Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

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R Brooklyn
Posts: 14
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2011 3:10 pm

Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

Postby R Brooklyn » Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:21 pm

How are people doing with expression pedals?
Which ones have you tried?
What software are you Using?

Lemeno!
R Brooklyn
Posts: 14
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2011 3:10 pm

Re: Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

Postby R Brooklyn » Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:28 pm

- It's been just ok.
- The only one that I have got to work pretty well is a Boss FV50L volume pedal using an insert cable.

I have tried two ernie ball jr volume pedals (line level and instrument level) with insert cables but they are not working so well,
(Anyone have the ERnie Ball Jr volume pedal > epression pedal mod that guy does? Interested.)
The other exp pedals I tried were not working; Maudio, behringer, etc... but was with the early softstep software. (on 1.1 now)

I'm using it with Mainstage with SoftStep in standalone mode. (btw, very confusing expression pedal setup for standalone mode)
ericzang
Posts: 40
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2011 6:15 am

Re: Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

Postby ericzang » Thu Apr 14, 2011 12:07 am

i have success with an old ensoniq pedal and an old proel (sorry no model number on it).

a couple i have did not work well: korg exp2 (the one I have is also quite old), rfx 402.

all my pedals are at least about 10+ years old though.
soundog
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Apr 15, 2011 5:21 pm

Re: Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

Postby soundog » Thu Apr 21, 2011 7:45 am

It would be helpful to have some guidelines for expressions pedals tested or recommended. Specifications?
Sam_K
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2011 3:48 am

Re: Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

Postby Sam_K » Thu Apr 21, 2011 3:38 pm

I agree with soundog. Don't KMI have a list of known working pedals? I looked around the website and SoftStep manual but I can't find anything.

I don't have an expression pedal but I'd like to get one for plugging into the SoftStep and I'd like to know what my choices are. At the very least KMI could let us know which ones they use for testing in the workshop.

EDIT: Even better would be if KMI published a technical specification and circuit diagram showing what kind of expression pedal circuit is expected on that socket so we can do our own research on which pedals fit the spec. This really should be an appendix in the manual.
Kaspar
Posts: 37
Joined: Sun Feb 20, 2011 3:09 am

Re: Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

Postby Kaspar » Fri Apr 22, 2011 1:16 pm

I think SS expects an expression pedal not a volume pedal.
That would explain some of the pedals not working.

All expression pedals should work, or am I mistaken?
R Brooklyn
Posts: 14
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2011 3:10 pm

Re: Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

Postby R Brooklyn » Wed Apr 27, 2011 4:11 pm

Yes - specs for what type expression pedal is expected would be helpful.
soundog
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Apr 15, 2011 5:21 pm

Re: Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

Postby soundog » Thu Apr 28, 2011 9:50 am

I have an old Ernie Ball VP Jr volume pedal that I had refitted with a 100K linear taper pot for use as an expression pedal. I wasn't using it any more, so I wired the pedal with a 1/8" female stereo/TRS phone jack. Now I can use a standard 1/8" stereo phone cable to connect the pedal to the SS. After using the calibration in the SS software, it works great.

FYI, the use of "volume pedal" and "expression pedal" get tossed around loosely (too much pot?) And sometimes expression pedals are wired to work with specific pieces of equipment. Some pedals use a linear pot, some use an audio/log taper pot. The SoftStep is pretty accommodating, given its calibration method, but I'm guessing it still requires a 3-wire connection. Most guitar pedal jacks just have 2-wire jacks (mono).

If you have an old geetar volume or wah pedal you wanna try, you should still be able to use it with the SS, but you will probably need to rewire the pedal's pot like I did: wire one of the outside pot connectors to the ground/sleeve of a stereo 1/8" female jack. Then wire the center connector of the pot to the center contact (ring) of the jack. Next, wire the remaining pot contact to the tip connection of the jack. Cable it up and try it with the SS, but be sure to calibrate (check the manual on how). If the pedal works backward for the way you want to use it, just swap your ground and tip connections.
ronandc
Posts: 23
Joined: Sun Feb 27, 2011 7:27 am
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Re: Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

Postby ronandc » Sat May 14, 2011 10:40 am

I'm using a Boss FV500L.

It works fine BUT - and I don't know if this is the solely the exp. pedal's fault or down to the SoftStep - but the full physical range of motion of the pedal doesn't get used to send the MIDI.
There are large dead spots at both the heel-down and toe-down ends of the pedal. Very frustrating because it's really difficult to predict when the pedal will start and finish doing it's thing as you move it.

You're swivelling the pedal with your foot and there is no tactile feedback to tell you when it's about to clear the dead area and actually start sending MIDI.

Anyone else have this problem with the Bozz FV500L? Anyone have a different pedal that works fine without any dead zones?
SoftStep, Windows 7, Ableton Live 8.2.1, LoopBe30, Rig Kontrol 3, iPhone app "Control" with RTPMIDI
R Brooklyn
Posts: 14
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2011 3:10 pm

Re: Expression pedals: what ya got? how's it working?

Postby R Brooklyn » Mon May 23, 2011 8:59 am

I am using a boss FV50L (with an insert cable.), not sure if that's the same as your FV500L. It is not perfect. the upper end of the range moves really fast, possibly b/c the pot is tapered for volume, not for expression. I have compensated with the curves available in Mainstage, but it still movers too fast at the upper end, right where I want the most accuracy. It doesn't have quite the large dead spots or huge jumps all the other pedals i've tried have.

The other pedals i've tried, both expression and volume (with an insert cable) have not fared any better; a line 6 expression pedal, a MGear (Maudio) exp pdl, a behringer v/exp pdl, an ernie ball vp junior.

I was hoping to use an ernie ball vp junior b/c it's so accurate feeling, I would be willing to send the vp junior in to get it modded if I knew it would work, but would I want some pot specs first.

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