1U Rack ROMpler

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1U Rack ROMpler

Post by AudiosEnvy » Thu Aug 16, 2007 11:15 pm

Well, I have most of my other grounds covered now and it's time to get a good all around rack ROMpler. I can only give up one sapce in my rack for it though. What would be the best all around 1U rack ROMpler no more than $300?

I was thinking of an expanded Roland JV880 or one of the EMU Series.
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Post by Windreaper » Thu Aug 16, 2007 11:43 pm

Roland XV-5050 would be a great utility rompler but it's slightly over your budget (I'd stretch it just to get one). For 300$ or under, I'd say Korg TR Rack (not much experience with EMU modules), weak pianos but otherwise very good.

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Post by Yoozer » Fri Aug 17, 2007 12:33 am

Seconding the TR-Rack, it's got some beautiful pads in there (but it's impossible to edit using the front panel).

The newer E-mus shouldn't be that bad, though; I think I'd prefer it over a JV880.
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Post by steveman » Fri Aug 17, 2007 12:37 am

Awkward 1/2 rack I know but the XV-2020 is the kid brother of the 5050. Only downside is only stereo outs, and front panel editing sucks.

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Post by Yoozer » Fri Aug 17, 2007 12:42 am

But thankfully there's USB and a proper editor (instead of the trial-version of SoundDiver that refused operation on anything else than Windows whatever) to make up for that. ;)
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Post by AudiosEnvy » Fri Aug 17, 2007 2:17 am

I might just pick up the TR-Rack or if I can spare an extra 1U I might get a Jv10 or 2080.

Does the TR-Rack still sound good for it's age? Is it versatile enough?

As for the XV-5050, if I can find one for a good deal, I'll pick that up.
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Post by Automatic Gainsay » Fri Aug 17, 2007 5:13 am

Versatile ROMpler? Isn't that a bit of a oxymoron? Why not just get a synthesizer if you're looking for versatility?
P.S. The TR rack is a great ROMpler.
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Post by 23 » Fri Aug 17, 2007 8:41 am

Automatic Gainsay wrote:Versatile ROMpler? Isn't that a bit of a oxymoron? Why not just get a synthesizer if you're looking for versatility?
P.S. The TR rack is a great ROMpler.
AG, no offense man, but you're comment doesn't make any sense.
I could make a bunch of comments as to why, but this time around, I just figured I'd go from the angle of a picture is worth a thousand words. Please man, keep all the below in mind when you think of your comments in regard to ROMplers in the future.

THE PROTEUS 2000 (1U RACK UNIT)

Image


6 Stage Envelopes; each stage capable of positive OR negative values (3 available).

Image



2 LFOs AVAILABLE (can be tempo synced) With the Available Shapes:

Image



24 available patch slots:

Image

(Some examples of available Modules available for patching)
Image

Image
(yes, that's right, that's 60 some odd total destinations available.....
topped off with 36+ sources)


AVAILABLE FILTER(s):
Image

(Some examples of available filter types)
Image



I got lazy and didn't bother with the JV or XV that were mentioned.....
The Proteus 2000 falls in the $300 bracket. The 1000 can be had for less, but suffers a big hit in the filtering option area and also takes (to a lesser degree) in the semi-modular options area.

Far as just being used for simple things like Pianos and what not, there's an ample amount of ROMs available for both the JV, XV, and Proteus line.

Now, obviously I didn't go over the whole architecture of 2000 here....and yet, even with what I offered, I think just about anyone can see that'd it be insane to say it's not versatile. AG, please, mark what you are saying with at least some logic based comments behind it in the future. I've said before, and I'm just pointing out again, I think you can be pretty misleading in regard to what things can do (when they aren't analog).

That all said, nothing against you (you're actually one of my favorite contributers in this place); just please calm down with the knock anything that isn't analog comments without at least substantiating what you're saying.
Last edited by 23 on Fri Aug 17, 2007 12:57 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Post by i_watch_stars » Fri Aug 17, 2007 9:53 am

Come now, lets not have yet another ROMpler flame-fest...

Every true synthesist knows that so-called "ROMplers" (sample based synthesizers) are synthesizers too, in the formost sense of the word. Back on topic...

I would repeat the Korg TR rack and the Proteus 2000. I'm pretty sure the Proteus has more programmability (it inherets the Emu's crazy filters among other things) but worse quality presets, and the TR rack is the opposite. There are TR racks on eBay right now for 299$ (coincidence?).

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Post by 23 » Fri Aug 17, 2007 10:24 am

i_watch_stars wrote:Come now, lets not have yet another ROMpler flame-fest...

Every true synthesist knows that so-called "ROMplers" (sample based synthesizers) are synthesizers too, in the formost sense of the word. Back on topic...

I would repeat the Korg TR rack and the Proteus 2000. I'm pretty sure the Proteus has more programmability (it inherets the Emu's crazy filters among other things) but worse quality presets, and the TR rack is the opposite. There are TR racks on eBay right now for 299$ (coincidence?).
Oddly, the TR is the least programmable (least versatile) in regard to what has been mentioned.

