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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Are you looking to buy or sell a Roland Juno-106? 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.

195 Visitor comments
bass4bass
June 2, 2011 @ 12:28 pm
I bought this synth brand new, It was my first one didn't even know how to play.But I was in A Rush tribute band, and it gave me all the sounds that I needed at the time and being able to use the slider live and everything was a cool experience. now some almost 30 years later this synth still works and still relevant,And it as the original battery, and now my kids play on it and they think it the most awsome thing around the house. I will never sell this keyboard.
Rob
May 25, 2011 @ 5:03 pm
For your battery problem try contacing Synthrestore ( http://www.synthrestore.co.uk/ ) I'm pretty sure you could take the board out of your 106 fairly easily and send it to them. they will be able to fit the battery holder so you can do it yourself the next time it goes. Ive had all my voice chips replaced in my 106 by them and they did a great job very reasonably and helpfully.
Scott
May 16, 2011 @ 8:03 pm
I miss this synth more than any other that I've sold over the years. This is the one synth I've gotten rid of that I wish I had back.
juju
May 8, 2011 @ 2:47 am
Battery replacement is easy. De-solder old one, put in a cr2032 battery holder in place (slightly bend header pins to fit the pcb board), slide in new cr2032 battery and load in factory patches after doing a search on google for them. Not too hard if you know how things work inside these types of synths.
Barney
May 1, 2011 @ 5:51 pm
@mike m
I thought you could change the battery yourself? I've seen that there's at least one tutorial on YouTube and I thought it was just a case of taking the case off, taking the appropriate part or circuit board out and putting another one in?
 
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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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