Synth Site: Roland: XP-80: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 4.4 out of 5
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Hockel a part-time user from UK writes:
I saw Royksopp recently, and they had what looked like two brand-new XP80s there on stage with them

posted Sunday-Jun-16-2002 at 14:43
Ben Meynders a professional user from USA writes:
I bought the XP 80 after years of working in studio's where the JV's 1080 and 2080 ruled the mix. I basically bought it to have access to all the same sounds you hear on commercial records, neatly packed into one keyboard. As such, it works fine for the keyboardists playing in Top40 orchestras, since you're likely to find whatever sound you need to emulate most of the hit records in the last 20 years or so. If your looking for your typical rockguitar-and-drums-defeating artillery it may not suit your style/taste, as the XP's overall character is more one of detailed clarity rather than power-by-the-pound. But mind you, in patch mode those distorded leadguitars and wahwahs sound simply awesome. The XP really is all the JV 1080 sounds with the 2080 display, and a lot of very handily positioned performance controllers. I love the fact that the transpose keys are defaulted to octave-shift, a well though out function when you are using the keyboard in split mode, got it? There are two assignable sliders ride above the pitch/mod stick, which i haven't used much but might be convenient if you need that type of control. Must say though that their position next to the volume slider is a bit of a bummer. But brilliant in its simplicity is the effects on/off buttons. There are three, multiFX, Chorus and Reverb, and they can be switched on or off individually. Try switching the delay on and off while you are soloing, sweet. i don't really use the sequencer that much, since i mostly work with Cubase. But it's handy when you come in the rehearsal room with the sequence of your new song in the XP's diskdrive, just load it and play the darn thing. I do use the drive also to store performance settings. Saves me having to sys-ex all data into Cubase for every song. Nifty features like taptempo control with a pedal really turn this one into a very smart live sequencer, though -again- I haven't really used that. Operating all this wonderful stuff is easy for anyone who has at least had two hours on any other digital Roland synth. Although I prefer the sound of for example Ensoniq's late MR 61, Korg's Trinity/Triton or the new Kurzweil PC 2, in terms of value for money I think the XP is still a great offer even now, which is like four years after its introduction? Potential Fantom or XV 88 customers, forget those and get a XP 60 or 80 instead. Use the rest of the money to buy either expansion boards (some of those really sound much better than the ROM-sounds), or another module or so. If the XP had had the pianosounds of the Session board, with Rhodes and Wurlys from '60s and 70's board and some more bass and drums I would rate this a hands-down-5-outta-5. As it is, 4-outta-5 is not bad for a synth that is four years old. PS if you want an XV 88 because of the hammer action, better buy Roland's new RD 700 with an extra expansion board. Saves you money on a shitty D-Beam controller I've never seen anybody use, and thei figure you want good pianosound if you are going to buy a hammer-action keyboard. compare the XV88's pianosound with that of the RD 700, it really isn't fair.

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Sunday-Dec-16-2001 at 20:31
inc from belgium writes:
i worked with the xp 80 for about 2 years and i have to admit that it's a great synth it has about 600 internal sounds and a carload of effects. But hey, We're now 4 years later and the xp 80 is dead and burried due to the new xv series. If you have the opportunity to buy this synth at an average price you do not hesitate

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Thursday-May-03-2001 at 10:57
puzk a part-time user from Sydney Australia writes:
What a great synth! Legendary performance, to describe this in short. One bad thing is that I purchased this at a bad time. It might have been awesome about 5 years ago, but now the XV-series are out, and it just buries the XP-series for dead.

SOunds are good. Piano sounds are exceptional. Just plain smooth and clear. All the other sounds are smooth and relatively thin. I'm not a fan of thin sounds, but I think Roland tries to get their sound as clear and fine as possible. I havnt explored the sequencer as much, but the parameters you can adjust are limitless.

Roland also has a good range of expansion boards, these will make the Roland as good as a triton when fully expanded, with tons of sound and features. Metal chassis, makes this solid when you're playing live. Now I don't think I will require a 88 weighted controller.

Now for those who have the dough considering this: just wait a bit longer. I think they might be releasing a smaller version of the awesome XV series. The XP series are old..(I know) but I think it will still perform, and has potential. I had considered the trinity and this but I'd settled with the 64 polyphony xp-80. I'm glad I did. I like using up a lot of voices. The trinity is just not as practical.(32poly)

posted Thursday-Apr-12-2001 at 06:50
Dustmuffin a professional user from Boston, Ma writes:
I really really like the xp-80 lots and lots. Especially with the orceastral 2 board and the piano board installed. I don't like the idea of using presets for noises like "moog lead" or "bass synth" or other crappy emulations, but if you are like me and can't afford a grand piano, or don't play tuba or cello, this seems to be the thing to get. I've only scratched the surface of the onboard sequencing it has, but that's because I don't own one yet. If anyone has a reason why I should not buy this keyboard PLEASE e-mail me and tell me what that reason is, and what I should do to make myself happy. I don't like the idea of wasting the better part of two grand. And no, i can't afford the triton.

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Thursday-Apr-12-2001 at 02:08
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