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Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod #2508466
07/04/13 04:28 AM
07/04/13 04:28 AM
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Stevesie Offline OP
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I'm posting this so anyone who owns a Roland A-Pro midi controller and is frustrated with the unusable aftertouch can improve it to some degree. As stock, it requires a ridiculous amount of force to activate. After this fairly simple mod, it is bodering on usable. I don't take credit for this mod - it came from another forum - I'm just adding some photos to make it clearer. No responsibility taken for destroyed boards - only do this if you are handy with a screwdriver and know about delicate electronics!

Firstly, remove all the screws from the underside of the board - except for those directly under the keybed. On the A800 there are around 12 larger screws and then 5 smaller ones under the front lip of the board. Be careful not to let the top panel fall or move too far from the bottom assembly as it is joined by several flat cables. The mod can be made without disconnecting these. Slide the top panel forward to clear the lip of the keys, then lift slightly. You will see a small yellow trimmer potentiometer(indicated by arrow in photo). Carefully adjust this fully clockwise with a small screwdriver. Refit the lid and screws and the aftertouch should now be considerably easier to activate. I measured that it took about 750g of force.






Even after the mod however, it's still not great. I think that the key landing felt is too thin and hard to compress. The aftertouch also relies on some key flex to work - it's much harder to activate from the key tip than it is from 1/3 of the way in. I think there is potential to replace this stip with a softer felt or rubber to allow better aftertouch control. Better still, Roland could have built it right in the first place. Aside from the aftertouch issue, I think the board has a good feel and is nice and light.

KC Island
Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: Stevesie] #2508469
07/04/13 04:41 AM
07/04/13 04:41 AM
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Ashville.Guru Offline
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Thanks, this looks pretty useful.

BTW, have you checked the actual AT values being sent, using a midi monitor - before/after the mod?

- Guru


Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: Ashville.Guru] #2508472
07/04/13 04:57 AM
07/04/13 04:57 AM
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Stevesie Offline OP
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Yep, I can hit 127 now without too much effort, before it was just crazy how hard you had to press. It's a bit on/off though - it needs a little bit more travel in my opinion. I'm far from an expert player though!

Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: Stevesie] #2508510
07/04/13 11:14 AM
07/04/13 11:14 AM
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Tusker Offline
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Good to know Stevesie. grin

I have an A500 I've hardly used. Picked it up thinking it was time to have one of those knobby controllers and it's been put back in the box, each time I've pulled it out. I haven't really needed it.

Roland has always had a stiffer AT action than other manufacturers, but if it's particularly stiff ... it's good to know you can fix it with a screwdriver. Thanks. thu

Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: Tusker] #2508528
07/04/13 12:19 PM
07/04/13 12:19 PM
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mate stubb Offline
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Roland - bringing you concrete feeling aftertouch for 30 years!


Moe
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Kawai Novus: "Please feel surprised even more."

http://www.hotrodmotm.com
Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: mate stubb] #2508535
07/04/13 01:03 PM
07/04/13 01:03 PM
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Reezekeys Offline
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Looking at that picture, I had the idea that if there was a way to reduce the area of the part of the key that presses on the AT strip, you could get the same aftertouch value with less pressure on the key. Filing down the flat part that contacts the strip into more of a "point" would probably not work since it changes the clearance, plus it's a hell of a lot of work to do on every key! But maybe glueing a small piece of plastic or similar would do the job. Given how channel aftertouch works you could try it on one key and know whether it would work or not.

Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: Reezekeys] #2508558
07/04/13 02:30 PM
07/04/13 02:30 PM
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Thanks for this thread. I don't own one now, but I may. I love topics like this where people take there instruments and adapt/modify them to their needs an wants!

Nice work. thu


David
Gig Rig: Casio PX-5S | Komplete Kontrol S61MK2 |Alesis Vortex Wireless 2 | GigPerformer 3|

Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: Reezekeys] #2508567
07/04/13 03:08 PM
07/04/13 03:08 PM
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Ashville.Guru Offline
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Of course, for those using a laptop/iOS, remapping the aftertouch curve in software would be a far more practical and reliable solution. For a hardware rig, the mod would be pretty darn useful.

