Roland’s Zenology virtual instrument gets its first Model Expansion in the shape of the classic 1985 JX-8P polyphonic synthesizer and includes the editing functions of the PG-800 programmer.
We first saw Zenology back in May when Roland revealed the software version of the ZEN-Core technology found in their latest synths like the Jupiter-X, XM and MC-707. Initially Zenology has come with the “Z-Core” sounds and expansions but Roland said that they would be bringing out emulations of all their past synthesizers to run inside Zenology and ZEN-Core hardware. JX-8P is the first.
To get hold of it you need to update to version 1.1 of Zenology and then download the expansion via the Roland Cloud Manager. It will work with Zenology Lite and will cost you $149 if you are not a subscriber to the full version.
This is the first time Roland have recreated the sound of the JX-8P. It was known as a highly versatile analogue synthesizer with digitally controlled oscillators that were also capable of producing digital-like tones. The editing page brings in a nicely graphical view of all the parameters from the PG-800 programmer and includes a map of the structure. There are Condition and Pitch Drift controls to mess up the quality and preciseness of the sounds which is a cool feature. You can then add effects from the growing library of MFX effects included with Zenology.
The expansion includes 105 presets 31 of which are from the original synthesizer. Although they say these Model Expansions will be compatible with ZEN-Core hardware it’s currently mentioned as something that is coming “soon” so hardware users will have to be patient.