Roland Juno-106

Roland Juno-106 Image

The Juno-106 is a very common and widely used analog polysynth. It continues to be one of the most popular analog synths due to its great sound and easy programmability. It was the next major incarnation of the Juno-series, following the Juno-60. While it has virtually the same synth engine as the Juno-60, the 106 added extensive MIDI control making it one of Roland's first MIDI-equipped synthesizers. There was also increased patch memory storage, up to 128 patches instead of the 56 patches available in the Juno-60. However, the Juno-60 is often said to have a slight sonic edge over the more advanced 106. The 60 had the ability to modulate oscillator pulse from its envelope and has a "punchier" sound quality.

The Juno-106 is a six-voice polyphonic and programable analog synth with one digitally controlled oscillator (DCO) per voice. While classic monophonic synths used two or three oscillators to create a fatter sound, the Juno-106 uses built-in Chorus to fatten up its sound to dramatic effect. The nature of its DCO meant it was stable and always in perfect tune but still warm and analog. There is an excellent 24dB/oct analog lowpass filter with plenty of resonance and self-oscillating possibilities and a non-resonant highpass filter. The programable pitch/mod bender can be assigned to control the DCO pitch, VCF cutoff, and LFO amount all at once or individually.

The Juno-106 was the first MIDI equipped Juno and its implementation is quite good. There are 16 MIDI channels available and MIDI SysEx data can be transmitted/received from all the sliders and buttons for total remote control and sequencing capability. A switch on the back of the keyboard, next to the MIDI ports allows the user to switch between three types of MIDI modes: Keyboard and Hold data only; Keyboard, Hold, Bender, Patch selection data; or All data (including SysEx). Most users simply set it to MIDI Function mode 3 and forget it.

This synth is incredibly straightforward and very powerful. It's SH-series derived panel layout is easy to understand and very hands-on. Use it to generate lush pads, filter sweeps, and funky bass lines and leads. The Juno-106 is an awesome learning tool for anyone new to analog synthesis, as well as an electronic musician's dream for its warm analog sounds coupled with modern features like MIDI and memory - all at a very reasonable price. And still the Juno-106 has an even cheaper alter-ego in the form of the HS-60 - a hobbyist version with built-in speakers.

The Juno-106 is one of the most loved and used synthesizers by professionals and hobbyists alike! William Ørbit, Überzone, Norman Cook (Fatboy Slim), Autechre, BT, Vince Clarke, Moby, 808 State, Underworld, Leftfield, Fluke, Josh Wink, Todd Terry, Depeche Mode, Eat Static, Biosphere, The Prodigy, The Shamen, Bushflange, Cirrus, Astral Projection, Apollo 440, Faithless, Union Jack, Computer Controlled, Pet Shop Boys, Sneaker Pimps, Erasure, Freddy Fresh, Rabbit in the Moon, Kevin Saunderson, Jimmy Edgar, Laurent Garnier, Vangelis, Sigur Ros, and the Chemical Brothers have used this synth extensively! It belongs in your studio!

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195 Visitor comments
rabies
December 11, 2010 @ 11:01 am
just got a perfectly working near0mint juno 106 and i love it. are all juno 106s doomed to fail?
angus
December 6, 2010 @ 4:53 am
does anyone know a juno 106 vst editor apart from the rekon audio one?
i just got a 106 and love it but would like more integation with my daw.
orlando56
November 20, 2010 @ 5:30 pm
I did the acetone fix on an ailing 106 and it worked. I am so pleased.
tRex
November 11, 2010 @ 7:34 am
@ asci_white - that MYTH about 60's being "punchier" or "fatter" has been disproved in multiple blind-tests using identical signal paths. In many circumstances the 106 was (yes, still blindly) even picked over the 60 as producing superior depth and body when set to the same parameters. I've owned every oldschool Juno (even the Alphas) and the 106 owns them all and then some. Disbelievers? Set up your own controlled blind-test with as many participants as you like, you'll see. :)
asci_white
November 9, 2010 @ 2:30 am
@Ekhsel, sounds more like a 'chipped key' as in damaged. You can buy replacements on ebay for a few quid.

Had a 106 for about 6 months now and lovin it. Spent about 40 hours repairing it so got it cheap but my god what fat sounds. Put through FX this thing can rattle walls but I have to admit, little bit dissapointed with the chorus. I knew it was gonna be noisy but this takes the mickey.

Still, classic sound and forget this bull [beep] about 60s being punchier. EQ and effects can take you anywhere..
 
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  • 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 - 6 voices
  • Oscillators - 1 DCO per voice: pulse, saw, and square
  • LFO - 1 with Rate and Delay
  • Filter - non-resonant high pass and resonant low pass (24 dB/oct)
  • VCA - ADSR, level and gate
  • Keyboard - 61 keys
  • Arpeg/Seq - None
  • Memory - 128 patches
  • Control - MIDI (In/Out/Thru)
  • Date Produced - 1984

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