Testing a Roland MKB-300 before buying

Discussion in 'Keyboard Purchase Recommendations' started by MajorSeventh, Nov 8, 2018 at 8:13 PM.

  1. MajorSeventh

    MajorSeventh

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    I know someone selling a Roland MKB-300 keyboard controller, but he has nothing to test it with. There is no sound module connected (he doesn't have one), but he says there are sounds stored on the keyboard itself.
    I am new to MIDI and rack synths, but want to get into it. How do I test this keyboard before I buy it?
    There are no audio out jacks on the keyboard, I downloaded the manual to check out what connections are available.
    Should I get a MIDI in/out to USB cable? That would get the signal to the PC, but it still wouldn't be audio.
    What is the cheapest way to test it? I don't want to buy a bunch of equipment before I check it out.
    I have an o-scope. I guess I could check the digital signal out of the MIDI jack.
    Thanks for your help!
     
    MajorSeventh, Nov 8, 2018 at 8:13 PM
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  2. MajorSeventh

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    Cheapest way to test it is to buy a $5 USB MIDI Class Compliant Interface and plug it into a computer running a freeware VSTi.

    Sound will be output on the computer's speakers. Good enough for a basic test.

    Checking out the specs, I can guarantee there are no built in sounds. Instead it can store the digital control data for up to 128 patches but those patches would still depend on a hardware sound module like a Roland Sound Canvas or a computer based VSTi.

    Google any terms I may have used that you don't understand and you will find exactly what you need.

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Nov 8, 2018 at 9:07 PM
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  3. MajorSeventh

    MajorSeventh

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    So, I downloaded Zampler//RX as a VST plugin. The next question is, "Plugin to what?"
    I don't have a VST folder. The Zampler instructions told me to place the files (dll) in that folder and gave directory locations for the C: drive.
    Do I need a DAW of some kind installed first?
     
    MajorSeventh, Nov 8, 2018 at 10:11 PM
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  4. MajorSeventh

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    You don't need a DAW. Simplest thing is to download a freeware VST Plugin Host program.

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Nov 8, 2018 at 10:16 PM
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  5. MajorSeventh

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    Also some VST plugins can operate in standalone mode. Google standalone VST.

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Nov 8, 2018 at 10:38 PM
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  6. MajorSeventh

    CowboyNQ

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    Assuming you have a hardware keyboard already: Bring that along to your test and use it as the sound module.
     
    CowboyNQ, Nov 8, 2018 at 11:04 PM
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  7. MajorSeventh

    MajorSeventh

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    I will check that out. I installed MuLab and installed Zampler as a plugin. I will have to look at the audio setup.
    Does a VST Host automatically use the Windows soundcard. I don't have any audio gear in my (work) computer.
    I will also look at Google VST.
    Thanks!
     
    MajorSeventh, Nov 8, 2018 at 11:13 PM
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  8. MajorSeventh

    MajorSeventh

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    I don't have a hardware keyboard - I'm starting from nothing. That is why I'm buying the Roland.
    Thanks, though.
     
    MajorSeventh, Nov 8, 2018 at 11:14 PM
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  9. MajorSeventh

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    A VST Host will usually auto detect whatever soundcard or device you have installed as default.

    As long as you have drivers for it it will be pretty much plug and play with possibly some configuration screens in the setup.

    Worst case scenario at work you can plug in a USB soundcard in a pinch.

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Nov 8, 2018 at 11:33 PM
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