The Korg X5DS, a MIDI-enabled digital keyboard, is a professional-standard instrument. The advantage of having a MIDI-enabled keyboard is that you can use it to communicate with external devices, such as sequencers, drum machines and recording equipment. The downside to this is the reliance on software, which can crash or malfunction. The Korg X5DS is a sophisticated and flexible instrument. If yours isn't delivering the expected level of performance, fix it yourself to save money on repairs.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
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Things you need
- 12-volt adaptor
- Electrical tape
- Phillips screwdriver
- Soldering iron
- Silicone sealant
Connect a brand new power 12-volt supply or one that you know is working. This eliminates faulty power cables through the troubleshooting process.
Turn on the Korg X5DS and play each of the 61 keys. If each key creates the expected note at the expected volume, the keyboard and key contacts are fine. If there are any dips in volume or unexpected sounds, put a piece of electrical tape on the problem key.
Press the "+" key if there is power but no sound. Some instrument settings do not work when out of specified note range. The "+" key sets the key range to a higher octave. If this doesn't work, try the same thing with the "-" key to go down through the octave range. If you still get no sound, the problem may be linked to the key contact strip.
Observe the digital display. If there is an "Invalid Data" message, the modulation wheel is telling the software to alter a note to a value outside of the possible parameters. Set the wheel to the centre of its rotational range to reset the data value command.
Turn off the Korg X5DS and remove the 12-volt adaptor. Place the Korg X5DS on a flat surface. Unscrew the top and side panels of the keyboard with a Phillips screwdriver. This exposes the keyboard assembly and circuit board.
Check each flex cable is attached firmly to the circuit board. A loose fitting flex cable can render a digital instrument completely functionless. Examine the circuit board. Look out for blown resistors and fuses, which have a brown discolouration. If you spot one, unscrew the circuit board and put it face down. Melt the solder joint fusing the connector pins to the copper trace strip, using a clean soldering iron tip.
Place the circuit board face up, then slide the blown component out. Fit an identical replacement. The value of the component is printed on the side. For example, "12K-ohms."
Lift out the keyboard assembly and place it to one side. Push down on the back of any keys that you marked as faulty. Lift the front of the key up with the screwdriver and remove it from its housing. It's not fixed in; it is held in place by the top panel when assembled.
Apply a small amount of silicone sealant to any worn-out key contacts. This re-establishes the contact between the key and the contact strip. A worn out key contact is typically the cause of a faulty key or low-volume key.
Tips and warnings
- Use the multimeter to test for dead spots on the circuitboard. Only do this test if you're confident testing live equipment.
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