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Another "grailin and shackin" post... with a twist!

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  • Another "grailin and shackin" post... with a twist!

    I need some help figuring out how to do a bit of creative cabling to connect pads to my TD-10. The goal is, as is often the case, to maximize the number of triggers I can connect to my two available inputs. But there's quite an interesting twist in this particular iteration, or at least I think so.

    The Situation

    I have two pads, and two available inputs. One pad is a PD-6, a simple single-piezo pad. The other pad is a Visu-Lite hi-hat, which has a piezo on the bow, and a trigger of unknown origin (as in I'm not sure what the heck it is) on the bell. Additionally, I have added a Tapeswitch ribbon switch (FSR) as an edge trigger to the hi-hat, as per BtnkBndt's instructions.

    So far with a little adapting and cabling, I have managed to get the Visu-lite working with the Tapeswitch as an edge trigger. That's the bow (head) of the Visu-lite and the edge (rim) via the Tapeswitch, both via the hi-hat input. This works WONDERFULLY. But then there's that bell trigger, staring me in the face, unused.

    The Approach

    So that's 4 triggers total, the two originally on the Visu-lite hat, the Tapeswitch added to the hi-hat, and the PD-6. My idea was to plug the bell trigger of the hi-hat in into my AUX2 input which currently contains my PD-6. I have had no success doing this. I thought my lack of success might be because of the bell trigger being the wrong type, but snce I'm not sure what kind of trigger is in the bell, I decided to do some experimenting. My results are rather interesting (and confusing!)

    The Mystery

    The Visu-lite hi-hat has a stereo 1/4" socket that normally connects to the stereo hi-hat input. Using this configuration on my TD-10, a bow hit yields the HH "head" sound, and the bell yields the HH "rim" sound, similar to how a CY-12H or PD-7 works. This makes me think the bell trigger is FSR, since the HH input doesn't support dual-piezo pads.

    BUT... If I "Y" the output of my Visu-Lite out (via a stereo --> dual mono Y-cable) and plug the separate mono channels into two separate inputs (HH and AUX2), I get two distinct sounds from the bow and the bell triggers (bow triggers HH "head", bell triggers AUX2 "head.). This makes it seem like the bell trigger is a PIEZO, since FSR's, to my knowledge, are just on/off switches that only work when a piezo is struck at the same time on the head of the same input.

    Given the above results, does anyone have any ideas what this mystery trigger is? And, with that knowledge, can anyone suggest how I might route the hi-hat bell through my AUX2 input, where the PD-6 currently lives?

    I've read up as much as I can regarding the TD-10 and the various permutations and combinations of piezo/FSR triggers, but I'm still confused. Can anyone help me solve this mystery?
    kit pr0n.

  • #2
    Originally posted by feefer
    Hi Tony,
    The question: is the bell made out of a hard plastic material, or is it a soft rubber? Just like your rim-switch, the FSR/ribbon switch must be compressed to function: can you compress the bell, i.e. is it swightly mobile compared to the main playing surface (bow)?

    The bell has a rubber skin, but when I peel that away, there's just hard plastic underneath. No sign of any kind of ribbon/tape looking switchie-thingie. So by looks, I'd say it's a piezo, not seeing any kind of pliable compressable switch. BTW the model # is 1300B-RHC.

    So if it's a piezo, the question then becomes how the heck it would be working under normal conditions (with the bell triggering the "rim" sound.)

    I should point out that bell response in this configuration wasn't great, I had to dial in settings for quite a while (especially the scan time) to get the bell to work, and even then, it takes a hit with the shoulder of the stick to activate it.. When I split the two triggers to two different "head" inputs with a Y-adapter, the bell and bow are both very responsive.

    So I'm starting to think that somehow Visu-lite hats have some special dual-piezo configuration which works in the hi-hat input, but not very well, and requiring some pretty finnicky trigger settings. Is this possible?

    Last edited by tonycpsu; 01-25-03, 12:41 PM.
    kit pr0n.


    • #3
      Ah, okay, my understanding was that dual-piezo pads simply don't work. I wonder if there's anything special about the Visulite design that makes it work okay. I can get 100% triggering on the Visulite on the HH input, if you define 100% as "100% of the times I whack the bell on a particular 1/3rd of the surface ith the shoulder of my stick , I get a bell hit." It's almost like playing a CY-15R with a really bad case of the bell triggering problem. You gotta be kinda conscious of where to hit the bell, and give it a pretty heavy hit.

      Okay, it sounds like your Y-adapter approach will work. The missing ingredient for me is the 1/4" stereo -> dual 1/4" stereo Y-cable. I had been using 1/4" stereo -> dual 1/4" mono adapters. Thinking about it, I now realize why that won't work, since the FSR on the other pad needs the signal from the piezo on that pad to go through at the same time.

      Another semi-related question... I had seen a thread in a forum search one time which mentioned a PolePad or something similar that people in the thread said was a "dual FSR" pad. I have never heard of such a thing. Did they mean dual piezo? A "dual FSR" pad wouldn't work, would it?
      kit pr0n.


      • #4
        I'm not sure how to describe the material that the bell is made of... I wouldn't say it's very soft or anything, but it's not the same acrylic material that the hat is made of. I guess it provides some kind of shock-absorption.

        Oh well, for now I'm going to try to live without the bell for awhile, since I don't have $$$ for a PD7 or the like right now, and I'm not sure how much I love the idea of buying a PD-7 and having the head sound be the same as the HH-bell. Maybe at some point I'll look into a trigger->MIDI converter for more pad options. I do find it a bit easier to use my new edge trigger than the bell... I think Visulite should offer a hi-hat with bow and edge in the future. They did tell me they're working on a "next generation" hi-hat, but said it wouldn't be anytime in the near future. The TD-12 will probably be out by that time...

        Anyway thanks for helping me work through all this stuff. This technology can be confusing sometimes.
        Last edited by tonycpsu; 01-25-03, 06:43 PM.
        kit pr0n.