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Roland's V-Synth now has a travel-friendly offspring. The XT is a portable new V-Synth with some spectacular tricks up its sleeves -- and with enough synthesis and audio-processing power to make heads spin. It's fully stocked with an array of synthesis types, including the V-Synth's Elastic Audio Synthesis engine, plus analog-synth modeling, vocal modeling, and classic D-50 emulation. Add to that a rich lineup of COSM effects, external audio processing, a touch-sensitive color display, eight universal edit knobs, and you have an instrument that redefines rack/tabletop technology.
The original V-Synth's factory soundset was a showcase of twisting, bending, otherworldly sounds. But the V-Synth is no one-trick pony, as evidenced by the new batch of unique "playable" patches created by an A-list group of star artists and producers. The patches might sound classic at first touch, but they explode to animated life when modulated. Start on familiar terrain, then hit the launchpad V-Synth style.
The XT's innovative Sound Shaper function allows new sounds to be created with the virtual "know-how" of professional sound designers. By selecting a destination sound type -- whether a pad, bass, lead sound, etc. -- this macro function guides users quickly through relevant parameters while editing. Complex editing is made easy.
The XT provides a variety of input paths for sampling and external-audio processing. Sounds can be sampled directly into the synth via its audio inputs (XLR and 1/4-inch), imported via USB (WAV and AIF format), or fed live to the XT for processing in real time. The front-panel Hi-Z input allows the XT to function as a unique and powerful effects rack for guitar or other instruments; the XLR input (with phantom power) allows the XT to be utilized as a full-blown vocoder. USB audio streaming enables computer-aided sound design and additional audio-processing possibilities.
Physically speaking, the XT is the most flexible rack unit Roland has ever manufactured. It can be mounted in a rack, where it can be positioned flush or tilted and locked at an angle that best suits the working environment. Or it can be taken out of the rack, and placed on a flat surface. Its angled profile is designed to make the XT work perfectly as a standalone tabletop unit. Whether used in a rack or on a tabletap, the XT's large, color touch-screen display provides luxurious navigation, and its row of eight universal edit knobs makes using the synth fast, friendly, and expressive.
In addition to its user sampling, elastic audio manipulation, and analog-synth modeling, the XT comes pre-installed with Roland's VC-1 (D-50 emulator) and VC-2 (Vocal Designer).
MSRP: $2499. Expected to ship in April.