Roland SH-201 vs. Gaia

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Roland SH-201 vs. Gaia

Postby ZeeOne » Fri Jun 07, 2013 4:22 am

It seems like in lot of ways the Gaia is a step down from the SH-201-greater polyphony but monotimbral, one less octave of keys (seriously, Roland, 37 keys on a 64-voice poly synth?), no Feedback OSC...that being said, the Gaia has one more oscillator than the SH-201, more effects, and an overall better feel quality-wise.

What do you guys think?
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Re: Roland SH-201 vs. Gaia

Postby meatballfulton » Fri Jun 07, 2013 2:13 pm

SH-201 is also monotimbral.

The reduced keyboard is odd, IMHO the current trend for fewer keys is based on players who really don't have keyboard chops and don't need them for their music.

Gaia is way more powerful because of the layering feature. Instead of mixing two oscs into a single filter like the 201 you have just one osc but you can layer three "tones" together which allows for much more complex patching and arguably is familiar to those weened on digital synths which have ben using that concept since the late 80s.

That's also why it needs 64 voices...each tone uses one voice so a 3-tone patch uses 2 voices per note played. If you play with all ten fingers using patches with long releases there's no voice stealing as there would be on the 201.

IMHO the Gaia is a step up except for the keys.
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Re: Roland SH-201 vs. Gaia

Postby Z » Fri Jun 07, 2013 4:15 pm

Never messed with a SH-201 in a proper environment (only at GC through a single speaker - why do they never set up synths with STEREO speakers?). I've got a Gaia sitting atop my CP-70 and LOVE the sounds, but can't stand the 3 octave keyboard. At least there's a HOLD button on the Gaia if you want an arpeggio to play hands-free. I've also got a PK-5 sitting underneath the piano which is MIDI'd to the Gaia if I want to play some drone bass notes.

The Gaia also has a GM sound module built-in, which I've only scratched the surface on. I look forward to MIDI'ing up an iPad & sequencer app to play the additional GM sounds.

The Gaia also has a 3.5mm input jack on the upper right hand corner if you want to plug in a mp3 player or whatever to jam along with.
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Re: Roland SH-201 vs. Gaia

Postby sleddogssg » Wed Aug 21, 2013 6:55 am

I have been making songs on synths for years but I am just starting to make/learn about making sounds. I got an SH-201 and it seems geared towards making your own sounds. I was thinking about selling it and getting a gaia. Someone told me that they think the SH-201 has better sound (more raw and strong). It seem like a lot of people like the Gaia. Can anyone advise me on this?
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Re: Roland SH-201 vs. Gaia

Postby cgren72 » Wed Aug 21, 2013 5:12 pm

sleddogssg wrote:I have been making songs on synths for years but I am just starting to make/learn about making sounds. I got an SH-201 and it seems geared towards making your own sounds. I was thinking about selling it and getting a gaia. Someone told me that they think the SH-201 has better sound (more raw and strong). It seem like a lot of people like the Gaia. Can anyone advise me on this?


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