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JoMox XBase 999 Analog Drum Synthesizer

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Description
The XBASE 999 is a drum machine with 9 instruments. 4 of them are completely made up of advanced analog discrete circuitries and combine true analog sound with the advantage of full digital control of all parameters. The other 5 instruments are based on short 8 bit samples which are processed by an analog VCA envelope. They are of course also controllable in the digital domain. Thus they can be stored in memory and be remotely controlled by Midi.

In order to affect the analog sound production as little as possible, all D/A converters are specially adapted to the parameters and being integrated into the circuitry. By doing so, the parameter control is provided for each trigger almost without any delay – which makes the necessary technical efforts in the XBASE 999 quite big.

Additionally, the XBASE 999 has a great sounding stereo filter that allows for independent control of cutoff, Q and resonance. It is also controllable by Midi CC and can be sequenced by the internal sequencer with every of its parameters.

By using encoders instead of potentiometers annoying jumps of parameters belong to the past. Basically the editing of all instrument parameters is possible by the 16 encoders or by using the left / right cursor buttons and the data wheel.

The heart of a drum machine is of course the sequencer. The XBASE 999 has a classic step sequencer with step LEDs which also lets you edit various quantizers for each track and step with midi clock sync and shuffle mode options.

Furthermore, 4 additional programmable MIDI tracks can trigger external instruments. In Pattern Mode, the XBASE 999 can control all the sound settings for each step to obtain melodies and really freaky grooves. So, for instance, you can “abuse” the kick drum with long decay for creating a bass line due to it’s extremely flexible sound programming.

On the sample based instruments each step can trigger a different sample if you want to. Each sample based instrument contains 31 different samples. With XBASE 999 it is possible now to reload them into the internal flash memory by midi sample dump. A PC/MAC tool for a convenient download can be downloaded at www.jomox.com.

Features

9 Instruments

Bass Drum, Snare Drum, Lo Tom, Hi Tom, Hi Hat, Clap, Rim, Crash and Ride. All instruments are polyphonically playable and have individual outs. From HH section onwards it's short 8-bit samples played back with an analog envelope as on the AirBase99. The sample flash ROM is bigger than ever: per instrument there are 31(!) samples.

Real analog sound production on BD, SD, LT and HT with digital control, means storeability and midi-controlability of all parameters. To make the disturbance of analog circuitry as small as possible, all D/A converters are specially adapted to the circuits and being integrated - with proven XBase/AirBase technology.

16 knobs

Sound editing is done by endless rotary encoders for every analog parameter which lets you edit the sounds without any jumps or awkward turning jobs.
Close to each knob there is a 3-color LED indicating which parameters for the selected instrument are editable.

Improved kick drum

The most famous sound of the XBase09 is actually the kick drum. We have even put a parameter on top and provided the most wicked bass drum in the world with a compression value that lets you decide between a 909-style ultra compressed envelope or an 808-ish exponential curve (hint: MBase01).

Analog tom toms

For the beat freak there is also some extremely good sounding and widely editable analog tom toms included - as with the AirBase99.

Internal step sequencer

As usual, the XBASE 999 has the genious step sequencer build in already. There are some improvements now: all patterns are A/B patterns, and it's your choice if it's 2 alternating 16 step patterns ore one 32 step pattern. The sequencer is made up by 3-color LEDs to indicate the individual step edit modes known from the XBase09 even better and more intuitive.

The micro shuffle can now be edited for each instrument individually.

Bank select has now an own switch. 4 banks with each 16 A/B patterns are made available, which results in 128 actual 16 step patterns.

Analog step sequencer with X-filter

As an additional feature, the XBASE 999 has also an inbuild 16 step analog sequencer for the included external filter.
Each of the 16 rotary knobs has a click function to activate an analog step which controls the X-filter cutoff.
The filter is a stereo 2-pole multimode filter with an interdependent resonance and Q-control which sounds great for external audio signals and that can be used as a signal source in resonant modes, too. If resonance is low, Q control can make it narrow but never starts to oscillate. Only when resonance is then applied, the filter starts to whistle, and the bandwith can still be controlled (within certain borders) through Q.

