KORG Pa500 MidEast
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Product Details - KORG Pa500 MidEast
FAQ    
Startup Settings
Operating System
Display
Style Play
Style Record
Song Play
 
SongBook
Sequencer
Effects
Disk
Quarter Tone



Startup Settings


Q) How do I set-up the starting parameters of the Korg Pa500 MidEast - i.e., which Sounds are selected, and how they are configured, when turning the instrument on?

A) Set the desired parameters, then save them in Performance 1-1 (page menu > Write Performance). Performance 1-1 will be automatically selected when turning the instrument on.

Q) How do I keep my start-up settings unchanged, even after choosing different Performances and STSs?

A) Press GLOBAL, then choose the General Controls menu item. Go to the Lock page, and lock all the options you like. These parameters will not change when choosing a different Performance or STS
To save these locks for the next time you turn your Korg Pa500 MidEast on, choose the Write Global-Global Setup command from the page menu.




Operating System

Q) When loading a new version of the Operating System and Musical Resources, should I load all subsequent versions starting from version 1.0?

A) No, just load the latest version. By loading the new Operating System and Musical Resources, you also load all the features added with all the previous updates.




Display

Q) Can I use a pen or pencil on the touch screen?

A) Yes, you can, provided you do not write on it or scratch its surface. The best solution could be a pencil's rubber side.




Style Play

Q) How can I set a global split point different than C4?

A) The split point is memorized into each Performance or STS, by means of the Write Performance or Write Single Touch Setting page menu command. When choosing a different Performance or STS, a different split point might be selected (unless the Split Point Lock is turned on).
If you like to always keep a split point different than C4, here is how to set a global split point (using the Expert interface):

Go to the main page of the Style Play or Song Play mode.
Choose Performance 1 of Bank 1, that you will use to store the default settings.
Press the Split tab to see the Split Point panel.
Select your desired global split point.
Close the lock icon next to the Split Point parameter (Split Point Lock).
Select the Write Performance command from the page menu, then choose Performance 1 of Bank 1 as the target location.
Press GLOBAL to go to the Global mode, then choose the Write Global-Global Setup command from the page menu to save the Split Point Lock status into the Global Setup in memory.
When you turn the Korg Pa500 MidEast off, then on again, the global split point will be automatically selected - and will not change, any Performance or STS should you choose.

 

Q) What is the difference between "Chord + Lower" and "Fixed Arr. + Lower" (under Style Play > Preferences > Style Preferences > Memory Mode)?

A) When the MEMORY LED is turned off, "Chord + Lower" stops the Lower and resets the Arrangement Chord, while "Fixed Arr. + Lower" stops the Lower but does not reset the Arrangement Chord.

 

Q) Can I create my own custom banks of Factory Styles?

A) You can! If you wish so, you can customize all your banks.

First of all, you'll unprotect the Factory data in memory.

Go to Disk > Preferences, and uncheck the Factory Style and Pad Protect checkbox.
Then, you will make a backup of you memory data. Instead of using the Backup Resource procedure, you'll create a new SET folder, containing ordinary data to be later loaded one by one (and not a backup archive).

Go to the Disk > Save page.
Select the ALL folder, and press Open.
Select the STYLE folder, then press Open to access the banks. Each bank corresponds to one of the buttons of the STYLE section. For example, BANK01.STY is the first button, when the upper row of names is selected.
Select the first bank, then press Save To.
In the new window that appears, choose a location into your hard disk, then press New SET, to create a SET folder where to save your data. Assign a name to the new folder (for example, MYBKP.SET), then confirm.
Press Save to save the selected bank, then confirm it being saved into the new SET folder (ex., MYBKP.SET).
Repeat the above for all the other banks.
At this point, you'll start loading data from the saved backup, to create you custom banks in memory.

Go to the Disk > Load page.
Select the backup folder (called, in the example above, MYBKP.SET) and press Open.
Select the STYLE folder, then press Open to access the banks.
Select the bank containing one of the Styles you want to load into a Factory location, and press Open to see the Styles it contains.
Select the desired Style, and press Load. A dialog box appears, asking you to select one of the available locations in memory. Select the target location, and press OK to load the Style.
Now you can rename your Styles.

With the Styles still unprotected, select the first Style to be renamed, and press RECORD. Choose the Record/Edit Current Style option.
Choose the Page menu > Write Style command, and edit the Style name.
Save the Style into the original location, proposed as default option.

