At one stage many years ago I had a Roland GR700 and would press hold on a note and just explore sounds with the Roland PG-200 that you could attach. However, all I had to record with was a tap deck, which I never properly saved. I recently bought a Korg Volca Modular, thinking that might be something of an entry point, but again like the PG-200, it feels like it has its limitations.
I recently came upon vcvrack.com and think that this might be my next point of exploration. I would love to build my own, as Chris Beckstrom has, just not quite sure about the time and space. (I knew I should have kept my reference monitors.)
One question, what are the trigger pads? I assume, like a Launchpad, they are linked to Ableton that allow you to trigger samples and/or midi tracks? Or are they triggering a module within the rack?