Synth Site: Roland: XV-5080: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 4.2 out of 5
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astronomer from u.s. writes:
After having just played with this thing last weekend, the only thing I'd say about it is that this thing is just way too expensive for a meat & taters box! $1800 new? That's what an Alesis A6 should cost! I just want to use it as a backend to my rm1x. Oh well...

posted Thursday-Apr-11-2002 at 16:45
m203 a hobbyist user from USA writes:
Let me first start by saying I own a Motif8 so I already have access to the best sampled pianos, ep's, horns and drums on the planet. What the Motif lacks (IMO) is good electric and acoustic guitars/basses, strings, pads and leads.. and that's why I decided to seek another box to fill those gaps. I know the Motif will load samples, but if I need a special sample, I use HALion in VST - which automatically load all samples used in a given song.

Accessibility is key for me. I need quick access to good presets.

I jerked around with all the latest and greatest rackmounts at GC for a few hours. The Triton rack is very cool for certain types of sounds (read: POP) and has a plethora of those patches. I owned a Triton Pro a ways back and it was fun to use for Dr. Dre type stuff and funky dance, etc.. but for live-type funk and R&B (read: Maxwell, Erykah Badu, etc), forget it. When I do that type of music I want to emulate musicians.. and in order to do that I need highly expressive instruments (multi layers of velocity, etc etc). That is where the Motif blows the Triton out of the water.

So the Triton was out.

Next up, Proteus 2000. Great little box. 'nuff said.

Then there was the XV5080. I have owned both a 1080 and a 2080. And I have missed those pads and strings immensely. Hearing the 5080 brought it all back to me. Roland claims to have added a ton of a new sounds but don't believe the hype. Roland cranks out more exaggerated propaganda than any other synth company in existence and that is a well known fact. They are full of $hit and anyone worth their druthers will testify to that effect, trust me.

In fact, if you're on a budget, don't blow $1,700 on a 5080. Get a 2080 and you will have essentially the same library of sounds. I promise. Only diff. is that the 5080 loads sample data (which is a joke because soft samplers do that WAAAAAAAAAAAAY better), has one more effect block and - this is the kicker - has AD/DA convertors to die for.

The 1080 AND 2080 had piss poor convertors and you could hear decay trails fizzle out in headphones. I hated that. The 5080 is CLEAN. Even when it is idle it is completely and utterly SILENT. The Motif suprisingly still wins in over all sonic clarity - IMO. Nothing out there touches the Mo.

One mo' thing.. EVIDENTLY the 5080 has a faster processor so is therefore more suitable for MIDI loads (timing probs were inherent in JV series when MIDI bus was under heavy load).

The effects in the 5080 were apparently inherited from the famed 3030 reverb. I believe this bit of hype. The reverb is superb.

But if you're just after a ton of GREAT sounds, the 2080 is the clear choice for you (pardon pun).

SmartMedia cards was a good idea but I still can't figure out how to autoload setting from SmartMedia..? Nowhere in manual.

In any event, electric guitars, pads, strings, basses, etc KICK AZZ on both the JV and XV. The XV sports a slightly better set of acoustic guitars now. Flutes suck on all Roland products. Brass is not nearly as good as Motif's brass. EP's are not impressive at all. If you are a PLAYER, you need a Motif, trust me. Play one and see for yourself. No comparison, though as I said, I wasn't looking for EP's.

XV and JV Pianos have always sucked. The hybrid stuff is very David Foster-esque (and he has used the JV hybrids) and is excellent for studio work. Fine for pop mixes. You know the sound. Think Whitney Houston. All Roland stuff. Glistening, chorused pianos that clunk when you hit 'em. Mariah. Luther Vandross. But don't think you're going to put some Joe Sample type stuff down. THat's where this conversation heads back to Motif land.

JV and XV strings are renowned.. and for good reason. You can't beat them. They are stupendous. Love all the creamy pads and WICKED leads, too. The distorted guitars are simply to die for. You will solo them all night your first night. Play IRON MAN (Black Sabbath) in the lower register with ROCK YOUR SOCKS and tell me you don't get the chills. That's what the XV is all about to me.. leads, strings, sub basses, acoustic guitars. MmmmmMMMMMMMMm PERFECT companion to the Motif - which clearly lacks the aformentioned, I don't care what Yamaha says.

I should state that for FM modulation and wacked out synth stuff, the voices Yamaha has put out post production ( for the Motif blow everything out there away (with the exception of dedicated analog stuff - Access, Nord, JP, Waldorf, et al). Yamaha knows FM. They f'g invented it.

Did I say I love my Motif yet? Oh yeah, back to the XV..

It truly kicks serious azz is a lot of areas. The new drum kits are off the hook. Absolute phenomenal in some cases. Listen for yourself.

Overall the XV fits my needs perfectly. It goes hand and hand with the Motif. Now all I need is that new Akai drum pad tabletop and I am set for life :P (don't you tell YOUR wife that, too?)


Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Sunday-Mar-24-2002 at 20:15
VOTIVE from Alien Space Mod writes:
For 5080 memory: is a well known site that specializes in smapler memory.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Saturday-Jan-26-2002 at 14:05
novaheart from canada writes:
There are some problems with this unit: It uses older memory for its ram: took me several days to find a store that carried this low profile edo ram that no computers use anymore, the user interface is more complicated than any Roland synth yet, it doesn't hook up directly to your computer, however I dont care about that becuase I transfer samples via cd or zip which works fine. As an all in one production synth it is excellent though. However, is it worth the practically double price over the 3080?? Depends on what gear you have, if you dont have a sampler or sample playback capabilaties, get it. Otherwise look at the 3080. It sounds fantastic, of course it has the same sound chip as the older XV's and XP's and even JV's but it is far more versatile as a multi-timbral module than those other units. The 32 parts is great, the effects are amazing, the digital outs rule, the 128 megs of ram for samples rules. Regardless of its shortcomings the only thing out there comparable for around the same price is a Korg Triton. It's not the ultimate, but its getting closer. You need a computer to edit the waves if you are doing your own samples: To load samples into the XV5080 use a zip drive, since the max memory is 128 megs, zips are perfect for transfering data. You can burn the wavs or aiffs onto a cd too and load those into the 5080, but ive been doing it with zips and have had no problems. Its fast enough. You can save you multi part setups along with the sampled wavs together on a zip or smart media card. This is awesome if you are playing live alot. Sure the 5080 is not seamless but the end results and sound quality for me are worth it. My tracks sound better than ever. Ive had several Roland moduals over the years, since the MT32 came out, and this ones the best yet. I had an JV1080 for 7 years and sold it to get the 5080, and I sleep just fine thanks.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Saturday-Jan-05-2002 at 06:03
DANIEL .W a hobbyist user from Germany writes:
A Wondurful Machines great Sound !

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Sunday-Dec-23-2001 at 19:19
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