It’s called the Circuit-Bent Digital Waveguide™ 扰动数字波导. Or the DU™ DU-KRPLS. And straight out of the “that’s not a bug, it’s a feature” files, it’s got intentionally wrong code in it. But that’s a good thing.

DU-KRPLS from detroit underground on Vimeo.

The new Eurorack module is a collaboration between smart, weirdo label Detroit Underground and Beijing’s underground musician/hacker menqimusic.

Meng Qi is a story himself, an electronic music artist from China whose circuit creations and Euro line manage to be subversive and elegant at once. His work extends to every angle on the medium, from teaching to programming to design to electronic music, which has let him to lead digital art and workshops around China and internationally.

And this might be the nicest creation he’s produced yet.

Okay, so it’s not entirely fair to fixate on that “broken” code (though it does sound glitchy and wonderful). The module in fact has two modes.

In circuit bent mode, the code ‘error’ can make “micro movements and glitches.”

There’s also a non-“bent” traditional Karplus sound – that’s the classic way of producing a digital model of a plucked instrument, aka Karplus-Strong string synthesis.

And in a nod to its home country, you can power it up to a D major pentatonic tuning, in case you want to emulate a zither. So apart from these wild noise-y things, you could produce something far more delicate … it’s really up to you.

A firmware update also offers tighter timing and crispier sound, which sounds delicious.

We’ll have to do a separate interview with Meng Qi. But this module goes on my shortlist of things I’d want in the vast landscape of Eurorack.

Now, maybe Eurorack modules are the future of record labels.


  • that sounded super cool and it all but forced me into an impulse buy (135 is pretty reasonable)

    • some dev

      It got me… I saw that $135 price tag and said “eff it” 😉

      I’ve wanted a Karplus Strong module for a while and this seems perfect.

      Thanks for the heads up on this Peter 🙂

      • some dev

        I’m guessing this thing is 8 hp right? I guess I’ll find out soon enough.

        Also, what is this trend with picturing modules nestled among plants? It’s aesthetically pleasing, but maybe you could sell more modules by propping them up against puppies or ducklings.

  • Raymond Scottwalker

    I have an MQ Karp, it’s ridiculous amounts of fun.

    Edit – Very cheap as well!

  • foljs

    What’s the deal here? There have been 3-4 more teasers, more info (e.g. 12 voice polyphonic) and even a real world interview with its creators for the Behringer synth, and not a word here.

    Whereas we’ve seen post after post for ho-hum synths until they were unveiled (e.g. 3 posts for the Yamaha Reface stuff).

    Don’t want to go into any conspiracy theory, but how about some actual coverage?

    • some dev

      They did a 12 minute video with no sound of the synth… what’s to cover? Until Behringer actually shows exactly what that thing is I don’t think it’s very interesting. And it’s DCOs which means it probably sounds as “analog” as a Dave Smith synth… zzz.

      Besides, CDM isn’t MusicRadar or some other general music news site. I come here to learn about things that are a bit under the radar… like this little lovely DU-KRPLS module 😉

      Of all the sites to try and find bias in this isn’t it man. Peter is just posting stuff that he finds interesting. If he doesn’t cover this or that it’s probably just a limitation of being just one guy.

      • foljs

        > And it’s DCOs which means it probably sounds as “analog” as a Dave Smith synth… zzz.

        In an era when top of the line VST plugins (Monarch, Diva, etc) sound every bit as analog as a Moog in Keith Emerson’s vault despite the totally digital pipeline, I find the idea that a DCO will prevent a synth (or Dave Smith’s) from sounding analogue cargo-cultish — akin to those paying $1000 for “hi-fi cables” that they couldn’t tell from fence wire in a A/B test.

    • Jaybeeg

      CDM wrote about the upcoming Behringer synth on July 20th. I suspect Peter is waiting for a formal release with full specs, price and release date before revisiting it. Or perhaps there’s a hands-on review in the wings, too, like CDM did with the Korg MS-20.

      I get annoyed with some sites that just publish a string of press releases from companies without adding meaningful content in the form of hands-on impressions or careful analysis of the product. That’s not respectful of their readers’ time.

  • itchy

    sounds of poop to me

    • some dev

      “Sounds of Poop”… my next album name. Might put a “The” in there to sound more pretentious.

      • foljs

        Top of the poops!

      • No. Call it Poopsounds and it will be both pretentious and referential to an album that many people are artistically pretentious about.