Synth Site: Roland: SPD-6: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 4.4 out of 5
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Jurgen Mollema a hobbyist user from the Netherlands writes:
This is a great little box!

I bought it mainly for triggering drumsounds from another module. So at first i wasn'nt really interested in its internal sounds. But man, jamming with this thing, using the internal sounds, is great. And you can even practice in bed, because it runs on batteries.

The built in sounds are good, but not more than that. Pretty standard. And many sounds have a nasty reverb wich you can't defeat. I use the internal sounds only for jamming along with other music or practising "off line" i.e. not in the studio.

I'm not a drummer, so I don't consider buying an electronic drum kit at the price of a car. But the SPD-6 is as close to real drumming as it can get with affordable midi gear.

Plug in two DP-2 pedals for the kick and the hi-hat and voila, now it acts like a real drumkit. Even with the sound of a closing hi-hat when you step on the pedal.

Compared to drummachines, working with a drummachine is stupid button pressing, and has nothing to do with drumming, and its too time consuming. I got rid of mine actually. Compared to playing drums on a midi keyboard, you try that 32th note snare rols or fast hi-hat pattern on piano keys, and maintain percussion- like dynamics.

When the machine runs on batteries, it has another nice feature. When the batteries are almost empty, or if you put in rechargable 1,2V (too low) NiCd batteries, the machine adds a really great distortion to the bass drum sounds, even at low volumes. I personally like this distortion, because it sounds like you are really playing loud. And the distortion is a REAL distortion which follows the dynimcs. Much better than that cheap pre-sampled distortion, added to some of that drum sounds in your module. It's obvious that new batteries, or using a Boss PSA adapter produces clean sounds.

Advantages

Relatively cheap, compared to Rolands other percussion products Good responding pads Very flexible. You can assign midi note numbers to pads, so no problem for that interesting kicks and snares with high note numbers, located at the far right of your midi keyboard. Also you can change pad sensitivity and treshold. In case of use with sampler, the gate time of the transmitted note is adjustable.

Disadvantages

Nasty reverb, on most of the internal sounds, mostly the snares. Great for jamming along with hardrock oriented music, but the reverb is always there, even when you don't want it. Fortunately it has some snares without reverb, which sound quite good. Too many stupid sound effects, not even usable for a percussionist at a wedding gig. In my opinion a waste of ROM. No midi-out

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Wednesday-Nov-14-2001 at 13:07
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