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Kurzweil PC3K - So I bought one - questions / thoughts
Old 9th August 2013
  #31
Gear Guru
 
EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
1) I don't remember of such limitation in PC3... There is a limitation on maximum number of user objects (which Song files are), but there's no limitation on object size, per se, that I know of. So I think it is safe to assume you can load much more than 64K, but please take this with a grain of salt.

2) That one doesn't ring a bell, skimming through the manual doesn't mention this feature, can't find it in the latest OS either, so I'm afraid you can't do that on PC3.
Old 9th August 2013 | Show parent
  #32
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Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilDragon ➑️
1) I don't remember of such limitation in PC3... There is a limitation on maximum number of user objects (which Song files are), but there's no limitation on object size, per se, that I know of. So I think it is safe to assume you can load much more than 64K, but please take this with a grain of salt.

2) That one doesn't ring a bell, skimming through the manual doesn't mention this feature, can't find it in the latest OS either, so I'm afraid you can't do that on PC3.
I downloaded the PC3K manual v.2 (from June 7, 2011) and under SONG MODE: The STATS Page, it appears as though there is a 110K file limitation, unless I'm misunderstanding what is presented.

Do you read it that way?

Can you go beyond the 110K limit using multiple RIFFS?

Confusing.
Old 9th August 2013
  #33
Gear Guru
 
EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
That's the number of MIDI events, not kilobytes, that PC3 can have in its RAM event pool.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PC3 Manual
The STATS page is a display only page that shows the status of the PC3K event pool. The event pool is used by all the sequences loaded at a given time in the system. These include: the current song, the compare song buffer, and up to 16 riffs.
Each setup zone can have its own RIFF, so in theory one setup could call to 16 different RIFFs. But in any case one can never have more than 110000 events stored in the event pool, which (I think) doesn't mean that the MIDI file object stored in the machine can't be a large file. It's all down to event count.
Old 11th September 2013 | Show parent
  #34
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Anybody know if there is a store in Chicago that has a PC3k to play? I'm trying to decide between a Nord Stage 2 and a PC3K8 and nobody here in Kansas City stocks them. I will be in Chicago later this year, so I thought I might have better luck there. I know Gand has Nord in stock, but I'm still wanting to play the Kurzweil. Any help is much appreciated. Thanks.
Old 19th September 2013
  #35
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Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Got one yesterday! Yeah!

So, as a former K2500XS owner, let me tell you my first impressions.

I do in fact like that it is smaller than the former workstations, and weighs some 25 lbs. less.

The wooden end caps are very cool looking.

I love the ramped LCD display with INFO button! The angle is superior to read, and the INFO button on what things are modifying other things, is tremendous! LOVE IT!

The weighted keys are a bit heavier than my former Kurzweil, which I was not sure how I was going to respond to this, having read up on it before getting this. Well, I like it a lot. The more I play it, the feel is lovely. From the tech specs, FATAR makes 3 grades, Heavy, Medium, and Light, and this is the Medium grade. Great choice.

I installed the KORE 64 option and have not yet had a chance to listen to the already 1100 sounds, but with Kore added, it added another 300+ sounds (drums sets, guitars, horns), and I'm totally stoked.

A quick listening to about 100 sounds told me this: The VA-1 synth sounds are just incredible. I love the anti-aliasing oscillators. You can portamento a sound from the lowest to the highest note, pefectly, with no glitching at all. WOW.

I was very disappointed with the piano sounds that came in this machine. I thought they would be great, but they're horrible. I was struck with horror at my discovery that all the piano sounds I tried (maybe 15) were not at all good. THANK GOD for backward compatibility! I uploaded my old Piano samples from the older Kurzweil days and I'm in heaven again! I cannot say enough about the value of good samples. I go back & forth between a simple 16 MB Young Chang sample (from Sweetwater), and a couple different companies' 64 MB Steinways. FANTASTIC. Kurzweil should have paid to have put these samples into the machine so that new, potential buyers would have a freak'n fantastic experience.

