The Complete K2000 > Sweetwater's Top 10 Kurzweil Questions

Sweetwater's Top 10 Kurzweil Questions

Sweetwater Sound is one of the largest K2000 dealers in the world. We know about the tremendous depth and versatility of the instrument, and, in the course of answering many thousands of technical support calls over the past year, we have found a few commonly asked questions that new owners typically have. In order to help you understand your new K2000 and get you "up and running" as soon as possible, we have included this list of the top 10 questions about the Kurzweil K2000.

Question 1:
Some of the sounds in my K2000 have parentheses around them (Preview Drums, etc.) and they do not play. What's going on?

These are special programs called Drum Programs and the K2000's microprocessor is limited to playing one 32 layer program on one specific, predetermined channel at a time. This channel can be changed under the Master menu. Press the Master button and then change the Drum Program parameter's channel assignment to the one on which you want to play the Drum Program (the factory default setting is channel 1.) FYI: a standard program in the K2000 can be up to 3 layers deep, but a drum program can be up to 32 layers deep. Drum Programs can also be created using more traditional sounds (in addition to or in place of drum sounds) in order to have more than 3 layers or splits on a program. The K2500 has 8 drum channels!

Question 2:
I just received my K2000 and, upon close inspection, I noticed some minor scratches on the bottom of it. What gives?

The final assembly of the K2000 and K2000R is done manually in Young Chang's factory. Every possible precaution is taken to ensure that your instrument is fully protected from receiving minor cosmetic blemishes during the manufacturing process. However, the K2000 is flipped upside-down several times and passes through many different assembly stations during production, so some minor scratches or scuffs may occur.

Question 3:
Last night I loaded my K2000 with some Sweetwater/RSI sounds (or any other sounds) and did some sequencing, but this morning I tried to play the sequence back and all the sounds are gone! All the program names are still there but the sounds don't play at all, and some of them are not what they say they are. All I did was shut it off and then turned it back on! What's wrong with my K2000?

There is nothing wrong with your Kurzweil. The sample RAM in the K2000 is volatile RAM; that is, when you turn off the power to your K2000, the sample data is lost. The reason that you can still see the names of the program or hear parts of the sounds is because that some information is stored in PRAM and is non-volatile (PRAM has battery back-up.) Let's say that you loaded the RSI 16 Meg Yamaha C7 piano disk. There are several programs on that disk that use a RAM sample and a ROM sample to create a program (C7 and Strings for example.) When you turn off the K2000, the RAM samples for the C7 piano disappear (because the RAM is volatile), but the ROM samples for the strings are still present because they are stored in the computer chips inside the K2000.

Question 4:
I have a K2000 with 16 Meg of RAM. Why do I get a message that says "Not enough memory to complete this load " when I am loading some sounds? I think I have plenty of RAM remaining... the display says "Samples: 4048K".

The K2000 is telling you that you have run out of PRAM (Program RAM.) All programs in the K2000 use two types of RAM: Sample RAM and Program RAM. Sample RAM refers to any SIMM memory that was installed into your K2000 (in this case 16 Meg.) This RAM is used to store only the digital sample data and nothing else. Program RAM is where all other RAM objects such as programs, effect settings, setups, QA banks, songs, and keymaps are stored. The K2000 comes with about 120K of Program RAM from the factory, and if you plan to load a lot of programs or sequences into your K2000, then you might want to consider adding the PRAM expansion option as it will increase the K2000's PRAM to 760K. Contact your Sweetwater sales representative and he/she will be glad to advise you of availability and price.

Question 5:
When I turn on my K2000 I get a message that says "Battery voltage is low". I also have a Korg M1 and I was told that its battery would last for 5 years. My K2000 is only 10 months old, so why does the battery need to be replaced so soon?

The K2000 uses three AA batteries to preserve its internal memory (PRAM) when the power is turned off. The Korg M1 uses a special lithium battery for memory backup. Kurzweil chose to use the AA batteries instead of the lithium type because they are very easy to replace. If you need to replace the battery in your M1 you must take the instrument in to a Korg Service Center, but if you need to replace the batteries in the K2000, just turn it upside down and you will see a battery compartment on the bottom (in the case of a K2000R, there is a compartment on the rear panel.) Open the compartment with your fingernail or small screwdriver, remove the old batteries, and plug new ones in. The original batteries in your K2000 should last up to one year from the time they were installed at the factory. We recommend that you install high quality alkaline batteries such as Energizers, Duracells, or Kodak Superlife.

Question 6:
I would like to use my K2000 with my sequencer and I would like the K2000 to play more than one sound at a time (to function multitimbrally.) Is this possible?

