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EA7 thoughts. . .

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EA7 thoughts. . . #5632
I have been primarily using my Korg PA4X at work, leaving it there. The EA7 is at home for "practice", extra jobs and backup to the Korg.
Because of health and other issues, I had not turned it on for about a month before today.
I decided to check it out for a few minutes.
Nearly three hours later I was still playing. What can I say? I prefer many of the lead sounds and most of the styles to anything in Korg or Yamaha. If it would display text files, I wouldn't use anything else. It does lack vocal harmonizer, but I have an external unit for that. The vocal processor itself is pretty good.
The Korg Songbook means one button press and I have EVERYTHING needed for the song instantly. With the EA7, if I don't know the lyrics well, I have to use laptop to display them. i do tons of requests and just can't remember every song out of several thousand.
However we are not comparing apples to apples here. The Korg is three times as expensive.
Gimme an EA8 with large touch screen and text display and I'm set for life. That isn't too broad a statement at my age. :)
2 months 6 days ago
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EA7 thoughts. . . #5633
Normally, selecting a registration does not send any identifying messages to the PC or laptop, so there is no way for the PC to respond to a specific change in the instrument’s setup.
OpenText works around this limitation by creating a special midi song file that, when loaded by depressing the registration button, sends a message which triggers the display of an individual pdf file or a page from a song book on the PC screen.

psrtutorial.com/MB/opentext.html

Supports up to 10,000 individual song files or a similar number of pages in each of 12 Song Books.
Song Files display in a single window as multiple tabs. Song book pages display in a single window. There is no need to clear the screen or fiddle with PC controls.
OpenText uses free PDF readers to view files.
Original files are not modified.

Worked for Roland E-series
2 months 5 days ago Last edit: 2 months 5 days ago by loshk.
Roland E-80 v.2.01 (SRX-01, 10), Roland Fantom XR, Yamaha Motif-Rack ES, Roland M-GS64, Ketron SD-2, Edirol PCR-500, Edirol M-16DX, Kawai MAV-8, JBL 4312E

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EA7 thoughts. . . #5634
For most people using Roland’s needing text for styles, programs like OnSong seem to work well. Performances can be selected remotely using PC/32/00 codes, which can be sent from the laptop/iPad and associated with the text or fakebook.pdf.

One distinct advantage over the Korg is that this system allows scanned sheet music in addition to just Lyrics, if you like to work from a large fakebook collection (jazz standards, buskers books etc.).

Sadly, as I have mentioned in the past, the decision to cut the Performance List to 100 entries down from 999 in the BK series complicates this system, requiring you to hand load a Performance List once you exceed 100 songs. Why the outcry about this didn’t make Roland update the OS beats me....

Oh, wait. There wasn’t one!

But I’m sure that it could easily be changed if enough users made their voices heard loudly at Roland HQ! It seems that the majority of EA7 users are possibly non-English speaking and don’t post here. Most videos I’ve seen seem SE Asian, and language issues probably account for why we aren’t getting much input.
2 months 5 days ago
BK-9 BK-7m G70. Kurzweil K2500S, Korg Triton. Samick upright piano. iMac 27", HR824 monitors.

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EA7 thoughts. . . #5635
Another possibility occurs to me…

You can select tones, keyboard mix, and style remotely by midi. Perhaps if your needs exceed 100 songs in style mode, you can create a template style mode Performance with your usual controls splits etc. set up in advance, then just associate a midi file with the sheet music that sends the codes for the style and tempo and tones you need.

This would, at least, allow for a far greater selection of songs then the measly 100 entry list. You could also use the program change codes for the performance list to select different layout Performances for style mode if you need things like different splits, different cord recognition modes etc..
2 months 5 days ago
BK-9 BK-7m G70. Kurzweil K2500S, Korg Triton. Samick upright piano. iMac 27", HR824 monitors.

