Roland JD-800

Roland JD-800 Image

The JD-800 is Roland's answer to half a decade of hard-to-program synthesizers. Covered in sliders that act as dedicated editors just like a classic analog synth, the JD-800 is an extremely programmable and hands-on digital synthesizer. It is also an interesting and great sounding digital synth with incredible flexibility and control. Internal ROM based waveforms are combined to build your sounds. The sounds are based on Roland's D-50, but updated for the nineties with multimode filters - uncommon but welcome at the time.

The JD-800 came in a tough metal case capped off on the sides with large plastic covers. Programming may be a little too flexible for some users, but once you know what you're doing with it, almost any sound you can dream up can be dialed in and stored.

Roland JD-800 Image

It has been used by William Ørbit, Emerson Lake & Palmer, 808 State, Ken Ishii, Astral Projection, Rabbit in the Moon, Depeche Mode, Underworld, Tangerine Dream, LTJ Bukem, Apollo 440, Jean Michel Jarre, ATB, Vangelis, Pet Shop Boys, Faithless, Luke Vibert, Mouse on Mars, Laurent Garnier, MC Hammer, Bushflange, Genesis, and Eat Static.

Check Roland JD-800 Prices on eBay

The link above will take you to a search for this synth to see active listings with more images, specs and information. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace. Our marketplace gets thousands of visits every week so make sure to check back often if you want to buy or sell a synth.

Related forum topics


Are you looking to buy or sell a Roland JD-800? Post an ad in Gear For Sale or a request in Gear Wanted. For spare parts and repair services check out Gear Services & Other Goods. Our forums also has a Buyer’s Guide section where you can ask for advice on buying synthesizers.

125 Visitor comments
January 24, 2012 @ 7:17 am
The weirdest shipping of the synth. After winning e-bay auction I wrote to seller "pack it CAREFULLY, its plastic case is fragile". I got it in a big cartong but that synth was packed inside cartong WITH A BLANKET. Blanket have went halfway the bottom of package, during the transport I guess, but synth was ok due to careful postman. I was very surprised to see this odd packaging becouse I were used to see lots of bubbleplastic or newspapers as packaging. But later I come to thought - that must be a woman who packed it and shes understanding about what is "careful packing fragile things".
December 17, 2011 @ 5:31 pm
Cheap plastic case and not sexy looking??? I bought my first JD800 over the net and the postman delivered it me in a flimsy package. After i unpacked it one of the side panels was bend. There is metal under its grey skin. I opened it and fixed it by bending it back. Looked as nothing was happened. Beside that it is the most amazing looking synth i have eber owned. If that instrument doesn't look sexy what is? You fell like controlling the Nostromo with all this sliders, knobs and lights. And it sounds beautiful. Love it! A true classic!
November 23, 2011 @ 8:32 am
Also Ronald Mael from Sparks uses this synth, although he have attached a sticker with his name on it, so it is RONALD JD800
October 15, 2011 @ 8:34 am
I forgot to also mention it has a beautiful self diagnosis mode, tells you everything, straight ahead and well engineered. It has a multi-key mode where you can program an individual sound for each key. This I still use for foley gigs and abstract pieces etc, wierd fractal tunings etc. Has enough chorus and delay taps to do 6 voice spectral combs, many many things about this one. A proper light sabre for the synth jedi. The only one from that 1990s decade I can really recommend.
October 15, 2011 @ 8:34 am
This synth is one of the best. I have owned many since 1978 until now. The JD800 in single mode is hard to beat. Incredibly fat, due to EQ layering; i.e. dynamic filter, 6 channel spectrum filter effect and onboard parametric. Really sparkles. I have made so many sounds with this beast too, instantly, this is real power. I also wrote a patch in Max back in 1995 that let me use it as a digital mixer/controller. Built pretty well. Mine will be 20 in a couple of years, in that time i have replaced only two faders.
Post Comment!
VSE Rating


User Rating

Rated 4.32 (887 Votes)

  • Check Prices on eBay
  • The link above will take you to a search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 24 voices
  • Oscillators - ROM based digital synthesizer
  • #Instruments - 6 part multitimbral
  • Keyboard - 61 key keyboard with velocity and aftertouch
  • Arpeg/Seq - NO
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1991-93

Errors or Corrections? Send them here.