 (instrument only) Contains all instrument patches that come with Multiphonics CV‑2.
  • Factory CV‑1 (instrument only) Contains all instrument patches that originally shipped with Multiphonics CV‑1.

If you have purchased Multiphonics sound packs, they will appear below the aformentioned collections. In the image above, we can see two extension sound packs: Currents and Modular City.

Clicking on a collection will open the list of patches in that collection. We call this the patch list.

Patch List

In the patch list, clicking on a patch name will load the patch. The current patch is always highlighted in the patch list.

To return to the collection list, click on the back arrow, or anywhere on the current collection image.

Within the patch list, patches are organized in categories that describe the kind of sound produced by the patch. Instrument patch categories have names like Basses, Leads or Percussions, while effect patch categories have names like Distortions, Filters or Reverbs.

To reduce visual clutter, the contents of a category can be hidden by clicking on its name.

Featured Patches

The Featured category is a special patch category that is always listed at the top of the patch list when the All Patches or User collections are selected. It is stored in the User collection even though it initially contains a selection of the AAS staff’s favorite factory patches.

Any time a new Multiphonics CV‑2 plug-in instance is loaded, it will automatically open the first patch in the Featured category. Since this category is stored in your User library, you can replace its contents with a selection of your own favorite patches.

If you like a patch from the Factory library and want to keep it in the Featured category, simply click on Save in the toolbar and choose Featured from the category list. The patch will now be easy to find at the top of the patch list.

On disk, this category is stored in a folder in your user library. If you delete all patches from this folder but leave the folder in place, the Featured category will no longer appear in the patch list and new plug-in instances will open with an empty rack.

If you delete the Featured folder entirely, it will automatically be re-created and filled with the original AAS staff picks.

The first time the standalone version of Multiphonics CV‑2 is launched, it will load the first patch from the Featured folder. After that, it will automatically recall the contents of the rack as they were when it was last used.

Renaming, Moving, Importing and Exporting Patches

Each patch is stored in a small file on your computer. Instead of inventing a new way to organize and manage files from inside Multiphonics, we decided to take advantage of the powerful tools that are already on your computer. Any file operation you may want to do on a patch can be done with the Finder (Mac) or Windows Explorer (Windows).

To open a Finder or Explorer window in the folder where a patch is stored, right-click (or control-click on Mac) on its name in the browser and choose Show in Finder (Mac) or Show in Explorer (Windows). Alternatively, you can click on the patch name to load it, then click on the circled ellipsis icon next to the name, and select Show in Finder (Mac) or Show in Explorer (Windows) from the menu.

Renaming or moving a patch is just a matter of renaming or moving its file. Here is an example of how to rename and move a file on a Mac:

Exporting a patch is done by sending the file by email, file-sharing service or instant messaging to its intended recipient. Conversely, importing a patch is done by copying a file you received into a folder in your User collection. You can open a Finder or Explorer window in your User collection by right-clicking (command-clicking on Mac) on the User collection name or image in the collection list and selecting Show in Finder (Mac) or Show in Explorer (Windows) from the menu (this is not possible on the special All Patches collection).

The User collection is not stored in the same location as the Factory and sound pack collections. Since the latter are stored in a read-only area of your computer, it may not be possible to rename, move or add new patches in those collections.

On disk, the patch categories are the first level of folders under a collection. The patch browser only displays patches stored directly in a collection’s folder, or in one of its sub-folders. Deeper folder hierarchies are not supported. For example, in the following hierarchy that represents the User collection, the patch Hidden Bass under Sub-Folder would not be visible:

  • User
    • Basses visible collection
      • Deep Bass visible patch
      • Electro Bass visible patch
      • Sub-Folder not visible
        • Hidden Bass not visible

You can use this to your advantage to hide unfinished patches that you don’t want to see in the browser but that you may wish to revisit later.

Module Browser

Modular synthesis patches are made of interconnected modules: tone generators, filters, modulations sources, etc. These modules are found in the module browser.

