Vintage Digital


Classic Recording Studio Equipment

Roland may well be known for extraordinary keyboards more than anything else, but they have a long history in making digital effects processors too. Roland’s early tape delay devices such as the Roland RE-210 from the early 1970s (and the follow up products) are now so highly valued that they rarely come up for sale. Roland were never content and always innovated, so when digital processing came along, they were right there at the forefront, starting with the Roland SDE-2000 digital delay in 1981. In the same year they released one of their most highly regarded effects, the Roland SDD-320 Dimension D Chorus.

Over the years Roland produced some great digital effects, including the Roland SRV-2000 digital reverb. The SRV-2000 is an early grainy sounding reverb with so much character, it sounds fantastic on snares, but is most famous for being used by Slash for that guitar sound on Sweet Child of Mine. Roland tried to capture some of the big studio reverb market by introducing the Roland R880 reverb, a high end reverb that had minimal success. It was difficult to knock the big guns out of the studio space as many other manufactures found. After that Roland went back to what they do best, a more affordable range of digital processors, the Roland SRV-330 dimensional digital reverb which is truly excellent and underrated.

The SDE-330 dimensional space delay was next and the rarest of them all, the SDX-330 dimensional expander which was a modulation effects box. It is said that the chorus effects on the SDX are superior to even the Roland Dimension D. They rarely ever come up for sale and are grabbed very quickly when they do. Their final product, the Roland SRV-3030 should have been an absolute winner, but sadly Roland took a step backwards and it is dull and boring unit. Sadly too is the fact it is often mistaken for the SRV-330 and vice versa, but they are two very different units.

The Roland RE-201 when it was released in 1974, was an engineering masterpiece. It featured a sophisticated tape-echo effect and a built-in spring reverb, with different sound variations selectable via 12 different operating modes.
The Roland RE-301 Chorus Echo is a vintage tape delay unit known for its warm analog sound. It features a built-in chorus for added modulation. The unit has straightforward controls for easy manipulation and is suitable for musicians seeking a classic, reliable delay effect with a touch of vintage charm.
The Roland RSS RV-800 stereo reverberation unit incorporates an optional compressor to increase headroom and allow reverberation effects to be added to low level signals.
The Roland SBF-325 is a stereo flanger with dual audio delay lines. It has three different flanger effect modes and one chorus mode. It preceded the now famous Roland SDD-330 by two years in terms of rack mount chorus effectors.
Roland’s first digital delay, the Roland SDE-2000 was a big hit when it arrived, guitarists took to it like a duck to water, as too did home recording studios. It may have had limited bandwidth with the relatively low sampling rate of 26kHz, but that did not stop the success Roland enjoyed with the SDE-2000, but it did kill off the Space Echo, for a while at least.
Roland’s Chorus effect that featured heavily on their JC Series guitar amplifiers was a unique and desirable sound back in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The demand for this new chorus effect was so great, Roland developed the Roland SDD-320 Dimension D to satisfy that market demand, and it is quite possibly the greatest chorus effect processor ever made.
The Roland SDE-3000 was a natural progression from the earlier SDE-2000 and offered better sound quality through increased bandwidth among other improvements. The Roland SDE-3000 is a high quality Delay Machine featuring various delay effects and also the Memory function that retains up to eight different panel settings, therefore, it is extremely helpful for both studio and live performance.
The Roland SDE-1000 represented Roland’s entry into the affordable Digital Delay market and it brought quality effects for all of us. The Roland SDE-1000 Digital Delay is a high quality 12 bit digital delay machine with various attractive features including chorusing.
The Roland SRV-2000 is one of those classic old Japanese reverbs that while not perfect, is certainly perfect in some situations, and in particular for snare! Yes it is grainy at times, perhaps a little too bright and the reverb tails are not the smoothest, but it is these characteristics that give the Roland SRV-2000 it’s mojo and a place in your studio.
The Roland SDE-2500 Digital Delay came after the Roland SDE-3000 and coincided with the release of the equally excellent Roland SRV-2000 Digital Reverb.
Roland proudly introduced a new standard in signal processors the Roland DEP-5 Digital Effects Processor. The Roland DEP-5 incorporates Roland’s most advanced digital technology for great sound and easy programming. Roland digital effects devices are the choice of musicians and engineers the world over. Onstage and in studios, the remarkable SRV series digital reverb units and SDE series digital delays play a vital role in today’s music.
The Roland E-660 is a versatile two-channel digital equalizer with eight filters for precise sound adjustments, offering flexible configurations and intuitive controls, along with delay capabilities and extensive connectivity options.
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