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  • Quote Originally Posted by skyy1985
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    Hi Travst,

    This is a top notch unit. I do have all pro gear and I'm glad I bought this unit. It takes some time to get used to, but all in all it is a very good board and I'm looking forward to making music with it, if you need some tips I will be glad to help, just hit me up




    I agree. After a couple of weeks with it I've learned to program and there are some great sounds in it. Mike's Bladerunner video has me wanting to work on that song. I could get lost for days playing around with it.

    Comment


    • Hi guys,

      I'm back with another XW-P1 + iPad related question.

      As you all know, the acoustic / electric piano sounds are a subjective matter, and for that matter i happen to like more the acoustic piano sounds from either iGrand, and/or Sampletank on the iPad. So i'd like to use those sounds, combined with the sick synth sounds the XW can put out.

      On paper, it all should work well : the XW has 4 zones, and Sampletank is also 4-part multitimbral; and they kind of work together...kinda...;

      Zone 1 when set to external channel 1 triggers part 1 in Sampletank; Zone 2 - > external channel 2 - > Part 2 in Sampletank, and so forth.

      What i'm trying to figure out is : is there any way to have on the fly control over which zone is playing at a given time ? like the ability to switch on a zone while playing, and also maybe have volume control over the diferent zones?

      I've tried delving in the mixer page, but everytime i move a fader corresponding to a specific zone, that zone gets solo-d, and the other 3 zones get muted.

      Thanks!

      Comment


      • Hey Mike,

        I just want to say XW-P1 is a great board, the more i mess with it the more i enjoy it. I have a fantom x6 and have stacked them both, but the only thing is I can't get the x6 to change the performances. I checked the manual and it says that 112 MSB and then the Progam #, but wen i use this in the x6 its changes, but the PCM tones not the performances, am I missin something? Can you please help me in the midi part of the XW-P1,. Thanx

        Comment


        • It might be the bank select controller method. When I use my XW with Cakewalk I have to set the controller method to Controller 32 in order to access the Synth modes, even though it's supposed to work with Controller 0 Normal Method. Otherwise all I can get is PCM sounds as well.

          Comment


          • For users supporting users and of course I'll be stopping in from time to time.



            http://www.casiomusicforums.com
            -Mike Martin
            Casio America, Inc.

            Comment


            • Hey Mike - good to see you here again after the forum meltdown. I'm glad most of the review was done before those problems occurred, but at least things are working well now.



              Speaking of which...after more than 225,000 page views and almost 600 posts (!), I think we’ve pretty much covered everything there is to cover about the XW-P1. With Casio now establishing a user forum, it’s time for this review to wind down, although like all pro reviews, it will remain open for the three or four people left on this planet who haven’t heard about the XW-P1, or for any follow-ups that relate to the thread.



              However, there are two pieces of unfinished business: a coda on the XW-G1, and the conclusions. So, let’s look at the main points of differentiation between the P1 and G1. Much of this is excerpted from the XW-G1 review I wrote for the October 2012 issue of Electronic Musician magazine, as my opinions of the G1 haven’t changed since then.



              First, there’s a philosophical difference not unlike the familiar synth/sampler dichotomy.The P1 is more about multiple synth engines for hardcore synthesizer fans, while the XW-G1 is for the more groove/DJ/sampling crowd. Although cosmetically they look similar, there are quite a few differences “under the hood.”



              The G1 dispenses with the P1’s Hex Layer and Drawbar Organ engines, replacing them with a Sample Looper and a flash memory-based Sample Player with 10 presets. Available RAM for sampling/looping is 19 seconds with mono signals at a 21kHz sampling rate; halve that for stereo or when using the 42kHz sampling rate. Files can then transferred over to Flash ROM as user waves to free up the RAM buffer.



              The P1’s assortment of PCM Melody and PCM Drum Tones, which you can think of as a sort of super General MIDI module whose sounds range from adequate to outstanding, remains intact but more importantly, so does the Solo Synth and its “Minimoog thinking on steroids.” A G1 Performance stacks up to four sound engines (one Solo Synth, and the rest PCM Tones or user Waves).



              The G1 also adds some control features not found in the P1 like the Multikey feature, which allows using an octave of keys as trigger controllers for various functions. The 16-step Step Sequencer is similar to the P1’s but has a few differences (9 tracks instead of 16, four controller tracks, and a couple additional ways to trigger it) and like the P1, there’s a 16-step Arpeggiator and Phrase Sequencer. And yes, there are the same normal and wacky options for external audio as the P1.



              But the main differentiation involves looping and sampling. The looper does what you’d expect, but more—like being able to re-sample sounds from within the G1, although you can also plug an instrument into the back and treat the looper like a stand-alone effect. It can also work with sampling (described later).



              Sampling does some things well, some things superbly, and some things . . . not so well. Transposing a sample across the keyboard works great—transposition quality is good, and the G1 recognizes a sample’s loop. If you try to transpose way out of range, it just repeats the adjacent octave that’s not out of range.