Q) I feel uncomfortable in having to select Styles with the touch-screen. Is there any alternative?

A) Create a custom bank of Styles in one of the User banks, then assign the Style Up function to a footswitch.

 

Q) I want to modify a Factory Style. Is this possible?

A) Yes! Look at the relevant FAQ under the Disk section.

 

Q) How can I control the volume of the keyboard tracks, after having chosen a different Performance, Style or STS?

A) You can use a Volume/Expression pedal (optional Korg EXP-2 or XVP10) to control only the keyboard tracks.

Go to the Global > Controller > Pedal/Switch page.
Assign to the pedal the Keyboard Expression function.
Choose "Write Global-Global Setup" from the page menu, to save this setting into memory.
This will let you control the level (Expression parameter) of keyboard tracks by means of the Expression pedal, relative to the accompaniment tracks.




Style Record

Q) What happens if I create a User Style pointing to User Sounds, and then load a different set of User Sounds to the same locations?

A) The User Style will point to the newly loaded User Sounds. If the Sounds are different than the ones you used when programming the new Style, the Style will sound different.

When saving User Styles pointing to User Sounds, it is preferable to execute a Save All operation, to save both the User Styles and the User Sounds to a single folder.

Later, you will be able to execute a Load All operation, to load all User data with a single operation. The original User locations will be used for the loaded data.

Please, refer to the Disk chapter in the User's Manual, for more information on the Load All ("Loading all the User data") and Save All operations ("Saving the full memory content").

Q) How can I change the Time Signature of a Style, after the Style has been recorded?

A) You can't. You can only change the Time Signature (Meter parameter) before starting to record the Style, when the Chord Variation is still empty.

Q) How can I assign a different Sound or DrumKit to all (or several) Style Elements?

A) You can do it in three ways. We'll make an example with a DrumKit.

First option, by using the Style Record mode (this one allows you to have different Sounds for each Style Element):

Before entering the Style Record mode, go to the main page of the Style Play mode, and press TRACK SELECT to see the Style tracks. Be sure the Original Style Sounds parameter is checked, otherwise check it, and write the Style Performance into the SSD memory (page menu > Write Current Style Performance).
Enter Style Record mode.
Press MENU, and go to Style Element Track Control section.
Select the Sound/Expression page.
Select the Drum track.
Press the DRUM & PERCUSSION button, to open the Sound Select window.
Press DISPLAY HOLD to turn on its LED.
Select INTRO 1 on the control panel, and select one of the DrumKits in the Sound Select window.
Select INTRO 2 on the control panel, and select one of the DrumKits in the Sound Select window.
Go on this way with all the other Style Elements (Variation, Fill, Ending...).
Write the Style to the SSD memory (page menu > Write Style).

Second option, by using the Copy Sounds command of Style Record mode (this copies all sounds, not just the DrumKit):

Before entering the Style Record mode, go to the main page of the Style Play mode, and press TRACK SELECT to see the Style tracks. Be sure the Original Style Sounds parameter is checked, otherwise check it, and write the Style Performance into the SSD memory (page menu > Write Current Style Performance).
Enter Style Record mode.
Press MENU, and go to Style Element Track Control section.
Select the Sound/Expression page.
Select the Drum track.
Press the DRUM & PERCUSSION button, to open the Sound Select window, and select a Drum Kit.
Select the Copy Sounds command from the page menu.
While in the dialog box, select All as the target.
When done, write the Style to the SSD memory (page menu > Write Style).

A third option does not require you edit the Style, but doesn't allow different Sounds or Drum Kits in different Style Elements (Variation, Fill, Ending...):

While in the main page of the Style Play mode, press TRACK SELECT to see separate Style tracks.
Uncheck the Original Style Sounds option.
Select the Drum track.
Press the DRUM & PERCUSSION button, to open the Sound Select window, and select a Drum Kit.
Write the Style Performance (page menu > Write Style Performance)




Song Play

Q) On the Korg Pa500 MidEast, I cannot see the lyrics of a Standard MIDI File that I could regularly see on the i30. Why?

A) Some Standard MIDI Files contain lyrics in two different formats. Korg Pa500 MidEast only reads a single format at a time, due to problems (double display) encountered with some Standard MIDI Files.

Q) I wish to export to Korg Pa500 MidEast a song made on an external sequencer, in which I used more than 16 tracks. Is it possible?

