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Thread: Connecting keyboards to midi encoder

  1. #1

    Connecting keyboards to midi encoder

    I was lucky enough to be able to purchase some beautiful manuals that I would like to convert to a digital harpsichord. They are made for midi and have all the wires to hook up to a midi encoder; but I am not super familiar with electronics and could use a bit of guidance in doing so. From what I understand, knowing the matrix the keyboards are wired with is half the battle, here's some pictures of the electronics if anyone could help me understand a bit better?

    edited to add: there are two ribbon cables of 16 wires each on each keyboard

    IMG_0835.jpg IMG_0834.jpg

    IMG_0831.jpg IMG_0832.jpg

  2. #2
    Administrator Admin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003

    I'm afraid that it's not possible to answer your question from the pictures, unless someone recognizes the manufacturer of the keyboards and happens to know the matrix configuration. So where did the keyboards come from?

  3. #3

    They are from Rodgers, who manufactured a digital harpsichord and apparently had some leftover keybeds. This is the eBay listing I purchased them from, there are more pictures including some possibly helpful product codes:

  4. #4
    Administrator Admin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003

    I think the problem you're going to face is that these keyboards were made to interface with Rodgers electronics and may require more than an off-the-shelf MIDI encoder. Actually, I think that is very likely as these are velocity sensing keyboards. Just about any keyboard can be adapted to work in a matrix configuration, but the likelihood that there's something out there that you can plug these keyboards into and be good to go is not very great. I'd contact the seller to see if he has any recommendations and/or can provide a circuit diagram of the keyboard and it's decoding circuitry.

  5. #5

    Well, that's too bad! Thank you very much for the information though. I'll try contacting the seller and see if I can get anywhere.

  6. #6
    p Piano John Kinkennon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Vancouver, WA

    I think the pinout will match the Roland manuals I use for my virtual organ, but unfortunately I cannot be positive. Ask Matt (the seller) what he knows. If he's interested I could try setting up one of my encoders with one or two of these manuals for a reasonably priced combination. Send me an email at and I can send you info on a similar keyboard that should be a match. Worth pursuing in my opinion.

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