Alan Townsend, head of product demonstration and tuition for Roland UK, tackles some of the many technical enquiries from the Roland mailbag.
I am proud owner of a Roland Jupiter 6 synthesizer with which I am very pleased.
Although I have had some experience of basic synthesizers, there are however some aspects of the JP-6 such as the use of cross modulation and sychronization that I am unfamiliar with.
As it's obviously a very comprehensive instrument and I would like to make the most of it, perhaps you could explain these techniques and let me have any information on MIDI products suitable for use with the JP-6.
Yours sincerely Julian Bishop
Cross modulation is a frequency modulation or pitch change similar to producing vibrato with a low frequency oscillator. In cross modulation however the modulating sound wave is at an audio frequency and produces unusual harmonics called sidebands which give a metallic or clangorous effect similar to that produced by a ring modulator.
When phase synchronisation is used the frequency of 1 oscillator is locked into the same frequency as another. This means that if you try to change the pitch of the first oscillator it will produce some unusual looking sound waves giving emphasized harmonics that are a good phasing effect for wailing solo sounds.
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Thanks very much for sending me the details I sent for about various synths, amps etc., etc. I have, I think, decided to buy the JX-3P preset/programmable/polyphonic synth. The MIDI interface ability is also useful to me.
Before I rush into buying the JX-3P, however, I would be grateful if you could answer a few of the questions I have.
1. Is it possible to connect and synchronise the JX-3P to the TR-606 Drumatix, the TR-808 rhythm composer, the TB-303 Bass Line, and the MC-202 MicroComposer?
2. The JX-3P is described as "6-voice polyphonic synthesizer". Does this mean that up to six notes can be depressed at one time?
3. There is a socket on the rear of your JX-3P synth called "Sequencer Trigger In". Would a DP-2 pedal or FS-1 foot switch do for a trigger?
Ian B. Hunt
Dear Mr Hunt,
In answer to your questions:-
1. The JX3P sequencer can be synchronised directly to the TR606 or TR808 which can then act as an interface to the TB303 and MC202.
3. No, the trigger in needs a voltage from a TR606 etc.
The TR808 has been replaced by the TR909 and the TB303 and TR606 are included in your keyboard catalogue.
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At the recent Roland Roadshow I happened to catch your performance at Nottingham.
At the show the guitarist while demonstrating the GR-700 played lead while accompanying himself on synth by using the hold pedal and the patch pedals to change chords. Can you send me a list of the parameter settings to do this and the settings for the particular tunings?
The guitarist was Mark Wood and we've given his own comments on this issues of technique plus his set-up in this "Newslink".
It is possible to tune DCO2 independently of DCO1 and this is the basis of Mark Wood's transposing chord routine. The first step is to programme the desired sound which should have quite a high sustain level (parameter number 43) and using only DCO2 (parameter 18 turns completely to the right). This should have DCO2 tuned to concert pitch (parameter numbers 13 & 12). This sound is then written into patch one of a particular bank and then edited to transpose the pitch up by the desired interval using parameter numbers 13 & 12 and the new edited patch written into patch number 2 of that bank. The same procedure is then used to write the same sounds at different pitches into all the patch numbers of that bank. Mark played a chord on the guitar and pressed the hold pedal that sustained that sound indefinitely. He could then play over that accompaniment with the normal sound from the guitar. By keeping the hold pedal pressed with one foot he changes the patch number with the other foot which maintains the same sound but changes the tuning to a different chord and this is the effect that you heard on the Roadshow. Lessons in tap dancing are useful.
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