Anyway, I'm sitting here at Denny's with the owner's manual cracked reading up on the new things that I am unfamiliar with. By the way, as people become aware from reading and speaking with us (Kurzweil diehards), we all know that Kurzweil is a 100% professional's machine, and nothing comes within light years of it.
Old 19th September 2013
  #36
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steelyfan's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I've had my PC3 for over a couple years now, it's amazing the things I've learned it can do. The sounds and functionality are impressive, and learning how to work within the sequencer is a game changer for how to approach creating music and manipulating sounds. I still find setup mode to be a bit glitchy, but I'm not running the latest OS. These are wicked machines, really enjoy the programming.
Old 19th September 2013
  #37
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Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Oh, Dragon,

I wrote Kurzweil back when we had that last conversation and they wrote me back, regarding the size limitation of the MIDI file that can be played. Of course, it is dependent on event things, like you had stated, but the answer was, from them, to be safe, somewhere in the neighborhood of about 440K, which is about 7x larger than what my former workstation could handle.

So for the type of work that I will be doing, that means I can sequence anything imaginable while I'm playing live over that sequence.
Old 19th September 2013
  #38
Gear Guru
 
EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Thanks for the info about MIDI file sizes, Toddskins. I appreciate it.


BTW, my favourite from factory pianos is 842 Pro Piano. I slightly tweaked it and it's a good workhorse now. If you want I'll send you my tweaked patch.
Old 19th September 2013
  #39
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bobule's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
wierd, i love the 76key pc3, the electric pianos have served me well on recordings and for band work. i really cannot praise the pc3 enough.

i compared with a kronos (sounded sterile but very hifi) and the nord (nice sounds but sooo limited), i dunno might just be a taste thing - we like what we like!
Old 19th September 2013
  #40
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Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Dragon, check your PM. Email there.

Bobule, I'm not criticizing at all, the electric keyboard sounds. I agree that the ones I have heard already are great. I'm critical only of the acoustic piano sounds, which of course, are going to disappoint seeing that the ROM size must be as small as they are. Uploading the sample set of an entire recorded Grand Piano (16MB up to 64MB) is far superior, especially if the engineers knew their craft. I have dumped money on piano samples that were horrible, but I have a couple that are stellar. This is the beauty of being able to import Samples into the PC3K8. A must have for me.
Old 20th September 2013
  #41
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Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Have you found a good dust cover that fits the Kurzweil PC3X or PC3K8, anybody?
Old 20th September 2013
  #42
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EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Will PM you the sound tomorrow, Todd.
Old 21st September 2013 | Show parent
  #43
Lives for gear
 
🎧 5 years
Just curious- as I have a K2500S- what can you do with triple VAST that you can't do with single- and do people really use all those layers, or is it so time consuming people just use single VAST anyway?
Old 21st September 2013
  #44
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Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Lune,

I can partially answer your question, since I have no experience as of yet on programming these multiple (triple or cascading) algorithms, BUT I just happen to be on the chapter right now dealing with Cascade Algorithm programming (which allows you send the signal of one algorithm into that of another up to 31x) and it's really easy to do, so my guess is that for sound creation/programmers of any merit, WILL use this availability.

Not to mention the use of the Sound Tower desktop editor, which again I have not used yet, but just today installed it on my PC and opened it up, and it, too, makes things far easier to get a handle on.

Speaking of the editor, guys, have any of you installed it into Windows 7 64-bit? It states that it is for Windows XP and Vista. Can do Win 7 ?
Old 21st September 2013
  #45
Gear Guru
 
EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
It can.
Old 21st September 2013 | Show parent
  #46
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years
A few comments from a long-time PC3K8 owner:

If you're in the US you can't beat the $5.00 black fitted sheets at Wal-Mart for dust-covers. I'm tempted to remove the Wal-Mart labels and sell them as custom-made keyboard covers for $30 a piece on ebay.

When I hear that the PC3K's Setup mode is "glitchy" that generally means that channels and controllers are being used inconsistently. Other workstations don't give you the wealth of options that Kurzweils do, you have a fixed number of channels and global controller assignments and thus can't create problems by having controller assignments and active channels change as you step through your Setups. If you're having sounds "disappear" or having controllers seem to behave erratically I suggest starting with a template Setup with all your zones and controller assignments laid out and use that as the basis of all your programming. I have created thousands of PC3K8 Setups using this method and have yet to encounter a single "glitch".

