Roland System 700 716 mixer clone

Roland System 700 716 mixer clone front panel

It looks good, but it’s not very good.

Don’t bother trying to make a PCB of this one, you could stripboard it in half-an-hour or less, I’d imagine. As on the original it’s tacked onto the end of the sample and hold PCB.

Notice no screws for the slide potentiometers. The slide potentiometers are bunged on a bit of veroboard (at a jaunty angle to the strips), with acrylic spacers screwed to the board and glued to the front panel using JBWeld, which is as shit as it sounds.

I had a couple of failures before I got it to stick. I’ve also tried using some special/horrific acrylic cement, which totally failed. There would be a photo of the back of it here but it’s just embarrassing.

Since then I’ve reverted to making PCBs for the slide pots, with screws in the middle of the pot throw, which works much better, and helps reinforce the front panel.

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CV-to-MIDI stripboard thing

That stripboard project is more or less done, although there’s a bit of debugging still to do. It’s a sort of a mini-Roland OP8M – maybe an OP2M, effectively, allowing the MC-4 to control a MIDI synth.

I did a demo of it for a mate, I think he was a bit mystified. Here it is – I got slightly carried away, as usual.

It’s the usual MC-4 syncing a TR-606, with the out-of-tune big black modular bass synth being the System 100M clone, and the parpy MIDI’d up thing being a JX-3P.

It takes CV1, CV2, gate, and MPX from the MC-4. (MPX is a digital signal and is either on or off for the duration of the step).

One switch selects the octave for the base note, and the other switch is for selecting what happens when it receives an MPX signal from the MC-4.

Position one of the MPX switch selects sending CV1 to a different MIDI channel (so you might get a different sound), position three sends CV2 to the same channel (so you get a second note), and in the middle it’s effectively off and just uses CV2 for velocity.

My JX3P doesn’t do velocity, and is only responding on MIDI channel 1 in the video above, so we get this muting effect when switching to “cv1 diff ch”.

I fret about the timing, as always. I’d buffered the CV signal before it hits the ADC to get a low impedance, but it still takes a fair number of samples before I get something reliable. My Poly61M definitely seemed a bit late when triggered from it, but there’s every chance the MIDI in that is just slow.

Anyway it’s working well enough for now, although there’s a minor bug that needs sorting. It should give me different options when I do my long-winded MC-4 jams.

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Roland System 700 707 amplifier/integrator/envelope follower clone

Roland System 700 707 preamp clone

Argh, PCB is dated Dec 2015, it’s been a while… three simple circuits for the price of one on this board, which you should easily be able to stripboard. Here’s my version of the schematic – R3 has no value specified on the schematic, but the board overview in the service manual (and Yves Usson’s photo of the board) has it as 1K.

Here’s a video demo of the envelope follower, using the drum loop from “being boiled” as the followed signal, with the env follower output going to the System 100 envelope input socket. See how the red light goes on and off!

I’ve never found much use for envelope followers but maybe I’m not just creative enough with them. If the signal volume on the input gets boosted enough it bleeds through to the output, but at a normal sort of level there’s no problem.

The integrator works fine, but with the specified values when using it as a CV slew for a VCO it needs a fine touch to dial in the right amount. I used a CA3140 instead of the specified (ICL?) 8007.

The amplifier does the amplification thing as you might expect, and could be really useful (although I regret not putting a switch on the panel for DC coupling).

Also made a mistake on the panel – it should be E.F. on the switched input for the integrator. Had to correct the spelling of “integrater” too, couldn’t let that stand.

Roland System 700 707 clone module

…and round the back – aluminium bent up at the edges to try and stiffen the panel, though it’s not so bad at this smaller size.

Roland System 700 707 clone round the back

I’ve got better at arranging the board-to-panel wires since I did this, it looks a bit higgledy-piggledy.

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