Author Topic: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware  (Read 23407 times)

Offline SMUDGE

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #240 on: May 19, 2020, 11:50:02 am »
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I have some dumb questions for those who might own an MC-909 and could answer or test for me:

Is the built in synth better than the MV?  Wondering if it is more than just the bass synth in the MV?  I ask because these 2 machines are almost identical in HW going by the schematics and if there's some synth stuff I can pull over, I think that is do-able.  I did look into whether the MV could somehow support those plug in cards, but the HW pins to interface with those are not present on the MV.  However, they both have pretty much the same custom Roland chips and overall architecture.

2nd, I'm wondering if the Turntable Simulator works like varispeed on a tape machine.  Can you slow down the playback/pitch with the it, record something (say a sample or audio track if the MC909 supports it), and then if you pitch it back up the recorded part would play faster/higher pitched.

So, lots of learning (and questions) going on.   :)

Not dumb questions.

The MC-909 has an XV 5080 engine in it, I think. Some of the patches are the same as the original. There is more documentation on the XV's than the 909. Start there.

The sampler does not depend on the turntable simulator to set the recording rate. It isn't like a tape machine with varispeed. You can change the playback speed (EDIT, /pitch) of a sample with the turntable fader (EDIT, like a record), but not the "recording speed".
« Last Edit: May 19, 2020, 12:49:47 pm by SMUDGE »

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #241 on: May 19, 2020, 07:14:51 pm »
Thanks for the info.  The 909 and MV have the same XV chip so it's interesting that there is more functionality there w/ the 909 (not taking into account the ability to take those cards).  Figuring out what is missing and could come over will take a while, I'm not a big synthesis guy so I can't really spot that stuff easily.  Is it is as simple as there are fewer oscillators/waveforms built it?  I'll have to read up to answer those types of questions.  My understanding is the XV synths are romplers (I have an Integra which has that stuff built in).

And thank you for the turntable simulator info, saved me a LOT of effort.  If it can't do varispeed it's not as interesting to me, I'll have to look into modifying the sample rate via HW or tweaking the DAC/ADCs.

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #242 on: May 20, 2020, 07:27:15 am »
I should also mention the Fantom XR (and related Fantoms) are also pretty much identical to the 909/MV series, although all of the Roland custom chips are combined into a single chip, the WX.

I checked out the XV5080, it uses the exact same chip as the MV/MC909, TC223C660CF-503(XV).  However, it has 2 of them.  :)

Also trying to find MC909 synth patches, not having much luck.  These would be equivalent to the Analog Bass MFX patches on the MV (but most likely very different in their file format).

What I'm trying to figure out here is, is the MV inferior to these 2 other machines in terms of synthesis (not counting the missing 2nd XV chip in the case of the 5080, and the SRV card support)?  Why is there only a bass synth?  Could there be more that could be done?  If so, I'd like to add that functionality.
« Last Edit: May 20, 2020, 08:22:31 am by hangnef »

Offline Seon

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #243 on: May 21, 2020, 07:39:47 pm »
Good luck !

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #244 on: May 26, 2020, 02:02:22 pm »
Spent some time implementing the suggestion about making the "Mixdown done go to Mastering" optional, but I'm having a hard time figuring out how to exit Mixdown mode from the LCD.  Where exactly is it?  Is the process similar for when in Mastering mode?  It's pretty straightforward w/ VGA.

If there isn't a way to exit, those dialogs have to stay unless I add some menu items.
« Last Edit: May 27, 2020, 07:21:48 pm by hangnef »

Offline conecthink

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #245 on: May 28, 2020, 06:02:56 am »
press the mastering button..select mixdown mode and you go back

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #246 on: May 28, 2020, 10:45:33 am »
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press the mastering button..select mixdown mode and you go back

Duh, that sorta makes sense.  I would have thought choosing mixdown while in mixdown would do nothing, didn't think it would prompt to exit.  Looking at the firmware, I can see that now.  It will do an Exit popup if in mixdown already.

Thank you!
« Last Edit: May 28, 2020, 11:00:53 am by hangnef »

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #247 on: June 01, 2020, 09:34:11 am »
Finished this up last night.  Both dialogs are now not shown post mixdown/master.  I will eventually make these system variables which can be toggled.

Offline JUKE179r

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #248 on: July 16, 2020, 03:24:17 am »
Cheers @hangnef for sorting this out!  8)

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #249 on: July 21, 2020, 06:55:08 pm »
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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!

Not sure how I missed this comment, but is it true?  I'm not sure I'll be able to find an older version of the MV8000 firmware to pull that code out even if it were true unfortunately.  Seems only the latest are available online, although I did find a slightly older MV8000 firmware package somewhere.

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #250 on: July 21, 2020, 07:07:56 pm »
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Cheers @hangnef for sorting this out!  8)

No problem at all, it was a change I wanted to make too.  :)

Little progress update, still cranking away at the code.  I'm finding that in addition to understanding the UI and dialogs, another area I needed to focus on was how the inputs were processed, so I've been spending a lot of time reverse engineering how that works.   Understanding that will allow me to make more shortcuts, add new options, etc.  One of the pretty straightforward ideas I had (but certainly not easy to implement) was the use of a shift key to allow the 3 effect knobs to control 6 things (sorta like having pad or qlink banks, but needing a button held).

