I’m pleased to announce the availability of MC-202 Hack v2, a Max/MSP-based application that allows you to interact with the Roland MC-202 analog hardware synthesizer.
After a ton of reverse engineering effort, Version 1 of the software (originally released in 1997!) allowed users to convert MIDI files into WAV audio files that could be loaded into the cassette input port of the MC-202 to program either or both of its internal sequencers; Version 2 now extends the concept to allow you to "go the other direction" as well – from an MC-202’s sequence(s) to a MIDI file (either using stored MC-202 cassette output files, or in real-time from the MC-202).
You can also now edit sequences directly within MC-202 Hack v2, and preview them using either a built in softsynth that emulates the sound of the MC-202 (complete with controllable parameters), or via MIDI, using either General MIDI instruments or any other MIDI-enabled software or hardware instrument.
Finally, MC-202 Hack v2 allows you to store visual representations of an MC-202’s synth settings, by virtually replicating the MC-202’s switches, dials and sliders in software; this allows you to duplicate your real MC-202’s synth settings within software. You can then easily save these settings for visual recall later. In addition, the software makes it easy to export text representations of these synth patches for sharing over the Internet.
The application is compatible with Mac and PC, and was built using Max/MSP v5. It uses custom Java and C externals, including one created using the Faust programming language; much more detail is in the documentation.