              However, multisampling is non-standard; a G1 user wave tone has only one sample, so there are no conventional multisampling split points. Instead, you assemble up to five samples consecutively, one after another. Each “split” then specifies the start and end of each section within the sample; in other words, each split plays back a different portion of the sample. Each split can loop from an arbitrary point in the middle to the end but for instrument sounds, you can’t specify the loop points with sufficient accuracy to do short (e.g, only a few cycles) loops. Nor can any sample editor I’ve used generate multiple loop points within a single sample that the G1 will recognize. If you want a multi-sampled cello, this is not the droid you’re looking for. On the other hand I was able to take a single sample from a Paul Reed Smith bass, stretch it over the keyboard, and it sounded great. Note that sampling RAM is not expandable, but I didn’t bump into too many limits, given the G1’s intended application.



              While Casio’s approach is a little awkward for conventional multisampling applications, it’s a very different story if you have a sampled phrase like a piece of music. Defining different sections, mapping them to keys, and being able to loop them makes for some great breaks, DJ-style loop mashing, sound effects, stutters, and more. What’s more, the looper can fit this like a glove—for example, it’s easy to record five consecutive step sequencer sequences, shuttle the wave into a tone, and the G1 automatically sets the split points and you can start playing immediately. The integration among all the G1 elements—looper, step sequencer, sampler, arpeggiator, etc.—is a major strength. Like the P1, there’s Editor/Librarian and it’s every bit as good as the one for the P1.



              Overall, the G1 is just as much fun as the P1 . . . and for groove fans, perhaps even more so.
              N E W S O N G ! To Say 'No' Would Be a Crime (Remix) is now streamable from my YouTube channel.

              Subscribe, like, and share the links!

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              • Hi Craig in reference to your one button sound selection, thanks for that tip. I also have one, you can use the performance the have 16 parts in any order you wish. press mixer button, set parts 1-8 as you wish save the performance, press the step seq button set the parts 9-16 any way you wish save the step seq in a user slot, select that use slot and save it with the performance. this give you 16 parts in any order you want including multiple kits, and with your one button press that will give us access 160 parts per bank. Also if your in smf mode you can alter the volume levels, rev, chrs, and tones from an external board. I'm using the Fantom X6, I sequenced "Corazon Espinado" and saved it as smf 0 and installed it to my 32 gig card on the P1, it was a mere 64k file. so I can imagine how many of these files I will fit into 32 gigs. It would be nice to manipulate the sounds from the mixer section, cuz wen I take this board out alone im stuck unless I have an external midi mixer also. Anyway I'm glad I bought this board, hopefully they will update the firmware to include the mixer as an option for control in the smf mode, unless its too complicated for the programmers or just not able to function for other reasons.If you have any more tips I would really like to hear about them. Cheers, skyy1985

                Comment


                • Time for conclusions.



                  If you’ve been following this review, it’s probably obvious that I really like the XW-P1. But it’s one thing to appreciate it on a feature-by-feature basis, and another to consider an overview about what makes this keyboard special.



                  Of course, first is the price. There’s a whole lot of functionality, and although at first I thought this might have been at the expense of reliability or construction quality, the XW-P1 has not only been totally reliable, but coped just fine with being carried around. I think it’s stronger than meets the eye. Or at least, stronger than meets the assumption based on price



                  But another important feature of both the XW-P1 and the XW-G1 is that they are not “me-too” synthesizers—Casio didn’t take the “let’s do something like every other synthesizer, only cheaper” approach. The multiple engines, step sequencer, and editor go beyond the expected, but the engines themselves are different from the norm. Although they have various limitations—this is not a synth programmer’s ultra-flexible design with a zillion modulation sources and destinations—those limitations don’t get in the way of enjoying the synth and making cool sounds. It almost seems like the designers placed a premium on users being able to do things that other synthesizers don’t do.



                  For example, you could pick on the Hex Layer for having a primitive filter and no filter envelope, but for stacking sounds together quickly to make a Pad of the Gods, it’s easy. If you want to get into really detailed programming, the Solo Synth lets you do that. And while the PCM sounds won’t put any ROMplers out of business, being able to incorporate the PCM tones into other engines adds welcome flexibility.



                  I kind of dismissed the drawbar organ engine at first—I already have a million ways to produce that sound—but have warmed to it because it does sound good, and I can see where someone who depends on organ sounds and uses the XW-P1 will be a happy camper (remember, though, neither it nor the Hex Layer engines are in the XW-G1).



                  I also think the front-panel interface is quite easy to navigate—you don’t have to boot up the editor to make tweaks, although clearly, the editor is the quickest and easiest way to deal with edits. Also, the MIDI implementation is such that the XW-P1 slides well into a studio context.



                  Of course, the XW-P1 isn’t perfect; I think the effects are relatively weak, especially considering what we’ve come to expect in modern synthesizers. For recording, I end up using plug-ins and for live performance, a good multieffects may or may not be a good idea, depending on what type of music you play. There’s also a learning curve, although it’s hard to consider this a disadvantage because its due to the deep functionality. A mitigating factor is you can get a lot out of the XW-P1 even if you don’t dive deeply into it, although the potential to learn more is always there if you want to dig into the parameters.



