Roland Classic Analog for VariOS

Jupiter 8 and TB303 - it's for real      08/05/03


VariOS-8- takes you back
One of the more interesting announcements from the MESSE sort of slipped out at a "We're Great!" Roland press bash. When showing the VariOS module, the Japanese gentleman presenting, showed a couple of possible applications they had put together to demonstrate the power and open endedness of the VariOS system. These were effectively Jupiter 8 and TB-303 emulations. Quite a bombshell and a very interesting development when you consider the rich history of Rolands vintage past. Indeed given the simultaneous news that Korg were to be introducing vintage emulations of their own (MS-20, Wavestation and Polysix) in plug-in form. Now some time has passed, Roland have announced these two items as hard products. The VariOS-8 and VariOS 303 are essentially a polyphonic Analog Modeling Synth (which can re-create Roland's vintage Juno and Jupiter synths) and monophonic Analog Modeling Bass Synth (to re-create a Roland TB-303 Bassline synth) respectively, but with modern conveniences like onboard effects and more.

VariOS-303 - old faithful returns
As we all know, Roland's analog polysynths have been used by countless musicians worldwide. Now these sounds are available in the new VariOS-8. This analog-modeled softsynth includes two oscillators with a choice of several analog waveforms and sub-oscillator emulation?plus low-pass and high-pass filters connected in serial, envelope generators, LFOs and an arpeggiator. New features include the ability to configure the oscillators for intermodulation and waveform sync, plus professional-quality effects and detailed editing screens. And since the VariOS module can work stand-alone, you can use the VariOS-8 like a preset analog modeling synth, all with zero CPU drain. The second firmware update is the VariOS 303, an analog-modeled bass synth reminiscent of Roland's vintage TB-303 Bass Line. All of the original controls are provided, including the step sequencer and "Slide" parameter, plus an impressive collection of effects that give the VariOS 303 even more aggressive sounds. These effects include a compressor, overdrive/distortion, chorus, delay and 3-band EQ, all connected in serial. There are also two ways to create patterns. Users can choose from the classic step sequencing of the original, or they can use the new Slider Pattern screen for easier programming. The VariOS firmware can always be reverted back to its original audio manipulation functions. In this configuration, users can independently manipulate pitch, time and formant, add effects and even build complete audio-based arrangements, all in a realtime environment. Best of all, since all processing is handled by the VariOS module, users can take advantage of the original V-Producer software and the new VariOS-8 and VariOS 303 without tapping into their computer's CPU resources. By June 1, 2003, VariOS-8 and VariOS 303 will be bundled with all new VariOS modules shipped from Roland, and will be available to registered users via download.
  • www.roland.com/VariOS/features.

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