The Roland JP-8 matches those expectations. Much more significant than a paperback, using the smallest potential controls, perfect for the elastic hands of this youthful, lively Smartphone generation. Battery-powered for creating music on the move, together with an optional mini-keyboard, the JP-08 is the gist of programmable, stylish, contemporary desktop synths. Keep reading Fidlar to see our Roland Jp-08 Reviews.
Table of Contents
Roland Jp-08 Review
- Effects: Delay
- Step Sequencer: 16 steps, 16 pattern
- Nominal Input Level: INPUT jack: -0 dBu
- Display: 7 segments, 2 characters (LED)
- PHONES jack: Stereo miniature phone type
- OUTPUT jack: Stereo miniature phone type
- INPUT jack: Stereo miniature phone type
- MIDI (IN, OUT) connectors
- USB port: MicroB type (Audio, MIDI)
- Rechargeable Ni-MH battery (AA, HR6) x 4
- Alkaline battery (AA, LR6) x 4
- Current Draw: 500 mA (USB bus power)
- Dimensions: (W x D x H) 11-13/16 x 5-1/16 x 1-13/16″ (300 x 128 x 46mm)
- Weight (including batteries): 2 lbs. 3 oz. (970 g)
- Accessories: Owner’s Manual, Leaflet “USING THE UNIT SAFELY,” Alkaline battery (AA, LR6) x 4
- Options (sold separately): Keyboard unit: K-25
- Shipping Weight: 3 lbs
- Shipping Dimensions: 14 x 7 x 3 in
- Sonically superb.
- A few studio integration annoyances.
- Huge Synth. Small Package.
- Hands-On Control
- New Sound-Shaping Options
- USB Audio Interface for Direct Recording into Your DAW
- Develop Your Ideas with a 16-Step Sequencer
Sound In A Box
An individual may ask why you require a box such as this when you’re able to create exactly the very same sounds on your PC. Nevertheless, the brand new Roland jp 08 releases are, in reality, only software in containers digital emulations of the first electronic equipment.
The purpose is that a box with the ideal buttons, knobs, and sliders creates the encounter of audio exploration tactile and instant.
Additionally, in this era of my multi-purpose devices, there’s just something intriguing about a system that does only one thing, does it nicely, and does not allow you to join Facebook.
The Roland boutique jp-08 is about 30cm around by 12cm heavy and stands a couple of centimeters high. The upper surface and rear plates metal (aluminum, I imagine, given the lightness), and the remaining part of the human body is plastic.
On the back are two full-size interfaces (In & Out), 3x 3.5millimeter jack sockets (Audio Out and Telephones ), a little volume rotary, a USB Micro B outlet, and a power switch.
There’s also a Kensington lock socket if you would like to tie the jp08 Roland down for safety reasons. The bottom of this unit includes a few strange moldings, presumably for fitment into the K-25m.
There’s also a little speaker 3cm in diameter, behind which sits a 16 pin slot to attach to the above keyboard. Oh, and there’s a battery compartment that houses 4x AA cells.
I must wonder which kind of synth user will call for this type of puny speaker, particularly attached to a machine made to replicate among those biggest-sounding synths ever.
In practice, it lacks a lot concerning thickness and quality with almost zero bass reaction. I tried it and never used it. I assume that the inclusion of batteries and a speaker is intended to appeal to the hipster millennial, distressed to make their songs on the move.
I want to be enlightened concerning this speaker’s sensible use since I could think of not one. The usage of batteries has its advantages, and one advantage in particular, which I’ll return to later.
What would have been nice to have is a little, built-in kick rack so the unit may sit beneath a desk and have controls readily observable.
And guess what? Roland’s idea of this, and also you can, at extra cost, get another accessory dock, the DK-01, with such something constructed in! I can listen to the cash tills a-ringing.
There’s a little lipgloss running the width of this device in the front with a tiny socket on one side and a sprung lever on the opposite.
All these are to Find and fix the device in situ inside the K-25m or even DK-01. However, for those of use with no attachment, together with the miniaturized form variable, we must put our heads directly over the device to observe that the nomenclature.
In terms of the surface, well, it’s adorned with many sliders, a couple of rotary pots, plus a series of illuminated buttons that the magnitude of tactics (similar to miniature Fox’s Glacier Mints, but I am carrying the confectionary based analogies a little too much!).
If you envision the Jupiter 8 design, divide it in half and then put those two halves on top of the other, you’ve got the design of this Roland jp08, which has a comfortable feel to it.
