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Roland D110 vs XV 5080
Old 5th December 2017
  #61
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you can con the PCMs into going through the TVF using the
ringmod Structures.
Old 5th December 2017
  #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madtheory View Post
Where are these D-110 drums on New Order's Technique? Drums on that are punchy as ****, that's not something I'd associate with a D-110. Happy to be educated, I've not analysed that album's drums in any great detail.
They are bloody great and you're right, I don't think the main drums are D110, but if you listen to the plinky percussion in tracks like Mr Disco you can hear the high pitched agogo bells, they're either TR626 or D series. Possibly the conga stuff as well? It was released in 1989 and the D110 was from 1988 so it fits. The more obvious D pads and bells on there could be a D50 but listening now though, even the simple bell sound could be a D110. Even the Soundtrack patch at the start could be!



D10 and D110 in the gear list here (and no D50!) Stephen Morris & Gillian Gilbert: The Other Two and You.

Main drums on Technique:

Quote:
"We took the drums into loads of different rooms in the studio, whacked them and recorded them onto DAT". comes the explanation. "We sampled the best sounds into Mike Johnson's Greengate and then we recorded the drums that were on tape into the Master Tracks sequencing program on a Mac using a Syco PSP. It was the first time I've managed to get one of those to work. I've tried triggering it off tape before but never with any success. I always got a delay, but once it's recorded onto a sequencer track and you know what that delay is, you can move everything back so it all lines up. We didn't quantise it that much, we just kept the feel and replaced it with our wazzo drum sounds."

Occasional drum patterns are also worked out on an Apple Macintosh with the aid of Intelligent Music's Upbeat software. Although primarily designed for drum programming, Morris also uses it for writing sequences - especially basslines.

"I love the fact that it's so interactive", he enthuses. "It's like a massive TR808 really, because everything you put into it gets automatically quantised, and there's no way to turn it off. I generally save sequences from it as a MIDI File and load it into Master Tracks for humanisation. The Mac has become increasingly important to us as a songwriting tool. Not quite 50% of this album was written through jamming for ages and picking up on bits we wanted to work on. The rest started out as ideas that someone had got which we then all worked on with the Mac. The great thing about a program like Upbeat is that it's dead easy for anybody to knock out an ace drum riff. It's equally as easy to come up with a wazzing bassline, whereas I couldn't sit down in a practice room and come out with an ace keyboard riff because I'm not really a very good keyboard player. I'm not even that good a drummer I suppose, now you come to mention it."
New Order (MT Apr 89)

Last edited by rockmanrock; 5th December 2017 at 01:20 PM..
Old 5th December 2017
  #63
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The real biggie is that the D50 has PWM.
Old 6th December 2017
  #64
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LFO > PWM
D-110 also has pulse width, but assigns to velocity, not LFO

LFO on D-110 is only pitch and seems to be mainly for mod trig.
if you had a config with ringmod where ..erm.. Modulator Level
is affecting Carrier, and that had LFO pitchmod ... ...
there's probably quite a lot of variation from simpler elements
there. perhaps a lot more with the multipart, layering or zoning.
haven't quite got to that yet.

how many onboard waveforms on the D-50? and what do the
cards offer? (are all those included with the D-05?)

the 2 waveform lists on the D-110 (128 + 128) have a fair bit
of repetition, for the percussion sounds, with bank2 having
them looping.

you wonder how they come to determine what fixed sounds to
put in these machines - i suppose they are designed to offer a
range of transients and harmonic content.(cue fantasy about being
able to load one's own sounds ...)
Old 6th December 2017
  #65
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xanderbeanz's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by TOYZ View Post
I seem to remember reading that the D-50's TVF (Time Variant Filter) could be applied to all waveforms including PCM waveforms whereas on my D-10 it would only work on the sawtooth/pulse.

Of course it's also possible that some features were simply disabled in software in the D-10 for reasons of market differentiation.
TVF is only for saw and pulse on the D50. It was the D70 that had filtering on PCM waves.
Old 6th December 2017
  #66
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gentleclockdivid's Avatar
 

INteresting read about the d50 filter , not being a filter ..and why it's only aplied to the ana waveforms
Roland D-50 "Filter"
Old 6th December 2017
  #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by islandmonkey View Post
LFO > PWM
D-110 also has pulse width, but assigns to velocity, not LFO
True, that's better than nothing, but a big reason the D50 is so great for pads is that you can program so much PWM motion into sustaining sounds. Impossible on the D110.