The one unfortunate glitch that PC3K owners have to be aware of is that the Flash sample RAM doesn't always make proper contact with its holder which can lead to corrupted or distorted playback. Unfortunately all PC3Ks need to have the Flash chip removed and cleaned with De-Oxit. (Yes, it would be nice if this was done at the #$(*&#$ factory!) Also I've found that static electricity will sometimes degrade the quality of the flash samples, usually re-booting will fix this.

The other issue to be aware of is that loading samples takes a long time, and it's usually a good idea to do a hard re-set before loading a large bank of samples. I have found the sample defragmenting function to be a train-wreck, and suggest that no-one ever use it. The only reliable way to clear sample memory fragmentation is to save the entire file after deleting whatever samples you have to get rid of, doing a hard reset and then reloading. (Yes, this takes hours.)
Old 22nd September 2013
  #47
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Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Thanks for sharing, Techeverlasting. As I just discovered too, when I loaded my piano samples into the PC3K8, they take a very long time to load. Way longer than they did on the K2500XS. One would have thought that with the modern USB thumb drive, that it would be faster. Not even close for some strange reason. 'Makes me realize that if I wanted to change samples during a gig, that it might not even get accomplished between sets. 20 minutes might not cover it, to upload a new 128 MB in samples. <shaking head>

I just last night came across the "Defrag fucntion" in one of the chapters. 'Was wondering about that, so I'm glad you wrote what you just did.

Regarding black fitted sheets, do you mean a twin-size bed fitted sheet? Certainly that would be too big for this keyboard. Do you fold a few times and then use it? I'm not familiar with Walmart stitching their name on bed sheets. What gives?

And for all the talk about how Kurzweil kept making improvements on the KB3 programs, I'm not liking any of the ones I have played so far. I think the stock ones from my K2500XS were superior. But perhaps if I can get a good 12-hour sleep, sit down at the keyboard fully refreshed, I can delve deeper into all the controls and maybe make the sounds I remember. My K2500XS had a perfect KB3 organ for the beginning of the song "Green Eyed Lady". The ones I have heard on the PC3K8 don't come close. And I used to have a KB3 called "Full Drawbars" which was just perfect. Seems like that organ preset is not on this new machine.

I'll dig into it though.
Old 22nd September 2013
  #48
Gear Addict
 
Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Okay, patch 899 "B3 Midrange" is what I was looking for, for Full Drawbars. I need to reset the drawbar settings so that when that patch comes on, it's already got full sound, as opposed to the factory setting. This 899 is actually a quite excellent sound, I do think better than my old K2500. It's got a type of life that's difficult to describe when you start turning on the switches.

Question: In the KB3 editor, under MISC the Rotary Leslie can be turned on/off by the Sustain pedal (or any pedal). Is there a way to get the pedal to function as a momentary switch so that it goes off the moment your foot comes off the pedal, rather than complete on/off? The way the new setting is, you have to step on the pedal twice to get it to its original state. I had momentary capability in the K2500. Can do?
Old 22nd September 2013
  #49
Gear Guru
 
EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
It's not because of USB drive - it's the flash memory they used. It's non-volatile, very high speed reads, but slow writes.


And oh hell no - the new KB3 mode is leaps and bounds better sounding than K-series KB3. Leaps and bounds. Especially the Leslie effect (the biggest Double Leslie FX chain does take 14 out of 16 FX units PC3 has, though. A price to pay.).

Don't think there's a way to make the sustain pedal work as a momentary Leslie switch, though. Even though sustain pedal ITSELF is set to Momentary mode in the control setup. Seems that's the way Kurzweil coded KB3 this time round.
Old 22nd September 2013 | Show parent
  #50
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years
I'm using black twin fitted sheets for dust covers. Yes, the sheets are a bit big but the fitted elastic makes them fit nicely. Of course you can spend eight times as much for the same protection with a "keyboard dust-cover" if you'd prefer.

Forget about loading different sample sets during a gig on the PC3Ks. It's just not going to ever happen, unless your gigs all have two hour long breaks. The trick with the PC3Ks is to find a combination of internal sounds and user samples that will cover everything you need for the entire night. Given the wealth of great material in the PC3K ROM and all the well constructed libraries available in K2xx, Akai S1000 and Roland S700 formats this is quite doable.

