Why go modular if you’re not going to go nuts with modulation and signal? Bastl Instruments has reimagined their hex modulation CV Trinity with a new 6-channel beast for modulation, envelopes, and knob and trigger recording.

It’s a good time for modulation in modular. In place of the classic, somewhat static “here’s an LFO with some waveforms” approach, kids today get so much more. Now you can expect a compact module to handle multiple channels, more interesting waveshape, and recording and playback of knobs and shapes. I’ve spoken about my affection for the Dnipro KRAITS and its growing flexibility, for instance. Or have a look at the eminently configurable multichannel u-he CVilization. Now, we’ve got this.

Neo Trinity is the “spiritual successor” to Bastl Instruments’ 2016 CV Trinity, but it does a lot more. Each of the six available channels is configurable as an LFO, an envelope generator, or a CV knob recorder. And you can route still more assignable voltage into the module.

What’s critical about this is, the panel design, patch cable locations, and emphasis on knob recording all add up to an eminently performance-driven design.

I’m just going to paste the full specs, as … wow. All of this in 8HP? You get individual generators with a wide range of envelope times, modulation rates, internal and external clock, and various algorithms.

The panel design, patch cable locations, and emphasis on knob recording all add up to an eminently performance-driven design.

  • 6 independent channels of either LFO, ENV or CV
  • Indication per channel
  • Unipolar (0–5V) or bipolar (-5V to +5V) mode per channel
  • LFO shapes (with smoothing): saw, triangle (sine), ramp, pulse, random (smooth)
  • LFO range: 260s–180Hz
  • LFO sync (RATE knob sets divider)
  • ENV shapes: decay, attack, variable, pulse
  • ENV range: 1ms–8s
  • ENV retrigable or non-retrigable
  • ENV slew limiter mode (or AHR envelope with gates)
  • CV mode with quantization (ON/OFF, 8 scales, 2V or 5V range, smoothing)
  • All modes have automatable RATE knob and trigger sequences
  • Independent length of automation per channel (2–64 steps)
  • Clock-quantized or non-quantized trigger recording
  • Algorithmic trigger fill generator (6 algorithms with a knob parameter)
  • Mute per channel
  • Memory for 6 banks (all settings and automation)
  • Clock Reset input for automation (can be turned OFF – per channel)
  • CLK channel for setting tempo or for dividing/multiplying external clock
  • Internal CLK generator range: 35 BPM–420 BPM
  • CLK IN and CLK OUT connectors
  • META IN CV input – assignable independently to some or all channels
  • Channels E and F feature dedicated CV inputs
  • All CV inputs have adjustable function: positive/negative and attenuated RATE modulation, bipolar VCA at channel output, TRIG input (slew input), Sample & Hold (for triggered stepped waveforms)
  • Firmware updates via USB-C
  • User calibration of outputs and inputs (for quantizer precision)

And even better than a spec sheet, our good friend HRTL is here with a beautifully raw jam on the LFO. So yeah, “performance-friendly” is one thing to say, but let’s see it – and Leoš has us covered there. And damn, son. You say I can dodge bullets? I’m saying you won’t have to:

All I can tell you is that… you’re in danger of buying another module. Sorry.

It wasn’t really the modulator I was looking for. It was an answer to a question. The question of… wait, do I need to take out this module to fit another 8HP and … augh where is my hex screwdriver? Yeah, modular, sometimes you do wish you’d taken the blue pill.