Filter Modes

Each of the 2 filters can be individually arranged as lowpass, highpass, bandpass and notch. Plus, the 2 filters can be programmed as stereo, in parallel or in series or with cross feedback.

Each instrument and the external input can be individually routed into the filter or being spared out. The stereo filter signal is mixed into the stereo bus with a VCA or can be purely led out via the ring of the stereo output jack. The LFOs can also control the filter to make it a real internal FX section. All this runs along with the beat sequencer...

Analog input

A stereo signal can be inserted and sliced by a VCA with an own envelope over the step sequencer. Or an external effects being inserted into main mix. Or just being filtered by the X-filter over the analog sequencer.

Stereo mix with pan control

all instruments except for kick drum can be panned in the stereo bus. If a plug is inserted to an individual input, the signal is spared out of the stereo bus.

External midi tracks

There are 4 additional Midi tracks to control external devices. The encoder knobs program the 12 halftones and octaves.

2 LFOs

Of course the XBASE 999 has again two phat LFOs that can be beat syncronized or run freely and can be routed to any destination.

Hi Hat Filter

The Hi Hat section contains a great sounding analog band pass filter with independend lowpass, highpass and resonance controls. Other than the 8-bit HH samples, analog noise can be the sound source as well.

2x24 Character LCD display

For a more convenient and clear operation the XBASE 999 has now a big alphanumerical LCD display. Kits can be named and the analog step sequencer has a bar display.

Flash sound ROM

The sound flash memory in the percussion section (HH, Clap, Rim, Crash, Ride) which contains 31 samples per instrument can be overwritten by the user via midi sample dump in order to create own samples.

Sample Editor

We provide a small tool that converts your *.wav samples into the right formatted XBASE999 structure and lets you dump your own created short samples into the XBASE999.

19" Rack mounting angles

are available as accessories, and you can find them in the Jomox webshop.
Images

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Specifications
Type: Analog, Digital
Sound Engine: ROM, Subtractive
Pattern Engine
Programming: Real Time, Step
Pattern Notes:
+ A/B pattern toggle
+ 2 x 16 or 32 step patterns
+ 16 step X-filter sequencer
Songs
+ 4 banks
+ 32 16-step patterns bank
Sounds Per Pad
Sounds Per Pad: 1
Sources: Samples, Synthesizer
Sounds Notes:
+ 9 Instruments - Bass Drum, Snare Drum, Lo Tom, Hi Tom, Hi Hat, Clap, Rim, Crash and Ride.
+ 4 x analog sounds - Bass Drum, Snare Drum, Lo Tom, Hi Tom
+ 5 x 8-bit samples - Hi Hat, Clap, Rim, Crash, Ride
+ 31 8-bit samples per instrument
Filters: High Pass, Low Pass, Resonance
LFOs: Saw Up, Saw Down, Square, Triangle
Polyphony & Tuning
Polyphony: 9
Timbrality: 9
Tuning: Micro, Standard
Modes: Mono
Storage
Patterns User: 1
Storage: Internal
External Storage: MIDI
Case
Case: Desktop, 19" Rack
Trigger Pads : Hard Pads
Rack Size: 19", 8U, Full
Controls: Buttons, Pads, Knobs
Display Type: LCD, LED, Backlit
Display Count H: 24
Display Count V: 2
Weight: 5 kg
MIDI / Sync / Trigger
Audio Outputs: 1/4" Phone Jack, Mono Out, Stereo Main
Audio Output Count: 13
Inputs: 1/4" Stereo In
MIDI Ports: IN, OUT, THRU
Power: 10.5V 2A
Pricing
List: $1,399
Used: $700 - $1,400
Production
Released: 2008

Product Sites & Reviews
Company Product Sites:
[+] www.jomox.com
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