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Author Topic: Minilab mk I - Keys, notes encoders not working problems - SOLUTION  (Read 5047 times)


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Hello, I registered just to post this. If you've had problems with keys/notes on your Minilab not working or only intermittently and the encoders sending up and down values randomly, this may be the problem:

My Minilab developed problems with the volume encoder sending up and down values when just rotating in one direction. This was intermittent. Then the volume and parameter change (encoders 1 and 9) stopped working along with three of the notes. One of the encoders started sending volume and parameter change MIDI messages along with its own data.

I believe this is caused by one or more of the encoders developing dirty contacts. The encoders are well sealed but oxidation and probably the grease used to give the encoder some resistance (otherwise it spins too easily) cause dirt on the contacts. This results in the microcontroller that reads them, getting confused signals and then sending incorrect or no MIDI data, to your computer. I have fixed my own Minilab mk I, which is why I've come to this conclusion.

The solution is to replace or clean the encoders - if you have the skill and tools (soldering iron mostly). Desoldering the encoders is awkward due to the amount of heat required to desolder the two metal tabs at the sides. Once removed, you can bend the four tabs underneath to disassemble and get to the contacts and clean them with isopropanol. Or just replace with better quality encoders (Alps, Bournes, for example.) If you cannot do this, then I'm sorry to say, your Minilab will never work. You could try spraying contact cleaner under each but this may just wash the grease onto the contacts making it worse - but worth a try if your resigned to throwing it away.

I hope this helps you. The firmware is fine, it doesn't get 'corrupted'. There seems to be no other electronics issues (bad capacitors for example), it's simply dirty encoder contacts, I believe. This may be the case with the Minilab mk II and any other Arturia equipment using the same encoders.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2019, 01:08:44 pm by UHF »


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