Ar mk1 ultimate pad velocity fix

Hi everyone !

After years of struggling with my old AR MK1 which has two sluggish pad.
Pad which were really improved with some cleaning and a new carbon sheet.
But still it was not perfect, just improved.

For the history, those two pad worked, but the velocity need to be deactivated for confort using : sound/sound setting/velocity to vol off to be used correctly.
If not, I had on those two pad which give a velocity response of 20/127 value on both pad for a 70/127 value for all the other pad when use without too much force.
It was quite annoying in chromatic mode, so “velocity to vol” need to be deactivated depending on the context.

I decided to try something :

  • open the AR mk1 box ;
  • take the carbon sheet out ;
  • fully draw each of the twelve black carbon surface with an old carbon pen
    • important that it is a used, bold, and old and rounded pen
    • this surface is the one which will be in contact with the PCB when you hit the pad
  • slightly cleanup the carbon sheet after this operation to prevent the carbon residue to fall on the PCB when mounted. Yes there could be some residue due to this operation, so clean a bit the surface to avoid any residue, and blow on it and clean it up. Yes the carbon you added with the paper should stick on the carbon sheet.

I am not responsible for any mistake you might do if you follow that path.
But I can tell you that, for me, it is NEAR working like what I would expect as “brand new” set of pad.
And I had doing this far better result than just swapping the carbon sheet with a new one.

Take a lot of caution doing all those step.
I told you that because one day, I open my AR and plug wrongly the two cable between the two PCB and I had to send it back to Elektron which fortunately was able to fix it for me ( THANKS A LOT ELEKTRON SUPPORT FOR THAT ).

So this message is more targeted for people which feel confident opening there old AR MK1 if they had this issue than for anyone else. So ask a smart Electronic colleague if you don’t feel confident doing this.
It is game changer for me :slight_smile: