Kurzweil 1000 Expanders
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Evolution of the Kurzweil K1000 / K1200 Modules and Keyboards

If you are new to the Kurzweil 1000 series you may want to view this excellent overview of the Kurzweil 1000 series evolution by David Etheridge in the April 2000 issue of Sound on Sound. The 1000 PX and K1000 keyboard were the first products. Then various upgrades were made available. The 1200 series added more programming features and pulled it all together with the K1200, Pro 1, Pro 2, and Pro 3. The Pro 1 is an enhanced PX with sound blocks A and B. The Pro 2 is a combination of SX and HX modules with all the upgrades. The Pro 3 is a combination of GX and HX (plus HXA) modules.

Evolution Details

General Background:
The evolution of the Kurzweil 1000 series produced many different products. The details behind this evolution will help the user understand some of the confusing aspects and too see the similarities between the products, the upgrades sold by Kurzweil, and the current upgrade possibilities. An important concept to understand is how the samples evolved - or did not evolve. The samples were the digital recordings of the sounds from real instruments. Once created, these excellent samples were available for any product. New samples were created over time to expand the capabilities of the products. Each new set of samples was added to ROM chips, then, these chips were placed in one or more of the products. (See the Evolution ROM Chart below.) The ROM chips did not change over time. What changed was the operating system (OS) and which of the ROM chips were included in the products. The operating system also contained the programs (patches) so new operating systems over time also changed the programs included in a product. As each module evolved better programs were substituted for weaker ones - or were changed to reflect musical trends - and some people lost a beloved sound or two in the process. Of course the products had a warranty and we have an early copy here - Warranty (side A)    Warranty (side B).

The Operating System (OS):
A 'basic' operating system was produced for each of several basic products - the 8 button modules, the 12 button modules (introduced later), the EGP module, the 78 key keyboard and the 88 key keyboard. The operating system did two major functions. 1. It determined the features of the product. 2. It included the programs (patches) and the tables to link the programs to the sample ROMS. Each of these 'basic' operating systems went through several revisions (1, 2, 3, 4 and 5) each of which had some tweaks in the features and perhaps the programs. Each of these revisions had minor changes to fix bugs and/or to provide new features and/or provide an upgrade to add more programs and tables to link to any added samples. For instance, when the PX A Block upgrade was announced, it required a new revision of the OS to add the new programs, and the tables to link the programs to the new ROMS. The important change to most owners came with revision 5. This was when Kurzweil changed the way programs were organized and provided the users the ability to select programs from a list of up to 999 possible programs. (Well, only 255 programs could be in the unit at any one time.)

Programs and Programs Lists:
Programs (patches) are the actual patches or objects that determine how a sample is processed to create a sound. Programs are referenced internal to the machine by an ID. Program lists are nothing more than tables that link a Midi Program number (the number a midi sequence would send to select a program - or the 'program number' a user enters on the front panel) to select a specific program ID. Kurzweil provided a way to create these lists (or tables) so a user could have many lists to select from for different gigs or situations.

Programs and Program Lists - Pre Revision 5
The program IDs for programs in the original units were in the range 1 to 127 (0 was not used). Not all of the IDs were used by the programs provided so that the user could created new programs and add them. The supplied ROM programs were typically placed in ID locations 1 to 63. Locations 64 to 128 were for the RAM programs the user created. The program lists in these products were called 'Program Maps' (Pmap) because they mapped a Midi program number to a program ID. (Midi can select only 128 programs). The maps had locations 1 to 128 (0 was not used). Each location in the table contained a program ID that would be selected when the user selected a program number through Midi or on the front panel. The Master table selected which map was used. Two ROM program maps were included in most of the units and each map contained a group of the included programs. The maps duplicated many of the program IDs they contained, but in a different order. Some products shipped with programs stored in RAM and with a RAM Program Map. These were deleted if the unit was given a hard reset. Also, some revisions of the OS changed the programs and program maps. You can find many of the original ROM programs and RAM programs in the Programs (Patches) page.