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EA7 thoughts. . . #5636
Thanks guys. I will investigate all these options.
I did use the EA7 on the job last night and it did a fine job. It worked out that I mostly did songs of which I know the lyrics, so only had to go to the laptop for a few requests.
I'm using a T.C. Helicon Harmony M for vocal and harmony processing, and it is nearly as good as the one built into the PA4x.
I did have a Perform VK, but I actually prefer the old Harmony M.
We're having some serious weather right now, but when it passes I will do some research.
2 months 5 days ago

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EA7 thoughts. . . #5638
It always astounded me how close Roland got to perfection with the BK9 and stumbled at the finish line.

The BK-9 had all the elements needed for the perfect arranger. Well, at least if you didn’t need a harmonizer on board! The BK9 had the ability to display JPEG‘s on a screen. It also had the ability to store chord sequences, like Korg’s do. But they missed the opportunity to link both of these abilities with the Performance. Unlike Korg.

With both of these links having been made, the Roland would have been able to display either scanned sheet music or lyrics for styles as well as midi files. And, with chord sequence linked to the performance, the Roland would have had the same ability as the Korg’s to use styles with prerecorded changes, one of the best ways of using style mode.

It’s not that Roland didn’t have the features, they forgot that they aren’t that useful without a link to a Performance for a gigging musician... But to have come so close and to miss the mark is possibly more frustrating than to not have the features at all!

I have never understood why Roland could look at their competition, see the features their customers needed and got, and not implement them for decades..! That it took about 20 years of asking for multipads before the EA7 finally added them is amazing. How much longer are Roland going to take to add text display for style modes, or a proper break/mute?

So little needs to be done to return Roland to competitiveness, certainly nothing needing a complete breakthrough in technology, I believe that Roland’s core sound is still the equal of any, especially at the price point, but their stubbornness bordering on pigheadedness in not adding the features considered standard on all other brands is beyond belief..!

You could easily look at the EA7 as Roland’s attempt to make a Korg... multipads, a sampler, lots of buttons. But a few more things need adding before they get there. And top of the list comes the style text display and a break/mute. And links to the Performance for lyrics and the chord sequencer (which they desperately need to add back to the EA line if they want to go toe to toe with Korg).

But the litany of ‘So close but no cigar!’ needs to come to a close. When you have all the pieces, you need to connect them all...
2 months 4 days ago Last edit: 2 months 4 days ago by Diki.
BK-9 BK-7m G70. Kurzweil K2500S, Korg Triton. Samick upright piano. iMac 27", HR824 monitors.

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EA7 thoughts. . . #5639
Well said. It is really close. For now I really have the best of both worlds, PA4X and EA7, but I wish I could combine the features I like from each of them and make my dream arranger!
2 months 4 days ago

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EA7 thoughts. . . #5641
Well, you probably could, if willing to use both at the gig!

As light as the EA7 is, tbh that's not actually out of consideration... :evil:

My biggest issue with the Korg's is how complicated their editing and MFX (insert effect) architecture is. Things that are easy to do on the Roland are an absolute PITA on Korg's, like editing Part velocities for styles... Absolutely essential to multi-velocity sampled kits, and only possible on a per-CV basis on a Korg, not global per style (so you need to make the adjustment dozens of times rather than just once). And the measly insert effects make you make far more compromises in sound than Roland's do (at least the TOTL ones... 2 MFX for Keyboard Parts and 3 more for Song/Style Parts is way more than the PA4X).

I have worked extensively with a friend's PA3X and 4X, and love the way they can sound, especially for modern sounding groove music, but the OS is so arcane compared to the simplicity of the BK's..!

A BK-9 with multipads, a decent sampler (although TBH I find little to complain about in the ROM Tones) and the aforementioned OS tweaks would blow a PA4X-76 away, IMHO. And be nearly half the weight!
2 months 4 days ago Last edit: 2 months 4 days ago by Diki.
BK-9 BK-7m G70. Kurzweil K2500S, Korg Triton. Samick upright piano. iMac 27", HR824 monitors.

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