Archive for February, 2012

Posted By andrew603

More Retro Style Riffs

Here are a couple more "Faux Chiptune" mixes and a recording of E1M1 from Doom as can be heard using my newly acquired Roland CM-64 with Electric Guitar and Rock Drums expansion sound cards!


Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the MP3!

Mario 3 Hammer Bros. – Faux Chiptune

Castlevania 2 – Mansions – Faux FM

Doom – E1M1 – Roland CM-64!

Posted By andrew603

Dear Roland…

I would love a new amazing Roland Rack-Mount Synthesizer that is a true successor to the XV-5080 or Fantom XR.  My friends and I have written up some specifications for the ultimate Roland synthesizer.

I believe the current direction of the industry beginning to leave hardware MIDI synthesizers/modules behind in favor of crappy software instruments is a mistake.  The quality is not there, the "classic sounds" are not there, and in my opinion the simplicity is not there.

Anyway, the main idea/purpose of the unit is MIDI Performance playback / studio recording, not necessarily live/gigging use.  Essentially this one synthesizer would render about 20U worth or racked MIDI equipment I have redundant by providing a single powerful module that truly replaces that equipment sound for sound and adds new exciting functionality for the future.  I also believe the fantastical specifications listed below are achievable with current technology.  I would expect something like this to have a price point between $3,000 and $5,000, which I would happily pay.

So without further ado, here are the specs:

Roland Expanded Articulation Legacy Synthesizer (3U Rackmount)  "REALsynth" or maybe just Roland Legacy

  • Polyphony:    512 for Roland Legacy Engine;  ARX and RLX Expansions have independent and varying polyphony limits.
    • Roland Legacy Engine handles all XV, Fantom X, SRX, SR-JV80, U-110, and GM/GS sounds in any combination.
  • Effects:
    • Multi-Effects:    32 independent systems, 78 Types;  Chainable: up to 4 MFX per chain (IE: You can have 32 MFX for 32 Channels or 8 channels of MFX chains with 4 MFX each!)
    • Reverb:    3 systems to choose from 12 types total;  GM/GS Reverb Mode (taken from SC-8850), Fantom X Reverb Modes, A third all new Legacy Reverb Mode (Stereo Convolution Reverb)
    • Chorus:    2 systems to choose from 11 types total;  GM/GS Chorus Mode (taken from SC-8850) and Fantom X Chorus Modes
    • Delay:    10 types (Taken from SC-8850)
  • MIDI Channels:    64 for Legacy Engine when no expansions are in use.  Channels will get claimed as needed by each active ARX and RLX expansion instrument.
  • Audio Outputs:    Analog 10 TRS Balanced (5 stereo pairs); Digital: 1 Optical, 1 Coaxial, (44.1,48,88,96Khz)
  • Audio Inputs:    1 XLR, 2 TRS Balanced;  Reverb, Chorus, and Delay can be used.  1 MFX Chain may be offloaded to be used.  (XLR and Left/Mono TRS port can not be used simultaniously)
  • Audio Signal:    24Bit/96Khz (Actual sample frequencies vary depending on original waveform source)
  • Display:    320×120-dot Graphic Backlit LCD (Similar to the great XV-5080 display, I can read it from across the room!)
  • Front Panel Controls:    Preferably similar scheme to XV-5080.  Please no touchscreens, for accessibility reasons!  Roland rack units usually deliver in great controls so I'm not worried here.
  • Storage:    Compact Flash memory card (2 slots), perhaps Optional internal SSD option.
  • USB Modes:    MIDI/Performance Mode, Disk Drive(s) Mode
  • MIDI Ports:    2x In/Out, Thru.  In USB Mode, operate as additional MIDI Interfaces for other devices.
  • RAM:        DDR3 up to 8GB (2 Slots)
  • User Memory:    128 Performances per CF Card Up to 128 Patches in 128 Banks per Card (Shared with Compact Flash Sample Storage)
  • Sampling:    Up to 128 Samples and/or Multi-Samples in 128 Banks per CF Card (Multi-Samples Consume 1 sample space for each sample used, limited by CF Card capacity, shared with User Patch memory)
  • On-Board / Preset Sounds:
    • Roland GM/GS Synthesizer (SC-8850 Soundset)
    • Complete XV-5080 Waveforms & Patches
    • Complete Fantom XR Waveforms & Patches
    • Complete U-110 Sound Library (All Waveforms & Patches, excludes consolidated waveforms from the included  SR-JV80/SRX Romset)
    • Complete SR-JV80 Sound Library (All Waveforms & Patches, excludes consolidated waveforms from the included SRX ROMset)
    • Selected SRX Sound Library:  SRX-01, SRX-03, SRX-04, SRX-06, SRX-07, SRX-09, SRX-10 (All Waveforms & Patches)
  • Expansion Capability:
    • 6 SRX Expansion Slots
    • 4 ARX Expansion Slots
      • New Card: ARX-04 Ultimate Strings
      • New Card: ARX-05 Acoustic Guitar
      • New Card: ARX-06 Electric Guitar
      • New Card: ARX-07 Tonewheel Organ
      • New Card: ARX-08 Vocal Designer (Clone of VC2 Vocal Designer)
    • 4 RLX Expansion Slots (All new Roland Legacy Series Expansion Cards!  Complete Vintage Roland Synthesizers with full SysEx compatibility!  More than one of the same RLX Expansion can be used if desired.)
      • RLX-01:    TR-808
      • RLX-02:    TR-909
      • RLX-03:    TB-303
      • RLX-04:    Jupiter 8
      • RLX-05:    D-50 Linear Synthesizer
      • RLX-06:    MT-32 Multi Timbre Sound Module

As a matter of note, I personally could live without any of the audio input and sampling capability, "The Roland Sound Library" is what I am interested in and love!  Also, if it would be possible to include the entire SRX library on-board in the interest of simplifying the hardware (no need for SRX Slots then), that would be even more awesome!


A Dedicated Roland User

Posted By andrew603

Remix Drafts: Space Quest, Silpheed, and Willy Beamish

Here's some draft version recordings of some remixes I've been working on lately.  Hopefully I will finish them sooner or later!  Enjoy!

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the MP3!

Music From Silpheed – Originally written for my MT-32 from scratch by memory, re-arranged with the Fantom XR and XV-5080.

Willy Beamish Theme – This track uses the Fantom XR, XV-5080, two D-550's and an MT-32!

Space Quest IV – Closing Themes – This track uses the Fantom XR and XV-5080, and is currently using 31 independant midi channels total!  (though not all at the same time… yet!)

Posted By andrew603

Added some new photos and other stuff you may have missed…

I have added a few new photos of my Fantom XR & XV-5080.  Also, if you have not noticed, I am slowly updating the Recording Gear and Synthesizers pages.

I have lots of stuff to post!  It will happen eventually!  🙂

Posted By andrew603

Bouncing Round the Classroom – Remix

My friend Andre composed this piece on his Fantom XR based off a riff he was playing while having some fun with his new Roland SC-88ST Pro using a SYSEX "Preset" I made for my SC-880 (SC-88pro compatible).

Bouncing Round the Classroom (Andre: SC-88ST Pro)

Bouncing Round the Classroom (Andre: Fantom XR)

As promised, here are a couple remixes of it!


Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Bouncing Round the Classroom (Andrew: Fantom XR & XV-5080)

Bouncing Round the Classroom (Andrew: Two MT-32's!)