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Interior pic, power connections, knobs?

 
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Randaleem



Joined: 23 Sep 2007
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2007 8:06 am    Post subject: Interior pic, power connections, knobs? Reply with quote

Hi George, Moderators,

I like the look of this new modular very much! I think you will be busy for some time...

Absolutely LOVE the logo and the way it looks on blank panels in the empty side of the cabinet.

A couple questions, now that the "release" has happened. (You said yesterday on Matrixsynth to wait until today and my questions posted there would be answered.) Some were, a few weren't... (Glad I can ask here and bypass the Meh's!)

Matrix mentioned a pic showing the interior of the case; but the link he provided on the AH mailing list did not work for me.

I'd like to see the rear of a module other than the Power/MIDI, and also the inside of the cabinet itself? With all the "meh's" and anonymous posting at Matrix, I'm unsure if you were the source of the electrical box comments? Do the modules mount on rails, PAIA wing case like perhaps?
Or are there 12 plastic electrical boxes inside?

You described the power distribution a bit; but a pic of the distro board and a module rear would be worth, say, two thousand words?

Also, since you've mentioned adding our own knobs a few times now, I'd like to know the pot shaft length and front panel setback from the front edge. (To see how much room there is for knobs when the case is closed and to know whether the pot shafts will need to be cut as part of a knob upgrade?)

Thank you for bringing this product to market! I wish you every success!

Kind regards,

Randal
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GMattson



Joined: 15 Sep 2007
Posts: 84
Location: Western Washington

PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2007 11:16 pm    Post subject: "Inside" the box Reply with quote

Hi Randall,
Thanks for coming.

No, I had some mounting frames LASER cut out of 12 GA HRS steel and drilled and tapped for the hole pattern. The mounting frame slides into 1/8" grooves around the inside perimeter of the case before we frame and glue the case. It's captured in the case. The front edge of the mounting frame is one-inch from the edge of the front lip.

The panels are 3.5" X 3.5" and are LASER cut out of .063 5053-H32 aluminum. So, 1/16th-inch aluminum. No, They don't fit and electrical box. LOL. I thought that was funny. They're too small. But, I didn't want to answer anything to give away the size before Saturday. This unit is really small!

Which explains the knobs. The hole spacing is 1/4" holes spaced in a matrix (no-not him) at 0.7" center-to-center. The shaft diameters are 1/8th inch, or 0.125" and extend 1/2" from the pot bushing. Most bushings are 1/4" from the base of the pot, which is 1" from the edge of the front lip. So, there's still 1/4" of room before we run out of recessed space. Some of the pots have a 0.155" diameter. I still have some tweaking to do on the design before production and don't know which pot will get the final nod.

The inside of the cabinet looks like the inside of any other 11.5" X 15" box enclosure with 2.5" depth. (from the mounting frame to the back.)

I have a power entry that takes up 2" X 3" on the bottom center. Above that- I have two power distribution boards that measure 1-3/16" X 3.5". each has a connector to connect to the power supply and each other. There are 6 more connectors on each board to plug the module power to.
(Except the board by the power supply. I don't need a connector for it and the MIDI).

The first board is centered in the middle of the second module row up and second is centered with the top edge even with the lower edge of the top row of modules.

Finding knobs will be tough. The one on the MIDI rate control won't even fit side-by-side on the 0.7" spacing. Of course, it's on a normal size pot. The guys who have played with this will back me on this, The caps on the pot shafts work really well. It's just different and people don't even want to try.

But, if you do find something, post it on the forum where everybody can have a resource.
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GMattson



Joined: 15 Sep 2007
Posts: 84
Location: Western Washington

PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2007 11:24 pm    Post subject: Knobs again Reply with quote

I forgot,

There are no pix of the back of any other modules because their aren't any. The current modules are all hand wired, point-to-point on perfboard. This IS a prototype. Not really the type of thing to show off. They look good but, people see an example and automatically think that that's what they'll look like. No matter what you tell them. I hope they don't look like this, it takes a lot of time to do it this way.

I have a few things to tweak before production, The schematics are done, some values need adjusting and the PCB's are designed. I don't want to spend money on PCB's that don't work. So, I've been playing with the prototype boards, changing things, etc.....
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Randaleem



Joined: 23 Sep 2007
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 8:39 am    Post subject: Re: MMM format details Reply with quote

Hi George,

Thank you for the detailed reply! (replies, actually.)

Sounds like you're making a well integrated, sturdy case to go with the cool new modules and format!

I completely understand about protoype vs. production look-feel and customers expectations. I also understand about getting the PCB's right!So let me say what I probably should have said in the first place?

As I mentioned in the Matrixsynth thread; I'd like to support this new format. (Which I really like, BTW!) What I really have been wondering is which connector and pinout you'll be using to get power to the modules. Asking for an interior shot would probably answer that, so that's what I asked. Wondering also the PCB size and its mounting holes grid. (from the panels it appears to be a mounting grid of 2.4 x 2.95? So the PCB's will be 2.7 x 3.25?)