But that is where the similarity ends. Each slider includes a 20mm throw from 1 extreme to another. Additionally, they each attribute an orange LED and relatively pointless step traces on either side.
With 20mm, it’s nigh on impossible to find any precision based on those surface markings. Everything is carried out by ear. The rotaries are delegated to waveform choice or oscillator tuning.
If you’ve got four of these close together, all those people with fat fingers begin to get somewhat frustrated with knocking different things.
The eight small switches that finish the tactile features are tiny and do not have a sense of strength about them. There’s also a two-digit LED panel in the center that’s primarily utilized to display patch amounts.
Eventually, to the left are just two ribbon sliders instead of pitch bend and modulation wheels. These both have lively LED lights to the right of every strip that reveals whereabouts your finger is pressing scale.
When not attached to a MIDI device, the Pitch Bend ribbon pops up as a notice input, shifting the scale the farther up the strip you move.
Similar to the speaker can’t envisage where any ordinary musician may find this helpful. When it’s being utilized as a pitch bend, it’s a severe failing there also.
You see bodily pitch bend wheel centers using a spring mechanism. ItIts always in the middle, and a push-up or down will bend the noise correspondingly.
However, with this particular ribbon, you need to guess where the centers trust me; it’s not a specific science. Each time I used it, as soon as I put my finger on it, the notice immediately dropped or increased because my finger had not landed dead center.
This became very frustrating for regular usage and, similar to the speaker, was shortly avoided like the plague.
One intriguing thing about the Boutique range is they each feature a sound port. This is a valuable item. Or at least it would have been had it thrown up a critical defect in the internal design.
Primarily I think it’s a fantastic idea to construct a sound port in these things. It conserves having an excess box attached, particularly helpful for laptop-based music transfer.
Nonetheless, it is of no use if it creates the most annoying hum in the audio course! Entirely only, if you join the JP 08 into the USB of your personal computer, the device emits a too bothersome, high-pitched buzz from the sound.
This buzz is present on the critical audio output in addition to the cans. It leaves them reasonably useless unless the audio thrives on this type of item (Gescom, Autechre, anybody?).
I could not live with this whatsoever, and this is the point where the battery power choice comes in handy, as I alluded to earlier. Had it not been for it, I’d packed the device straight up and returned to Roland HQ.
How in the world can anybody badly embroiled in music manufacturing be pleased with perceptible flaws on the right path? I Googled the matter, and it’s widely reported on the rest of the Boutique units also.
Some individuals suggested purchasing USB cables wrapped on the thighs of their best Geisha Girls at Tokyo, also Roland themselves counsel against using cheap USB charger cables.
Fortunately, I have an assortment of well-made data wires, and not one of them removed this bug. Sothis issue leaves not just the sound interface worthless but also ensures you’ve got to resort to the old fashioned MIDI interfaces.
And thank the artists they are there! When reviewing this product, I needed to use two conventional MIDI cables, four rechargeable batteries, and forego all sound I/O capacities, which makes the simplicity of the thing a small moot point.
And it’s also worth pointing out that the sound coming from the 3.5millimeter jack in the back is rather hot too. Perhaps these things are all linked, possibly not, but it was not an excellent start.
Ultimately, Roland does provide a USB cable with this merchandise. I thought it could have been left from my inspection unit, but it was confirmed that it did not come with you. This was backed up from the instruction sheet, which advised on what type of cable should be used. Quite honestly, if the cable’s standard is so essential, the least Roland can do is furnish one.
Uploading stains into the device is pretty straight forward since the apparatus can be made to appear as a drive in your PC. No matter how the process is somewhat fiddly and requires rebooting of this device.
I had no problems loading in specific third-party patches (Vintage Seems Collection, highly suggested!) And was up and running right away.
Better With A MIDI Controller
A number of the problems above can be solved with Another MIDI controller:
More octaves could be performed right, or octaves can be chosen more easily.
Larger knobs and sliders may be utilized to obtain simpler sweeps and exact parameter input.
The portamento glide time could be corrected using one knob or slider.
The Jupiter-8 grip (sustain) attribute, missing in the JP-08, may be redirected into a button.
The Jupiter-8 arpeggiator, also regrettably missing from the JP-08, could be restored using an arpeggiating controller like the Arturia KeyStep.
Employing another controller surpasses the warmth, but noticed on the bright side, it merely means that you may change between reliability and improved control.
