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Messages - DrumWagon

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Tech Help / Re: Volume Control Pedal
« on: March 11, 2010, 02:15:26 PM »
I would think any ol' MIDI pedal will do, although you'll need one that supports MIDI THRU to be able to hook up both the pedal and your Zendrum to the TD20 at the same time.

When you get the Z4 upgrade, have David install a CC knob on the back.  I have one on mine that I use to control MIDI volume and it's fantastic.

BTW, the CC number for volume is #7 and yes, the TD20 supports it.


ZenChat / Re: Z4 GUI Wishlist, Now Taking Requests
« on: March 10, 2010, 11:49:29 AM »
Sorry, I guess I didn't make that part clear -- yes, you can move around any trigger.  There is nothing special about the 6 extra triggers.  Any of the triggers can be moved, edited, resized, etc.


ZenChat / Re: Z4 GUI Wishlist, Now Taking Requests
« on: March 09, 2010, 03:31:58 PM »

ZenChat / Re: Z4 GUI Wishlist, Now Taking Requests
« on: March 09, 2010, 11:09:09 AM »
Those 6 triggers floating in the upper-right (the bone yard) represent the custom triggers. 

Up on the toolbar you can change the current "mode".  If you change it to "move mode" (that second icon) then you can drag around individual triggers.


ZenChat / Re: Z4 GUI Wishlist, Now Taking Requests
« on: March 08, 2010, 06:22:48 PM »
I noticed the "Center" pads are labeled C1-C4, and the "Custom" pads are labeled C1-C6.  

Good catch ;)  tnx!

ZenChat / Re: Z4 GUI Wishlist, Now Taking Requests
« on: March 08, 2010, 02:41:18 PM »
Jeremy, some great ideas there, but these are more for the "blue sky" thread as they fall under the purview of the hardware and machine programming folks.  While my application will make editing your Zendrums' configuration easier, it cannot alter the basic machine code or add non-existent features.

The editor that I'm working on is at its heart a sysex manipulator, much like the Mokugyo app that was available for the 3.x boards.  Mokugyo only went as far as exposing the note numbers though, whereas this new editor goes much deeper.

The sysex memory images for the 4.0 boards weigh in at around 8Kb -- much larger than the 3.x.  That's roughly 8000 unique memory addresses each of which (for the most part) hold a single setting's value.  So there are for instance 30x16 addresses that hold the note numbers, and another set that hold the channel numbers, etc.  When you tally up all the "known" addresses there's still a substantial block of memory that is unaccounted for for.  There's no telling what gems are hidden in there as it's pretty clear, and David has hinted as much on this forum, that the machine programmer went well beyond the initial feature spec.  I suspect that the settings for these extra features lurk within the unmapped areas of the sysex image and are undocumented simply because the simple physical interface of the Zendrum cannot expose them.  A PC based editor of course can bridge these limitations.

The first of these "hidden" features that I've discovered is the ability to define exactly which 4 notes are used for the crossfade feature.  Not earth-shattering for those people using VSTs exclusively, but for the module folks, that'll be huge.  And I hope to uncover other such treasures!

Here is a sneak peek at the interface that's under development.  Not shown here are the 'selected trigger edit pane' nor the various view modes.  For each trigger (and in each user setup) you'll be able to control the label/information that is shown.  Whether it be the canonical names (as shown) or the midi note number, note name, GM map name, GM icon, module specific name or a completely custom identifier.

Annotations will play a big part in the final app.  You'll be able to name and annotate pretty much everything.  Each user setup can be given a name and descriptive text, groups of triggers can be colored (and moved around for custom rigs).  You can even customize the color and wood grain for the body.  Once you've got things setup the way you like, you can then print or export the data.  You can also transfer the data from one Zendrum to another, share your setups with friends, etc.

I'll share more information as it develops.  


ZenChat / Z4 GUI Wishlist, Now Taking Requests
« on: March 03, 2010, 11:29:40 PM »
I'm currently nose-down and working on a cross-platform editor for Z4-based Zendrums.  If you have any requests, please let me know.

Currently planned features are:
  • Multi-platform support.  The editor will work equally well in Windows, MacOS and Linux environments.
  • Support for customized Zendrums -- up to 30 triggers in any configuration and 3 CCs.
  • Ability to specify non-sequential note numbers when using the cross-fade feature.
  • Ability to graphically see and tweak your personalized calibration.
  • Support for ZX, Laptop, Zap and Zap^2, basically anything that contains a 4.x board.

