Creating Multi-Patches On and Sequencing With the Kawai K-1 Series

Before you can begin to do any sequencing with the K-1 synthesizer series instruments, you must first create a Multi patch configured for multi-timbral operation. A Multi patch is nothing more than a collection of up to 8 Single sounds, and what you do with them is up to you. You can layer them all on top of one another, or split them eight ways across the keyboard, but that is not what you want to do for sequencing. You want to set each of the eight Sections on a separate MIDI channel so that they can respond independently to the incoming MIDI messages from your sequencer. Here’s how it’s done.

Preliminary SYSTEM settings:

1. Push “SYSTEM”
2. Push “- NO” until the display show “SYSTEM/MIDI = SYS”.
3. Push “SYSTEM” three more times.
4. Push “- NO” to set “INT PROTECT = OFF”.
5. Continue pushing “SYSTEM” until you see “SYSTEM/MIDI = SYS” again.
6. Change “SYS” to “RCV” by pushing “+ YES” twice.
7. Push “SYSTEM” again, then set “RCV CH = 1” using the “- NO” button.
9. Push “SYSTEM” again, then set “OMNI = OFF” using the “- NO” button.
10. Push “SYSTEM” again, then set “RCV PRG = SECT” using the “+ YES” button.
11. Push “MULTI” to exit the SYSTEM mode and begin editing.

Creating a Multi patch for sequencing:

1. Pick any Multi patch that you are not particularly fond of, for it will be overwritten.

2. Push “EDIT”

3. Push “C” for Window 3

NOTE: The upper left corner of the display shows the current parameter for editing.The upper right corner shows the on/off status of the 8 Sections and their channels.The lower left corner shows the Single patch assigned to the selected Section.The lower right corner shows the parameter’s value for the selected Section.

Pushing the numbers 1-8 will select the different Sections for editing (an underscore “_” will appear with the Sections MIDI receive channel)

a. The first parameter in Window 3 is POLY (polyphony) or “the total number of simultaneous notes a Section can play”. You want POLY = VR (variable) for each Section. Push “- NO” until the value reads “VR”, then select each Section with the 1-8 buttons, and set them all to VR (if they are not already).

b. This step is only for K-1 keyboards, not modules.

Push “C” again to get the next parameter in Window 3, MODE. This determines whether or not the sounds can be played from the keyboard (KYBD), incoming MIDI, or both (MIX). You want MODE = MIDI for each Section (use 1-8 to choose them and -/+ to change the value).

Because the K-1 has no Local control, this is also the way to make your K-1 synthesizer operate as if the Local Control is OFF. The keys no longer play the sounds, so you must make sure that the sequencer “echoes” the MIDI from the keyboard back out to the K-1’s input. This is usually called “MIDI ECHO” or “SOFT THRU” or “ECHO THRU” on most hardware and software sequencers.

c. Push “C” again to get the last parameter in Window 3, RCV CH (receive channel). For this example, set the RCV CH = the Section number. So, Section 1 = channel 1, Section 2 = channel 2, etc. When you are done, the numbers “12345678” will be displayed in the upper right corner. Now you are finished with Window 3.

4. Push “B” for Window 2

a. The first parameter in Window 2 is ZONE LO. This is the lowest note a Section can play. Because you never know in which range of the keyboard you’ll be playing while sequencing, it is best to have all the keys available in this Multi patch. This range is 128 notes wide from C-2 to G8. Set the ZONE LO = C-2 for each Section. (Remember to use 1-8 to choose the Section, and -/+ to change the value.)

b. Push “B” again to get the next parameter in Window 2, ZONE HI. Set the ZONE HI = G8 for each Section.

c. Push “B” again to get the last parameter in Window 2, VEL SW (velocity switch). This is a feature for switching between two sounds (SOFT/LOUD) with keyboard velocity (touch sensitivity), or adding a new layer with only high (LOUD) velocities, etc. But since these sounds will be sequenced, they should play at ALL velocities. Set VEL SW = ALL for each Section (by now you know to use 1-8 and -/+).

5. Push “D” for Window 4

This window deals with transposing, tuning, level, and output. Because this patch is for generic use with sequencers, you want to set these parameters to nominal values, and make any deviations with the software or hardware sequencer itself.

a. set TRANS = 0 for each Section

b. set TUNE = 0 for each Section

c. set LEVEL = 100 for each Section

d. set OUTPUT = L+R for each Section

NOTE: Window 1 is for assigning the Single patch you want to each Section. But if you pick the sound by sending a MIDI Program Change message instead (one for each Section) from the sequencer , it is very easy to change your mind about the sound selection later. This way, the same Multi patch (yes, the one you are making right now) can be used for any song you might record, and the sequencer remembers which sounds you wanted. Here is a chart of how the Program Changes match the Single sounds…

Patch # 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
IA 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
IB 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
IC 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24
ID 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32
iA 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40
iB 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48
iC 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56
iD 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64

EXAMPLE: Single iB-7 => Program Change #47 on the sequencer

6. Saving your work

a. Push “WRITE”.

(At this point, you can choose to save this edited patch to a new destination by pushing A, B, C, D, and any number 1-8. You can even write directly to a RAM Card by pushing “MULTI I/E”. The new destination will be displayed as you enter it. If you do nothing, the patch you started with will be overwritten.)

b. Push “+ YES” and the display will ask you if you are “SURE?”

c. Push “+ YES” again and you’ll get “COMPLETED!”.

That’s it!!! Now you have a working Multi patch that can be used for any sequencing task you can dream up, so go ahead and dream. Have fun with your Kawai K-1 Synthesizer!