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Boomerang Phrase Sampler 2.0 Features

Mike Nelson

here's a letter describing the Boomerang V2 upgrade.

Any and all Rangs can be upgraded by replacing the current microprocessor with the 2.0 Module. Older units have an additional part that needs to be changed. If your AD/DA converter is an 1848, you will have to upgrade it to the newer 1845. The new software will not recognize the old converter. In this case, your Rang will have to make a trip home to Texas because it takes a special tool to remove this part.

To check this out, remove the 4 front screws & 10 bottom ones; then place the Rang on its face with the roller to the right and remove the bottom cover. You'll be looking at the circuit board in all its glory. The AD/DA converter is made by Analog Devices, is one of the larger parts and is the only square one. The part number information is printed on the part and reads like AD1845JP. The important piece of info is the 4 digits. If it says 1848, then it's got to be replaced if you want the new software.

Also, some of the early Rangs were sold with 1Mbyte of memory. This provided 32 seconds of recording on normal speed and 64 seconds on half speed. If you have a 1Mbyte Rang, this is a good time to upgrade the memory to 4Mbytes as the increased sample rate of the new software will reduce the normal speed record time to 21 seconds.

Until recently Rangs came with 2 x 275 op amps and 1 x 283. They're small 8 pin chips that reside in sockets. The objectionable pop, that can occur when pressing the thru mute switch, is related to these parts. If you've noticed this problem, it can be fixed by replacing one of the 275s with a 2134 op amp.

And finally, there will be a sliding scale for the price of the 2.0 Module. This is a move to avoid the "my new toy is obsolete" blues. As you might expect, proof of purchase is required if you didn't send in a dated warranty card. If you purchased your Rang in June 2000 or later, then the module will cost $39; May 2000, $49; April 2000, $59; March 2000, $69. February 2000 and older Rangs will pay $79.

  • V2.0 Module with 2.0 User Manual, $39-$79
  • AD1845 Converter, $19
  • 4Mbyte SIMM (memory), $23
  • 2134 Op Amp, $3
  • Shipping on any combination of above parts, $3
  • Rang Gig Bag, $39 (shipping $5)
  • Return shipping (if Rang is sent to us), $9

"So, what do I get for my money?" you ask. Good question. Here's what's in store.

  • Version 2.0 has 2 independent loops; this is like having 2 original Rangs side by side. There are a couple of modes for moving between the loops. One mode, called AB1, smoothly transitions to loop B, plays it once, then goes back to playing loop A, all with one button press.
  • A higher sample rate has been added; original max was 16KHz, new max rate is 24KHz. While this drops the sample time to 1 minute 27 seconds (with 4Mbytes of memory), the Rang now captures a lot more highs and sounds a lot crisper.
  • The STACK button can be programmed to be either latching or momentary.
  • You can go directly from recording to stacking. Press RECORD to start recording, then press STACK to conclude recording, start playback and enter stack mode.
  • There are 7 selectable decay rates. On the original the decay rate was fixed at about 2.3dB. The new rates are as follows: 1 is no decay, 2 is the original rate (about 20-25 repeats), 3-6 are progressively quicker decays and are great when using the Rang as a pure delay, and 7 is slapback (1 full volume repeat). The new decay rates & latching STACK button make the Rang a great sounding digital delay with tap tempo. The foot roller becomes the delay level when used like this. Each loop, A and B, has its own decay rate.
  • The RECORD button can be programmed to behave as it does now or be disabled during playback. Some folks didn't want to worry about hitting it while adjusting the foot roller.
  • The half speed concept has been replaced by slow speed, and you have your choice of five. All are musically related to "normal" speed. The choices are: down a 2nd, 4th, 5th, 7th or octave. Playback tempo is slowed similarly to the current software.
  • This one is small, but an improvement. Originally, if you pressed ONCE, the next press of PLAY(STOP) would stop the loop. Now you can transition between "continuous" play and play once mode. Confusing? Here's what you can do that you couldn't before. Start an existing loop with several stutters or re-starts and then smoothly transition into playing the loop repeatedly.
  • There are improvements on clicks that occasionally occur at loop boundaries, particularly when using the Rang in continuous reverse mode (live reverse lead playing).
  • And finally, we extended the button behavior so that it is more consistent. For example, in the original, if you were stacking, the REVERSE button didn't do anything. Now you can be stacking additional parts and freely reverse direction or go into play once mode.

All the new features are ADDITIONS. That is, no original features, even the lower sampling rates, have been omitted or replaced. The ONCE button shares duty as the loop A/B button. Either the REVERSE or STACK button is held down to enter one of the two program modes.

Mike Nelson

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