Roland SE-02 Review By Skinnerbox

This video, via Telekom Electronic Beats TV and, features Berlin-based duo Skinnerbox sharing their thoughts on the new Roland SE-02 synthesizer.

The SE-02 is Roland’s collaboration with Studio Electronics and the debut product of the Roland Boutique Designer Series.

They also shared a set of audio demos:

The SE-02 is the first product of a planned Roland Boutique Designer Series. The SE-02 uses discrete analog circuitry to create a synthesizer with a vintage sound & vast programming options. It features lots of knobs and switches for immediate control, plus an onboard sequencer.

Pricing and Availability

The Roland SE-02 analog synthesizers is officially ‘coming soon’, but some retailers already have it available to pre-order. It has a street price of US $499.99. See the Roland site for more information.

22 thoughts on “Roland SE-02 Review By Skinnerbox

    1. it also doesn’t cost enough and you have the ability plug mini keys into it, it needs a function where you can only plug full sized keys in otherwise it catches on fire and calls you names. Additionally it is too new, they should have made it older and it sounds too good while sounding thin and is just a rehash.

  1. It’s perfect!

    As someone who handles a knob on a daily basis that most have found to be far too small to be useful, I’m excited to try something that can be small and also actually perform great!

    Already have it on pre-order.

  2. Size: It is not the small knobs but the limited space between them that bothers. Not usable for live tweaking.
    (imagine it as wide as they keystep …)

    Sound: Good solid 3 osc sound, classic routing , very nicely pulled off but nothing new at the same time.

    For example the circuit monostation is a good blend of classic subtractive monosynth combined with new ways of controlling a synth and very flexible routing (+ the size is just right) – i would choose it over the SE-02 anytime.

    1. Personally, i’m seriously considering buying new runners shoes. The ones i have doesn’t really provide enough cushioning for running on asphalt. Apart from that i’ll try and save my money for an upcoming trip in august.

  3. The features and sound in the demo are great. In comparison with 3 years ago, the options for decent analogue monosynths at affordable prices are far more. This is only good news.

  4. The synths has some great potential. Although this demo was one of the least impressive so far. In terms of original sound design.

    1. I have mentioned this …many times…Roland will release the series in MK2 next year and this will be in full size…so if you dont like this size…then just wait for MK2…

  5. I have been using and buying synths since the 80s. This panel is too small and makes no sense to many of us. Good luck with it, but some of us can not use such small gear easily. I can not fault the sound.

  6. Joke aside. I had one of the first Minimoogs. Making good sounds required fine control over the paramenters. Especially the envelope generators. This is also why we regard faders on studio mixers, among other things – by their travel. The super-mini controls on the new SE/Roland collab is a problem. That doesn’t mean this it’s a bad sounding synth, but it is a restriction on it’s usability.

    Basically I see a super small SE-S1X, and apart for the extra osc – even an ATC-1 (without the ability to swap between filters like some ATC’s). All are super good sounding synths that’s been with us for a few decades by now. But they use encoders… a fact that restrict their accuracy when programming in the very fine domain.

  7. The size as an argument against this and other synths of similar form factor makes sense if you’ll primarily use it live, I guess, where the primary concern would be to be able to see/feel what you are doing. However, mini knobs are far less problematic than mini keys or mini faders IMO, and in the studio, unless you have impaired motor skills, are definitely easy to use, even with my giant hands. I find the JX-03, for example, extremely easy to operate with enough precision (happens to sound great too).

    I’m very curious about this new synth!

  8. These guys videos are like a freakshow!

    Suddenly another arm appears to tweak something…… what the hell!!!!…then you remember it’s two dudes reviewing together.

    Maybe I’m mental?

  9. Wonder if replacing the middle column of knobs in each section with a taller knob would help to minimize accidental bumps?

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