Carol Ann Amps - Thread XVII

eigentone

Gold Supporting Member
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8,023
It’s an interface that translates incoming MIDI commands from a controller to outbound switching voltage to the 3-prong amp interface.

Alan made a point in one of these megathreads of saying that it was his proprietary protocol and that he would not make it public.
Ah I see. In that case, simply figuring out what MIDI messages are being transmitting is not the difficult part. If it were that easy, I would have offered to monitor and document the MIDI if the hardware could be recreated and if it would be useful to people that wanted the footswitch. Interpreting MIDI messages to determine what message has which effect is typically straightforward.
 

eigentone

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
8,023
If anybody is curious what the MIDI messages of the MIDI-XLR interface are, I found this:
The Carol-Ann MIDI-XLR Interface is in stock right now!

With this box, you can connect a MIDI device to certain Carol-Ann Amps so you can control the amps foot controller functions, such as changing the channel, or switching the effects loop on and off.

The MI-01 supports all the 3 channel CA models that use the FC04 and FC05 electronic 3 pin foot controllers.

Operating Instructions:

The purpose of this interface to to allow MIDI Program Change messages to be received from an external MIDI device such as a MIDI foot controller in order to control the Channel Selection , Lead Mode and
Effects Loop Switching of any Carol-Ann Amplifier that normally uses an electronic foot controller. This includes the following models fitted with a 3 Pin XLR Foot Controller Connector: OD3r, OD3, Triptik, Trip-R, Tucana 3, Tucana 3r.

This interface WILL NOT work with any amp fitted with a 5 Pin XLR Foot Switch Connector, nor will it work with any model not listed above that is fitted with a 3 Pin XLR Socket as they use a different switching
method.

The interface can be thought of as MIDI device with 10 Preset Programs. Each preset represents an Amplifier Channel / Lead / Effects loop configuration. The list of all the presets and corresponding Program
Change Number is shown in it's own section below.

Setup
Connecting the unit in to your rig is very straightforward. A standard XLR cable is used to connect the MI-01 Interface to the Amplifiers Foot Controller Connector. A standard 5 Pin MIDI cable is used to connect the MI-01 interface to a MIDI MIDI Foot Controller or the MIDI THRU/OUT of an EFX Unit. In a typical setup that included a MIDI EFX Processor, the MIDI out from the Foot Controller would connect to the MIDI IN on the processor. Then the MIDI THRU or in some cases the MIDI OUT of the processor would
connect to the MIDI IN on the MI-01 interface. Ensure the EFX Unit is configure to receive on a different MIDI channel to the MI-01. No external power is needed for the MI-01 Interface, the amplifier provides power through the XLR cable. Turn on the power to the efx unit first, then turn on the power to the
amplifier.

Presets
The following is a list of all the Program Change Numbers and their preset function.
00 - Channel A / efx Loop Active
01 - Channel B / efx Loop Active
02 - Channel C / efx Loop Active
03 - Channel B / Lead Mode / efx Loop Active
04 - Channel C / Lead Mode / efx Loop Active
05 - Channel A / efx Loop Inactive*
06 - Channel B / efx Loop Inactive*
07 - Channel C / efx Loop Inactive*
08 - Channel B / Lead Mode / efx Loop Inactive*
09 - Channel C / Lead Mode / efx Loop Inactive*
* Effects Loop switching is only available on amplifiers that are fitted with a switchable loop. For all others the efx loop is always active regardless of the preset selected.

MIDI Implementation
The MI-01 operates on MIDI Channel 1 and isn't user configurable to any other channel. It is possible to get a firmware upgrade to operate on a user chosen channel. All modern MIDI Foot Controllers allow the simultaneous sending of different MIDI program change messages over more than one MIDI channel,
so the interface and a MIDI efx unit can receive different program Change messages from the same Switch/Patch on the foot controller. Please refer to your user manual for the efx processor / Foot Controller you are using for details of how to implement MIDI mapping. It's usually very simple.

