Review of the
by Rich the TweakMeister
Tweak's #1 Pick!
I have it, I love it, I use it in every song I make. If you can afford only one module this is the one. If you are a pro with a rack of synths but no current Roland synths, this is the one, it gives you the entire JV 2080 sound set plus the session board and one slot to add a board of your choice. This synth is a great way to start up with MIDI. It gives you tons of sounds to make music in a wide variety of styles. It is GM compatible, so you can play MIDIfiles off the internet, or use it to make your own. It works with Logic, Cubase, Sonar and any other sequencer that supports midi bank select.
What I like about this synth:
The sound of this little box is awesome. It's a true Roland, with the same top quality sounds used daily in the industry.
The JV1010 is perfect for remote operation by a computer sequencer. Once you set it up, you never have to touch the controls again. All the patch changing is done from your computer screen.
The session board (hardwired in) has a great, and I mean that, a great acoustic piano that can stand alone or in a mix. Its classic guitar is the most realistic I've heard in any synth and very expressive. The Techno sounds in the JV1010 have controllers routed to filters and resonance. Yes you can do a perfectly articulated sweep by slowly raising Controllers. You can draw the sweep into your sequencer to make it come out the way you want. The filter/ resonance has Teeth! It will bite, growl, tear at your mix (and be careful not to let it tear up your ears). There's an exotic flute that will really drive you to the far east. Massive Orch hits. Outstanding guitar distortion. Great 808/909 kit. Clean drums too, for rock, country, and all the conventionals. It has a thick choir compared to tinny vox's you find elsewhere and its orchestral sounds are quite useable. Add the Orch I expansion board (not included) and you really can get serious. I also really like the classic pads and synth sounds of the Roland D50 and Juno 106, and Super Jupiter. Roland emulated their own vintage gear very nicely! Probably the thing I like most is how well it all blends together into a unique synth personality. The sound quality is excellent. the variety of programs is vast and some are truly inspirational. The factory presets are only the beginning. You can use Sounddiver, which is supplied, to edit and create your own patches. There is tremendous tweaking power here.
What I don't like about this synth
The manual is really not as helpful as it should be. Sometimes newbies read it too close and get confused.
Also you only get one stereo pair of outputs. If you want more you should look at the JV 1080 2080, 3080 5050. The limitation here is if you are wanting to mix the parts on a mixer to eq different parts and add external effects to some instruments and not others. Not possible. You can, however, mix the sounds using the volume controls in your sequencer, and you can assign different internal effects to individual instruments in the mix.
Another issue is that you can only access drums on channel 10. This means you are limited to 1 set per 16 channel multi setup. There's no way to isolate the kick and snare on different channels. Only one free expansion slot. Sometimes I wish the signal was a wee bit hotter. Its perfectly useable, but if it had another 3 db of gain (a tiny amount) I'd be ecstatic. Ok, Ok what do you expect for under 500 bucks. You may have to touch the trims on your board to match louder modules. I do.
Bang for the Buck
You can bet your hard earned cash on this one. I think it is worth every cent. Over 1000 patches of tremendous variety, add a board and you are up to 1,280 Patches! That's 10 MIDI banks!
The compact JV-1010 offers the professional
sounds of the acclaimed JV-2080 at an incredibly affordable price. It also
includes all the sounds from the "Session" expansion board -- including Roland's
most popular stereo grand piano -- and an expansion slot to give users access to
the incomparable SR-JV80 Series sound library.
Net Resources on Expansion Boards
Info plus links at
Info on Expansion Boards at Planet Groove--Cool!