Super 8



PPG Hints and Tips

This section is dedicated to the foibles and quirks of PPG products!

I have noticed that some PPG instruments have a reputation for being unreliable. This is probably as a direct result of them being at the limit of the technology available at the time. Justified or not, some of their odd habits are what makes them so character full, others are just damn annoying! 
Many people have said that one should "never use a PPG on stage" but may be the same could be said about a small fragile wooden stringed instrument liable to go out of tune at the slightest change of temperature or humidity and that may cost many tens of thousands of pounds! As with the violin, many high-profile aficionados have proved this sweeping statement to be wrong. Having done a few basic service procedures, mine has (touch the wooden end-cheeks of my Spirit) been very reliable.
Whilst I am an ardent fan of Palm's creations I will admit that there are a few points  to be aware of when becoming the proud owner of one...
Wobbly Foundations Some of the system instability of machines like the Wave 2.3 can be attributed to the slightly under specified PSU. The poor thing is run flat out, with the regulator on the back panel reaching flesh-meltingly high temperatures!  So over stressed was the PSU in my Waveterm B that it blew the bridge rectifier. This was a scary time as I thought it would the end of  the poor thing, but after some serious surgery it clunked its way back to life again. As with the electronic design of the PSU, the mechanical aspect of it seemed to be an afterthought too. In order to avoid the same situation arising, a higher spec bridge is recommended, if a little fiddly to fit!

The offending PK10-EDI-8345

An early sign that all is not right with your Waveterm is that of a wobble in the displayed image that moves vertically across the screen. This usually means that the capacitors in the PSU are going to fail imminently! (this was linked in with the afore mentioned bridge rectifier failure)
Stop Whining! The first thing I noticed with my Wave 2.3 when it arrived, after reveling in the big blueness, was the fact that the back-light on the LCD didn't work. Minutes later, having lifted the front panel and re-attached a simple loose wire, I stood back and admired my handywork. Still basking in the glow of the little LCD I turned up the mixer channels expecting to hear the familiar clangorous tones only to be assaulted by a hideous high pitch whining noise! Aagh, what have I done, I've broken the wretched thing just 10 minutes after unpacking it!
Having done a little research on the matter, I discovered that this is a common fault, and is due to the high voltage inverter circuit for the LCD back-light.
(Paul Maddox has a good section on this at http://www.ppg.synth.net/ )
To be continued...