Back To Blog

A New Iteration

A New Iteration

Recently, we made the sad decision to end-of-life some of our favorite modules: Basimilus Iteritas Alter, Cursus Iteritas, Manis Iteritas, and Ataraxic Iteritas. We wrote a separate post about the reasons why, but the tl;dr version is that the company that makes the CPU that those products went from not sending us orders to simply telling us that the part was discontinued. We had no choice in the matter.

We were really sad about the turn of events, but we were simply not prepared for the incredible outpouring of support and love for these products. People commented, made beautiful videos, sent us lovely messages, talked to us about it at events…it meant a lot.

And so it became clear to us that we needed to do something about it.

Introducing Alia…or return of the Iteritas, of sorts

This week, we announce Alia. 

Like Versio and Legio, Alia is a platform, in this case an oscillator platform. That means that if you buy Basimilus Iteritas Alter, but want to try Manis Iteritas, now you can. The previous Iteritas hardware required custom hardware and some not-so-customer-friendly infrastructure to change firmware, so this was not really an option. We’re excited to bring this flexibility to your fingertips.

In future posts we’ll take a deep dive into the three firmwares available at launch (Manis Iteritas Alia, Debel Iteritas Alia, and Basimilus Iteritas Alia), but you can learn more about them at the World of Alia page here. We recommend taking a look at Debel -- we had more fun than should be allowed with that one. Today we’ll explore the capabilities and ins and outs of the platform. 

Alia: a familiar look, a whole new module

Basimilus Iteritas Alia, Manis Iteritas Alia, and Debel Iteritas Alia

Alia’s layout should look familiar if you’ve ever used Basimilus Iteritas or Manis Iteritas. We kept the core features and a similar layout but added some fun stuff.

The envelope output was something we added near the end of hardware design, and we found it was quite fun to patch with: modulating an external filter or ducking sounds out of the way of a kick drum is easier than ever. 

For a long time, we’ve wanted to put a pitch encoder on Basimilus, too. Encoder tuning was something that we developed after the original BIA came out, and we found that it was a big help for tuning precisely. The encoder was already a feature of the Manis, but now it’s easier than ever to tune your BIA kicks. 

On the technical side, we brought the autocalibration technology from Legio over to the Alia platform. This means that pitch CV calibration is as simple as powering up the module: no trimmers to adjust on the back, no precision CV sources needed – it just works. The pitch CV range has been shifted to -2V to +5V as well: this means broader compatibility with a wider range of CV sources. 

Buy a module, save a pangolin

Back in 2017 when we launched Manis Iteritas, we partnered with A portion of the proceeds of every Manis Iteritas module and plugin sold has gone to pangolin conservation (over $10000 in donations!).

With Alia, this tradition continues: a percentage of the proceeds from every Manis Iteritas Alia still supports pangolins. But if you really want a different module as your base hardware, don’t despair. We are 1% for the Planet members, so at least 1% of our gross revenue goes to environmental conservation. Even if it’s not a pangolin, rest assured, purchase of any Noise Engineering module still funds animal and environmental conservation.

Similarities and differences from old

We spent a lot of time (like, a lot of time) making sure that the new Basimilus and Manis sounded as close to the old as possible. It was a surprising challenge; recreating sounds is often more difficult than creating a fun algorithm from scratch. The processor itself (or at least some of the things it enabled us to do that were a bit specific to it) was a big part of the sound and so Stephen spent a lot of time rewriting code. 

We had to spend longer on the BIA and MI firmwares than the new Debel. In the end, they’re nearly identical to our ears; you may find a few spots where there are slight differences in timbre, but booming kicks, industrial stabs, and all of the wonderful and out-there sounds of the originals are still there.  

Basimilus Iteritas Alia development started with a Daisy processor jumpered to an original BIA


When we launched the Versio platform, we had a lot of folks ask about the option of swappable panels. We offer replacement aluminum panels of course, but these are pricey and you don’t want to have to completely take your module apart every time you change a firmware. Something had to be done. We worked with our friends at Winterbloom for a while on some incredible, hot-swappable overlays. When they needed to move on from the project, our pal Meghan at Null Modular took up the concept. It’s great to have such smart and incredible friends.

Alas, overlays are a weird product, hard to make, hard to keep in stock. Eventually Meghan couldn’t find a cost effective way to make them either and we have had to once again find another method.

With the launch of Alia, we’re moving to PCB overlays. We’re still in the prototyping phase, so it will be a few weeks before they are ready. (A massive shout out once more to Winterbloom for their assistance with file prep for this process. Seriously, do you even know how smart Stargirl Flowers, who runs that shop, is? She makes some cool stuff, yall, including tools that helped us in this process, in addition to directly assisting us. Go support her.) 

We have a bunch of the acrylic overlays available for Versio and Legio still, but those will soon shift to PCB as well. We don’t have a silver option for this material, so we’re trying some things out, but if you’re looking for silver, grab those while they last. Watch this space for updates.


The Alia platform solves a lot of the things we didn’t like about the old version of the module, including the ability to try different firmwares. This was simply not an option when we developed the original PCB based on the parts that were available at that time. 

We are also excited to be able to bring this version to you at a slightly lower pricepoint than the old Iteritas modules were, mainly due to the new parts we are able to use.

It’s a Noise Engineering platform module, so by now you’re familiar with the drill: buy one module, get everything in the series. Right now, buy one, you can swap between three different firmwares (yes, there will be more!) by connecting to the Noise Engineering Customer Portal. We even include a handy USB cable for you. 

What about the other Iteritas? 

At launch, the Basimilus, Manis, and new Debel firmwares are available. We haven’t forgotten about Ataraxic and Cursus, though – they’re coming as soon as we can get them done, and we have some new ideas for the platform cooking, too. 

Will it Versio? That is, Can’t I just put this firmware on my Versio?

This one surprised us, but when we launched Legio, immediately people started trying Versio firmwares on it and vice virga (see what we did there?). So let’s just address this one.

The firmwares are not compatible with the opposite hardwares. Alia is an oscillator platform with an external DAC (this DAC is part and parcel of the Iteritas sound).  While they both run on the Daisy Seed, Alia uses a version that does not have the external memory installed. In short, Versio lacks the stuff that Alia needs to make sounds, and Alia lacks the memory that Versio needs. In addition, the circuitry is different. There’s no pitch CV input (which needs calibration circuitry to track properly), and there’s no audio input on Alia, so sadly, this will be a non-starter.

Never Miss a Beat

Get first dibs on discounts, presales, and all NE news.

Your email address will never be shared, sold, or used for nefarious purposes.

I'm interested in news about: