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Randelph last won the day on August 14

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About Randelph

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  1. Next Generation MZ-X wish list

    Here’s one way to optimize hex tone editing using only 1 additional screen! They did a fantastic job here, not only are the volume levels on the HexLayer Edit screen super obvious, but you can edit 7 key hex layer parameters, 1 at a time, in addition to volume. As I looked at this way of doing it, i noticed there was no way, other than volume, to see and change the values for ALL SIX TONES on one screen. The way i see it, this board has a lot of limitations in terms of its split and layer capabilities compared to most boards I’ve played that cost over $1,000. In part this is like a charming limitation- because of this simple layout, what you can do with the 4 Tones is clearly laid out and about as user friendly and well thought out as I’ve seen (Yes Yes Yes, this was a big part of my buying decision, that it was built with user friendliness in mind). But the obvious downside is that you only have super basic mapping of the Tones possible. Which is EXACTLY the things the Hex Tones allow you to do. All of a sudden with Hex Tones you’ve got - velocity layers - low and high key ranges the layer can be set to sound - seeing the Wave/Sample name and number This exact, small set of parameters, needs to be seen, all at once, so you can visually see at a glance, the volume, velocity range, key range, and wave name/number for all 6 Tones. Whether you’re editing or just want to know how to play a Hex Tone, you HAVE TO HAVE this information. Otherwise you’re just stumbling in the dark. And, there’s no consistency from one factory Hex Tone to another, so it is literally just banging on the keyboard to find out how this Hex Tone has been mapped. So I’d really love to see the editing for the hex tones to be optimized, not be an oversight that is so simple to fix (relatively), and brings forward the ability to easily create your own Hex Tones. It’d be a huge missed opportunity if they didn’t jump on this, their great invention and sometimes great implementation of Hex Tones is not user friendly for performing and editing, therefore not completing the built-in design for this board to be super user friendly and roll your own Hex Tones / Phrases /Chords/ samples/ etc. As it is now,, you have the ability, on the Layer page, to see and edit these and other parameters, ONE AT A TIME. This is a powerful way to work for some parts of the editing process, but I’d also like a page where its not one-at-a-time editing, but SEE-IT-ALL-AT-ONCE-ON-ONE-PAGE, a few key parameters that you need to see right in front of you, no dancing around to multiple pages. What i propose, is that Casio ditch the rename button on the HexLayer Edit page (the Rename button is redundant, you can do this when you go to write a tone) and put a button for HexLayer Edit 2, or whatever they’d call it. It’d take you to a screen where you had the Volume indicators that go from white (0) to all red {volume of 128), but there’d be no separate numerical indicator (which takes up a lot of space) these actually be done within the white/red box by putting that numerical value in black in the middle of the boxing . Above this would be the full names / numbers of the samples used. Not sure how this would work, may take two lines per Tone. You’d also have to be able to select new waves / samples from these names. Below this would be another set of boxes, these indicating velocity that it responds to. So something that responded to 0-128 would be all red, if only responding from a velocity of 40-80, then only the middle part would be red. Once again, using black numerals, you’d be able, within this box, to express the exact numerical values. Below this would be another set of boxes, but denoting the key range for each of the 6 Tones.. So it’d be all red if it was from the lowest to the highest notes, and by contrast, it’d be red just in the middle, from left to right instead of up and down, if it was from C2-G4. This one is a little trickier, being that representing 88 notes in such a tiny space seems a little challenging, but at a glance, even with such a small box, you’d know if it covered the whole range of the keyboard, or just a discernible section. Once again, numerals in black to say the exact notes it comes from and goes to would be another source of information. Then below that or built in to the sets of boxes above, you’d have a system of copy and paste such that you could easily copy and paste one Tone Layer for another, maybe with an option to swap them, so like Layer 1 is swapped out with Layer 2. There would also need to be a solo system on this page, the type where you can have as many parts soloed at the same time as you like. Another way to do this i suppose is just having boxes to turn on/off each of the layers, like the Main Page does for Tones. I know this seems like a lot for a page this size, but with clever implementation it’d be completely intuitive and get more done per square inch than the current industrial design, WHILE not breaking radically from the general layout of the screens, many of which are very different one from the other. By my reckoning, you’d be able to get 5-6 full sized sets of boxes on one screen, more if some of the boxes were scaled in height as needed. if you made this a for special ‘inside’ editing page, it’s worth bending that design aesthetic in the name of functionality, esp since this kind of editing needs to be done on 1 page, and this screen is on the smaller side for being able to do that. And I’m convinced it could be done without sacrificing too much of the easy readability and overtall size of these boxes, you could still fit in 40-50% more info if you were motivated and could bend the design a bit. What are you more proud of and wanting to achieve as a diverse company that happens? to make musical instruments? Respectability, consistency, repeatable industrial design- or perhaps you want you instruments to catch on, Casio develops even more of a name and excitement around it, and over the long term you have established a brand that is successful and a dynamic leader in the marketplace. I certainly have bought a lot of Casios, appreciate them for being a price leader, and am excited to see them grow as a company that still offers extremely high value, but is also upping their game in all ways. Why not be smart about it and pluck low lying fruit such as I’m suggesting-? The natural evolution- I’ve seen many keyboards orphaned, who knows whats going on in the governing corporate boards that make decisions of investment or not. I for one, put a vote in for this product, i believe that with further investment to develop it completely, including more tutorials and PDFs, more software updates and patch creation, making sure that the promise of this board, which has such a brilliant foundation, not be neglected but developed consistently- in that case i promise that this board will go far, and be the blueprint for many successful boards and products to come. Randy
  2. My first set of MZ-X500 Tones

    Wow, fantastic layout- having sound examples as well as the new Tones made from existing samples! But I’m not hearing any sound when i push the play button for each of the new Tones. It changes from the play icon to the pause icon, as it should, but i don’t hear anything and the ticker that shows elapsed time does not change. I’m using an iPad mini 2.
  3. Slider Levels and Customization

    Tson, I see we think alike, i just detailed in my wish list for Casio to take advantage of those sliders! And to make it obvious what tones are playing in a hex tone so you know what what the heck you’re adjusting, and the ability to easily re-arrange the Tones in a hex tone in a fashion that makes sense to you. I personally would try for a consistent arrangement so i absolutely knew, even without the screen telling me, that the number 1 slider corresponds to the most basic building block of a sound, all the way to 5 and six being accents or add-ones. Of course that doesn’t work with all of them, some of them are zoned, some are velocity mapped, so i’d Probably have 3 or more different templates, designated with a number or letter in the name of the hex tone, that would let me know the basic layout of the hex tone. Otherwise you’re just guessing. Of course, if they were able to show all 6 hex tones and their names and volumes on one screen, that’d be killer. Randy
  4. Next Generation MZ-X wish list

    Great topic!!! I’m going to divide my list into several parts: 1. Improvements of existing board with software updates 2. New board that has new hardware IMPROVEMENTS TO EXISTING BOARD WITH SOFTWARE: 1. Allow volume of Upper 1,2, Lower 1,2, to be controlled with the organ sliders. This could be done such that you see on the screen a super obvious flag that shows the sliders are now controlling ORGAN and now they’re controlling HEX TONE VOLUMES and now they’re controlling UPPER N LOWER 1 & 2 LEVELS, and now they’re controlling ALL VOLUME LEVELS and now they’re controlling ... 1.B. Short of that, have a way to go DIRECTLY from the Tone page to the Mixer page. I’m constantly on the Tone page working on selecting and editing various Tones, and its a PITA that there’s no direct way to go directly from the Tone page to the Mixer page, being that I’m constantly adjusting volumes between the tones. 1.C. Also, when auto accompaniment is playing along with live playing and mic/aux inputs,, it’s cumbersome to adjust the various levels, compared to grabbing a slider that corresponds to what you could be seeing on the screen. 2. Make creating and editing Hex Tones much more intuitive. Number 1, create an IPad editor that allows you to see most of the parameters on one screen. Number 2, redesign the software on the board so you can more easily see and adjust the Tone layers: There needs to be a screen where you can see all 6 Tones at once, their names, and be able to re-assign hex tone #1 to the #3 slot, for example, so you can re-order them in a way that makes sense to you. Otherwise, it’s a crap shoot, both when you’re trying to edit and when you’re playing a hex tone, you don’t know what is assigned where, and so you’re playing blind unless you’ve got a super good memory or play just a few that you’ve memorized. Major stumbling block for an otherwise stellar system, the Hex Tones would get a lot more users coming up with their own if this was implemented. 2.b. Hex Tones for every category of sounds, not just synth. The Hex Tones are what gives this board much of its sonic firepower and it’s as if the creators thought it’d be awesome for EDM, but what about the rest of the sounds? 3. Many more video and pdf tutorials by Casio. Many/most? Of the features are not covered or barely covered, there is a serious shortfall here. 4. Banks of sounds that can be put in the 256MB. A perfect way to show Casio is into this board, and plans on supporting it in the long term. At the least, 1 bank of sounds from Casio would get people acquainted with how its done and then they’d start to roll their own. 5. Fix existing bugs. I’ve only encountered one bug, when you re-assign the 2d DSP to the Tones, it hangs. Others have a fairly long and serious list of bugs. 6. Re-calibrate the knobs. I’d RATHER have a great big data wheel, but working with this design, i don’t understand why the increment values are so slow on the Value knob. Seriously, why do I have to do more than two big turns to go from 0-128? There’s increment/decrement buttons for fine control. As it is, it’s 5-7 turns to go from 0-128 is too much. There’s more, but thats all that comes to mind at the moment. Randy
  5. Hex layers imported from PX560? PX5s?

    Alen, I agree, a conversion utility would be nice. But lets face it, there's relatively few Hex Tones on either board. On the X500 there's a preponderance of EDM, and obviously, there's fantastic uses beyond that. What's really needed to get a whole community of users crafting these amazing bad boys would be an editor. I think Casio is missing out on a whole lot of user generated excitement that'd come from being able to roll your own. Imagine the Hex Tone libraries that'd come out!!!!! Casio, that's word of mouth, that's sales! What good are all the individual volume sliders for Hex Tones if the only thing you know for sure is the overall volume, Cutoff and Resonance? Sure, when you're editing them you take the time to familiarize yourself with what Tones are on what layer, but if you're performing or just playing, not editing, most of us will have NO idea what Tones are assigned to what slider. With an editor and the copy paste utilities that could be part of it, it'd be child's play to make your own scheme of what goes where: for example, I'd probably do something like sliders 1-3 are the most basic fundamentals, underpinning of the sound, 4 and or 5 would be solo or otherwise, 6 would be the wildcard. Many way of approaching this, the point is to have consistency. If i needed more than one arrangement type of Hex Tones, I'd simply put a capital letter at the end or beginning of the name to let myself know that the order of the arrangement is such and such. In other words, i go to a Hex Tone I've massaged I know in basic terms whats going to happen when i change the sliders. I don't use the layer sliders when I'm playing live cause i don't know what's going on with each one. Why are there just 2 of us on this thread? Aren't hex tones and the ability to edit them and get the work already done on other boards- isn't that important to the majority of the Users? Where are you guys and gals? Do you use Hex Tones much>? Randy
  6. Hex layers imported from PX560? PX5s?

    Brad, thanks for clarifying that. Now that you mention it, with the emphasis on hex tones for EDM and bass, it's likely they developed the Hex Tones to the next step and added samples for that genre. However, since Hex Tones can use any of the samples each keyboard has onboard, there must be Hex Tones on the PX560 that would be tedious but straightforward to convert: choosing the samples to use is obviously easy, and then there's the minutiae of copying the same parameters for each layer. Even with the EDM/bass Hex Tones, is the x500 that much more developed? I suppose the PX560 doesn't have mono mode. From what I've seen there's a paucity of new Hex Tones available, this is the reason I'm asking so many questions. @ Alen, yes, a utility would be helpful. Otherwise, short of having two machines side by side, this wouldn't be possible. But i imagine that would only work coming from the PX560 being translated for the X500, being that the X500 has more parameters and what would you do with those extra parameters if you tried translating to the PX560? Another thing that would work as a workaround is to be able to print out all the parameters of a given Hex Tone. It'd be tedious, but straightforward to transfer those parameters to the X500. Assuming you had the same samples to work with. For something that is one of its most powerful features, the accessibility to Hex Tones seems like its on a back burner, waiting for more. They developed this wonderful way of creating sounds with real time volume control, but at present there's no ipad or other editor avaialble- this is exactly what editors excel at, having a larger screen, being able to see all of the most critical parameters for all 6 tones at once would spur a lot of development and creativity and interest in this board. And the Editor wouldn't need to cover all aspects of operating the board- just the Hex Tones! Admittedly I'm far from fully conversant with all this board can do, but from what I've seen so far the existing screen works well for editing everything else. The only place I've seen so far is editing Hex Tones could be several orders of magnitude more powerful and intuitive with a well done big screen editor with immediate visual access to all 6 layers.
  7. Hex layers imported from PX560? PX5s?