Modules are organized in these categories:

  • Audio Generators These modules produce audio-rate signals. A patch will usually contain at least one audio generator to produce sound. This category contains voltage controlled oscillators (VCOs), noise generators and pulse generators.
  • Clocks & Sequencers Sequencers let musicians create musical sequences, beats, arpeggios or complex CV patterns that play at a rate defined by a clock signal. Clock modules can provide these clock signals.
  • CV Generators The purpose of control voltage (CV) generators is, as their name suggests, to generate voltages that will control other modules through their modulation inputs. This is where you will find envelope generators and low frequency oscillators (LFOs).
  • Filters Filter modules will shape a signal by filtering-out some frequencies. They may also color a sound by adding emphasis to some frequencies, and even add new harmonic content through saturation and audio-rate frequency modulation.
  • Maths This category offers modules that perform simple mathematical or logical operations on their input signals. They will generally be used to transform CV signals.
  • Mixers Mixers combine multiple signals together.
  • Shapers Shapers are modules that perform various waveshaping operations such as saturation, bit crushing or sample rate reduction on audio signals. While filters work in the frequency domain to modify a signal’s spectral content, shapers work in the time domain by applying mathematical formulas to alter the voltage of the signal.
  • Signal Processors Signal processors are modules that modify a signal in some useful way. For example, the Slew Limiter will limit the rate of change in a CV signal, the Delay will delay a signal by a given time, and the Inverter will invert the polarity of a signal. By itself, a signal processor will not do much, but judicious use of signal processors can add a new dimension to a patch.
  • VCAs This category contains voltage controlled amplifiers (VCA), which control the amplitude of a signal from the amplitude of another signal. VCAs are used to vary the output volume of a patch, but also to modulate the amplitude of CV signals, thereby creating complex modulations from simple sources.
  • Visualisers Visualisers are modules that provide visual feedback on the patch, either in the form of text (Patch Info) or graphical signal representation (Level).

For more information on how to add new modules to a patch, please refer to the Patching—Adding Modules section.

Effects Panel

All patches have two built-in effect sends: a Delay and a Reverb. Their settings can be adjusted in the effects panel.

At the bottom of this panel, a CPU meter shows the percentage of CPU time used by the patch.

Please be aware that modern CPUs sometimes automatically adjust their clock speed to preserve energy depending on the demands of the running software. This means that on some computers, a very simple patch may display a higher CPU usage percentage than a complex patch, because the CPU will run at a lower clock speed when the simple patch is loaded. Multiphonics patches are usually quite light on the CPU, so you should not need to worry too much about the CPU load.

Settings Panel

The Settings panel is only available when using Multiphonics CV‑2 in standalone or as an instrument plug-in in a DAW. It is not available when running as an effect plug-in.

Audio & MIDI Setup

This section is not available when using Multiphonics CV‑2 as a plug-in in a DAW.

The Setup button opens the Audio & MIDI Setup window, where you can choose your audio output and MIDI input devices. This is described in the Introduction—Audio and MIDI Configuration section.

MIDI Settings

The MIDI settings adjust the way that the Keyboard module responds to MIDI input.

When using Multiphonics CV‑2 in a DAW, these settings will be saved with your project so that each plug-in instance can have a different MIDI configuration.

Pitch Bend Range

Sets the maximum MIDI pitch bend range.

Mod 1 Source

Lets you choose which MIDI control change is mapped to the Mod 1 CV output on the Keyboard module.

Defaults to the modulation wheel (MIDI CC 1).

Mod 2 Source

Lets you choose which MIDI control change is mapped to the Mod 2 CV output on the Keyboard module.

Defaults to channel pressure (sometimes called monophonic aftertouch).

Master Tuning

Sets the frequency of the A above middle C.

The Reset (A=440) button resets the master tuning to the standard A=440 Hz tuning.

Save as Default

Saves the current MIDI settings to be used as default settings when loading new Multiphonics CV-2 plug-in instances.

Load Default

Restores the previously saved MIDI settings.

On-screen Keyboard

The On-screen Keyboard is only available when using Multiphonics CV‑2 in standalone or as an instrument plug-in in a DAW. It is not available when running as an effect plug-in.

The bottom panel provides an on-screen keyboard, which can be useful to trigger patches when no MIDI keyboard is available. The on-screen keyboard can be transposed with the Octave arrows.

  1. In Multiphonics, a preset is called a patch. This word comes from the modular world where it refers to how modules are connected to create a sound.  ↩︎

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