Roland FA-08 Overview
The FA-08 from Roland is a music workstation featuring an 88-note, weighted-action keyboard, along with a large sound collection inherited from the INTEGRA-7, studio-quality effects, real-time controls, plus onboard sampling for playback from sixteen backlit pads. The sequencer offers simple operation and non-stop loop recording, letting you instantly capture songs and ideas and export them as multi-track data to use with your DAW. All of the INTEGRA-7’s SuperNATURAL synthesizer and XV-5080 PCM tones are onboard, plus a collection of SuperNATURAL acoustic tones that includes pianos, organs, drums, bass, strings, and more. It’s also possible to expand the onboard sound set with FA-series wave sound expansion collections.
In addition to standalone use as a performance instrument and composing workstation, the Roland FA-08 is equally suited to computer-based music production. Simply press the dedicated DAW Control button to instantly set up the instrument to communicate with your computer via USB, letting you use the keyboard and knobs to send MIDI data to your DAW for playing software synthesizers, controlling plug-in effects, etc. Also included are control maps for popular DAWs, providing an easy setup to control transport functions in the software. You can even use the FA-08 as a USB audio interface to record audio directly into your DAW from a microphone, guitar, or stereo line-level device connected to the rear-panel input jacks.
The built-in sampler is based on the company’s SP-404SX sampler and features saving and playback via SDHC cards. You can trigger audio samples directly from sixteen pads, making it easy to expand your productions with loops, backing tracks, one-shots, vocal phrases, sound FX, and more. The samples load instantly, and you can use the four pad banks and clipboard function to rearrange your samples as needed. It’s possible to sample the internal sounds or external sources via the audio inputs, and you can play back WAV, AIFF, or MP3 files. A variety of editing features allow for tweaking the samples, and the pads can be used for other functions such as muting parts, entering numeric values, and more.
A large selection of effects can be used with both the sounds and sequencer tracks. Independent MFX engines are available for all sixteen parts of a Studio Set, with each MFX engine containing sixty-seven different effects types, with an additional option of a vocoder when MFX are used with part one. Six separate COMP+EQ processors are dedicated for individual drum sounds, while global EQ, chorus, and reverb are available for any parts as needed. With the TFX (Total Effects), you can also process the entire output of the instrument with effects such as DJ FX Looper, Isolator, and many others. All the effects can be tweaked in real time via the Sound Modify knobs. The Roland FA-08 ships with an SD card, an SD card protector, an AC adapter, and a power cord.
- Music workstation designed to maximize your creative flow
- 88-note Ivory Feel-G Keyboard provides premium weighted-action performance in a lightweight design that’s easy to transport
- Over 2000 sounds from the flagship INTEGRA-7 sound module, including SuperNATURAL synthesizer and acoustic tones and drums
- Add more tones via internal wave sound expansion slots
- SuperNATURAL synth engine is fully compatible with the expansive collection of free INTEGRA-7 synthesizer tones available from Roland’s Axial sound library site
- 16-track sequencer with non-stop loop recording makes it easy to build songs quickly
- Step recording is available
- Export your sequencer tracks to an SDHC card as a complete stereo mix, or as multi-track audio or MIDI data for use in your DAW
- Onboard sampler based on the SP-404SX features 4 banks of 16 pads and direct recording/playback via SDHC cards
- Studio-quality effects, including sixteen independent MFX engines, six COMP+EQ processors for drums, unique TFX (total effects), and global EQ, chorus, and reverb
- Tweak tones, effects, and external MIDI devices in real time with six user-assignable Sound Modify knobs
- Intuitive, streamlined interface with large color LCD
- Press one button to instantly configure the FA-08 for use with your DAW via USB
- D-Beam, rhythm pattern, arpeggiator, and chord memory functions to expand your creative palette
- Guitar/microphone and line input jacks for performing, sampling, and DAW audio recording
- Dedicated input reverb provides ambience for performing/recording
- USB ports for sound expansion data, updates, and audio/MIDI interfacing with a computer
- MIDI communication with the iPad is possible when using the optional Apple’s iPad Camera Connection Kit