The Roland AIRA System-1 Synthesizer Introduced At DanceFair 2014

Last Friday, the Roland Aira line was officially announced, and the line made its debut at Dancefair 2014.

This video, via sonicstate captures an official intro for the System-1 synthesizer – a new virtual analog synthesizer that will be able to load VST models of various Roland synths and also act as a hardware controller for these VSTs in your DAW. 

The Roland AIRA line includes:

Check it out and let us know what you think of the Aira System-1 concept!

43 thoughts on “The Roland AIRA System-1 Synthesizer Introduced At DanceFair 2014

  1. Sounds great- Nice and smooth at 96K, some new innovation and well priced. I think Roland will have a hit, especially if they release (free?) new ‘plug outs’ that essentially give you a new board from a software update (hardware with benefits….)

    1. Sounds great? Maybe – if all you want to do is sound like Swedish House Mafia. For an instrument that is advertised and promoted as being based on “Analog Circuit Behavior” I have yet to hear anything remotely analog sounding come out of it.

  2. Free plug outs ???

    No way ….. the whole reason for the plug out technology is for roland to keep selling you what will basically be a vst but in a format that can only work on their platform and won’t be pirated.

  3. they say its 4 voice, but they also say its 4 osc… but does that mean 4 osc per voice, or 1 osc per voice? they arent really clear on that, so it makes me suspect its 1 osc per voice.. with no multitimbral

    which is kinda crap for a 2 octave VA synth in this price range, imo

        1. Things that are good DO cost money. But would you rather have something good (and original) or something that advertises itself as something it is only pretending to be?

          1. Sorry but I think I will stick to my Analog4 for a really, really good sounding analog synth, four voice poly, sequencer plus arp. great filters, great sounding oscillators, good analog envelopes easy to program with great chorus, great delay and great reverb built inside the synth…..along with having 4 separate tracks for having 4 separate analog synths playing at the same time….and for an analog it was fairly affordable.
            I’m sorry why would I want an expensive mono/duo analog replica?

            But it is interesting that Korg is attempting an ARP Oddessy.
            Probably other companies will be watching intently to see if it sells?

                1. I will sit back and suck my own farts in, because what I own, is OBVIOUSLY the only way to make music and the brands I LIKE are the only ones that are good.

                  Hmmyess good fart num num num!

  4. +100 less fx on demo’s please! and i still don’t get the thing about it being the fastest LFO…wtf does that mean? Most LFO’s will get so fast they go into the audio spectrum, so what do they mean by this?

      1. I am curious as to how much each USB plug-in will cost in the future?
        They are showing how the SH101 sounds that must mean that it is not ready to show yet?

        It would be interesting if this 2 octave 4voice board has success Roland has plans for future boards?
        49, 61, 76 keys in the future?
        Maybe 8 voice……….possibly this time with ACB technology that a Jupiter 8 could possibly be in the future? Who knows how far they want to take this new ACB technology?

        1. Feel free to think that ACB technology is “new”. Personally, I think its a scam. EVERY synth tries to sound like a hardware synthesizer. So they modelled some specific electronics. What they are trying to do is hardly new at all.

          1. I think I will feel free to see how it sounds in the future when it really goes through a good test and presentation without bias or without joining in on the digital/analog bitch fest that seems to go on forever and ever and ever. Yawn. Life is too short to be bored by that kind of mind numbing torcher.

            and let’s see ………….what is new about re-creating actual analog synths using the old analog components? It’s great to have analog systems in the studio. I have 2 and they are irreplaceable but I have digital synths that I love just as much.

  5. Whoops…..(Not) showing

    I am curious as to how much each USB plug-in will cost in the future?
    “They are NOT showing” how the SH101 sounds that must mean that it is not ready to show yet?

    It would be interesting if this 2 octave 4voice board has success Roland has plans for future boards?
    49, 61, 76 keys in the future?
    Maybe 8 voice……….possibly this time with ACB technology that a Jupiter 8 could possibly be in the future? Who knows how far they want to take this new ACB technology?

  6. I agree that they will likely be releasing a larger version with more keys and more polyphony. They are kind of taking a book from the Apple book and releasing an intentionally limited version so that they can release a better version later.

    This presenter is not a good person to be talking about the technology. 1) The audio sample rate of the DAC has nothing to do with the filter stepping, so mentioning 96kHz makes no sense. The internal 32bit sample of the pots is the important part. 2) Some LFO’s double as VCO’s and go well into the audio rate, so I have no idea what that comment was about. 3) Demos of waveforms and filter sweeps should never have FX on them, especially not the vast amount of reverb used here.

    Overall, I think it is a very interesting idea, and I they have done a great job with the analog modelling shown in other videos. I am interested to see how this plug-out stuff goes. I don’t have any need for it since I have already spent thousands of dollars collecting and making synths over the years, but if I was just starting out then this would be something I would consider. However, I would have to hear it in person. Haters complaining about it from a 3-4 minute compressed YouTube video are ludicrous. You have to try it in person to know how it sounds and feels.

    1. So you cannot compare one synth to another under the same You Tube compressed circumstances? You don’t need to be sitting in the perfect listening environment to work out that Roland are trying to sell you Avicii in a box here. Advertising it as based on analog classics is the Jupiter 80 trick pulled again until you jump the shark. It didn’t work before and it won’t work now. This is just another nasty VA trance box.

      1. No, I do no think that it is a fair judge of a synth’s sound capabilities to use only YouTube videos. It is especially unfair when the video doesn’t give a good range of examples, is bathed in reverb, and the synth doesn’t even have all the software in it yet that it will have when released. Wait until at least the sh-101 plug-out is ready and then give it a try in your local music store. Even if it sounds awesome, you could not like the way the keys and controls feel (I think I will miss the pitch and mod wheel). Getting your hands on it is the best way to make an informed decision about a synth.

  7. What’s frustrating me to no end is Roland is the king of digital control, take that 96kHz sample rate and hook it up to real analog circuits and they would rule the day. Think of all the modulation capabilities of that lightning fast digital control with all the analog knowledge base they amassed over the years. You’ed have the best sounding, instantly tweak-able synth ever made.

  8. I would have liked to see this from Native instruments, actually surprised they didn’t think of this first, ah the future seems bright.

  9. This is the second System 1 vid I’ve seen & both times, as they get to the Super Square, I have to stop listening. Bloody irritating sound.

  10. Remove the damn reverb. You can make a fart sound good through one. I want to hear the fancy analogue emulations. Not as good as the bass station 2 demo sorry. Demo fail. Digital all round sound

  11. Also there’s one button for plug in expansion so does that mean you will have to keep changing between expansions. I think they have missed a trick here. They could have released a polyphonic one with multiple modes at the same time. Are the any advantages of this over the Gaia? Which also missed a trick by being only mono timbal if you ignore the gm sound kit. It’s another Gaia isn’t it? Although that was great for strings too. The voice and drum machine in the range are pretty cool but need more convincing with this one.

  12. The native System-1 engine is 4-voice. Other Plug Outs might have a higher poly count, or the System-1 might increase voice count in a future firmware upgrade.

    But the one thing that can’t be added via software is Audio In – that’s something to think about.

    The 2-octave keybed is fine for little analog bass monos like MiniBrute, Bass Station II, etc – but even MicroKorgs MiniNovas have 3 octaves – the bare minimum for playing meaningful poly.

  13. Interesting that this is using their new analog modeling tech, but one of the “waveforms” they highlight is a supersaw (and a new supersquare). The supersaw, as originally implemented by Roland, is seven _digital_ saws running at different frequencies with a highpass filter at the fundamental, and this is per note.

    So, if I hold four notes down, I assume it’s generating those seven saws per note.

    So, obviously, they aren’t slavishly sticking to pretending the System-1 is behaving just like a analog synth. I assume they’ll have plugouts for not just their classic analogs, but also their classic digital synths.

Leave a Reply