Roland Jupiter-8

Roland Jupiter-8 Image

The Jupiter-8 was Roland's first truly professional analog synthesizer. The Jupiter-8 features 16 rich analog oscillators at 2 per voice, eight voice polyphony and easy programming! At eight voices you can get some pretty thick analog sounds. Easy and intuitive programming via front panel sliders, knobs and buttons for all your tweaking needs. The legacy of the Jupiter synthesizers is due to their unique voice architecture and design, creating sounds that were so unreal and amazing that they have to be heard! No other synths in the world can create analog sounds as cool and authentic as these.

The Jupiter-8 was the biggest and fattest of them all (Jupiters and Junos)! It was one of the first synths to allow its keyboard to be split and layered - it's eight voices of trance heaven! Cross-mod, oscillator sync, a great LFO and a classic arpeggiator are also on-board. There's also a killer resonant analog low pass filter, same as the Juno-6 / 60, with the added option of choosing 2-pole (12 dB/oct) or 4-pole (24 dB/oct) modes as well as a separate high-pass filter. Unfortunately for the earlier models, tuning was very unstable but that seemed to be resolved in later models. Unlike its smaller counterpart, the Jupiter-6, the Jup 8 does not feature MIDI, only Roland's DCB sync can be found on some models. However, MIDI retro-kit's are available from various companies. Patch presets can store keyboard splits, arpeggiator settings, voice assign mode, hold, portamento and modulation settings.

Roland Jupiter-8 Image

The Jupiter-8 has been used by Tangerine Dream, Orbital, Future Sound of London, Moby, Duran Duran, Underworld, Vince Clarke, Überzone, Jean Michel Jarre, Roxy Music, OMD, A Flock Of Seagulls, Depeche Mode, Rush, Meat Beat Manifesto, Banco De Gaia, Josh Wink, Thomas Dolby, Howard Jones, The Cars, Prince, Gary Wright, Jan Hammer, BT, Adrian Lee, Heaven 17, Kitaro, Elvis Costello, Tears for Fears, Huey Lewis and the News, Journey, Moog Cookbook, Toto, Yes, Devo, Freddy Fresh, George Duke, Greg Phillanganes, Jonathan Cain of Journey, Greg Johnson & Kevin Kendrick of Cameo, Stevie Wonder and Simple Minds.

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100 Visitor comments
tetris
January 23, 2012 @ 4:59 am
Alex - You are an idiot. You also sound like someone who works for a competitor. Korg? Yamaha? Arturia? Funny, I was at NAMM and I heard a story that some big shot in Arturia was bashing the new JP80 with the exact same whine and complaint like you and Roland told him all to shut up. Roland was right considering that they are using their trademark for their emulation marketing.

And you are dead wrong about the JP80. Don't slam the JP80 especially if you don't own it. Remember this: I have owned BOTH a JP8 and a JP80.
garry
December 20, 2011 @ 3:25 pm
the Jupiter 8 is an amazing synthesizer I bought one new in the 80s
had it for years with my Roland tr909 as time went on I also bought a Roland jp8000
to see what everyone was raving on about with its 7 super saw waves and it was strange at first using it as I couldn't workout the osc,s very well but once I got used to the jp8000 it was just amazing I made sounds just as good and better then my
Jupiter 8) you can make every sound possible on a Roland jp8000 with will replicate exact as the Jupiter 8) in the end I sold my Jupiter 8 and keep my Roland jp8000
and never did look back
W. J. Brookes
December 17, 2011 @ 6:45 pm
Testris, if you can, save the defunct JP8. Whatever you do, don't throw it out. They're totally fixable from the ground-up. If you find a competent tech, it can be restored to mint condition. After all, there were apparently only 2000 built. Sure, there are newer boards, but nothing sounds quite the same or has the same interface. MIDI retrofits are easy and available. But why use a JP8 for MIDI anyway. It's more of a live player's board. Aftertouch is a rarity on analogs. Finally, 8-poly is pretty good for a real analog synth. Look what people are paying for the re-releases of mono-synths....
Brento
December 10, 2011 @ 3:16 am
Furthermore, people here seem to be up-in-arms about the s/h price, but they average at $6000 or something, which is what they cost in the first place back in the early eighties, at least here in Australia. All the guitars I own have appreciated much more than that over the years...
The Jupiter 8 was always considered a pricey synth. It was the flagship of the Roland fleet. I also seem to remember the Yamaha DX1 costing a small fortune...
Brento
December 10, 2011 @ 3:13 am
The JP80 is a great modern synth, but it WAS marketed as a modern revamp of a JP8, and it just ain't. Not even close. I'm not buying into the argument here about whether or not the JP8 is a classic or not, but in response to certain comments here, Roland sold HEAPS of them, lots of very influential artists used it, and it sounds great. This is one of those synths that seems to defy modelling - the Arturia model comes close, but it's not quite right.
Incidentally, I reckon the JP6 sounds just a bit better...
 
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  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 8 voices
  • Oscillators - 2 VCO's per voice (16 oscillators's!) switchable between triangle, sawtooth, pulse, and square waves plus noise on OSC 2
  • LFO - 4-waveform (sine, tri, ramp, random) LFO
  • Filter - Low pass filter with 2-pole (12 dB/oct) and 4-pole (24 dB/oct) modes, Env Mod, LFO MOd, Key Follow. Separate 6 dB/oct high pass filter.
  • VCA - Standard ADSR and mixer to balance oscillator levels
  • Memory - 64 patches and 8 patch presets
  • Keyboard - 61 note keyboard
  • Control - DCB Roland to Roland sync/interface on some models
  • Date Produced - 1981 - 1984

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