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Mr. Fix-It Solders On!

 In preparing for Saturday’s Top40 gig with a band called Common Ground, I have to make sure my gear is in top working order. My decade-old Alesis QS6 has been plagued in the past few years with a faulty right output jack that sends no audio. I’ve fixed t in the past by opening up the unit, removing the mainboard and re-soldering the output jack contacts, but the problem keeps coming back again.

So on Tuesday evening, I decided to open it up again and this time remove the old solder and re-solder it with  new solder.  So I did that, put everything back together, plugged it in and ta-d…

Oh wait, it’s not turning on.  Maybe one of the ribbon connectors I removed wasn’t plugged in fully. So I opened it up again and found that one of the ribbon connectors going to the LED screen wasn’t pushed in all the way. So I plugged it in again and…

Uh-oh. Things aren’t looking good.

But alas, it was one of the connectors, which wasn’t seated properly, leaving a pair of the connector pins exposed. Damn my worsening eyesight! But that was the culprit, and soon I was making patch edits for certain sounds on the QS. That thing used to be my workhorse during my old acid jazz days, and I even used it for Rhodes, strings and delay-effect organ sounds in my e:trinity era as well. It got supplanted by my Nord Electo a couple years ago, but I still hold on to the old QS6 because of its sounds – it’s got nice bread-and-butter ROMpler sounds and some very nice digital pads.  So it’s nice I keep the old black horse still running. Knowing how to wield a soldering iron really helps.