Let your modular signals “wrestle” with CASPERxBASTL’s Aikido quad VCA mixer

“Your modular system can become an arena where anything is possible and small signals get to wrestle over big ones”

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Bastl Instruments and Peter Edwards, AKA Casper Electronics, have teamed up as CASPERxBASTL to launch a new performance-ready eurorack VCA mixer module called Aikido.

The module is a four-channel VCA mixer with integrated envelope followers that make for flexible compression/expansion. According to the brand, the unit can act as the “main mixing hub” for a full modular setup, offering unique ways of combining input signals from other modules.

Translated from Japanese, the word ‘Aikido’ means “the way of unifying (with) life energy,” or “the way of harmonious spirit.” Usually the name of a modern Japanese martial art, Aikido is used by CASPTERxBASTL to refer to the unification of input signals in a modular rig.

As put by Bastl: “As a martial art, Aikido teaches you how to harness the power of your opponent and use it to your advantage. With the help of the Aikido module, your modular system can become an arena where anything is possible and small signals get to wrestle over big ones.”

You can combine channels on the module through flexible submix routing and two styles of integrated envelope followers. Instant sidechain compression, expansion, and rapid routing experimentation can also be applied thanks to some clever normalisation.


Aikido also has clickless mute switches and level faders which provide more instantaneous options for live performance. There also attenuverters – a special version of an attenuator that can also invert the polarity of the signal or voltage going through it – which, Bastl says, make each channel “powerful and flexible”.

Also, the main mix output comes with its own VCA outputs with patch-programmable cascading mix routing. There also options to switch between three response curves on the sidechain envelope follower, and you can set the Spectral Follower to affect the lows, mid and bass frequencies individually.

Aikido by CASPERxBASTL is now available to buy for €245. Find out more information at shop.bastl-instruments.com.


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