Ensoniq Mirage questions and general chit-chat

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¼ dead
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Ensoniq Mirage questions and general chit-chat

Post by ¼ dead » Fri Sep 28, 2018 8:57 pm

I've had the rack mount version for years, as mi madre got it at a shockingly-low price as a gift for me. Only within the last two months, after having it for ~7+ years, have I finally bought some generic (read: bootleg) OS/formatting disks for it, and was very happy to find that it works.

It's a beautiful thing, even though I have a hard time comprehending a lot of the "deeper" functions. I stumbled into a setting that seems to make the Mirage rhythmically cycle across the upper and lower samples, playing chunks of each at varying pitches. It sounds great, even though it is only a pattern, which repeats a cycle of cacophonous glitches for every keypress.

I have no idea what's happening beyond describing the effect, but it's a very consistent thing, in that I can get into this mode every time with the same programming steps (I can't type them up from memory, as the Mirage has been unplugged and out of use for a while, since my gear is all in the glacially-paced process of being rearranged, and I am drunkish, and can't explain the steps, even with my parameter cheat sheet handy. But it's, very cut and dry; It's just a matter of maxing out 2-3 of the Mirage's parameters).

Any thoughts on exactly what is happening when I program it to do this? As I said, I don't grok the more "complex" aspects of programming the thing, even with the aid of a parameter/function cheat sheet. What I've read suggests that there's some potential for creating an evolving sound by having upper/lower samples phase into one another, but what I've managed to create is little more than (interesting) glitching, and sounds nothing like what I'd expect, and I have to confess I don't know what's happening on a theoretical level at all when it comes to making it do things like this:
https://vocaroo.com/i/s12nZxSRmmcx
(The recording is of a sustained three-finger chord being transmitted via MIDI to the Mirage. The "dry" samples here were fairly unremarkable, from what I remember.... I think it's one or two string plucks. Nothing at all complex in terms of action).

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WhiteWarlock
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Re: Ensoniq Mirage questions and general chit-chat

Post by WhiteWarlock » Sat Sep 29, 2018 8:34 am

that demo sounds like the effect you get from LFO modulating sample read/start positions in loops
aka my term for such type of sampling glitch:KAOS
the pattern you hear in it is LFO waveform shape
BTW have some old mirage format samples archived
yet if you are having problems with comprehending the mirage's "deep old ones" parameters
getting mirage formatted samples on working floppy from files via computer using the Ensoniq method with SD/DD floppies
will drive your more insane than realizing you are actually genetically related
to the creepy eyed non blinking Marsh family of Innsmouth
It could cause you to start "drinking like a fish".

you probably want researching floppy drive emulators w/usb for your own sanity:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/3-5-1000-Flopp ... SwgsVbftpF
R&D compatibility with your Ensoniq
there are large amounts of them for sale on ebay anymore... cheap
(they used to be 10x that amount)

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¼ dead
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Re: Ensoniq Mirage questions and general chit-chat

Post by ¼ dead » Mon Oct 01, 2018 11:33 am

That explanation makes a lot of sense if I understand it correctly, though I didn't even realize the Mirage could do this. Thanks. I need to reference the manual PDF and see if I can figure this out based on the description you gave.

As for samples, I can't be bothered with prefab shit. The little bit I've read about transmitting sample data via MIDI alone sounds like a monstrous hassle (that's assuming it's even possible, and my reading comprehension isn't totally non-existent). I am not opposed to using disks pre-loaded, but I can't be fucked with anything more complicated that that, or sampling direct into the input. As such, everything I've done with it so far (test samples aside: "This is a blank formatted diskette") is all "original" samples.

I don't mind using the floppy drive at all. Not enough to want to deal with the hassle of trying to install an emulator, anyway. My only concern is not if, but when, the drive fails, or the floppies somehow become unreadable.

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WhiteWarlock
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Re: Ensoniq Mirage questions and general chit-chat

Post by WhiteWarlock » Mon Oct 01, 2018 11:52 am



http://mondfeuerwerk.de/Mirage/Ensoniq_ ... Manual.pdf
http://patcharena.com/tag/ensoniq-mirag ... ce-manual/
http://patcharena.com/downloads/comment.php?dlid=1097
hear ya
dig through the Mirage manual
speaking from Ensoniq EPS16/ASR10 fanatics perspective

Eye frequently use ancient Ensoniq factory library strings sample from the Mirage on my ASR10
you super scored grabbing that old DSM1 IMO
it's all about your creativity even more so with old samplers
had the Mirage keyboard in the early 90s
prefer my Korg DSS1 battleship for oldschool 12bit hybrid digital sampler/analog synth signal flow with dual delays
yet always sort of wanted DSM1 rack

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WhiteWarlock
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Re: Ensoniq Mirage questions and general chit-chat

Post by WhiteWarlock » Mon Oct 01, 2018 1:20 pm


This is what could be happening with your Mirage^

Ensoniq samplers are known for somewhat odd behavior when the loop start and end points are brought too close together. The sample read pointer will somehow "miss" the end point and read through other parts of the sample memory. The instrument parameters are stored here too. With no instruments loaded, I created a new instrument and waveform (it creates a sort of square wave by default). I copied instances of this sample, copied layers, copied instruments, etc. with different parameters for each. To save memory, it just references the original waveform data without making a new copy. The sample memory now contains lots of parameter data, but (almost) no actual waveforms. Using the loop point trick, I played through this data and modified it in various ways.

didn't see LFO mod for loop start position in the manual....
yet was fast peak
personally have habit of exploiting that Ensoniq qlitch at times
experiment with it!

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