- Guru


Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: Ashville.Guru] #2761537
03/05/16 06:49 AM
03/05/16 06:49 AM
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arcadios Offline
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Hello, my first post here...
Well...
Yes I bought last week the a800pro midi keyboard.. The store still had the older cakewalk logo, but I was asured it is the same with the Roland a800pro...
Aftertouch was terribly difficult to engage and I decided to open it voiding the waranty..
Yes its true that the yellow screw must be set fully clockwise to make aftertouch more sensitive.... But I did something in addition to that. I removed the white tape in front the aftertouch tape... the one that only the white keys stop when pressed down. Now since both black and white keys when pressed end to to the aftertouch tape..This made almost equal the velocity and aftrrtouch of blacks and whites.... It is something that I did on my own responsibility...and If someone is not afraid of can do it... Now the keyboard has a better touch in my opinion....and the white keys aftrrtouch came closer to the black keys sensitivity...before the white keys needed more pressure to engage aftertouch because there was the resistance of the second white tape....

Last edited by arcadiosr; 03/05/16 07:19 AM.
Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: arcadios] #2761543
03/05/16 08:13 AM
03/05/16 08:13 AM
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Markyboard Offline
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Thanks from me as well - owner of an A-300Pro, but not for much longer. I was aware of the trim pot inside the unit that could be adjusted but assumed much like the A80 from years ago changing the resistance value would have unsatisfactory results. But it wasn't until I started using it a few weeks ago that I found the general feel of the keys not so good. I realize keyboard feel (and aftertouch for that matter) is subjective but when it comes to this subject...

Originally Posted By: mate stubb
Roland - bringing you concrete feeling aftertouch for 30 years!

facepalm grin

I also appreciate the OP's and others tech tips.

Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: arcadios] #2761544
03/05/16 08:22 AM
03/05/16 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted By: arcadiosr
Now since both black and white keys when pressed end to to the aftertouch tape..This made almost equal the velocity and aftrrtouch of blacks and whites.... It is something that I did on my own responsibility...and If someone is not afraid of can do it... Now the keyboard has a better touch in my opinion....and the white keys aftrrtouch came closer to the black keys sensitivity...before the white keys needed more pressure to engage aftertouch because there was the resistance of the second white tape....


For me the problem is the velocity on the black keys. When playing on the inside (away from the front key edges) the force required to generate the desired velocity is unpredictable and inconsistent imo. The white keys have similar characteristics but I don't tend to play so far on the inside on white keys.

Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: Markyboard] #2761844
03/06/16 03:40 AM
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arcadios Offline
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Yes I agree... But it is a matter of physics... The front of the white keys has a bigger distance from the velocity sensor... So this creates a slightly higher ride which divides the force in more space.... Excuse my English if I don't use the appropriate expressions on physics..

Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: arcadios] #2761845
03/06/16 03:44 AM
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arcadios Offline
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I believe also that the modification of adding weight in front of the keys would make the feeling more natural... But there must be a very carefully work and precise gluing of the metallic pieces that would add the weight...

Last edited by arcadiosr; 03/06/16 03:46 AM.
Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: arcadios] #2761861
03/06/16 08:33 AM
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Good points Arcadiosr and very clearly stated.

Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: Markyboard] #2762108
03/07/16 02:46 AM
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arcadios Offline
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.... Do A1-A8 Dynamic Pads have also Aftertouch?? Haven't seen any yet but there are settings in A800pro menu for the AFT curve.....

Re: Roland A800 Pro Aftertouch Mod [Re: arcadios] #2762113
03/07/16 02:51 AM
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I answer to my own question.
Yes they do send aftertouch.. just tested with a midi monitor...
I don't know if the yellow screw of the keyboard aftertouch also affected the PADS sensitivity though.....
Perhaps its time to open the keyboard again


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