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MMD > Archives > December 1998 > 1998.12.07 > 06Prev  Next

Ampico vs. Duo-Art Accenting
By Dick Merchant

Dan Wilson stated in MMD 981203 that "It may not have two suction
levels running at once, but its lightweight valve system makes it far
faster than the Duo-Art at jumping between one level of intensity and
another."  I don't think this is true.

While it's true that the Ampico left and right side expression boxes
can jump between one level of intensity and another a good deal faster
than the Duo-Art can change the vacuum levels in either the accompani-
ment or the solo sides of its expression box, the Ampico can not change
the vacuum levels in the stack as fast as the Duo-Art's Themodist
system can.

This is quite evident from listening to popular music Duo-Art and
Ampico rolls play.  The lightning fast Themodist is able to separate
out the louder melody notes from the surrounding quieter accompaniment
notes without any perceptible timing errors.  This the Ampico can't do.

You can easily perceive the time displacement of many rhythm notes in
Ampico rolls.  The 1 & 3 beat bass notes often noticeably lag the beat
if there's volume-emphasized notes going on the left half of the key-
board at the same time as the "on beats."  You can really hear some
strange & tricky sounding stuff going on when there's 2 or 3 volume-
emphasized notes going on in the left side of the keyboard with an
"off-beat" chord.

I consider this "Ampico Syncopation" a characteristic of the system,
not a condemnation of it.  I really like the Ampico popular music
rolls, but it's obvious what's going on.  Although the Ampico B is
thought to be faster than the A, it's a moot point as the production 
B rolls had to play well on the A and have sufficient time displace-
ments for the Ampico A's regulators to react.


Dick Merchant
Carlsbad, NM

(Message sent Mon 7 Dec 1998, 08:07:29 GMT, from time zone GMT-0700.)

Key Words in Subject:  Accenting, Ampico, Duo-Art, vs

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