Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

A forum for comparing two or more synths against each other. Also known as "versus" threads.

Re: Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

Postby Pro5 » Sat Feb 15, 2014 4:15 pm

vuuv wrote:welp i totally went and splurged and got a j3xp w/ the programmer and it's the best


Congratz - 3P is my longest owned synth!
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Re: Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

Postby alan93 » Tue Jul 29, 2014 8:00 pm

Sorry for the late bump but I got the 3p when it first came out in '84 and still love it. The punchy brass is the best.
The strings are also thick with the proper detune and chorus and an added external chorus delay.
The best compliment I ever got was from a music professor who listened to one of my classical recreations who said "How did you do that?"
The programmer is fast, versatile and feeds creativity on the fly.

The only draw back I found on this was no portamento. Not sure if the others have it but its a huge hole on an otherwise great synth.
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Re: Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

Postby Pro5 » Sat Aug 09, 2014 6:12 pm

alan93 wrote:Sorry for the late bump but I got the 3p when it first came out in '84 and still love it. The punchy brass is the best.
The strings are also thick with the proper detune and chorus and an added external chorus delay.
The best compliment I ever got was from a music professor who listened to one of my classical recreations who said "How did you do that?"
The programmer is fast, versatile and feeds creativity on the fly.

The only draw back I found on this was no portamento. Not sure if the others have it but its a huge hole on an otherwise great synth.


Well, you could KIWI mod it if you feel the loss badly. I believe KIWI mod has portamento. It's a great mod all round as well.
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Re: Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

Postby Pro5 » Thu Aug 14, 2014 4:33 am

commodorejohn wrote:Man, the JX-10 gets such a bad rap. Yes, the MIDI sucks, yes, the range of sound is limited, but within that range it's just a pure joy. Super-classy, lush, mellow, restrained tones are what it excels at - somehow even the stuff like oscillator sync that generates weird yowly tones on other synths comes out sounding refined on the JX-10. You have to go into full-on cross-mod-with-heavy-pitch-modulation territory before it even approaches sounding nasty and dirty. So when you employ those features, there's a whole world of classy, mellow sounds that on other synths would be getting funky and nasty to be explored. It may not be a jack-of-all-trades, but dammit, it certainly approaches being a master of some.


yeah, well I agree it is a master of some (warm paddy analog DCO strings for one) but... I'd rather the MKS-70 (if you don't mind racks and don't have space for that monster keybed on the JX-10), with better midi and less to go wrong. I generally prefer keyboards but due to the somewhat flaky nature, and footprint of the giant JX-10 the MKS-70 is a good choice here.

Either way, one thing I'd always advise on the 8P/10/MKS-70 is to run it without the chorus as much as you possibly can, it seems to exaggerate the shortcommings in the oscs/filter more than on most synths. Run the basic sounds through some outboard/plugs - bypass the chorus and things start sounding a lot better.
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Re: Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

Postby commodorejohn » Thu Aug 14, 2014 7:33 pm

Depends on your preference, I suppose. I'm not really a fan of rack-mount stuff simply because it's so much less hands-on (I'll put up with it on synths where there's not a lot of knobbiness to begin with, like my DMS-8 Mirage, though.) Granted, you don't even get that much hands-on capability with the JX-10 unless you've got the PG-800, but I'm much happier sitting down at a specific keyboard and putting my mind in that frame of reference than I am controlling a bunch of rack-mount gear from a computer.

As for the chorus, it really depends on what you're trying to accomplish. It's not good for every sound (and the fact that there are only two settings certainly does nothing to help that,) but for certain kinds of sounds it's very nice indeed. (Layering two tones with different chorus settings can help to bring a little balance into it, as well.)
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Re: Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

Postby Pro5 » Sat Aug 16, 2014 6:59 am

I definitely prefer keyboards as I said, and I think very similar to you on that.

It's just in this specific case I find the downsides of the JX-10 and the upsides of the MKS-70 compelling enough to, for once, go for the rack if you have the option.

