Keyboard Rig Pics


3dc

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I use Pro Tools to record. I have dabbled with using iPad apps and VSTs, but have not yet fully integrated them into my rig. I wouldn't use a DAW for that, though.
Forgive me for newbie question but do you guys use only sounds from your keyboards or you also use external music libraries. If so how do you import those external sounds in your workstations for gigs? I was always under impression that on any given workstation you can only play its original or factory sounds.

Is that correct?
 
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happyrat1

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I use various versions of Cakewalk. An ancient 20 year old version that runs under Linux and The Bandcamp version as well with a Virtual Machine running Win 10.

Gary ;)
 

happyrat1

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Forgive me for newbie question but do you guys use only sounds from your keyboards or you also use external music libraries. If so how do you import those external sounds in your workstations for gigs? I was always under impression that on any given workstation you can only play its original or factory sounds.

Is that correct?
Most Workstations (good ones) can import patches and/or sequences from a thumb drive or an SD Card.

Gary ;)
 

3dc

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Most Workstations (good ones) can import patches and/or sequences from a thumb drive or an SD Card.

Gary ;)
I assume you are talking about MIDI, WAV and IFF formats but MIDI is played only from sounds ALREADY in workstation right? How would I play a software synth sound I created in my DAW in workstation? This is so confusing. o_O
 
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Forgive me for newbie question but do you guys use only sounds from your keyboards or you also use external music libraries. If so how do you import those external sounds in your workstations for gigs? I was always under impression that on any given workstation you can only play its original or factory sounds.

Is that correct?
Starting backwards from the last, besides their internal sounds, workstations (as well as many other keyboards that you wouldn't necessarily call workstations) can play the following:

* additional factory, user, or third party patches that use whatever samples or other sound generating algorithms already exist in the keyboard.

* sounds that require new samples, IF the keyboard has available rewritable memory to hold the wave data for the new keyboard-playable sounds. In some cases, this memory is addressed in a proprietary manner, and only the manufacturer can provide these new sounds (like the Nord Piano Library sounds, the axial expansions you can add to the Roland FA, the optional sounds that can be added to the Hammond SK1/SK2/SKX organs and the Korg Kross). In other cases, that memory is available for the user or third parties to make new sounds available, as on the Korg Kronos, Roland Juno DS, Yamaha MODX, Nord (Sample Library, not Piano Library), Dexibells, and Kurzweil Forte/PC4 (though the amounts of available memory for this vary substantially among the boards).

* sounds that are external to the board but can be triggered by MIDI. These sounds could be in another keyboard, a sound module, an iPhone/iPad, or a Mac/Windows/Linux computer.

So then getting to your question about external sounds, if you're talking about computer-based (VST) sounds, you typically do not import the sounds into your keyboard, you usually use your keyboard to trigger them by sending MIDI into your computer, which must be attached in order to play them. (Same with sounds from an iPad or other external sound source.) However, if you have a keyboard that has user available sample memory as discussed above, you can also sometimes convert the VST sounds and bring them directly into the keyboard, with varylng levels of success. Chicken Systems Translator can convert many computer sample formats to soundfonts, and soundfonts, in turn, memory permitting, can be loaded into some keyboards (Dexibells and Kronos, for example, and Montage with a third party utility), and they also have utilities to convert directly into Motif, Korg, and Kurzweil formats. Another approach is to sample the VST instrument yourself, there are tools to automate this, including SampleRobot (Mac/Win), Samplit (Mac/Win), Extreme Sample Converter (Win), and the Autosampler in Mainstage (Mac). But it still takes some skill to get good results, and you should not expect the full quality and features of the original VST.
 

happyrat1

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You are confusing VSTi with hardware synths.

You can't take a sound you created in one VST and play it in a different one.

The same way you can't take a patch made for a Kronos and Play it on a Kurzweil.

Either way you have to work with the tools the synth gives you to edit, import and export patches.

Some can work with samples, so yes, with a little work you can get a MOOG sound out of a Kronos or a Kurzweil.

Don't strain your brain over it buckwheat. ;) Just enjoy the music :)

(EDIT) Scott posted while I was writing this.

Gary ;)
 
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...also, picking up from your earlier post... you do not need a DAW to play VSTs, you need a VST Host. DAWs happen to also function as VST hosts, but that's not their primary purpose... it's overkill and unnecessarily complicated. There are hosting environments designed just for this purpose, like Gig Performer (Mac/Win), Camelot Pro (Mac/Win), Mainstage (Mac), and Cantabile (Win). Also, many VSTs are availeble with their own standalone players, so you may not even need to use a separate host. But as soon as you want to run multiple VSTs simultaneously, one of those programs is probably what you'd want.

iOS similarly has apps to manage playing sounds from multiple apps at once, like Keystage, iMidiPatchbay, and Camelot Pro.

You don't *need* to have this kind of control environment app to play multiple sounds... you could just load different apps and set them to respond to different MIDI channels, and as long as the keyboard you're using as a controller lets you be selective about what MIDI channels you're sending on at any given time, you can switch sounds that way, too. So your need for such a program depends on the sophistication of what you're trying to do, and what MIDI capabilities you have or don't have in your controller.
 

