NRPN messages with slower synths

I’ve got an Ensoniq SQ-80 and I’m attempting to make a preset for it. It responds to NRPN messages for the parameters, and while setting up faders or lists do work the synth steps through every single adjustment extremely slow. Often times the synth will freeze up and will reboot. Once a parameter is selected though sending CC#6 alone is fast and causes no problems.

Is there a workaround for this situation? A way to send the initial MSB and LSB once when selecting a control, and then send only the values while adjusting?

When monitoring IN (of both the SQ-80 and E1) does the order of CC’s match (CC 6 & CC38)? Maybe the SQ-80 has trouble with MSB first or LSB first? Have you tried switching it?

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I have the control set for LSB first. There’s no response when sending MSB first.

Update: When monitoring the SQ-80 front panel controls and selecting a parameter to edit I receive a NRPN of 98 (LSB) and 99 (MSB) only. When adjusting the data slider a data entry of CC#6 is sent, and CC#38 is never used.

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The 98 and 99 part are correct, but only 6 and no 38 is bit odd. The Electra One also sends 100 and 101 (if memory serves me right) are a bit superfluous, but should not hurt. @martin any ideas?

I think I have seen the pattern you describe before on the Behringer BCR2000.

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The 100/101 are sent to reset the current active NRPN parameter. That way each NRPN “message” leaves the synth in a consitent state. It is quite a standard way of doing that. I can imagine it could make troubles on some older synths.

I am currently occupied with preparing stuff for the Superbooth but I will add this on my TODO list. I mean, make this reset optional.

@Feinsveur it would be great if you could try to send (say from some application) a NRPN message with and without the 100/101 to see, if it is the reason why SQ80 freezes.

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I’ll look into an application that can send that NRPN and see what happens.

While doing some research on the web I found some threads that talk about this particular issue with the Ensoniq ESQ-1 and SQ-80. Apparently the Z80 processor in the synths can’t handle high traffic of NRPN messages. They only expect the single 98/99 message for parameter selection followed by a regular CC6 for the value, which is all that is sent while monitoring the synths’s value slider.