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Improve Korg Volca Beats with Individual-Out Mod

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WARNING, PERFORMING THIS MOD WILL VOID THE WARRANTY OF YOUR VOLCA BEATS AND MIGHT POTENTIALLY DAMAGE IT, SO PROCEED AT YOUR OWN RISK!


The Korg Volca Beats is a really cool affordable analog drum machine, but having all the instruments summed into one output is a serious limitation. Luckily, Korg made it relatively easy for us to tap all the instruments off the circuit-board and feed them to individual outputs:

  • Kick
  • Snare
  • Toms (it is actually possible to get both toms separate, but I didn't think that was necessary)
  • Hats
  • PCM sounds

The tools you need are:

  • 5x 3.5mm audio jack
  • Nice thin wires will make your life a lot easier. Some thing like this would work perfectly.
  • A soldering iron with a thin tip.
  • A thin strand of solder.

The video below demonstrates how it looks like, what it sounds like and how I've done it.

 
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Step 1: Open up the volca

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Open up the battery cover and take out the batteries.

Pry off the two buttons of Stutter Time and Depth

Now you can take out all large screws. (You can leave in the smaller screws, as they just hold in the battery compartment.)

Carefully open the enclosure making sure you don't stretch the battery and speaker wires too much. I actually had to re-solder both speaker wires as they just broke off from opening and closing the enclosure too often. Not such a big deal, but beware of it.

Step 2: Mount the five audio jacks

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Find connectors that will leave enough space to fit underneath the circuit board. Mine were only just small enough that it fits, but I can't tighten the screws on the enclosure completely without putting pressure on the circuit board.

Measure out the locations for all connectors and drill holes of the right size.

My connectors didn't have enough length to fit through the casing, so I had to clear some extra material around it with a larger drill bit.

How do you get the toms separately please ?
You said it was possible, but where are the points ?
Thanks

I would also really appreciate info on how to output the toms separately. It would be great to be able to pan them left and right.

victor.winters made it!2 months ago

Thanks for all the info, very clear instructions :) Did the mod yesterday and all works fine...just a question about the snare: The volume is really low now, is that normal with this mod? (Just want to know if I didn't mess anything up by accident)

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jortband4 months ago
nice arvid, I am already listing after itvbut seeing the flexibility of the circuit makes me want it even more. And a well documented Instructable, however use a tripod next time for filming ;)
rainers sain4 months ago

Hallo Arvid!

Thanks for this well done and usefull documentation!

You say, that "it is actually possible to get both toms separate" - but how? Where can i find the connects? Would be nice to get that info!

Rainer