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Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 10:46 pm
by syntheticsolutions
http://i47.tinypic.com/ekenn.jpg

So here she is! The wonderful RS-505 arrived today in a really nice, foam lined, solid metal flight case. (I really think it deserves a fur lining :lol: ) It is in immaculate condition cosmetically and the gloss finish is still super shiny on the face. Some of the sliders feel scratchy however introduce no noise or crackle into the audible spectrum whatsoever. The bottom C key does not seem to work with the bass and synth sounds however fully functions with the lower string sound :? Very strange!

The string sounds are to die for and the advantages of having both bass and string sounds on one keyboard are immediately clear. Once I get the hang of the keyboard, I can see it being a great live synth, a kind of 2 birds one stone trick but without any compromise on tonality.

I am finding it slightly difficult to get the hang of the articulation with this keyboard. When large chords are engaged with a long release and the bass note is changed, the chords suddenly cut out instead of continuing with the release stage. This is avoided if you keep the chords sustained whilst the lower is changed and then release the chords. I do hope this makes sense :oops: The Opus has a similar articulation mode however, you have the opportunity to switch between two different modes (the second being more classic polysynth territory)

I don't even need to mention how pleased I am with the ensemble circuit :o OMFG

Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 11:05 pm
by Bitexion
I think this is a result of running out of polyphony, and the last key you press takes over the voices, cutting out the others. But if you change the bass note while holding the chord, note priority is different. Or something like that.

Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 12:40 pm
by mpa1104
Congrats you lucky sod! Looks like it was worth the wait. I have an RS 202 which gets a great deal of use and I've always thought the 505 would be hugely appealing. It's sound is also all over two of my favourite Mike Oldfield albums, Crises and Discovery.
Feel free to post some demos! :)

Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 5:47 pm
by Micke
I believe the synth strings on the albums Crises and Discovery are the VP-330 rather than a RS-202 or RS-505.

Here's a photo from the back cover of Discovery:

Image
That definitely looks like a VP-330 on the left. The Oberheim system and Fairlight
are visible on the right.

I just watched some live footage from 1980 to 1983 and it looks like they're using the VP-330 for
most of the string sounds and vocoding.

EDIT: Quote from Mike Oldfield:
"..My favorite old string machine, I can't seem to get rid of that thing...it keeps creeping in on everythibg I do"
(source: keyboard magazine, jan 1988).

Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 9:57 pm
by mpa1104
I'll be damned! I know that photo so well, I used to sit and scrutinise the inner sleeve of the Discovery album during its many incessant listenings (obviously not quite enough scrutiny though!). It must just be that gorgeous ensemble effect that had me thinking it was the 505 (I certainly knew there was no 202 anywhere). You must admit though, that the VP and the 505 are cosmetically very similar, particularly with the end cheeks and the panel layout, so I hope my faux pas is forgiven :) (on the other hand, the microphone sitting atop that synth could have been a significant clue, I've also just noticed the extra real estate on the right side of the front panel which the 505 does not have!). Thanks for the clarification Micke

Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 11:25 pm
by Micke
It's allright, you're forgiven mpa :)

And yes, the VP and 505 are cosmetically very similar.

Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 3:17 am
by calaverasgrande
I'll probably take some flak for this but I dont think of the Opus 3 as a string machine.
It's really more of an organ with a higher pitched "horn" sound masquerading as strings.
I like the Arp, Crumar and Solina much better. Havent had the pleasure of a Roland stringer, but I think I need one now!

Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:26 pm
by sam
Congratulations on you great synth purchase ...I also have the 505 and VP330.

If you love the 505 i really think you should recap it....Mine had a lot of leaky caps.

It seems Roland synths from that time suffer from this..It's worth the effort..

Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:37 am
by vespiz
sam wrote:Congratulations on you great synth purchase ...I also have the 505 and VP330.

If you love the 505 i really think you should recap it....Mine had a lot of leaky caps.

It seems Roland synths from that time suffer from this..It's worth the effort..
What sort of symptoms did yours have, may I ask?

Oh and congrats to the OP for the purchase, it's a great synth!

(Got one for free ages ago :2cool: )

Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 10:05 pm
by sam
There was nothing apparently wrong with the 505 but with a synth of this age I always replace the power supply caps when i give it a service.
I noticed quite some caps esp the 220mf and 47mf were leaking...I ended up recapping the whole synth.

There was an improvement in the sound on this one..

Re: Roland RS-505

Posted: Thu Dec 12, 2013 4:05 am
by dluther
sam,

I've had my RS-505 since 1978! It's been in storage since probably the late '80s, but I recently brought it out and found that someone has probably abused it. One of the pots has been broken off and the voicing has a semi-random "squeal".

Are the pots available still (the "R" for the envelope), and do you think re-capping would solve the voice issue?