Support
For product support of the Interface and any Carol-Ann Amplifiers please email alan@carolannamps.com
For support of any MIDI device connected to the interface, please contact the Manufacturer of the particular device.
 

eigentone

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
8,023
I was going to post a pic but I’m not sure how to do that here.

Yes, one 5 pin midi and one XLR. The instructions say it will only work with CA amps with the 3-prong controller connection. You send it one of 9 PC messages to select channels, Fx loop, boost and combinations.

Just noticed- I have the original Midi 1R-01 cable with it in the box. That‘s got to be a rarity!

Here are the things it can select:

Presets
The following is a list of all the Program Change Numbers and their preset function.

00 - Channel A / efx Loop Active
01 - Channel B / efx Loop Active
02 - Channel C / efx Loop Active
03 - Channel B / Lead Mode / efx
04 - Channel C / Lead Mode / efx
05 - Channel A / efx Loop Inactive*
06 - Channel B / efx Loop Inactive*
07 - Channel C / efx Loop Inactive*
08 - Channel B / Lead Mode / efx Loop Inactive* 09 - Channel C / Lead Mode / efx Loop Inactive*

* Effects Loop switching is only available on amplifiers that are fitted with a switchable loop. For all others the efx loop is always active regardless of the preset selected.
Ha! You edited your post while I posted the program change messages above ^^^
 

eigentone

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
8,023
Sorry about that. I realized it was in the pdf version that’s still on the CA web page!
No worries. I was just amused that we were both posting the MIDI message list at the same time.

It’s nice to have here in the event CA’s website is taken offline someday.
 

244300

Let’s meet up to play some rock music in Phoenix!
Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,576
No worries. I was just amused that we were both posting the MIDI message list at the same time.

It’s nice to have here in the event CA’s website is taken offline someday.
Fixed it for you…

It’s nice to have here when for CA’s website registration expires.

…obviously I hope not and it would be good to get a decent database going for the future.
 

eigentone

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
8,023
Fixed it for you…

It’s nice to have here when for CA’s website registration expires.

…obviously I hope not and it would be good to get a decent database going for the future.
Yeah. I know you have several amps which Alan tweaked at the customer's request. A user populated "registry" could also be cool so that people could enter their CA amp, serial, specs, alterations from the base model, photos, etc.

They have something similar for Rickenbacker guitars and basses at Rick Resource:


Alright I am going to go drool over some 4005XC basses now. :drool
 

244300

Let’s meet up to play some rock music in Phoenix!
Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,576
Yeah. I know you have several amps which Alan tweaked at the customer's request. A user populated "registry" could also be cool so that people could enter their CA amp, serial, specs, alterations from the base model, photos, etc.

They have something similar for Rickenbacker guitars and basses at Rick Resource:
I‘d totally contribute to an effort like the Rick Resource.
 

Miroslav L

Member
Messages
2,003
It’s nice to have here in the event CA’s website is taken offline someday.
It's actually kinda surprising that the CA website is still up.
There was a point after the CA biz shut down, where Alan was saying it was too costly to keep up the website, he was paying a lot per month...some suggestions were made for less expensive hosting options, and I think at one point there was a transition...I recall the CA site was down for a couple of days...and then back up.

I'm not sure how long it will continue to stay up. I like to think that with the site up, there is still some possibility for a CA future, and that Alan is keeping that connection open...but then, all the contact info on the website is dead...so there is no real connection, and he's gone completely off-radar.
 

rpark

Member
Messages
17
I read through some of the discussion on pricing of CA amps, from the reasonable to the bizarrely high. Were I to sell my Tucana 3 head with the accessories (5-button controller, MIDI-01, Tuki Cover, spare Winged C KT88 tube set), what do you guys feel is a fair price these days? I obviously would want to come out as well as I can, without ripping off the buyer in the process. I’ve got to downsize at some point, though, so I’m seriously considering it. I’ve never had a group of knowledgeable CA folks to ask!
 

