Modding the New ARP Odyssey

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mootbooxle
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Gear: Rhodes Suitcase 73, Wurly 206,
Dotcom Modular, ARP Odyssey, Roland SH-3, Yamaha DX7 and DX100, Nord Lead 2X, Sassmann Harpsichord, Roland JV-1080, Etc
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Modding the New ARP Odyssey

Post by mootbooxle » Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:33 am

I absolutely love my new (Korg) ARP Odyssey. If I'm honest though, there are a few features which I wish it had readily available that would make what is an incredibly versatile synth even more useful.

Has anyone attempted to mod this new unit yet? Does the surface-mount component design make that more difficult (or impossible)?

If I could, here are the things I would like to do to mine (read: pay a better tech than me to do):
1. Single/Multiple trigger switch. Just a simple mini toggle switch that jumpers the well-known Gate Out to Trig In connection, enabling legato response.
2. VCO2 priority switch - VCO 2 is hard-wired to be high-note priority, enabling the duophonic keyboard response. This is nice and useful, but being able to switch this to low-note priority would turn the synth into a true monosynth. That is preferable for many applications and would really extend the usefulness of the Odyssey.
3. LFO retrig/free run switch. I find it annoying that the LFO restarts on each key press. This switch would toggle this behavior on and off.

If I could have those three things, I would be so happy. It would make a great synth even better!

DeeBeepy
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Re: Modding the New ARP Odyssey

Post by DeeBeepy » Wed May 27, 2015 1:49 pm

Based on the teardown video by Markus Fuller (KORG Arp Odyssey teardown), it seems like the first two mods might be possible without cutting any traces by getting between the jack boards on the back panel and the header cables that plug into them. Not willing to void my warranty just yet, but I have been trying to find out if a service manual is available for this. Unfortunately, the local service centers I've spoken with so far are not up to speed on the new Odyssey yet.

You probably already know, but for those who don't, #1 and #2 from your wishlist can be accomplished using the external patch panel without modification: #1 is the Gate Out to Trig In patch (well known, as you said) and #2 is CV Out to CV In (it was your post that prompted me to try that - thanks). #3 seems like it should have been the default mode when the instrument is auto-triggering from the LFO, but no.

P.S. I love the Korg Arp Odyssey - even the slim keys. I played an Arp Axxe as my first synthesizer until I wore my finger through the PPC pad over 20 years ago.

staccato
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Re: Modding the New ARP Odyssey

Post by staccato » Wed Oct 07, 2015 7:10 pm

just FYI, when VCO1 is set to LFO, it does not retrigger, so that may be useful in some patches where a free-run LFO is desired...

short notes, peepses...

staccato
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Re: Modding the New ARP Odyssey

Post by staccato » Wed Oct 07, 2015 7:12 pm

question: does any one know what the little rubber plugs are for in some of the Odyssey modules? was thinking these may portend upcoming factory mods...

short notes, peepses...

Nisei
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Re: Modding the New ARP Odyssey

Post by Nisei » Tue Mar 22, 2016 6:49 pm

There are trim potentiometers beneath them so when in need for service they can pop them out, put a screwdriver through the hole and do some fine tuning without having to disassemble the whole unit.

Amstrad
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Re: Modding the New ARP Odyssey

Post by Amstrad » Sat Mar 26, 2016 12:55 am

A mono mod for the original model is commented in this post
http://www.vintagesynth.com/forum/viewt ... =5&t=81572

I always liked pretty much the oddity vst, and now that i have a real odyssey, i miss its extras: the proper mono mode with upper note (connecting cv inputs tricks it but note down), switch on/off lfo keyboard retrigger , and if possible and lfo clock/midi sync, those would be lovely.
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soundxplorer
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Re: Modding the New ARP Odyssey

Post by soundxplorer » Mon Apr 11, 2016 1:59 pm

I just picked up an Odyssey and I really like it so far. I'd be interested in hearing about any other potential mods.

Specifically, I wonder if it would be possible to retrofit it with a new keybed, one that has proper MIDI DIN out and at least a pitch bend control that sends MIDI.

I'm imagining something like the new Arturia Keystep that was just announced:
https://www.arturia.com/keystep/overview
Wouldn't that be awesome? I can't find the dimensions posted on the net anywhere yet, but at first glance it seems like it might be a good fit. It only has 32 keys, but has a built in 64 step sequencer and arp. Plus onboard CV with a mod output assignable to either velocity, aftertouch, or mod wheel.

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