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Keys don't work in random pattern formation

Counting the keys from left to right, from switch on every third key won't work, run your finger up and down the keyboard and then three keys don't work out of every five, press lots of keys randomly and the left to right pattern is working, not not, working working working, not not, working, not not, working working working, not not, various numerical patterns of keys not working. The three tranistors on a heatsink in the power supply were all dry joints but soldering them didn't help.

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  • Anonymous Dec 09, 2008


    Generic problem for all Roland Musical Instruments
    Keys don't work in random pattern formation

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    posted by djfixit on Dec 02, 2008

    Counting the keys from left to right, from switch on every third key won't work, run your finger up and down the keyboard and then three keys don't work out of every five, press lots of keys randomly and the left to right pattern is working, not not, working working working, not not, working, not not, working working working, not not, various numerical patterns of keys not working. The three tranistors on a heatsink in the power supply were all dry joints but soldering them didn't help.

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Fred Yearian

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  • Roland Master
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The keys are scanned in a matrix. It sounds like two of the matrix lines are broken. They may be broken on the board which the keys contact. These are often conductive rubber "pills" pressed onto finger like patterns of circuit traces. The traces have a black coating in the contact area. If the keys have been "mashed", sometimes the board is cracked. IF the crack goes through one of these contact areas, that is fatal. That board needs to be replaced.
A loose cable where two wires of the matrix aren't contacting would do it as well.

Posted on Jul 29, 2009

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Wisdom required


If you can find the C-below-middle-C ?

Put your small finger on C,
your next finger on the next white key: D,
your middle finger on the next white key: E
your index finger on the next white key: F
your thumb on the next white key: G

Lift your fingers away from D and F -- to keep this simple -- all we did was identify the D and E and F and G keys, relative to the C key.

Press C and E and G (small, middle, thumb)
to play a "major" chord in C.

Move your fingers "up":
C to D, E to F-sharp, G to A,
and play a "major" chord in D.

Move your fingers "up":
D to D-sharp, F-sharp to G, and A to A-sharp,
and play the chord in D-sharp (usually called 'E-flat').

Move your fingers "up":
D-sharp to F, G to A, and A-sharp to C,
and play the chord in F.

Move your fingers "up",
F to G, A to B, and C to D,
and play the chord in G.

Go back to the starting position (C-E-G),
and move "down": C to B-flat, E to D, and G to F,
and play the chord in B-flat.

So far, you have C-major, D-major, E-flat-major, F-major, G-major, and B-flat-major.

There are more chords, but most pop-music is in one of these keys.

Give it a try.

A lot of left-hand stuff is just the small-finger and thumb, omitting the middle finger, e.g., C&G,
to avoid a too "muddy" sound.

Or, "stretch" your hand: C-and-G-and-the-next-higher-C.

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I just fixed this exact problem today. It took me a while to figure out how to get to the key bed, but it's not impossible. I'll try to retrace my steps and describe them as well as I can:

- Turn the keyboard upside down on a table with the joystick hanging off the table. To make my directions easier to follow, the joystick should be on your left. When I say "front", I mean towards the keys, "back" towards the knobs.
- Have 3 cups for the different types of screws you'll find. A magnet-tipped screwdriver is *essential*, as some of the screws are hard to get to, and you don't want to lose them in there.
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- Here's the tricky part... unplug all connectors from the center board. You might want to take some detailed pictures before you do that because there are some empty sockets on the board. It's actually easy to figure out what goes where because most connectors are of different sizes.
- Unplug the two red connectors that go to the left side of the key bed, and the one that goes to the small board on the key bed, but NOT the small white one. That's the aftertouch cable and it doesn't need to be disconnected.
- Unscrew the center board from the horizontal rail in the middle of the case. There should be 4 screws and a cable tie is connected to each one. There are 3 black screws in the back around the digital output slots (there wasn't a digital card on the Trinity I worked on.) -- unscrew those and remove the board VERY carefully not to pull any wires along the way.
- There are two silver plastic grounding slips -- one on the far left, one on the far right. I know you have to remove the left one, I'm not sure about the right one, but remove it just in case.
- Unscrew the long aluminum piece at the very front, the one that is under the keys when the keyboard is right side up.
- Unplug the small connector off the floppy drive. You can leave the ribbon cable connected. The are 4 screws (I think) that hold the floppy drive in place. Unscrew those and remove the drive.
- There should be 1 more screw holding the key bed in place, and it's right by one of the floppy drive screws. Get that one out and pull the key bed upward using the metal piece in the middle -- it may be stuck to the horizontal rail, even though it's unscrewed. Pry it up gently with a screwdriver if you have to. The key bed should come out. If it doesn't, check what might be keeping it in place. Don't ever force anything out of a keyboard.

OK, that's part one. Part two is fairly easy...

- Set the key bed on a table. Remove the long plastic strip at the top.
- To remove a black key, first you have to remove the two surrounding white keys. Grab the bottom part of the key (where you play it) and push towards the top (where there's a square hole). Pay very close attention to how the key is removed, because reinstalling it is the same way, just reversed (obviously). There's a flat spring underneath the key, don't worry if it pops out. It's pretty self-explanatory how to put it back.
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Follow the instructions in reverse order to put it all back together. I typed this by memory, so I may have skipped a step or two. Taking this keyboard apart wasn't as easy as I expected, but not as hard as it looked. It just takes patience and being careful.

I hope this helps!

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