                  My final comment is hard to quantify, other than referring to “the fun factor.” There’s something about this synth that has a bit of a mad scientist vibe to it, and an element that makes you want to play with it. It has fun sounds, it’s fun to program, and it’s fun to play. It doesn’t hurt that you can reach over and do step sequencing, tweak the four assignable knobs, or make otherwordly sounds by plugging whatever’s handy into the external input.



                  I keep thinking that during product design meetings, someone kept saying “Hey! How about we do this, too?” and nobody objected. It would have been easy for some marketing person to say “But a guitar sounds really sketchy going through the external input when you shift its pitch. Shouldn’t we lock out the transposition option?” To which someone else said “No other keyboard can make that sound! Besides, I bet that crazy Anderton guy who writes for that Harmony Central web site will have fun with it! Keep it in!!”



                  Overall, the XW-P1 has knocked me out. When I first saw it, I thought Casio was on the right track, but didn’t know how people would react. Well, the market has spoken . . . and so has this Pro Review. This has been a thoroughly enjoyable experience, but I also have to say that a huge part of that is due to Mike Martin—and he’s also a major reason why this thread has so many views and such great participation. He’s not only a total pro, his knowledge of the product is astonishingly deep. I also appreciate that he never once descended into marketing-speak, but went about sharing his knowledge in a totally open, helpful, and straightforward way.



                  As mentioned, this thread will stay open for additional comments, and if I come up with any amazingly interesting new techniques I’ll post them here. Meanwhile, thanks to everyone for your comments and tips. What a great ride!
                  N E W S O N G ! To Say 'No' Would Be a Crime (Remix) is now streamable from my YouTube channel.

                  Subscribe, like, and share the links!

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                  • Just for reference, in your opinion, are the fx in this better than say a QS6?
                    Good deals with - Yarbicus, CBH5150, BozzofAngels, Alvin Wilson, Harris Quinn

                    Oh, but you can't expect to wield supreme executive power just because some watery tart threw a sword at you.

                    Comment


                    • I am still interested in what folks are doing with the Drawbar organ sounds for overdrive? This is my only disappointment with my purchase. Love the Hexlayers for what Craig Anderton calls the 'Pad from the Gods'. There are some features that I'm taking care of with performance mode that would have been nice in the tone mode - for example:



                      I like to use a pedal input to change leslie speed - you can set this up in performance mode, but you can't do it for the Organ tones themselves - at least that's what it looks like to me at this point in time. Seems like since it's accessible in performance mode, shouldn't it be available in the tone mode for that group of tones?



                      Also, I started a Yahoo group for XW-P1 owners and about 10 people have joined - I will be posting a link to the newly formed Casio forums shortly.

                      Comment


                      • Oh - Mike Martin - one issue with the Data Wheel - can you ask Casio to make future versions so that the knob stands proud of the surface and doesn't require the fingertip indent control? For data entry for quick spin the fingertip spin is nice, but for fine selection once you are 'close' for me I think it's easier to grasp a knob than to use a fingertip to rotate it. If the knob was just 1/4" taller or as tall as K1-4, it would be great!

                        Comment








                        • Quote Originally Posted by deanmass
                          View Post

                          Just for reference, in your opinion, are the fx in this better than say a QS6?




                          I don't have any experience with the QS6, but maybe someone who's used both can chime in.
                          N E W S O N G ! To Say 'No' Would Be a Crime (Remix) is now streamable from my YouTube channel.

                          Subscribe, like, and share the links!

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                          • It is probably better. The QS6 is pretty old.
                            Good deals with - Yarbicus, CBH5150, BozzofAngels, Alvin Wilson, Harris Quinn

                            Oh, but you can't expect to wield supreme executive power just because some watery tart threw a sword at you.

                            Comment


                            • no, old does not mean worst.

                              The Alesis still has a remarkable effects section, and still works fine for some sounds.

                              I owned it, and now I play a XWP1: the reverb sounds too metallic, with poor parameters to set. Same concept for delay.

                              A new firmware, I guess, could solve this issue.

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                              • Quote Originally Posted by lucabbrasi
                                View Post

                                no, old does not mean worst.

                                The Alesis still has a remarkable effects section, and still works fine for some sounds.

                                I owned it, and now I play a XWP1: the reverb sounds too metallic, with poor parameters to set. Same concept for delay.

                                A new firmware, I guess, could solve this issue.




                                My impression is that the XW-P1 doesn't have a lot of DSP left over for additional effects functionality, and quality reverb requires a lot of CPU cycles. Also, don't forget that Alesis specialized in reverb and other effects for quite some time...I'm sure they had plenty of "off the shelf" reverb chips and algorithms they could fold into the QS6.



                                How to allocate available processing power is one of the product design decisions a company has to make. It seems Casio put the emphasis on the internal functions rather than effects, which can be added externally. I doubt that Casio will be changing the firmware to update the effects, but as the old saying goes, "never say never."
                                N E W S O N G ! To Say 'No' Would Be a Crime (Remix) is now streamable from my YouTube channel.

                                Subscribe, like, and share the links!

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