Lexicon PCM80 & PCM81 Questions, Tips, Tricks & Solutions

Discussion in 'The Rack Space' started by AnalogKid85, Mar 6, 2016.

  1. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    Yep. UI isn't a piece of cake but I learned that when something sounds good to me... nothing stops me. UI... I don't care.
     
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  2. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    LIVING with OLD GEAR!

    What a day!
    My PCM80 developed a "watery" display... the blue seemed like a stream of water was going thru it.
    My PCM81 ADJUST encoder went nuts in the last weeks. It would only go to a parameter max. value and stay there, locked.
    My Eclipse... did the same as the PCM81... can you believe that?
    One of my TC2290s internal battery died.

    WTF!!! Right?

    Disassembled the PCM80 front panel (lots of work there) and changed the 2 capacitors on it. Luca from Shiva Audio Devices has been an angel on this. Display came back to life. Also BIG THANKS to Steve Lenham
    from Benden Audio Technology UK for giving the right solution to the issue.
    Dissassembled the PCM81, removed the encoders board and sprayed good contact cleaner in the Adjust knob. Works fine now.
    Last weekend... huge PITA disassembling the Eclipse front panel. Sprayed some contact cleaner but the encoder is raeally closed. I don't know what I did... it was probably the whole disassembling and disconnecting/reconnecting molex things around... the Eclipse is now working fine.
    Desoldering the old battery from the TC2290 and soldering a new one in... easy. Works like new now.

    These things need some love, from time to time. Love them a lot. Nothing sounds like them out there.... NOTHING!
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2016
  3. cbm

    cbm Silver Supporting Member

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    Hopefully, the dues are paid up for a while now.
     
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  4. DieHon

    DieHon Member

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    Not even an h8000?
     
  5. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

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    Of course Italo has an H8000, it just didn't decide to break on him last week like the other stuff did.

    You know, I've got my Vortex in the guitar only rack, running in mono. I'm thinking that might be a better use of the one slot still free in the mixer based rack...
     
  6. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    NOOOO! My 2 H8000s are fine. The Orville... that's another story. Need to send it back as it clearly wants some love from his mom in New Jersey...
    Major PITA!!!
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2017
  7. DieHon

    DieHon Member

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    Sorry, I wasn't clear enough. I meant to compare the effects quality of the PCM81 and Eclipse with the h8000. The h8000 has some lexicon emulations. I though it was close enough.
     
  8. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    The DSP/ORville/H series have a number of Lexicon emulations I added to the factory presets, mostly from the PCM70. The H-series has some Lexicon PCM80 and 300 stuff too.
    Nevertheless each unit has its sound, owing to hardware and software... so having both the Hs and PCMs is a pleasure of variety.
    Quality in the units you mentioned is stellar, no doubt about it.
     
  9. DieHon

    DieHon Member

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    Sometimes I think about selling my PCM81 and Eclipse to get an h8000. However, I'm afraid to miss the lexicon.
     
  10. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    Well...
    with an H8000 you'll be in heaven for pretty much everything. It will include anything the Eclipse does and severalother things from the PCM. Consider that the money you would get by selling the PCM isn't really much, so you may keep the 81, sell the Eclipse and get the H8000... and live in Nirvana.
     
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  11. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    What exactly you think you may miss from the PCM81?
     
  12. DieHon

    DieHon Member

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    The Pcm81 is really expensive where I live!

    I would miss its reverbs (even Eclipse's ones can't come close) and the room 147 (I don't remember the exact number) rotary preset!
     
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  13. uraniumwilly

    uraniumwilly Member

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    Thanks for posting this. I have 5 Lex rack units. The MPX-1 has begun to be very noisy when adjusting the input pot. Is it standard practice to use contact cleaner with such a problem? My old Lex Jamman is doing same.

    Edit to add: I'm afraid to fire up my Vortex since it might be time for it to be noisy too.
     
  14. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    The H8000 will give you exceptional reverbs AND a couple of really good LESLIE presets too.
    Check the PLEXDIFFVERB (and other reverbs) here:
    http://www.italodeangelis.com/it/ev...entide_ORVILLE_DSP7500_DSP7000.asp#audioclips

    and many others here:
    http://www.italodeangelis.com/it/eventide_and_other_stuff/eventide_H8000FW.asp#audioclips2

    There are a lot of spaces you can hear and judge for yourself.