Quote:
Originally Posted by islandmonkey View Post
how many onboard waveforms on the D-50? and what do the
cards offer? (are all those included with the D-05?)
The D110 has more, and the D50 is lacking in percussion beyond transient type sounds.

The D110 is not completely uninteresting, and for non sustaining sounds, it's arguably superior to the D50 due to it's percussion and multi timbrality.

A good alternative to the D110 that can fill a similar role is the ensoniq SQ-R.
Old 6th December 2017
  #68
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oh yeah remember seeing that thing on the shelves.
ugly thing..
have this playing in the background right now:
YouTube

reminding me how little i like those kinds of sounds
Old 6th December 2017
  #69
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Synth Buddha's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluegreengold View Post

A good alternative to the D110 that can fill a similar role is the ensoniq SQ-R.
I still have a D-110 and I used to have an SQ-R. I wouldn't even compare them. The Ensoniq actually has its moments and a fair bit of charm (to me, at least), while the D-110 is just a black box of complete meh.

(As far as I'm concerned anyway, to be fair.)

(Nice mention of the SQ-R, btw. It was one of my first synths so it kinda holds a special place in my heart, and it's rare to see it mentioned anywhere these days. I get a bit of a nostalgia buzz thinking about that synth...)
Old 6th December 2017
  #70
There are no PCM cards for the D50. Meaning, you can't load extra waveforms. And not to be confused with a PCMCIA card. The card for the D50 is a 256k RAM card containing sysex (basically), it's not a PCMCIA card.
Old 6th December 2017
  #71
Quote:
Originally Posted by gentleclockdivid View Post
INteresting read about the d50 filter , not being a filter ..and why it's only aplied to the ana waveforms
Roland D-50 "Filter"
:LOVE:
Old 6th December 2017
  #72
Gear Nut
 

A little demo of the D-110 (warning Vangelis fan )
Attached Files

d110-demo.mp3 (3.14 MB, 1607 views)

Old 7th December 2017
  #73
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acreil's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by crystalmsc View Post
This sounds really interesting, I always like the effects in there. Hated vintage reverb many years ago, but a big fan now. Is it really this type of goodness in there? Would love to hear more about the similarities
The breakdown is basically like this:

SRV-2000 (1985): Roland's first digital reverb, 16k memory, sample rate is about 24-25 kHz, it's pretty good quality with a respectable number of early reflection taps, but sounds a bit metallic due to the limited delay memory.

DEP-5 (1986): This seems to be a more advanced but less expensive variant of the SRV-2000. 64k memory, sample rate is 32 kHz. It can't be edited as deeply, but I think the algorithms are very similar. The expanded memory allows for larger and less metallic reverb algorithms, and it also has knobs and adds a separate IC for chorus and modulation effects.

DEP-3: Cheaper DEP-5, omits chorus IC, 16k memory.

D-50 (1987): Basic preset effects only, 16k memory, sample rate is 32 kHz. It uses a chorus IC that's different from the one in the DEP-5. This allows for two independent chorus effects. I think the arrangement of the effect blocks might be different too. The D-50 seems to be chorus -> reverb and the DEP-5 is apparently reverb -> chorus

There's not a direct equivalent to the D-50's effects, but the DEP-5 is fairly close and in some ways better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TOYZ View Post
I seem to remember reading that the D-50's TVF (Time Variant Filter) could be applied to all waveforms including PCM waveforms whereas on my D-10 it would only work on the sawtooth/pulse.
No, it's not actually a real filter at all. It seems to be more like the resonant waveforms in the Casio CZ series. The pulse waveform and TVF are synthesized together, and the saw wave is derived from the pulse wave. There's no way to filter the PCM waveforms.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xanderbeanz View Post
Are you saying that with no effects on, the D50 and D10 are tonally the same and the only real difference is the wave ROM?

Is this D10 hatred: “I swear it’s muddier!” “The D50 sounds miles better!” a massive GROUP DELUSION? Perhaps brought about by the 10’s awful UI, or simply one person said it sucked and then everyone bought into it?
The D110's lack of modulation really sucks too. If you did a real apples-to-apples comparison, i.e. a TVF sweep on a square wave, they should be very similar. But the contribution of the D50's LFOs, effects, EQ and waveform ROM are not insignificant. PWM in particular really adds a lot.