3dc

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However, if you have a keyboard that has user available sample memory as discussed above, you can also sometimes convert the VST sounds and bring them directly into the keyboard, with varylng levels of success. Chicken Systems Translator can convert many computer sample formats to soundfonts, and soundfonts, in turn, memory permitting, can be loaded into some keyboards (Dexibells and Kronos, for example, and Montage with a third party utility), and they also have utilities to convert directly into Motif, Korg, and Kurzweil formats. Another approach is to sample the VST instrument yourself, there are tools to automate this, including SampleRobot (Mac/Win), Samplit (Mac/Win), Extreme Sample Converter (Win), and the Autosampler in Mainstage (Mac). But it still takes some skill to get good results, and you should not expect the full quality and features of the original VST.
OK thanks for very detailed explanation.
I am asking because I see you have MODX in your rig setup which I am considering to buy but I couldn't understand how keyboard players use sounds made in PC-DAW environment and then export that particular sound into MODX6 for concert gigs. I know the NOTEBOOK and MIDI controller setup for gigs but not this one. I always thought workstations are closed and sound wise limited systems.

Anyway you gave me tons of new material to explore and learn. :)
 
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Yes, MODX is very versatile. You can trigger up to 8 external zones for sounds from another connected device (laptop, whatever), and it also has a gigabyte of user-available sample memory into which you can load whatever custom sounds you'd like. In fact, for a while, Yamaha was offering free SampleRobot software to Montage purchasers, which could be used to put some version of your VST sounds directly into your Montage.
 
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My current working setup... View attachment 2132Bottom to top, that's a Casio PX-500L, Vox Continental 73, Nord Stage 3 Compact, and Nord Lead 3 on the left; and on the right, it's a Kurzweil PC4, Yamaha MODX7, and Korg PA1000.

Boards not pictured that still have pretty high status in my stable at the moment:

Roland AX-Edge - because everyone needs a keytar (it's also a nice sounding lightweight board with aftertouch, and good patch selection functions including MIDI zoning, and now it has the zen-core compatibility/expansions, too).

Korg Microstation - best knock-around travel board (good traveling iPad MIDI controller, too).

Nord C1 - there's something about playing a double manual (but I may have found a very close substitute in the pic above, with the Vox under the Stage, which is a new experiment).

Casio PX-5S - this one has popped in and out of my gig rigs with some regularity. It seems that just when I think it's out, it pulls me back in.

Viscount K5 - I keep meaning to spend some more time with this and iPad/Surface Pro integration. (Though the Kurz is a really nice controller, too.)

As for the future, I may be looking at how a PC4-7 and/or a Hammond SK Pro could change the equation a bit...
Permission requested to show this picture to my wife before I tell her I want to get one more keyboard, which would give me a grand total of THREE!
 
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My current rig
 

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I really miss my B3 burn4him. My wife wants me to get another one and put it in the living room. That was the finest instrument I ever owned. I just got tired of lugging it around everywhere.

The CP80. Always wanted one but never owned one. Back in my lounge days I traveled with an Aeolian Melody Pro spinet. Had to tune it every time I put it on stage. Carried a universal string set with me, because the darn thing was always breaking strings! It played really nice though, and had Helpinstill pickups installed in it.

I actually bought a brand new Rhodes in about 1980. Spent the first day I owned it adjusting the pickups and the action. It was a dissapointing piece of cr*p. They made a hot rod kit for them, like the one T. Levitz played in The Dixie Dregs, but I never got around to buying the kit for mine.
I retired my 88 Rhodes in 1980 and bought a new 76! The flat top was way nicer to stack stuff on. (plus the 88 chased me down a flight of concrete stairs in an arena - not my finest hour). i don’t miss the bleeding fingers and broken nails. Here’s some of my current junk and a pic of partially completed and long overdue stacking road cases.
 

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happyrat1

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Actually it's amazing how many of those old "fine furniture" home organs can be picked up for a song or even free these days.

I see ads for old Farfisas, Yamahas, Wurlitzers, etc. dozens of times over whenever I browse the local classifieds.

Some of these guys are desperate enough to give the suckers away to the first person who'll haul it away.

A lot in pristine shape as well. Plenty of pianos too. Concert grands to uprights to spinets.

If I had the room for one I would have picked one up years ago. :(

Still, it looks like came fresh from a church :)

Nice rig!!!

Gary ;)
 

rsm

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Actually it's amazing how many of those old "fine furniture" home organs can be picked up for a song or even free these days.

I see ads for old Farfisas, Yamahas, Wurlitzers, etc. dozens of times over whenever I browse the local classifieds.

Some of these guys are desperate enough to give the suckers away to the first person who'll haul it away.

A lot in pristine shape as well. Plenty of pianos too. Concert grands to uprights to spinets.

If I had the room for one I would have picked one up years ago. :(

Still, it looks like came fresh from a church :)

Nice rig!!!

Gary ;)

I'd be concerned getting one on these for low cost or free unless you know how to work on them.

I got this one from a dealer who delivered it. Updated the wiring, cleaned out the "red foam", and more. It's working great, and never left the original owners house until he passed away. I'm sure I got what I paid for, as well as a 90 day warranty. Cheers!
 
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happyrat1

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I'm the sort of guy that enjoys the DIY challenge :)

Restoring an old classic like that would make an excellent winter project :)

Gary ;)

PS. And I'm old enough to remember changing vacuum tubes whenever the TV set blew out as a kid :D :D :D
 

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