A function generator is a module that produces control voltages or audio signals with specific characteristics. Function generators can generate a wide range of waveforms, such as sine waves, square waves, sawtooth waves, and more complex waveforms, depending on the module’s capabilities.
Function generators typically have at least two outputs: a unipolar output that produces signals between 0 and +5V, and a bipolar output that produces signals between -5V and +5V. These outputs can be used to control various parameters of a modular synthesizer, such as the pitch of an oscillator, the cutoff frequency of a filter, or the amplitude of an envelope.
Function generators are capable of generating a variety of signal types, including:
- Envelopes: Function generators can be used to generate simple or complex envelope shapes that control the amplitude of a sound over time. These envelopes can be triggered by a gate signal and can be shaped to create a variety of effects, such as percussive sounds, swelling pads, and more.
- LFOs: Function generators can be used to generate low-frequency oscillations (LFOs) that can be used to modulate various parameters of a modular synthesizer, such as the pitch, filter cutoff, or waveform shape. LFOs can be used to create subtle or complex modulation effects, such as vibrato, tremolo, and phasing.
- Random signals: Function generators can be used to generate random signals that can be used for various purposes, such as creating sample and hold effects or adding randomness to a sequence.