ARP 2600

You have the following options for the ARP 2600:

  1. Fit a MIDI retrofit kit
  2. Use the ARP 2600’s existing CV/GATE sockets with a MIDI to CV converter

1. Fit a MIDI retrofit kit
You can fit a MIDI retrofit kit which will allow you to control the ARP 2600 directly using MIDI. Our MIDI retrofit kit is for MIDI IN and THRU only. Fitting a retrofit kit is a skilled job which should be undertaken only by a competent synth service engineer or fitted by us at our premises in Epsom, near London (only available for UK).

ARP 2600 MIDI Retrofit Kit


2. Using the ARP 2600’s Sockets
As a semi-modular synth the ARP 2600 is already fitted with many control sockets including CV, Gate, Trig & VCF which is all you need for control of the notes. The sockets you need are as follows:

KBD CV (labelled output) – Located on the far left of the synth below PRE-AMP.
Provided you don’t have the ARP keyboard connected, this socket can be used as a is a standard volt per octave CV input to all three oscillators. This is a 3.5mm mono jack socket which should be connected to the CV output of a Kenton converter (set to CV). You will need a 3.5mm to 3.5mm mono jack lead for this connection. See leads section below.

If you have the ARP keyboard connected you can’t use this socket for CV IN and will instead have to plug a patch wire from the KBD CV input of each oscillator to the vertical row of inputs marked ‘MULTIPLE’ and then your CV input will be the unused input on the multiple. Of course plugging the jacks into the KBD CV inputs will disconnect them from the keyboard anyway. You can’t use the 2600 from both it’s own keyboard and from a CV converter at the same time.

GATE – Located on the long row of sockets across the middle of the 2600. Ninth socket from the right.
This is a gate input. It is a 3.5mm mono jack socket which should be connected to the Gate output of a Kenton converter set to Gate (high gate voltage if selectable). You will need a 3.5mm to 3.5mm lead for the connection. See leads section below. Again, plugging into this jack will disconnect the ARP keyboard.

TRIG – Located on the long row of sockets across the middle of the 2600. Eighth socket from the right.
This is a trig input for the envelope generators. It is a 3.5mm mono jack socket which should be connected to the Aux output of a Kenton converter set to TR or trigger. You will need a 3.5mm to 3.5mm lead for the connection. See leads section below. The trig input only triggers the ADSR so if you are only using the AR then you can manage without using this input. Again, plugging into this jack will disconnect the ARP keyboard.

KBD CV (VCF/Filter) – Located on the long row of sockets across the middle of the 2600. Thirteenth socket from the right.
To control the VCF/Filter connect it to the Aux output of the CV converter. If you have one of the Solo models then the Aux output may already be being used for trigger in which case you won’t be able to control the filter cutoff. Otherwise set the controller number for the Aux you are using and then use this controller to vary the amount of filter cutoff. Bear in mind that if the filter is already at it’s maximum setting then you will hear no effect when you use external control.

MIDI to CV converter settings
Use this link to see the range of Kenton converters suitable for this model

Kenton MIDI to CV converters

Use the following settings on the converter for this model:

CV – This version requires 1 Volt per Octave control. Set the CV select parameter to CV or Volts/Octave – this is the Kenton default setting
Gate – This version requires gate (5V is usually enough) – this is the Kenton default
Aux1/Trig – If trig is required you need to set the aux controller number to TR (trigger)
Aux1/Filter – The KBD CV input to the filter requires a 0-10V analogue signal – this is the Kenton default setting

Leads
You will need 4x 3.5mm to 3.5mm mono jack leads

If you would like to know more about MIDI to CV, see What is MIDI to CV?