Also lost in the miniaturization were the small orange sign routing hints scattered around the first Jupiter-8 panel:
I didn’t understand them once I received my JP-08. Therefore it was somewhat perplexing. The origin combination knob was the first one that I figured out: It combines both the two oscillators’ just sound sources.
Then there is also routing between the two oscillators. VCO-1 includes across border mod’ slider also VCO-2 includes async’ switch. What is missing from the panel would be that this navigation management (and even that routing is happening, if you do not understand what cross mod or sync way ).
Cross modulation permits the pitch of the VCO-1o is impacted by the pitch of the VCO-2creating crazy bends or new timbres, based upon the frequency of VCO-2.
Sync enables VCO-2 to come back to the beginning of its cycle in the frequency of VCO-1, making new timbres from present waveforms. After figuring out the routing, the JP-08 created a good deal more sense.
Perhaps most troublesome is keeping tabs on what the two envelopes control. ENV-1 can impact both oscillators’ heartbeat, the frequency of both oscillators, and the filter cutoff frequency. ENV-2 controls the VCA and filter frequency. The filter includes a change picking which envelope now controls the filter.
Docking Looks Better
The JP-08 itself is a sturdy metallic panel in addition to a plastic box. In its unmounted form, it seems somewhat bare. Adding the optional K-25m keyboard module helps to finish the expression of the gadget.
Earlier I got the keyboard module; the apparatus appeared somehow cluttered and unfinished in my desk. It makes me grin when I look at it.
So I am glad I have the keyboard module, although it is equally expensive and just mediocre as a computer keyboard. The synth can also dock at the keyboard-less, more economical DK-01 dock to be used mainly using an external keyboard.
To start, it will seem authentic the minute that you get started flicking through the presets. That’s before you start trying to perform over four notes at a time. You see, the JP-08, despite its title and its legacy, is just a four 4-voice synth. Yup. Seriously.
This device, which prides itself on a faithful recreation of a classic eight 8-voice synth, is 50% poorer in the voice section. Who sanctioned this choice? Why in the world did anyone believe this was a fantastic idea?
The moment you find among these traditional pad-type presets and perform with a three-note chord on the ideal hand; you’ve got one note made to play with a root bass note with the left.
Consider doubling that chord up, and notes begin dropping all around the area. It’s disconcerting. And is not that precisely what a Jupiter 8 is all about? Having the ability to play huge layers of audio, enormous analog chords, and chords?
And indeed, the title itself is a misnomer? If this were known as the JP-04, it would have been right. However, I guess that would not sell components.
I guess I am coming across as being too a massive downer with this particular unit, and you’d probably be right. I had high expectations of the, despite understanding the voice restriction, but it is another own goal for me personally.
In terms of manipulating the sounds through the surface, this is not as awful as some people can anticipate. You quickly become accustomed to the controllers’ tiny nature, and you do begin to get very accurate together.
And there’s not any denying the noise is exceptionally authentic. I am very close. However, I found myself hitting on constraints and got the impression that the entire bundle was not as intuitive as the first.
I started to get very frustrated very quickly when using it. I am all working within the constraints of a tool; however, if those constraints spoil the dependence on what’s available, I only feel disappointed by everything.
And here is the disappointing thing. It was not all that long ago that I’d happily like hardware over applications, disregarding the latter because of light and pale imitation of the prior.
Once the JP-08 landed for my critique, Roland started their cloud support, which comprised a Jupiter 8 Twist Out/Plug-In. I signed up myself for this trial and compared Jupiter 8 and the JP-08 module, each of which utilizes the same ACB Modelling technology.
And how the tables have turned. The program Jupiter 8 is also, in virtually every facet, the ideal recreation of the first hardware.
Oh, the way the irony burns! Sure, today, you need to subscribe to the Roland Cloud to receive this or purchase a far more expensive System-8 computer keyboard if you would like a tactile control surface, but it gets near replicating the first.
And to add insult to injury, Roland also indicates that you purchase another JP-08 and string both together to find a precise replication! From the time you’ve completed that, you might as well have saved the extra for your System-8!
The Roland Jp-08 is enjoyable and seems excellent. However, many things feel as they might have been much better with little alterations.
Eight voices, of course. Subsequently, the sliders could have been better with a little gain in the height of this box. A little increase in width might have left space for immediate management of a lot more parameters.
And yet an arpeggiator! And, of course, real diameter keys or even more miniature keys. A standard pitch bend and the mod rod would also be fantastic, but this could make the device deeper.
Last update on 2020-12-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API