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Roland FC-100

Roland FC-100 Foot Controller

Features and Specifications:

Compatible Devices: Roland GP-8, GP-16, GR-50 and GM-70
Switches: 8 Number Pedals, Bank Pedal, Control Pedal, Group Pedal
Indicators: 8 Number Indicators, Control Pedal, and Group Indicators (2)
Connectors: RRC Out Connector, Expression Pedal Jack, Tune Signal Out,
Mode: Mode Select Switch
Dimensions: 490 mm (W) 50 mm (H) 180 mm (D)
Accessories: RRC Cable, 7.5 m
Weight: 2.4 kg / 5lb 5 oz

Introduction to the Roland FC-100:

The FC-100 is a remote control pedal designed for use with the Roland GP-8, GP-16, GR-50 and GM-70. The FC-100, when used with the rare Roland RMC-1, can be used as a standard MIDI foot pedal controller.

Links to more information:

Download the FC-100 Owner's Manual (pdf).

Photos:

Click on any image for larger view.

Videos:


Modifications:

Hacking a FC-100 or FC-100 MKII to add a MIDI Output (RMC-1)
FC-100 Modified with MIDI Input-Output

While it would be great to have a RMC-1 to effectively turn a Roland FC-100 or FC-100 MKII into a standard MIDI foot pedal, the RMC-1 is pretty rare. From time-to-time you will come across a FC-100 that has been modified to include a MIDI output jack.

I do not have a FC-100 to work with, but my guess is that if you needed to hack together a RRC to MIDI OUT circuit to mimic the RMC-1, you could try connecting the RRC pin 5 (output) directly to pin 5 (output) on a MIDI DIN jack. Connect the RRC pin 3 (+9 volt) to pin 1 of a +5 volt 78L05 voltage regulator (or similar), connecting pin 2 of the 78L05 to ground, and pin 3 (+5 volt output) to a 220 ohm resistor, then connecting the 220 ohm resistor to pin 4 on the MIDI DIN jack.

Also, it appears that the MODE switch would be set to position II, the position used for the RMC-1. You may need to experiment.

Optionally, add a 0.1 uF and a 47 uF capacitor on the +5 volt output. This helps to smooth out the +5 volt power supply, but the circuit will work without these additional capacitors. Note that while the 0.1 uF capacitor is non-polarized, the 47 uF capacitor is polarized, so be sure that you connect the positive (+) terminal of the capacitor to the +5 volt output of the voltage regulator.

Click on image for larger view.

Schematics - Repairs - Service Bulletins:

There are no known service bulletins from Roland addressing any FC-100 problems.

Download the FC-100 Service Notes - Schematics (pdf).

Replacement RRC Cable for FC-100

Click on any image for larger view.

The Roland PG-200, PG-800 and the Roland GM-70 all use a six-pin cable, frequently referred to as the RRC cable. The cables are tough tough to find, since they may get misplaced after thirty years, and often sell for $30 - $50 in the used marketplace. If you have some basic soldering skills, it is easy to make a replacement cable.

The replacement six pin connector is readily available, usually referred to as a power connector. You also need some six-conductor wire. Old computer serial cables use eight conductors, or you can search for specialized wire. The cable is wired "straight-through" that is, pin 1 on the first connector is wired directly to pin 1 on the second connector, etc.

6-pin connector for PG-200, GR-700, GM-70, FC-100, FC-100 MKII