Now this is going from memory, but, forget about the 4 waveslots (essientially 4 oscs) and bang that down to 2 available per patch.
You do still have 3 EGs and two LFOs; it falls short of all the waveshapes for LFOs that the Proteus offers, and I believe even the JV/XV, but steps up above the JV/XV in regard to stages offered in the envelopes (think it ran with 6, like the PRot).

In regard to filtering options, it falls below JV, XV, and Prot. Pretty much just 12 or 24db multimode (Low Pass, Band, and High) filters are available.

A single wave slot on the XV literally equals how many waveslots the TR has period (XV offers a left and right slot PER slot).

In short, the TR sort of goes with Yamaha's philosophy, which is to shoot for a moderately programmable piece (though I'd say Yamaha's Motifs cut things down to being even more simple than the TR)

In someways I'd put the TR above the Proteus in regard to acoustic emulations and what not. The biggest point coming from the fact that one is probably going to ultimately want to put more than one ROM into a Prot to cover their bases, and well, that's going to be a costly affair.
The Composer ROM, which the 2000 came stocked with, covers a lot of generalities, but a lot of what it covers it does simply an "O.K." job with at best (which can be said of any ROMpler to a large degree). I'd say the XV probably does the best here, with a lot of that being with simply how much the SRX cards are able to hold.

I'd say the JV/XV, though in a different way, rival the 2000 in regard to programmability, however, unlike the 2000, they aren't of a modular nature. So you have a TON of modulation options and what not, but they are all hard set. You can also vary the architecture to a degree via Structs, but again, even these are hard set, you can merely select between them.

The key word I saw with the original poster was "versatile", which to me brings to mind programmability. The JV, XV, and Proteus (even a 1000) all fitting pretty well into that realm.
If one is just looking for a simple preset machine that's versatile in regard to the presets offered, the doors spread wider; and I think the TR arguably has a fitting in such a place. Might want to consider the Kurzweil ME-1 as well in this regard.

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Post by 23 » Fri Aug 17, 2007 12:18 pm

O.K., just one more deal here (as one can tell, this subject is a bit of pet peeve of mine), I thought I'd do a side by side comparison of the Synth II (as it's one of my more simplistic synths and reflects the much hailed Model D and Voyager in a number of ways) and something like the Korg TR.

Timbrality:
Synth II: Single/Mono
TR: 16 part

Number of voices:
Synth II: 1
TR: 16 (If I remember correctly; and I'm assuming both wave slots are consistently in use)

Number of Osc Per voice:
Synth II: 3 + White Noise Gen.
TR: 2

Waveforms Available per Osc:
Synth II: Triangle, Saw, Square (with width available on Osc 3)
TR: Sine, Triangle, Saw, Square and probably a 100+ more

Number of capable Synth Stacks:
Synth II: 0 (it is a mono synth)
TR: arguably 32 (being that each wave slot can function as it's own independent synth....one patch can function as a single synth stack)

Filter Types Available:
Synth II: 24db/4pole Resonant Low Pass (capable of Self Oscillation)
TR: 12db and 24db Multi-mode Resonant Filter (Low Pass, Band, High)

Filter Key Tracking Available:
Synth II: Yes
TR: Yes

LFOS:
Synth II: 2
TR: 2

LFO Waveshapes:
Synth II: Triangle, Saw, Square (on Lfo1), Sample and Hold (on Lfo2)
TR: Triangle, Saw, Square, Sample and Hold, Sine

LFO Routing Capabilities:
Synth II: Filter, Amp, Pitch (Osc 1 and 2)
TR: Filter, Amp, Pitch

EGs:
Synth II: 2 positive value ADSR (filter and amp); up to 4 if LFOs are placed into one shot mode

TR: 3 AADDRR envelopes (filter, amp, and pitch); two capable of positive or negative values, one (amp) of only positive values

FM capablity:
Synth II: Osc 3 can modulate Osc 1 and Osc 2 (if they aren't being modulated by an LFO)
TR: None

Ring Modulation:
Synth II: Osc 1 can be Ringmoded with Osc 2; Osc 2 can be ring modded with Osc 3
TR: None

Osc Sync:
Synth II: Osc 2 can be slaved to Osc 1
TR: None

Filter FM Available:
Synth II: Yes (if filter is not being modulated via LFO)
TR: None

Amp Velocity Sensitive:
Synth II: Yes
TR: Yes

Filter Velocity Sensitve:
Synth II: Yes
TR: Yes

Aftertouch control:
Synth II: No
TR: Yes

Modulation Wheel Control:
Synth II: Yes (single paramater only. Filter)
TR: Yes (above single paramater only, but forget how many)

Hands On Control:
Synth II: Tons (almost every single paramater covered)
TR: Few




That all said, can the TR match up to the Synth II in all areas? Nope, it falls short in a few. Can the Synth II match up to the TR in all areas? Nope, it falls short in a few areas (way short in a couple). But at the end of the day, I'd actually say that the extreme amount that the TR shoots up in tonal sources ultimately makes the TR the more sonically versatile. However, if boiled down to just basic waveforms, it still gives the Synth II a run for it's money.....and this is a pretty darn basic ROMpler were dealing with here.
Now coming to things like sound of filters and all that, that's all subjective stuff. I'm looking at things from a depth of programming point of view only. Now, when this is what a pretty basic ROMpler offers up, for someone to comment that ROMplers are these stale incapable things and then turn to other analogue synths that really only offer up just about equal or even less programming depth and state that they are versatile really makes no sense.

