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About AquilaRift

  • Birthday 07/26/1971


  • hobbies
    Wishlist: Korg Wavestate (module, hopefully); Elektron Octatrak, Digitak; Korg Kronos
  • Location
    Peoria, IL
  1. My two pennies: As an ex-gigging musician, aftertouch was vital then and remains vital now. The only keyboard I've ever owned that didn't have AT was the 49-key Roland @ Juno (but it did respond to AT sent over MIDI). For things like volume swells or changes, I would generally assign that work to an expression pedal. But in a multi-keyboard setup sometimes your feet are busy doing other things, like holding down the sustain pedal on one board. If you're standing up while playing, it can be a challenge to use both feet without tumbling over. LOL. So, AT then becomes an excellent tool in that scenario. On older digital synths that didn't include many knobs or sliders (Korg M1, for example), AT was absolutely necessary for some kind of expressive playing, like opening or closing a filter or bringing in a layered pad under an elec. piano. But AT really did some magic when playing monophonically. Say you're playing a saxophone patch... you could use mod wheel for vibrato, but AT could trigger a different LFO for a trill effect. Yet if your other hand was busy on another keyboard, you could simply use AT for vibrato or pitch bend as needed. My Wavestations respond to Poly AT and my Morpheus does as well, so eventually in the mid-90s I picked up an Ensoniq VFX SD for that. Now I have a Hydrasynth, which has really excellent Poly AT implementation (much better than the Ensoniq's), and even tho it's a mono-timbral synth, I think the Poly AT on it is just the best thing ever. In fact, the reason the Hydrasynth caught my attention was because it had Poly AT. One of the very cool things about the AT on the Hydrasynth is that internally it will do both channel and poly AT at the same time. Anyway, count me as one of those who are disappointed in the lack of aftertouch on some of the newer synths. I feel that Korg has kind of dropped the ball here, especially with the Wavestate and the Opsix -- no AT and not enough keys to my liking. Of the course the Nautilus doesn't have an AT keybed either, which is a head-scratcher. At two grand for the 61-key, with fewer knobs and no sliders, it's just odd that it lacks aftertouch, and that makes a Kronos far more appealing.
  2. I've considered the Elektron desktops, both the Digitone and Digitakt. I quite like them, actually, and they also import samples, which you can then mangle to death if you like. They've been on my Xmas wishlist for a while. If I were going to get an FM synth with a proper keyboard, I would favor a Yahama SY77 or SY99. Yeah, they are 30 years old and the newer FM synths do a lot more, but I always wanted one of those and could never afford them back in the 90s. Btw, the link in my previous comment is to a post I made about the Wavestate, and how it is unlikely to get a module or desktop version according to Dan P of Korg. It's possible that the Opsix would fall under the same reasoning. Well, you're right of course. There is logic to Korg's decisions. It's just not *my* logic. LOL. It occurred to me after I made my post, that I could get both the Opsix and a Wavestate and have them placed together side by side on a typical stand. This doesn't solve the AT problem, but I do have several controllers to choose from.
  3. I know it's fairly tiny already, but this thing screams for a desktop version, just like the Wavestate also screams for one. Korg seems to be hell-bent on reusing the same case and [subjective opinion here] shabby keybed for its latest synths. I know that makes sense from a design/cost perspective, but these 37-key formats with no AT are absolutely killing my desire to spend as much money as possible on hardware that I don't need. LOL. I'm just gonna have to start my own synth company. Who's with me?
  4. So regarding the lack of aftertouch in pretty much all of Korg's recent products, is it really that cost-prohibitive to design and install a strip under the keybed? This is practically ancient tech, and channel aftertouch used to be standard on the vast majority of keyboards from all manufacturers. Maybe I'm too old and my expectations are too high, but I don't understand why manufacturers are eschewing aftertouch. How much are they really saving in design and manufacturing costs here?
  5. Was just having a look at the Wavestate topic at the GS forums and spotted Dan P.'s post re a desktop/module model. Short version, Korg [still] have no plans for a desktop Wavestate. Post here: https://www.gearslutz.com/board/showpost.php?p=15088211&postcount=3272 and I'll upload a screen cap too, so you don't have to follow the link. Amortization aside, which I understand (and assuming there also won't be any Wavestate EX version with 61 keys and aftertouch), I would love to see is a third party modify the current model -- perhaps re-casing it or something. But I don't think that would happen either -- it would be too expensive and there are intellectual property rights to consider. I kind of doubt that Korg would grant a license to a third party company for modding or repackaging the Wavestate. All mods would have to be done by users. I do think a fully functional, real time software editor would make a purchase of the current model more palatable. Particularly because I'm not a fan of the screen on the Wavestate either. So this latest update from Dan is a huge disappointment for me, given how much I love the hardware Wavestations. I suppose at some future date Korg may release a software version of the Wavestate, but I won't be buying it. Unless something amazing happens, I'm unlikely to ever get a Wavestate.