Jonathan

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
4,110
I read through some of the discussion on pricing of CA amps, from the reasonable to the bizarrely high. Were I to sell my Tucana 3 head with the accessories (5-button controller, MIDI-01, Tuki Cover, spare Winged C KT88 tube set), what do you guys feel is a fair price these days? I obviously would want to come out as well as I can, without ripping off the buyer in the process. I’ve got to downsize at some point, though, so I’m seriously considering it. I’ve never had a group of knowledgeable CA folks to ask!
Woah woah woah.....nobody's going to want that MIDI interface with the amp unless they use controllers. You should sell it separately - to me. lol
 

244300

Let’s meet up to play some rock music in Phoenix!
Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,576
I read through some of the discussion on pricing of CA amps, from the reasonable to the bizarrely high. Were I to sell my Tucana 3 head with the accessories (5-button controller, MIDI-01, Tuki Cover, spare Winged C KT88 tube set), what do you guys feel is a fair price these days? I obviously would want to come out as well as I can, without ripping off the buyer in the process. I’ve got to downsize at some point, though, so I’m seriously considering it. I’ve never had a group of knowledgeable CA folks to ask!
Sell the MIDI controller separately.

Look up Dutch auctions unless you are in a hurry. I tend to start on the high side and then correct over time.

Wattage is mostly irrelevant for CA heads. You’re definitely north of $2000 these days.
 

rpark

Member
Messages
17
Sell the MIDI controller separately.

Look up Dutch auctions unless you are in a hurry. I tend to start on the high side and then correct over time.

Wattage is mostly irrelevant for CA heads. You’re definitely north of $2000 these days.
I’ll likely do that. With shipping and tax, I paid over $2K for it so I’ll probably put a upper end price on the amp and see what happens. It isn’t costing me anything to have it in the music room, and I wouldn’t be heartbroken to keep it!

I‘ll let you guys know first if I sell the Midi-01. That seems more useful to folks here. Thanks!
 

Jonathan

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
4,110
Anybody else catch the Pete Thorn video? Dang….this does not help my Raw 35 lust. All the attributes that I think of when “Trainwreck” is mentioned; all the bloom, grit, chime and sparkle! I think some of the best tones I’ve heard from Pete.

 

Miroslav L

Member
Messages
2,003
Anybody else catch the Pete Thorn video? Dang….this does not help my Raw 35 lust. All the attributes that I think of when “Trainwreck” is mentioned; all the bloom, grit, chime and sparkle! I think some of the best tones I’ve heard from Pete.

But...but...there is more than one kind of TW amp model....so I don't see that there is a singular TW tone for all of them.
The Liverpool is an EL84 based amp.
The Express is an EL34 based amp...which evolved out of mods on a Marshal Super Lead...and is the one the Raw 35 was based on.
There's also a TW Rocket...which I believe is a AC30 flavor amp, also EL84.

Here's both Liverpool and Express demos.

 

Jonathan

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
4,110
But...but...there is more than one kind of TW amp model....so I don't see that there is a singular TW tone for all of them.
The Liverpool is an EL84 based amp.
The Express is an EL34 based amp...which evolved out of mods on a Marshal Super Lead...and is the one the Raw 35 was based on.
There's also a TW Rocket...which I believe is a AC30 flavor amp, also EL84.

Here's both Liverpool and Express demos.

Yes! One thing I've noticed with every TW demo is a characteristic chime and bloom though - with the ability to clean up so well off pick dynamics and volume.

I'm not honestly sure which one I would pick from that group - probably the Express, but I really liked them all.
 

Adman103

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
450
Anybody else catch the Pete Thorn video? Dang….this does not help my Raw 35 lust. All the attributes that I think of when “Trainwreck” is mentioned; all the bloom, grit, chime and sparkle! I think some of the best tones I’ve heard from Pete.

Yea, that TW sounds great. I remember reading that part of that TW thing is a somewhat mismatched OT- it causes the amp to breakup earlier in that really raw kind of way that’s extremely responsive to pick attack. I wonder if the raw is set up similarly.
 






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