Roland JD-990 Super JD

Roland JD-990 Image

The JD-990 is an enhanced version of the JD-800 and was the top o' the line JD-synth. Its rack-mount design and impressive power and functionality within the studio paved way for the hugely successful JV-series rack modules which lead, ultimately, to the XV-series monster-modules! The JD-990 is a digital synth with 6MB of ROM sounds with "analog-like" edit parameters and features. These include lowpass filtering, ring modulation, osc. sync, frequency cross-mod, etc. The JD-990 is also compatible with JV80 and JD800 expansion boards.

The JD-990 has a large LCD display which makes editing very easy and intuitive, you can actually see the envelopes and LFO rates. There's an on-board multi-effects processor with Delay, Reverb, Phaser, Distortion, Chorus, and EQ. For the studio, the JD-990 has MIDI IN/OUT/THRU and eight outputs in four stereo pairs. The JD-990 can hold one internal expansion board and the best choice is to put the Vintage expansion in it because that gives you about 512 patches (Only 255 from JV-series!) of which 256 are specially programmed for the JD-990. It is used by Vangelis, The Prodigy, Apollo 440, ATB, and Mirwais.

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50 Visitor comments
November 9, 2009 @ 6:42 pm
I recently paid $750 for one with the Vintage Synths expansion board in it. It's a fair price, I think. The only negative thing I can think of is polyphony. 24 voices is a little low. Especially if you're playing fat pads with long release time. However, you can solve this by using more than one unit simultaneously. Apparently, you can run up to 8 of these babys in "stack mode". That should give you 192 voices! Or so I've heard. Anyways, the JD-990 sounds fantastic, and is a breeze to program once you get the hang of it.
October 12, 2009 @ 2:10 am
You can easily program the JD990 by connecting a JD800... bought one last summer. I own 3 JD990 now, and stacked them together. By panning and tuning each one indivual you get the spacyest pads you've ever heard.. very addictive!!!. Need to find one more vintage board, then I'm complete.
nik green
September 19, 2009 @ 8:18 pm
I bought one when it came out in 1993, and it still remains one of my favorites. When I "hear a sound in my mind" and want to program it, the 990 is where I often go for the task in hand.
July 31, 2009 @ 12:58 pm
Excelente sintetizador. Som poderoso, com excelentes parâmetros para programação de sons.Muito completo, apesar da sua fraca polifonia.Excelentes efeitos e excelentes filtros. Um dos meus preferidos da minha colecção. Tenho no meu JD-990 a expansão SR-JV80-04 vintage synth, o que lhe aumenta em muito a sua potência em termos de síntese. Awsome machine!!!!!
April 18, 2009 @ 2:40 pm
You should also mention that this is the only product from Roland (from this era) to utilize full 44.1KHz sampling rate instead of the usual 32KHz or less on the other product lineups. This plus the well designed filters make up for the well sought after sound quality. But in those days you'd usually have to sell half your family to afford one - priced almost as high as the S-770 sampler ;)
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Rated 4.34 (737 Votes)

  • Check Price
  • The link above will take you to an eBay 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 - 6MB of ROM waveform data (expandable to 16MB), 4 osc. per patch
  • Memory - 3 banks x 64 patches (expandable), 3 drum kits with 61 sounds
  • LFO - 2 per patch
  • Filter - TVF: Lowpass/bandpass/highpass-filters with resonance and envelopes
  • VCA - TVA envelopes and pitch envelopes
  • Effects - Delay, Reverb, Phaser, Distortion, Chorus, EQ
  • Keyboard - None
  • Arpeg/Seq - None
  • Control - MIDI (6-part + rhythm part multitimbral)
  • Date Produced - 1993
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