One of the related projects I did was to build an EXTREMELY old Red Hat Linux system (circa 1999 or so) via virtualization, building a Super-H toolchain in there and building some programs using the SH-3 toolchain to have a frame of reference for all of the newlib (C library) routines.  I managed to figure out a lot of routines in the MV code that I had no idea what they were before.  So, all in all a good exercise!

I've also been a little distracted by some new gear (a Yamaha RX5 drum machine [AMAZING], which I'm circuit bending).  I do spend an hour or so a night though reversing code, it's almost like comfort food now.   :)

I had asked a question a while back about synth differences between the MV and MC909 and I think I have an idea on what the differences might be.  One might be that the polyiphony is just 1 (but since the same chip is used in the MC-909 I think this is an artificial limitation), or it could be the oscillators in the MV code are tailored towards bass sounds.  That can also probably be handled by just adding a few more choices, but I'm thinking it's more that it is a monosynthm so is more suited to bass lines.

Curious to hear others' thoughts...

Offline Seon

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #251 on: July 23, 2020, 06:35:41 pm »
No 16 mono tracks on the last OS of the MV8000 but it was written on a big sticker on the MV itself. So maybe it was possible to use 16 mono on the first OS but I doubt it... why reduce it to only 8 (stereo) tracks afterward ?

Offline Waxdat

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #252 on: August 17, 2020, 10:03:52 am »
Any updates?

Offline echo

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #253 on: September 12, 2020, 12:07:09 pm »
Hello eveybody I think I’m late to this party. Scrolled through all the 17 pages on a hangover today lol and acctully read the most of this over 1 year long post. Great job hangnef, big props!

I’m on MV8000 v3.54. I find myself often using all of the 16 songs in a project, that way there is no load time when I change songs but of cause I get to pay the price when I change projects. Why you might ask and the resaon comes from the MV in itself. When I start a new project, witch I don’t like at all since then I need to start loading patches and samples and naming tracks, normalizing and setting up the fxs and auxes etc. The more positive reason why I use all the songs comes here, then when I open a new song witch I copy from a previous one that I like and I keep the instruments and fx. Then all the tracks are there pre named like kick snr hi sampler sub etc.. whatever I named them and I can just start making music instantly. An other thing that it brings is that as the songs evolve from song 1 to 2 to 3 and so forth the twaeks get more advanced. Parts are getting better and better so usually when I come to song15 and 16 they act as a unique preset and I’m always at that point like now where talking :) things are paned, volume balanced, filtered, lfo:ed, sounds sound good together and so on. Actually sometimes I hit a banger in a couple of minutes that way :o


Here is my wish list for x-mas that in my opinion would improve this monster machine.

• ability to edit many pads at ones /filter/lfo/amp/etc, even loop mode and so on.
this should be possible since if you make an instrument out of one sample then the sampler(a part) behaves this way. in other words if you change one parameter and it changes it for all the pads that are assigned to the instrument

• ability to zoom out more to see the whole song in the sequencer. ATM 16bars is visible.
I find this to be limiting when navigating a longer song.

• yes to PS/2 keyboard I would deffenetly use one if I could. Imagen all the tactile switches that posibly could be used for more shortcuts !!

• Faster way to use the 6 pad banks I hate to have to press the PAD BANK button and theN scroll/arrow/number to change different banks 1-2-3-4-5-6.

• Abbility to move around the loop to next/previuos marker. This would also be great for using the MV live. As for now with shortcut jump+step< > you navigate the markers back and forth, this I use everyday and the abbility to move the loop the same way would be awasome. Alternativly to have many loops (loop1, loop2, loop3 etc) that could be changed on the fly, a little bitt like pad banks, then you could have more controll and flex with your song/live performance.

• would love to be able to mixdown individual tracks even if that would take 30mins, I could go to the store meanwile

 

Cheers and ones again thank you for your great effort hangnef. if there will be a gerilla release for the MV8800/8000 I think there is more people in here then I that  would be willing to donate
« Last Edit: September 12, 2020, 12:14:10 pm by echo »

Offline hangnef

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Re: Possible enhancements/fixes for MV firmware
« Reply #254 on: September 13, 2020, 12:18:21 pm »
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Any updates?

Thanks for the ping, not much as far as changes, still a lot of reversing. 

I'm frustrated with just how hard it is to change stuff, and to be honest, nothing but extremely small changes (like the suppression of those dialog boxes) will go fast, as much as I would like to.  It's a LOT of machine code and replacing even moderate chunks of it requires a ton of work.  Add to that the limited memory space for sticking new code and all the hardcoded addresses and non position independent machine code makes for even more difficulty. 

I will say though that the loading/saving speedup is rock solid.  I'm using it on my non-testing 8800.  I do have 2 more areas to check for improvements here as well, the IDE communications/registers and the FAT filesystem code (daunting to even think of reversing this lol).

I wish I could have licensed the source code from Roland.  I know the JJOS guy has the code for the HW he works on and I'm envious.   :)  If I had that, wow, I could crank you stuff pretty quickly, as with any normal code development project.

I continue to work on this project though and will be making more improvements, but the workflow is literally like swimming in molasses.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2020, 12:27:24 pm by hangnef »