upgrading to SC...anyone who have owned SC and XV/JV?

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upgrading to SC...anyone who have owned SC and XV/JV?

Postby wolfier » 04:10, 11 January 2010

I've performed a search and haven't found some definite answer - so if my question belongs to some FAQ, I apologize in advance.

I've been a long time user of Roland JV/XV series as preset machines, and the all sound great. I could hear and mentally quantify the slight difference between the JV-1010 sound and the JV-2080 sound (both I used to own).

The XV-2020 was a small step ahead of the JV-2080, which I could also recognize by listening. I could also hear the tiny difference between the XV-3080 and an XV-2020, but not as much as what's between a 1010 and 2080.

However, I remember not being able to hear any difference at all, nor have formed any preference, between the XV-3080 and an XV-5080 which I don't own (I don't use COSM effects much, my music doesn't use guitars.)

So, my next question is - did hardware synths get so good that any synthesized acoustic instruments produced post-2001 sounded realistic enough, and that any preference is made due to personal taste? I'm thinking whether to upgrade to a Sonic Cell, given that there's no hope the XV is going to get Windows 7 support.

The SonicCell from what I read is sort of a table-top version of the Fantom-XR without sampling, with less outputs, no digital out (but I assume the digital audio can be recorded via USB, so it shouldn't be a big deal to me), but the synthesizer is still intact (so new patches can be created from waveforms) and with a USB ASIO 2.0 sound interface built-in. In a sense, it is not unlike what Roland had done before with the Edirol SC-D70.

Given that I'm mostly going to use it as a preset machine, am I going to hear a difference between an XV-3080 and a Sonic Cell? If so, how big is the gap? I haven't had a chance to run into any owner or a store that has it on display for me to compare side-by-side.

However, I doubt I'll recognize the difference very well given that the XV-5080 uses the same XV engine as the first Fantom, which I hear was rehashed 2 times and made its way into the Fantom-X.

Is my doubt unfounded? Thanks, especially if you have heard all of them - I want to hear from you!
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Re: upgrading to SC...anyone who have owned SC and XV/JV?

Postby javaj_ » 18:17, 24 January 2010

The SC is more like the Fantom X engine, with some new waveforms from the G- and the D/A from the G. So a hybrid of the X and G (without the sampling of course). Now if you are looking for a patch machine- the SC will do the job when you put 2 SRX boards in- but you could also get more patches with 5080 and maxing out all boards as well. The SC is a nice unit for what you are looking for and has a very nice sound to it.
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Re: upgrading to SC...anyone who have owned SC and XV/JV?

Postby wolfier » 16:48, 1 February 2010

I've got the Sonic Cell and very happy with it. The internal waveforms are of very high quality - I'm delighted to find that the default piano patch sounds better than that in the Session board and in the Ultimate Keys SRX - but then my most recent experience with Roland's waveforms were the XV-3080, so I haven't used the Fantom S and X extensively.

The real surprise was after installing the Complete Orchestra SRX - even though it's a collection of older SR-JV80 boards the strings are supposed to be very, very good. However I'm finding that the built-in strings are also up there, some even better than their Complete Orchestra SRX equivalent.

The only downside is that it doesn't have arrow keys, but I can live with that, doing most of my sequencing through a computer anyway.

Also, I've only been able to use it as a midi instrument with Cubase AI 4 (after downloading the instrument txt files). Is there anything I have to do to make its VSTi visible under Cubase AI 4?
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Re: upgrading to SC...anyone who have owned SC and XV/JV?

Postby javaj_ » 20:40, 1 February 2010

The Editor is the program you need- it is a VSTi. Now, I think there are some issues wtih Cubase- but maybe not your version.
Add a VSTi instrument track and you should be able to run the Editor.
Also, you can route the audio BACK into your DAW through the USB audio (which is a nice little trick to make it into a full fledged VSTi dongle).
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Re: upgrading to SC...anyone who have owned SC and XV/JV?

Postby rpeatfield » 07:46, 4 February 2010

If you have Cubase forget it, the VST does not work.
Roland Support in the US know about the issue but don't really care and are completely unresponsive (I would say clueless but maybe that's a bit harsh)
Fortunately, there is a thread in UK forum that is tracking this (Roland Support in the UK seem to actually care about customers) and hopefully Roland will fix the VST issue.

So, if you use Cubase I would wait and see if Roland actually fix the problem before you dive in...

If you don't use Cubase then it's a pretty nice sounding box.
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Re: upgrading to SC...anyone who have owned SC and XV/JV?

Postby raisindot » 20:07, 15 February 2010

I've owned a whole string of Rolands synths, moving from June 106 to the XP-30 to the XV-3080 to the XV-5080 and now to the Sonic Cell. I've sold off all the others along the way except for the 5080.

I honestly only bought the SC because I got it new for $400 at a Guitar Center sale. I use it only as a sound source--have no use for its sampling or playback features. Although it feels cheap and I hate the interface, I really do feel that many of its its internal sounds, particularly the pianos, keyboards, guitars and basses, are much warmer and better sounding than those of the 5080. I also do like the Roland editing software. As such, I've found myself using the SC as my primary composing sound source and rarely use my 5080 (or my Motis XS rack) these days. The only reason I'm not quite ready to sell my 5080 is because of its 4 SRX slots and its ability to play the SR/JV cards. I use the SR/JV-17 "Country" card more than any other card and the SRX-08 "World" combination is missing many of the key SR/JV-17 waveforms I've always used.

Jeff
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