Forum for all other samplers including Maschine, MVs, Akai S & Z series, Emu, Roland, Yamaha, Korg, Boss, Ensoniq... and even Beat Thang.
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By Airyck Tue Jan 29, 2013 8:23 pm
Hi all,

I received a free Roland MC-909 that didn't work about 6 months ago.

On and off I studied the schematics and measure circuits and over time sourced and replaced dead components all in all spent about $20 on parts, but now it's fully functional :smoker:

So 2 weeks until the 1.3 update drops, I think I'll spend a little time with this thing and get to know it and see if it's worth incorporating into the setup.


Anybody use one before?
Any tips/tricks/links/experiences you'd like to share?

Cheers,
~Airyck~
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By mr_debauch Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:55 pm
Airyck wrote:
Anybody use one before?
Any tips/tricks/links/experiences you'd like to share?

Cheers,
~Airyck~


no, but I always wanted one due to the sheer size of the thing. It seems fairly powerful too.
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By Ian Canefire Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:38 pm
I have one...they are great but have a few problems. Good timing...one bad midi flaw in the OS.
It helps me make songs quick.

Send me a message if you need any help. I just learned a month or tow ago on Roland clan that it has midi USB. Embarrassingly I was telling the dude it didn't and he tried it and sure enough it did. The manual said nothing about that. So you can sysex and do lots to your DAW.
I dig it but the MPC controls it in my setup.

Cheers,
Ian

PS you are a lucky dog to get it for free. biggup!
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By damien907 Wed Jan 30, 2013 1:11 am
thats dope! congrats man!

@ ian, ive never used one, but what midi flaw are you talking about?

or were you making a joke and i didnt get it? :oops:
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By mr_debauch Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:29 am
Yeah what flaw? And for some reason, I seem to remember hearing about screen issues or something of that nature...

It looks kind of fun to play around with though I must say...

what are your opinions about fx? If you have ever messed with an MV, do they compare or rank similarly?
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By Airyck Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:58 pm
Thanks for the feedback guys, and the info Ian, I'll look into that. MIDI over usb could be exactly what I need to incorporate it how I want into my setup.

I made a pattern last night on it. I'm not into most of the drums that come with it so I loaded some of my own and made my own Rhythm patch, much better.

I've also been making synth parts with it (it's a pretty good synth engine) running them through the FX which I also feel are of a very good quality. I then resample the synth part and chop it into pieces, play back that and record what I'm doing and getting some good results.

I'd have to say loading individual drums into a Rhythm set is a slow process but all in all there are some pretty creative things you can do with it. Also that Random knob is pretty cool for getting some variations on a synth sound quickly and then modifying it to fit my needs.

All in all it's a lot of fun so far and I think it will incorporate well with my Renaissance :smoker:
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By Airyck Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:01 pm
mr_debauch wrote:Yeah what flaw? And for some reason, I seem to remember hearing about screen issues or something of that nature...

It looks kind of fun to play around with though I must say...

what are your opinions about fx? If you have ever messed with an MV, do they compare or rank similarly?



The screen was one of the problems my MC-909 had.
It wasn't the actual screen though, a bunch of the contrast circuitry had burned out components, a DC to DC converter, a few resistors, a couple capacitors, and two transistors. Basically the entire circuit other than the potentiometer was blown :shock: .
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By Ian Canefire Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:33 pm
MC-909 midi flaw...Wikipedia Roland MC-909 you will see the other flaws as well at the bottom of the page. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roland_MC-909

There is a switch on the patch part screen (right corner) that can toggle between INT, EXT and BOTH. This relates to the control of external gear on that particular part (track).
Example: Let's say on part one you have a synth lead and you have a programmed sequence of midi data in the MC909 - so that the MC909 will play it's internal sound. Let's also say that the MC909 is connected via midi out to a sound module's(SM) midi in. As long as both machines are on the same midi channel then they can talk. (you all know this much I am sure)
If INT is displayed then that part 1 synth sequence should only play in the MC909 and not transmit to the SM's part 1. Conversely of EXT is displayed then the MC909 should not play it's synth sound but the SM should play sounds. If BOTH is displayed then both machines should play their respective sounds.
THIS DOES NOT WORK.
Now, the Roland Fantom S has the same sequencer engine in it but it is not as full featured. ( MC909 being a stand alone device can do more sequence tasks and has excellent timing. The Fantom S has sloppy timing and cannot be a dependable midi master device, I find) However the Fantom's toggle works (OFF, INT, MIDI, BOTH)

Cheers,
Ian
PS there is a work around - you can unplug the midi cable on your SM or go into your SM and switch it off. This is the reason why it is not as tight as the MPC4000 but it is close. Using the two devices together is a great combo because of the editing that can be done on the MC909. At the end of this video I made I show you what I just explained above _ fast forward to the last 2 minutes...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ga4A_3o8cFg
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By wudsiba Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:45 pm
Always wanted one of these. The TR style sequencing with all of the 16 pads in a single row just seems so intuitive. I could really see coming up with a lot of patterns quickly. Nice find.
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By mr_debauch Wed Jan 30, 2013 9:46 pm
ah terrible... for the midi issue... I guess yeah sequencing externally would be a solution... or using a different track and channel? does that work? Or is there no way because no matter what internal sounds play?

