Setting up the LN-4
- Erwin Vos
- Topic Author
In this chapter, we'll show you how to take care of the LN-4, how to set it up, and how to start playing it right away.
Proper care of the LN-4
Like all fine instruments, the LN-4 requires a protective case. The original carton is designed for shipping only and not for daily transport. A hardshell case, like the LYNC HC-4 hard case, is strongly recommended.
The LN-4 is rugged and durable but not indestructible. Avoid dropping it on hard floors, pouring beer on it, throwing it off the stage into the audience, etc.
If you need to clean the shell or keys, use a non-abrasive, non-volatile cleaning agent such as any common window washing spray which does not contain vinegar.A window cleaner containing vinegar will cause the finish to streak.
The Shoulder Strap
The Straplok™ System included with your LN-4 comes attached to a special shoulder strap. The LN-4 strap differs from guitar straps in two ways: it has an oversized hole to accommodate the locking system and it has no slit. NEVER USE A STRAP WITH A SLIT! The locking system will slip through the slit in a guitar strap, and the LN-4 will crash to the stage in the middle of your hot solo.
To attach the strap: Push the button on the strap end and insert the pin into the socket on the LN-4. Be sure to press the pin all the way into the socket, until it clicks. Release the button. Make sure that the connector is securely in place. Do the same thing for the other strap end. The strap is now locked in place and can't be detached until you press the button on the strap end.
We've had some reports lately from users who have dropped their LN-4s while playing because their straps weren't properly locked in. So we'll say this again — when you attach the strap to the LN-4, make sure that the pins lock before you use the instrument. Tug on the strap at the point where it attaches to the LN-4 a few times to test the pin connection. If you take a close look at the connector on the strap, you should see the pin protruding a little above the metal fitting when the strap is properly locked in. If the pin is still depressed when the strap is in place, it isn't secure. Double-check to make sure.
There is no reason, by the way, why you can't use the LN-4 on a keyboard stand, if you prefer.You'll need a stand designed for smaller MIDI keyboards or a stand which can be adjusted to a narrower width (around 30 inches). Be sure that the LN-4 rests securely on the stand. Attaching adhesive Velcro strips to the LN-4 and the keyboard stand is a good idea. The left hand controls are positioned so that they can be used in much the same way as the mod wheels on conventional synths.
Connecting to the Power Module
Note: Be sure the LP-4 Power Module is OFF before connecting or disconnecting the Interlync cable! Damage may result to the LN-4 if you connect or disconnect the Interlync cable while power is on.
First, mount the LP-4 in your rack near your synths. The LP-4 also has four rubber feet for tabletop use. If you are mounting the LP-4 in your rack, you can easily peel off the rubber feet. Next, select the proper voltage for your area (115V for US & Canada, 230V for Europe) with the voltage selector switch next to the AC receptacle on the back panel of the LP-4. Connect the AC cable to the LP-4 and plug it into an AC source. Make sure that the power switch is off. Connect the Interlync cable from the LN-4 to the input jack on the Power Module's front panel, making sure that the connectors lock. Switch on the Power Module. The power switch should light up. If it doesn't, double-check all your connections.
Note that when you first switch on the LP-4, the LN-4 will display its current software version, which as of this writing is version 2.41. On powerup, one of the numbered switch's LEDs will light up. The number of the illuminated switch indicates the first digit of the software version number. The Master Program Display will show two numbers, giving you the last two digits of the software version number. This display doesn't last long, so watch carefully for it. The display will then show the current Master Program number.
Warning! Use only the LYNC Systems IL-20 or IL-50 Interlync cable to connect the LN-4 to the Power Module. Internal damage to the LN-4 will result if you try to use some other cable. LYNC Systems will not be responsible for damage resulting from the use of an improper cable.
About the Power Module
The Power Module is the "life support" to the LN-4 system. It supplies power to the LN-4, receives the MIDI data produced by the LN-4, and directs that data to the four MIDI outputs. Take a look at the Power Module's front panel. There isn't much to see, but there is one useful display function on the front panel we'll focus on now. Just to the left of the input jack you'll see an LED (light emitting diode) labeled MIDI DATA. This LED will flash or light up whenever the Power Module receives information from the LN-4. Let's try it out Make sure the Power Module is on, and press any key on the keyboard. You should see the LED flicker when you press the key, and flicker again when you release the key If you don't, check your connections again.
