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User Review

songboy's review - Roland D-110

This is just the rack synth edition. There is no keyboard attached, you have to get a midi controller to use this device. There are several audio 1/4" outs, and Midi in/out/thru. Yes, you can edit this via a computer by using a program called "MidiQuest XL." Its a great program that makes using older gear like this one so much easier. As for controllers, it is all midi and has the general midi controls (pitch, modulation, sustain....) you will just need a midi controller that is capable of generating those midi messages. There are quite a few sounds on this unit especially because I own three expansion cards for it as well. They are wide ranging in style but they all have that unmistakable late 80's early 90's character. Yes they can be edited as well as stacked up to 8 separate sounds to create one big sounding patch. It has 32 voice polyphony.


Without the use of MidiQuest XL, no, the sounds and effects editing is not easy, at least not by today's standards. The configuration appears to be simple at first glance but navigating through patches and editing just about anything on here can be a real pain in the but. It took me over an hour to feel comfortable with the small task of changing the patch, seriously. I have recently got the manual and have been doing my best to read/understand it, but Roland is notorious for writing awful manuals (in my opinion, the worst was Roland VS1880) so its not going as well as I would have hoped.


Realistic? Heck no. But that's not the point. I bought this unit because I wanted some older sounds from that era. I love to run old synths like there through some of my really nice effects (moog stuff, diamond, analog man). The combination has always yielded some amazing results. The touch sensitivity and after touch seem to be close enough if not right on to today's standards. No conversion that I am aware of. The effects are good. They compliment the sounds in the keyboard good enough, but I find myself rarely using them as I prefer the analog effect route. As for sounds, all the piano patches are pretty lame, they certainly get used if I need a cheesy piano sound, but they are so far away from anything useful if you want a real piano sound. Other than that, I love all the weird, cheesy, "crappy" sounds that come out of this thing.


What I love most about this unit is the sounds. If you need a tone from the late 80's early 90's, then look no further (actually, if you can find one, definitely get the bigger brother of this unit the D 50). With the three expansion cards, I have so many great sounds to choose from. What I don't like about this unit is the learning curve. This thing is a real pain to get comfortable with and the manual isn't as good of a help as it should be. Be willing to spend a whole day with this unit before you expect to make great sounds with it (maybe even more time than that). I paid $75 for this unit. I am very happy with that price. If you expect this thing to sound "real" than it would get a 4 out of 10. If you want this thing with the understanding that it is in no way "real" than I give it a 9 out of 10 for sound and quality. I have owned a few digital synths and this one has the most character of them all. Yes, I would definitely pick this up again if I had the chance.