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Pros and Cons of MX200 or Integra7 Sound Modules to work with Rodgers Organ

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  • Pros and Cons of MX200 or Integra7 Sound Modules to work with Rodgers Organ

    I am looking at adding a sound module to my Rogers 525 organ (1999 vintage). The MX200 and Integra7 have both been suggested. I understand the MX200 is immediately compatible with the Rogers 525 but perhaps the Integra7 would require more technical knowledge to set up? Would be interested in any guidance anyone could offer to help me decided between the two. I am particularly interested in enlarging the range of organ sounds, not necessarily unauthentic electronic sounds.

  • #2
    I don't know what the MX200 is, but if it is immediately compatible with your Rodgers 525, I would vote for it. At jOrgan we recently went through the exercise of using a similar Rodgers organ with jOrgan. It was discovered that the MIDI messages sent out by the Rodgers from the keyboards, combination pistons and and Swell controls(s) were fairly straightforward, but the messages sent out by the stop switches were anything but. A very clever Dutchman produced a good solution for controlling the Rodgers stops from the jOrgan disposition, without any significant limitations (I think), but I don't think that there was a solution for using the Rodgers stop switches to do things externally, unless only one stop was used at a time. However, with an external module, one may not want to do that anyway. So perhaps the Integra7 should still be considered.
    Last edited by myorgan; 05-20-2021, 01:12 PM. Reason: Correct spelling of organ brand.

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    • #3
      I play a 2010 Rodgers 908 that has an MX200 attached. I had not heard of the Integra 7 but just looked it up. I can say with some authority that it is absolutely not compatible with the stated needs in the o.p. It is a general purpose synthesizer, and will have few (if any) organ sounds. Neither did the MX200 when it was originally designed, but the original Roland product has been reconfigured since the purchase of Rodgers Inc. with mainly organ sounds, and even more, the MX200 is configured internally like a two (or three) manual instrument plus pedal. A 908 is pretty fairly well supplied with authentic organ sounds though, and in practical terms, the additional sounds from any external library are not nearly as easily accessed as the ones on the stoprail. I don't use mine very much I am afraid to admit. It's not mine to rehome, or I would let the o.p. give it a whirl.

      An organ like the 908 can control the MX directly from the keyboard using the organs keys as 'stop controls'. However the sounds are in 'banks' and no one can remember all the combinations of banks and keys so cheat sheets are provided in a 6pt font. In three years I haven't gotten much beyond using Tympani in the pedal. Very inauthentic but pretty effective 'strings', and rarely vocal 'oo's and ahh's'. While researching this I saw that there is an MX200 on Reverb.com, missing a power supply, for $49. I've seen them used for $200 a time or two. I could never advise paying more than that for one. It will not be used enough to justify paying more. The MX200 itself has no display and clearly needs to be used with a fairly modern organ that has one. I can look at the display on the organ and see what sound is set on each 'division' of the MX200. Each manual (and pedal) of the 908 can trigger two MIDI channels (A&B). You can thus have six extra voices ready to go at any time, and it just may be possible to use them all at once, although I have never tried to. Sorry I can't be more positive.

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      • MarkMunroe
        MarkMunroe commented
        Editing a comment
        Thank you for your comments. Today I managed to get a MX200 to play around with it with the intention of purchasing it. I spent all day trying to understand the manual and get things to work. I have found it to be a difficult task since the manual assumes too much knowledge.

        I have managed to find my way around the fiddling with the MX200 knobs to get a basic sound - actually three simultaneously (Swell, Great, and Pedals). I don't think I can double up on this with the Rogers 525 organ since it seems to be one channel per manual/pedal board.

        Secondly, I have managed to use the "Quick Key Map" which might be what you refer to as the "Cheat Sheets". This documentation together with a one page sheet on "Quick Key Access" enables me to set the organ to MSB65 through to MSB69 identified as "Capital Tone, Variation 1, Variation 2, Variation 3 and Variation 4" respectively. The "Quick Key Map" has at the very bottom of the page, "LSB:0" so I assume my organ works to this point because the LSB is set to 0 by default.

        Now from this point, I get stuck, The manual (Page 28 and 29) provides a "Tone List" giving a table with one lot of columns on the left of the "Tone Name" labeled "PC MSB and LSD" and the same columns to the right of the "Tone Name" as well. I have no idea why the left group of columns would be necessary. The columns on the right are populated with the same data as the "Quick Key Map".

        A second list is headed "GM Tones" where MSB is set to 121. A third list "Other Tones" with subheadings: "PST-A"PSD-B", "PST-C" and "PST-D". The fourth list is of rhythms.

        I would like to know how to reference the "GM Tones".

        Any suggestions or links to documentation or other help would be appreciated.

      • myorgan
        myorgan commented
        Editing a comment
        @MarkMunroe,

        Each MIDI device should have General MIDI assignments listed in their documentation for reference. Try searching for it on the Internet. That's generally how I search for information on specific devices.

        Could your manual be here: https://www.telonics.com/products/pr...00Manual_B.pdf
        or here: https://lexiconpro.com/en/downloads/en/owners_manual

        Michael

    • #4
      Not quite sure what you want but I work part time as a woodwind player and "keyboard" player. I used to take a computer and a bunch of midi hardware all mounted in a rack but recently I bought a Roland SD-50. I plan on using it to play all my backgrounds. Has midi in so I can just take a small midi keyboard Might take two keyboards if I plan to use the SD-50 and my Behringer Model D at the same time. I will take my Yamaha WX5 wind controller and the VL70M. But I might no always take that. I could go without even a mixer but using one makes it simpler. On bigger gigs I do have a EMU B3 which I love the sound of.

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      • #5
        The advantage of using the MX200, rather than a generic MIDI sound box, with almost any Rodgers organ is that you can assign patches to your organ's pistons. You simply register the organ as required, then select the desired MIDI patches on each division by using the procedure described in the manual -- basically, press SET and the MIDI piston or tab for a given division, then while the piston or tab is flashing, choose your MIDI voice by tapping the correct key on one of the keyboards or pedals (as laid out in the manual). Once you have your desired registration, including whatever MX200 sounds you wish to use with that registration, just save it all to one of the general pistons. Next time you press that piston, the organ will of course turn on the desired stops and will also select the MIDI patches you saved.

        I can't say for sure, but I sorta doubt that any other MIDI sound box out there will interface so closely with a Rodgers organ and its pistons. I could be wrong though, and would stand corrected it someone else has information to the contrary.

        It's the same way with an Allen organ -- using an Allen Expander with any modern Allen organ will allow you to associate a custom set of MIDI voices with each piston. But AFAIK, an Allen box won't do that when connected to a Rodgers organ.
        John
        ----------
        *** Please post your questions about technical service or repair matters ON THE FORUM. Do not send your questions to me or another member by private message. Information shared is for the benefit of the entire organ community, but other folks will not be helped by information we exchange in private messages!

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