What upgrades to STfm and which MIDI sequencers to try

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PlasticParty
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What upgrades to STfm and which MIDI sequencers to try

Post by PlasticParty » Sun Jul 12, 2020 1:37 pm

Hi there,

New ST user here. IVe got a 520STfm.

My question is: what recommended hardware upgrades should I do and can you recommend parts from this site?

Also, what MIDI sequencers should I try out?

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JezC
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Re: What upgrades to STfm and which MIDI sequencers to try

Post by JezC » Sun Jul 12, 2020 1:54 pm

:welcomewave:

Welcome on board!

Not many of the more powerful sequencers will work with only half a meg of memory (I think some of the later versions even recommend a minimum of 2M), so that is one upgrade that will probably make sense.

It's also best to use the high resolution mode for serious work - pretty much any VGA monitor will work with an adaptor (Exxos does one for £8 + P&P IIRC) to show ST high res but a small number will also show lo & medium res for other purposes, depending on your needs.

The image quality of the ST hi res mode on some VGA screens is not up to the original SM124/125 or similar so if it's for prolonged use I'd see if you can see the monitor in action before buying it.

As for the sequencers, I've been using Creator & Notator since the late 80s & also use Cubase (mostly v3 more recently) but there are plenty of others you can try if you don't get on with either of those heavyweights. I tried Pro 24 but it wasn't quite my cup of tea.

For example, there is a free version of Cubase (Cubase Lite) which lacks some of the features but would allow you to see if you like workflow.

Good luck with the adventure & I hope you will keep up posted with your progress & decisions!

PlasticParty
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Re: What upgrades to STfm and which MIDI sequencers to try

Post by PlasticParty » Wed Jul 15, 2020 12:29 am

JezC wrote:
Sun Jul 12, 2020 1:54 pm
:welcomewave:

Welcome on board!

Not many of the more powerful sequencers will work with only half a meg of memory (I think some of the later versions even recommend a minimum of 2M), so that is one upgrade that will probably make sense.

It's also best to use the high resolution mode for serious work - pretty much any VGA monitor will work with an adaptor (Exxos does one for £8 + P&P IIRC) to show ST high res but a small number will also show lo & medium res for other purposes, depending on your needs.

The image quality of the ST hi res mode on some VGA screens is not up to the original SM124/125 or similar so if it's for prolonged use I'd see if you can see the monitor in action before buying it.

As for the sequencers, I've been using Creator & Notator since the late 80s & also use Cubase (mostly v3 more recently) but there are plenty of others you can try if you don't get on with either of those heavyweights. I tried Pro 24 but it wasn't quite my cup of tea.

For example, there is a free version of Cubase (Cubase Lite) which lacks some of the features but would allow you to see if you like workflow.

Good luck with the adventure & I hope you will keep up posted with your progress & decisions!
Thank you for taking the time to reply, its greatly appreciated.

The ST came with a VGA adapter so I have been able to briefly test it. The picture quality is surprisingly clear in Hi-Res mode.

What I have in mind is:

-4MB upgrade (I will need to see what mobo I have, ive got a feeling its a later model)
-IDE interface with CF card
-Update to TOS 2.06

I see there is a thing called a Lightning ST and Cloudy. I tried emailing the guy about it but the email address didn't work...

Can you suggest what I should buy from this site? Ive got a Gotek & USB programmer on order from China but I would actually like to keep the floppy drive installed. Its just an option though.

PlasticParty
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Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2020 1:29 pm

Re: What upgrades to STfm and which MIDI sequencers to try

Post by PlasticParty » Wed Jul 15, 2020 12:31 am

What is your thoughts on Master Tracks Pro?

I will be sequencing drum machines, samplers and synths. In the style of Techno/house.

Tomswork
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Re: What upgrades to STfm and which MIDI sequencers to try

Post by Tomswork » Wed Jul 15, 2020 2:26 am

:welcomewave:

Tom

czietz
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Re: What upgrades to STfm and which MIDI sequencers to try

Post by czietz » Wed Jul 15, 2020 6:29 am

PlasticParty wrote:
Wed Jul 15, 2020 12:29 am
I see there is a thing called a Lightning ST and Cloudy. I tried emailing the guy about it but the email address didn't work...
What did you mean by "didn't work"? Did you get a bounce / error message? Or didn't you just get a reply, yet? In any case, I'm one of the developers of the Lightning ST and Cloudy and I'm sorry about your bad experience. Feel free to PM me your email address (either here or on Atari-Forum.com) and I'll make sure that the person handling orders gets in contact with you.

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rubber_jonnie
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Re: What upgrades to STfm and which MIDI sequencers to try

Post by rubber_jonnie » Wed Jul 15, 2020 9:30 am

In terms of the upgrades you've mentioned, have you tried clicking on the Shop link at the top of the page?

exxos has pretty much all the HW you're looking for there, and the IDE interface does include a dual TOS ROM facility so you can switch between say 1.04 and 2.06.

Of course you may have other specifics, so always worth looking around at other solutions like Lightning and Cloudy.
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