MATRIXSYNTH: CLOCKING THE ROLAND MC-202 FOR PLEASURE (IF NOT FOR ONE STEP PER PULSE)

Wednesday, January 27, 2021

CLOCKING THE ROLAND MC-202 FOR PLEASURE (IF NOT FOR ONE STEP PER PULSE)


video by Sunshine Jones

"My beloved Roland MC-202 is my main squeeze. I love the SH-101 much more (I have two of them) but because of its size, I travel and perform live with the 202.

One of the real disappointments about the MC-202 is that it doesn’t have a sequencer which can be played or advanced with an analog pulse or trigger. The MC-202 works like a 303, 606 or 808 and it requires sync 24 (din sync) to be clocked.



Fig.1 COMPLEX SEQUENCER
I hear a lot of complaining about the 202 sequencer. It’s very straightforward and pretty typical of analog step sequencers. There is also a real time mode. It’s complicated if you don’t read the manual and make some notes, otherwise (as you can see) it’s pretty straightforward.



Fig.2 FREESTYLE

No sync. DJ style. A total pain in the ass. Not recommended.


Fig.3 SIMPLE CONVERTER

Here’s the midi clock out of a boutique TR-06 converted to sync 24 with a simple box.
Works great.


Fig.4-5 ELABORATE CONTRAPTION

Here I’m doing the same thing with the SBX-10.
What’s cool about using a more capable box is having multiple outputs to sync more than one din sync friend with midi clock.



Fig.6 A TASTE OF THE OLD COUNTRY
Here the TR-606 is sending sync 24 out into a little project box I built which repeats - turning one clock output into three clock outputs - and driving the TB-303 and the MC-202 from one clock.
Personally the old ways are usually the best ways. Analog sounds far better to me than digital, and analog clock feels much better to me than digital does. I’m willing to put in the work, and do things the slow, difficult way to get the results I like best. Close enough isn’t anywhere near good enough for me. That’s why I drag all that gear around and it takes me an hour to set up and break down. Time well spent. Based on the results, it’s the only way for me to fly my spaceship.



Ultimately it’s all about collaboration, bringing things together and meeting in the present tense, and playing live now.
In that spirit, this is a little insight into some of the ways for an MC-202 to join the conversation."

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