Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

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kidgloves2
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Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by kidgloves2 » Sat May 29, 2010 4:58 pm

Should Roland and Korg jump back in? Or do MOOG and Dave Smith have it covered?

I would love to se a re-release of the Jupiter-8 with modern updates. And the Korg MS-20 or Mono/Poly.

Or something new.

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MC
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by MC » Sat May 29, 2010 5:29 pm

Too niche a market compared to the home organ, education, and worship market.

And Roland/Korg/Yamaha are more interested in synthesis technologies they can own (IE patent/trademark) such as LA synthesis or FM. Subtractive synthesis is public domain and cannot be patented.

They have VAs because they can own the firmware.
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kidgloves2
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by kidgloves2 » Sat May 29, 2010 5:48 pm

Like Roland's V-Piano technology? That thing is amazing. No velocity switching. Too expensive though

EricK
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by EricK » Sat May 29, 2010 5:57 pm

THat thing better sound good. My father hasn't found a good piano patch on the G8 and still plays the rd500.


Interesting take on having to OWN the method, MC. THat does make perfect sence. Why do something that isn't going to be proprietery?

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nikola
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by nikola » Sat May 29, 2010 6:07 pm

because it sounds good :D
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Mr Arkadin
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by Mr Arkadin » Sat May 29, 2010 6:23 pm

Being a bit of a Roland freak I have to say I've given up on them doing anything good again, apart from the occasional V-Piano type thing. There 's not much I like post-1993 (JD-990 was my last Roland kit), everything else I own is before that. They really have lost their way, they have no plan for how virtual instruments will affect them - their own attempts were awful in the VariOS (Jupiter 8 and TB-303). Maybe that's why companies like Moog are more interesting to me these days.
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Sweep
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by Sweep » Sat May 29, 2010 6:50 pm

This is slightly off topic for analog, of course, but every time I hear anybody say Roland have lost it and haven't done anything good for a decade or two I shake my head in disbelief.

I've had a V-Synth XT since they first appeared, and I've done amazing things with it, expecially when using its ability to use samples as waveforms.

I have so many new and probably never before heard sounds that I don't know what to do with them all. I also have the best percussion sounds I've heard in my life, sweeps and twitters that leave the VCS3 standing, bird sounds that can fool cats and impress bird-watchers, and so on virtually ad infinitum. This is the best synth I've ever played.

(And no, I don't have any connections with Roland.)

I've discussed this before with people who have some knowledge of the V-Synth, and the general view seems to be that it's too complicated for many players and hasn't been fathomed by most people. I'm a bit surprised because I found it very well laid out and easy to understand, but maybe this is the only explanation for the way it seems to be continually overlooked.

If you asked which I'd rather have - my V-Synth XT or a new Roland take on the design of the Jupiter 8 or the Juno 6/60/106, the answer wouild definitely be the V-Synth. If you asked which I'd rather have between the V-Synth and the VCS3 I originally learned synthesis with, or the MS20 I used to own, or the Moog Voyager I have, the answer again would have to be the V-Synth.

If all you really want is classic seventies/eighties analog, then I can see why the V-Synth wouldn't appeal so much. But it definitely isn't the case that Roland have lost and haven't done anything of note for the last couple of decades. Far from it.
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kidgloves2
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by kidgloves2 » Sat May 29, 2010 6:58 pm

Do you have any links to your v-synth sounds? You have me curious.

Sweep
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by Sweep » Sat May 29, 2010 7:26 pm

On my website at the moment (http://sweep.infinite9ths.com) there's Grey Seal, which was done using the sounds of a grey seal (naturally), plus whales and other sea creatures, with the sounds being adapted to become instruments - so it isn't just sounds being used as effects; the opening passage for example starts with the original greay seal sample, a sort of farting sound, and then goes into a lead line in which that sound has become an instrument. And so on. If you click on the `Varuous' tab on the left and check the write-up on grey seal it gives details of what's involved. (There's a fault at the moment and you can't play the sound files from the Various tab, only from the main page.)

There's also Crystal Manifestation, where the EMS sweeps and twitters are the EMS Rehberg virtual Synthi, while the continuing pulse is the V-Synth. When my `Beyond EMS' site goes live there'll be a lot of V-Synth EMS impressions.

Bode One uses V-Synth samples of the barber-pole phaser designed by Harald Bode. There were plans to put this into production, but that didn't work out and I used Bode's original demo as a sample source for the V-Synth in this demo piece.

And Sunlight Through Ice uses the V-Synth as a sound-processor for a software synth (I can't remember which one I used now). I did a lot of manual filter sweeps and so on with it.

In time I'll be adding a lot more V-Synth stuff to the main website, including the precussion, birds and so on I mentioned. BTW the first piece in the player, Morgan, was done using the V-Synths D-50 emulation. It's all D-50 sounds, but from the D-50 card in the V-Synth.
Websites: http://musicbysweep.com and http://theSynthiMusicSite.infinite9ths.com

synthpro
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by synthpro » Sat May 29, 2010 8:29 pm

I have to honestly say that Korg is doing great with their digital equipment. I have a Radias and it has some great analog sounds. Roland would be better off with analog gear because they do not have any analog modeling I like.

This is just my opinion.

kidgloves2
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by kidgloves2 » Sat May 29, 2010 11:51 pm

Sweep, very nice stuff! Great music can be made with almost any synth, given the right musician.

