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Synths in the Sun...?
Old 28th September 2020
  #1
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jiffybox's Avatar
Synths in the Sun...?

Thanks to the topsy-turvy tumultuous 2020, my latest studio set up is in my new home as opposed to my usual dark, secluded rented studio spaces of the past. I’m doing quite a bit of sun dodging in my new room so I’ve put up a little protective film on the windows and I try to keep the shades down for most of the day, but it gets a little...murky after a while.

Some things just have to be near the window due to space limitations, is gear in sunlight bad for the gear? Bad for synths? I’m not thinking of keeping my Fantom and grooveboxes in the sun all day every day, but for when I do need a shot of vitamin D in the room and I want to keep the covers off my gear to enjoy their oh-so-pretty design, is this sort of thing gonna cause a problem outside of maybe more dust and potentially fading the finishes? Both of which I don’t necessarily want.

I see a lot of your gear near windows in your slutty set-up pics so I’m just wondering the GS consensus.

Is this okay?
Attached Thumbnails
Synths in the Sun...?-4b02a6d3-86d9-47f8-b0f9-8c1caa02c3c6.jpg   Synths in the Sun...?-fcc76dad-9792-4a6d-8ee8-66ba3ddda55c.jpg  
Old 28th September 2020
  #2
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kpatz's Avatar
The UV may fade the finish over time and yellow the keys and heat build-up could be a problem if you're using them with the sun beating on them (though keeping the room climate controlled should make the heat build-up less of a problem).

I'd get opaque dust covers to keep on them when not in use, or keep the shades closed, just to keep them happy and healthy longer.

UV blocking film on the windows can help too.
Old 28th September 2020
  #3
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They'll turn into a Salvador Dali painting, like the Wicked Witch of the Vinyl Record.
Old 28th September 2020
  #4
I installed opaque gray vinyl blinds from Ikea on the glass patio doors which front my home studio and master bedroom. Most modern windows have UV-protection, but still . . .
Old 28th September 2020
  #5
Gear Maniac
 
SawneyBean's Avatar
 

Looks like you've got some UV screen on there already but no harm in showing others how its done...

Old 28th September 2020
  #6
I bought some microfiber towels off eBay in a few different sizes to throw over gear that gets hit by the sun through my 'studio' window. The lower sun angle in winter brings more of it into the room, but I also want the sun for its warmth, so that's my simple mitigation strategy.

Standard glass blocks almost all UV-B and UV-C (ie far ultraviolet) but it can let anything from a little bit to a fair bit of UV-A through depending on the specifics of its manufacture, treatments, coatings etc. However, even just the direct heat (IR) of the sun on plastic (esp black plastic) or on displays panels etc is enough to be of concern I think. Black gear can get hot to the touch and you can even hear the case clicking as it expands sometimes - can't be great for it. Anyway, a cover of some kind, especially a non-black cover, makes a huge difference.
Old 28th September 2020
  #7
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greenlights's Avatar
In my experience, the sun is no good for synths. I had a Blofeld keyboard that got sun spots just from the little holes where the string rope holds the blinds together. I setup some thick curtains now to stop any sunlight from coming through.
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #8
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jiffybox's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by greenlights View Post
In my experience, the sun is no good for synths. I had a Blofeld keyboard that got sun spots just from the little holes where the string rope holds the blinds together. I setup some thick curtains now to stop any sunlight from coming through.
This is the kind of thing I assume might happen. I’ve really never had any gear in the sun (why are our studios and rehearsal spaces always so dark?!), so part of me thinks I’m being paranoid about even a moment of the Sun’s rays on gear but the other part thinks I’m overreacting and, like, what about all those synth bands that play in the daylight at Glasto and Coachella?

Personally I have an aversion to the Sun which I blame on living for 12 years under the shade of the skyscrapers of midtown Manhattan. I grew up in California FFS But I also have an aversion to rooms with all the shades down in the daylight. Too meth den for me. I’m a synths in the dark kinda guy. Guess I just have to be Sun vigilant, though, I REALLY don’t want to fry the Fantom.
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #9
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jiffybox's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by SawneyBean View Post
Looks like you've got some UV screen on their already but not harm in showing others how its done...

I’ve got some, but not my entire window pane. Curious as to how effective UV screen is to block harmful rays from gear.
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #10
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jiffybox's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by ambiguous signal View Post
I bought some microfiber towels off eBay in a few different sizes to throw over gear that gets hit by the sun though my 'studio' window. The lower sun angle in winter brings more of it into the room, but I also want the sun for its warmth, so that's my simple mitigation strategy.