  6. Thanks for your kind words. Selling? no, I don't think so. Sharing? Possibly, as soon as I'll learn to use the "Manager" without it making a mess of my sounds...! Btw, I tried to design sounds with the 'player' in mind, for a series of reasons: - I am a player myself, and I get the most fun out of a synth when I can play phrases on the keys, as opposed to hold notes; - I seem to have noticed an abundance of Hydrasynth videos with nothing else than held notes or arpeggios/sequences. I'm not contrary to them in any way, but I found that a bit more of balance and variety could be healthy; - I usually start familiarizing with a synth by making some of the classic sonorities - even when, like in this case, they don't seem to be the instrument's speciality. I could very well program more 'tweakable' sounds in the future. You're welcome. The patch manager is dead easy to use. It's a drag and drop thing, and it works bidirectionally, in that you can copy from the keyboard to the patch manager and vice versa. You'll want to create a new bank for your sounds, and then copy from the keyboard's bank where your sounds are to the new bank in the software. If you aren't sure how that works, there is a vid on ASM['s YouTube: To your point on the abundance of vids with mostly arpeggios (or one to two-chord evolving pad compositions), yeah... it's definitely a thing! I've become used to it. Part of that seems to be the Eurorack trend, where it's all about the sound design and less about writing music as fully-formed songs with choruses and breaks, etc. I don't mean to be unfair to those people at all. Lots of cool and very inspiring things are done on those demos and jams.
  7. Thank you for sharing your demo. Very cool. First and possibly obvious question: Are you planning on sharing or selling your patches? I agree with your concept of being immediately playable and not requiring a ton of tweaking. When I designed the patches in my bank, I tried to do this as well. I wanted to give the one-finger synthesists and desktop players options to tweak and radically alter the sound too, so I set up all the macros for that kind of playing. But really, I had in mind those who do play keys, and hopefully I made some decent patches that are usable for keyboardists straight away. I sort of assumed that most keyboardists would reach for the main filter controls when doing lead sounds, but when playing pads they would use aftertouch or the mod wheel to modulate the filter and vibrato, or bring in a third oscillator, additional LFOs, etc. I'm definitely a fan of making patches that go from a bog-standard analog sound that sits really well in a mix to something really crazy and wild with tweaking and or using the Hydrasynth's poly aftertouch.
  8. Anyone else wish the Trigger Env sources included other envelopes or perhaps even mod matrix settings? How about the tap tempo button as a source? It's odd that the sources are limited to only Note on, LFOs, Ribbon on/off, sustain pedal and Mod 1 & 2. I suppose I'm gonna have to experiment with routing a Mod out to a Mod in with a patch cable to see what can be done with that -- but if anyone has already done this, please post your results. Otherwise, perhaps just post your top wishlist items.
  9. Well, dang. I've been calling it MOD-EX for years. Feel like a total amateur, but it's this guy's fault: <<- He pronounces it as mod-ex, and I think that's the only video I've [partially] watched about the MODX series. Right. I dunno if this is a question or a complaint... but I see that the mod and pitch wheels are placed high on the front panel instead of to the side of the keyboard. Is this intended to reduce the length of the keyboard? I've always preferred my controllers to be to the left of the board. So is it reasonably comfortable to rest your hand along the side of the chassis when performing? Is there some other rationale for placing those controllers there? Even the Korg Wavestate has its controllers up on the front panel instead of the side, and I suppose I'm less than keen on this configuration...
