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TOPIC: G-800 Help vs E-A7

G-800 Help vs E-A7 12 Nov 2017 17:36 #6418

  • bluewolfe
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The heart of my MIDI studio is my trusty 22 year old G-800 (with a Hammond XK-3c, Emu Vintage Keys, etc), It just had a hissy fit and I fixed most of it. The remaining problem is the Performance Memory. As soon as I push the "group" button, the display turns to garbage, all LEDs light up and it is dead until I do
a power reset. Does anyone know what board houses the performance logic.? I'm guessing it is the main computer board.
I have two options ... buy the computer board and hope for the best, or, buy an E-A7. I'm told the E-A7 MIGHT be compatible (Accepts G-800 styles) Will it also accept program memory? Will it still recognize the same Tones sent from Sonar? (I have created 211 songs via Sonar and I'd hate to throw them away.) I know it does not have provisions for an FC-7 type multi foot controller, no MIDI thru, stuff like that. I can get around that

Any help will be GREATLY appreciated
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G-800 Help vs E-A7 13 Nov 2017 18:26 #6419

  • Diki
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Personally, I'd look around for a used BK-9.

For starters, you'll miss the 76. Secondly, despite the sampler and multipads, there's very little content for either of these features (and very difficult roadblocks to easily importing your own content), so on paper they look good, but in practice they aren't.

The BK-9 has a Chord Sequencer (the E-A7 doesn't) which you might miss from the G800. And an FC-7 input.

But bottom line, I think that the sound set in a BK-9, unless you deal specifically with a lot of ethnic musics, is far better. Better pianos, guitars, B3 sim, SN articulated sounds (E-A7 has none), far more MFX...

As to style compatibility, yes, everything SHOULD work fine in any BK or EA-7. No, it won't sound IDENTICAL (some of the legacy sounds have better modern equivalents) but it will sound better in most cases. Program changes sent from the DAW will call up correct sounds (but again, not necessarily identical). But you have a better option...

Roland came out with a VERY in depth but easy to use SMF/Style header editor called 'Makeup Tools'. You can edit not only the sound, but also drum sounds WITHIN a kit, put MFX on them (up to three with a BK-9), EQ them (including EQ'ing individual drums) and also do velocity offsets (important in these days of multi-velocity drum sounds).

In other words, you can transfer the SMF from the DAW to the Roland, edit the sequence's header in FAR better depth than the DAW can, add effects, markers (Mark/Jump is a huge improvement to playing SMF's), and generally make the old sequences sound MUCH better.

You are pretty much on your own coming up with spare parts for the G800 (I had one briefly, but traded it in quickly when the G1000, with the ZIP drive came out). 22 years is an eternity in arranger years!

Yes, if you can't find a BK-9, the E-A7 will do in a pinch. But I think you will miss the 76 (the E-A7 is not as good an action) and the Chord sequencer if you used them.
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G-800 Help vs E-A7 13 Nov 2017 19:31 #6420

  • bluewolfe
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Hi Diki,

Thanks for all the info. Yup, n0 76 is a bummer, but, I can get around that by using other controllers, then change the instrument. The Bk-9 sounds good, however, I won’t buy used, especially from a private person. If the E-A7 will play G-8oo styles, that’s great because I have many that I created for specific songs, plus the Gigastyle collection. I’ve owned 2 C3’s and 1 B3 and now I have an Xk-3c, so tonewheel sounds are not needed. The chord sequencer was handy, but, I think I can get around that by recording the MIDI song (minus the lead) into Sonar, then playing that back while I record the lead. I do that because some songs are quite complicated to play and the chord “sequencer” takes some of the load off … I have a partially disabled left hand. That’s, also, why I like non-weighted keys. Once in Sonar, I can edit it to my heart’s content, record/edit the audio in Audacity and then use Tag to tag, and add album cover art. I use MIDI formulas to get non-GS tones, which should work for the E-A7.

FYI: For those looking for G-800 parts, KeyboardKountry.com has all the G-8oo boards, cables and a bunch more (even that pesky ol’ 31/2 drive) with some good prices.

Thanks again
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G-800 Help vs E-A7 14 Nov 2017 22:02 #6421

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The Chord Sequencer is very much an 'instant gratification' thing, very underused, IMHO.

Want to just practice a solo, try out some sounds, audition a bunch of styles for a tune, etc., etc.? The CS allows you to very quickly lay down a simple set of changes, loop them, and then go about your business. Sure, you COULD do it by recording a loop in the DAW, and playing it into the NTA channel, but by the time you've started everything up, your inspiration has vanished!

I use the CS a LOT for just some simple changes while I audition styles... Set the Tempo param to 'Auto' (so the tempo doesn't change as you change styles), start the CS, then load style after style after style as you hunt for the one closest to your vision. I find this SO much better than either having the arranger play just the one chord, or tie up your LH as you keep loading new styles. I always feel I can get a far better idea of whether a style will work if I hear it playing some changes.

There are a LOT of uses for the CS... B)

On the whole, unless from a professional that may have heavily gigged a BK-9, I would say that most home use barely wears a BK-9 (or any other arranger). I would not rule out a home use only used BK-9 if I were you...
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G-800 Help vs E-A7 16 Nov 2017 18:09 #6422

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Thanks, again, Diki for all the info. You are certainly a very active and attentive Administrator.. As you can see from the photo, I need a keyboard/arranger. It is the most convenient configuration. As mentioned, I can use Sonar as the chord sequencer, so I don't expect any problem there. The A-E7 is on its way, I just, now, have to remember all the custom programming I did 22 years ago to get everything back to normal ... normal being a subjective term :unsure:
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G-800 Help vs E-A7 17 Nov 2017 08:24 #6423

  • loshk
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I would place such equipment differently. Try to deploy the stand with keyboard synthesizers by 180 degrees and sit with your back to the wall. And place the speakers so that they look at you from a distance of 2-3 meters, and for amplifiers and other devices you need to buy rack (So there is for me)
Excuse me for my opinion
This is MIDI-connection in my studio
2.jpg
Roland E-80 v.2.01 (SRX-01, 02, 10), Roland M-GS64, Roland XV-5050, Ketron SD-2, Edirol PCR-500, Edirol M-16-DX, Kawai MAV-8
Last Edit: 17 Nov 2017 08:43 by loshk.
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G-800 Help vs E-A7 17 Nov 2017 19:15 #6424

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I still don't see a 76 (or 88) anywhere there...

Admittedly, those speakers you have might be tough to get up to ear height, but I'm surprised you have them on the floor. Here's my current home rig... I find these computer desks great for music production, and quite inexpensive. I modified the 'ears' to project out more than the stock configuration.
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G-800 Help vs E-A7 17 Nov 2017 19:38 #6425

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Hey, Loshk thanks for your opinion. The speakers are just for jamming and entertainment. I use headphones for any recording. I got used to them and the result is fine for me. I've done 211 original and cover songs so far. This and flying keeps me sane in my retirement :P
Cool setup, Diki

Thanks.
Last Edit: 17 Nov 2017 19:40 by bluewolfe.
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