Standard glass blocks almost all UV-B and UV-C (ie far ultraviolet) but it can let anything from a little bit to a fair bit of UV-A through depending on the specifics of its manufacture, treatments, coatings etc. However, even just the direct heat (IR) of the sun on plastic (esp black plastic) or on displays panels etc is enough to be of concern I think. Black gear can get hot to the touch and you can even hear the case clicking as it expands sometimes - can't be great for it. Anyway, a cover of some kind, especially a non-black cover, makes a huge difference.
Yeah, I’m noticing as the fall/winter approaches that the Sun is getting lower and it’s definitely finding its way into my studio more and more. Yikes with the black cases expanding I guess I’m concerned too with how the Sun would affect, say, the Fantom’s touchscreen. I order my gear covers from DigitalDeckCovers.com so hopefully they’ll keep out some of the rays, too.
Old 28th September 2020
  #11
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flat's Avatar
I have a large window in my small studio, I installed a decent venetian blind and have also recently installed a roller blind in front of it. This gives me many options to divert or block light, depending on its brilliance.

If its really bright and in the day time, I put linen keyboard covers behind the synths that are in direct sun light [like the Nords in pic]

I sometimes cringe when I go in there and see blazing sunlight in the JP6.
Attached Thumbnails
Synths in the Sun...?-1.jpg  
Old 28th September 2020
  #12
Quote:
Originally Posted by flat View Post
I sometimes cringe when I go in there and see blazing sunlight in the JP6.
I am still trying to find out the exact stand that you have been using for years. The one holding the JP's. It's something about that angle of the upper tier vs lower tier that makes it perfect.
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #13
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flat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Solaris View Post
I am still trying to find out the exact stand that you have been using for years. The one holding the JP's. It's something about that angle of the upper tier vs lower tier that makes it perfect.


On the top tier, and at that angle, the JP6 is almost touching the bottom synth. Apart from that its a very sturdy stand.

https://on-stage.com/products/view/12763
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #14
Quote:
Originally Posted by flat View Post
On the top tier, and at that angle, the JP6 is almost touching the bottom synth. Apart from that its a very sturdy stand.
Thanks! What would be the rough angle value that you use?
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #15
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flat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Solaris View Post
Thanks! What would be the rough angle value that you use?
Will measure at lunch break and get back to you.

[Sorry OP for going a little Off topic]
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jiffybox View Post
Yeah, I’m noticing as the fall/winter approaches that the Sun is getting lower and it’s definitely finding its way into my studio more and more.
At least the lower winter sun goes through more pollution (er, atmosphere) on the way to the studio. Do you notice how the difference between sun and shade doesn't feel as drastic this time of the year (even when it's warm out) vs, like, June? I wonder if the UV also gets attenuated, or if it makes it through full blast?

I've got a trash bin and a kayak that are roto-molded from plastic pellets, and they can withstand decades of sun. I also had a thin plastic tote on the deck, completely discolored and brittle. It cracked if you poked it, after just a few years of weathering.
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #17
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flat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Solaris View Post
Thanks! What would be the rough angle value that you use?
Here you go sir Don.

Tried to get base reference angle from window shelf on horizon, but bit out. Says 41 degrees but more like 39ish.

Tbh, once you sit in front of the synth, the perfect angle will make itself apparent to you. Its quite an easy stand to adjust.

Synths in the Sun...?-angle1.jpg
Attached Thumbnails
Synths in the Sun...?-angle1.jpg  
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Solaris View Post
Thanks! What would be the rough angle value that you use?
forty five fckn degrees mate

edit: oh no, he beat me to it.

venetian blinds must be best for this. you can get quite snazzy aluminium perforated ones that look modern, and like flat says, double it up with a roller blind for nighttime blackout (and insulation).
Old 28th September 2020
  #19
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realtrance's Avatar
 

I would keep anything rubberized out of the sun. The UV will break it down.
Old 28th September 2020
  #20
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'beige' light grey plastic will turn old-amiga nicotine yellow.
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #21
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zerocrossing's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jiffybox View Post
This is the kind of thing I assume might happen. I’ve really never had any gear in the sun (why are our studios and rehearsal spaces always so dark?!), so part of me thinks I’m being paranoid about even a moment of the Sun’s rays on gear but the other part thinks I’m overreacting and, like, what about all those synth bands that play in the daylight at Glasto and Coachella?

Personally I have an aversion to the Sun which I blame on living for 12 years under the shade of the skyscrapers of midtown Manhattan. I grew up in California FFS But I also have an aversion to rooms with all the shades down in the daylight. Too meth den for me. I’m a synths in the dark kinda guy. Guess I just have to be Sun vigilant, though, I REALLY don’t want to fry the Fantom.
Lights and heat can be especially hard on plastic and rubber parts too. Modern polymers seem a lot better.

