in 2005, the 200e series Electric Music Box brought several innovations to the world of modular synthesizers.
Amongst these advances is the 225e MIDI interface, which allows a direct communication between your MIDI controllers and the 200e system. Now your Thunder, Lightning, Marimba Lumina, Piano Bar, or what-have-you can directly control the 200e's incredible sound palette.
Another notable advance is the ability to store and recall presets. Push the store button, name the preset, and your knob and switch settings are forever stored. Note that patch cord interconnections are not stored - we'll let you know when we figure that one out.
Other improvements include internal MIDI buses, invisible supplies, more voltage controlled parameters, the addition of a signal and control voltage router, the merging of a swirler with the system interface, the addition of velocity to the dynamics manager, and a reworking of the complex oscillator's output section.
Functionally new modules include an arbitrary function generator, a triple morphing filter, a tactile input port with arpeggiation, a pitch shifter / balanced modulator, and the latest concoctions, a 16 channel spectral processor, a quad 50 stage sequencer, and a quad voltage-controlled polyphonic F.M. tuner.
THE LATEST CHANGES
The 200e relies on new editions of "firmware" to add new capabilities to the modules. This firmware is stored on little memory cards, which have to be returned to the factory when an update is in order.
Now we have a better way. Firmware is downloaded from our website to a USB Memory card, and loaded into the system via the system memory slot. No more mail hassles and delays - practically instant downloads - but you'll need a MacIntosh computer to accomplish this.
Now for the kicker - we have new versions of firmware for all of the 200e modules. The catch is that a system must have all its modules running on either version xx firmware (xx is from 01 to 29), or on the new version 3x firmware. A mix of firmware versions in a system will not function. All new systems are shipped with version 3x firmware, and all old systems can be readily updated.
The pluses are that version 3x firmware is more stable - code loaders are locked, I/O transactions timed precisely, and bus collisions are eliminated. (Sorry for the computer jargon - the 3x firmware simply makes for a better system.)
Now for the fly in the ointment. To update the preset managers (206e and 225e), we need to change the CPU's. New versions of these computers (faster, with 4 times the memory) were recently introduced, and we need to use these computers to provide the new capabilities.
Now that's not too nasty a fly. And it comes with a perk - let us upgrade your 206e or 225e and your system will not only run faster; it will acquire a new capability - that of using the entire system as a voltage-controlled sequencer.
Select some modules, button them up in a 200e cabinet, and you're off and running with the most sophisticated analog system ever built.