I think the D110 also has a couple structures that aren't available in the D50.
Old 7th December 2017
  #74
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evosilica's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by gentleclockdivid View Post
INteresting read about the d50 filter , not being a filter ..and why it's only aplied to the ana waveforms
Roland D-50 "Filter"
Haven't read through all this, but I've also observed that the D50's filter isn't actually a modelled one. There are several quirks that give it away. For example if you play a resonant saw with filter tracking 0, the filter frequency shifts ever so slightly for each note and in the lower notes it suddenly starts to track. Also on the higher notes you're suddenly left with just a sine wave. That's not how a modelled filter would behave.
Also if you play a note and pitch-bend it up an octave, the filter tracks with it and if high enough it aliases badly, but the same pitch without pitchbend, just played an octave higher doesn't.

My guess is that it's just a set of saw wavetables for Reso = 0 and Reso = 127.
Reso values in between are just crossfaded.
Square is generated by adding saw + delayed inverted saw. That would also explain, why the saw is one octave up and there is saw "pwm" (which is just 2 delayed saws).
And it will only pick waveforms in the wavetable, that won't alias too much (unless you use the pitchbender, it obviously doesn't have the processing power to take that into account).
Old 7th December 2017
  #75
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Sapro's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by evosilica View Post
Haven't read through all this, but I've also observed that the D50's filter isn't actually a modelled one. There are several quirks that give it away. For example if you play a resonant saw with filter tracking 0, the filter frequency shifts ever so slightly for each note and in the lower notes it suddenly starts to track. Also on the higher notes you're suddenly left with just a sine wave. That's not how a modelled filter would behave.
Also if you play a note and pitch-bend it up an octave, the filter tracks with it and if high enough it aliases badly, but the same pitch without pitchbend, just played an octave higher doesn't.

My guess is that it's just a set of saw wavetables for Reso = 0 and Reso = 127.
Reso values in between are just crossfaded.
Square is generated by adding saw + delayed inverted saw. That would also explain, why the saw is one octave up and there is saw "pwm" (which is just 2 delayed saws).
And it will only pick waveforms in the wavetable, that won't alias too much (unless you use the pitchbender, it obviously doesn't have the processing power to take that into account).
Thanks for that, interesting and interesting thread: I will have to have a play with mine and see for myself these artificats.

I find that in todays day and age, I ususally use mine as a 4 oscillator synth and avoid the PCM parts.
Old 8th December 2017
  #76
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enossified's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by n3ptun3 View Post
I'm asking what would the benefits of a d110 be over a 5080 ?
Price...I've seen used D110s going for $40, I would never pay over $100 for one.

In all other respects the 5080 is far, far superior...better sound, more sound design options, higher polyphony, sample expansion board capability, you name it. But it costs more.
Old 8th December 2017
  #77
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acreil's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by evosilica View Post
For example if you play a resonant saw with filter tracking 0, the filter frequency shifts ever so slightly for each note and in the lower notes it suddenly starts to track.
I think this also points to it being similar to the CZ resonant waveforms. Since the resonance part is sine sync multiplied by a window function, it inherently tracks pitch, so it has to be scaled over the keyboard to maintain a constant TVF frequency at different pitches. And there's an upper limit there, so the TVF will track pitch on the low end of the keyboard.

Quote:
Also on the higher notes you're suddenly left with just a sine wave. That's not how a modelled filter would behave.
The D50's 32 kHz sample rate is very low, and this needs to be handled very carefully to avoid severe aliasing. Fortunately phase distortion tends to be pretty well behaved this way.

Quote:
My guess is that it's just a set of saw wavetables for Reso = 0 and Reso = 127.
Reso values in between are just crossfaded.
You can't really reduce resonance by crossfading. It would be easy to test, but I don't think it works this way.

Quote:
Square is generated by adding saw + delayed inverted saw. That would also explain, why the saw is one octave up and there is saw "pwm" (which is just 2 delayed saws).
It's not unlikely that the square is generated by separately synthesizing the rising and falling edges, but the saw is definitely derived from the square by multiplying it with a sine. This accounts for both the weird shape of the saw and the octave thing.