Programs and Program Lists - Revision 5
When Kurzweil upgraded the operating system to version 5, the Midi Program maps (The map from Midi numbers to program IDs) changed. These went to the Bank concept - each Bank using a new type object - the Program List (PList). The master table only had a link for each of the banks - to a Program List type object. The ROM and RAM numbers for the patches also changed. The ROM programs were in ID numbers 1 up (up to the number supplied in the OS ROM) and ID numbers 255 and lower were for new or edited programs stored in RAM. Each bank contained 99 locations, each location contained a program ID. ROM banks were provided for bank 0, 1, 2 and 3. Ten banks are 'available' at any one time so the user could select any of 999 program numbers from the front panel or using Midi. The first digit of each program number is the 'bank' identifier. For example, the 200s make up the Plist named "Library I" (Bank 2) and the 300s make up 'Library II' (Bank 3). The second 2nd and 3rd digits in a Plist give the MIDI program number of the program. Edited or new programs are automatically given the next empty RAM ID location and a program number in the 400’s range - I.E. in bank 4 in a RAM PList called "RAM Progs". These numbers can be reassigned. A user could even move Plist "Library I" from Bank 2 to Bank 5, ETC. Also with revision 5, Kurzweil introduced a unique scheme to allow Midi to select any of the 999 program numbers. Refer to the 1200 series manuals for the Midi details. Like in the original products, each bank usually had duplication of which program IDs were mapped. For example, in the Pro I, Bank 0 Program 84 is the same as Bank 03 Program 053. (Each program is also mapped in another bank, but they are not in order so it's not noticed.) Banks 2 and 3 were however unique in some products because these two banks had every program ID included but with no duplication. Banks 4 to 9 were for users. In fact, a user could store a newly created bank in locations 0 through 3 - their Bank would just overlay the ROM bank supplied by Kurzweil. Those who set up sequenced songs using Midi program numbers were surprised when they upgraded to the new OS revision - the sequences no longer worked. They had lost the original mapping and even some of the original programs (patches) were no longer in the new units. The only way to get the programs back was to load them into RAM from some copy of the original units ROM programs. The only way to get the original MIDI Program maps was to redo the program lists in one of the Banks to match the original list, then use the new Midi scheme to first select that bank, then the original sequence would work. Many of the original programs can be found in the Programs (Patches) page.

Evolution ROM Chart *

This chart illustrates the various sample (sound) chips (ROMs) that are installed in the various modules. The various modules also had specific SetUp ROMs that contained patches that utilized the sample chips and OS (operating system) or 'Engine' ROMs that determined features. The OS ROMS were often common to several modules. The sample roms are installed on the 1000 generic board in sockets U50 through U61 (see the 1000 generic board column for the layout). The Setup and OS ROMS were installed in locations U21, U22, U32 and U33 (not shown in this chart)..

Evolution of the Kurzweil modules in an educational nutshell
  white boxes are empty sockets
1000 PX (basic) 1000 PXA (option) 1000 PXB (option) PX plus ? (version) became Pro 1 1000 generic board
U  56 U 57 PXA U 57 U 56 PXB PXA U 57 PXA PXB U 56 U 57
U 53 U 61 U 53 U 61 PXB PXB U 53 U 61 PXB PXB U 53 U 61
U 52 U 60 PXA PXA U 52 U 60 PXA PXA PXA PXA U 52 U 60
1000 SX (strings) 1000 SXA (woodwinds) AX AX Plus Pro 2 or 1000 generic board
U 56 U 57 SXA U 57 U 56 U 57 U 56 HXA SXA HXA U 56 U 57
SX U55 SX U55 SX HX SX HX SX HX U 54 U55
U 53 U 61 U 53 U 61 U 53 U 61 HXA HXA HXA HXA U 53 U 61
U 52 U 60 SXA SXA U 52 U 60 U 52 U 60 SXA SXA U 52 U 60
U 51 U 59 U 51 U 59 HX HX HX HX HX HX U 51 U 59
1000 HX (horns) 1000 HXA (saxes) 1000 generic board
U 56 U 57 U 56 HXA HX and the SX were combined to become the AX.  Very few were sold.  The HX + SX + HXA + SXA became Pro2.  The SXB and HXB options may not have been sold commercially. U 56 U 57
U 54 HX U 54 HX U 54 U55
U 53 U 61 HXA HXA U 53 U 61
U 52 U 60 U 52 U 60 U 52 U 60
HX HX HX HX U 51 U 59
U 50 U 58 U 50 U 58 U 50 U 58
1000 GX (guitar) GX ver 5.0 Pro3 the last tone module. Pro3 1000 generic board
U 56 U 57 U 56 U 57 Pro3 has been deciphered.  It used the same engine chips as the Pro1, Pro2 and GX (ver5).  It had it's own setup ROM.  Three chips on the GX were moved and the HX & HXA were added.  Moving GX51,55 & 59 was probably necessary for layout reasons. GX-55 HXA-57 U 56 U 57
GX GX GX GX GX-54 HX-55 U 54 U55
U 53 U 61 U 53 U 61 HXA-53 HXA-61 U 53 U 61
U 52 U 60 U 52 U 60 GX-51 GX-59 U 52 U 60
GX GX GX GX HX-51 HX59 U 51 U 59
GX GX GX GX GX-50 GX-58 U 50 U 58
The GX ended here.
No ROM chips were ever added. The Pro3 upgrade has been successful in 8 and 23 button versions

