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New Keyboard--Roland Fantom X6 (2005-05-29 - 7:21 a.m.)

Oh, dear. I may have to close this window and come back. When I clicked on "Add an entry," I was attacked by a flashing banner that says "Contratulations Carrie!" "our next American Idol!" Pardon me while I go throw up...

Why does anybody CARE??? This is such a glaring commentary on the state of our society! And that's a whole 'nother entry. That's not why I logged on here today, so never mind.

I am the proud owner of a new Roland Fantom X6 keyboard. Yeah, I know. They spelled Fantom wrong. Manufacturers can't seem to get enough of spelling words wrong. So I just live with it. Anyway, my old XP-50 is starting to show signs of wear and tear after being heavily used for over a decade. And Guitar Center is having a special "no payments or interest for 15 months" deal this weekend, so...I talked my wonderful wife into going to GC yesterday to look at keyboards.

I have upgraded from a 20,000 note sequencer to about 200,000 notes! Egad! My goal is to use all 200,000 on a song. I used to get so frustrated with old keyboard because I love to sequence things really thickly. I would get to within a phrase of the end of a song and *bleep*! "Memory Full!" I wanted to throw the thing through the window! Hopefully, I won't have that problem now.

Plus the Fantom has onboard memory of about 32 Meg for song storage. Now, for your average computer geek, that doesn't sound like a lot of memory, since the average hard drive today has over 1 Gig of memory. But the keyboard is expandable to over 500 Meg. And my average song size runs from 80k to 112k. I have 8 floppy disks of songs for my XP-50. A floppy, as you know has 1.4M (ish). So 8 of those is...lessee...roughly 11.5M. Therefore, I have enough on board memory on this Fantom to hold almost three times that (about 22 floppies).

It's taken me the whole 10+ years to accumulate that many songs on my disks. Needless to say, I think it will be a long time before I even fill up 32M. And I think (I haven't had a chance to verify this, yet) that my old song files will work on the new keyboard. Roland song files save with an .SVQ extension. The Fantom uses the same extension. Sooo...I'm hoping that I won't have to do any major tweaking to make them work.

I won't be able to use it at church for a few weeks, probably. I want to get it figured out, first. Can't take a chance of getting in the middle of a worship service and it flaking out on me, and not knowing how to fix it.

Plus, wifey and I are going on a vacation to California (Mendocino area) in a few weeks and someone will be filling in for me. He knows how to work the XP, so I'm not making any wholesale changes now.

Also, this keyboard has 128 note polyphony, as opposed to 64 on the XP. That means I should be able to use it to play along with with the sequences, ie, play piano while the sequencer plays drums, organs, strings, etc. This eliminates the need for that church's monster-sized Kurzweill keyboard. I never have liked that thing. They had it before I started working there. I think somebody said, "Hm...lessee...let's get the heaviestkeyboard we can find!!"

Anyway...enough of that.

In the past couple of weeks we have said goodbye to Frank Gorshin (the original and best Riddler from the Batman TV series), the guy that played Earnest T Bass on the Andy Griffith Show, and now Oliver from Green Acres (Eddie Albert). Some guy who was the later voice of Fred Flintstone died, too, but he wasn't the original voice. Sigh. Feeling kind of old.

The stupid country lyric for today is:
"I may be a real bad boy, but baby, I'm a real good man." Sheesh!

I am currently reading: Killing Dance by Laurell K. Hamilton

Last movie I watched: Eulogy

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