Author Topic: DR_JONESS - GK Expander  (Read 7404 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline drjoness2001

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #25 on: July 11, 2013, 07:37:12 AM »
You are correct

1) The unit is powered by synth A.

2) The FX Loop feeds both synth A and B.

3) The GK S1/S2 switches are for synth B only

If you want to use the synth B Gk S1/S2 switches only, you still need something plugged into Synth A to power the buffer circuit, etc.

Offline mojo thorne

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #26 on: July 11, 2013, 08:24:45 AM »
Oh No!!  Guess that means I'll need to buy another piece of gear.  ;D

Offline drjoness2001

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #27 on: July 11, 2013, 10:35:23 PM »
I could probably engineer a work around, but it would not be a standard feature at this point.

Offline mojo thorne

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #28 on: July 12, 2013, 08:02:41 AM »
Hey... nothing wrong with a little nudge to get me to buy another piece of gear!

Can't wait until you have this ready!

Offline mmmmgtr

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #29 on: July 12, 2013, 08:46:51 AM »
Can the S1/S2 switches control Synth A instead?

If not, this box probably won't work for me...

:-(

Offline drjoness2001

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #30 on: July 12, 2013, 02:20:16 PM »
Can the S1/S2 switches control Synth A instead?

If not, this box probably won't work for me...

:-(

Well, I basically build things that people ask me to build. Vernon Reid wanted something like the RC-1324, so I made that for him. Bill Ruppert said he needed a clean buffered input for the GR-55, so I came up with the GK-Expander.

It is not like I have a separate research and development department, or marketing division.

Independently assignably GK switches never came up as an issue before.

I did get requests for the buffered input, and for the efx loop.

And I received emails with people asking about how to independently control the volume of two GK synths. In particular, the new GR-S and GR-D pedals, since they are limited with their control features.

Can you give me a better sense of how you will be using the UX-20? How will you be configuring your gear?

Of the UX-20 features, what is the most important to you? What feature can you do without?

In my tests, I went for the features that, particularly in a live situation, were the easiest to understand. It seemed that people were more likely to control multiple synths live, rather than in the studio, when parts can be multi tracked.

With the Roland US-20, you can send GK S1/S2 commands to either synth, but this depends paying attention to which LED is lit by the A/B select switch. If you don't keep track of the status, you can inadvertently send a program change to the wrong synth.

With the UX-20 then, the GK S1/S2 controls on the guitar always change synth A, and the GK S1/S2 on the pedal always change synth B.

This avoids potential confusion, but apparently the UX-20 would have no value to you without this change, so I must have overlooked some possible applications in the design process.

Let me know your thoughts, I really appreciate the input, my goal is to make gear that addresses the musical needs of GR players!

Thanks! Wayne

Offline mmmmgtr

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #31 on: July 15, 2013, 10:33:10 AM »
Let me first apologize if you interpreted any negativity toward you or your products. It was certainly NOT
intended. I feel fortunate to have people like you as part of this forum and the significant value you add to
ownership of vguitar products.

I have 2 use models that I'd like to support with minimal setup/equipment. They are both live performance models.
Here are some specifics/requirements that I have...

1) My "normal" rig is a GR55 only (Use Model #1)
2) My other rig adds a GR30 for more/better/extra synth sounds (Use Model #2)
3) I use GK-equipped guitars, but I want to be ale to use a non-GK-equipped
guitar for some songs that require only guitar/effect patches
4) I use S1/S2 to change banks for patch selection
5) I want to minimize the number of "pedals" on the floor. Adding separate footswitches
for each function is not desirable for my application. A single UX-20 would be ideal.

So for Use Model #2, the UX-20 works just fine. I can plug the GR55 in as the  "B" synth and use the
S1/S2 buttons to do bank changes, even when I am using a non-GK-equipped guitar. The GR30 supplies
power to the UX-20 as the "A" synth.

