General Discussion of the Nord Stage (EX), Nord Stage 2 (EX), and Nord Stage 3 Synths, FAQ, Troubleshooting etc.

Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2

Postby Bjosko » 10 Mar 2018, 14:48

cgrafx wrote:
Bjosko wrote:I am not so sure about that. I received my NS in late September last year, fresh from factory, I think. It was shipped with 1.04. Same when I got my Lead A1 2-3 years after release, also with an old OS onboard.


I can guarantee NORD is not building new NS3's and putting old firmware on them.

Product coming off the assembly line at NORD will have the latest version of the OS available at the time of the build.


I am not so sure about that.
Normally production are doing in batch. Not everything need to be done at the factory.
They might have a bunch of prefabricated cards on their shelves with installed OS from when they was produced on. As long as they do not have found any hardware issue on this card related to the production, they are installed as they are together with the rest of the keyboard, the keyboard are getting tested by their regular test procedure ( and I think the Mod wheel on the Compact model will receive extra attention, hopefully a modification on that part have been done).

cgrafx wrote: have a NS3C I just purchased and is scheduled to be delivered on Tuesday of next week. My hope is that it will have v1.36 on it, but If it arrives with anything older than v1.32 (2017-12-15) I will send it back.


Well, it are not fresh milk, so it will not go out on date, but freshly assembled, with latest system check, but still can be with an older OS onboard.
But lets see when your unit show up, I doubt there are old warehouse inventory you receive.
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Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2


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Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2

Postby analogika » 10 Mar 2018, 15:04

One possibility is that there might be early units that were recalled before they were sold and had the mod wheel connector fixed before going out again.

From what I recall rigorously following these forums, that was the only hardware issue plaguing the series at the start. Everything else turned out to be just individual defects — a broken key, or transport damage, or a defective component. Normal things.
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Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2

Postby anotherscott » 10 Mar 2018, 16:00

cgrafx wrote:However, a NS3 purchased today with v1.04 on it would indicate a 7-8 month delay which can only happen in one of two ways (either the product is old stock and has been sitting on a shelf or the product is a return).

I agree with Bjosko, there is a third way. Just because each unit is assembled by hand, that doesn't mean they make each component from scratch every time they make a board. Components that are stock parts or that can be easily built to order are probably warehoused in small quantities and re-ordered frequently, as needed. But electronics that require custom fabrication are much cheaper in large quantity. So while I could imagine their having fewer than 100 Fatar TP-whatever actions in their warehouse on any given day, the custom circuit boards are probably ordered 1000+ at a time, they might have a year's worth in the warehouse before they even ship the first unit. It is not necessarily worth their time to manually update each unit before it ships, especially when, by the time that unit reaches a customer, there is a reasonable chance one would want to update it again anyway (i.e. they'd merely be replacing one outdated OS with another outdated OS).
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Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2

Postby cgrafx » 10 Mar 2018, 22:12

Bjosko wrote:I am not so sure about that.
Normally production are doing in batch. Not everything need to be done at the factory.
They might have a bunch of prefabricated cards on their shelves with installed OS from when they was produced on. As long as they do not have found any hardware issue on this card related to the production, they are installed as they are together with the rest of the keyboard, the keyboard are getting tested by their regular test procedure ( and I think the Mod wheel on the Compact model will receive extra attention, hopefully a modification on that part have been done).

Well, it are not fresh milk, so it will not go out on date, but freshly assembled, with latest system check, but still can be with an older OS onboard.
But lets see when your unit show up, I doubt there are old warehouse inventory you receive.


The components are built in batches but you can't easily load the OS on to the system board until it is in a fully assembled system.

Again they are making these as fast as they can produce them, and even if there was a way to batch program the boards outside of a fully assembled keyboard they don't have thousands of the boards sitting around from 8 or 9 months ago waiting to be dropped into a case.

This isn't how manufacturing works. Even more so at a small company building small batches of product at a time.
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Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2

Postby anotherscott » 10 Mar 2018, 23:20

cgrafx wrote:The components are built in batches but you can't easily load the OS on to the system board until it is in a fully assembled system.

It's possible that the entire original OS is in ROM and is installed as part of the process of manufacturing of the main board; and that they updates subsequently load into a bit of flash that patches that ROM. At any rate, I would not assume the boards arrive at the Nord factory "empty" of any OS.

cgrafx wrote:Again they are making these as fast as they can produce them, and even if there was a way to batch program the boards outside of a fully assembled keyboard they don't have thousands of the boards sitting around from 8 or 9 months ago waiting to be dropped into a case.

