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Hamichord (VB3?) Bugs


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So, it's been about a year gigging with my Hamichord M-C3 and I love it! However, I've discovered a few bugs (perhaps software related) and wanted to share (maybe Guido can come up with a fix).


First, I found that it is possible to brick the instrument by plugging a pedalboard into the midi in on the exp-edition computer module, rather than the midi in on the controller itself. The manual warns not to do this, but foolish me wasn't paying attention and was organless for a three hour gig. Thank goodness my girlfriend can lift heavy things and was able to save the day by fetching my Roland RD-150 from home. By the way, Fender Rhodes sounds great through a rotating speaker. The bricked M-C3 was saved by plugging in a monitor/mouse and re-loading VB3 (some days and a few drinks later). I have since taped over the trouble-making midi in to avoid future catastrophe. It seems like this problem might be remedied through a software fix?


The second issue, which is really more of a nuisance than something that would end a gig, is the instrument freezing (sustaining whatever notes were being played at the time of the freeze) when playing very fast. I haven't been able to re-create the situation at home, but at the gig tonight we were really cooking on "There will never be another you" (you know, heel-toe, chops flying, amp screaming...) and it just froze during the climax of my solo. The drummer quickly took a solo and all was well after a shutdown/restart, but it was a bit of a letdown. I would like to know that I can take risks without the instrument choking on me. This is the second time this has happened. The first time was on the previous firmware (same scenario - fast and loud), this time was on the latest edition. All I can surmise is that in the heat of the moment I might have hit the B preset key with my left hand (lower manual), while playing a lot of notes with my right hand (upper manual). This is the only issue I have with the instrument now, but is one that worries me. It's too perfect of a B-3 clone to be unstable. Hopefully there's a software fix that can be rolled out soon. I'd be interested to hear if anyone has experienced this issue on their M-C3 or Mojo.


Anyway, enough bug reporting. Despite the freeze, tonight's gig was awesome. We had a great crowd that seemed to dig what we were doing and clapped after solos. In addition, this was my first time using a Motion Sound KBR 3D that I picked up for cheap, in a state of disrepair, and refurbished - it was singin' attached to the m-c3. The rotating horn and tube make all the difference, compared to it's shorter kp200sn cousin. I was surprised at how much bass it put out as well (it's a keeper).




Hamichord M-C3, Midified 25 note B-3 pedalboard, Roland RD-150, Motion Sound KP-200s, Motion Sound KBR-3D, home-built 65lbs 200w rotating horn/drum thing...



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I use a Hamichord M-C3 (albeit without the EXP-Edition) to drive VB3 on my Win7 x64 laptop. I use it on rock, country, and organ trio jazz gigs. Obviously, I don't have the necessary hardware for the first issue, and I have never experienced the second.


I love the M-C3 and have built a great live rig around it. I doubt that I will ever part with it!

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