Use Model #1 is where my struggle comes in. If I am only using the GR55, I have to use the "A" synth
to supply power to the UX20. However, if I want to use a non-GK-equipped guitar, I then have no way
to do bank changes. This is why I would want one of 2 things....

A) S1/S2 switches assignable to "A" or "B" synth
  OR
B) Power the UX-20 from the "B" synth (or assignable)

Does this make sense? Am I maybe missing something?

As for features in the UX-20, I think I would probably use them all. I don't think I would need the FX loop, but
I do want the buffered guitar input, so that really doesn't change much.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2013, 10:39:58 AM by mmmmgtr »

Offline mojo thorne

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #32 on: July 16, 2013, 11:13:46 AM »
B) Power the UX-20 from the "B" synth (or assignable)


You made some pretty good points.  I think that this option is probably the most doable.  I think that the ability to assign the S1/S2 switches to synth A or B would be more difficult, and possibly inadvertent conflicts with the S1/S2 buttons on the GK guitar controlling. 

If the box could be powered by synth A or B, it seems that many more possibilities would be opened since you would have the flexibility to use to feed two synths or have the full functionality in a rig that only contained one synth (guitar input / effects loop... which is the element that I'm most interested in).


Offline mmmmgtr

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #33 on: July 16, 2013, 05:22:40 PM »
Thanks for the supportive words. I have looked at the S1/S2 schematics and I don't think that there would be conflicts between the switches in the UX and on the GK. It's basically a grounding switch with some de-bounce circuitry, pretty simple.

The more I think about it, I believe I would like to have BOTH the UX and GK switches controlling my GR55. I slave the GR30 to the GR55 anyway, so all needed instructions are sent to the GR30 through MIDI from the GR55. I use the GR55 as the master controller, so the only function of the US20 I have is to get the hex pickup info to the GR30. It would be nice to have the flexibility to change the banks from EITHER the GK or the UX. When I use the non-GK-equipped guitar, the UX switches would be the only option for changing banks.

The volume controls don't mean much to me. I haven't really needed any extra control beyond the GK volume. I use it as a master and that works fine for me. I can see how they would be useful in many cases, but if I had to choose to lose something to enable the function I need, the volume controls would be it. The mutes would be good to keep!

Offline mmmmgtr

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #34 on: July 17, 2013, 07:29:43 AM »
So talking through this helped....

I guess all I want is to jump the S1/S2 from the UX and the GK so they both control
both synth "A" and synth "B". I don't care if the LEDs don't light up. It would be easy
To add a small switch to make this selectable.

Anyone see any reason why this won't work?

Offline drjoness2001

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #35 on: July 18, 2013, 06:38:04 PM »
OK!

I have done some minor modifications to the circuit board, so you can swap the GK S1/S2, or combine them if you want to.

1) By using a 4PDT switch (available from Mouser electronics for about $6), you can swap the functions, so that the guitar would control synth B, and the internal GK S1/S2 commands would control synth A.

2) For more flexibility, you can use two, DPDT switches, and then individually assign the GK switches as a you like. So, you can have the guitar control both synth A and synth B at the same time, or you can have the internal GK S1/S2 controls both synths.

Currently, I'm leaving this feature off the pre-installed version. I just did the video clips, and upon review it seemed like a whole lot of talking and explaining, when most people may not need the standard UX-20 features. On the other hand, the UX-20 is available in a highly configurable DIY PC version for people like the members of this forum, who know what they want and are not afraid to heat up a soldering iron.

Pending a review of the revised layout, I'm planning on ordering a test run of a few boards next week, and should have them back in 10 days or so.

In the meantime:




Offline mojo thorne

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #36 on: July 22, 2013, 10:04:04 AM »
Hmmm... the more I think about it, the original GK Expander is really the ticket for my intended use.  I know that the intent was to replace it with the UX-20, but I'm very intrigued about the 7pin breakout feature.  There are other breakout boxes out there, but I haven't seen one that combined the possibility of the FX loop.  My current rig only uses the GR-55, so the UX-20 would have a lot of features that I don't really need. 