I spent some time today watching v-synth clips on youtube. It has a quality that doesn't quite do it for me. But clearly it inspires you. 8)

alamilla
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by alamilla » Sun May 30, 2010 5:18 am

I for one would like to see Korg and Roland come out with some real analogue products and go back to their roots.
But with limited market appeal and digital synthesis being significantly cheaper to manufacture I don't see that coming down the road anytime soon.

They have released the Monotron and SH-01 Gaia respectively which I was surprised to see and am a big fan of, but I'd love if they just kicked it up a notch.


For me, if Roland came out with an updated TR-808/909, true-to-the-original machine, I think I'd wet myself.
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Mr Arkadin
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by Mr Arkadin » Sun May 30, 2010 6:50 am

Sweep wrote:This is slightly off topic for analog, of course, but every time I hear anybody say Roland have lost it and haven't done anything good for a decade or two I shake my head in disbelief.

I've had a V-Synth XT since they first appeared, and I've done amazing things with it, expecially when using its ability to use samples as waveforms.
Obviously directed at me. Well I shake my head because the counter argument is always the V-Synth. The V-Synth seems to be only other thing of worth they seem to have done (other than the previously mentioned V-Piano) in a while. Soundwise I liked the idea more than the results. I can't really define it but it just doesn't do it for me. It's probably the only Roland synth of any interest though in recent years. I think what is bad is the way they use their legacy (Juno, JP, SH) on products that are nowhere near as good as the instruments they take their names from. The JP-8000 was OK, but my JP-4 sounds far better. The SH-01? Seems OK might even get one for live work but I'll be keeping my SH-09. The Juno-G and -D? Just S&S workstations. Good bang for the buck (which is probably how Roland equate the Juno name) but not really amazing.

And no - I'm not some '70s/'80s analogue freak - I have '90s digital synths (JD-800/990) too. I'm not adverse to new ideas, it just seems the V-Synth was there one new idea for a long while. That's not a criticism by the way - they probably sell shedloads of new Junos so their business model is what they want it to be - they just don't do it for me anymore that's all, although they obviously did for a long time.
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EricK
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by EricK » Sun May 30, 2010 12:25 pm

No MC said the same thing awhile back which is what I thought Sweep was referring to.

I really don't agree with that either because not only are their (now discontinued) VS Studios an excellent tool for people who don't want to convert to the pc world (theres something to be said about multi-tracking machines), the ROland stuff has always been better than the Tascam and especially Fostex, though more expensive. The Fantom series workstations (either X or G series...take your pick) are fabulous sounding keyboards for things like drums strings horns, synths and various piano sounds. If you think that none of these products are any good then I am eager to learn what products has Roland released that you are comparing them to.

Roland V Drums, mainly the td20 series are absolutely marvelous. Anyone that has played on those hard plastic wrist killing pads of the past knows what Im talking about. THe stick response of those mesh heads is superior to that of a skin, and the abillity to play almost completely silent, coupled with some of the best sounding drum samples makes any trapkit purist raise an eyebrow.

I will say though that they have produced a lot of crap too. I don't care WHAT Demon Dan says, the D Beam is a useless 5 inch light sensor that is a good concept, never properly implemented on any of their units. Simply put, its just a bell or whistle that doesn't really give you the level of control over a parameter that you think it would because the range of the sensor is too compact. If you apply it to an audio source you get a zippering effect that ruins the quality of their audio sample. Basically, the D Beam is not practical for anything, especially when other assignable controls and pads exist on the same unit. Its just for flash and doesn't add to the value of any of their products.

I haven't been impressed with a lot of their synths like the various juno .....maybe Im spoiled with the Voyager. THeir xv88 though is NICE. DIgital synthesis might not be your thing, but this one sure is nice, especially to have a synth with a hammer weighted keyboard.

I own the Cube 30 and it is a really good bass amp. I have played with guys who have used many of the KC series amps, and for small speakers they belt out sound. THe 550 is a very nice sounding amp and my father owns the 880. These are fantastic amps. Their Jazz Chorus Amps are wonderful for clean guitar tones (if you like that).

In conclusion, if Im looking for a particular type of product, I go with Roland. Their stuff is high quality, from multitrackers and beat production, to Amps and especially their drums, they really make some high quality gear. For a company similar to Yamaha, who makes everything from 4 wheelers and motorcycles to musical instruments, I think it says something for a company to have such a huge and varied product line and still manage to put out quality stuff. There are some companies out there that make only 1 product and do so badly. So I have to say that to make the comment that Roland hasn't made anything good in the last two or three decades is being a bit unfair, but I respect their opinion.

Eric
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Mr Arkadin
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Re: Should Roland and Korg get back in the analog market?

Post by Mr Arkadin » Sun May 30, 2010 2:27 pm

I think people are misunderstanding me. First off Roland kit does not sound bad - I never said it did. I also own digital synths so I'm no analogue purist. What I am saying is that for instance the ideas (and sounds in a lot of cases) that are in my JD synths (and JVs) have been recycled for the Fantom, XVs etc. countless times. OK they will have more sounds but is it enough to entice me to buy any of their new products? No. The V-Synth is one of the few things that I think offers something I haven't already got covered, but all those workstation sounds I have enough of thank you. More innovation like the V stuff wouldn't go amiss.

All I am saying is that for someone as into Roland as I am that they have gone in one direction and I have gone in another and somewhere after 1993 they lost me as a customer. Also I said they hadn't done much of note post JD-990 (obviously again for me), I never said they hadn't done anything good in that time (and that's only 17 years not three decades). I realise not all these comments were directed at me but I just want to clear up my position.

And yes, Roland stuff is generally very well made, I wouldn't have so much of it (and still working) if it wasn't.
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