    Brad, Thanks for that. I asked so many questions i suppose i could have arranged them with numbers to make it easier to answer- so i just changed the original post. I suppose you wouldn't know about the PX560 and its compatibility, its one of the few Casio boards you don't have. I heard that the XW-G1 had hex tones, but it was an early version and is not compatible with the x500 Hex Tones. In the same way, the PX5s has been out for awhile, i imagine there have been changes made. However, the PX560 came out pretty close to the same time with the new screen and it's not a stretch to imagine the Hex Tone structure would be the same or very similar. Don't know why Mike Martin would make 9 Hex tones for the 560 and only 1 for the x500. I'm confused as well- I thought the hex tones would have a bunch of new samples, but all of them i saw were simply accessing the built-in sounds.
  8. Just had my first look at the downloads section. 1. Can we import the Hex Tones from the PX560 directly? 2. If not, is there a way to indirectly import them from the PX560, maybe with tweaking needed, but available nonetheless? 3. How similar are the samples in the PX 560 and the x500? File compatibility aside, if they don't have the same samples, its not going to work. 4. Do any of you think Mike Martin would be kind enough to translate various Hex Tones he's made for these other boards for the X500? What's his favorite beer? Is he a whirling dervish with way to much on his plate to care about x500 players, or is it a matter of enough of us pleading for a bit of his time and attention. Does he read this forum? I would imagine this would not be a huge task for him if the 560 and x500 have the same samples for a given Hex Tone. The PX560 came out around the same time as the x500, so are the file formats very very similar or the same for Hex Tones? Thanks, Randy PS Does anybody on this forum have answers to these questions? Perhaps some of the PX560 folks would know?
  9. A story well told is often well embellished! Glad this worked out for you, with a 3 year warranty from BAX your existing deal was a very good one. It's an amazing keyboard, you're in for a great ride!
  10. PCM

    AFAIK, every manufacturer that states how much memory they use in their boards put it in terms of the equivalent memory if it was not compressed, presumably in WAV 44.1 format.
  11. Insert Efx

    As always, thanks Brad! Serious bug report! So i was playing around with the mixer setting and DSP, using your info. I assigned DSP 2 to another Tone (Upper 2), and in another attempt, to one of the layers in a Hex Tone: 1. On the Edit page I chose Effects 2. Choosing any DSP (tried ring mod, phaser, etc.) 3. Using XY grid I hear a loud pop 4. No sound from keyboard, even when i switch to different registrations, and there's a kind of scratchy sound from the volume knob from about 8:00 to 10;00 5. Switching off/on the keyboard brings the keyboard back to normal 6. Same results trying to apply DSP to a Hex Tone or any Tone Freaked me out the first time!
  12. Insert Efx

    Tried finding this in the manuals but saw nothing. 1. There are 2 DSP insert efx available at any given time, right? How do those get assigned? I can create User Tones with insert efx, and if all 4 in a registration has insert efx, how is it determined which 2 tones get the insert efx? 2. I'm creating User Tones, and the Tone I'm working on is the only one sounding. However, even with the insert efx assigned and set to full tilt using the x-y grid, it's not affecting the sound- why not? 3. Are Insert efx assignable to individual layers in a Hex tone or only to all 6 layers? 4. Do all of the drawbar organs use the rotary insert efx? Thanks, Randy
  13. Why WOULDN'T one buy MZ X500 ?

    If money matters, then it's all about what compares for a similar price. Myself I don't care much about the arranger features, and the only other board that made it to the top of my list is the Roland FA-06. However, the FA-06 has one of the shizziest keybeds I've ever felt, and that was a buying decision, refused to be saddled with that action. The action on their x500 may be an issue, time will tell. I've seen that even the same models (variations on the WK series) had noticeably different actions, some better than others, so i don't know if i trust the consistency for their keybeds. There have been some people here who have complained of very noisy keybeds on the X500. I guess i lucked out, mine is relatively quiet, and i hope that doesn't change over time. I have a WK 7600, and over the course of several years the keybed loosened up in a way that makes it less enjoyable and accurate to play (i play noticeably sloppier on it). That said, I've been really pleased with the keybed on the X500, i get decent dynamics out of it and feel in control. Overall I have to say I'm pretty blown away with the X500. It's by far the most user friendly board I've ever owned (I have a Nord Stage, but that doesn't count, it doesn't have a sequencer, etc.), which makes learning it and discovering what it can do pretty natural and fun. The onboard speakers are surprisingly powerful- at first i didn't think so, but then i discovered it has bass eq assigned to one of its knobs, and that brings the full sound forward. And the hex layers are a blast, with the six "organ" sliders you can adjust the volume of each of those layers and create your own Hex tones pretty easily. And the pads feel great, once again, good dynamic sensitivity for playing expressively with your fingers. And ther quality of sounds- hard to quantify, but overall they're big, full sounds, and the efx are really decent Is money a major consideration for you, and if so what are the contender boards you're considering? And what do you use your keyboards for? Randy
  14. Well I "almost" got one! - From Bax

    I'd say you got a great deal, even if you're impatiently waiting for a power supply. I bought mine as B stock as well, a return, and bought it for less than a x300 new. However I don't have the safety of a warranty.