ROLAND 50TH ANNIVERSARY 1972 - 2022

THANK YOU FOR BEING PART OF THE STORY SO FAR.
HERE ARE SOME OF THE HIGHLIGHTS.

1990

S-770
DIGITAL SAMPLER

The rackmount S-770 supported 16-bit stereo sampling at up to 48kHz, for a polished and crisp sound. Users could adjust the sound via the TVF and TVA (Time Variant Amplifier). The S-770 (and its lower-priced cousin, the S-750, released in 1991) are renowned for their warm sonic presence and are still valued today.

This groundbreaking high-end system created a 3D sound space on a regular stereo device. A standard RSS system comprised four hefty units: a pair of 2U-rack ADA8024 analogue-digital-analogue converters, a 2U rackmount RSS8048 Sound Space Processor, and the SSC8804 Sound Space Controller with eight rotary dials for moving the sound in realtime. Larger systems could link up to 16 processors, and the technology would eventually be heard in some of Roland’s more mainstream products.

JD-800
SYNTHESIZER

1991

HISTORY / STORIES

Sounds of the JD-800

The JD-800 is front and center in this sampling of tracks by legendary artists. Explore these classics and fall in love with the ‘90s again.

FP-8
DIGITAL PIANO

A hammer-action keyboard using weighted hammers and no springs - a design philosophy that has been retained in today’s piano keyboards.

SC-55 SOUND CANVAS
SOUND MODULE

The SC-55 Sound Canvas introduced General MIDI (GM) and General Standard MIDI (GS), meaning that MIDI sequences could be reliably played back on products from any participating manufacturer, much to the relief of frustrated musicians everywhere.

1992

COMPACT DRUM SYSTEM

The world’s first complete MIDI drum kits, built around the TD-7 sound module. With a familiar drum shape and sleek design, the pads allowed easier placement, larger playing surface, and improved triggering sensitivity at lower velocities.

DJ-70

Sampling Workstation

AX-1

Keytar

HP-7700

Digital Grand Piano

JV-80

Multi-timbral Synthesizer

1993

JD-990
MODULE

The JD-990 was a rack module version of the JD-800 with expanded capabilities. As well as ring modulation and oscillator sync, it was equipped with an FXM function and eight multi-effects processors.

JV-1000
WORKSTATION

Roland’s first mainstream workstation, which combined the JV-80 architecture with an MC-50 MkII MIDI sequencer, each with its own control panel.

1994

JV-1080 SOUND MODULE

Nicknamed the Super JV, this 64-voice, 16-part production powerhouse could also accommodate four wave expansion boards, for a total of over 1,700 sounds across a multitude of music genres. As the ‘90s rolled on, JV-1080s could be found in studios and music all over the world.

VIDEO_KUN DESKTOP VIDEO

Only released in Japan, Roland’s first video-related product allowed users to perform sophisticated video editing on their PCs.

RD-500 / DIGITAL PIANO

AT-70 / HOME ORGAN

1995

VG-8 GUITAR
MODELLING SYSTEM

The world’s first modeling guitar system let players create a wide variety of tones on a single guitar. With a GK-2A pickup mounted to your guitar, an amazing array of sounds lay at your fingertips, ready to be explored.

COMPOSITE OBJECT SOUND MODELING

A powerful modeling technology that enabled guitarists to emulate a range of classic and modern guitars, amps, cabinets, and microphones. It could also produce “futuristic” synth-like tones and was flexible enough to feature in other Roland products like V-Drums.

1996

MC-303
GROOVEBOX

Roland’s first entry into the club and DJ scene, the MC-303 quickly became a hit in the dance scene, giving would-be producers everything they needed to start working on their ideas. It was a self-contained unit that combined a micro keyboard, classic Roland sounds, drums, effects and sequencing, brought together in an intuitive front panel.

THE MAGICIAN AND HIS MC-303 WHEN HE WAS YOUNG.

A-90
EXPANDABLE CONTROLLER

The sophisticated 88-note A-90 keyboard offered unsurpassed Roland PA-4 piano feel with channel aftertouch and a comprehensive collection of master controller functions.

VS-880
DIGITAL STUDIO WORKSTATION

The VS-880 was the world’s first truly affordable integrated digital recorder, digital mixer, digital editor and effects processor. Rather than hiring a dedicated studio, musicians could now produce polished high-quality recordings at home, ready to be burned to CD.

JP-8000
ANALOG MODELING SYNTH

Rumored to be the ‘Digital Jupiter’ when in development, this 8-voice synthesizer offered an impressive array of knobs and sliders to manipulate its analog modeling synthesis engine. It had a built-in Motion Control function that allowed operations on the panel to be recorded and played back. It was also the first Roland synth to feature the Supersaw waveform which would become hugely popular in trance music as the decade progressed.

KEBU IN CONVERSATION ABOUT HIS JP-8000 (AND OTHER SYNTHS)

1997

TD-10K
V-DRUMS

The first-ever kit in the V-Drums range, the TD-10K featured mesh drum heads and COSM sound technology, and the kit was highly praised for its natural feel, tone, expression, and ease of use.

JV-2080
SOUND MODULE

The successor to the JV-1080 became so popular, it was considered a world standard. With 640 preset patches, 16 multitimbral parts, and room for eight expansion boards for a total of nearly 3,000 sounds, it represented the pinnacle in sample-playback synthesis at the time.

VK-7
TONEWHEEL COMBO ORGAN

Roland’s first foray into the world of physically modeled stage organs.

1998

DJ-2000

DJ mixer with built-in effects

UA-100

The world’s first USB audio interface

TU-2

Tuner

VS-1680

Digital recording system

MC-505
GROOVEBOX

The MC-505 Groovebox built upon the MC-303’s reputation as a self-contained dance music powerhouse, offering new sounds, more controls, the revolutionary D-Beam light-sensing controller and a MEGAMIX function for realtime live pattern mixing.

TECHNO LUMINARY CRISTIAN VARELA SHOWS HOW HIS CUSTOM PERSPEX MC-505 FITS INTO HIS LIVE SET EVEN TO THIS DAY

1999

VM-7000-SERIES
MODULAR DIGITAL MIXING SYSTEM

The forerunner of Roland’s V-Mixing System of the 2000’s, this flexible pairing of digital mixer and stage boxes also saw the introduction of Roland’s proprietary 8-channel R-BUS digital audio interface.

SC-8850
USB SOUND MODULE

The world’s first USB-enabled MIDI sound source became the standard in the desktop music production category.