How to load presets on a Roland U220?

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How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby fh991586 » Sat Dec 25, 2010 4:09 am

Hi there,

I've tried several times to upload the midi file supposely corresponding to the presets to the Roland U220 (got it from their ftp site), but to no avail.

I have a computer. I have a usb/midi link (midisport 2x2), and the light "midi message" blinks when I try to send the midi file using a sysex tool (Elektron 1.4), but I can't put the U220 in a receiving position. I can only transmit data, but I can't find the way to have the other way around...

I got the unit second-hand, and I quickly noticed that the original patches #1 to 20 where missing (a previous user replaced them but no sound came out. I could only reinitialise the #1 patch Accoustic Piano, whatever patch I've been trying to reset.

From all my research on the internet, I always come up with the same messages but no real answer. Did anybody ever succeeded in doing this before? I need to get that "Receiving SysEx" message on the lcd...

I must add that I never before tried to send midi or sysex files from the computer to a sound module. Any general info on that would be appreciated, since I may simply lack the knowledge to correctly do the thing.
-Roland JX3P+PG200, D50+PG1000, Juno 6+106, MKS50/70, JP8080, U220, MVS1, MDC1, MSE1, TR-707
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby gcoudert » Sat Dec 25, 2010 11:18 am

I'm sure you've thought about this but have you tried changing MIDI channels, making sure the transmitting device and the U220 are set to the same channel? Maybe the sysex data is set to channel 1. I am not familiar with the U220 but my TX7 for example will only receive sysex on channel 1.
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby fh991586 » Sat Dec 25, 2010 5:07 pm

That's an idea, but I'm sure it was already set to channel 1 by default, since I can play it with my master keyboard who is set on channel 1. And my computer device doesn't have a channel option... So no, it didn't work.

This machine is simply not receptive, even if I can see the connection is made because of the blinking light of the midi message... I just can't seem to find the way to make it receive a midi transfer!
-Roland JX3P+PG200, D50+PG1000, Juno 6+106, MKS50/70, JP8080, U220, MVS1, MDC1, MSE1, TR-707
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby gcoudert » Sun Dec 26, 2010 8:21 pm

Some devices need to perform a 'handshake' so you may have to connect to MIDI Out of the U220 to the MIDI In of your computer.
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby fh991586 » Mon Dec 27, 2010 12:31 am

Worth a try! Then I'll see if the U220 can send out the midi dump...
-Roland JX3P+PG200, D50+PG1000, Juno 6+106, MKS50/70, JP8080, U220, MVS1, MDC1, MSE1, TR-707
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby gcoudert » Tue Dec 28, 2010 12:26 am

Let me know if it works; I'm curious to find out...
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby fh991586 » Tue Jan 04, 2011 4:59 am

It didn't work.

I've also tried with the Midi-OX software, just in case the other one I was using wasn't reliable. But at least I was able to dump a sysex file from the U220 to my computer. Which isn't a great thing since I have no idea what to do with it...

I also noticed that the first time I tried to push the file into the U220, the rack unit flashed a message saying the buffer was full. I configured a delay over 100 ms on the computer, and it never showed up again. Still, the midi signal light was blinking, but without any data getting into the U220...

Now there's something I'm not sure to understand. The original file for the U220 is a midi file, not a sysex. What is the difference? I noticed I could save this file into a sysex using the Elektron C6 software, but was it a good file to work it in the first place? I'm refering to that zipped file here:
ftp://ftp.roland.co.uk/ProductSupport/U ... 20ORIG.ZIP

Unless someone somewhere was ever able to put the U220 in a receiver mode, I don't know how it's supposed to get the original preset back...

Or could it just be that the inside battery is too old and need replacing? There's nothing indicating that it's failing, but should I just try to change it before continuing my desperate attempts on this machine?
-Roland JX3P+PG200, D50+PG1000, Juno 6+106, MKS50/70, JP8080, U220, MVS1, MDC1, MSE1, TR-707
-Korg Poly61M, M1R, MicroKorg, Micro X, Kaossilator/Pro, Monotron X3
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby gcoudert » Tue Jan 04, 2011 10:12 am

fh991586 wrote:Now there's something I'm not sure to understand. The original file for the U220 is a midi file, not a sysex.


