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Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 4:46 pm
by guillermotin
Recently I found the cassette interface to be quite a useful feature to store patches on my Juno 106 and Korg Dw-8000, so much that I prefer using that over MIDI. Just record the output as any other sound file and save it in my projects folder. Neat and plain simple.

I know that the Prophet 5 and Moog Source also include this interface, but I'm still wondering: are there many other synths with this feature?

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 4:57 pm
by Automatic Gainsay
The Ensoniq ESQ-1 has it. I remember hours of time lost to trying to find the perfect audio level, and more hours lost to verifications which didn't pass. Tape dropout, solar winds, the Northern Lights, or something more obscure... the recording just wasn't satisfactory to the ESQ.

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 5:04 pm
by Psy_Free
Ensoniq ESQ-1, Korg Poly800, Korg Polysix, Yamaha DX-21 are 4 I can think of immediately. There are quite a lot.

Edit : Oh and a Casio CZ-5000.

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 5:04 pm
by Z
Welcome to 1980's technology!

Akai AX60

Kawai SX210

Korg PolySix, Poly 800, EX-800

Moog MemoryMoog

Oberheim Matrix 6R, Matrix 12

Roland JP-6, JU-60, MKS-50

SCI Prophet 600

A lot of PPG & Yamaha synths, drum machines & sequencers have tape back-up but require a special DIN cable with coordinating mini-jacks on the other end.

All the Roland TR series drum machines except 606 & 808 have tape back up, too.

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 5:06 pm
by CS_TBL
Korg Poly61

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 5:18 pm
by guillermotin
Wow, that many yet?

Never had a chance to check that Ensoniq, but with my synths the tape works flawlessly.

This seems to be a common feature on 80's Roland gear. I only find it unusual that my Jx10 lacks one, as it would've made my life much easier...

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 5:27 pm
by Z
guillermotin wrote: This seems to be a common feature on 80's Roland gear. I only find it unusual that my Jx10 lacks one, as it would've made my life much easier...
Memory Carts were much easier, plus they give you immeidate access to additional sounds. Plus, that was a way for manufacutres to make more money!
psy-free wrote: Edit : Oh and a Casio CZ-5000.
Are you sure? I just looked at photos of a CZ-5000 I recently sold and I don't see any cassette jacks on the rear and nothing on the front panel regarding tape. I'm just going by my photos, though, and not first-hand knowledge.

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 5:30 pm
by guillermotin
Z wrote:
guillermotin wrote: This seems to be a common feature on 80's Roland gear. I only find it unusual that my Jx10 lacks one, as it would've made my life much easier...
Memory Carts were much easier, plus they give you immeidate access to additional sounds. Plus, that was a way for manufacutres to make more money!
Yeah, I agree... they made us buy those M64c carts only to store patch banks. At least this was a better idea than using floppy disks!

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 5:42 pm
by schmidtc
Question: What are people using for the cassette recorders?

My walkman doesn't cut it ;) I'd really like a cassette recorder with a speed adjustment, as I deleted all the patches in my T8 this week trying to load the factory patches from a stupid wine country tape that was recorded at 90% speed.

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 6:03 pm
by StepLogik
i think a lot of people use their computer for recording the carrier signal. the line in/out jacks should work fine. you should be able to control the speed as well.


its a miracle those cassette interfaces ever worked. the few implementations i've seen have been pretty shoddy.

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 6:16 pm
by Psy_Free
Z wrote:Are you sure? I just looked at photos of a CZ-5000 I recently sold and I don't see any cassette jacks on the rear and nothing on the front panel regarding tape. I'm just going by my photos, though, and not first-hand knowledge.
Yep. It has an 'MT' terminal output on the back which allows you to save/load patches or sequencer data. Never used it myself though.

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 6:25 pm
by nathanscribe
LinnDrum, Bit 99, Yamaha CS-40m, Yamaha TX-81Z (with a special cable).

I'm pretty sure the Casio RZ-1 has this too, but my memory is hazy.

Funny, isn't it - back in the 80s we regularly entrusted our data to tape, and it went wrong fairly often - now it's super-easy and super-reliable to use a DAW to keep these files nice and organised. Win!

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 6:40 pm
by Z
Psy_Free wrote:
Z wrote:Are you sure? I just looked at photos of a CZ-5000 I recently sold and I don't see any cassette jacks on the rear and nothing on the front panel regarding tape. I'm just going by my photos, though, and not first-hand knowledge.
Yep. It has an 'MT' terminal output on the back which allows you to save/load patches or sequencer data. Never used it myself though.
Ah! That's what that is. Looks like you'll need a special cable like with PPG & Yamaha stuff.

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 6:47 pm
by Psy_Free
Z wrote:Looks like you'll need a special cable like with PPG & Yamaha stuff
Yes indeed.

Re: Synths that store patches through a cassette interface

Posted: Thu May 05, 2011 6:52 pm
by guillermotin
nathanscribe wrote:LinnDrum, Bit 99, Yamaha CS-40m, Yamaha TX-81Z (with a special cable).

I'm pretty sure the Casio RZ-1 has this too, but my memory is hazy.

Funny, isn't it - back in the 80s we regularly entrusted our data to tape, and it went wrong fairly often - now it's super-easy and super-reliable to use a DAW to keep these files nice and organised. Win!

Yeah, that's the point. Today's reliability is much better than the tapes used back in the day.

Now, I'm curious about the Tx-81z cable, as I own one of those myself. I'd love to have more info on that.