The editor is not planned to be backwards compatible with 3.x boards at this time, but portions of it could be depending on demand.

There is no firm release date for this application, but I expect it to be finalized in either the second or third quarter this year.  Early beta releases will probably be available as it nears completion.

Thanks in advance for your input!

oh, also it needs a cool name!  I've toyed with "Zazen" because of its relationship to Zen but it really doesn't have the right "ring" to it.  For the moment I'm just referring to the project as "ZenEdit".  Any ideas for a better name?


ZenChat / Re: Build 31
« on: February 23, 2010, 04:41:44 PM »
Rather confirms what I suspected after hearing the samples on the Alesis site.  I suppose I'll be sticking with my TDW-20 for a while longer.

I'm interested to hear what third-parties can do with the DM-10 though, once the "expansion" packs become available.

ZenChat / Re: Confusion on the new integrated wireless
« on: February 20, 2010, 11:14:02 AM »
So David, this fix for the TD-20 -- is this something that we can implement "off-site" as it were, or would it necessitate sending our instruments back to the factory?

Tech Help / Re: swishing brush sound on a td-20
« on: February 18, 2010, 06:47:08 PM »
The expansion isn't needed to use the brush features I pointed out -- they are all detailed in the original TD-20 manual, albeit in usual 'Roland speak'.  I was only lamenting that they didn't expand on the brush options within the expansion card.

I'm very interested to see what the Alesis DM10 is going to bring to the table.

ZenChat / Re: Brushes on the Zendrum
« on: February 12, 2010, 06:22:00 PM »
Sorry, I left out one crucial bit that may not be immediately obvious -- you need to enable "brush mode" on the kit before #23 will work.

From the main kit screen, hit F2 (func) then F3 (brush) and make sure the value is ON.   Now you should be hear a sweep when you hit a trigger that is set to note #23.  You'll need to have either snare drum #109 or #111 loaded up for it work though as those are the only two brushed snares.  I wished they would have added more brushed toms and snares to the expansion card, but really those two are pretty flexible once you start tweaking them.  Having only one brushed ride is the bigger challenge  :(

Personally I have a separate user setup on my Zen for use with brushes.  That setup uses more of the cymbal bows than my normal "sticks" setup does, and incorporates other articulations such as #23 (sweep) and #44 (hh foot) and also has more light percussion.

ZenChat / Re: Brushes on the Zendrum
« on: February 09, 2010, 10:46:19 PM »
Thumper, are you using note #23 for the sweep?  That in conjunction with instruments #109-112 are the key to great brush sounds on the TD-20.

I don't have a Zendrum, but... / Re: Some questions about wireless
« on: February 06, 2010, 11:49:07 AM »
In addition to Roland, it appear some M-Audio equipment can no longer be used when wired directly.   Neither my Axiom-25 nor my Midisport Uno are functioning.  :-\

I don't have a Zendrum, but... / Re: Some questions about wireless
« on: February 01, 2010, 05:13:22 PM »
The wireless option is *very* cool.  I can't imagine ever going back to being wired  ;D

Nothing sticks out of the Zendrum, it's all internal.  A single 9-volt powers everything.  Here's a pic, note that I had to give up a pedal/trigger jack in order to fit the battery box:

I've personally been using rechargeable 9-volts with great success.  I've never gone longer that 3 continuous hours with one so I can't say how long they really last, but they last long enough.  I always charge it up fully the night before and I also carry a spare alkaline for emergencies.

The only downside I've encountered so far is that I can no longer use a wired connection to my TD-20.  Wireless to it works fine, and wired connections do work if I go THRU another device first, but direct wired hookups no longer work.  My Alesis, E-MU and various firewire interfaces all still work fine when connected directly though, so must be some sorta handshake error with the Roland unit.

ZenChat / Re: cymbal choke
« on: January 25, 2010, 10:19:29 PM »
I was able to finally get cymbal choking to work with a TD-20.  It's not documented anywhere within their MIDI implementation, but they do respond to CC#123 (all notes off).  Simply assign your momentary switch to note #123 and you now have a panic switch.  Press it after hitting a cymbal and you have a fairly passable choke effect.  Is it perfect?  No.  Is it better than nothing?  You bet!   :)

I don't recall if the 3.0 boards allowed you to reassign the note number for the momentary switch or not, so I'm not sure if this works only for the Z4.

By the way, this technique will also probably work for any Roland module, not just the TD-20.  It also functions the same no matter which way you have the polarity set.

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