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

Nord Rack 3 Issue - Max Polyphony Distorted Noise

Postby dubno » 10 Jan 2021, 04:13

Hi Everyone,

I just picked up a Nord Rack 3 and it has a bit of an issue that I haven't seen discussed before. Everything sounds fine as long as you keep the note count low or the release tight, but the minute you start upping your voice count and adding long releases so that the polyphony increases - the unit will make bit crushed distorted sounds (fairly loud) mixed in with the other normal audio. It sounds almost like a chip dying. On some sounds it makes a VERY loud distorted noise blast if you trigger a few too many things. Increasing the complexity of the sound (using audio rate modulation or FM style sounds + arpeggiator) also seems to increase the distorted blast / crumbling bit crushed sound behavior.

I have another Nord Lead 3 and have been able to transfer patches between the two units. Patches that sound perfect on the NL3 sound totally wrecked on the NR3. It is definitely an issue with the NR3. Was hoping to downsize, but looks like I'm going to have just keep the NL3. Such a great sound - and very misunderstood and underrated.

Anyways, this is probably a long shot but just curious if anyone has run into this before and any possible solutions. Any help is greatly appreciated!
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Nord Rack 3 Issue - Max Polyphony Distorted Noise


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Re: Nord Rack 3 Issue - Max Polyphony Distorted Noise

Postby Mr. Marko » 16 Jan 2021, 07:53

I just sent my NL3 back to Sweden for the same problem...DSP chips were flaking out.

Tell tale aspect - distortion volume is almost constant regardless of turning down the volume knob until you get down to zero.

Call Jam and get a return authorization number - it takes a while for Sweden to get it back to you...mine just arrived a few days ago and the process started in August...corona had things pretty screwed up then.
Last edited by Mr. Marko on 16 Jan 2021, 07:53, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Nord Rack 3 Issue - Max Polyphony Distorted Noise

Postby 23skidoo » 18 Jan 2021, 00:19

Oof, that's a nasty problem. I hope you get it sorted quickly. Please keep us posted on it (that's for both of you!). I've got an NL3 and it's one of my favourite synths ever. I'm hoping you both get good service, and am taking notes in case mine ever suffers the same fate.
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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Re: Nord Rack 3 Issue - Max Polyphony Distorted Noise

Postby oliverbajza » 09 Feb 2021, 18:49

I had the exact same fault with my Nord Rack 3 and I managed to fix it. Some of the legs of the DSP IC's lifted from the tracks of the PCB. I'd guess probably the soldering wasn't perfect to start with when it left the factory but due to the heat inside of the Nord (Power supply) it slowly develops this fault. So basically some of the legs won't connect to the circuit anymore.
As it is hard to tell which leg has a bad soldering I did reheat all 6 DSP IC's. That cured the problem. If you can find someone who is comfortable doing SMD soldering with a heatgun then you can try to fix it, just be careful not to overheat it. If you need any help feel free to message me!
Last edited by oliverbajza on 09 Feb 2021, 18:49, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Nord Rack 3 Issue - Max Polyphony Distorted Noise

Postby jgoodliffe » 03 May 2021, 19:45

Glad to have found this thread - my Lead 3 has these exact symptoms.

Did you receive your synth back from Clavia yet? If so, what did it cost?

I wonder if ye-olde board in the oven trick will work.... [to reflow the solder]..
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