Author Topic: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware  (Read 19600 times)

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #30 on: July 10, 2019, 06:54:14 am »
I promised updates on milestones.  We now have code (thanks again to encode.ru's moderator!) to compress the main program as well as decompress.  The encoder was done "blind" so it is not perfect, once I can get raw memory dumps from flash, it will need to be tweaked.  No code/algorithm for encoding LZ98 exists anywhere, all of the Roland products that use this compression only have the decoding logic in them (which makes total sense).

If all of this doesn't work out, a last resort will be to either not compress at all or use something different (read: easier).  This will involve modifying the boot program, which I really don't want to do, but will if I have to.  I also don't know yet how much flash there is to store the entire firmware blob.  They may have compressed for a number of reasons - smaller download, obfuscation, or flash limitations/footprint.

New MV should be here tomorrow, and I'll start wiring up a debug harness to the old one.  First steps will be trying to dump flash and write to flash, and then I will try something simple like modifying a string in the main program and loading it.  :fingerscrossed:  8)
« Last Edit: August 30, 2019, 09:43:31 am by hangnef »

Offline X2Zero

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #31 on: July 10, 2019, 08:20:55 am »
I believe looking at the VGA board circuit diagram that there is a provision for a keyboard wired in and conglomerated into 1 PS2 socket. So you would just need a regular 1 into 2 PS splitter (still available). I actually plugged in a PS2 keyboard but no luck :)

Offline keefaz

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #32 on: July 10, 2019, 11:59:07 am »
I was thinking about MIDI sysex implementation, it would be cool to add some sysex recognition to control MV like editing patches remotely from a software. But I know processor is old and may not be up to this extra workload

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #33 on: July 10, 2019, 01:48:45 pm »
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I believe looking at the VGA board circuit diagram that there is a provision for a keyboard wired in and conglomerated into 1 PS2 socket. So you would just need a regular 1 into 2 PS splitter (still available). I actually plugged in a PS2 keyboard but no luck :)

Good to know, thanks for that info!  Probably latent support for it somewhere in the code (similar to PCMCIA).

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #34 on: July 10, 2019, 01:49:53 pm »
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I was thinking about MIDI sysex implementation, it would be cool to add some sysex recognition to control MV like editing patches remotely from a software. But I know processor is old and may not be up to this extra workload

Yeah, not sure about that, but I will add it to the list.  My new SL MKIII doesn't have sysex support like the previous ones so this could be useful.

Offline SMUDGE

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #35 on: July 10, 2019, 04:57:00 pm »
I don't know yet if this is a bug, but I wrote about weird MV behavior here:

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My number one workflow complaint with the MV is the inability to cycle through active pop up windows without completely closing the ones on top. While you can unstack windows and move them around so you can see them all, one of the only pop ups I know of that you can change parameters on simultaneously is the pad bank window. Could be wrong but it seems that way. The use of the shift key and directional buttons would be a nice way to cycle.

Offline Waxdat

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #36 on: July 10, 2019, 11:40:45 pm »
ARP patterns can actually be be programmed using the step sequencer and saved into midi clips. These clips can always be transposed into any key.

Offline SMUDGE

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #37 on: July 11, 2019, 12:09:18 am »
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ARP patterns can actually be be programmed using the step sequencer and saved into midi clips. These clips can always be transposed into any key.

Not always. They can only be transposed into keys of the same quality, ie Maj to Maj/Min to Min, or into their relative enharmonic equivalent, ie CM to Em, if you want the arpeggios to remain harmonic. Otherwise some notes in the arpeggio will have to be flatted or sharped, depending on the target key. Even in enharmonic equivalents you're going to have a different series of whole and half steps ascending and descending, depending on the scale.

That's why the MV and all other Roland sequencers like the MC line should have had the arranger that came with the Roland PMA-5. Any melody or chord progression you put into it can be automatically (correctly) transposed to any other key, regardless of key quality.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2019, 12:14:59 am by SMUDGE »

Offline Benjah

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #38 on: July 11, 2019, 01:16:59 am »
You can of course use the step sequencer for entering in arpeggios but this is a far cry from using an actual arpeggiator. I really enjoy holding down chord shapes over sequences and in real tine hearing the arpeggiator going to work on them, building cool melodic patterns and sparking new ideas. It's a standard tool with most sequencers and one that I think the MV8X00 would greatly benefit from.

Offline Waxdat

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #39 on: July 15, 2019, 08:50:01 am »
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ARP patterns can actually be be programmed using the step sequencer and saved into midi clips. These clips can always be transposed into any key.

Not always. They can only be transposed into keys of the same quality, ie Maj to Maj/Min to Min, or into their relative enharmonic equivalent, ie CM to Em, if you want the arpeggios to remain harmonic. Otherwise some notes in the arpeggio will have to be flatted or sharped, depending on the target key. Even in enharmonic equivalents you're going to have a different series of whole and half steps ascending and descending, depending on the scale.

That's why the MV and all other Roland sequencers like the MC line should have had the arranger that came with the Roland PMA-5. Any melody or chord progression you put into it can be automatically (correctly) transposed to any other key, regardless of key quality.

Offline Seon

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #40 on: July 16, 2019, 05:44:48 pm »

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #41 on: July 19, 2019, 09:56:20 am »
Been playing around with creating new patches for the MV using several AKWF waveforms (includes some 8bit nintendo/c64 stuff) and some sampled VSTi's.

I think the Low Pass filter in the instrument/partial edit is a bit too strong (probably a 24db filter). It would be nice to have the option to choose another Low Pass filter in the partial (12DB filter). There are some 12DB filters in the MFX section so maybe you could use that code to offer a 12DB filter in the instrument/partial section ?


Offline Phased-Spaces

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #42 on: July 19, 2019, 02:40:37 pm »
I'll have to skim back through the previous replies..
Here are my initial 'nice to haves' for the MV-8800:
1) 1GB ram Fully supported, recognised and stable & correctly displayed in all relevant modes.
2)  The Audio track capacity to be either 8 Stereo (Current arrangement) or splittable into 16 mono tracks (Or a mixture of both)...  each fully discrete, pan-able and fully supported across all bus & FX arrangement ... i think the original MV-8000 DID allow for 16 mono tracks, so why Roland dropped this on the 8800 is a proper thumb in the ass decision!
3) This will come down to the HW of the graphics & and how far it can be squeezed???., but if the display refresh latency could be brought down a bit more, that would be excellent..  Esp when displayed on an external monitor.. There is a noticeable lag in the scrolling, esp at higher tempos.. Which can be off putting sometimes.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2019, 02:45:13 pm by Phased-Spaces »

Offline Seon

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #43 on: July 20, 2019, 08:50:22 pm »

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #44 on: July 21, 2019, 08:57:45 am »
Great ideas everyone, thank you!

Wanted to give another status update.  In addition to more reversing of the code (this will always be on-going), I started working on the HW debugging interface to be able to re-flash and single step code I upload.  Here's some pics of the wiring and the SH-3 7706 USB debugger.

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This is all great, but unfortunately the debugger I purchased does NOT work w/ the chip that is in the MV series.  I've reached out to the company to see if the debugger can be re-flashed to support it.  If it can't, I have a hard decision to make since these things are quite expensive.  Hopefully, things will work out here :fingers crossed:   :)

PS: Note to admin, choosing "Add image to post" puts the link inline and wipes out your post's text.