  10. I thought I might resurrect this topic because possibly I have misheard the lyrics to almost every song ever released. Before I get into why that it is (and it's not a mondegreen situation, although I have plenty of those too), there have a been a lot of songs that I simply didn't understand what I did properly hear and misinterpreted it. Of the many that come to mind, the one that always makes me laugh is from Billy Joel's "Piano Man." When he sings, "And they sit at the bar and put bread in my jar" I pictured people stuffing actual bread in a jar. I didn't know that he meant money, because I was about four or five years old when I first heard the song. I couldn't fathom why anyone would put bread in a jar. What would that do? LOL. OK, as for mishearing things, some of us have what's called Auditory Processing Disorder (APD). You can look it up, but basically, it means that I struggle to hear spoken words, especially in noisy places or if there is something going on in the background. There's more to it than only this. Suffice to say that I hear things phonetically, but that often leads to misinterpretation if I lack context. For example, my mother used to wake me up with, "Up and at 'em!" For my entire childhood, I thought she was saying, "Up and Adam." Why do I gotta be Adam? I could never understand what the hell that meant -- not until I read that phrase in a book at some point in my 20s. Then! And only then! Then I understood it. Like a light bulb turning on. If someone doesn't speak or sing with good enunciation (I'm looking at you, Eddie Vedder, with Yellow Ledbetter, particularly), then it's hopeless. This is why song lyrics that came with albums were so vital to me in the pre-internet era. And if an album didn't have written lyrics, I would go to a store that sold sheet music for rock/pop songs and hope to find it. The problem with APD is that it becomes a mental distraction when people are talking to me in real life. My brain is trying to work through all the possibilities of what I think I misheard, and that causes me to lose focus on what it is still being said to me. It's a massive struggle sometimes, depending on how tired I am, too. To overcome it, I may repeat back what I think I heard, or ask someone to say something again. I know that can be annoying, and it's embarrassing for me too, so sometimes I say nothing at all. Anyway, I will always watch films with subtitles on, just to be certain I've understood what I've heard. If only real life had subtitles! I can hear musical notes and intervals just fine. I play "by ear" pretty well most of the time. But certain tones, depending on their volume levels relative to the vocal, might obscure lyrics in the song. Heavy reverb on a voice also does this. But anyway... I read through all of the posts here and laughed because I misheard almost all of those, too. Indeed, you pick any song, and I guarantee that I've misheard a lyric in it. Take Young Americans from David Bowie, and besides mishearing most of the song, substitute the word "hung" for young... and that's what I thought Bowie was singing at times until I finally read the lyrics.
  11. Just a quick note to say that my free patch bank for the Hydrasynth is now available on ASM's web site here: https://www.ashunsoundmachines.com/downloads Also a huge shout out and massive thank you to DrSynth for helping me QA a significant number of these patches, all of which sound and play a lot better thanks to his efforts and time spent. We all know that none of us have much time, so I am really grateful for DrSynth's help. I've also got a patch listing for this bank on my Google Drive, which you can download here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1QqHkILSAs-Own0HSv-dxj39T0NVoum53/view?usp=sharing
  12. Protonmail maybe? It's encrypted mail, apart from the subject line. I believe it's free up to 500mb storage... and then goes paid from there. You can also connect it to existing e-mail accounts. Works good on phones, iPads, etc.
  13. I believe it happened very, very close to that, absolutely -- if not just like that, which I base on my own experience in design engineering and dealing with marketing. It also fits with Korg's current business model. Now, if Korg had made a much cheaper version of the Kronos, for example, at the same price point as the Wavestate to go along with the high-end workstation models, I'd have truly considered it, crappy keys or module version, no sequencer, or what not. I just could never afford the Kronos, even their somewhat scaled down models. I've got a weighted 88-key Korg workstation, and several semi-weighted 61-key synths. And really, the only thing that has kept me from buying the Wavestate right now is that I don't want nor do I need and have the space for a 37-key synth. I'd buy a module/desktop version, with or without most of the knobs, in a heartbeat. I wish I had the skills to chop up the Wavestate and make a completely custom module out of it -- I'm thinking purple and silver for colors will do nicely! I'm pretty sure a bigger screen could be added, possibly with some sort of additional software added. But I don't have those skills. So I'll be one of the first hundred or so people to pre-order a desktop/module Wavestate if it is ever announced. Meanwhile, maybe Korg would consider returning to their concept of Korg Komponents, and develop a five-octave synth chassis that you could use with multiple synths... just swap out a board, and off you go. That would be heavenly...
  14. To this day I have never had a FB account. I contacted ASM and begged them to host their own forum on their website... I've asked too, but they won't. There is only a few of them on the team and they don't have the time for it, they tell me. I do think there has to be a better option than Farcebook though. I like how Korg Forums is now hosted by Korg, but is still being run and managed by Sharp, but also I like it because its focus is on only Korg gear. Maybe when ASM release other gear they'll be able to do something similar. I can create a simple Google site to discuss patch design, share tips & tricks, link to YouTube vids, Soundcloud stuff, links to forum posts, and even host free patch banks, links to paid banks, etc., etc., but I can't run a dedicated forum on that. And thinking about it, perhaps that's a good thing! Once people start offering their opinions, things often go wrong. LOL. But what I do not have, and what most of us don't have, is the time to do that.
  15. Good luck with your surgery / recovery. I hope it works out! Also hope you managed to complete your studio overhaul, 'cause you don't wanna do that while healing up.
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