A) You can, by linking both sequencers on the Pa500. In this case, you can have a 32-track song.

However, please keep in mind that, when exporting the midifile from the external sequencer, you must export it as two separate 16-track midifiles, each one containing different tracks.

This is due to the MIDI standard's limit to 16 MIDI channels. When exporting a song from a computer to the Korg Pa500 MidEast (or any other musical instrument) you must convert it to the SMF (Standard MIDI File) format, therefore to a 16-track song. So, you must split any song using more than 16 tracks/channels.

You can also check if you can pre-mix the song on just 16 tracks on the external sequencer. Sometimes, more that 16 tracks are used, but only 16 MIDI channels are effectively in use. For example, you might have used separate tracks for different string parts (violins, basses), but the same MIDI channel for all string sections has been used. In this case, you can mix two tracks in just a single MIDI channel when preparing the song for export.

When both midifiles are loaded to the sequencers, keep the Shift button pressed and press one of the Play buttons to start both sequencers at the same time.




SongBook

Q) Is there a way to rearrange the songs in SongBook, after we have made a Custom List?

A) Yes. Go to the SongBook, select the Custom List to be edited, then check the "Enable List Edit" voice from the page menu. Then go to the Edit List page, and use the Move arrows to rearrange the Songs in the list. Don't forget to press Write when done.


Q) When saving an entry with two Songs assigned to the Sequencers, I can only successfully save the Song assigned to Sequencer 1. No Song assigned to Sequencer 2 is saved.

A) That's correct. SongBook entries only save the Song assigned to Sequencer 1. So, when preparing entries for the SongBook, only work with Sequencer 1.

 

Q) Where are Custom Lists stored?

A) Into a Custom List (.SBL) file, inside the same folder as the referring SongBook (.SBD) file. To load, save or copy both the SongBook and its Custom Lists, load, save or copy the whole SONGBOOK folder, and not just the .SBD file.


Q) The SongBook can automatically recall the Style Play or Song Play mode, depending on the type of SongBook entry. How can I have the same Midi settings in both operative modes, so that I can drive my external Midi modules?

A) You must assign the same Midi Setup to both the Style Play and Song Play mode.

First of all, create a Midi Setup with your custom settings.

Press GLOBAL and shoose Midi.
Go to the Midi Out Channels page.
Program the channels as desired.
Note: if you are using an external Voice Harmonizer, set CH1 to "Chord", to let Korg Pa500 MidEast send chords.
From the page menu choose the "Write Global-Midi Setup" command to save the new Midi Setup.
Now you can assign the new Midi Setup to the Style Play mode:

Go to Style Play > Preferences > Global Setup page.
Assign the previously edited Midi Setup to the Midi Setup parameter.
From the page menu, choose the "Write Global-Style Setup" command.
Then assign it to the Song Play mode:

Go to Song Play > Preferences > General Control page.
Assign the previously edited Midi Setup to the Midi Setup parameter.
From the page menu, choose the "Write Global-Song Play Setup" command.
At this point, Korg Pa500 MidEast automatically selects the same Midi Setup whenever you switch to a different operative mode.



Sequencer

Q) After recording a song, how can I convert it to a Standard MIDI File?

A) Korg Pa500 MidEast natively saves its Songs (and Backing Sequences) as Standard MIDI Files (format 0). No conversion is needed. However, when making songs to be later exchanged with other instruments, please remember the following:

Korg Pa500 MidEast directly records in SMF format. Any SMF reader should be able to read it. Be sure the file's extension is correct (usually ".mid").
Track 10 shall be reserved to Drums. When saving a Backing Sequence, track 11 is also reserved to Drum/Percussions.
Only General MIDI-compliant Sounds do sound the same on different instruments; Korg's own Sounds will be replaced by different Sounds. The Sound map in the User's manual also shows GM-compliant Sounds.

Q) How do I change the Song's Tempo during recording?

A) Make sure the Record option is assigned to the Tempo parameter, in the right side of the Song Record mode. All Tempo changes will be recorded in the Song's Master Track, and automatically performed when playing back the Song. Please remember Tempo recording is always in overdub mode.

When in playback, the Auto option must be assigned to the Tempo parameter.




Effects

Q) How can use an Insert effect? I only see Master effects in the Pa500.

