Roland have today announced the latest addition to their ever-popular Juno range of keyboards, the Juno-DS, which is available in 61-key and 88-key versions. The larger of the two features Roland’s Ivory Feel-G Keyboard with progressive hammer action that is said to deliver “high-end touch and playability… while keeping the instrument light and easy to carry”.
Other headline features include eight ‘phrase pads’ allowing players to supplement live performances with samples or music files stored on USB memory. As well as that, the Juno-DS adds a mic input for vocal effects, which should save the mobile performer carrying extra bulky effects. As part of this there’s a dedicated vocal reverb, plus a built-in vocoder and an Auto Pitch effect if you just have to get that T-Pain/Cher sound.
The Juno-DS also has a built-in USB audio and MIDI interface so it can act as a front end for your home or mobile recording studio, as well as a dedicated DAW Control mode to give you hands-on control of your favourite virtual instruments.
On the sound side of things, Roland have updated both their acoustic and electric piano sounds, and the new models support internal waveform expansion via USB for unlimited tonal range. Over 1000 EXP sounds are available for free download at Roland’s Axial website, including top-quality acoustic piano collections, world instruments, percussion, loops and more. In addition, users can load in WAV sounds from their personal library and play them from the keyboard.
With the onboard eight-track pattern sequencer, users can easily capture their ideas for songs and beats. Non-stop operation should enhance the creative flow, allowing for quick development of full arrangements, and the sequencer is also convenient for supporting live performances with pre-made backing music and on-the-fly looping.
Both models can run on batteries or with an AC power supply. The Juno DS88 and DS61 will be available in October and should cost £799 and £549 respectively.