Nord's classical Virtual Analog Synth Nord LEAD 1/2/2x/3/4/A1 and Nord Rack versions

Changing keybed in Nord Lead 3

Postby Ericb » 21 Oct 2020, 07:29

Since several (most) keys were sticking and I had a broken key, I decided to try to change the whole keybed of my Nord Lead 3.

I found that the Lead 3 uses a Fatar TP/9S and was able to order a replacement of this keybed.

Before I go ahead and transfer the payment, I was hoping to see if anyone here has any experience with this. Is removing the keybed as easy as disassembling and disconnecting ribbon cables? Or is there soldering involved?

Also, the TP/9S is listed as not having aftertouch, yet the Nord Lead 3 does. Is this possibly something that Clavia modifies? If so this would likely make replacement difficult to impossible.

My keybed will be unusable eventually so I though I’d at least buy this replacement for the future, but if it is going to be an impossible job, I may save myself the money and think about upgrading to another board instead.

Any input would be greatly appreciated.
Last edited by Ericb on 21 Oct 2020, 07:42, edited 1 time in total.
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Changing keybed in Nord Lead 3


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Re: Changing keybed in Nord Lead 3

Postby 23skidoo » 22 Oct 2020, 21:03

Why not just clean and repair the keybed you have? Replacement keys are not hard to come by.
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Re: Changing keybed in Nord Lead 3

Postby anotherscott » 22 Oct 2020, 23:05

TP9S is available in various configurations, including with and without aftertouch. If the aftertouch mechanism in your keyboard is working fine, it might not matter that you get a replacement without it, you might be able to make use of what you already have.

http://www.fatar.com/Pages/TP_9S.htm
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Re: Changing keybed in Nord Lead 3

Postby 23skidoo » 24 Oct 2020, 17:24

The aftertouch in the NL3 is an adhesive pressure sensitive strip... it glues to a surface under the keys and has a foam top that the underside of the keys bears on. It's a very specific connector and doesn't match what Fatar is currently selling, from what I've learned. You MUST get a keybed with aftertouch as the keys and their attachment points are strengthened to handle the extra pressure - I am not sure that the non-AT TP/9S will be strong enough or easily retro-modifiable for AT correctly, especially not certain it accommodates the older style ribbon or not. Syntaur advised me to buy this part https://syntaur.com/Items.php?Item=4450 and trim it to length. However they are only selling used items and I want a brand new one to replace the existing one I have. The adhesive makes replacing them somewhat of a difficult and risky task however.

Again, my recommendation is that you service the keybed it has, not hope that whatever the newer models of TP9S are will be a drop in... the synth is over 15 years old and it's not at all a guarantee that a new TP9S has the same mounting provisions or uses the same connectors.
NLA1, NL3, NS3, Prophet Rev2, stack of Elektron, some Moogs, s*** to record with, etc. yadda yadda you know the deal blah blah gear.

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