Play+ Synth Tedium SOLVED!

I pride myself on being a smart, patient, electronic musician who has used/spent time with hundreds of synths/samplers/boxes over the last 28 years but man, this current synth setup on the Play+ really takes what I thought was an excellent product in the Play and adds levels of frustration that I never expected.

Following the manual: 1.01 Beta (same results with 1.0), starting from a blank project:

"2. Switch Play+ to change Audio/MIDI Mode. Press [Shift] + [Audio/MIDI]. The Function buttons will be lit purple for MIDI and Synth tracks as opposed to green when purely in audio sample track mode.

  1. Turn the (Sample) knob which is now assigned to the device list. The three synth slots can be found in the device list along with the MIDI device options.

  2. Double tap (Sample) or press the lower left screen button to choose the secondary patch parameter. Turn (Patch) to select a synth preset patch.

  3. Press a [Pad] to place on a step. The synth selected will determine the pad color: Synth 1, Violet; Synth 2, Yellow; Synth 3, Green."…

This is what happens:

  1. Track one (Synth 1/FAT)…I lay down violet steps, the notes play from (Synth 1/FAT) great.
  2. Unselect track one, select track two, pick (Synth 2/WTFM), lay down steps. Steps are not a different color, they are violet and both tracks are now playing from (Synth 1/Fat).
  3. Reconfirm that track one is NOT selected. Select track two, change the synth preset, the preset for track one changes.
  4. Manually go into steps on track 2, turn the synth select dial, THEN they turn yellow and sounds from (Synth 2/WTFM play).

Same with piano roll entry.

  1. Select track one, pick (Synth 1/Fat), lay down notes in piano roll. Violet colors, notes play from (Synth 1/Fat. Great).
  2. Deselect track one, arm track two…pick (Synth 3/ACD), Go to piano roll, it’s blank so I’m on the right track. Enter notes, they are purple again. Move the synth/sample knob around to pick a new preset, the sounds from track one start changing. Exit out, go back to piano roll, enter notes, now the notes are yellow AND purple.

I’ve reset the system, gone back to the original firmware and updated again, none of this is working correctly. Anytime I think I’ve got it figured out, something else goes off the rails. It seems like the system is having a hard time seeing that different synths are being selected for anything once the first track of synths is laid down. I’m not using any other MIDI devices or instruments.

I think if I understand you correctly you just have modified the steps slightly, by adding tracking selection and that causes the problem. Don’t select a track at all when doing this – just turn the sample knob to the synth you want and then place the notes where you want and I think it will work.

I’ll give it a shot once I’m out of this work call! thanks…

I see your edited out comment about piano roll, probably should explain that too. The other comment is for non-piano roll mode.

This is how I do it:

For piano roll mode you should select tracks for the amount of notes you will play at a time per synth, if only 1 note, then one track, 3 notes at a time, then 3 tracks. Then when you are done programing that one synth if you want to program another select another track or set of tracks and do just that one by itself in piano mode.

I think you may be able to program 2 or synths at once in piano mode, but it’s easy for that to get messy because it has no good way of showing two synths that are both doing the same exact note, so programming them one by one makes it less likely to run into issues. It also might place notes in strange places if you make something really complex.

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You are a life saver. Truly thank you for the tips, you were correct. My adding in the selecting/unselecting a track was the issue. I spent literally 4 days on this and was ready to throw in the towel. Everything working perfectly now.

Polyend, if you’d like to take this post down, feel free. This was my error and I apologize for the slightly negative post. The product (much like my Tracker and original Play) is great. Just takes some elbow grease :slight_smile:


I used it the way you described too more than once and scratched my head, selecting a row should not cause it to get confused about placing things, but it does :man_shrugging:.

Yeah, in their very cool quest to make it super open on the sample side (just drop squares anywhere!), it seems counterintuitive on the synth side, especially if you are coming from any other sequencing/synth/groovebox environment where you traditionally “arm the track you want to address, lay down notes/steps etc. then unarm.”…not “lay down notes/steps, THEN arm the track to do other things…”. I assumed arming the track first would be the way to go lol. I’m just grateful you found this post, I don’t know how much longer I would have gone before returning it.