I'm finding that the PC3K combines so well with the Roland Integra-7 that one would think the two machines were designed for each other. In fact I would advise any PC3K owner to skip the astonishingly useless "Kore 64" expansion and save that money towards the purchase of an Integra-7. The Integra-7 has incredible Grand Pianos, what I think is a much better sounding drawbar organ set and electric guitars to infinity. Also a complete V-drums module built-in. The Integra-7 is lacking in the number of available user performances and general programming flexibility, but the PC3K will give you 2000+ sixteen-zone Setups.
Old 23rd September 2013
  #51
Gear Addict
 
Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Question: I cannot figure out if the 8 Program buttons above Categories, are programmable? It seems like they are sometimes, but I have attempted to apply them in both Program or Setup editors, and they are ignored when I use intuitive editing.

Yet, on Setup # 3 Techno Substance, if I start the song by hold down a note, i.e. G3, and just let it play for 20 seconds, nothing else happens. But as soon as I click the blue lighted Program button 1, 2 or 3, new parts are added in. When I turn off those lights (blue light goes off), the parts stops playing.

Where is this being programmed from?

And why don't those buttons get applied like controller switches in the Editors (Program or Setup)?

And in a lot of Setups, those buttons do nothing, yet when clicked their blue LED's stay lit. And when you turn Turn the Select Wheel to choose a different patch, those Blue LED's stay lit (do not go off as you move from Setup #3 on up through other Setups). The owner's manual seems quiet on the matter.

?
Old 23rd September 2013
  #52
Gear Guru
 
EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
In Setup mode they're programmable (see SWPRG1-8 pages). You cannot use intuitive editor to select them for editing.
Old 23rd September 2013
  #53
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Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Ahh, okay.

As I'm reviewing it now, so does each zone have access to all 8 SW PRGs?

So zone 1 could use SW PRG 1 for one purpose, and zone 2 could use the same SW PRG 1 for a different purpose?

16 zones utilizing as many as 8 SW PGRs, plus the SW and ARP buttons, plus the 3 pedals, etc.

This is very cool.
Old 23rd September 2013 | Show parent
  #54
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years
Yes, it's extremely cool.

Each of the 16 zones can have different controller assignments for the wheels, nine sliders, eight program buttons, two expression pedals, three switch pedals and more. Many of these controllers can have different control scales, Entry and Exit values, and the program buttons can even send different controllers for the on and off positions.

These are incredibly powerful and deep MIDI controllers. It's no wonder people sometimes have problems with inconsistent MIDI control assignments when making chains of Setups.
Old 24th September 2013
  #55
Gear Addict
 
Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
It's been awhile since I programmed my old Kurzweil which I sold a couple years ago. Can you refresh my memory on how to get a slider I affecting the wetness of a Reverb in a Program insert, to do the same functionality when that Program is in a Setup so that the same slider I affects the wet/dry mix of that Program's reverb, from Setup mode?

What are the steps? I've been drawing a blank on this issue for hours.
Old 24th September 2013
  #56
Gear Guru
 
EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
If you want your sliders to do the same things they are meant to do in Program mode for all programs you load in the setup, just start making your setup using 126 Control Setup as a template, then save it under a different name.
Old 24th September 2013
  #57
Gear Addict
 
Toddskins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Thanks so much. You guys have been so helpful. Dragon, your answer steered me in the right direction. I realize now how the Setup sliders are programmed via the MIDI 21 thru 28 numbering scheme. I hope you have not minded my asking all these questions. Is there a User Group on the web for PC3K8 users, or I can just continue to contact you whenever I have questions as my individual teachers <grin>? lol
Old 24th September 2013
  #58
Gear Guru
 
EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
You can register on Mastering VAST forums, there's lots of helpful info there. Google it
Old 25th March 2014 | Show parent
  #59
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
kore64 and soundtower

Question: If i want to make a new setup using Kore64 programs inside soundtower, i have a problem with it. When i choose a standard program for a new zone it will change to the sound instantly but this not applies to the Kore64 program sounds. Soundtower just don`t load it as a zone.

I have setup the Kore64 properly, i can switch to kore64 sounds in soundtower and play with them. I can`t seem to use Kore64 programs in a setup.. Do you know what to do?

cheers, Tim
Old 25th March 2014
  #60
Gear Guru
 
EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Latest version of ST editor?
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