The MIDI Data LED is a good way to make sure that the LN-4 system is working properly. Every byte of received MIDI data causes the LED to flash. Now, just for fun, press and hold the button on the LN-4's faceplate labeled HOLD. It's right next to the knob labeled VOLUME. You should see the LED light up brightly for about 2 seconds. You will rarely see the LED light up so brightly, which indicates that a massive amount of MIDI data has been sent from the LN-4. We'll explain what you did in Chapter 3, just to make sure you'll keep reading.
Try moving the mod wheels, depressing the keys to produce aftertouch, or twisting the Volume knob. All of these actions should cause the LED to flicker. Before going on, make sure that the Volume knob is all the way up (fully clockwise).
Connecting to your Synths
The next step is to connect the LN-4 to your synths. notice, under OUTPUTS, the four DIN connectors labeled 1-4. These are the MIDI outputs for the LN-4 system. There are four of them to allow you as much flexibility as possible in configuring your system.
If you have four synths or less, follow these steps. First, connect a MIDI cable from Output 1 on the Power Module to the MIDI In jack of your first synth. Set that synth to Poly mode, MIDI Channel 1. (If you don't understand what that means, look in your synth manual or refer to the next chapter.) Connect Output 2 to the MIDI In of your second synth. Set that synth to Poly mode, MIDI Channel 2. Continue this procedure, setting each synth to the appropriate MIDI channel. The idea is that each synth will only respond to MIDI data on one channel, ignoring data on other channels, and that each synth has its own data connection to the power module. This is the most useful way to configure your system, as it will allow you the most flexibility when using the LN-4. Refer to the illustration below.
If you have more than four synths, you're lucky. The best way to configure your system is to follow the steps above for the first four synths. Then, connect a MIDI cable from Synth 1’s MIDI Thru jack to Synth 5's MIDI In, and set Synth 5 to Poly mode, MIDI Channel 5. Connect Synth 2's MIDI Thru to Synth 6's MIDI In, and set it to Poly mode, Channel 6. You're probably getting the idea by now. See below.
The diagram is pretty tangled, but not as much as your MIDI setup will be when you actually connect all these synths.
All four OUTPUTS on the back of the Power Module carry exactly the same information, so it doesn't matter which one you plug into. And they're all connected in parallel which means there's no delay between them. The numbers are only for convenience.
You can connect up to 16 different MIDI synths and effects to the LN-4 system in this "daisy chain" configuration.Which means you can create rich, thick four synth "layers" right from the LN-4! That's if you have your synths configured correctly. Be sure that each synth is assigned to a unique channel number. Then set each synth to Poly Mode. We'll talk more about "Channels and Modes" in Chapter 2. For now, just remember that because your synths are connected to the Power Module, data will go into all of them.All the data the LYNC transmits goes into every synth, all the time. How your synths respond to this data depends on how they're configured.
Alright, let's play some music. First make sure that the Volume knob on the LN-4's faceplate is all the way up (fully clockwise). Next, press either of the two buttons next to the mod wheels until the display under MASTER PROGRAM reads 11. This is the first program in the LN-4 and has been set at the factory to a "plain vanilla" setting — Outputs 1-4 set to MIDI Channels 1-4 and all outputs sending similar information. (The factory setting for Program 11 has Outputs 3 and 4 playing an octave higher than Outputs 1 and 2.) Play some notes on the keyboard. If everything has been set up correctly, you should hear all of your synths playing together. If not, try putting one or more of the synths into Omni mode, so that they'll play no matter which channels you're sending on.
If you have more than one synth, you'll have an instant MIDI stack. Try playing with the pitch and mod wheels to get a feeling for the controls. Try changing some other controls while you play and listen to the results. You may not know what you're doing, but you can't hurt anything.If you accidently get into the Programming Functions, press button number 8, labeled EXIT, to get back to Performance mode. Go wild. When you're satisfied, continue.