NAMM06: Roland Launch SH-201 Synth

Designed to put the fun back in synthesis      21/01/06
To those of a certain age the name brings back echoes of an old 1980’s favourite - the SH-101 - every synth players favourite strap-on which, with its availability in red and blue custom colours and its modulation grip, had a lighthearted element to it. Roland now reckon that the SH-201 will put the fun back into synthesis and they are so enthusiastic about it that it seems only fair to let them tell you about it in their own words...
"For musicians new to synthesizers, Roland announces the most friendly and fun analog-modeling instrument on the market: the SH-201. For synth pros, the SH-201 will remind them of why they fell in love with synthesizers in the first place. Simply, the SH-201 is a blast to play! It sounds great too, thanks to such features as Roland’s famous Supersaw waveform, resonant filter, saturation control, and more.
Even though it’s super fun and easy to use, the SH-201 is no toy when it comes to sound. With two beefy analog-modeling oscillators onboard, complete with Roland’s famous Supersaw waveform and resonant filter, this little synth can blow down doors. It also comes with high-quality delay and reverb effects for adding depth and dimension to the sound, a saturation control for adding a ripsaw edge, and an arpeggiator for instant rhythmic motion.
Playing the SH-201 from its keyboard is only half the fun. External audio sources can be plugged into the SH-201’s external input (CD/MP3-player, vocal mic, guitar, bass, you name it) and the sound can be twisted with the front-panel knobs and sliders. Players can wave their hands over the SH-201’s invisible D Beam for dramatic modulation.
The SH-201 can be connected to a computer (Mac or PC) with one simple USB cable. Both MIDI and audio can be routed through the USB port. A free VSTi software editor is included, which allows SH-201 sounds to be manipulated from within a VST-compatible host software sequencer.
The SH-201’s front panel puts every control directly under the player’s fingertips in a logically positioned signal path from left to right. No hidden menus, no nonsense. Just play and move the knobs and sliders. It’s as simple as that. Students of synthesis will love the ease and immediate gratification of the SH-201. Educators can use it as a great educational tool to teach basics of synthesis. No other modern synth on the market is as fun, friendly, and inviting."

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