We don't know what quantity equates to "as fast as they can produce them." Regardless, they could certainly have components from 8 or 9 months ago. There's no reason they could not have bought plenty of boards up front to cover, say, their first year's production (or more!), if that were much more cost-effective than having them manufactured a couple of hundred at a time. Point is simply, we don't know.
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Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2

Postby cgrafx » 11 Mar 2018, 00:52

anotherscott wrote:
cgrafx wrote:The components are built in batches but you can't easily load the OS on to the system board until it is in a fully assembled system.

It's possible that the entire original OS is in ROM and is installed as part of the process of manufacturing of the main board; and that they updates subsequently load into a bit of flash that patches that ROM. At any rate, I would not assume the boards arrive at the Nord factory "empty" of any OS.


There is zero evidence of a preloaded OS on ROM on any Nord keyboard aside from the boot loader. It is all flash, doing otherwise would be an utter waste of engineering time, money, and board real-estate.

cgrafx wrote:Again they are making these as fast as they can produce them, and even if there was a way to batch program the boards outside of a fully assembled keyboard they don't have thousands of the boards sitting around from 8 or 9 months ago waiting to be dropped into a case.


anotherscott wrote:We don't know what quantity equates to "as fast as they can produce them." Regardless, they could certainly have components from 8 or 9 months ago. There's no reason they could not have bought plenty of boards up front to cover, say, their first year's production (or more!), if that were much more cost-effective than having them manufactured a couple of hundred at a time. Point is simply, we don't know.


Nobody who knows anything about production would pre-build a years worth of product before it ships and they can gauge what demand will be, and what un-expected problems will need to be addressed.

Its not that it couldn't happen, but Nord is not new at this process. Its not cheaper to build 5000 of something that you can't sell or have to scrap because it has to be fixed.

You build what you need to fill your first orders and make sure you don't have any major issues before ordering in large quantities.

For the sake of argument, lets say what you propose is true and the OS is preloaded into a redundant ROM, it would still be a mind-boggling poor practice to not load the latest OS on the keyboard before it was shipped.
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Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2

Postby derrellpiper » 11 Mar 2018, 05:07

My impression as a software engineer, is that the firmware contains the entire OS. That's consistent with the write times for the flash during OS updates.
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Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2

Postby analogika » 11 Mar 2018, 15:25

Purchasing and finishing the entire run’s worth of boards ahead of time is a perfect way to bankrupt a company: if you have a years’ or two years’ worth of product investment tied up and sitting there (and consequently a years’ worth of potential profits), a single error in the hardware wipes out the entire investment.

I can’t remember where I read/heard this just recently, but someone was talking about a major company preloading the wrong type of a single component for an SMD assembly (I seem to remember it was for cellphones?). It took about two or three hours for the error to be discovered, and by that time, the ruined production run had eaten the company's entire profit for that fiscal YEAR.

Something like the mod wheel connector needing fixing is bad enough and probably hurt the company pretty badly, but it was easily fixed and permanently avoided with comparatively little effort and cost, so while it probably made a dent in profits for last year, they likely easily absorbed it.

But can you imagine if they had had to destroy a thousand or two thousand logic boards over a hardware defect they didn’t catch in time?

It’s all about balancing the orders to get a decent price without risking too much capital.
Last edited by analogika on 11 Mar 2018, 15:31, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2

Postby jaapb » 11 Mar 2018, 18:26

Hi guys,
I am thinking to replace my NS2 for the NS3.

It's hard for me to read all the pages of this post, because of my bad english.
Can anyone tell me if the issue that is mentioned in this post is still unsolved?

I am reading things like 'that the NS3 sound more bright and thinner than on NS2?"
and in an other post I read "that NS3 behaves like NS2 with 'dynamic' setting to 2" (nord-stage-forum-f3/is-it-just-me-stage-2-sounds-better-than-stage-3-t14123-50.html)

Thanks for your help in advance!
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Re: NS3 Velocity and General Sound vs NS2

Postby analogika » 11 Mar 2018, 18:44

They sound different and play differently.

Some of us prefer the Stage 2; Clavia themselves (and many/most of users) seem to prefer the Stage 3.

This is not going to change.
Last edited by analogika on 11 Mar 2018, 18:47, edited 1 time in total.

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