I'm currently putting together a few PCB's for SDIY projects. If I can add a power connector pinout and mount grid so they can be used in your new format, it seems like a good thing. That's why I'm asking all these MMM format questions.

Finally, it appears that the PWR/Midi has individual MTA.1 connectors for each panel mounted part, a la dotcom. Will this be part of the production boards? I ask, because again, getting "signal" amidst the noise "meh"-lee at Matrix was pretty tough. I recall you? saying that the panel parts could be moved around to any of the 16 positions if a person wanted to do so? (Which I thought was pretty cool.) Having panel parts connected like this is also an advantage if a pot/switch/jack/led should ever go bad. Do the production PCBs do it this way? Or with PCB mounted parts?

Thank you again for all your efforts; I hope your initial sales figures are meeting your hopes and expectations!

Doncha just love new product rollouts!<G>

Kind regards,

Randal
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Randaleem



Joined: 23 Sep 2007
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 9:03 am    Post subject: Re: Size matters Reply with quote

GMattson wrote:
No, They don't fit and electrical box. LOL. I thought that was funny. They're too small. But, I didn't want to answer anything to give away the size before Saturday. This unit is really small!


Hi George,

You know, when I "guessed in the Matrix thread that these were 3.5sq. it was AFTER pulling a double switch cover in my kitchen...

FWIW, Your module sure looks like it will fit. Except the box has 1.812" spacing of the outlet mounting screws, and your module looks to be 1.75?
But a 3.5"sq. panel completely covers the front of the normal 4x4 box in my Kitchen, and looks like the setbacks for the PCB would allow it to fit. YMMV. But that's where the<correct>guess about size came from.

About that size thing, I've seen a lot of different ways described to visualise the size of your system. Everything from "just bigger than a page of typing paper"(too small), to "a couple of NYC phone books".

Two pieces of 8-1/2x11 LTR paper, overlapped one inch long side Gives 11x15. So just a bit narrower. Euro LTR paper will be closer! A spread thumb and pointer finger span is close to the depth. Nice size.

Unsolicited advice; probably worth what it costs... The 11-3/8 dimension might better be 11-1/2? That makes for 1/2" material all around, instead of the current 1/2" top and bottom and 7/16" each side. No need to rabbet sides for dust exclusion with your steel mounting frame in slots.
And the horizontal "stack" unit will still be less than 24" wide.

Kind regards,

Randal
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GMattson



Joined: 15 Sep 2007
Posts: 84
Location: Western Washington

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 3:32 pm    Post subject: sizes Reply with quote

Hi randall.

LOL,

I never really checked it with a quad box. That's funny. Maybe that's why it felt comfortable to me.

With the exception of the PS/MIDI board, the PCB's are all 3.125" W X 2.650" D. They're mounted with .125"X 3/4" threaded standoffs. The standoffs are threaded with a 4-40 thread. The mounting holes on the boards are 0.1" from each corner edge.

For the prototypes, I used the R*d*o S*a*k 276-158 General-Purpose Component PC board, cut the non-hole ends off the board and drilled a 1/8" hole in each extreme corner hole. It fits perfectly.

Somebody suggested that I sell the case with mounting frame and blank panels (they all are cut with the holes-like the second post) and include the standoffs and a set of screws for the DIY people.

I don't have a problem with that, I just never thought of it before. If people want enough of them to make it feasable to do, we can open up a DIY section. I like to build circuits and anything on the outside wasn't a major focus. But, yeah, I guess I designed a pretty nifty DIY project box kit. LOL.

Let's take a vote- DIY'ers unite. Open up a new topic section for DIY ideas and lets see what happens.

The wood stock is 3/8". The mounting frame is imbedded ~1/4" around the perimeter. The module dimensions 3 across are 10.5" and height are 14". I added 1/8" slop horizontally and vertically around the mounted module perimeter to allow 1/16" space around the modules for some "scootch-room. My original prototype box was so tight I had to "tent" adjascent modules and force them flat to mount them. I didn't like that.

I actually wanted two sets of boxes. One 3/8" stock and one 1/2" stock. I only received the 3/8" stock version so, I never had a chance to try the 1/2" version. There's no rabbets, two 1/4" passes (1/8" kerf). one at 1" from the cut to the front edge and the second at the same setting at the back edge to make the back panel inset. Easy. Then, miter to size.

I'm using 6-pin 0.100" MTA connectors for power connections. Pin 1=+15VDC, Pin 4=Gnd and Pin 5= -15VDC. The power supply to power distribution connectors and pinouts are the same but, I'm using MTA 0.156" connectors. Headers on the board, socket connectors on the cables.

The panel connectors: I use MTA 0.100" 12P connectors on the boards and the panel controls all have MTA 0.100 3 Pin connectors. Some cables have the connector on both sides so it's a simple matter of slipping it on the PC mount terminals of the component. The other end slips onto 3 of the 12 pin board connectors. So, 4 components per 12 pin header. The cables are all the same length and allow the component to be moved anywhere on the panel from where it's connected on the PCB. Pretty simple to do. But the connector costs really add up. It would be easier just to PCB mount the panel controls but, I wanted to have this flexibility.