Quote:
And it will only pick waveforms in the wavetable, that won't alias too much (unless you use the pitchbender, it obviously doesn't have the processing power to take that into account).
If this is the case you'd find all the waveforms in the wave ROM. There were plenty of other precedents for that kind of thing, and I think Roland probably did use wavetable crossfading in the SAS models (the MKS-20, etc.). But I think it would require an unreasonably large number of waveforms to simulate a resonant filter with variable resonance and a sweepable cutoff frequency. I don't think you'd get a smooth enough sound even if you filled up like half the total waveform ROM (this would be 256k x 8).
Old 9th December 2017
  #78
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evosilica's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
I think this also points to it being similar to the CZ resonant waveforms. Since the resonance part is sine sync multiplied by a window function, it inherently tracks pitch,
Can you explain this a bit more in depth. I don't get why this method would inherently track pitch.

Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
You can't really reduce resonance by crossfading. It would be easy to test, but I don't think it works this way.
Not if you want to recreate a traditional filter, but the D50 is different anyway.
I've attached a file. First half are all 30 Reso values straight out of the D50, second half is me crossfading between reso 0 and reso 30. Sounds pretty much the same to me.
(notice the random polarity flip on the original D50. I don't know what that is for)


Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
It's not unlikely that the square is generated by separately synthesizing the rising and falling edges, but the saw is definitely derived from the square by multiplying it with a sine. This accounts for both the weird shape of the saw and the octave thing.
And the saw PWM thing? With my theory, it would make sense, since the difference between saw and square would be just flipping the polarity of the delayed saw.

Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
If this is the case you'd find all the waveforms in the wave ROM
Have you ever looked inside the ROM?

Really appreciate your input and your blog btw
Attached Files

D50_Resonance.mp3 (1.20 MB, 1174 views)

Old 9th December 2017
  #79
Quote:
Originally Posted by evosilica View Post
Have you ever looked inside the ROM?
Have you? Like in depth with an EPROM reader? I don't think anyone has analysed it, actually.

What acreil means (I think) is that each state of resonance would have to be a standalone PCM wave. Like in your demo. Now it becomes a circular argument... the resonant waves are not in ROM, because the PCM can't go through the filter, because it's not a filter. Plus there isn't enough memory to hold enough of them
Old 9th December 2017
  #80
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i read somewhere that it was calculated per increment.
you can't modulate the setting without re-keying the note.

the more you go through the implementation the more you
see how much was considered. i don't know much but the
fact that you can vary the saw pulsewidth means that it's
base on the square - or the other way round.

i mean, i'm interested in (the D-110) as an early implementation
of their multitimbral sysex structuring; it seems like they learnt
stuff there that they resolved and improved on later. you always
get good hindsight once you get things working.

i mean, why release synths with bland factory presets, if you
haven't got some thinking behind that? on what the users
will do with it? a lot of the comments here reveal that people
don't actually know.(i mean, forget me, i'm a button pusher
casualty)
Old 9th December 2017
  #81
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evosilica's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by madtheory View Post
Have you? Like in depth with an EPROM reader? I don't think anyone has analysed it, actually.
No I haven't. And I didn't know that nobody ever has. I was just asking - no offence.

Quote:
Originally Posted by madtheory View Post
What acreil means (I think) is that each state of resonance would have to be a standalone PCM wave. Like in your demo.
What I've tried to show with my demo was that you could only store the waves for 0 and 30 resonance and then crossfade in between and get away with it. Seems noone agrees. Fine.
I don't understand what you mean with the rest of your post.

Edit: Regarding memory: To store 2 seconds of different filter single cycle waveforms at 32KHz 8bit you'd only need 64KB. 2 seconds would be plenty for a wavetable filter emulation.

Last edited by evosilica; 9th December 2017 at 08:57 PM..
Old 10th December 2017
  #82
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acreil's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by evosilica View Post
Can you explain this a bit more in depth. I don't get why this method would inherently track pitch.
The phase of the sine sync (i.e. the oscillation of the resonance) is derived from the oscillator phase, so the cutoff is a multiple of the fundamental frequency. The Casio CZ series has a maximum here too.

Quote:
Not if you want to recreate a traditional filter, but the D50 is different anyway.
I've attached a file. First half are all 30 Reso values straight out of the D50, second half is me crossfading between reso 0 and reso 30. Sounds pretty much the same to me.
Yeah but if you compare the waveforms they're not the same. The D50's resonance dies out more quickly at lower resonance values (like a real filter), so it isn't simply attenuated.

Quote:
And the saw PWM thing? With my theory, it would make sense, since the difference between saw and square would be just flipping the polarity of the delayed saw.
This doesn't account for the shape of the saw wave. If you're making PWM from two sawtooth waves, they both have a linear slope that cancels out. But the D50's saw seems to be a cosine segment (0 to pi).