Though I do think, really, the JX-10 actually looks impressive and quite grand in it's understated grey and elongated keybed. Certainly didn't hurt Nick Rhodes on stage/studio in the Notorious/Big Thing era (D-50 joined him for Big thing)

Having said this, the racks now tend to have higher prices and the custom software that fred guy is working on will level the playing field concerning midi bugs in the JX-10 so it's only really a question of the large keybed and if that's a problem or not.

That mod (for both JX10 and MKS-70) looks hella tasty btw - 2 extra FAST envs, PWM!! and all the rest... :mrgreen:
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Re: Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

Postby zaphod betamax » Mon Aug 17, 2015 3:09 am

I have 2 JX-3Ps.
I bought a JX-8P in 2012, but rarely use, time to sell I think.
I vote JX-3P x2!
lol
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Re: Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

Postby ScottMG » Mon Aug 22, 2016 2:10 am

First, I don't want to take anything away from anyone who prefers one over the other, because, who am I or anyone to disagree with someone's musical taste. We all have different needs, ears, and brains.

Having said that, IMO for most musicians I think comparing a JX3p to a JX8p is like comparing a used Honda Accord to a Toyota Camry. They are both outstanding and great values that achieve a similar result, but are still a bit different. They are, for the most part, very similar except the 8p has velocity and separate envelopes for the filter and amplitude. They both have two oscillators that can be cross modulated, and they both have a chorus (maybe it's me, but the 3p chorus seems to sound a bit nicer / less garbled when compared to the 8p).

Sonically, they do sound different... but it's a little different. The 8p has a brighter sawtooth wave and the square wave is purer. You hear more sizzle in the square wave on the 3p and the Junos. This means when you modulate the 8p's square wave, it produces some extremely clear sounds - this gives the 8p a more pure sound (may be too clear for some), whereas the 3p has a thicker, more cohesive sound, if that makes sense. But we are splitting hairs because, these differences can mostly be erased with just a bit of EQ on either synth.

BTW I think it now makes more sense to compare a JX-10 to the JX-3p, since the street prices are so close. I personally find the JX10 to be an indispensable synth because it does the following things that the 3p and Juno's (and Jupiter's for that matter) can't (and btw, IMO the Juno 6/60 is one of the greatest synths ever made).

- 12 voices of polyphony. This is huge and you won't ever hear any voice stealing and awesome for long pads or keyboard sounds with a long release. This really means there are some styles you can do on a JX-10 that you can't on a 3p/8p/juno.
- LONG envelopes. Everyone talks about snappy envelopes, well IMO the 3p/juno envelopes can't get long enough for just some basic sound effects, pads, etc. The JX-10 is king with these beautiful long envelopes
- Can be used as a controller keyboard

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Re: Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

Postby ninja6485 » Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:12 am

Pro5 wrote:Either way, one thing I'd always advise on the 8P/10/MKS-70 is to run it without the chorus as much as you possibly can, it seems to exaggerate the shortcommings in the oscs/filter more than on most synths. Run the basic sounds through some outboard/plugs - bypass the chorus and things start sounding a lot better.
Really? I use the chorus all the time. It's like the chorus on the Juno 60! #-o
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...
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Re: Roland JX showdown: JX-3P vs JX-8P vs Super JX10

Postby c-level » Mon Aug 22, 2016 8:42 pm

i own all 3.

the 3P has its sound, yes more 'raw' and i wont be letting mine go anytime soon even if its on the shelf till then.

the 8p and i had kind of a thing going. something uncanny happens out of those weird DACs and crusty chorus noise. the voice stacking and detuning is its own sound. dont clip that VCA tho. i find it magical in its own right. i used a very well implemented M4L editor that make it worth its salt even without a PG.

the 10 i got and immediately upgraded to vecouven v3 eprom. i couldnt wrap my head around sysex to make my own editors, nor did it play nice with any 8p software editor i had. only found some CTRLR pages that took up more room than my arrange track. its nice, having two 8p's chorus dacs and vca all in one makes things a little hazy if you overdo it. a monster of a keyboard. literally the largest thing i own.

for my particular situ, the 8p is the most implementable. the 3p will do nicely in the hands of a future bandmate. the 10 needs to go somewhere on top of a rhodes/hammond hahah.
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