Sysex can be transmitted from a device, recorded onto a sequencer track and saved as a *.mid file. I have never done it myself but some musicians do this.
Try opening the .mid file in a sequencer (if you don't have one, try Reaper, it's free), set the track to the same MIDI channel as the U220, make sure to turn memory protect is off, ensure that sysex is not filtered by the sequencer and play the track 'into' the U220. The sysex data should be sent to the U220. If it seems to receive something but doesn't like it, slow the playback tempo down.
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby cornutt » Tue Jan 04, 2011 9:34 pm

Most Rolands have a system parameter somewhere that enables/disables reception of sysex, and it's usually disabled by default. Look through your master/system/common menus.

Also, if memory serves the U220 is recent enough that it uses the Roland sysex format that requires that the unit number in the sysex message matches the unit number set in the synth itself. You may have to look at the sysex data in a hex editor to see what unit number is embedded in the messages. The unit number is another system parameter on the synth.
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby fh991586 » Wed Jan 05, 2011 5:30 am

cornutt wrote:Also, if memory serves the U220 is recent enough that it uses the Roland sysex format that requires that the unit number in the sysex message matches the unit number set in the synth itself. You may have to look at the sysex data in a hex editor to see what unit number is embedded in the messages. The unit number is another system parameter on the synth.


Thank you for your input, but I have no idea what you are talking about... :-(

Until I tried this a few days ago, I never used midi or sysex files, or tried to send things from the computer to a music module, so I'm pretty lost now. I'll try the sequencer thing soon, but the only thing I have left after this would be to buy this: http://www.truespec.com/roland-u220-ope ... p-294.html

It's a good thing I have other fully complete & working synth to play with, otherwise I would be really pissed off now! ;-)
-Roland JX3P+PG200, D50+PG1000, Juno 6+106, MKS50/70, JP8080, U220, MVS1, MDC1, MSE1, TR-707
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby gcoudert » Wed Jan 05, 2011 9:23 am

fh991586 wrote:Thank you for your input, but I have no idea what you are talking about...


Look in the MIDI menu; that 'unit' parameter should be there. You could try every possible setting.
Under the same menu, enable sysex transmission.

I will have a look at the online manual and see if I can find the parameters.
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby gcoudert » Wed Jan 05, 2011 9:54 am

OK I've got the manual. This is from pages 48 and 88.
I cannot find a procedure for turning 'memory protect' off so I guess you don't have to but then, I may have missed it.

Optional: under Utilities:
- find the "Run/Stop" parameter using the left/right arrow keys
- set it to 'Run' using the up/down arrow keys - this will allow MIDI reception even if you change pages on the U220; if you don't do it then stay on the same page!

Under Edit --> Setup --> MIDI:
- find the "Rx Sysex" parameter using the left/right arrow keys
- set it to 'On' using the up/down arrow keys

- find the "Sysex Device ID" parameter using the left/right arrow keys (that's the one Cornutt was referring to)
- set it to say, 1, try sending the sysex data. If it doesn't work, change it to 2, etc. until you get to 32! When it does work, the display will read "Receiving SysEx". If it still doesn't work, you can repeat the process for all 16 MIDI channels (32 x 16 = 512 possible ID/Channel combinations!) Obviously, this is time consuming, which is why Cornutt suggested opening the sysex file and trying to find out what the ID is in the file itself, as it should match the ID of the device (1-32).

Hope this helps.
Last edited by gcoudert on Wed Jan 05, 2011 6:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby cornutt » Wed Jan 05, 2011 4:00 pm

If you have the file loaded up in a sequencer, pick a sysex string, display it, and paste it here. I'll interpret it.
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby fh991586 » Sun Jan 09, 2011 8:41 pm

I installed Reaper, but it's really not the kind of program that you can understand at first sight... :?
So I have no idea what to do with it. I'm just getting more unknown software that I have to understand before understanding the hardware in the first part! Not really fun...

I'll go fish into my closet to see if I still have an old Roland MC-50: I could use that as a sequencer...
-Roland JX3P+PG200, D50+PG1000, Juno 6+106, MKS50/70, JP8080, U220, MVS1, MDC1, MSE1, TR-707
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Re: How to load presets on a Roland U220?

Postby gcoudert » Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:29 pm

fh991586 wrote:I'll go fish into my closet to see if I still have an old Roland MC-50: I could use that as a sequencer...


If it's not a Mark II model, it won't work. It's not MIDI-file compatible.

I wish I could help you with Reaper but I haven't used it for years. I'm sure somebody on this forum uses it.
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