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Music Workstation

Q.I’ve installed DIMM memory in my Fantom-X6/X7/X8/XR/Xa to increase the sampling time. However, when I try to save a long sample I get an error message telling me that I’ve exceeded the memory capacity. Since I have more memory now, why does this happen?

A.To better understand why this might happen, let’s look at how the Fantom-X uses its memory for sample storage.

When working with samples on the Fantom-X, two different types of memory are used:

  • RAM (random access memory) is used when samples are recorded or played back. RAM is a temporary storage area, and its contents are erased when the power is turned off. Because of the nature of this type of memory, it cannot be used for long-term data storage. The Fantom-X’s built-in SDRAM and user-installed DIMM memory are forms of RAM.
  • Flash memory is used for onboard backup storage of samples so they can be recalled for later use. Flash memory is rewritable, and its contents are saved even when you turn off the power, making it ideal for long-term storage. The Fantom-X’s user and card memory are forms of flash memory. User memory is built-in (the Fantom-X6/X7/X8 has 32 MB of user memory, the Fantom-XR has 16 MB, and the Fantom-Xa has 4 MB), while card memory is only available when an optional PC card is installed in the Fantom-X’s PC Card slot. Depending on its memory capacity, a PC card can increase the flash storage space up to 1 GB.

Whenever you record a new sample, the Fantom-X stores it in RAM. While the sample resides in RAM, it can be played and edited. However, since RAM is cleared when the Fantom-X’s power is turned off, you must save the sample to flash memory (user or card) if you want to retrieve it for later use. This requires that there is enough free storage space in flash memory to accommodate the size of the sample - the longer the sample, the larger its size.

By installing a DIMM in the Fantom-X, you’ve greatly increased the amount of sampling time available. This means that you can potentially record a sample that is too large to be saved in the Fantom-X’s built-in user memory. Therefore, to save a long sample recorded with the expanded DIMM, you must save it to an installed PC card that has enough free space available to store the sample. If you often record a lot of long samples, a good rule of thumb is to acquire a PC card with a memory capacity that is at least equivalent to the size of the installed DIMM. For example, if you install a 512 MB DIMM, install a 512 MB PC card as well. For more storage flexibility, you may even want to consider a larger capacity PC card. (NOTE: In addition to samples, other Fantom-X data - such as patches, performances, and songs – can be stored in user and card memory. The amount of data currently stored in these memory locations impacts the amount of free space available for storing new data.)


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