    EDIT: please download the high resolution audio files rather than listening to the streaming MP3s. You owe it to yourself. Listen to the good stuff thru some quality equipment.o_O

    EDIT#2: listen to the Himalayan reverbs at the second link, those with (Hmly) after their names...
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2016
  15. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    You shouldn't be afraid of using good contact cleaner in your units' audio pots. Go ahead. Spray and rotate the pots for a couple of minutes. Dry any left cleaner with a cloth.
     
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  16. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

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    Italo, I looked at the manual for the Vortex again today, it doesn't look like it's a single algorithm with just different options? Some of the algorithms drawn out have the feedback in different places, and the effects blocks working differently. I want to be educated...
     
  17. Squatch57

    Squatch57 Member

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    Same for me, especially finding a 240V version (I hate using stepdown transformers even though I have a few big ones)
    I got a deal on a Big Sky for $400 ($320US), so I can semi get my rocks off...it's a cute box
     
  18. PurpleJesus

    PurpleJesus Moderation is key Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Completely agree on the reverbs and rotary sim. It's the best Leslie I've ever heard from an effect. I think it's "Round 146"
     
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  19. cutlunch

    cutlunch Supporting Member

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    Vortex V2 in a RP300 case?
     
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  20. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    There are many units out there that "give the illusion" to the user he is using a set of different algorithms, loading one or the other, on which his presets are based.
    Actually they only use one single large algorithm and a set of math and control math parts in it (matrix, control tables and what not) that are used to switch and re_route parts of the effects and their audio signals.
    So you can have anything being changed to anything else. Not a big thing. Most of these products are guitar "oriented"... and sound BAD or at least some of their effects are just poor. The reason for them to be is the average low-end tech guitarist mentality which calls for "instant" preset switching (vs. using MIDI CCs). One single algorithm that can be reconfigured at preset switching IS fast... and sucks!
    Say you have 12 effects in this large hidden structure and say YOUR preset is using 5 of them. The huge limitation is that all those 15 effects are still alive (and hidden) as far as DSP calculation... thus the quality if the single effect is very limited by this approach. I always present the analogy to a cake. That is your available DSP power. If you cut the cake in 15 slices, you will always and only get 1/15th of it in your slice.
    If you were able to cut your own slice... maybe you'd get a 4th of the whole thing. One structure vs. decompliling/compiling a specific structure taking ALL the power or almost... to run your next preset, with much higher audio quality. Capisci?
    Now, aside from this example, the Vortex is NOT the typical guitarist effect... actually most guitarists didn't understand the unit at all, thinking they were buying a multi effects. Vortex doesn't offer many different effects in terms of type and at the same time. You can't jump from a reverb to a pitch shifter or to a stereo modulated delay to a chorus. Its array of effects is very particular and based off a few ideas that can be "morphed" into other things, using a common set of effects. With 10 MHz of power... let me say...that's impressively NO power at all, you got all those effects variations based on delays/filters/haas/panning/modulation/tremolo/etc... it's a very smart choice of effects and a super clever idea about the "morphing".
    If the machine had a decent processor, a real display, MIDI and a beefier delay memory, like 20 seconds for each delay line, it would have been a milestone to build a new concept in fx-processing... even influencing how music is conceived... for those who are open to this kind of interactivity. The PCM series could have been an alternative as a memory expanded PCM80 reaches almost 44 seconds on every delay line (6!!!) and its Motorola chip, dedicated to effects (not reverb - there's a Lexichip2 for that) runs at 80 something MHz. Imagine a card for the PCM80... called "Morphs", taking from where the Vortex had left and implementing those effects AND new ones, using the PCM power and architecture (MIDI and internal modulators are a very creative way to make your effects come alive). Gee.... I can't imagine the success of it WITH some WELL CONCEIVED marketing strategy. When the Jamman came out (what an HORRIBLE man btw), Lexicon marketing came up with a guy showing the product playing some riffs on top of the other, loop them and solo on it. Really? In that day and age... they couldn't understand the LOOPING artform (should I type a LONG list of artsist who have made looping an art, not a practice tool) int its full scope and powers. An artform using pre-processing > looping > post-processing of the loops. They couldn't put together a demo with the Vortex morphs being looped on a couple of Jamman in stereo and a PCM80 post processing the loop!!! At the time they had the PERFECT MAN for showing the world what kind of beauty these tools together can deliver, but didn't get it or didn't WANT to.
     

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