Yes, and it is very easy to do. First you need to make sure that the K2000 is in MULTI mode. To check this, press the MIDI mode button and then press the soft key under the word "RECV". MIDI mode will be the second parameter from the top on the left side of the LCD readout. If it is not set to "MULTI," use the cursor keys to select its field and turn the alpha wheel to change its value until "MULTI" appears. Now press the Program mode button, and you are ready to start recording. In the upper right hand corner of the screen in program mode you will see "Channel: x " (x being the number of the currently selected MIDI channel 1-l6). Use the Chan - and Chan + buttons to select MIDI channel 1, and then select the sound that you wish to play on that channel (for example: #2 "Stereo Grand"). Start your sequencer recording on channel 1 and play your piano part. When you are finished recording, stop your sequencer and rewind it to the beginning. Press the Chan + button on the K2000 to advance it to MIDI channel 2 and select a new sound (for our example we will use #6 "Dual Bass"). Select track 2 in your sequencer and begin recording the bass part. Once you are finished, stop your sequencer and rewind it to the beginning and play the tracks. You should hear the piano and bass parts on the different channels. You can continue adding sounds by selecting MIDI channels 3 through 16 using the Chan + button on the K2000 and then selecting the sounds you wish to play on those channels. You can have up to 16 different sounds playing back from the K2000 at the same time.

Question 7:
I am using my K2000 to play back sequenced parts during my live performances and I have to change all the MIDI channels to a new sound between songs. This takes too long when playing live, and I'm wondering if there is any way to get my K2000 to remember which sound l was using?

Yes, there are a couple of different ways. Your sequencer can record a MIDI Program Change from the K2000 and then tell the K2000 to select that sound when you play the sequence back. Here's how: put your sequencer into record and then select a new sound on the K2000. A program change message (a MIDI message saying that you changed sounds) is automatically sent from the MIDI OUT port. (We recommend that you leave one bar of silence at the beginning of your sequence as a 'set-up bar.') When you play back the sequence it will automatically send the Program Change message back to the K2000 and the correct sound(s) will be selected before the music starts. The other 2 ways are too involved to go into the exact steps, but here is a starting point. You can save the Master settings to floppy disk (it will automatically save which sounds are on which channels) and then reload the Master file as needed. Finally, you can save and recall objects via MIDI sysex. The K2000 owner's manual goes into more detail on all 3 methods.

Question 8:
I have a K2000 and a K2000R. When I turn on the K2000, there is a flickering in the startup screen that looks like a sound waveform, but my K2000R does not seem to have this flicker. Is there something wrong with my K2000?

No, there is nothing wrong with either of your K2000s. There is a soundwave that scrolls across the "Welcome to K2000!" screen that appears every time you power-up your K2000. If the contrast for the LCD is on a low setting, you may not see this soundwave. Try increasing the LCD contrast parameter's value in Master mode on the K2000R to make it the same intensity as your K2000. Note: Due to tolerances in manufacturing, no two LCD displays that are used in the K2000 and K2000R are exactly the same, so your K2000's contrast may be at a slightly different value than the contrast in the K2000R.

Question 9:
I have some 16 megabyte SIMMs that came out of my Megatronics Gravitation Flux computer after I upgraded it to new 1 gigabyte SIMMs. Will these work in my K2000?

Your 16 Meg SIMMs will probably not work. The K2000 requires SIMMs to be 30 pin, X bit, and have an access time of 120ns or faster*. The K2000 can use 256K, 1 Meg, 2 Meg, 4 Meg, 8 Meg, and 16 Meg SIMMs installed in groups of two. Most all 256K, 1 Meg, or 4 Meg SIMMs should work in the K2000. However, not all SlMMs are created equal, and we have run into problems with some manufacturer's 4 Meg SIMMs. Also, the 8 and 16 Meg SIMMs are a little more difficult to work with because of power requirements and size limitations, so great care should be given to assure compatibility. Currently, there are only a few 8 Meg SIMMs and two 16 Meg SIMMs that are approved to work in the K2000. Sweetwater Sound stocks and installs only those SlMMs that have been approved by Young Chang and which have been successfully field-tested by our service department.

*even faster if you have the sampler option installed.

Question 10:
My K2000 is acting strange, it doesn't work/sound the way it used to. What is wrong with it?

The K2000 is a very sophisticated computer, and like all computers it needs to be reset from time to time. Anytime your instrument is acting strangely, the first thing you should try to do is a Soft Reset. To do a Soft Reset, press the +/-, 0, and CLR buttons simultaneously with the K2000 on. This will reboot your K2000 and will not erase any RAM data. If a Soft Reset did not correct your problem, then you need to try a Hard Reset. NOTE: A Hard Reset will erase ALL RAM data and there is no way to recover it. Before you do a Hard Reset you need to save any important files to your floppy or hard disk. A Hard Reset is accomplished by turning your K2000 off, and then pressing and holding the 1, 2, and 3 buttons while simultaneously turning your machine on. Once you get characters on the screen you can release the buttons. With the alpha wheel select "HARD RESET' and press Enter. The K2000 will instruct you to turn the power off and then it will reset itself the next time it is powered up. If your K2000 is still malfunctioning at this point, call the Sweetwater Sound Customer Support Department.