I think people should be able to play around and experiment. It's like hanging a picture or moving furniture. You change it, look at it for a bit, then move it, check it out that way. Why not the same with panel controls? When you have them where you want them, make some awesome graphics. I'd like to see 2-case wide murals across these things. I had to be limited to single-panel graphics. But, I bet there's some talented people that could design a great-looking, system-wide graphic for their system.

I think I answered everything. Let me know if I didn't.
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Randaleem



Joined: 23 Sep 2007
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 5:04 pm    Post subject: Re: sizes Reply with quote

George,

Great answers, Thank you. I have just grabbed one of those 276-158A PPH boards and it lines up with the printout just as you say. Simple.

I'm glad your PWR pinout and connector matches the dotcom. Smart.

I assume you'll wire the pots/jacks the same too?
(My pcb's already follow that "standard"<G>).

Are the module mounting screws 4-40 also?

I'm sure you're right that there will be some amazing graphics done for these panels. But I DO think yours are just fine, too.

Kind regards,

Randal
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GMattson



Joined: 15 Sep 2007
Posts: 84
Location: Western Washington

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 5:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

*I'm glad your PWR pinout and connector matches the dotcom. Smart. *

I didn't want to be too different. The intercabinet power also uses 6-pin DIN jacks with the same pin designations. Except, I don't have 5V distribution.

*I assume you'll wire the pots/jacks the same too?
(My pcb's already follow that "standard"<G>).*

I don't know. I tried to assign a common theme. Pots pin 1 top, Pin 2 wiper, pin 3 bottom. Switches Pin 1 top, Pin 2 common and pin 3 bottom, if there is one. Just split up the sides on DPDT switches. Then, the 3-pin connectors just line up in order on the 12 pin headers.

*Are the module mounting screws 4-40 also?*

No, they're 6-32X1/4

I could have gone with smaller but, if people wanted to use a module in another format rack, the slots allow for that. The panels should be able to fit in some sort of "universal" mounting plate for the other formats. I never developed one, I figured other people could. My plate is a little full staying focused at the moment.

I also figured other people could make other format panels and put in system compatible jacks, pots, knobs, whatever. Then, just stash my board behind it. That's why I didn't start with a "standard" format. I wanted the portability first. Adapting from there to other formats is pretty easy if the person is willing to do it.

That's why I couldn't answer certain questions. They were valid questions but, all I could say was "There's a reason, please wait until Saturday." I wanted to say something but my hands were tied. I was hoping it would "click" when they saw it. But, by then, they were so focused on the fact that the format was different, they didn't notice that it is easily adaptable to just about anything else out there if so desired.

Back to it Smile
[/quote]
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Randaleem



Joined: 23 Sep 2007
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 7:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GMattson wrote:
I don't know. I tried to assign a common theme. Pots pin 1 top, Pin 2 wiper, pin 3 bottom. Then, the 3-pin connectors just line up in order on the 12 pin headers.

Hi George. I appreciate the reply.

I think the two key panel parts WRT connectors are pots and jacks. (Switches can be easily rotated)

Dotcom uses p1 for signal and p2 for GND for jacks. (I had mine the other way round-GND on p1, but changed all my board layouts to match Roger's pre-existing setup.)

For pots, they have ccw on p1, wiper on p2, and cw on p3. (This also follows general pot mfr numbering, which can't hurt. Where p1 is on the left when the tabs are pointing down and the shaft is towards you.)

I'm unsure what "top" means in your reply, so you may already be following this? I'm only pushing right now because the MMM is still new enough that you "could" match the existing pinout for these two items.

And as each of us doing PCB's or synth products chooses to be the same in some of these key places, I think the overall SDIY market benefits. Less confusion, easier tech support, etc. (There's still PLENTY of places to be different! Laughing )
Quote:

The panels should be able to fit in some sort of "universal" mounting plate for the other formats. I never developed one, I figured other people could.

Thank you for the suggestion. I'll look into doing this, and making it available. Doug Wellington might also be interested.
Quote:

I also figured other people could make other format panels and put in system compatible jacks, pots, knobs, whatever. Then, just stash my board behind it. That's why I didn't start with a "standard" format. I wanted the portability first. Adapting from there to other formats is pretty easy if the person is willing to do it.

I'm glad you wrote this. Because it is IMO exactly the reason to have the pot and jack pinouts match the dotcom. Which is already being reflected in some of your other pinouts anyways. But also because they provide parts pre-wired in a size and quality that suits the larger formats. That will make it easier for guys to use your boards. Besides, right now it's pretty simple to adopt it; in a few months--or weeks--it will likely be pretty much non-possible.
Quote:

I was hoping it would "click" when they saw it. But, by then, they were so focused on the fact that the format was different, they didn't notice that it is easily adaptable to just about anything else out there if so desired.

I'll bet it'll click over time. As you know already; this gig is a marathon; not a sprint. (though there are certainly sprints within the marathon!)

Kind regards,

Randal
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