Disturbing hacks for Mutable Instruments modules


Warps Parasite

Warps Parasite is an alternative firmware for Warps. It adds the following features to the module:

Consequently, all features of the official firmware are left untouched and still accessible (with the exceptions mentioned below).

Download and install

Click on the button to download the latest stable version, ready to play to your module:

Download latest version (v1.01)

Once you downloaded the file, unzip it and follow the Firmware update procedure in the official manual. This firmware is entirely free, but it is the result of months of work; if want to support it, please consider donating, even a small amount, for the past and the upcoming efforts.


For full documentation, please see the user manual of Warps. I present hereafter only the features added/modified.

Mode-switching interface

Warps can be in 9 modes. The behavior of the stock firmware is preserved, it is the last of these modes.

Warning: Right after updating the module, you will be in a different mode than the one you are used to, and you might not recognize the sounds coming out. Please read on before calling for help.

To switch modes, hold the button and turn the big knob. Each of the icons on the panel corresponds to a function; the big knob's color reflects the selected mode. Release the button to enter this mode.

Note: There is no interpolation/crossfading/morphing between these modes. There is no CV control over mode selection.

In all modes, each CV input is added to the corresponding knob. Unless otherwise noted, the button and Aux outputs act as in the stock firmware (control the internal oscillator).

From left to right, the new modes are:

  1. Binaural Doppler panner:
    (see below)
  2. Wavefolder:
    • Big knob: amount of folds
    • Small knob: input bias (gives access to different and subtler timbres)
    • The button switches the internal oscillator; Aux outputs the mix or the internal oscillator (default behavior)
  3. Chebyschev waveshaper:
    (see below)
  4. Frequency shifter: (the stock firmware's easter egg)
    • Big knob frequency shift
    • Small knob: crossfade between up/down outputs
    • Tiny pots: feedback and dry/wet
    • Outputs: up and down
  5. Dual bit-mangler:
    • Big knob input bit-degradation amount.
    • Small knob: cross-modulation. Morphs between dry, bitwise AND and bitwise XOR.
    • The button switches the internal oscillator; Aux outputs the mix or the internal oscillator (default behavior)
    • Note: the Aux output is also affected by the bit degradation, so you can use this feature on the two channels, in stereo.
  6. Comparator with Chebyschev waveshaper:
    • Big knob morphs between 8 analog-like comparison functions, starting with the mix of both inputs.
    • Small knob: order of the Chebyschev waveshaper.
    • The button switches the internal oscillator; Aux outputs the mix or the internal oscillator (default behavior)
  7. Vocoder:
    • Big knob frequency warping
    • Small knob: release time
    • The button switches the internal oscillator; Aux outputs the mix or the internal oscillator (default behavior)
  8. Variable-rate delay:
    (see below)
  9. Meta-mode (the stock firmware's main function)
Here are quick functional demos of each modes:

... and a cheat sheet (thanks to erstlaub):

cheat sheet

... and a video demo (thanks to davidh):

... and another demoing some new features in v1.0 (thanks to SB-SIX):

Binaural Doppler panner mode

This mode recreates the physical effect of listening to a moving sound source, with two fixed, opposing ears separated by a few centimeters (which happens to be my situation).

        coordinates plane

First, the ear that is closer to the source will get the signal a bit before and a bit louder than the other ear; this is known as binaural effects and help the brain to locate a source. Secondly, the further the source is, the more time it will take to reach our ears: there will be a delay due to the speed of sound. Finally, if the source is getting closer, its apparent pitch will be higher; if it is getting farther, its pitch will be lower (think of the sound of an ambulance passing in front of you); this is known as the Doppler effect.

The two knobs determine the coordinates of the sound source with respect to the listening head:

This mode simulate these effects. It can also be used as a dual cross-fader, or a panner, or a simple delay, or a VCA... but it is not where it will shine.

The state of the button determines the size of the space: from a tiny space (LED unlit), where the Doppler effect and the delay and attenuation of distant sound is minimal, to a huge one (LED red).

Chebyschev waveshaper

A Chebyschev waveshaper shapes the signal with Chebyschev polynomials. It has the effect of shifting harmonics non-linearly by harmonics, and gives interesting timbres out of simple, harmonically poor ones.

Combined with the internal oscillator, this mode can provide a full synthesis voice with tones close to additive synthesis and wavefolding.

Variable-rate delay

This mode simulates classic effects that can be achieved with a tape loop. The delay is modelled after the following situation: a tape loop, moving at a definite speed, with two separate heads moveable along the loop: a read head and a write head. You have control over:

The state of the button determines the topology of the delay:



Version Date Changes
v1.01 2016-09-17
  • Delay mode:
    • fixed lockup bug
    • fixed "click" when Speed passed through zero (Algorithm at noon)
v1.0 2016-09-06
  • Delay mode:
    • complete rewrite with two distinct parameters: tape speed (big knob) and tape length (small knob)
    • separate dry/wet and feedback controls (tiny pots)
    • removed the built-in LFO
    • tweaked tape-hiss/distortion/filters in analog mode to sound more "realistic"
  • New dedicated Chebyschev waveshaper mode, replaces previous ring mod mode (see documentation)
  • Frequency shifter:
    • linear response of dry/wet and feedback mini-pots (was quadratic)
  • All modes:
    • less smoothing of levels CVs (snappier response)
    • increased the TZFM modulation index of the internal sine oscillator (when Int. Osc is green audio is fed to the first input)
v0.95 2016-01-31
  • merged upstream fix of a bug in the frequency shifter
  • tweaked the hiss simulation in the analog delay (more noise, less distortion)
v0.9 2016-01-31 Minor fixes and adjustments
v0.9beta1 2015-12-28 Initial version