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Did I Mention The Keyboard Thing?

January 20th, 2016 · No Comments

A few months ago I dug my old Yamaha V-50 digital synth out of the closet to see if it could still pump out the 80s hits. Turns out what has always been “my old keyboard” taking up space in the closet is now a “vintage FM synth” that is moderately collectable. But mine didn’t work. Something had gone wonky on the small LCD display, and the floppy disk with all my saved music from back in the day wasn’t reading.

I did some research and discovered that my V-50 suffered from two common ailments: one, the battery on the motherboard was dead, and two, the rubber band belt on the disk drive had most likely decomposed. After taking the whole thing apart and using a soldering iron to replace a battery on the motherboard as well as replacing the belt on the disk drive (after scraping the old one off the spindle with a knife), I finally got it up and running just like it did in 1989. Since then I’ve been practicing (and buying more vintage 80s keyboards). So far, the results are not unlike Jon Benjamin’s work on his first jazz piano album.

Watch the clip and you’ll see what I mean. Or listen to his interview on All Things Considered.

Tags: Music · Video

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