1000 EX module
This has the same sound ROM chips as the PX but a different motherboard which lacks several key chips. It is not suitable for upgrades, nor is it necessary. They do some neat 'effects' no other module can do so use them! The general strategy was probably known before the first module was released, so Kurzweil may not have developed voices after the original modules were introduced, they were already waiting.

Thanks to Dennis, Ray, David, Brice, Bruce, Andrea, and the Kurzweil users group for helping scrape up this obscure information.

* From the ex-Alzerom site with approval of David B

Module and Keyboard Evolution Identification

This list includes all the modules and keyboards (and the various upgrades) that we know about.  The parameters p1 through p4 are the hex values one will get if they do a MIDI system exclusive request for the product information. (See the Kurzweil 1000 Series Developer Information in the manuals page.)  Some of these are not documented anywhere but here! Each of these could have had two or more versions of the operating system (OS) - fixing bugs or changing features.

p1   p2    p3   p4 Unit 
$15                    K150
$19                    K250 or 250RMX
$64 $01 $00 $00 1000PX (8 button Professional Expander - The first module marketed)
$64 $01 $00 $01  PXA (8 button with A Block upgrade - Upgrades were sold by Kurzweil)
$64 $01 $01 $02  PXB (8 button PXA with B Block upgrade)
$64 $01 $01 $01  PX Plus (12 button with PXA sounds)
$64 $01 $00 $02  PX Plus w/B Block  (12 button PXA with PXB sounds upgrade)                                              
$64 $01 $02 $00 1000SX (8 button Strings Expander)
$64 $01 $02 $01 1000SXA (8 button with A Block string upgrade)
$64 $01 $03 $00 1000HX (8 button Horn Expander)
$64 $01 $?? $?? 1000HXA (8 button with A Block horn upgrade)
$64 $01 $04 $00 1000GX (8 button Guitar Expander)
$64 $01 $05 $00 AX Plus  (12 button Acoustic Expander with SX + HX sounds)
$64 $01 $?? $?? AX Plus  (12 button AX Plus + SXA and HXA upgrades)
$64 $01 $05 $02 1200 Pro (12 button Pro - Not sure what module gives this response? )
$64 $01 $07 $00 1200 Pro 1 (12 button PX with all upgrades and new OS features)
$64 $01 $08 $00 1200 Pro 2 (12 button SX + HX with all upgrades and new OS features)
$64 $01 $09 $00 1200 Pro 3 (12 button GX + HX with all upgrades and new OS features)
$64 $02 $00 $00 K1000 Keyboard (PX Sounds - The first keyboard marketed)
$64 $02 $01 $00 K1000 SE Keyboard (Added After touch)
$64 $02 $01 $01 K1000 SE/Ext Keyboard (PXA Sounds)
$64 $02 $01 $02 K1000 Pro76 (76 key Keyboard with Pro 1 sounds and 48Kb RAM)
$64 $02 $06 $00 K1200 Professional (88 key Keyboard with Pro 1 sounds and 48Kb RAM)
$64 $03 $01 $01 1000EX
$64 $04 $01 $00 EGP

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