Any MalletKAT users? Module/Upgrade Question

SlingyFan

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I just purchased an older MalletKAT Pro WS, it has on board sounds, but I'm considering upgrading. Alternatemode offers an internal upgrade to the Kurzweil module, but the price is $700 + shipping both ways, and its bulky, so shipping won't be cheap. Any MalletKAT players here that have the Kurzweil sound module, or using a separate aftermarket module who can offer some feedback or suggestions? Just trying to figure out if there's a cheaper module upgrade option than sending it in.
 

wolfereeno

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I have a malletkat w kurzweil sounds. The sounds are great. There are some tweaks to make the sound sets malletkat friendly and the more useful mallet sounds are clustered together. Not that you couldn't tweak that with any module.... But using external modules or samples is so easy - hard to say the board is worth 700+ shipping.

I would hesitate to spend 700 for the upgrade just for the module. I'm only a beginner mallet player. If I was a hard core player and gigged with it, then the upgrade might make more sense - or buy another mallet kat as a backup and get with the latest options. Or maybe do a trade in? Alternate Mode is super friendly as I'm sure you know. The newer malletkats are much lighter...

Are you sure you can't install the upgrade yourself?
 

kb

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I don't have any experience with any With Sounds models, but here's my take:

I you had NO onboard sounds, it might be be worth it, just to not have to deal with a separate module.

But since you've already got Sounds that you can use for quick/easy-in-and out gigs, I'd research stand alone modules. Then even if your present Kat dies, you've still got sounds for your next endeavor. And, you didn't have to ship and be without it for a month.

If the Kat is going to be an important gigging instrument for you, I agree with woolfer that having a backup is a good idea...almost a necessity.
 

wolfereeno

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There are plenty of great rompler style modules for cheap that would have good mallet and piano type sounds.

I had a korg karma for a while that I loved using with the mallet kat. I thought about doing surgery on it to turn it into a keyboardless module. But instead found something else.

If you're interested in VST Plug-ins, check out Chromaphone. I love that one for mallet like sounds.
 

SlingyFan

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Thanks for the replies guys. Right now I'm a novice mallet player at best, it's been close to 20 years since I played in high school and having to relearn everything. I likely won't be gigging with the malletkat any time soon, so spending a ton of money on it probably isn't really the best idea. The W/S on board mallet sounds are great, ie vibes, marimba, xylo, chimes, steel drums, but it's the other "FX" sounds that are just really cheesy. I'd just like an option to throw on some fuzzy guitar sounds or sax sounds etc. A buddy from work who is a DJ does a lot of stuff with MIDI and he is going to come over with his software and see what we can come up with. I'll check out Chromaphone, thanks for the rec.

On a side note, what are you guys playing your Kats through? Piano amp? Bass amp? Powered Speaker?
 

wolfereeno

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I just use the self powered studio monitors in my studio. But if you need a portable then any PA or full range keyboard amp would work.

If you want effects or strange sounds, then just use the computer (or an ipad) and plug ins. The options are unlimited.

If you really want a module, there are tons on ebay. Romplers, synths, etc. As for romplers, you can get a older roland sound canvas for $60 all the way up to a yamaha motif xs, which might be like top of the line for $1K. Or you can get a killer desktop synth module like a Virus, or a new roland.

FWIW, I use a Korg M3 desktop module and my computer for soft synths. The M3 has this strange karma mode that I am in love with.
 

wolfereeno

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BTW, check this out. he's using a Nord and a Dave Smith Tetra.

 
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SlingyFan

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Very cool, thanks for all the suggestions guys! I'm thinking laptop w/ software is the way to go.
 
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