Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

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syntheticsolutions
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Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

Post by syntheticsolutions » Thu Nov 22, 2012 3:43 pm

So I have been lusting over these vintage, analogue processing units for some time now.

I am familiar with the SVC-350 Vocoder but I have never heard the other units in action.
I started the first step of the collection last night with the purchase of the SEQ-315 stereo graphic EQ.

Has anyone got any experience, opinions or sound demos to share on these hard to find units?
I plan to grab the Dimension D and the Phase Shifter as soon as the opportunity arrises.

The list of rack units that i have found so far are as follows;

Roland SVP-355 P/V Synthesizer
Roland SVC-350 Vocoder
Roland SIP-300 Guitar Preamp
Roland SIP-301 Bass Preamp
Roland SBF-325 Stereo Flanger
Roland SPH-323 Phase Shifter
Roland SEQ-315 Stereo Graphic EQ
Roland SDD-320 Dimension D Ensemble
Replicants are like any other machine, they're either a benefit or a hazard. If they're a benefit, its not my problem.

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Z
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Re: Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

Post by Z » Thu Nov 22, 2012 3:53 pm

I've had my SVC-350 for over 20 years and it's never leaving. It's THE BEST vocoder for the money. Not too long after that, I picked up at SPH-323 Phaser. One of my very first YouTube videos was a demo of it running my JP-6 through it:
[youtube][/youtube]

I've also got a Dimension D and SPV-355, but neither are set up in my current rig. The SPV is kind of limited, basically a slimmed down ProMars in a rack format. I could have seen it being a useful item to have in a live situation. I borrowed my brother's tromebone and trumpet so I could make a demo video of it, but haven't found the time. Stay tuned! BTW, I'm looking for rack ears for mine if anyone has any leads on where I can find some.

I'm proud of my SVC video. There was no editing involved, just starting and stoping the camera. You can spot a couple of mistakes during the recording, but everyone has positive comments.
[youtube][/youtube]

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syntheticsolutions
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Re: Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

Post by syntheticsolutions » Thu Nov 22, 2012 5:15 pm

Z wrote:
I'm proud of my SVC video. There was no editing involved, just starting and stoping the camera. You can spot a couple of mistakes during the recording, but everyone has positive comments.
I have been watching this demo for years! It is probably the best gear demo on the net, great work :D

I am hoping to grab the phaser and dim D asap.
The phaser seems to be a nice alternative to the mutron bi-phase. Nice having two LFOs with individual rate and mod depth.

Do you know what the chorus is like on the SBF-325 Flanger? I am not that into Flange effects but I do love a good chorus. The thing is, I already have an RE-301, RE-501 and DC-50. I am wondering if the SBF-325 will overlap with my existing gear. The Dimension D is a world apart from the other chorus units.
Replicants are like any other machine, they're either a benefit or a hazard. If they're a benefit, its not my problem.

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Re: Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

Post by Z » Thu Nov 22, 2012 11:13 pm

syntheticsolutions wrote:
Z wrote:
I'm proud of my SVC video. There was no editing involved, just starting and stoping the camera. You can spot a couple of mistakes during the recording, but everyone has positive comments.
I have been watching this demo for years! It is probably the best gear demo on the net, great work :D
Thank you for the kind words.
Do you know what the chorus is like on the SBF-325 Flanger?
Sorry, I have yet to see a SBF in person. The Dim D is nice. It is vert subtle and not your typical "thick" chorus.

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Re: Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

Post by syntheticsolutions » Fri Nov 23, 2012 5:18 am

Z wrote:
Sorry, I have yet to see a SBF in person. The Dim D is nice. It is vert subtle and not your typical "thick" chorus.
It seems that most of the rack units in the series with the exception of the vocoder and dimension D are rather undiscovered or at the least, less popular than competing processing companies alternatives.

I have read that the Dimension D is more of a spatial enhancer than a specified chorus, it sure does appear to be a unique analogue effect! On a slightly un-related note, I just got my SAD512D based multi-chorus working on my Opus 3 and the circuit is a truly outstanding chorus! Extremely rich without sounding like the more commonly used roland circuits. I think I am going to fit an external input mod in the next few weeks.

I would also love to get my hands on a Roland RV-800 Reverb, however, they seem to be as common as rocking horse nuggets! :cry:
Replicants are like any other machine, they're either a benefit or a hazard. If they're a benefit, its not my problem.

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Re: Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

Post by krushing » Fri Dec 07, 2012 9:37 am

Xfer do a free DimD-ish plugin called the Dimension Expander, here. It's pretty nice (for the price!).

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syntheticsolutions
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Re: Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

Post by syntheticsolutions » Thu Dec 13, 2012 12:31 am

Z wrote:I've had my SVC-350 for over 20 years and it's never leaving. It's THE BEST vocoder for the money.
I am looking at picking one up tomorrow.

How responsive is it to different carriers?
I am interested to see how it reacts to the rich chorus string patch on my Opus 3 and also a heavily PWM patch on the CS-15. Most of the videos/posts on the subject refer to unfiltered, clean osc tones.
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Re: Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

Post by Z » Thu Dec 13, 2012 12:49 am

The busier the carrier signal, the less intelligable vocals will be. It's best to start with clean sounds as carriers and run your vocoded vocals through additional effects. As you might hear in my video demo, disengaging the ensemble effect helps make the vocal more intelligable.

Just like experimenting with any musical toys, there's no wrong way to do things. Just find what works best for you.

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Re: Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

Post by breakfix » Tue Feb 16, 2016 1:30 am

Here's my SBF-325 flanger in action:



~ regarding the chorus effect, I've found it to be fairly subtle by itself but if you drive the LFO via the CV, for some reason it really comes alive. The last 20-30s of the video showcase that.

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Re: Roland Rack Series (Late 70's)

Post by minime123 » Tue Feb 16, 2016 4:42 pm

we have the sbf and the svc in the studio and have bought, restored and sold them in the past and they're great. never had one of the big phasers but would love one, if anyone's selling one. have had dimensions d's and was never impressed because the effect was too subtle.
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