Is there any chance of a future run of GK Expanders?  I haven't seen any listed on ebay or any of the other usual sites, which speaks to their value to the players who have them.

Offline Elantric

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #37 on: July 22, 2013, 10:41:26 AM »
Quote
There are other breakout boxes out there, but I haven't seen one that combined the possibility of the FX loop.

http://www.rmcpickup.com/fanoutbox.html


The novel concept of using polyphonic pickup systems for Multi-Track/Multi-Channel Polyphonic (MTMCP) processing and recording/editing opens huge new horizons for guitarists and bassists.

In the past, only a handful of technically inclined virtuosos used it in their private state-of-the-art studios to create and maintain a technical edge over other players.

More recently, guitarists and bassists have been capable of superior MIDI access and polyphonic processing using our proprietary pickup and Active Electronics technologies in conjunction with state-of-the-art pitch-to-MIDI converters and Digital Signal Processors.

The advent of hard disk recording has made large numbers of data tracks much more affordable. Electric musicians have entered an era of desktop sound recording/editing in which new tools and techniques are required in order to support the flow of creativity.

We were able to refine this concept further, and designed a highly efficient patch bay and mix unit that makes MTMCP processing and recording easy and economical for everyone.

Using a FANOUT BOX for routing the signals, it is now possible to simultaneously record separate string signal information on separate tracks, and then play the recorded signals back into the guitar/synth, possibly after discrete string signal editing (to clean-up the tracks and optimize tracking performance).

The source information of Live guitar/synth and/or polyphonic processor (Roland VG-8) performances can now be properly recorded, documented, edited and downmixed with full access to processor parameter adjustments during mixdown.

It is now possible to adjust pitch-to-MIDI converter parameters to optimize the MIDI data produced by the recorded performance, instead of having to restrict the player's style within the possibilities of preset or default parameter settings in the converter or processor.

This concept is further potentialized by the ability of pitch-to-MIDI converters and high-end polyphonic processors to change certain parameter values & settings using MIDI commands.

A Master Class featuring performances by a virtuoso explaining his or her style can produce more specific information to be reviewed after the performance, for a deeper understanding of the artist's playing and ideas. Of course, self-study at all playing levels is significantly improved.

This empowers musicians, sound engineers, producers and teachers alike. It works to minimize production time & cost while maximizing the quality of the finished musical product.

FANOUT BOX

    Half-Rack format for efficient use of rack space
    Compatible with all current MIDI converters: Roland GR-09, GR-1, GI-10, GR-30, Yamaha G50, AXON NG-66, AXON AX-100 etc...
    Compatible with all current Polyphonic Processors: Roland VG-8, etc...
    Allows one instrumetn to drive 2 Guitar Synths or 1 Guitar Synth or MIDI Converter and 1 Polyphonic Processor simultaneously
    Provides 6 separate String Outputs (jacks 1-6) for connection to 6 separate inputs of sound mixing console or P.A. system
    Independent A & B custom mixes with independent String Select Switching for string splits & stereo sound
    Independent A & B loops for split or stereo effects
    Studio quality performance 90dB S/N typical
    Poly IN accepts standard 13-pin connection and is connected to ring connections of jacks #1-11 so they can be used as discrete outputs
    Poly OUT 1 jack connected to tips of jacks #1-11 so they can also be used as inputs (I/O port configuration)
    Poly OUT 2 jack parallel to Poly IN jack allows independent control of second Polyphonic Processor or Guitar Synth
    Remote D.C. Volume (Synth Vol.) jack
    Remote SW 1 and SW 2 jacks
    Access to pin 9 (spare line in Roland pinout) useful for additional custom remote control features

The FANOUT BOX is a polyphonic Patch Bay and Mix unit which allows the separate string signals of a polyphonic guitar or bass to be individually routed to an array of amplifiers, a sound console or a multi-track recording system. It also allows the separate recorded tracks to be played back into a pitch-to-MIDI converter or other Polyphonic processor. This provides the musician with full polyphonic control over recording, mixdown, processing and amplification. The unit also provides two Custom String Mixes (A & B) each one with its discrete Loop (send/return) connection for separate external processing, as well as a Mono Out for the main instrument signal.

