Switching sounds with the K-2500

I will neither talk about how to switch external sound modules from your K2500 nor the use of a footswitch to step through your setups. But there's another interesting way to handle different sounds on one keyboard, and this one is even faster.

As you know in setup mode, you can mute zones using the keys above the sliders. This way you could prepare some different soundsets and mute all the ones you don't need while letting only these activated that you want to play. As long as it's about single zones, the Solo-Switch is a nice little helper; but muting 4 zones while activating 4 other zones manually is not that smart.

The magic key for this is CC#36, which is the midi-controller of the mute switches. Knowing this, you can program a footswitch to change between two combinations of activated zones while muting all others. Here's how to do it:

  • Start with a setup containing all the zones needed in the two soundsets (for example a piano layered with strings VS a pad/lead split > 4 zones)
  • Edit Setup
  • Go to FootSW page
  • Choose the footswitch number you want to use (in the keyboard version you can directly connect up to 4 footswitches, rack owners see table below). Usually the sustain pedal is number one, so you should go for at least number 2.
  • Set mode to normal if you're using a latched switch
  • Set mode to toggle if you're using an unlatched switch (like a sustainswitch)
  • Go through all zones and set the controller number to 36:MuteZone in all zones you want to be affected
  • Now go through the zones again and set XXXX to 127 and XXXX to 0 in the zones that you want to be switched off when you enter the setup
  • Go through all the zones and set entry to off
  • Save and exit

In case you're using a K2500 rack-unit you have your footswitch connected to you masterkeyboard. In order to let the K2500 recognize the footswitch with the right number, you have to define it in your controller like this table shows:

K2500 Controller
FootSW 1 CC#66:Sustain
FootSW 2 CC#67:Legato
FootSW 3 CC# (coming soon):
FootSW 4 CC# (coming soon):

Now if you enter the setup again, some of the zones should be muted while some others should be activated. If you now step on your footswitch, some zones should change their status depending on what you asigned on the FootSW-page. Gratulations :-)

The pros and cons of this method:

  • + Extremely fast, because every patch used is already loaded
  • + possible to hold a key with sound 1, while switching and playing sound 2 at the same time (unbeatable!)
  • + Perfect if you want to toggle often between two soundsets, cause now they use only 1 setup
  • - works only for 2 different sounds, if you ned 3 soundsets it gets complicated
  • - not usable if you need two sounds that the synth can't provide at the same time (for example if you want to use strings, but the only effect-section is set to rotary speakers for the organ)

As usual: if this works for you and you're using it, please tell me :-)