Roland Cloud Thumbs down!
Hi everyone this week we are discussing the roland cloud suite of synths and drum machines. Is it worth investing in the cloud the decesion is yours.
Heres some info
The Aira and Legendary Series plugins are unarguably the main events. The first consists of emulations of the Aira System-1 and System-8, and with the software running the exact same ACB (Analog Circuit Behaviour) algorithms as their physical counterparts, they’re essentially flawless. The plugins even enable communication with the corresponding hardware for hands-on control and bi-directional patch transfer.
The Legendary Series, meanwhile, 12 virtual Roland instruments: the TR-808 and 909, SH-101, System-100, D-50, Jupiter-8, Juno-106, JV-1080, SRX Orchestra expansion board, Promars (a mad but worthy inclusion), SH-2 and Sound Canvas VA.
Also using Roland’s ACB and DCB (Digital Circuit Behaviour) modelling, each and every one is simply astonishing in its sonic realism and playability. A few new features have been added, too, including multitrack pattern sequencers for the TRs, extra effects and waveforms for the 1080, increased polyphony for the Juno-106, and Plug-Out functionality for the analogue synths.
The Tera, Anthology and - cringe - Flavr Series are multisample libraries that load into the Concerto plugin. Tera is all about acoustic instrument emulation, and at present offers a piano and a steel guitar; Anthology serves up various classic Roland sounds from a range of specific years -1985, 1986, 1993, etc; and Flavr comprises smaller libraries of genre-based presets - electro-house, disco, synthwave, etc.
The seventh Series, Software Solutions, currently only has the six-year-old and not particularly useful R-Mix “mix manipulation” app for Windows rattling around within. Whether this section dies on the vine, we’ll see, but it’s not exactly a flying start.
While the Concerto libraries are good to have, Roland Cloud’s main draws are undoubtedly the Aira and Legendary plugins, which look great and sound absolutely fantastic - all but indistinguishable from the real things, and genuinely evoking that authentic Roland vibe. The price of such power is a hefty CPU hit, however. The System-8 hovers around 50% in Ableton Live’s CPU meter on a 3.3GHz i7 MacBook Pro with 16GB RAM, set to a 256-sample buffer, while the Juno-106 pegs at about 30%, and even the humble TR-808 demands about 13-15%. This is clearly down to the quality of the circuit modelling, rather than inefficient code, but it’s something to be aware of.
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Love and peace Bangers and Chumley
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