The FANOUT BOX also allows a single polyphonic instrument to drive two different polyphonic units by using Poly-OUT 1 jack on the front panel, and Poly-OUT 2 jack on the back panel.

Because most of the connections in the unit are of the I/O (input/output) type, it is possible to use the FANOUT BOX to connect a microphone or other monophonic Live or recorded signal source to a guitar/synth or guitar-to-MIDI converter for single-note pitch detection applications.

The 2-pound half-rack unit is very easy to use. The User Manual is brief and easy to read. The possibilities are limitless . . .

Many of our customers are using the unit in conjunction with our line of pickups and polyphonic Active Electronics to connect separate string signals to different overdrive/delay processors and amplifiers for incredible acoustic and electric effects onstage and in the studio.

Offline mojo thorne

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #38 on: July 22, 2013, 10:46:21 AM »
Thanks.  I had looked at that before, but guess I missed the part about the effects loops. 

But, this one doesn't seem to allow you to put the normal pickup into the effects loop.  What I'd like to be able to do is (1) put some external effects in between my normal guitar pickup and the COSM amp models in the GR-55 without having to run three cables to/from my guitar, and (2) separate the signals from each individual string in order to record them individually.  I don't need to be able to do both at the same time, as #1 would be for live use and #2 only for recording.

It seems like the RMC box would be able to accomodate the second action, but not the first.  If I'm reading it correctly, it would only give the opportunity to put the signals from the hexaphonic pickup through the effect loops.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2013, 11:22:25 AM by mojo thorne »

Offline drjoness2001

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #39 on: July 24, 2013, 08:48:08 PM »
Thanks.  I had looked at that before, but guess I missed the part about the effects loops. 

But, this one doesn't seem to allow you to put the normal pickup into the effects loop.  What I'd like to be able to do is (1) put some external effects in between my normal guitar pickup and the COSM amp models in the GR-55 without having to run three cables to/from my guitar, and (2) separate the signals from each individual string in order to record them individually.  I don't need to be able to do both at the same time, as #1 would be for live use and #2 only for recording.

It seems like the RMC box would be able to accomodate the second action, but not the first.  If I'm reading it correctly, it would only give the opportunity to put the signals from the hexaphonic pickup through the effect loops.

Well, my understanding is that the RMC box does not have an efx loop similar to the GK-Expander, or UX-20.

The RMC box lets you create two (A and B) custom mixes of the raw, six string hex signals. Each one of these mixes has an effects loop (A and B).

The GK-Expander/UX-20 created an effects loop for the normal guitar signal, not the divided pickup signals.

Offline mojo thorne

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #40 on: July 25, 2013, 03:19:06 AM »
That's my understanding as well, so I will hold out for one of your boxes since that's really the biggest thing that I'm looking for, and I don't want to modify the GR-55 enclosure.  The GK Expander would suit my needs just fine, however, so if you ever get a hankerin' to build anymore of those, I would definitely be interested.

Offline drjoness2001

Re: DR_JONESS - GK Expander
« Reply #41 on: August 15, 2013, 12:47:25 PM »
I could probably engineer a work around, but it would not be a standard feature at this point.

I modified the PC board to allow you  to freely select what the GK S1/S2 switches control.



A diagram of the wiring, and a picture of the panel is attached.

For each output, Synthesizer A or B, there is a DPDT switch to select the GK S1/S2 source, either the Guitar or the UX-20. I opted for DPDT center-off switches, so you can disable the GK commands altogether if you want to.

Wayne


 

Blog