Alexander – Syntax Error
The Syntax Error takes your tones back to the dialup era, when video games were measured by their bits and telephones were wired to your wall. Inside, the primitive sounds of microchips await. It's time to blow the dust out of your cartridges and plug in your controllers. Set your modem for 14,400 baud and let the games begin.
Sample (Bonus): Adjusts the sampling rate of the audio computer system. Sampling rate is minimum / most degradation with this knob clockwise. Hold the select button and turn this knob to set the Bonus parameter, which controls a different function in each mode.
Code: Controls a different parameter in each mode. In Stretch mode, this knob controls the sample clock direction and speed. In Cube mode, this controls the gain of the distortion. And in Ring mode, it adjusts the speed of the modulation sample-and-hold.
Mix (Volume): Controls the amount of effected signal. Turn fully clockwise to "kill" the dry signal. Hold the select button and turn this knob to set the Volume of both wet and dry signals.
Tweak: Controls a different parameter in each mode. In Stretch mode, this knob controls the length of the sample buffer. In Cube mode, this controls the cutoff frequency of the low-pass filter. In Ring mode, this sets the depth of the sample and hold filter modulation.
Stretch: This one will really mess with your drummer's head. We sample the incoming audio and stick it in a buffer, then play it back. Pretty standard, right? Wrong. Turn the Tweak knob to set the length of the buffer, then set the Code knob to adjust the sample playback clock. The clock speed adjusts from +1 (normal speed) to -1 (reverse playback!) Use the Bonus control to change the feedback into the delay line for trippy echo tones.
The newest firmware revision for the Syntax Error adds "hyperspeed" playback in Stretch Mode - just turn the Tweak knob full up and go nuts.
Hint: Set the Code knob near noon to completely break everything.
Cube: This is probably the most normal sounding thing in here. The Code knob controls the gain and mix on a cubic distortion algorithm. Here's how we do it: (abs(INPUT^3))^3. It sounds great, if you like math. Every distortion circuit (or program!) needs a tone control so we added a resonant low-pass filter. The tone filter is bypassable, just turn the knob fully counter-clockwise. The Bonus parameter controls the resonance of the filter.
Ring: This mode combines a ring modulator with a sample and hold LFO. Code controls the speed of the sample and hold, while Tweak controls its depth. Set Code to minimum to disable the LFO for a "normal" ring modulator (is that a thing?) The Bonus parameter controls the EQ of the modulated signal.
Freq: Shifts the frequencies of the input signal by a fixed amount. This one will change the pitch of incoming audio but unlike a traditional pitch shifter it doesn't maintain the intervals between the notes you play into it. The Code knob adjusts the amount of frequency shift and the Tweak knob controls the amount of signal that gets fed back into the shifter. Want more options? Use the Bonus knob to change the time delay of the feedback, for comb filtering and flanging textures. This mode ranges from beautiful bubbles to gargling nightmares, and don't forget you can add in the crush effects from the Sample knob to grunge things up!