Roland FANTOM brings the well-known keyboard series to the year 2019 with a new engine, color touchscreen, dual CV/Gate outputs, and deep computer integration.
There are three flagship keyboards on the market that are loved by professionals: KORG Kronos, Yamaha Montage or the Roland FANTOM series. The last one has not been updated for some time and is currently relatively vintage compared to its competitors. This has probably also thought Roland and today introduced the brand new FANTOM series, in a 61-key (F6), 76-key (F7) and 88-key (F8) version.
It is not a simple update but a completely new development that will bring the FANTOM series into 2019. It features Roland’s latest Synthesizer technologies including analog filters in the sound engine. Further, it features an all-new color touchscreen, 16 RGB pads for launching clips, a classic TR-REC style pattern sequencer, and CV/Gate support.
Information about the exact engine did not exist at the time of the press documentation. Please check for this the Roland website. I think Roland can play in the flagship keyboard line again even if they are a bit reminiscent of Yamaha instruments.
Today’s professional keyboardists need an instrument that lets them compose and perform music with no creative roadblocks to slow them down. They also need to integrate seamlessly with the computer-based environments that form the backbone of modern stage and studio setups. FANTOM is designed to meet all these needs and more, giving players a new type of creative hub to realize ideas and accelerate workflow like never before.
A key feature of FANTOM is its modeless interface, which makes technical limitations and confusing operation a thing of the past. Players never have to worry about what features work in which mode—FANTOM is always in full-on creative mode, providing a consistent working experience in every musical scenario. And with workspaces called Scenes, the instrument can be fully customized and instantly reconfigured for different composition and performance setups.
It’s flexible and expandable sound engine leverages decades of research and development, providing an endless range of inspiring and authentic electronic, acoustic, and hybrid sounds. Players can combine different synthesis technologies along with the onboard analog filter for new and unusual sounds. There’s also an enormous selection of effects available to enhance individual sounds and process entire mixes.
With FANTOM’s potent DSP engine, players can focus on music, not rationing processing power. It’s possible to run all 16 parts with all available effects at once, complete with full patch remain for seamless transitions. There’s never any guessing about how many effects are available, or if sounds can be changed smoothly without limiting complex patches.
It models offer exceptional playability and aftertouch support with Roland’s best keyboards ever, including the acclaimed PHA-50 on the 88-key FANTOM 8 and a brand new semi-weighted action on the 76-key FANTOM 7 and 61-key FANTOM 6. In addition to the color touchscreen interface, there are plenty of knobs and sliders for intuitive and immediate control, plus a dedicated synthesizer section with oscillator, filter, and envelope controls.
It is a complete music composition platform, filled with creative options to build arrangements fast. Available tools include RGB pads, a classic TR-REC style pattern sequencer, real-time recording with piano roll editing, and a grid for recording and launching clips.
It excels as a standalone instrument, but its powers grow exponentially when connected to computers, analog synthesizers, and other gear. DAWs and performance software like Apple’s Logic Pro and MainStage can be operated from the touchscreen and panel controls, and virtual instruments from Roland Cloud and others can be easily controlled and combined with FANTOM’s internal sounds. It’s also possible to drive modular and analog synthesizers from its dual CV/Gate outputs.
Roland FANTOM 8, FANTOM 7 and FANTOM 6 will be available in the U.S in September for $3999,99, $3599.99 and $3299.99, respectively.
More information here: Roland