Noise Engineering

Get out of the box -- and back in

Noise Engineering is a Eurorack and 5U modular synthesizer manufacturer based in Los Angeles, California. 

So you want to repanel your module...

Alternate panels abound, be they purple panels, black panels, or custom-made. But once you have your new front panels, do you know how to install them?  We put together this simple photo tutorial to help make sure you don't damage your modules when installing new panels. Got a helpful tip to add? Tell me about it!

A few things you may need:

  • needlenose pliers or a jewelers bent needlenose plier
  • nut driver for 3/8", 5/16", and 9/32" (yes, Imperial. We apologize.)
  • Possibly  other nut driver sizes: 10 mm may be required for some modules
  • a knurled nut driver if you have older NE modules with the knurled jacknuts
  • phillips head or small star-bit screwdriver for certain modules (e.g., Confundo Funkitus)
  • tweezers (optional)

Step 1. Remove the knobs.

Use the needlenose pliers to gently pry off any knobs. BE GENTLE! Grip and lever the knob up WITHOUT pulling on the pot shaft (if anything, apply pressure down on the shaft). Walk the pliers up the shaft without pulling on the shaft -- this should be a lever motion without any pull.

Yanking knobs off by hand (or with pliers) can damage the pot/encoder or can break the knobs (pulling the knob cover off the d-shaft portion of the knob).  You don't want that.  That would be sad.


Step 2. Remove the nuts. 

Knurled nuts (shown here) will require a special tool, available in various places.  Remove the nuts around the switches and pots, too.  Be careful not to scratch the panel while you do this!

Some people use pliers for this. We do not recommend this: there is a high potential for scratching your panel.

Nut driver sizes:

switches: 9/32"

pots/encoders: 3/8"

jacknuts (new modules that no longer use knurled nuts): 5/16"

10 mm may be required for some modules

Step 3. Repanel

Gently slide the old panel off and the new panel into place. Try to lift straight off and put the new one straight on to minimize bumping movable parts like LEDs.

Step 3a. Troubleshooting (or, what happens when you're sure the new panel doesn't fit)

If you slide the new panel into place and it doesn't seem to agree with its new home, a couple of things may be in the way. LEDs, switches, and buttons sometimes are not perfectly in place. Is the panel getting stuck on one of those? If so, move the switch or use your tweezers to gently move the offending part into place.

If none of these are the problem, doublecheck all of the jacks.  Sometimes these are slightly bent. If so, gently bend back. 

If this still doesn't solve your problem contact us.

Step 4. Put it back together

Put the nuts back on the module.  We recommend finger tightening everything and using the nut drivers only if needed. Be careful not to scratch your new pride and joy while you tighten!  Knobs can be slipped right back on (or pushed.  Some will be a tight fit, but if they were on there once, they will go back on!).  And then you're done!

Noise Engineering is proudly located in Los Angeles, CA