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  1. Tony
  2. MOTIFXF
  3. Saturday, 29 December 2018
Hey all,

My Motif XS8 that has served me faithfully for 9 years started exhibiting weird and unpredictable tone generation last month. I thought I had found a solution with a factory reset, but today the unpredictable problem occurs more regularly. Attached to this post is a video that demonstrates the issue I'm having with the oscillator sounds right now.

Background: I bought my Motif XS8 as a return from a rental in 2009 and installed 2GB desktop computer RAM soon afterward. I regularly loaded promo sample banks, including the S700 piano sample provided through Motifator.com. I leave my XS8 on all the time to be ready for when inspiration strikes. At random times during the past 9 years, the XS8 would freeze and not make any sound at all. In these cases, I would turn off the keyboard, wait a few seconds, then turn the keyboard back on. It wouldn't matter if the keyboard started right away, or if I set the keyboard to autoload a file or factory reset. The XS8 would reset properly and played normally.

Issue: However, about a month ago, when I played the keyboard, the sound that came out of the XS8 was filled with static, or some kind of warbling sound. The video describes it better than I can with mere text. I sent a message to Yamaha support, who asked if I had a mic attached to the A/D input jack. I said I didn't, and that I performed another factory reset, and this time it seemed to have solved the issue (for then). However, a month later, the issue just returned, and even factory resets don't fix the issue.

Although I don't know exactly how the underlying hardware works, my technical mind suggests that the problem could be caused by oscillators being out of sync, possibly because of an electrical problem. Could there be an onboard battery that needs to be replaced, or could capacitors have blown due to old age?

Hope someone can help.
References
  1. https://youtu.be/XuVsqVhpXyc
Responses (5)
Bad Mister
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Power down your Motif XS
UNPLUG the unit from the wall completely
Remove the two DIMMs (RAM) boards.
Plug the XS back in
Power up your Motif XS

Let us know.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MOTIFXF
  3. # 1
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Hi Phil! Glad to follow you over to this site! Thanks for responding.

I removed the DIMMs. Turns out I had only 2 512MB DIMMs so total 1GB sample RAM. I turned on the unit and the sound appears to have returned to normal. I'll leave the board up as usual and see if anything else goes funky.

How can I tell if it's the RAM that's gone bad or the circuitry that connects the RAM?

Thanks,
-Tony
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MOTIFXF
  3. # 2
Bad Mister
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
How can I tell if it's the RAM that's gone bad or the circuitry that connects the RAM?
Assume it’s the DIMMs sticks. It’s why I immediately ask you to remove them. I’ve not heard of it ever being the circuitry that connects the RAM. Of course, it is always a possibility.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MOTIFXF
  3. # 3
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Thanks so much for your quick response over the holidays, Phil.

This week, Andre from Support also sent me a test programs document to follow. When I ran the DIMM tests, the first reported the lot as NG. The second (full spectrum DIMM test) wouldn't even run.

Now I need to find someone who sells older model DIMM (168-pin DIMMs of 64, 128, 256, or 512 MB capacity, synchronized DRAM; PC100 or PC133, and comprised of no more than 18 chips per module). The service manual recommends looking at YamahaSynth.com (this site), but doesn't say specifically which page. Is there a manufacturer/model number best recommended for the Motif XS8?
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MOTIFXF
  3. # 4
Bad Mister
Yamaha
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Check online Keyfax.com
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MOTIFXF
  3. # 5
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