Commando Style Chiptune On A Roland A-01

This video, via ranzee, explores creating Commodore 64 SID style chiptune using a Roland A-01 synthesizer.

The A-01 is a genre-busting piece of gear, very capable, but also challenging for Roland to position in the market:

  • The A-01 is the same size as Roland’s Boutique synths, and can dock in the Boutique K-25m keyboard.
  • It’s a MIDI controller that works over full-size MIDI & USB.
  • It’s also a wireless Bluetooth LE controller.
  • It’s a unique 8-bit virtual analog synthesizer.
  • It’s also a step sequencer.
  • It’s got CV/Gate connectors, so it can control analog & modular gear.

The A-01 is an 8-bit VA, but goes beyond the capabilities of the C64. As noted in the video, ranzee uses the A-01 to go beyond the sound of the original. Here’s what he has to say about the video:

I take a look at an old Commodore 64 favorite game Commando and try to recreate the music by Rob Hubbard.

I’m using a Roland A-01 Boutique because it is an 8-Bit synthesizer. I show actual game footage and music taken from my personal Commodore 64.

I also take a look over Ableton Live and how to MIDI map individual tracks on the A-01 8-bit mono synth. Multi-track recording of all the sounds, including mapping drums from SID samples.

Watch until the end to see how it turns out 🙂

3 thoughts on “Commando Style Chiptune On A Roland A-01

  1. Great work. The A-01 is such a quirky little device! I love mine, and will never part with it, but I don’t use it to anywhere near its full potential.Definitely a great buy when it was on sale – I think I paid 80 quid for mine.

  2. The Roland A-01 is a piece of gear that everybody could use, but Roland just couldn’t figure out how to market it.

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