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

Nord Lead 3 aftertouch issues

Postby Skwege101 » 13 Aug 2016, 08:40

Hi all,
Longtime lurker, first time poster. So my otherwise in perfect working order NL3 has started having some aftertouch issues on a few of the white keys. Velocity seems to work fine, but aftertouch has a tough time being triggered on about 3-4 keys while the black keys between them are fine. Now the higher up on the white keys I press, the easier it is to trigger the AT.
Any suggestions on what the problem may be and any potential solutions before I turn it over to a service center? Any tips on taking the keybed apart (which i've done with other units, just not a Nord.)

Thanks
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Nord Lead 3 aftertouch issues


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Re: Nord Lead 3 aftertouch issues

Postby nordlover84 » 18 Aug 2016, 23:57

Im a nord lead expert and the 3 is a unique monster.... they brought a different design team in to create it. I have a few tricks on fixing the aftertouch. Its doable by a novice too if your worried about getting into the electronics. Let me know if you still need help.
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Re: Nord Lead 3 aftertouch issues

Postby pablomastodon » 19 Aug 2016, 02:07

do tell...
bun fyah weh fyah fi bun
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Re: Nord Lead 3 aftertouch issues

Postby danielschenk » 29 Apr 2019, 16:14

Sorry to bump this old topic, but I think it's worth it. I just bought a 2nd hand NL3 which appears to have the exact same issue as the topic starter. When using the low end of the white keys, the aftertouch is very erratic, and I can't even get it near the maximum position. When pressing in the middle of the key, it's working fine (just like with the black keys).

The seller & me already opened it to have a quick look at the mechanism. It appears to be a single sensing strip used for both black and white keys. The position of it also explains why black keys are still fine, and middle of the white key too, because you're directly pressing on top of the sensing strip in that case. My first guesses:

- Sensing strip became less sensitive over time
- Spring loads at the top of the key wore out, causing reduced momentum/lever effect, therefore reduced amount of pressure when pressing the lower end of the key
- Foam layer between keys and sensing strip wore out, reducing pressure transfer (<-- idea to replace this? Or put some extra foam in between?)

nordlover84 wrote:Im a nord lead expert and the 3 is a unique monster.... they brought a different design team in to create it. I have a few tricks on fixing the aftertouch. Its doable by a novice too if your worried about getting into the electronics. Let me know if you still need help.


Do you know how to fix this? I really would appreciate your help. You can also DM me.
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Re: Nord Lead 3 aftertouch issues

Postby 23skidoo » 30 Apr 2019, 00:04

All very true. The only fix is to replace the strip, according to the synth guys at Analogix. Mine has the same issue.
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 Lead 3 aftertouch issues

Postby OmriAlvayero » 15 Nov 2020, 01:54

23skidoo wrote:All very true. The only fix is to replace the strip, according to the synth guys at Analogix. Mine has the same issue.


Hey, I know it's an old topic, but I have the same issue with the contact strip, and I have searched a replacement for it but with no luck.
Do you know where I can find aftertouch's contact strip for the NL3?
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Re: Nord Lead 3 aftertouch issues

Postby ricard » 20 Nov 2020, 07:54

I don't know how useful this is in an NL3 context, but I replaced the aftertouch strip in my aging Roland Alpha Juno 2 with a couple of Interlink 408 Force Sensitive Resistors, available from Adafruit among other places (https://www.adafruit.com/product/1071). I needed two because the length of the strip covers only about 3.5 octaves (and it's not available in larger lengths); they can be cut down to shorter lengths however. I don't know if it would work as a drop-in replacement, as I'd been fiddling with the aftertouch sensing circuit to compensate for the aging and hence less sensitive original strip before, adding a gain adjustment to the sensing amplifier.

(I subsequently found out that Roland do sell the aftertouch strip for their keyboards as spare parts; none available for the Alpha Juno 2, but they are available for newer ones, which may or may not work satisfactorily.)
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Re: Nord Lead 3 aftertouch issues

Postby 23skidoo » 20 Nov 2020, 16:41

OmriAlvayero wrote:Hey, I know it's an old topic, but I have the same issue with the contact strip, and I have searched a replacement for it but with no luck.
Do you know where I can find aftertouch's contact strip for the NL3?


Syntaur was selling used (!) variants of the strip (https://syntaur.com/Items.php?Item=4450) but given that these are items damaged by both age and wear, I took a pass on it when it was in stock (they harvest them from older keyboards they strip for parts). You can cut a 61-key strip down to size for the 49 key keybeds. I know of no new supplies for this part, and Fatar hasn't responded to my inquiries for parts either, nor the local Fatar distributor.

I lost a link to a DIY description of how to disassemble, clean the conductive graphite, and reassemble a similar type of strip, but each strip works on slightly different principles - I don't know for the NL3 strips if it's the rubber "foam" on top that's conductive (and thus variable in resistance) or if it's simply between the two layers of plastic that the force-resistive elements exist, but how this particular strip is assembled (and which particular resistance values it has) will be important to determining if it can be rebuilt or not.
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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