That all said, I think I've thrown up enough logic to back my stance here.
And I'll now back off of my pet peeve.

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Post by AudiosEnvy » Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:58 pm

Automatic Gainsay wrote:Versatile ROMpler? Isn't that a bit of a oxymoron? Why not just get a synthesizer if you're looking for versatility?
P.S. The TR rack is a great ROMpler.
Are you serious? Is this guy serious?

Thanks for the replies to everyone else.
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Post by hearttimes » Sat Aug 18, 2007 12:05 am

1010?

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Post by Automatic Gainsay » Sat Aug 18, 2007 12:59 am

AudiosEnvy wrote:
Automatic Gainsay wrote:Versatile ROMpler? Isn't that a bit of a oxymoron? Why not just get a synthesizer if you're looking for versatility?
P.S. The TR rack is a great ROMpler.
Are you serious? Is this guy serious?

Thanks for the replies to everyone else.
As was the case before, this disagreement is based in a misinterpretation of the term "ROMpler," which I explained in the last epic battle over this topic.

When the term "ROMpler" arose, it was a derogatory term used by musicians and NOT by companies to describe synthesizers which were like samplers but did not allow sampling. They were designed to be primarily preset synths which emulated other instruments, used samples (not just single sampled waveforms... synths that use sampled waveforms usually fall under different categories like "hybrid" or "wavetable" etc.) as a tone source, allowed no or very little realtime control, and had a programming interface which was likely to dissuade anyone from trying to create new sounds with it. They were basically sampled sounds in a box.

If you do not agree with this description, or do not remember when it was used in this way, AND believe ROMplers to be defined by anything which uses a sampled waveform, sampled sounds, or digital oscillators, of course you're going to think my statement wrong. A lot of people seem to be using "ROMpler" for any synth with a sampled waveform... which doesn't make any sense. Look at the word "ROMpler..." "ROM" has replaced "SAM" from the word "Sampler." Why would they do that, unless it was to suggest that the device is like a sampler, but using ROM instead of RAM. Using ROM instead of RAM makes it a worthless device from a sampling standpoint, and hence the term was derogatory. It was like having a sampler with presets that you couldn't change. It was not a friendly comparison... it was a mockery. And why was it a mockery? Because the devices originally termed "ROMpler" were not very effective or powerful synthesizers, not as good as samplers, and really only good at being preset-based devices.

Before everyone feels slighted or condemned, or belittled, or any of that stupid bullshit, most of the synths you seem to consider to be ROMplers that you're ardently defending don't fall into the definition I'm holding to... and are actually very capable and popular synthesizers with great control, sound, and functionality.
So, if you're offended and outraged by my previous post, the problem lies in our varied perceptions of the term "ROMpler," and not in anything else. If you think the Trinity or the Triton or any number of other synths whose design was really to provide recognizeable presets over synthesis opportunity are great synthesizers and want to defend those, then I could see why you'd be peeved... otherwise, you're likely lumping your great synthesizer under a term which didn't originally define it.

As for the TR, it's quite lame in regard to being a synthesizer... just like any other "synthesizer" whose main intent was to provide the user with easy presets that sounded like other instruments. But that's what ROMplers are FOR. They are SOUND MODULES, and not (usually, or originally) designed to be full-on synthesizers or samplers. As a ROMpler, the TR provides a lot of diverse sounds, and has some very useable sample-based sounds. I had one for years and found a lot of use in some of the presets.
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Post by Automatic Gainsay » Sat Aug 18, 2007 1:09 am

23 wrote:AG, please, mark what you are saying with at least some logic based comments behind it in the future. I've said before, and I'm just pointing out again, I think you can be pretty misleading in regard to what things can do (when they aren't analog).

That all said, nothing against you (you're actually one of my favorite contributers in this place); just please calm down with the knock anything that isn't analog comments without at least substantiating what you're saying.
23, your disagreement with me comes from two sources:
1. We differ on the definitions of the term "ROMpler." You believe it to define a vastly larger number of useable synthesizers than I do. You believe it to be defined as any synth with sampled waveforms. I do not. It's name is not logical if it is to be applied to all sampled-waveform synths.
2. You think everything is to do with analog with me, which it patently is not. I said nothing about analog here, and an analog synth couldn't be more off topic in this thread.

Mostly, I'm not knocking anything. ROMplers, as they were originally defined, were not something to be defending or decried; any more than a preset organ. They have their place... but their place is not where they are being compared to synthesizers (and I do not mean analog synthesizers, which are in many ways less powerful than a lot of ROMplers) which give the user more control than they do.

If neither of these posts contain the logic you seek, then there isn't much more I can say, 23. :)

P.S. Substantiating what I'm saying is what has landed me in hot water before... the same way it has landed you in hot water.... we're too wordy.
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