Digital8 Expander User Manual

Table of contents

  1. Overview
  2. Front panel layout
  3. Functional description
  4. Cascading
  5. Pin mapping on the backside
  6. Technical details
  7. Installation
  8. More information
  9. Warranty


Congratulations to the purchase of Digital8 Expander and welcome to the world of manikk!

manikk Otto Digital8 is an optional expander module for use together with some other manikk modules. It has pins on the backside with a SPI interface for communication with the master module that it expands. The 8 jacks gives 8 digital outputs.

It also has pins on the backside for the output (tip) signals and also for the 8 break signals that get the output signal when no plug is inserted in the jack.

The active expander gives additional features and outputs to the master module.

Read the manual for the master module carefully, to see if that module supports the expander or not.

Some master modules may have support for two or more expanders as well. In this case they are connected in a cascading chain. The first expander receives the data at the MOSI-pin, and then forwards the bits thru to the cascading out pin to the next expander in the chain.

The Digital8 Expander has the numbers 1 to 8 printed for the 8 jacks on the frontpanel.

See here how to attach stickers to the front.

You can also use this module for your own DIY-projects where you have a SPI interface that can control this module.

See also the ADSR Expander module. The ADSR Expander is a nearly identical to the digital8 expander. It has a frontpanel designed for the ADSR Expander functions. Some versions of it may also have fewer SPI pins, because it is not designed for cascading multiple expanders in a chain.

Pins from top to bottom

Pin Name Description
1-16 J1-J8 & GND Tip signals and their GND pins
17-32 B1-B8 & GND Break signals and their GND pins
33 +5V 5V power to this expander
34 +5V 5V power to the next expander in the chain
35 SS SPI Select signal to this expander
36 SS SPI Select signal to the next expander in the chain
37 SC SPI Clock signal (SCK) to this expander
38 SC SPI Clock signal (SCK) to the next expander in the chain
39 M SPI Data in (MOSI) to this expander
40 X SPI Cascading data out to the next expander in the chain

When connecting the expanders, you can use any of the pins marked GND as the GND-pins also for the SPI connections.

See here how to connect the digital8 expander to the master module.

Package Contents

  • 1 Module
  • 5 Dupont cables
  • 2 Screws
  • 1 Sticker sheet
  • Plastic zip bag

Click here to go to the product page.

Front panel layout

Functional description

The Digital8 Expander is an optional expander module that expands the functionality of some of the other manikk modules.
The ADSR Expander is identical to the Digital8, except that it has its own frontpanel.

The module that controls the Digital8 Expander is here called the master module.

It gives 8 additional digital outputs.

The function and meaning for each digital output jack depends on the master module. Read the manual for the master module for details.

The module has a SPI interface and needs to be connected to the master module by female-to-female dupont cables.

Power and GND are also taken from the host/master module by two dupont cables.

This module should therefore not be connected to the Eurorack power supply by itself.

The frontpanel has the number 1 to 8 printed for the jacks. (The ADSR expander has other labels).

Multiple Digital8 expanders can be cascade connected if the master module supports this.


Two or more active expanders can be cascaded.

The master module feeds data to the module to the MOSI in pin.

When chaining or cascading modules you need to connect the MOSI cascade out to the MOSI in on the next Digital8 Expander down the chain.

All the other signals, GND, +5V, SS and SCK should be connected in parallell for all the expanders. Only the MOSI in and MOSI cascade out are connected in serial chain.

Read the manual for the master module to see how many Digital8 Expanders it can support. Normally only one.

Pin mapping on the backside

There exists different versions of the digital expander:

Versions up to 1.2

The first version of the Digital8 Expander has a single line pinstrip with 38 pins.
Pins 1-16 are the jack signals and a GND for each signal.
Pins 17-32 are the break signals and their GND pins. When no plug is inserted in the jack, that signal is breached out to this break-pins.
Pins 33-38 are the SPI interface pins, that you connect to the master module.

This version was mainly created for use when only one expander was supported.

If you want to cascade/chain multiple modules in series with this version, you have to create your own special cables for sharing the 5V, SS and SCK pins from one expander to the next down the cascading line.

Pin Function
33 GND
34 +5V
35 MOSI in
36 MOSI cascade out
37 SS
38 SCK

Version 1.3

This version has more pins in the bottom SPI interface.
The extra added pins are doubles for 5V, SS and SCK. This makes it easy to cascade multiple expanders.

You can use any of the GND-pins as GND-pins for the SPI interface.

Pin Function
33 +5V
34 +5V
35 SS
36 SS
37 SCK
38 SCK
39 MOSI in
40 MOSI cascade out

Technical details


Width: 2 HP
Depth: 21 mm

Current consumption

+5V: 2 mA (taken from the master module)



If you have purchased a module, you need to install it in your eurorack case. Use the supplied screws to mount it in your rack.

An expander or add-on needs to be attached to the back of a master module via pin-strips. Either directly or via dupont-cables.

Power supply

There are three types of power requirements for manikk products:

  • Completely passive products requires no power.
  • Normal eurorack modules requires +12V and -12V from your eurorack system. Connect with IDE ribbon cable.
  • Some kits and add-ons requires only +5V from a master module. Connect directly or with dupont-cables.


  • Make sure to use approved and good power supply in your system.
  • Always turn off the power to your system when installing or uninstalling modules.
  • Make sure to get the polarization correct when connecting cables.
  • When you connect an IDE flat ribbon cable to the eurorack power distribution, the negative -12V is normally indicated with text on the PCB and with a red stripe on the cable.

More information

You can find the latest information on the website

  • Latest version of this manual
  • Additional information
  • Videos
  • FAQ
  • Other modules and kits


This device has a one (1) year limited warranty starting from the first purchase date.

The warranty covers malfunctions in the device.

The warranty does not cover bad usage, external damage or other abnormal usage.

The device is designed to work in a Eurorack synthesizer system. Other uses are not covered by the warranty.

If you have to use this warranty you need to do the following:

  1. Check that the date is still in the warranty-time of 1 year from the date of purchase.
  2. Contact the seller where you purchased the device.
  3. Send the malfunctioning device to the address given by the seller. You have to pay for this freight yourself. Very important that you attach your return-address to the device, so we know where to return the repaired device.
  4. Manikk will repair or replace the device if the problem is covered by the warranty. We will send the repaired device back to you.