I think you did the right thing by putting up protective film on the windows, but heat buildup can be a problem even if it’s not that extreme, if it swings a lot. The heating/cooling cycle can ultimately produce micro fractures in circuit boards. My old S2 just had to go to the shop to get the traces re-soldered and the board seemed in perfect shape when I got it and it’s pretty far from a window, and I’m in the perpetually 70 degree SF Bay Area. (Though I don’t know where it spent most of its life... and the SF Bay Area is no longer perpetually 70 degrees. )
Old 28th September 2020
  #22
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abruzzi's Avatar
 

yeah UV is the main culprit to worry about. I don't know how much UV you get in Montana, its mostly dependent on elevation and moisture, but down here in New Mexico it can bleach just about anything, and turn plastic and rubber to dust. Fortunately UV is pretty easy to block. Even a light muslin curtain is sufficient. As a hobby I work with UV sensitive chemicals (alt process photo materials) and I can work with it in a relatively bright room in my house without it turning blue (potassium ferricyanide) so I'd think your UV film on the windows would be sufficient.
Old 28th September 2020
  #23
direct sunlight will kill a Virus TI... especially thise white ones.
Old 29th September 2020
  #24
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jiffybox's Avatar
Do Decksavers have any kind of UV coating? And now I’m curious as to the protection of all my gear covers. Really never had to think about this much before. @ flat I would FLIP THE F OUT if I saw a Jupiter 6 in the Sun! But you are giving me the idea of maybe putting a second lighter shade behind the shades that were installed when I moved in, they’re double sided Levellors so from the outside they look white but on the inside they’re a kind of ugly brown, really dulls the room.

Maybe if I look into a thinner white shade that has some level of protection I can add a little more light to the room. Something like the muslin @ abruzzi mentions.

@ zerocrossing I grew up in Berkeley and I miss those temperate days of my youth but now the Bay Area is like 2049 Blade Runner so...

@ realtrance yeah with all the talk on GS of sticky rubber coating on pots, some of that has to be environmental.

I worked part time in a guitar shop here in Montana recently and we made SUCH a big deal of selling humidifier sponges with all the guitars because it gets so dry in Montana, especially in the winter. Between humidity, lack of humidity, and climate control, taking care of gear is pretty involved, as it should be, but like I said I’ve always had similar studio spaces that didn’t really vary too much with climate or light so I’ve never put this much thought into it. I appreciate the insight, folks.
Old 29th September 2020
  #25
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syntonica's Avatar
I've always had horizontal blinds with 2-3" slats that could be partially opened when the room was in use and fully closed when not. West facing windows are the worst as you get the intense afternoon sun directly.

As I am a book seller, I have to keep direct sunlight off the spines at all costs as reds go pink and blues go pale violet in no time! Plastics, even modern ones, will bleach, discolored and go brittle as well.
Old 29th September 2020 | Show parent
  #26
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jiffybox's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by syntonica View Post
I've always had horizontal blinds with 2-3" slats that could be partially opened when the room was in use and fully closed when not. West facing windows are the worst as you get the intense afternoon sun directly.

As I am a book seller, I have to keep direct sunlight off the spines at all costs as reds go pink and blues go pale violet in no time! Plastics, even modern ones, will bleach, discolored and go brittle as well.
We’re dealing with that in the new place, as well. Bookshelves and one-of-a-kind framed artwork are all out of the Sun’s reach. For now, anyway. For some reason it’s harder to hide a Fantom from the Sun than a bookshelf.
Old 29th September 2020
  #27
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jiffybox's Avatar
And yeah @ syntonica i really wish I had those kinds of blinds. My current shades are just solid with no slats so I don’t even have the option to open or close them slightly. The Sun really has me by the balls.
Old 29th September 2020 | Show parent
  #28
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syntonica's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jiffybox View Post
We’re dealing with that in the new place, as well. Bookshelves and one-of-a-kind framed artwork are all out of the Sun’s reach. For now, anyway. For some reason it’s harder to hide a Fantom from the Sun than a bookshelf.
Most people think Fantoms like to hide in the shadows, behind masks, in the depths of opera houses. Not true! They want to be seen! In broad daylight!

Cloth covers will probably have to do for now. New blinds aren't horribly expensive, they just take some time to get fitted and installed.
Old 29th September 2020 | Show parent
  #29
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jiffybox's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by syntonica View Post
Most people think Fantoms like to hide in the shadows, behind masks, in the depths of opera houses. Not true! They want to be seen! In broad daylight!

Cloth covers will probably have to do for now. New blinds aren't horribly expensive, they just take some time to get fitted and installed.
Can’t change the blinds, it’s a rental for now, so I’m doing non-destructive workarounds like the removable UV film and such.
Old 29th September 2020
  #30
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I covers my rigs with white bed sheets. When I'm ready I remove the sheets and every once in a while I shake them and that keeps the dust off. I like to pretend I am phantom.
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