Today, Matt Lange dives deep into the Roland Juno-X. Let’s see what he has to say…
At first glance, you might mistake it for the iconic Juno 106, but I’ve had my trusty Juno 106 for a whopping 18 years, and it’s one of my all-time favorite synths. So, let’s see how the Juno X stacks up – is it just another Roland 106, or is it something entirely unique? Let’s find out!
Unboxing the Juno X
When you first power up the Juno X, you’re greeted with that unmistakable sound – the “Juno X Synth One.” It’s that classic Juno tone that we all know and love. But let’s dive deeper and explore some of the presets.
- Juno X Lead: The Juno X leads showcase its versatility with a dynamic range of tones.
- Juno X Brass: Discover the richness of the Juno X’s brass sounds.
The Juno X boasts the new “X algorithm,” which is a fresh addition to the Juno family, along with algorithms for the 106 and Juno 60. Plus, it’s a gateway to thousands of classic Roland sounds through the Rolling Cloud. Essentially, this synth combines elements of the Juno series with access to a treasure trove of timeless sounds.
Exploring Classic Presets
But what about those beloved Juno 106 presets? Let’s take a look:
- Juno 106 Strings: The Juno 106 Strings capture the essence of the classic Juno sound.
- Juno 106 Pad: Immerse yourself in the warm, enveloping tones of the Juno 106.
- Juno 106 Classic Bass: Get ready for some classic bass sounds that stay true to the 106 legacy.
Sure, the Juno X nails that classic 106 vibe, but it also surprises with some unique tones. It even delves into German bass territory, showcasing its versatility.
Discovering Juno 60 Sounds
Next up, we’re exploring the Juno 60 presets:
- Juno 60 Pad: Experience the nostalgic warmth of the Juno 60.
- Juno 60 Brass: Get ready for brass sounds that transport you back in time.
- Juno 60 Psytrance: Dive into the world of psychedelic trance with Juno 60 presets.
The Juno 60 presets are equally impressive, offering that nostalgic warmth with a touch of modern flair. And let’s not forget the arpeggiator, adding a dynamic element to your music.
Exploring the Juno X Algorithm
Now, what sets the Juno X apart is its exclusive algorithm, the Juno X algorithm. Let’s have a listen:
- Raw Juno X Sound: The Juno X algorithm introduces a new pulse wave control, allowing for unique sonic possibilities.
This algorithm may look and sound like a Juno, but it offers unique features, like manual pulse width control. You can even turn it into a super saw for those epic trance pads.
Creating Your Own Patches
But let’s get hands-on and build a patch from scratch using the classic Juno architecture. The Juno X’s interface makes it a breeze to dive in:
- Creating a Warm Pad: Craft your own warm and lush pad sounds.
- Crafting a Punchy Bass: Dive into the world of punchy basslines and explore the Juno X’s capabilities.
With its immediate interface and straightforward design, the Juno X is not only capable of classic sounds but also invites you to experiment and create your own sonic landscapes.
Chorus, Filters, and More
Of course, we can’t forget the iconic Juno chorus, and the Juno X doesn’t disappoint. It offers three distinct choruses:
- Chorus 1: Experience the classic Juno chorus effect.
- Chorus 2: Dive deeper into chorus sounds that add depth and dimension.
- Chorus 3 (Exclusive): Explore a brand-new chorus effect that brings a unique twist to your sounds.
The chorus is lush and versatile, and you can even combine them for a unique sound. Plus, there’s a drive feature for that extra oomph.
Comparing filters is always intriguing:
- Roland Filter: Experience the classic Roland filter’s resonance and character.
- Bogue Filter: Dive into a different filter type with its own unique sonic qualities.
- Sequential Filter: Explore the distinctive filter resonance of the Sequential filter.
Each filter type has its character, and the resonance settings create diverse sonic possibilities.
Envelope and Modulation
The Juno X offers a familiar envelope section, reminiscent of the Juno 106:
- Creating a Dreamy Pad: Craft dreamy pad sounds that evolve over time.
- Crafting a Punchy Bassline: Shape punchy basslines with precision.
You can easily shape your sounds with the intuitive envelope controls and add LFO modulation for that extra movement.
One significant advantage of the Juno X is its robust build, making it a reliable choice for live performances and studio work. Plus, it has modern features like USB connectivity and extensive voice options.
So, is the Juno X a worthy successor to the Juno 106? Well, it may not sound exactly the same, but it offers a wide range of modern features and access to classic Roland sounds. If you’re in the market for a versatile synth that can inspire your creativity and covers a lot of ground, the Juno X is definitely worth a look.
Whether you’re a seasoned synth veteran or just starting your musical journey, the Juno X has something to offer. Head over to your local music store, give it a spin, and let its inspiring sounds guide your musical exploration. After all, what matters most in an instrument is how it ignites your passion for creating music, and the Juno X does just that.