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  • Trouble with Allen R-255 MIDI volume control

    I'm a pipe organ guy, and not familiar with the insides of a Allen organ. One of my clients has an Allen R-255, Built in 2002. The regular expression pedal volume control is working fine. However, the volume control on the MIDI module (pull out drawer) is not functioning, and the MIDI only plays at full volume. This church client is almost 200 miles away from my home base, so it would be great if I could go over there, with knowledge of what to do. I have in mind to take a static grounding wrist band with me, some DeOxIt contact cleaner, and possibly some soldering tools, in case I run into oxidation problems, or hair line cracks in the connection plugs. Many thanks for advice!

    Jay

  • #2
    It could be a setting in the midi module (set to not express or not configured correctly). It could be that the midi messages aren't getting to the module. It might be set up like my ADC, where everything gets mixed together and expressed on the mixer board but the midi box is plugged into one of the ports that doesn't express. Hopefully, someone with more experience will weigh in.
    Sam
    Home: Allen ADC-4500 Church: Allen MDS-5
    Files: Allen Tone Card (TC) Database, TC Info, TC Converter, TC Mixer, ADC TC SF2, and MOS TC SF2, ADC TC Cad/Rvt, MOS TC Cad/Rvt, Organ Database, Music Library, etc. PM for unlinked files.

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    • #3
      If he means that the volume KNOB on the expander unit in the drawer is not affecting the MIDI voice volume, then it is probably a bad pot or the pot has come unsoldered from the pc board inside, or a wire has dropped off it, if it is not mounted directly on a board. The cure would be to try de-oxing the pot, checking for good solder, measuring across the resistor element to make sure it isn't broken internally, etc. Worst case you might have to replace the control. I believe it's basically a 5K pot, but it's one of those "fancy" high-end pots that manufacturers like to call "position sensors" or some such. (Don't quote me on that, as I'm going by what I saw inside an older Allen expander that I tore into once.)

      If he means that the expression pedal is not controlling the MIDI voice volumes, that is probably a setting in the Console Controller that has gotten changed. You can restore all MIDI settings to normal factory parameters by using the "re-initialize" routine in the Console Controller, a procedure that is explained in detail in the user's guide.

      On all MDS, Renaissance, and later Allen models, the MIDI expander responds directly to the expression control messages in the MIDI stream and does not depend on any external audio expression circuitry.
      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!

      https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

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      • #4
        Originally posted by jbird604 View Post
        On all MDS, Renaissance, and later Allen models, the MIDI expander responds directly to the expression control messages in the MIDI stream and does not depend on any external audio expression circuitry.
        Thanks John. Now the mixer board on the MDS at church makes more sense to me.
        Sam
        Home: Allen ADC-4500 Church: Allen MDS-5
        Files: Allen Tone Card (TC) Database, TC Info, TC Converter, TC Mixer, ADC TC SF2, and MOS TC SF2, ADC TC Cad/Rvt, MOS TC Cad/Rvt, Organ Database, Music Library, etc. PM for unlinked files.

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        • #5
          Thanks John. I'll take your advice and see if I can find some sort of mechanical issue. If it's the pot, I'd think that Allen has the replacement for it....perhaps 5 times the normal price, but it will fit the space where the old one came out. Sometimes, it makes for a more satisfied user, if the replacement is a duplicate of the original part. Thanks again! Jay.

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