Archive for the 'General' Category

Published by Nig on 03 Mar 2020

As it’s 303 Day….

I created a short three-step guide to programming the Behringer TD-3. Being a clone of the Roland TB-303, it has the same method of programming and this has long had a reputation of being dumb-foundingly complicated. In reality it’s not really that bad – first input the notes and then set the timing of those notes by specifying whether a whole note is played, whether a note is tied or if there is a rest. In addition each note can be transposed up or down an octave, have an accent or a slide.

The guide shows these stages as three separate shots of the keyboard and what buttons are needed to apply the relevant functions –

1. Notes – Press PITCH MODE and enter notes on the keyboard
2. Transposing – Press PITCH MODE again to reset the sequencer, then press WRITE/NEXT to advance thru the sequencer. Hold WRITE/NEXT to apply transpose, accent and/or slide. The notes input in 1. will light up.
3. Timing – Press TIME MODE and apply note, tie or rest to each step in the sequence. When the last step is completed the TD-3 returns to NORMAL mode

Hope it helps.

Download here

Note also that this guide can also apply to the original TB-303 and the Roland boutique TB-03 (if in OG mode).

Published by Nig on 10 Dec 2019

MC-707 Template Project

The 1.20 software for the MC-707 introduced some extra MDI functionality so the knobs now can transmit CC messages but. by default it’s switched off. I was getting a bit fed up having to go in and enable it for every new track, so I created a template project, with eight tracks created and their MIDI settings turned on*. In addition, all the tracks have their Sound Source set to CLIP, giving all possible 128 clips their own individual sounds or drum kits.

Tracks 1 and 2 are Drum Tracks, 3-7 are Tone Tracks and 8 is a Looper. There are no clips created so you have a blank canvas to play with.

*The MIDI settings for each track are as follows:

Tx MIDI Control Change ON
Tx MIDI Program Change OFF

Download HERE.

Published by Nig on 30 Nov 2018

Once Upon a Time

In a previous life I wrote a manual for the Cheetah SX-16 sampler, which came up in a post on Reddit recently and following a request for a copy, I dug out an old archive of it and put it in a pdf.

If anyone still has one of these beasts, or you pick one up from E-Bay, hopefully you’ll find it of use:-)

Download here

It’s funny how, 25 years on, I’m still trying to improve on manufacturers’ documentation, tho’ whether I’m actually achieving that is a different matter!

Published by Nig on 16 Oct 2018

VT-4 Voice Transformer

I must admit this was a bit unexpected, but it does look very interesting. With the TR-8S and now this, one can only hope that we’ll see more re-vamps of the Aira range, such as an MX-2 or a TB-3S:-)

VT-4 Voice Transformer

Published by Nig on 08 Aug 2018

Happy 808 Day:-)

Some really really nice updates from Roland today:-) Thank you very much:-)

System-8 V1.30:

The System-8 gets a new JX-3P plug-out in slot 3.

TR-8s V1.10:

The Tr-8s gets a new Step Loop function, plus the ability to preview samples before importing.

TR-8 V1.60:

The TR-8 gets the same Step Loop function as the TR-8S.

All three also receive a number of other unspecified bug fixes.

In addition, Roland have also created a new website for the Aira range, featuring a number of new kits and sounds for the TR-8s and System-8 respectively. One hopes that this will finally see some proper love from Roland for all their Aira products, some of which haven’t reveived any updates for quite a while now.


Note that installing any of these updates will require a factory reset so backup any kits, patterns or patches you want to keep before applying the updates.

Have fun:-)

Published by Nig on 23 Apr 2018

TR-08 Pattern/Patch Sheet

I was thinking about how I could get all the parameters of a TR-8S kit and pattern on a patch sheet, and found one that I’d done for the Boutique TR-08, so I thought I’d stick on here. Someone may find it useful.

TR-08 Patch Sheet

PDF download HERE.

Published by Nig on 20 Nov 2016

Roland Australia

Of the numerous Roland websites, the Australian site has got to be the most useful and informative IMO. This is a great insight into the TR-8 effects:

Roland TR-8 Effects

Great stuff:-)

Part 2. Some great info on various effect uses on the TR-8.

Part 3. The TR-8 meets the Aira EFX modules.

Published by Nig on 15 Nov 2016

Site Update

Added MX-1 and System-8 cheatsheets on the cheatsheets page, tho’ TBF, the System-8 one is just a list of the available CCs ATM.

Published by Nig on 05 Nov 2016

Using Plug-outs with no DAW

The updates I mentioned in the previous post meant that I had to re-install the SH-101 (actually, the Roland installer will force you to uninstall the previoous version) and this lead me having a nightmare to get the SH-101 plugged-out to my System-8. I’d been using the SH-101 in Maschine for ages, without any issues, but after updating found that when I tried to load the 101 as an instrument in Maschine, Maschine would crash. I eventually tracked this down to, I think, the plug-in being installed in two places, once in “C:\Program Files\Vstplugins” and once in “C:\Program Files\Native Instruments\VSTplugins 64 bit”, so I made sure it was only installed in the first directory (where my other Roland Plugins are actually installed). I’m not sure whether this did fix the crashing as, in the meantime, I’d also updated Maschine as well, so one or the other fixed it.

However, now when I loaded the plugin, it just showed as blank window, with none of the graphics or controls being shown. Weirdly, if I moved the mouse about, I could see the values of the controls show up and I could click on the screen where the patch-list was, as well the help and about buttons, but nothing else! I’ve spent a load of time faffing about with installing the plugin in different places, and even tried re-installing the original version I had, but I still kept getting this blank screen. I was also getting the same issue in Ableton, so it was most perplexing!

I started looking around for info on issues others had installing the Roland plugins and found a couple of recommendations for some DAW free VST hosting programs – one called VSTHost and one included in the Steinberg Development SDK. I tried VSThost first and again, got the same blank 101 screen. Tried the Steinberg kit and yep, a blank screen!

I do have another PC that I use, but it has no music-related software on it at all, so I thought I’d install the Plugin on there, along with the System-8 driver and the Steinberg kit, and it all works a treat. SH-101 plugged out to the System-8 and all patches transferred:-)

The details of setting this up are detailed below.

1. Download Steinberg’s SDK

Steinberg SDK Download

2. Install VST3PluginTestHost

You do not need the full SDK, just the Testhost program, which youo can install from the SDK zipfile. The screenshot, below shows the Windows 64-bit msi location.

Steinberg MSI

3. Install the driver and Plug-in software

4. Run the VST3PlugionTestHost programme and select the desired output

This is for the audio output of the player.

Steinberg VST3PluginTestHost

5. In the VST Player, click the down arrow next to Instruments, and select the Plug-in

Steinberg VST Player

6. The Plugin will appear!

You can now Plug-out the synth, upload and download patches and/or banks.

Steinberg SH-101

Published by Nig on 24 Sep 2016

Volca FM

Sorry, another non-Roland related post, but I was looking for a way of recording Volca FM patches and couldn’t find anything, so I created a patch sheet that allows you to see all the Operator values. Yes, you have to fill them in, sorry, but there’s not that many really. If I had any programming skills I’d make an interactive one, but in the meantime you’ll have to interact with it using a pen*!

Anyway, download it here – Volca FM Patch Sheet

*Other writing implements are available.

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