Solaris Expander Announced

Discuss John Bowen Synths - Solaris
John Bowen
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Solaris Expander Announced

Post by John Bowen » Wed Nov 27, 2019 12:36 am

Just back from NAMM, and we have some updated news. I will start taking pre-orders for those interested. Final price will be $3199 - black cabinet only, with LCD displays. The same OLED upgrade package for the keyboard version is possible - price is $250.

You can reserve a unit with a 50% deposit ($1600) via PayPal to sales @johnbowen.com with a note for a Solaris tabletop (TT). As with the keyboard version, a $200 discount will be applied if you make a full prepayment.

Delivery dates are expected to be starting in June.

IMG_7528.png

Octupole
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Re: something new?

Post by Octupole » Wed Nov 27, 2019 9:41 am

WOW !!! What a teaser, out of the blue...

A Solaris desktop with the full blown UI - this would certainly be a very intesting product for those who do not yet own a Solaris.

John, can you already disclose more details about hardware and/or OS? Would it contain the same hardware / DSPs as the current keyboard version, or would there be a new version including more recent and powerful DSPs? You mentioned in other threads that a new board version with more powerful DSPs could be envisaged.

Would it contain the same OS as the current keyboard version, or would it enventually contain new developments by Hrast?

Personally, I could envisage trading my Solaris from the very first batch (S/N #83) against a desktop module, provided the latter contained more powerful hardware and an advanced OS.

Thanks for these good news and a lot of success for this endeavor!

John Bowen
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Re: something new?

Post by John Bowen » Wed Nov 27, 2019 2:38 pm

The new version of the main board that I (prematurely) mentioned is still in long-term development. For now we will be using the same hardware as we have had for any current or future product.

Now, regarding the OS...well that is a different situation. :-)

acemonvw
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Re: something new?

Post by acemonvw » Mon Dec 02, 2019 9:05 pm

Joined the group just to follow this - very interesting :D

ECR
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Joined: Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:50 am

Re: something new?

Post by ECR » Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:52 am

yes, I would be interested!

Diaperjim
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Joined: Wed Jan 15, 2020 12:20 pm

Re: Solaris Expander?

Post by Diaperjim » Wed Jan 15, 2020 12:27 pm

Awesome.
Been wanting either this or a rack, depending on feature set.
The Ribbon could be a 3rd party device, same with joystick.
OS permitting of course.
Good Luck @ NAMM

Hein Eken
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:45 am

Re: Solaris Expander?

Post by Hein Eken » Wed Jan 15, 2020 3:46 pm

Diaperjim wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 12:27 pm
Awesome.
Been wanting either this or a rack, depending on feature set.
Me too ...
Diaperjim wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 12:27 pm
The Ribbon could be a 3rd party device,...
Thomann actually blows out the 3-Zone Kurzweil Ribbon for peanuts.
Has the RJ45 network connector though ...
Diaperjim wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 12:27 pm
... same with joystick.
In general,- yes.
Might be all about finding some (desktop-) MIDI controller device offering a joystick (and ideally ribbon in addition)
Diaperjim wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 12:27 pm
Good Luck @ NAMM
+1

:)

Hein

John Bowen
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Re: Solaris Expander?

Post by John Bowen » Wed Jan 15, 2020 4:01 pm

I found the Studiologic SL controllers (73 or 88 keys) which have 3 joysticks. I was hoping to borrow one for the NAMM show, but was too late in contacting them. Chris Martirano said the 3rd joystick should be able to assign to any CC.

I was aware of the Kurzweil ribbon, of course, but we’d need to make a big hardware modification to add the connector and circuitry. As you should know, the Solaris ribbon outputs two ribbon controller signals, and these are mapped to CC18 & 19.

Hein Eken
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Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:45 am

Re: Solaris Expander?

Post by Hein Eken » Thu Jan 16, 2020 7:12 am

John Bowen wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 4:01 pm

I was aware of the Kurzweil ribbon, of course, but we’d need to make a big hardware modification to add the connector and circuitry. As you should know, the Solaris ribbon outputs two ribbon controller signals, and these are mapped to CC18 & 19.
I´m aware it´s impossible to use "as it is" and own a Kurz PC361 w/ ribbon anyway, which is a great combo to control a Solaris expander device.
The Kurzweil ribbon,- together w/ the PC3 & PC4 OS by nature,- offers 1 full length zone or 3 shorter zones, each one individually assignable to any MIDI CC and offering other goodies individually for each zone.

I´m very interested in the 1HU rackmount, possibly the desktop version too.
For me it´s all about the editing options we´ll have w/ the 1HU "blackbox" Solaris.
What about a SCOPE device for SCOPE users and in addition to VST ?

Are several 1HU or desktop and rackmount version cascadable for more polyphony ?
How will announced 4-part MIDI multimode/multitimbrality work across several (at least 2) units when cascaded ?

:)

Hein

John Bowen
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Re: Solaris Expander?

Post by John Bowen » Thu Jan 16, 2020 8:03 am

Are several 1HU or desktop and rackmount version cascadable for more polyphony ?
How will announced 4-part MIDI multimode/multitimbrality work across several (at least 2) units when cascaded ?
Yes, you can cascade several units using Poly Chain mode, and it works the same way with the new Multimode OS.

Diaperjim
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Joined: Wed Jan 15, 2020 12:20 pm

Re: Solaris Expander?

Post by Diaperjim » Thu Jan 16, 2020 3:27 pm

Polyphony 16 voices, 4 by 4 zone maybe?

Hein Eken
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Re: Solaris Expander?

Post by Hein Eken » Thu Jan 16, 2020 4:31 pm

Diaperjim wrote:
Thu Jan 16, 2020 3:27 pm
Polyphony 16 voices, 4 by 4 zone maybe?
I understood it will be still 10 voices w/ some options like " 4 | 2 | 2 | 2 ", " 4 | 4 | 1 | 1 |" or " 4 | 4 | 2" leaving a unsused/inactive zone etc..
It´s all about each SHARC DSP delivers 2 voices.

Plz correct me if I´m wrong.

:)

Hein

minorguy
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Location: San Jose, CA, USA

Re: Solaris Expander?

Post by minorguy » Thu Jan 16, 2020 4:45 pm

Any combination where the number of voices is an even number. So for example, 4+2+2+2 or 4+4+2+0 or 6+4+0+0 or even 2+4+0+0, etc.
You could not do 4+4+1+1.
Solaris #249

Hein Eken
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:45 am

Re: Solaris Expander?

Post by Hein Eken » Fri Jan 17, 2020 3:26 pm

minorguy wrote:
Thu Jan 16, 2020 4:45 pm

You could not do 4+4+1+1.
Ahh,- that´s sad ...
2x 4-voice poly and 2x monphonic for bass AND lead were tempting.
It´s a shame wasting a voice when you want a monophonic zone.

How comes only even numbers are possible ?
2x 5-voice poly would be interesting too.

:)

Hein

John Bowen
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Re: Solaris Expander?

Post by John Bowen » Fri Jan 17, 2020 10:59 pm

Only even voice numbers are possible because each of 5 DSP chips produce 2 voices (the 6th DSP manages the FX and output routing). The parameters for a program are downloaded to the chip when selected, and so each one plays 2 voices with the same settings.

(Technically we could have 5 parts playing two voices each, but I wanted to stay consistent with the Enable Part buttons on the front panel.)

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