Also, it has a good amount of sample time... I suppose if the thing you are trying to sequence is small enough it could be sampled.
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By Ill-Green Thu Jan 31, 2013 1:01 am
RZA had one, I remember him talking about the fader and how it slows and speeds samples in realtime. I always wanted one myself but those things were beyond my budget at the time like $1500 dollars. That was Roland's flagship sampler too before the MV. I still want one but I'm so spoiled by the MV it would just be a dust collector.
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By Airyck Fri Feb 01, 2013 6:47 pm
Thanks for all the info Ian! :smoker:

I don't see that MIDI flaw being a problem because I'll sequence other external gear with my MPC Renaissance. So far I'm very impressed with what I've been getting out of the MC-909, I think it's here to stay.

Nice collection of gear Ian! Those are all synths I would own myself. How do you like the AN200? I found a Yamaha EX5 in pieces at a recycling place here in Colorado. I spent some time putting it back together and repairing it and I have it in my collection now. I noticed that the AN synthesis sounds amazing but the Polyphony is limited on the EX5. I'm probably going to keep my eye out for a non working AN200 to repair :)

This is how I get most of my gear, I buy broken stuff or get it free and just repair it :smoker:

I'm also modding a bunch of 80's analog/digital hybrids and turning them into full blown Analog synths (e.g. Korg Poly 800 and 61)
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By Airyck Fri Feb 01, 2013 6:51 pm
Ill-Green wrote:RZA had one, I remember him talking about the fader and how it slows and speeds samples in realtime. I always wanted one myself but those things were beyond my budget at the time like $1500 dollars. That was Roland's flagship sampler too before the MV. I still want one but I'm so spoiled by the MV it would just be a dust collector.


I remember playing with the MC-909 when it came out at a store and dreaming of having it but I was young and there was no way I could afford one, so it's kind of cool getting to have one now after all these years.
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By Ian Canefire Fri Feb 01, 2013 7:19 pm
The MC909 is definitely quality. I use it every time I go into my studio. The beauty of it is all of the knobs and those wonderful drum sequences. Pretty much every genre's drum sequence is present. Making dance music is especially easy.
The MC909 midi connected to my moog minitaur could rock a party for hours.

Re: Yamaha AN200
It doesn't have enough outputs for all the sounds in it. It was marketed as the analog sounding digital synth (I am not impressed). I use it for what it is every once in a while I tweak it for a pulsating sound. It has a cool feature.. that allows you to mix different synth voices. All the way left is one, all the way right is another and 12 o'clock is both. The value in it is the plg card. As you probably know you can open it up and take that card out and put in one of yamaha's other cards and thus give it another sound. It has 4 tracks to it. One synth and three drum. All midi assignable. It has some great drum patterns in it the stock drum sounds I would only layer and never attempt to use by themselves. Once connected to a computer you can draw your wave form and tweak hidden parameters. Something I hardly do. In short, save your money and buy the yamaha motif rack ES instead they can be had for $350 -$400 used. Only buy this AN200 if you can get it for less than $200.

Cheers,
Ian

PS you are a wise person to buy used and fix up. I wish I could do the fixing myself. If I could solder and understand the physics better I would make my own tube preamp and put more outputs and better converters in my machines.
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By Airyck Fri Feb 01, 2013 10:16 pm
:oops: I confused the AN200 with the AN1x :lol:

I saw the AN and thats what it made me think of. I was actually thinking about getting an AN1X, but thank you for the input on the AN200; I'm sure I'll run into one at some point.

I do buy some new stuff occasionally (MPC Renaissance, iMAC, etc..) but for the most part it's all used/broken. I just find that this helps me to really try out a lot of different gear and if I don't like it I can sell it. I have a roland XP-80 that I also got for free and it's working now but I feel like it might be redundant with the MC-909 now, so I'll probably sell it.

FYI I do produce dance music so I guess the MC-909 is a good choice for me :)
A lot of those groove/velocity templates seem interesting as well. I may play with some of those for a bit tonight.

Thanks again and if you ever have any issues with your equipment feel free to hit me up and I'll try and give you some good advice on how to troubleshoot it or source parts if you need (I'm pretty good at finding replacements for things that don't exist anymore) ;)

Also when I get some of my mods done (I don't know when) I'll post them up on this forum.

Cheers,
~Airyck~