A) Pa500's FX architecture is GM compliant and conceived so that you have up to four Master effects, but you can use FX 2 (Sound mode) or FX B and D (Style Play, Song Play and Sequencer modes) as Insert effects. Here is how to program them.

Press the MENU button, and select the Effects section.
Assign the Insert effect to the FX 2 (Sound mode) or FX B or D (all other modes) processor. Assign its input a "Send" value of 127. Set the "Wet/Dry" parameter to Wet. Uncheck the "Send to Master" option (Sound mode) or uncheck the "Dry" checkbox (all other modes).
Set a value different than 0 for the "2 to 1", "B to A" or "D to C" parameter.
Set the "Send" value for FX 1, A or C a value of 0, to avoid the dry signal enters the FX processor twice.
Write the Sound, STS or Performance to memory.

Q) How can I assign Rotary Speaker's speed control to a pedal or switch?

A) You must assign the "Rotary Spkr Fast/Slow" function to one of the following controls:

footswitch (Global > Menu > Controllers > Pedal/Switch)
Assignable Switch (Style Play > Menu > Pad/Switch > Assignable Switch)

Then you must save the above settings into one of the available memory locations:

in case of Assignable Switches, into a Performance (Page Menu > Write Performance) or in an STS (Page Menu > Write STS)

You should better save into a footswitch pedal to maintain the same settings even when selecting a different Style, STS or Performance. You should use an Assignable Switch if you prefer to link your settings to a specific Performance or STS.

Q) How can I assign Rotary Speaker's speed control to the joystick?

A) You must assign the "40: Rotary Speaker" effect to the FX 2 (Sound mode) or FX B and D (all other modes) processor, then assign the JS+Y or JS-Y modulation source to the effect:

Press the MENU button, and select the Effects section.
See above how to assign the "40: Rotary Speaker" effect as an Insert effect.
Go to the FX 2, FX B or FX D page, and assign the "JS+Y" or "JS-Y" option to the "Speed Switch - Src" parameter, depending on whether you prefer to move the joystick forward or backward. Assign Slow or Fast to the "Speed Switch" parameter to decide the starting speed.
Write the Sound, STS or Performance to memory.

Q) Is there a way to synchronize the internal effects of the Korg Pa500 MidEast with the tempo values?

A) Yes, it is. Go to the Effects section, and choose the edit page of the effect to be sync'd (for example, if you assigned a BPM Delay to FX D, select the "FX D" page).

Look for the BPM parameter. If it is there, the effect can be sync'd to the internal Tempo, or to the incoming MIDI Clock. If so, assign the MIDI value to the BPM parameter. The effect will be sync'd to the Tempo.




Disk

Q) I want to modify a Factory Style and save it in a different position. Is this possible?

A) Yes! Here is how to do:

Uncheck the Disk > Preferences > Factory Style Protect parameter.
Go to Disk > Save. Select the ALL folder and press Open. Select the STYLE folder and press Open. Select the bank containing the Style you are looking for and press Open. Select the Style you want to modify and press Save.
Save the Style in a new .SET folder.
Reload the Style in an empty User location in memory, or in a Factory location you want to overwrite.
Edit the Style patterns in Style Record mode, and the Style Performance in Style Play mode. Save the changes.
Check the Disk > Preferences > Factory Style Protect parameter again, to protect Factory Styles.


Quarter Tone

Q) In Quick Record mode, after I hit the Record button, I can no longer hear the Quarter Tone. Why?

A) The Quarter Tone function is a realtime one, that is not saved in a Performance. This is because this function is meant for "on-the-fly" change of scale notes. It is not meant as a replacement of a dedicated User Scale.

To have a scale containing Quarter Tones in Quick Record mode, you must choose it as the Sub Scale, assign it to a set of tracks, and save it into a Performance.

While in Style Play mode, go to the Main Page > Sub Scale tab, or to the Mixer/Tuning > Sub Scale edit page.
Assign to the Scale parameter the User scale, and use the keyboard diagram to edit each note of the scale.
Go to Preferences > Style Preferences > Scale Mode, and choose the set of tracks to apply the Sub Scale to.
Save the Performance (now containing the modified User scale).
Enter Quick Record mode with that Performance selected (or you can select it while in the Quick Record page).
Also, you can assign the Sub Scale to each track after recording, by going to the Sequencer Edit > Mixer/Tuning > Sub-Scale page.

The Quarter Tone function can also be selected "on-the-fly" by means of pedals, while in Quick Record mode.