Quote:
Have you ever looked inside the ROM?
No, I think the ROM has been ripped before but Roland will immediately get it taken down.

Quote:
Really appreciate your input and your blog btw
Thanks, I'm trying to write more but it's quite slow.

Quote:
Originally Posted by madtheory View Post
What acreil means (I think) is that each state of resonance would have to be a standalone PCM wave. Like in your demo. Now it becomes a circular argument... the resonant waves are not in ROM, because the PCM can't go through the filter, because it's not a filter. Plus there isn't enough memory to hold enough of them
Actually you'd need one complete waveform for each cutoff frequency and each resonance value.

But I dunno, maybe it is possible that it does use wavetables. I see spurious high harmonics on the spectrogram, which might indicate a stored wavetable. The resonance is at the 64th harmonic. Assuming that's the highest cutoff frequency, and assuming it's critically sampled, each stored waveform would be 128 samples. If there's one cutoff step for each harmonic, that's 64 stored waveforms for each resonance value. There are 30 resonance values, so 128 * 64 * 30 = 245760, or just about half the waveform ROM. This would be not really different from Ensoniq's transwaves, etc. but it's pretty wasteful when the waveform ROM is so small. The IC can only address 1M x 8 at the most.

Anyway I don't own a D50 or D110 or whatever and don't really want one (I briefly screwed around with an MT-32 and wasn't all that impressed). So beyond test recordings I can't really do much to reverse engineer it. It's certainly one of the more interesting and mysterious ICs out there, though.
Old 10th December 2017
  #83
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realtrance's Avatar
 

You have to remember that 64k RAM cost $400 in 1983; it was a miracle for a synth to release with 256k! I still remember envying 128k Macs......

The problems in that environment were quite different from what they are now.
Old 10th December 2017
  #84
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acreil's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by realtrance View Post
You have to remember that 64k RAM cost $400 in 1983; it was a miracle for a synth to release with 256k! I still remember envying 128k Macs......
Well, these are PROMs, which are considerably cheaper than DRAM. The D50's 512k x 8 is NES cartridge territory and extremely small for a rompler. 2M x 16 was typical like a year later.
Old 10th December 2017
  #85
This topic is so wrong i don't even know where to begin.
Old 10th December 2017
  #86
Quote:
Originally Posted by evosilica View Post
No I haven't. And I didn't know that nobody ever has. I was just asking - no offence.
None taken, and none intended. Just exploring by questioning. Thank you, I'm learning a lot here
Old 10th December 2017
  #87
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realtrance's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
Well, these are PROMs, which are considerably cheaper than DRAM. The D50's 512k x 8 is NES cartridge territory and extremely small for a rompler. 2M x 16 was typical like a year later.
Yes things moved fast.

I remember reprogramming EPROMs for the Morrow Designs CP/M users group; we sold kits to upgrade to huge, 10MB hard disks.
Old 10th December 2017
  #88
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evosilica's Avatar
 

@ realtrance D50 came out in 1987, not 1983.

Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
Anyway I don't own a D50 or D110 or whatever and don't really want one (I briefly screwed around with an MT-32 and wasn't all that impressed). So beyond test recordings I can't really do much to reverse engineer it. It's certainly one of the more interesting and mysterious ICs out there, though.
If you want me to do some specific test recordings that could confirm some theories I'd happily deliver.

I do have to agree with Don Solaris that this has gotten way OT here Sorry
Old 10th December 2017
  #89
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realtrance's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by evosilica View Post
@ realtrance D50 came out in 1987, not 1983.



If you want me to do some specific test recordings that could confirm some theories I'd happily deliver.

I do have to agree with Don Solaris that this has gotten way OT here Sorry
To add (I know when the D10 came out):

Memory Prices 1957 to 2017

Now you can see exactly what memory prices were.

This is not off-topic as memory was a significant constraint on what could be done during the period the compared synths were manufactured, and thus influenced the design and resulting sound and interface, given the necessary historical tradeoffs.
Old 15th December 2017
  #90
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acreil's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by evosilica View Post
If you want me to do some specific test recordings that could confirm some theories I'd happily deliver.
Thanks, but I have a few test recordings already and at the moment I'm not really inclined to go down that rabbit hole. In this case I'm not sure how much can really be determined by analyzing recordings anyway.

I did get a DEP-5 though, and I think it's a really nice spacey reverb. It does large spaces much better than the SRV-2000.
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